Things are rolling along swimmingly – we collected the Best PC Hardcore Game Award in Game Connection Europe 2018, and the Steam release date is getting closer, with the Barotrauma Steam page now finally up. Check it out and be sure to wishlist us!
We also now have a new website dedicated to Barotrauma, where you will find all the latest news about the game. We will be posting to the blog on the new website regularly about many of the interesting new features that the Steam version of the game will have.
I thought I’d make a little update about the changes we’ve been doing to the campaign mode (+ a few things that also affect other game modes)!
As you may have noticed, the current campaign is quite bare-bones. Personally I’m not satisfied at all with how it works: it feels like playing randomized mission rounds one after another, with the only major difference being that the changes to the submarine, items and characters are persistent. But there’s so much more we could do with it! Our main goal has been to give the player a better sense of progression, to make it feel like they’re gradually advancing through increasingly challenging areas and missions towards an ultimate end goal. We’ve also wanted to make Europa feel more like a living, breathing world that’s affected by the players actions. As to how we’re doing this, here’s some of the new and upcoming features:
The campaign map doesn’t just look better, there’s been a few changes that should make things a lot more interesting. The map consists of 6 concentric rings, each representing a distinct biome (more about that later). Difficulty increases for each successive ring the player passes into, making sub and crew upgrades a necessity the deeper the player ventures. The end goal is to make it to the center of the map, and survive a literal and metaphorical dive into the heart of [REDACTED].
With the overhauled event system I mentioned in the previous post, we have much better control over the difficulty of a given round. Previously the monsters spawns (and the spawn positions) were essentially random, and if you were lucky, it was possible to pass a high-difficulty level without even running into a single monster. With the new system we can guarantee that you will face various challenges in each level. The way the events work now is somewhat similar to Left 4 Dead’s AI director – it can delay additional random events when you already have your hands full with an attacking sea creature or a fire, or create new challenges when everything is going smoothly. There’s still a fair amount of randomness though, so this new system doesn’t mean that you’re safe from additional monster attacks when a catastrophic breach has flooded the sub, nor that you will be bombarded with random disasters when you’ve got everything under control.
While the dynamically changing locations don’t have such a noticeable effect on the gameplay now when the locations are simply menus with possibly some hireable characters and purchasable items, it will have a much greater impact when we implement…