DevBlog 54 - What’s Our Plan

Hello and welcome to the 54th CardLife DevBlog,

Lots to share with you all this week so let’s get to it:

2018 & Community

As we’re nearing the end of the year I wanted to take this opportunity to explain to everyone what our ultimate goal is with CardLife and what our plans for 2018 are going to be. So first of all - let me explain what our mission is: Freejam is founded on the philosophy of trying to make incredibly easy to use UGC games - where creative people can enjoy games that they like and share their creations with other like minded players - without having to worry about them being a pro developer.

CardLife was created with this exact vision in mind and that’s why we developed the game to be totally data driven and why we have placed such an emphasis on modding. We want the game to the absolute best online survival game we can make - and for that to be the springboard for players of all skill levels to be able to express their own creativity. Whether that be through the custom character they draw in game, the massive castle they construct or a total conversion modification of the game on a custom server. We don’t want there to be any barriers!

Before we get there though, we know we have to focus on making the best game possible - and so that’s why we have begun scaling the team up in all disciplines - with the anticipation that in 2018 we plan on really accelerating the game’s development in order to launch on Steam Early Access towards the back end of the year. So features and content will be coming in much larger chunks but with greater time between each build. This will allow us to focus on the quality of each patch and make sure that we’re delivering a better game experience for all of you as you come along with us on this journey.

I believe that CardLife will be a great game if we manage to execute on the vision we have - but it will only be considered a true success if we manage to build a supportive and passionate community. So along with developing the game we are also going to be pushing hard in trying to build an active community and getting the word out to as many people as we can that CardLife exists - and we want them to come and join us. I will also be asking our existing community (if you’re reading this - that means you :)) - to help us shape and develop this community so it can be a really creative and friendly place.

Server Resets

So as I mentioned above in we are planning on doing larger but less frequent content updates as we scale the team. With this will come greater change to the code base and more crucially to the server database. This means going forward we will be resetting the servers including the accounts database (where your inventory is stored) more frequently. We haven’t done this yet since we announced CardLife to the Freejam audience, but we have already developed a feature that requires this - building exclusion zones. I mentioned this feature in DevBlog 53 - essentially it prevents other people from building right next to the structures you place down. Currently this would be an issue on server 1 and 2 as many buildings are within this exclusion zone. I will try and make everyone aware of what the plan is before we reset the servers but please be aware it’s a necessary evil.

Ongoing Work: Steep Slopes and Contouring

So with that out of the way, what have we been up to? Currently in the game you will have probably noticed that you and the AI can run up (pretty much) sheer cliff faces and scale mountains at ease. This is clearly a temporary situation as we want the navigation of the world to be part of the progression of the game - with you crafting several items to help you get around the world more efficiently like rafts, jet packs, spider mounts etc. With this aim we have started work on a sliding mechanic that means that you will be prevented from walking up a certain angle of terrain and if you manage to jump/fall onto a steep cliff - you will slide down.

As Neil wrote the collision system he is actually implementing this system, but as soon as that’s done he is moving directly onto the brand new contouring system we have planned for the game. This will be a long term task but will bring a massive performance improvement. It will also make editing the terrain and placing material down a lot more consistent and remove all of the terrain anomalies we have now.

Ongoing Work: Advanced Crafting

The art team has also been very busy and Mike has now finished all of the new ore and refined ore materials which I can’t wait to put into the game. The ores should hopefully be in the next update we push live with refined ores coming once we have created the Furnace which will allow you to smelt the ores into ingots. You will then be able to use the Forge to make metal items like metal swords etc. This will be the first round of us adding the actual crafting progression of the game - as currently what’s live is very placeholder with minimal materials. I’m really looking forward to this :)

Christmas Period

Well that turned into a longer DevBlog than I expected but before I go I wanted to give everyone a more short term update on what our plans are over December. Obviously everyone on the team will be heading away for Christmas holidays at some point so we will be running on a skeletal crew - so we won’t be releasing any major content patches - although we have fixed the memory leak so we are planning on releasing that as a hotfix patch soon as possible. In terms of communication, I will try and stay active as much as I can throughout the holidays but please be patient. This will also be the last DevBlog I write this year and I will be passing over duties to Brian for the rest of the month. So have an absolutely brilliant Christmas and New Year from me - and hopefully we can make 2018 the year of CardLife.


As always if you have any feedback, questions or comments please feel free to contact us at any of our social portals: FacebookTwitter and our very own Forums.


Rich, Co-Game Director