Camelot Unchained has solved the problem of animating a cow corpse being thrown by a siege weapon

    
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Only in the games industry will you consider how to animate a cow corpse thrown from a catapult as a problem and not, say, a worrying hobby that would get the police called on you. That unique problem appears to have been solved by Camelot Unchained, which has apparently pinned down a ragdoll physics engine solution as part of this week’s update post.

The devs at City State Entertainment have been rather mum about the addition of a ragdoll physics engine because there were concerns about it working and being kind to performance, but it seems they are closer to getting it to work, which will save the animators a lot of time. Which goes right on back to flinging cow corpses through the air: “Remember that cow model we made for the corpse chucker!? Now, no guarantees here, but we are hopeful we can add this in a meaningful and fun way,” explains the post.

While the other updates in the weekly digest are arguably less fun than flinging dead cows with siege weapons, they are no less important such as effects work for the Dark Fool, animation fixes for the Minstrel and the Dark Fool, additional Linuxification and navmesh work including making the chat server work on Linux, and some art work on medium armor, spears, and the creation of two new Viking shields — “one more basic and one a bit ‘cooler’,” as the post describes it.

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Techno Wizard
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Techno Wizard

“Run away, run away, run away!” BOINGGGGG
“Moooooooooooo!” SPLAT

No cows were actually harmed while typing these pixels.

MilitiaMasterV
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MilitiaMasterV

On the game I played for 4+ years, we had catapults and could literally put ANYTHING we wanted in there and launch it. That included corpses. Now granted, there wasn’t much to it, because all you really see from a catapult on the ground is the launching of the catapult itself and MAYBE if you’re lucky, you manage to see the object you fired come down and hit something all the way over where you aimed…(You could wind it up as much as you wanted/move the catapult around…but it was kind of difficult to figure out where it would hit so it often took some messing around/more than a few practice fires…)…and the biggest problem was figuring out damages…in that game, things had QL (Quality) levels and if you fired a 100 QL corpse or pile of rocks at a wall, it would only do so much damage to a high QL wall…often taking multiple launchings to even take down a wall anyway. So everything that goes into this is really complex, but then factor in that you probably have retaliation of some type heading your way, and catapults aren’t very effective without protection. This type of game requires a lot of people working together…and I imagine in today’s day and age where people are all popping each-other with 1-3 shots…this kind of effort won’t happen that much, as your average gamer takes the ‘easiest’ way to do something…this type of thing is usually just used in PvP games to attack someone who’s not even logged in, bust in, loot their stuff, and run away…all while they aren’t there to actually defend their stuff. I sure hope he’s putting in mechanics that thwart that kind of behavior, because I know I sure as heck would quit if I logged in to find all my hard work just gone…and that would demolish the player-base with relative ease…

Personally, after reading about this game off/on, it’s not my cup of tea, but I do wish him well in the endeavor.

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Oleg Chebeneev

Solving real problems

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Mark Jacobs

OC! Where have you been buddy, it’s been a while!

Let’s see, we are working on adding ragdoll physics which, if implemented fully (and properly of course) saves our animators time, adds things like head and body tracking (toon-based, not real world), arm hierarchy tracking (pointing, from shoulder to fingertip) and full body aiming and a whole lot of fun.

I think this counts as real problems, don’t you? Now, if all we were doing is the corpse chucking itself (which, BTW, we haven’t touched the code in a while), you might be right. OTOH, what we are working on is the ragdolling code, not the corpse chucking. And if speeding up the delivery of the game while at the same time adding a more fun and immersive experience isn’t a real problem, I’m not sure what is.

But hey, as always, your mileage may vary.

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Mark Jacobs

Thanks Chris, yeah, some of the stuff is cool, some seems to go on for a while (Linuxification) and some is just weird (ragdolling diseased cow corpses is weird I admit) but it all adds up to progress. I’m hoping we can finally finish off Linuxification so I can get Andrew/George and other engineers on to other things…

Like making CU run on the Switch!

:)

Thanks again Chris and MOP, as usual!

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DG

That’s just great. Now,maybe they can figure out how to get out of Beta and release this game already. I only have a few more years until I retire.

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Mark Jacobs

I agree. Nobody on this planet wants this game to come out more than I do.

Hopefully DG you’ll have plenty of time to play CU before you retire.

Alyn
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Alyn

A pox upon thee, vile enemy mine!

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Mark Jacobs

Indeed. Nice way to spread an AoE in an enemy’s land/keep/etc.

Smithwicks
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Smithwicks

Thank you Mark! Who needs boring rocks when you can rag doll a cow corpse into a wall…

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Mark Jacobs

Why not both? :)

agemyth 😩
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agemyth 😩

Hopefully, they will open source the code for proper cow corpse ragdoll flinging so that this knowledge can be shared for the benefit of all video games.

Smithwicks
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Smithwicks

A Nobel is surely in his future if he does. It is truly one of the largest quandaries of the modern age.

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Mark Jacobs

Hehe, nice you two! Adding ragdolling is something we want to be able to do in battles, corpse chucking is just a fun example of how we could use that piece of game tech.

Assuming it is performant enough, it will be a nice add to the game and, as I said in the update, reduce the number of death animations that our artists have to do. Given the number of races/classes we have and will have in the game, this would definitely help us get the game out sooner.

Smithwicks
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Smithwicks

The problem was you were making some great progress then it looks like you get caught up in a nuance that’s time may have been better served post beta. But if it helps towards other things then it’s not a complete wash..

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Mark Jacobs

If by nuance you mean Linuxification, sadly, it wasn’t/isn’t a nuance. As much as it hurts having to do it now, it would have been worse if we waited. Fortunately, we’re almost done. Now, if you meant ragdolling, that’s been a short-term effort that the engineer has put in some extra time to do because he has been enjoying it.

The good news on Linuxification is that it’s not something that we have to improve on other than the usual bug fixes so, for the most part, once everything is done, we’re done with it. And since it will save us money, we’ll be able to keep our sub price low so it’s a win for the players as well.