Progress Update on Multiplayer!


Hey everyone!

Today we wanted to give you an update on what's been going on with multiplayer and what we still have left to do. We are closer than ever to getting the multiplayer update finished and we are so excited. Recently we've been doing some internal testing and it really adds a new feel to the game. There's just something fun about exploring islands and taking on pirates with your friends.

At any rate, let's dive in! Here's a look at what's been done so far.

Core Multiplayer Engine


One of the biggest tasks was getting the core multiplayer engine working correctly. We needed systems to be able to sync and handle everything in the game for multiple players, handle saving, etc. With a game like Salt, there are a lot of items and things in the game that has to be taken into account. So it was very important we got a nice system in for handling these sorts of things. And not just getting the system in, but getting it working in the most efficient way possible. 


Syncing the World


While there are still some things left to sync up, we've got most everything working. At this point, the majority of enemies, boats, resources, animations, day/night cycle, loot, and armor visuals sync up. Getting this done was a huge step forward as we wanted to make sure players could see the same things in the world. This means if you see a rock in a certain place, then it needed to be there for the other player as well. This also goes for enemies. 

And speaking of enemies, we've also got enemy aggro working, though we are still making some tweaks to it. As it is currently, an enemy will change their target if they are taking enough damage from someone else. 


Joining Friends and Text Based Chat


Another system we've got in and working is the ability to join your friends on Steam. So when you are in the game, your friends will show up as an icon on the screen and you will be able to click that and join their game. We've also added in a text based chat box so that you can chat with other people in the world! 


Player Inspection and Trading


Another major feature we just wrapped up is the ability to inspect and trade with other players. Now, you'll be able to interact with another player and see what gear they have on. In addition to that, you'll be able to initiate a trade with them and trade various items. This can be a particularly useful way to speed up progression when playing together or help encourage different playstyles. So if you're going for a more stealth based light armor character and you come across a big piece of heavy armor, you might want to consider giving them to your friend to help them out! 



What's Left To Do? 


While we've got the vast majority of major features in and implemented, we've still got some other areas we need to finish up. Here's a list of some things we still need to do: 

- Full support for three or more players. (We've got this basically in and working but it needs to be   ironed out and expanded)
- Enemy power scaling (We will be adjusting enemy stats based on how many players are in the proximity)
- Syncing boss battles
- Syncing player-placed ship content
- Syncing handheld item visuals
- Server options (enable/disable pvp, etc.)
- Wave and point emotes
- Final testing and bug fixes


Overall, multiplayer is coming along great! We are getting very close and can't wait for the community to be able to play together. As always, we'd love to hear your feedback and thanks for reading! 





A Look at Update 1.9.6


Hey everyone! 

We've been hard at work at a lot of different areas in Salt recently, particularly multiplayer. However, we do have another content update coming out soon before multiplayer and we wanted to give you an idea of what you can expect from that update! 

Here's a look at some of the content coming soon: 


Weather


One change that we are incredibly excited about is weather! This is something that has been requested for a long time and we are finally happy to have it near completion. Weather is going to dramatically affect the overall atmosphere and aesthetics of the game. Not only will you get lightning, clouds, and rain, but we've also included changes to the fog and lighting based on the weather. This creates a much more dynamic feel to the world of Salt. 


Ship Cannons


Another new change we are very excited about are ship cannons! Now in the world you'll be able to find cannons and cannonballs at pirate camps. You can them place these on your ship and take out pirates from a distance. Plus, once multiplayer is out, you'll be able to shoot other players and feel like a true pirate! 



Blacksmith NPC


In this update we've also added a new NPC known as The Blacksmith. Upon finding The Blacksmith, he will give you a quest that will reward you with a new pickaxe. With this new pickaxe you'll be able to occasionally mine obsidian ore from various rocks. You can then turn this obsidian in to The Blacksmith for unique rewards. In addition to that, he will also sell salvage tools that will allow you to salvage certain weapons for resources. 



We think Update 1.9.6 is going to be a great addition to Salt and we can't wait to get it out! We will give another update soon on when you can expect that update to hit Steam. Also, we just want you to let you know that multiplayer is coming along great. We've got a lot of great functionalities in and working. We will post a blog in the next week or two showcasing what we've got working so far and what's left to go. 


As always, we appreciate your support and would love to hear your feedback! 



Dev Update: Ship Cannons, Clouds, and The Blacksmith


Ahoy mateys!

We wanted to give you a quick update as to what we've been doing at Lavaboots. First and foremost we've been working on multiplayer. We are making some great progress in that regard and it's getting closer than ever. Expect a blog post with more details on that in the coming weeks. 

While working on multiplayer we've also added in some other content. Here's a look at some of the new content you can expect soon! 


Ship Cannons


Pretty soon you'll be able to put cannons on your ships and shoot pirates from afar! We made this specifically in mind for multiplayer, however. The cannons do an area of effect damage so when you see other players sailing at sea you can let loose a bombardment of cannons on them. Or befriend them. Whatever works right?


We're also adding some unique cannonballs that are basically fireworks. These are meant strictly for visuals but add a fun little side element to the game. 


Clouds


We have also been working on clouds and some other weather aspects. We are pretty proud of clouds and feel that they add even more to the atmosphere of Salt. We will share more details as to the other weather aspects soon!


The Blacksmith


In the next update you can expect to find a new NPC known as The Blacksmith. From him you'll be able to get a special pickaxe that allows you to mine obsidian ore. You can then use this ore to trade to The Blacksmith for unique items! 


Tracks


In addition to the above, we've fixed a bunch of bugs recently and pushed a nice little update to the testing branch: footprint tracks. Now, in the world you can find tracks from deer and pirates. This will actually likely go in as a hotfix to the most recent update as it is meant to be primarily an improvement to the difficulty of challenge chests on larger islands. Keep an eye on that to be on the main branch soon. 



As always we'd love to hear your feedback and thanks for reading! 

5 Must Have Weapons in Salt


In Salt, we've tried to implement a ton of weapons and items into the game so that players will have a lot of loot to earn and a variety of items to choose from. We want players to be able to pick and choose gear that fits their playstyle and gives them freedom to play the way they want, but still feel powerful.

Today I want to highlight five weapons in Salt that every true pirate should try and obtain.


Bow of Poison


First off, if you don't have a bow, you're going to want to get yourself a bow. Not only are they useful for hunting deer, but they allow you to get a head start by damaging pirates from a distance. The Bow of Poison is a particularly useful bow because arrows shot from it will sometimes be poisoned, dealing even more damage over time to your enemies.


Gigantic Mouth Sea Bass


Okay, admittedly this "weapon" doesn't do that much physical damage. But it does however do a ton of damage to one's pride. I mean, no one wants to get slapped by a fish right? For now you can go around slapping pirates with this large fish. Once multiplayer is implemented you'll definitely want to slap other players with the fish. It's a no brainer really. 


Blood Jungle


Here we have another great damage over time weapon. Blood Jungle is a one handed sword but is still pretty powerful in it's base attacks. However, it also has a chance to do a bleed effect on enemy which does damage over time. 


Treasure Hunter's Scimitar


This legendary scimitar is a great weapon to have when searching for treasure. Whenever you are near a grave site, the scimitar will make a ringing sound alerting you. And of course grave sites contain various loot boxes and sometimes very rare ceremonial loot boxes with really nice gear, making this weapon very handy for finding rare loot. 


Ancient Skull Staff


The Ancient Skull Staff is one of the few weapons in the game that can do an area of effect damage, making it very useful when fighting multiple enemies at once. Using it's area effect does consume a small blood vial though so you'll have to have a few of those on hand, but if you do it can do some good AOE damage. 



So there you have it: five must have weapons in Salt. Some of these can quite difficult to get so don't fret if you don't have them that. If you want to know how to get them, be sure and check the Salt Wiki for more information!


Three Fun Things To Try In Salt


In Salt, there's the obvious things to do: sail, fight pirates, quest, and general adventuring. However, we've tried to sprinkle in a few fun and interesting things in the game. Today I want to go over three things you should try in Salt if you haven't already!

Number 1: Use Bombs


If you haven't yet, you should try using bombs. You can craft bombs using hardstone ore, volatile ore, cloth, and a plant fiber, or you can find them by fishing up flotsam or buying them from a merchant. Bombs are useful for a number of things, including taking down pirates. Do be careful when using them though as they have an area of effect damage that can hurt you if you are too close! 

Oh yeah, and fireworks...

Number 2: Climb A Really Tall Mountain


Sometimes in Salt you'll come across an island with a really tall mountain. It can be a fun challenge to try to make it to the top, and if you are having trouble you can use climbing potions or a climbing rope to help you scale the steep parts. Plus, tall areas of the game have an exclusive flower type called a hightop bloom that can be used to make a potion with strength capabilities!


Number 3: Glide Like A Bird


If you haven't found him yet, there's a big bird in the game that rarely spawns called "Old Blue." He has a chance to drop a nice cloak that gives you the ability to glide. This can be particularly fun to do from a tall mountain. Plus you can shoot arrows or drop bombs while gliding. 


Well there you have it. Three fun things to do in Salt you might not have tried. But what about you? What do you like to do in Salt? 



Update 1.9.5 - Birds of Paradise is Now Available!


Hey everyone!

You can now download Update 1.9.5 - Birds of Paradise! This a huge update we've been working on for a while and are very excited to finally have it out. Just as a reminder we are still working hard on multiplayer and will be updating you on that progress soon!

Here's a look at what you can expect in Update 1.9.5.


Birds


A major change in this update is the introduction of new wildlife. Now when you are exploring islands you will see various birds flying above the trees. Though it's quite a challenge, these birds can be shot down and you can use their feathers to make items and trade for good gear. Overall we feel birds add not only new content but a new sense of atmosphere to the game. 


Sea Treasure


You've been asking for more ocean content for quite some time and we are finally happy to take a step in that direction! Now out in the ocean you can find little glowing rings that indicate sea treasure. Once you have a treasure grabber (you can get one from a new NPC) you'll be able to dig up sunken treasure! There's different tiers of treasure with increasingly rare loot as well. 


Challenge Chests


Now on pirate and natural islands you will be able to find challenge chests! We are really excited about these chests as they give a repeatable challenge with nice loot. Basically the way these work is you have to kill either all the pirates or all the deer on an island for them to unlock. The pirate challenge chests also increase in rarity for higher tiered pirate islands and as such drop better loot. 

Abandoned Campsites


As a new piece of island content we have added abandoned campsites. You can find various trade-able items, lore books, and even rum! Look for these camps on natural islands. 


New NPCs


We've introduced multiple new NPCs in this update including the Sea Treasure Hunter and the Sea Collector. The Sea Treasure Hunter mainly goes along with treasure hunting and the Sea Collector acts as a trading NPC for various items you find in the world. 


Combat Improvements


With this update we wanted to also take a step toward improving combat. To do this, we added a parry mechanic. Now if you time a block at just the right moment you can stun the opponent and get a guaranteed critical hit upon your next attack. Adding just this one new mechanic has really opened up combat as parrying also uses stamina. This means you'll have to decide between attacking, power attacking, blocking, parrying, and dodging for how you want to spend your stamina in battle. 


New Death Screen and In-Game Options


In this update we also added a new death screen as well as in-game options. Now when you die you will be greeted with sad music and a new death screen. You can also now change audio, gameplay, and graphics settings live in the game. 

New sounds


We've also added new music and sounds in this update. We've tried to improve the sound design and give a greater sense of immersion. Now there will be subtle sounds that play when the game transitions from to day to night and also when you discover content on islands. 


Additional Changes


We've made a ton of additional changes including new lighting, new main menu background, tons of new items, new boats, new waves system, and a lot of bug fixes. You can read the full patch notes below. 


As always we'd love to hear your feedback!


Patch Notes:

- Added birds.
- Added sea treasure
- Added new content to find on islands.
- Added new challenge chests that unlock when you defeat all of a certain type of enemy on an island.
- Added new NPCs, quests, and items.
- Added some new recipes.
- Added new music.
- Added new discovery sounds and day/night transition sounds.
- Added new boats
- Added a new parry mechanic. Blocking at the right time while fighting pirates will open them up for a powerful hit.
- Slightly changed the content on the starting island.
- Adjusted the stats on some items.
- Improved the death screen.
- Added in-game options, which includes some new options such as motion blur and antialiasing.
- Updated background in the main menu.
- Some NPCs now spawn with nearby light sources, making them a little easier to spot.
- Some NPCs now have slightly happier expressions.
- Increased the amount of weight of all items by a factor of 10 and changed the functionality of weight to match the new bloated values. This means that an item that used to have a weight of 0.2 will now have a weight of 2.
- Re-balanced lighting and visuals.
- Increased base stamina and stamina regeneration speed.
- Re-textured various items to be more cohesive with the world's visuals.
- Implemented some new NPC greeting sounds.
- Changed the clothes of various NPCs to be more unique.
- Recipes that craft multiple of the same item (such as arrows) will now indicate so by a number in the bottom right of its icon in the crafting window.
- Reduced the amount of memory the game uses during play.
- Added boat sounds to the White Narwhal.
- Extended the sound of the Plunderer's Ring and increased its distance slightly.
- Trees are now less likely to spawn around the stone with the skull.
- Adjusted the contents of the starting island.
- The crafting window recipe scroll area now defaults to the top when the crafting window is opened.
- Increased sail speed bonus of the windy sail slightly when sailing in the direction of the wind.
- Upgraded Unity version.
- The UI for the player chest inventory now reflects the maximum number of items it can contain.
- Change the appearance of the cursor.
- Added sounds that mark the transition between day and night.
- Changed some of the default gamepad controls.
- Added DirectX11 support.
- Fixed an issue where the quest journal wasn't updating when you got the cleansed skull.
- Fixed an issue where you were unable to loot an immaculate deer hide from scent lured deer.
- Fixed some typos.
- Fixed an issue where night time ambience sounds were missing from some islands.
- Fixed a bug that caused islands to occasionally not fully spawn.
- Fixed a bug where an island would occasionally generate its contents in different places upon returning.
- Fixed NPC dialogue options to no longer clip through the bottom of their rectangles.
- Items that use the short sword model no longer cast a shadow.
- Fixed the reported food value in your character window not taking into account special foods.
- Fixed boats being stuck in the air after coming back from far away.
- Fixed bug with the white deer set bonus.
- Fixed loading screen appearing quickly without a center image when starting the game in an area with no islands.
- Slowed down the deer death animation.




Update 1.9.5 Birds of Paradise - now on the Steam Testing Branch!


Hey everyone!

Update 1.9.5 is now available on the testing branch! Please consider opting into the testing branch and helping us find any last minute issues before we push to the official branch. If you're not already on the testing branch and would like to be, follow the instructions here.

We are very excited about this update as it introduces a lot of new content and general improvements to the game. With this update we've added birds to islands, new challenge chests, sea treasure, new NPCs and quests, new sounds and music, and a lot more.

Here's a list of the current patch notes:


Update 1.9.5 Patch Notes



CHANGES:

- Added birds.
- Added sea treasure
- Added new content to find on islands.
- Added new challenge chests that unlock when you defeat all of a certain type of enemy on an island.
- Added new NPCs, quests, and items.
- Added some new recipes.
- Added new music.
- Added new discovery sounds and day/night transition sounds.
- Added new boats
- Added a new parry mechanic. Blocking at the right time while fighting pirates will open them up for a powerful hit.
- Slightly changed the content on the starting island.
- Adjusted the stats on some items.
- Improved the death screen.
- Added in-game options, which includes some new options such as motion blur and antialiasing.
- Updated background in the main menu.
- Some NPCs now spawn with nearby light sources, making them a little easier to spot.
- Some NPCs now have slightly happier expressions.
- Increased the amount of weight of all items by a factor of 10 and changed the functionality of weight to match the new bloated values. This means that an item that used to have a weight of 0.2 will now have a weight of 2.
- Re-balanced lighting and visuals.
- Increased base stamina and stamina regeneration speed.
- Re-textured various items to be more cohesive with the world's visuals.
- Implemented some new NPC greeting sounds.
- Changed the clothes of various NPCs to be more unique.
- Recipes that craft multiple of the same item (such as arrows) will now indicate so by a number in the bottom right of its icon in the crafting window.
- Reduced the amount of memory the game uses during play.
- Added boat sounds to the White Narwhal.
- Extended the sound of the Plunderer's Ring and increased its distance slightly.
- Trees are now less likely to spawn around the stone with the skull.
- Adjusted the contents of the starting island.
- The crafting window recipe scroll area now defaults to the top when the crafting window is opened.
- Increased sail speed bonus of the windy sail slightly when sailing in the direction of the wind.
- Upgraded Unity version.
- The UI for the player chest inventory now reflects the maximum number of items it can contain.
- Change the appearance of the cursor.
- Added sounds that mark the transition between day and night.
- Changed some of the default gamepad controls.
- Added DirectX11 support.

FIXES:

- Fixed an issue where the quest journal wasn't updating when you got the cleansed skull.
- Fixed an issue where you were unable to loot an immaculate deer hide from scent lured deer.
- Fixed some typos.
- Fixed an issue where night time ambience sounds were missing from some islands.
- Fixed a bug that caused islands to occasionally not fully spawn.
- Fixed a bug where an island would occasionally generate its contents in different places upon returning.
- Fixed NPC dialogue options to no longer clip through the bottom of their rectangles.
- Items that use the short sword model no longer cast a shadow.
- Fixed the reported food value in your character window not taking into account special foods.
- Fixed boats being stuck in the air after coming back from far away.
- Fixed bug with the white deer set bonus.
- Fixed loading screen appearing quickly without a center image when starting the game in an area with no islands.
- Slowed down the deer death animation.