Troublesome Trees — Dev Blog

This week I’ve been working on stitching together a very early version of the game’s forest setting. My terrain is laid out (fortunately I downsized it from my lofty dreams before) and I applied some simple textures to it indicating the general structure of the game’s forest map. I imported a tree from SpeedTree and have been working on optimizing my scene ever since. Most of the graphical overhead is within the tree, so I need to work on optimizing my Level-Of-Detail meshes and base mesh to a lower poly-count, while retaining the scale and visual fidelity I’m looking for.

I’ve also run into material-related terrain issues, where Unity’s terrain system made the terrain textures shine, no matter what I did to the textures’ alpha channels or metallic values. I ended up changing shaders from the Standard shader to a Legacy shader, which solved my problem, but it feels like a cheap workaround.

Basically, this week, like weeks before and many after, things are taking about four times longer than I expected them to. This is to be expected in game development, so I have accounted for that in my scheduling, but I do feel like I’m slowly falling behind. This is something I need to account for with decisive scheduling and focused work. Sometimes thirty-plus hours of a week just fly by too fast.