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[Development] Island Survival - Sandbox Survival Game

Discussion in 'Game Development' started by Quilnez, Dec 3, 2017.

  1. Quilnez

    Quilnez

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    - Intro -
    Hello everyone! It's time for the public testing of my game, Island Survival. I developed it within the last two months (more or less) as part of my assignment of a thesis program. Also as other part of it, I'm required to hold a public testing and to gather some feedback about my game. So I need you guys to test it out and give me some feedback in form of a questionnaire (link below).



    - LINKS -

    Game download links (412 MB):
    - Mirror 1 - Google Drive

    Link to the questionnaire: LINK


    Complete Presentation: (Webpage)

    Hardware Recommendation:
    - RAM: 8GB
    - VGA: NVidia Geforce GTX 950M
    - CPU: Intel Core i-7, 3.6Ghz
    - Available Disk Space: 712 MB

    Software Requirements:
    - OS: Windows 7/8/8.1/10/Vista
    - DirectX 11+


    - Media -
    Barbeque.jpg Weather.jpg s1.jpg s2.jpg s6.jpg s7.jpg

     
    Last edited: Dec 9, 2017
  2. Quilnez

    Quilnez

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    Hello everyone! It's now time for the public testing! I've updated the main post, check it out!
     
  3. GhostWolf

    GhostWolf

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    I don't know exactly what type of feedback you want.
    Take everything I write on face value, it doesn't devalue your effort in any way, and you have a working game prototype, not something many of us can say.
    1. The loading screen is long. If it's doing some procedural random generation, that's fine, but show some kind of progress to the user! If the level is static, I don't see a reason why it should be this long.
    2. The game is VERY laggy on my high-end machine (albeit by today maybe it's more medium-high range), and the graphics quality does not show it. Are you properly instancing materials and shaders?
    3. The footsteps sound as if they are practically on my left and right ears, rather than being a meter and a half below, it's very distracting and annoying to the ears.
    4. The walk mechanism seems to store velocity up to a threshold gradually, and then it is burnt gradually when there is no input. This makes for movements that feel very unresponsive.
    5. What on earth is that jump sound???
    6. I jumped on one random rock and instantly found an invisible wall.
    7. You can very easily get the velocity-storing bug that you see used in most speed runs of games. It happened to me randomly while again jumping around rocks, where I collide with them while jumping, and then the next jump I suddenly get thrown forward with lots of velocity that was stored. It happened so fast that I didn't even get what the exact trigger was.
    8. Momentum seems to not be kept when dropping off edges. While very common in 2D old school platformers, not exactly fitting a 3D first person game.
    9. It's very easy to get yiffy collision responses that make you jiggle around, rather than clean stops, when colliding with multiple polygons, e.g. by rubbing against a wall.
    10. The blur that is applied in water is still applied when swimming with the camera out of the water.
    11. The transition between the water shader and the outside shader both takes a long time to take effect, and is instant, which makes for an awkward visual. Consider some gradual transition between them (e.g. the usual water dripping down the camera).
    12. In general there are no transitions between animations and rotations. Crouching, elk that instantly rotate to face you...
    13. I lost health from jumping from a 1 meter high rock.
    14. A wolf didn't notice me until I literally touched him. He wasn't facing me, so I don't know if it's just based on a cone of vision, or something else.
    I didn't go into actually testing the crafting system, but the UI and such looked good from a quick glance.
     
  4. Quilnez

    Quilnez

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    Hey, thank you so much for testing and the feedback! But I prefer you to help me with this little questionnaire because it's quite important :D
    Island Survival Questionnaire

    So regarding to your feedback:
    It was preloading all animated textures. Most of texture has dimension of at least 2048 x 2048 px that's why it takes some times to finish. It'd only happen the first time you play the game btw.

    The game was built for high spec computers. But in the very last moment I managed to add the setting menu to optimize the game performance. Have you tried accessing it? Make sure everything is at the lowest.

    The game is very heavy because of some facts, like immense island size (more than 10.000km2 (explore-able), actual size is 25.000km2). Total of 35.000 units of trees and foliages (6.500 of them are interactible). And there are more than 200 animals. It's not like I haven't optimized it tho, well, I have, a lot of them. But Unity just wasn't natively meant to handle that amount of objects. It'd require extra optimization techniques like terrain clustering, etc. Which would take some times to achieve.

    I'll improve it later!

    I'll look into that.

    It prevents player from climbing up cliffs.

    Yes, the movement needs a lot of works.

    That's a very strange bug. It's probably due to low frame rate.

    Yes, there's not yet.

    Yes animals have their own vision and hunger. They won't attack you if not hungry.

    Thanks again for testing it out! But please consider to answer the questionnaire. :D
     
  5. GhostWolf

    GhostWolf

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    Look at it like this - my hardware can very easily run Crysis on the highest settings at 60FPS. While Crysis isn't the heaviest game (as much as it was hyped to be), I think you can agree with me that its graphics are more advanced than yours. Your game seems to run for me at ~20-25FPS (just based on the feeling, didn't actually test it) on medium settings at best.

    I have some experience with UDK and UE4, but not really with Unity.
    Still, most concepts are shared.
    Due to culling, it doesn't generally matter if there are 500k trees if I only see 30 of them.
    Instancing materials and shaders is something that people seem to not know about for some reason, while being a huge performance consideration. Are you using it?

    I really can't see anything else that could hurt performance that much. Even if your shaders would be ridiculously complex, with the amount of polygons rendered to the screen, I doubt the shaders will ever become a bottleneck, unless you are doing some extremely complex deferred rendering not yet seen in any game.

    About loading - if you are generating things that's fine, but consider showing the user some sign of life.

    I don't understand the response about falling off edges - if I run and fall off a wall, I expect to keep my momentum and go forward, it's very weird to suddenly completely halt and fall straight down. I am not sure how that's related to climbing on edges.
     
  6. GhostWolf

    GhostWolf

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    Just for clarification - I cannot think of anything else rendering-wise that will hurt performance so much.
    Obviously there's also the logic side, which I know nothing about, but again, cannot be at this point more complex than AAA games that easily run at 60FPS on my computer.
     
  7. Quilnez

    Quilnez

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    AAA games must have been optimized for years by team of highly experienced developers, while mine is only two months old developed by me only (this game didn't exist two months ago), and the time is running out. I've done what I can do to optimize the game in the very last moments, but obviously there are still A LOT of things needing improvements. But as matter of fact, before optimization, in my PC the game also runs at 20-22 FPS at lowest setting, but now it runs at 45 - 55 FPS.

    Try disabling the skybox, it costs a lot of performance (it's not mine btw).
     
  8. Quilnez

    Quilnez

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    I have experimented with it a little bit also, and you are right. But then the fact is, it's not a problem of rendering that's causing the poor performance. Instead, in Unity, number of objects simply affect performance a lot even if those objects literally do nothing (like those trees in my game).
     
  9. GhostWolf

    GhostWolf

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    You are presuming things that can be disproved quite easily - people have made big games with Unity with plenty of objects, and they work fine.
    In the same way culling culls off rendering, it also culls off things like updating objects.
    The engine uses some form of scene graph for this.
    This is all standard game engine stuff.

    I keep pointing at instancing because that is something that, at least in the case of UE4, was sadly up to the developer rather than the engine.
    That is, instancing should be the ONLY way to make materials and shaders, but instead you get the choice (and indeed in UE4's case, this was actually the more straightforward choice!) to create a separate material and shader for every tiny object, and performance goes down to the floor.

    If objects do nothing, they do nothing. Why would you assume they take any sort of significance in processing time?

    I would suggest you to actually profile the game and see what takes time, but I have absolutely no idea how that works with a game engine.
    Probably like it would work for any C++ application, I guess.

    Again, for the given level of detail, be it polygons, textures, animations, amounts of objects, and so on, your game should definitely run at 60FPS.
    It's not like Unity was born yesterday, it's a mature game engine.
     
  10. Quilnez

    Quilnez

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    Because I have proved it? When I disabled those objects the FPS explodes to >60 FPS? When I disable their scripts it didn't affect the performance any slightest bit?

    In Unity there are two kind of objects, static and non-static. If I set my objects to static the FPS will explode but then it'd not be interactible. I'd be very very very impressed to see a game (made with unity) with large world size and with thousands of interactible objects runs at 60 FPS, without spending a lot of money buying AAA quality optimization assets from the asset store.

    I'd take a look into that "instancing". But fyi, for objects, I don't use any particular shader other than standard Unity shaders.
     
  11. GhostWolf

    GhostWolf

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  12. Quilnez

    Quilnez

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    Sorry I don't have times to watch the whole video. It seems to run smooth indeed. But are all the trees interactible (can be chopped down)? Does it have day night cycle? Just asking.

    Forget what I said, setting the object to static does not help, it only affects build time.
     
  13. GhostWolf

    GhostWolf

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    Objects being static is just for some rendering and pathing optimizations, but shouldn't be a complete game changer.
    The Unity docs themselves say you should NOT use static objects for forests (memory vs performance), this is not an issue.
    There is a really big bottleneck somewhere for some reason. Without profiling only guesses can be made.
     
  14. Quilnez

    Quilnez

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    You are right. I did some more diggings and found out that the skybox could use some optimizations. I also have implemented region clustering for rock objects and animals (it was only done for trees). I'm not sure if it will introduce new bugs since the implementation was kind of rushed lol
    Anyway, an update is incoming...
     
  15. Quilnez

    Quilnez

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  16. GhostWolf

    GhostWolf

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    It runs a lot better.

    I tested the different settings and checked the GPU and CPU utilization.
    The computer worked more or less the same amount when all settings were on lowest or highest.
    The only thing that made a difference is lowering the resolution.
    This might mean you are pixel bound, but to get that you'd need some really complex pixel shaders, or a whole lot of over-rendering, which I don't see any evidence for. Pretty odd.
    If I were you, I'd try just having the built-in objects, and disable things like the skybox (since you said that's an external script).

    Speaking of the skybox, I have no idea what its shader is doing, but it's very pixel-y when you look around, and only looks good when the camera stops moving.

    Consider even using the simple built-in stats, if you don't want to actually profile.
    Unity - Manual: Rendering Statistics Window
     
  17. Quilnez

    Quilnez

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    Good to hear!

    I think it can make noticeable impact on lower-spec PC. Well, it does in my (other) low spec PC.

    You can disable the skybox via setting menu btw. When it's unchecked, the skybox will be completely deactivated.

    I lowered the quality a lot. I will add "skybox quality" option to the setting menu in further versions.

    You seem to know a lot about rendering and shader related stuff. And I'm very interested to learn some of those, especially shaders. I should learn some from you. :D Are you familiar with making shaders on your own?
     
  18. GhostWolf

    GhostWolf

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    Of course the settings will affect a lower spec computer, what I meant to show is that the problem is not with the settings being high or not, because I get the same slowness regardless of the settings, and indeed, the same average CPU and GPU usage.
    A thing to note - the GPU is always 100% busy, again regardless of settings or what is viewed, unless the resolution is lowered.
    Since I tried with the skybox disabled, as the rest of the settings, I guess it's not it, although I am not sure why a skybox should be expensive, are you not simply tiling a texture and translating its coordinates or something similar?
    I will stress again that you should profile the game!

    I don't have that much experience with game engines, just worked on a small part of a game in UDK and UE4, but I do indeed have experience with writing graphics code.
     
  19. Quilnez

    Quilnez

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    I will dig into that further later.

    For now, graduating the university is my main focus. I'm still confused how on earth am I supposed to get 30 feedback?! LOL! That's the minimum requirement btw. It's been running for days but even at this point I still have ZERO response on the questionnaire. But that's typical hive anyway, can barely ever be anything helpful even on smallest request (at least to me that is). LOL

    Well, exception for you of course. The game is now much more playable thanks to you! :)
    I will be sure to come back and reach you when it's time for me to learn some graphic related stuff :D
    Anyway, thank you again for helping me. So much appreciated! See ya!
     
  20. GhostWolf

    GhostWolf

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    I absolutely don't care about that fake questionnaire that exists to prove nothing and is only needed for professors that have no idea how the world works, nor do many people probably even visit the game dev forum or download 400MB unknown executables :p

    I can fill it with nonsense, if that's yet again the important thing of so called higher education, rather than knowledge...

    That being said, if all you want is to get fake feedback as you are required to, just let your relatives fill it or something?

    If you want real feedback, post it in some legit game dev forum, but I am assuming (and indeed, hoping) any actual game dev will answer you like I did, with information and suggestions, and not some lame required questionnaire that's devoid of any meaning.

    I'd write all of this in the questionnaire itself, but I doubt any kind of professor actually looks at the answers for even one second.

    /Edit
    Actually I just now really read all of the open questions, and that thing boils my blood just due to how IRRELEVANT it is.
     
    Last edited: Dec 11, 2017