Thanks for stopping by to check out the latest dev update from the Shark Tank here in unusually unwintery Stockholm.
This week is what’s known as a ‘Hack Week’ here in the office. What does that mean you might ask? Well, think of Hack Week as an opportunity to do something different - so long as there’s some theoretical or actual value in what you’re doing, and have a pitch for it. Some will end up hacking alone, whilst others will form a team and get cracking on something bigger, or requiring multiple disciplines. They might work on something totally new, or continue something they worked on in an earlier Hack Week. It’s an opportunity to learn and grow and maybe even result in something new for Vermintide 2, or even spawn a new project altogether!
You might see a 2D artist taking a crash course in Blender, or you could see QA have a go at building a level [ did you know about - Trial of the Foolhardy in Vermintide 1 and Screaming Bell in Vermintide 2 were QA babies! ].
Other features of Vermintide (and the tools that build it) have been the result of hackweeks, such as:
- The ‘Social Wheel’.
- ‘Weekly Event’ mutators.
- Hearing-impaired accessibility.
- A bunch of internal tools:
- Monitoring our build-system.
- Optimized generation of reflection probes for rendering.
- Twitch Mode 2.0
We will avoid saying what’s being worked on at present, as we don’t want to set up false expectations that something will get into the game. There’s some cool stuff though, so hopefully, you can see the fruits of more hack weeks in the future!
Rats, rats, we’re the rats!
This week the Year of the Rat event went live, where pesky critters roam the keep and a new limited availability portrait frame is up for grabs. A patch has shipped today to fix a few issues that arose with this update, mostly crashes as well as some fixes to leaderboard progression in the Weaves.
You’d think that enabling critters in the keep was as simple as a toggle box but really it’s much more complex than that, and some crazy issues arose upon toggling that hypothetical box. They need somewhere to spawn, a navigational mesh so they know where they can and cannot go and places to try and escape to. Other issues arose from enabling keep critters as well, which happened to have a knock on effect on spawning behaviours in the various game modes.
Our QA team had to build and test 10 different candidates for this fairly simple sounding update due to some of the unique complexities the changes presented - this is more than some much larger updates will see!
A cute and seemingly simple idea can really cause problems if it’s not something considered during the much earlier production phase. But solving those issues now does open the door to more potential Keep shenanigans in the future.
Blood in the Darkness
Last week we revealed the name of the map coming in Chapter 2 of the Curse of Drachenfels updates. Blood in the Darkness is due to come out in mid-February. It is currently undergoing testing and we will announce the date when it is in a good state… We are, however, now able to show you a couple of screenshots from the upcoming adventure map right here!
The release of Chapter 2 will see more cosmetics being added to Lohner’s Emporium as well, including some hats you’ve seen before and some you haven’t. These will all be available for various amounts of Shillings.