Workshop ALPHA is live!

22nd Sep, 2016

Hello fellow Humans.

It is exactly two months since the game was launched and it is the first day of our journey together. Because today, I am super excited to bring the long awaited workshop functionality to Human: Fall Flat.

Let’s start with the basics. The goal of this initial build is exposing a limited but complete functionality together with guides that will enable you to create rigidbody based parkour levels. A few assets from the actual game are included: buttons, pressure plates, automatic doors, indicator lights and the beloved exit sign! When combined with Unity primitives and custom models you can create levels similar to Mansion, Train, Carry or the Mountain.

Eventually, more functionality of the game will be exposed consisting of motors, ropes, breakable things, etc. as well as the tools to create the soundscape. Also the library of props will be expanded to empower those of you who have no modelling skills creating fun and good looking levels.

I’m rewriting all the components for Workshop use as they are quite user unfriendly in the actual game, meaning you have to tweak all the settings to get them right. And they have A LOT of settings – some redundant, some working totally opposite to how you’d expect, others make no sense unless you know how the algorithms behind those components work.

For this release I have focused on the following areas:

• Making it very fast to create and iterate a level, and then test it out in the game. I wish I had the tool when I created the original content. For example, after adjusting some gaps I had to rebuild the whole game, get to correct checkpoint and navigate to the area in question. Now I can simply select “reload level” from the pause menu and it replaces the level around you.
• Exposing essentials like a level, checkpoint, fall triggers, level pass triggers,
• Make very clean and intuitive API for things that get exposed. Again rigging a button is super simple – you choose its behaviour, how much force it will provide as feedback and its travel distance. In original game I was tweaking every type of button and door by manipulating joint properties and trying to get these parameters right by testing forever.
• Getting a solid signal framework – levels are rigged using a signal framework that communicates between components. As the framework evolved, I totally changed the architecture a couple of times, and was adding more things without trying to be overly consistent. So I have like five different behaviours for different buttons each suited for a particular need, and you don’t want to know how many different servo motor implementations there are (loads).
• Based on that framework, exposing the most essential components – interpolation for light intensity, interpolation for emission textures, automated doors and the buttons (wall buttons, pressure plates, or custom buttons) which can interact with physics and/or touch, and expose different behaviours like switches (one button switches the signal and on another off), activate while pressed (e.g. pressure plate), or toggles (e.g. elevator buttons in the current game).

I will try making the new levels using the workshop tools – in the end you should be creating at least as good levels as they are in the game, and using your imagination even better ones.

To take part in the Workshop beta, you will need to enroll in this group: http://steamcommunity.com/groups/humanworkshop – further instructions and guides can be found there.

I can’t wait to see your dreamscapes. Have fun!

Tomas

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