2015: A Year In Review

7:20 AM Will Sterling 1 Comments


Hello everyone!

Now that 2016 is upon us, we’ve had some time to reflect back on 2015 and all of the changes that have been made to Salt. Today I’d like to talk about some of the things we accomplished in 2015.

2015 was a great year for Salt, and we feel like the game is in a far better state that it was a year ago. We’ve improved the game graphically, added a lot of new content, and improved a lot of the base functionality of the game. Here’s a look at some of the changes made to Salt in 2015.

New Grass and Island Generation


One of the first major updates we made to Salt in 2015 brought a brand new graphical look for the grass. Our old grass didn’t look very good, and so one of our goals going into 2015 was to change that as quickly as possible. We’ve been very happy with the new grass and we think it looks far better than the original.

We also changed the way islands spawned in the world past a certain distance. Originally, the farther out in the ocean you got, the farther the islands were spread apart. This could result in really long expanses of oceans and then maybe only hitting one or two islands. While the large expanse of ocean can be kind of fun and add to the immersion of the game, only finding one or two islands after you’ve sailed for so long is not so fun. With the new island generation, we made it so that islands past a certain point will spawn in clusters. This means you’ll still hit large expanses of water, but when you find an island, it will be a large cluster of islands giving you lots to do.


Dawn of the Story


Following the new grass and island generation update, we started implementing the first portion of the main story in Salt. This introduced a quest line, new rewards, lore, new characters, and a general slew of content to take part in. If you know anything about our philosophy with Salt, we didn’t want players to feel forced to do the main quest, but we wanted a sense of story and objective there for them should they want to.


A New GUI


Our next update was a much anticipated GUI overhaul. Our original interface was mainly a placeholder until we could come up with and implement something better. The new GUI brought a much more accessible inventory, controller functionality, and even introduced visible character stats.


New Models 



They came. They saw. They conquered.

The original pirate models in Salt were certainly something to behold. Their eyes gave such an emotionless stare as they swung their axes at you that you couldn’t help but feel intimidated. Although we were sad to see the old pirates go, they were never intended to be more than placeholders. With this update we added in brand new pirate models and animations that much improved the look and feel of the pirates.


Jungle Islands



After we updated the models we began working on adding in a brand new island type: the jungle island. This was perhaps one of our largest updates, due to the amount of content that went into it. The jungles featured brand new visual assets, new enemy npc’s, new friendly npc's, quests, new wildlife, fish, secrets, and a batch of new loot. These islands were the first of what we called our “post 50 content.” The idea here was to include tough islands that only spawned past the 50 degree mark.


Stars and Boats


With our most recent update, we added in stars and brand new boat models. The stars added a whole new aesthetic to the game and a reason to sail at night. Along with the new stars, we also added in brand new boat models for a few of the boats in the game.


Other Updates


In addition the major content updates we also made a lot of other changes of the game such as controller support, new lore books, new tree models, quests, in game damage numbers, and more.

Overall, 2015 was a great year for Salt. Next week we're going to talk about what we’ve got planned for 2016! As always, we would love to hear your feedback.


- Will Sterling (Sound Lead and Game Design)

1 comment:

  1. Great work! Visually, the game looks amazing now, I love spending time in your game. Just a quick question: will women ever be added to Salt? Maybe they already are, but I haven't come across any. Also, I love the music in Salt, it doesn't play enough to get repetitive or annoying, but it makes certain moments feel really epic. Keep up the excellent work in 2016, I can't wait to see what you have in store!

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