Welcome to our fourth blog post for Urban Venture! Once again, we are happy to show our community some of the things we’ve added and have been working on since our last update. Today, we’re going to be talking about the in-game garage, new features for TrafficAI, as well as a new and improved night mode!
Before we get into the blog post, I wanted to remind everyone that everything you’re about to read/see is subject to change. Game development is a process, and everything can be changed or iterated upon at a moments notice.
With that in mind: I know you are all excited to see what we got in store this time around, so without further adieu, let’s get into it!
The garage is going to be one of the central gameplay features of Urban Venture. Everyone likes pictures or videos of WIP stuff in game development, right? So, take a gander at this beauty:
The main purpose of the garage will be for players to customize, repair, refuel and browse their fleet of vehicles. Car parameters such as your vehicles’ endurance levels, tire pressure, and engine durability will factor into its performance. You will also be able to buy and sell your cars from here, as well other functions we are still working on. The placement of the garage is still something that we are figuring out where to put in the game, currently what you see in the video is a placeholder location for now.
Once we have some more progress made on the garage, we will share more, so stay tuned!
TrafficAI™ is a term that we have thrown around in previous blog posts here and there – and it’s something that we think people will be excited over when they get a chance to play the game! When the game has driving at its core, we think players will really notice and appreciate our dedication to our traffic models to help with proper immersion.
For those that are reading this article for the first time, let me explain what TrafficAI™ is. TrafficAI™ is a technology that we developed in-house to teach real-life autonomous vehicles to learn how to drive. So, we figured, hell, why don’t we put that in our next game, and that’s exactly what we did. We even made some improvements…
- AI’s stopped honking on red lights (believe us, this was a huge problem when all you could hear is honking throughout the entire game)
- Honking is now based by the AI driver’s frustration.
- Honking is now activated once AI is emergency braking.
- The AI are now acting slower on the arcs – no more traffic jams at roundabouts and turns! (This is something that we noticed was a problem when the AI drivers were making moves at roundabouts. The cars would basically get stuck causing humongous traffic jams. Now this shouldn’t be an issue)
- AI density reacts to the day cycle – there are more traffic jams in the morning and afternoon, much less during the nights
For us, the last point is all about player immersion once again. We want the player to experience full day and night cycles on the roads in the game, as you would in real life. The same goes with our dynamic weather system which will influence to how the world around the player reacts. When it rains, there will be less people on the street and braking distance is increased, cars might drive slower and so on.
Nighttime in Urban Venture is a tricky topic. When we started implementing a day/night cycle, we had the challenge of illuminating the roads with streetlights. At first, it was very dark, like too dark! We also had to adjust the traffic flow at night so there could be less cars.
In the pictures below, you can see some before and after examples of light density on the streets. Nighttime driving can bring its own set of challenges in any video game, but in Urban Venture, we wanted to bring as close to an authentic experience as driving in real-life nighttime as possible.
That’s about all from our side! We hope you’re enjoying our monthly Dev Blog updates and if you have any feedback to give about how we’re running things here please don’t hesitate to leave a comment under the post!
Make sure to join our official Discord channel, and follow the development process on socials!
See you all in the next one!
Hasta La Próxima,
Simteract Community Manager