Concerning The Kingdoms Of Beasts And Fishes

The uncivilized reaches of the Frontier teem with Creature great and small from wind-swept steppe to miasmatic bog to roiling dark seas! What hold these wilds for the enterprising Adventurer, the industrious Bureaucrat of the Royal Charter Antipodean Seas Trading Company?

A happy Potemkin Forest render demonstrating what it’ll look like before the player shows up with a pack of naturalists and a Big Game Hunter to ruin the gentle State of Nature.

Why yes, we’re stumbling back into consciousness from the holidays and need to fill a post with pictures of stuff so we don’t need to think too hard about being terribly clever. Bear (heh) with me here.

Birds, perched and elsewise

Ah, those devious eyes – scheming, always scheming – those beating wings. I speak of BIRDS, terror of the open skies. Singing of songs of torment at unutterably early hours of the day. BIRDS.

We are building different models for perched/walking and flying birds because at such a low poly count it is prohibitive to correctly animate the folding of wings. Why animate every detail when we can just fake via model change? Quality, Smugly, it’s all about quality!


These are pretty simple, really, because they don’t need to do much but flit around awaiting sampling as Prestigious Specimens by inquisitive Naturalists seeking to enhance their collections and the glory of the Queen.

Butterflies are built of two flat planes that flap about. No one especially likes the bit of bug in between the pretty wings, so we don’t worry about it much either.

(You can also see how Joseph is getting as much mileage out of his grass chunks as possible in these Potemkin Renders. They’re actually a problem in-game due in part to some immature rendering settings with regard to texture alpha as well as mipmapping hurting the detail of very small textures. Tweaking the range at which mipmaps are used helps, but those tiny little gaps between grass blades still get destroyed when viewed at a distance we we’re going to have to revise the texture by scaling upward and taking a more stylized painterly approach.)

Just swimming along, doing fish stuff. I forget why I thought it was a good idea to make a fish in blue water itself blue.

The Fishes of The Seas

Fish and air: together at last! (And not happy about it in the least, from all appearances. Poor Mr. Trout.)

Fish: the soggy, slimy bread-basket of the seas just waiting to be caught up and dried with a liberal application of lye so your people will have something unidentifiable to eat sometime next year.

(Mr. Triolo has been busy creating delightful animations for these — it was a pretty simple set, all told, as fish don’t actually do much other than flop about in one way or another.)

Woolying The Aurochs

What good is a cold Aurochs? Not much, but this is not your common woodland Aurochs of the Home Counties, docile and pleasantly-tempered as any rustic beast of The Farm. Nay, this behorned, robust ogre of a Bovidae is a surlier and hardier beast.

Sneaky Aurochses: change up the geometry a little, add some tufts of fur and extra horners then we’ve got the generally unpleasantly-dispositioned Great Northern Four-horned Aurochs.

Capybara? Oh, there’s one around here somewhere. It’s a shy little guy so maybe for the next post for a slow week we can show off some more of the varied peoples of The Kingdoms Of Beasts And Fishes.

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12 Responses to “Concerning The Kingdoms Of Beasts And Fishes”

  1. Kazeto says:

    There is a game where catching butterflies increased carry weight limit.

    Just said (wrote, duh) it because of the tags.

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  2. Faldrath says:

    Capybaras aren’t “little”. They’re kinda huge. For rodents, anyway. And tasty. For rodents, anyway (actually, they taste really good).

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  3. Ruigi says:

    “best use of dragonflies since Jurassic Park on the SNES”


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  4. Headjack says:

    In the Royal Academy of Taxonomy, fauna are ranked according to the categories Labor, Decor, Maintenance, Savory, and Sweet.

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  5. Xyvik says:

    Love the fish flopping animation! Question: how much do you think these creatures will actually come into gameplay? Will they mostly be pretty things that start Mysteriously Disappearing as your colony advances? Or will they be things you actually have to keep an eye on, such as: “Oh no, the meadows don’t have butterflies anymore, that must mean Something Evil is lurking about” ?

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    • AdminDavid Baumgart says:

      The liveliness and general demeanor of wildlife will indeed be impacted by the health of the environment. An untouched meadow is very different from the quarry behind the pickling factory is very different from the Canyon Of The Screaming Obelisks.

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  6. Poklamez says:

    Will animals avoid sources (or beings) of madness? And if that’s the case, can you use the howling of dogs to find those sources?

    Keep up the good work in 2013

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    • El_Lewter says:

      I thought squids inside deers already established that all animals are equal, but some animals are dumb enough to get squids stuck into them.

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