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Offline Asid

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Re: DeadStick - Flight Simulator
« Reply #15 on: March 06, 2019, 12:43:15 AM »
Deadstick Release News
5 Mar - Frandroid

Hi future Deadstick pilots,

First of all, please let us lead with a massive apology for the radio silence on the release date front. All focus has been on overcoming some large technical hurdles and this has absorbed a huge amount of time, thankfully we are coming out of that dark tunnel and can start to share more information about Deadstick in the coming weeks and months leading up to the Early Access release.

When is this? Is the much asked (and valid) question. We are now aiming for a Q2 2019 release.
We realise this is still a bit vague at this time but this is a window we now feel comfortable hitting and can zero in on a firmer date as one becomes more realistic.

With various technical issues now behind us, we plan to improve development progress visibility by scheduling bimonthly live streams, the first of which will be at 4pm GMT on the 14th of March 2019. Details of where you can watch these will be provided closer to the time.
These will be a great way to see the latest game progress and give you the chance to ask questions directly to the developers of Deadstick.

We can’t wait to show off more of the game. We hope you are as excited as we are!



Thanks again,
The Deadstick Team
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Offline Asid

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Re: DeadStick - Flight Simulator
« Reply #16 on: March 14, 2019, 02:23:07 PM »
Deadstick livestream today


Make sure you tune in today at 4PM GMT for the first official Deadstick livestream.
You can watch the stream via the official Twitch channel -


(For those of you who cannot make the stream live, the recording will be available on the Twitch channel for a couple of weeks.)
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Offline Asid

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Re: DeadStick - Flight Simulator
« Reply #17 on: March 17, 2019, 12:00:48 AM »
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Offline Asid

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Re: DeadStick - Flight Simulator
« Reply #18 on: April 10, 2019, 02:29:52 PM »
Deadstick - Bush Flight Simulator, Live Stream Replay #1




The Irregular Corporation
Published on Mar 18, 2019
Chris gives us a first look at Deadstick
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Offline Asid

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Re: DeadStick - Flight Simulator
« Reply #19 on: April 10, 2019, 02:30:47 PM »
Audio Capture Time! Deadstick - Bush Flight Simulator, Live Stream Replay #2




The Irregular Corporation
Published on Apr 8, 2019
Chris shows us how he captured audio for the game and a few other new features.
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Offline Asid

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Re: DeadStick - Flight Simulator
« Reply #20 on: May 22, 2019, 12:28:57 AM »
Deadstick Sign up for our closed Beta


Sign up for our Closed Beta
 
Click the link below to sign up for the Deadstick Closed Beta. We have limited spaces available, and if you are successful, we will be back in touch at a later date with further information about what is featured in the beta, how to gain access to the beta, as well as your Steam key.

https://forms.gle/1PMDj59WQQK4D7Z46
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Offline Asid

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Re: DeadStick - Flight Simulator
« Reply #21 on: June 06, 2019, 01:11:10 AM »
Update
03 June 19

"Hello Pilots,

As some of you are aware, the Deadstick team were due to be exhibiting the simulator at the upcoming flight simulation show - FlightSimExpo 2019.

Sadly, we have had to make the tough decision to not attend the show this year due to work commitments on Deadstick, the team is very hard at work getting things in order for the upcoming closed beta and the early access release to follow this. Attending this show would essentially take a week away from development due to its location and while we would love to attend like we did last year, our main focus is developing features that will ensure the release is to the highest standard possible while limiting delays.

We can only apologise to anyone attending the show wishing to get hands-on with Deadstick but this hopefully means we can get the closed beta into your hands a bit earlier. If you haven’t yet signed up for a chance to get access to this closed beta please head over to our signup form here: https://forms.gle/s6xm6u9adEFb6Rqr7

Thanks for your understanding,

The Deadstick Team."
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Offline Asid

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Re: DeadStick - Flight Simulator
« Reply #22 on: July 09, 2019, 11:28:36 PM »
Deadstick - Bush Flight Simulator Release Date Update
9 JUL @ 11:00AM   - FRANDROID


Hi Pilots,

We know you are all eagerly awaiting some news on when Deadstick will be entering Early Access so we wanted to share an update on this.

Development is going well, but like a lot of game development, not quite as quickly as you plan. The whole team is working hard to get Deadstick ready to enter Early Access but with various work needing to be done, we would prefer to not announce an actual release date until we can be 100% sure we can hit it.

We understand not having an actual date might be frustrating but we would rather be sure we can make the date we next announce and more importantly make sure Deadstick is ready to be enjoyed as we always intended. As soon as we know an achievable release date we will be sure to announce it properly.

In the meantime, we thank you for your patience and understanding. We have lots of new things to share and are looking forward to sharing them with you in the coming weeks.

Thanks,

The Deadstick Team

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Offline Asid

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Re: DeadStick - Flight Simulator
« Reply #23 on: July 29, 2019, 10:41:50 PM »
Early images of some of the 3D objects you might find in the Deadstick environment.





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Offline Asid

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Re: DeadStick - Flight Simulator
« Reply #24 on: July 29, 2019, 10:42:55 PM »
Looking dishy!
Check out these 3D environment models.




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Offline Asid

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Re: DeadStick - Flight Simulator
« Reply #25 on: January 19, 2020, 01:18:50 AM »
Update
16 January 2020

Posted by the dev:

Greetings Deadstick community!

We know we've been absent for a while. The truth is, everyone has been working really hard to make this game everything it can possibly be. We've encountered a few hiccups on the way and setbacks we weren't originally anticipating, and this meant we had to push back our timeline. Without anything new to share, we thought it would be best to keep quiet, than to make any promises we potentially couldn't keep. This was not the right way to do it and for that, we're sorry for letting you down.

What we do want to do is reassure you that Deadstick is still very much in development. Now that we are past the bumps, we are in a good place with the game and are very excited about heading towards Early Access. We can't promise a timeframe for this - The last thing we want to do is let you all down again. What we can say is that everyone involved in the project is trying their best to make sure it's ASAP without compromising quality, graphical fidelity, polish, and, of course, that raw realistic feeling we want the game to capture. We really want to make sure that everything is as spot on as it can be and that it meets the community's expectations.

How are things going to change from now on? Well, for starters, we promise to be more active and communicative. Our Community Managers will be around during the work week and always up for a chat, and to address any questions or concerns you might have. Chris might pop in every now and again, but both him and the team are focused on Deadstick at the moment, so this might not always be possible. If you'd like to chat with other fans of the game and ourselves, come join us on our Discord! https://discord.gg/deadstick

Again, we are truly sorry for the way we have handled things so far and hope that, in time, we can turn things around and make the Deadstick community proud!

Deadstick Team

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Offline Asid

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Re: DeadStick - Flight Simulator
« Reply #26 on: February 27, 2020, 02:04:22 PM »
Update from the devs
24 Feb 2020

Greetings Deadstick community!

We know that you're all eager for updates on the game - Probably as much as we are to share them! In the Community Letter we released last month, we said we'll share an update as soon as we have something we feel we are happy to show off to the public. Most of the progress we have made over the past few months has mostly been under-the-hood engineering and fine-tuning the design to fix bumps we were having with the terrain. This isn't something that is visually showable, at least not in the short term. It's something that will serve as an underlying foundation to ensure less bugs and issues, and better visuals in the long run.

The reality is, working on these kinds of updates and developing a game takes a long time, especially when the team is a very small one. Everyone is working their hardest to get content out and make the game look as awesome as possible ASAP but, please keep in mind, a small (human) team has limitations. We are not robots behind a desk 24 hours a day - We have lives, families, health considerations, and need downtime just like anybody else. This is a huge passion project for us and we're really excited to share Deadstick's progress with you, as and when there's something interesting to show, which is soon! We're working on a short update talking about features we've implemented in the past few weeks and upcoming features we're working on :) We'll have more on this soon!

In the meantime, we appreciate the huge outpour of support from everyone who's sent encouraging messages or comments, and for helping to make the community a positive space - You're the real MVPs.

Talk soon,
Deadstick Team



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Offline Asid

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Re: DeadStick - Flight Simulator
« Reply #27 on: March 14, 2020, 12:12:43 AM »
Deadstick - Development Update
Fri, 13 March 2020

Part 1: The Technical Bit


Greetings Deadstick fans!



Building a new Flight Simulator from the ground up was never going to be easy, however I don’t think any of us quite anticipated the challenge that was building our living, breathing environment!

We always knew we wanted to create beautiful and detailed worlds that would compliment low level bush flying and have steadfastly refused to compromise on that ambition. The reality however, has been that many of the tools that we had been using to develop the game simply were not capable of handling the size, scale, volume or complexity of the world we have been trying to develop.

Try as we might to push these to their limits, we reached a point where it became clear that even simple progress was being held back by the tools and something needed to be done.

After some deliberation, the difficult decision was made to de-prioritise progress on the gameplay and instead, focus our efforts on the tools. Designing and building new tools from the ground up which are purpose built for the task of populating the world of Deadstick, that can run fast, take full advantage of all of the hardware we can throw at them and allow us to realize our ambition without compromise.

Sometimes it is necessary to take a step backwards before you can move forwards, however this had left us in a difficult position. Many of you have watched the trailers, participated in the livestreams or even had hands-on experience with Deadstick. Stripping our world back to its bare bones made it very difficult to show screenshots of ‘progress’ when, to outside viewers, it would look as if things had gone considerably backwards. We therefore made the decision to focus on getting the tools done and letting the results speak for themselves as and when the time came. The reality, as with developing any new set of technologies, particularly with a small team, is that things took longer than anticipated and the community, rightly, grew anxious waiting for updates.

The good news however, is that whilst there will always be minor tweaks and improvements to be made, these tools are now done, give us better functionality and performance than we could have ever imagined and will serve as a foundation on which to build our current and future worlds.

In addition to the development of these tools, we have also had much opportunity to think about and refine existing gameplay mechanics and systems within Deadstick. Prototyping new ideas and incorporating functionality into the simulator that we had not anticipated prior to Early Access. Functionality we have been itching to show off, but without a world to show it off in, have been unable to do so, until now! But more about that later...




The Technical Bit


For those who are interested in exactly what goes on behind the scenes, the following is an attempt to break down the technical challenges we have faced over the past months of silence and our solutions to those problems. For those that want to see the end result, simply skip ahead to end.

‘Styx’ and ‘Stones’ may break my bones...

The task of generating a beautiful, dense and believable world is split into three problems:

•  Authoring the base terrain model for our world.
•  Populating the terrain with natural and man made elements.
•  Efficiently rendering that populated terrain within the simulator.

We have been hard at work tackling each of these head on with two purpose built tools - ‘Styx’ and ‘Stones’.

Introducing Stones

Working much like a traditional 2D layer based paint package but manipulating terrain heights instead of pixels, Stones is the initial building block for developing and crafting our detailed world, allowing us to stamp and blend various terrain features such as mountains, rivers and valleys together in realtime. Don’t like a particular mountain’s location? Stones allows our artists to drag and drop them to a desired location and then quickly and easily blend them into the surrounding terrain. What was once a slow, laborious and error prone process which struggled to cope with the size of the worlds we envisaged, can now be done in realtime with instant visual feedback.



Stones was designed from the ground up to support and even combine both fictional and real world features. This functionality gives us powerful flexibility to explore different opportunities for future worlds once in Early Access.



Introducing Styx

Once we have our base terrain, the next challenge is how to populate it. The traditional flight sim approach has been to overlay aerial imagery. Whilst this technique is very effective at high altitude, it quickly falls down at low level where resolution becomes a challenge. As the emphasis in Deadstick is on low and slow bush flying we wanted to steer away from this solution and instead represent the world entirely from geometry, where every tree, rock and blade of grass within the world is a 3D object the player can both see and interact with.

It simply isn’t practical to place every tree by hand, let alone every blade of grass, and so a system was needed with which artists could define rules for different surface types and the computer could generate and place the appropriate features accordingly. This isn’t entirely new, we have shown off similar technology in all of our previous demos. What we hadn’t anticipated however, was the sheer volume of assets that needed to be created and placed.



As it stands, there are currently 2.3 billion trees which are generated and exist within our world. To arrive at that figure, the tool must first test many more locations to determine which ones are valid based on rules such as surface, slope, texture type, etc. Once a valid location is found, it must then be tested against all other trees/objects to ensure that they do not overlap. This testing takes time and subsequently our terrain generations quickly ballooned from several hours to several days. Try as we might to optimize this process with our existing tool it was simply becoming too burdensome for our artists to make even minor changes without having to endure very long regeneration times.

By moving this functionality to a separate tool, and by taking full advantage of multi threading and clever caching of previously built rules, we have managed to remove much of the generation overhead and waste, reducing our build times from days down to minutes or in the worst case, hours. This gives our artists the freedom they need to experiment with new ideas and maximise the visual quality they can achieve.

As the majority of this work has been rewriting / redeveloping much of our build system’s inner workings, it is probably the least interesting to show visually, but has by far the biggest implications with regards to efficiently authoring and populating our terrain.



This may look like a fairly mundane screenshot but this tool has dramatically improved the way in which we work and in turn, the detail and quality we are able to achieve within Deadstick.

The Result

Beautifully detailed worlds at any altitude no longer limited by scale or build times but instead, only our imagination!
















What’s Next

As mentioned above, in parallel to our work on the terrain functionality and tools, much has been done to develop and refine the gameplay systems and interactions within the simulator. Next week we shall release Part 2, in which we start to explore some of these systems in more detail, giving you a glimpse into what you can expect as a day in the life of a pilot within Deadstick!


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Offline Attila

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Re: DeadStick - Flight Simulator
« Reply #28 on: March 21, 2020, 05:55:18 PM »
This looks great  ;)
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Offline Asid

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Re: DeadStick - Flight Simulator
« Reply #29 on: March 25, 2020, 12:04:46 PM »
Deadstick - Development Update
Fri, 20 March 2020

Part 2: The Fun Bit




As mentioned earlier, the delay whilst unforeseen, has allowed us to spend more time developing and refining existing gameplay mechanics as well as identifying what truly makes Deadstick a unique simulator and doubling down on those features.

Much has changed since we last showed the game and it would be impossible to cram everything into this update. The following therefore is a selection of some of the items that the team are most excited to share. Will dive into some of these systems and others in much more detail within future updates!

Living world


Biomes

Whilst much of our focus has been on the underlying terrain generation systems and improving run-time performance, another big addition has been the support of varying terrain biomes. This allows us to have distinct and varied locations within our world, each with their own challenges/considerations as a pilot. From dense forest to sparse tundra and snow capped peaks, pilots will have to learn to quickly adapt to operating in a variety of different conditions and locations all with unique challenges!

Environmental Effects

With an environment comes the need for players to be able to interact with it in their aircraft. Be it snow, mud, grass or gravel, we want each surface to be faithfully represented and have a real impact on the players aircraft.

Many of you will have seen the lengths we went to with the Aircraft damage system to create a real-time dynamic deformation system, ensuring that when you see a dent in a specific location on your aircraft, you know it’s there because you caused it, not because we swapped out a part for a pre-damaged model variant. This feeds heavily into the aircraft ‘survival’ aspect of the game and so, it is only natural we apply this same philosophy to the environment and weather/dirt effects.

As a result, each particle of mud/dirt is accurately simulated and will splatter dynamically all over your, now not so clean, aircraft! These dirt effects aren’t just for show however and will have very real implications on your flying, from obscuring visibility to actually increasing drag and degrading lift on your aircraft.



Not only are splatters simulated but so too is the wetness of the mud – wet mud will stick to the aircraft and actually visibly dry out over time. This may sound like an odd thing to simulate, however this will allow for greater interaction of different dirt types when flying around the world and even washing off dirt during wet weather or, when supported, water assisted landings.



Multiplayer

Whilst a beautiful environment will make for a fun playground to explore in Deadstick, it will not feel alive without other aircraft. To that end multiplayer has always been a key ambition in bringing the world of Deadstick to life. A passive experience in which players don’t have to battle with hosting their own servers, configuring firewalls or sharing IP addresses but, instead, are simply able to enjoy the experience of being a bush pilot and naturally find themselves flying amongst fellow like-minded pilots.



Initially planned for Early Access, this has now been fully realized and requires no effort on the part of the player thanks to our cloud hosted servers. Though it can be disabled if so desired, players will find themselves in a living and inhabited world from the start.

For those pilots who fancy a spot of formation bush flying with their friends, we also have the option of creating private/public rooms in which you can fly together and define your own flying conditions/scenarios.



Whether flying with friends in a custom room or letting Deadstick take care of the ‘matchmaking’ for you, players also have the option to enable or disable aircraft to aircraft collisions – should you not wish another player’s lapse in concentration to cost you your hard earned flying dollars!



Voice Communication/VOIP

It was absolutely essential to us, if doing multiplayer properly, that voice communication be simulated out of the box.

Deadstick now simulates VHF communication and allows players to tune their radios and chat to other players on the selected frequency. Range effects are also simulated creating a realistic radio environment with which players can communicate.



When players are not flying, proximity chat can also be used to speak to those on the ground within the vicinity.


Breathing World

It isn’t just enough to simulate the world and aircraft in Deadstick without too considering the pilot. There are various ‘human factors’ that we expect to occur naturally within Deadstick as pilots attempt to push the envelope of their flying. However, we also wanted to model some of the physiological effects that can occur when flying.

Fatigue

Flying for long periods of time and maintaining situational awareness can be tiring. This is something we want pilots to consider. As a result we now simulate Pilot fatigue. The longer you fly, the more tired you will become. Fly for too long and you will start to get drowsy – vision will darken as eyes start to close, controls will feel less precise and, if you’re not careful, you might just fall asleep! A quick wiggle of the controls can help you wake up if you are just drowsy but, push it too far, and you may find yourself asleep and unable to control your aircraft!


(Terrain early WIP, time asleep shortened for demonstration)

A tent can be used to catch up on a few hours of sleep between flights or when the weather makes it impossible to fly.



G-Force

A staple amongst flight simulators, but nonetheless something we couldn’t miss from Deadstick, are the effects of G-Force and the loss of peripheral vision that can occur by their sudden onset. Beware though, it’s not just blacking out that should concern you, but the very real chance of structural damage/failure that can occur to your aircraft.



Hypoxia

Most bush planes are not pressurised and our starting aircraft is no exception. If the weather is bad at low level and you are patient enough to endure a long climb, then getting on top of it all could be a good solution. With this in mind we felt it important to also simulate the effects of hypoxia including the time of useful consciousness and how it varies with altitude. The effects of hypoxia are subtle – starting with a loss of colour vision, before coordination deteriorates and eventually consciousness is lost. All again now simulated within Deadstick.




What's Next

While this week's update focused on how we're breathing life into Deadstick's world, next week we'll be touching on the tactile part of the world. We'll cover ground on what kind of processes players will be undertaking as a pilot, from gathering weather and airfield information to refueling and completing checklists.

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