DevBlog#6 - To Bee or not to Bee
Welcome to the 6th instalment of our game updates, we’re excited to share our progress with you once again.
We’re in the middle of working on a lot of exciting new additions to the game, which include inventory, harvesting system, metamorphosis and life stages. We’re also going to show you some cool new insect models that we’re working on, one of them is fully operational, it is, as you might have guessed: the honeybee.
So why don’t your pour favourite hot beverage into your trusty FTH mug and let’s get started. (For mugs and other merch, you can go to https://www.arcaneworlds.com/shop.)
1) New Models
In the previous devlog, we announced that we were going into a more HD and realistic art direction for the game. We’re gradually replacing our placeholder models with more detailed ones, in the meantime, we’ve also worked on some cool new characters that are going to populate our game world very soon.
These new characters include the Black Widow spider, the Black Emperor scorpion, and the Stag beetle.
We spent hours contemplating these beautiful models, and we can’t wait to have them interact with each other.
Spiders and scorpions are not technically insects, they are arachnids, but for the sake of simplicity, we use the term insect for every character in the game.
2) The Honeybee
Honeybees are wonderful creatures. They are social by nature, and will often collaborate to achieve the most arduous of tasks, from finding nectar to defeating larger foes.
In FTH, you will be able to climb the hive ladder, from a simple worker going back and forth to find food, to a queen that controls the whole colony.
We will dive deeper into colonies in the coming months. For now, we have a Honeybee worker armed with a dangerous stinger, it can fly, gather nectar, and get into a fight if need be.
3) Resources and Resource Harvesting
Gathering resources is a major aspect of survival in FTH. We’ve added a new gameplay system that allows you to gather resources such as nectar from flowers and sap from leaves.
These resources can be taken back to your hive to transform into other, more useful resources such as honey.
We plan on expanding this system to let you build a whole “industry“ that will fuel your colony, allowing it to be healthy and grow stronger.
4) Inventory System
So you’re ready to gather your resources, now where are you going to put them?
In your inventory of course!
In real life, insects don’t have tiny backpacks to carry their stuff, but we took some creative liberties there just to make life easier for you.
Your inventory has a weight limit, if you exceed it your character will become increasingly heavier and will tire faster. So you’ll have to manage that aspect as you go on your adventures, and weigh in the risks of carrying a bit more stuff and becoming more vulnerable to predators.
5) Life Stages and Metamorphosis
As in real life, one of your main purposes as a player is to grow.
Eating enough, sleeping well, staying healthy and clean, all these elements will contribute to faster growth.
Growing also means going through multiple life stages through metamorphosis. For now metamorphosis does not have a visual component, but we plan to have some nice animations showing something cool like larvae coming out of eggs or adults breaking cocoons and deploying their wings for the first time.
6) Future Plans for World Design
One of our main challenges in making the game is to create interesting maps to live in and explore.
Our attempts so far to create a fully procedural world have produced good but repetitive results. So we are going in a different direction, where we will be creating hand-crafted maps, and only use procedural generation in well defined areas. That way, we can ensure that the maps are really interesting and fun, with recognizable landmarks, and many cool areas where you can live your insect life to the fullest.
We see this as an opportunity to explore many aspects of insect life, for example, we plan on creating an urban setting where species such as houseflies, mosquitoes and cockroaches can thrive.
7) Our Plans for Release
When we started working on the game a little more than a year ago, we promised ourselves that we would do our best to deliver the most fun and enjoyable experience that we could craft within the limits of our current resources.
Our plans have changes throughout the year, from a simple low-poly game with only a couple of playable species, we’re now aiming at a much broader experience, with lots of species all living in the same world, some even living in colonies with hundreds of individuals.
We are aware of feature creep, and in our case, we believe we have that under control. We simply want to push the game harder in order to make the world more real and enjoyable. If that takes more development time then we believe it’s worth it, and we hope you do too.
8) Final Thoughts
We are getting into the actual lives of insects, while this is very exciting, this is also quite a challenging phase of development. In the coming months, we will be exploring more aspects of life such as mating and living in colonies, while also fleshing out the mechanics that we already have.
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We’re excited to share more of our progress with you along our journey, stay tuned for more news!