Improbable Island Message of the Day (MoTD)

Real quick WIP update
Admin CavemanJoe2024-01-23 17:06:49 [Permalink]
Hey folks, I've been a bit quiet the last couple of weeks and wanted to stick my head in and let you know what I'm working on at the moment; endgame improvements!

Basically we're taking the Drive out of the Jungle and putting it in a lab on the map. There'll be six labs that don't have the Drive in, and one that does. In a previous update I talked about rewriting the Stamina system for this, but after some fiddling it became clear that it made more sense to do the drive-on-the-map project first.

Like every project, it's become more complex than I'd initially figured; I've got to make all sorts of decisions about what will be in each lab, how best to give clues about where the labs are and which one has the Drive in it, whether the labs should be in the same place for everyone or whether every player will have to find their own labs.

It's a lovely ball of complexity! Just to give you an example, on the local-versus-global information question.

Having lab locations set globally will encourage you lot to chat with each other and keep an eye out on where the labs are and what's in each one, which is great from a social standpoint - but having the lab locations set on a per-player basis makes their discovery more of an explorey-bribey-determiney game element and less of a just ask banter element. If we're to blend the two together, have some labs in the same place for everyone and others in different places for everyone, then that raises more questions: which labs need to stay in the same location for everyone, and which need to be in different places for each player? Should the contents of any given lab be set locally or globally? Should the labs move around, so the information-sharing happens on an ongoing basis? When, and how? Which brings us to figuring out an algorithm to ensure that we never end up with a lab right next to or on top of another lab, and that they're spaced out in satisfying but only semi-predictable ways, which was an interesting morning in itself.

Anyway, the drive labs feature is, I reckon, probably about 60% complete; the labs move around on an irregular basis, there's a hidden mechanism to determine which are in the same place for everyone and which you'll have to hunt for, there are semi-random outcomes to things like what's in that locker or what will that sandwich do to you, the next part of the work will be rejiggering Headphones Jones in the Comms Tent so that he can give you hints that are just hinty enough to be fun.

I've been moving at a pretty good clip so this should be done probably early to mid February. I just wanted to pop on and tell y'all that I'm still alive and working on stuff. :)

Have fun!

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