- May 4, 2020
But what lies ahead?
Jump onboard, we’re setting sail on our Odyssey!
What is Entropia Universe Unreal?
Evolution and MigrationIn the broadest sense, the project comprises activities related to:
- the evolution of core systems, such as hunting, mining and crafting
- the migration of items and value currently present in Entropia Universe
Preserve the Soul, Stay FreshThe goal of this evolution and migration is to preserve the soul of Entropia whilst staying fresh.
To achieve this we will:
- Improve and refine the core features of Entropia Universe
- Appeal to both current and future users.
- Users will explore and exploit resources
- The world will be sci-fi themed and single shard
- Users will have one avatar with no class selection
- A sandbox MMORPG
- With a user-driven, real-cash economy
- Based on PED
Exploration: an End in ItselfWe will focus our efforts on worldbuilding to make exploring our worlds more stimulating and exciting. Exploring will become an end in itself!
Gameplay Experience“Explore and exploit the resources of vibrant alien worlds as part of a real-cash economy that has grown over a period of two decades. Build trade networks and contract other users to work for you. Hone your skills and find your niche as you make a name for yourself in our thriving online community of daring entrepreneurs”.
The Holistic WorldIn Odyssey, exploration will take place in a world which is holistic.
This means that each part of our world will have a function and a purpose, with a defined relationship to other parts.
One of the ways we will achieve this is through systemic design.
Systemic DesignSystemic design involves different systems in the game reacting to each other:
- Entities in the game are set up to respond to predefined inputs and outputs
- If these inputs and outputs ‘match’, an outcome occurs involving these entities
A Living WorldUsers will be able to discover the ‘unspoken rules’ of our world by noting connections between world elements. Knowledge of these connections will help users 'navigate' the world more successfully.
On a grand scale, systemic design produces a living, vibrant world that reacts to the user and to elements within itself. It can lead to emergent gameplay, i.e. gameplay emerging from the interaction of multiple systems rather than the intentional designs of the developer. These varied interactions are stimulating, motivating users to experiment and explore.
Creating the Universe
What have we been doing?Up until now we have focused on pre-production, learning Unreal Engine 5 and fleshing out our core system designs. We aim to create better open worlds faster by using a modular approach in accordance with systemic design principles.
Visual StyleWe wish to set a visual target that incorporates the alien feel of Entropia Universe and stands the test of time.
Currently, we are evaluating a general art style that is defined as “Stylized realism with a sci-fi theme”. Stylized realism means we can enhance, exaggerate and remove real-life aspects to achieve certain effects — without being overly restricted by ‘true-to-life’ principles. This art style is subject to change, since fully defining our art direction is an iterative process.
The area pictured below is Setesh, a moon of Calypso. Setesh will act as our development ‘playground’ — a smaller area where we can test builds to gather data and feedback.
BackendWe are building a completely new backend. This work is being achieved using modern techniques and is informed by our experiences from Entropia Universe.
We aim to create a dynamically scalable universe where the game world is regarded as a single world and the computational load is split among servers in a distributed way. All this should be completely invisible from the client side. We are also working with the Gameplay Team to ensure we can implement interesting gameplay utilizing the impressive features of Unreal Engine 5.
Teasers!Using our holistic approach we will create something akin to a Metaverse: an alternate world made exciting by the sheer range of possibilities it offers.
Here’s a quick glimpse of what the future might hold:
- Fully-functional user-driven economy with a wide range of goods, services and professions enabling users to gain expertise and a role within the community
- Single shard universe with thematic consistency
- Properly defined corporations with group characteristics
- Developed background story helping users orient themselves within the game world
- Defined biomes teeming with alien life
- Introduction of environmental dangers
- Interplanetary jumpgates
- Contract system: inter-user contracts to harness user labor as well as NPC corporate contracts (i.e. 'missions')
- Resources governed by consistent, clear rules
- Relative value of items from Entropia to be kept
- More information on resources and creatures
- Ownership (estates, land areas etc.) with a larger range of customizable entry options
- A truly open MMO world allowing users to drive their own projects, whilst including a multitude of optional goals
- User revenue from interactions with user-created content
- Hubs with centralized facilities and features to encourage users to congregate
- Talent tree: visualized skill and professions with the potential to customize towards your playstyle together with the gear
RoadmapWe are currently focusing on Combat and Hunting; with Mining, Resource Gathering and Crafting to follow.
In about a year we aim to have a fully playable part of the world with close-to-final visuals, core functionality and mechanics — enabling us to lay the foundations for future systems and gather your valuable feedback.
We’ll release a devblog regularly so you can travel with us on our Odyssey to a new and exciting Entropia Universe!
Until next time!
Game Director, Entropia Universe Unreal
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