New loot system and tech tree design

Posted by charlie 9 years ago

If you’ve been playing the Experimental branch of Subnautica on Steam Early Access this week, you may have noticed that the entire loot system and crafting tech tree have been reworked. I wanted to write something quick detailing the what and why of these big changes.

There were a few basic problems I wanted to solve:

  • It wasn’t clear for players where to find a particular type of loot. Sometimes this was due to the loot being in too many different places or because the loot element itself was abstract or overly-scientific (Carbon, Membrane, Rutile, etc.). Players would see what elements they need in the crafting menu, but then have no idea where to find it.
  • Many recipes were very

Blood in the Water

Posted by charlie 10 years ago
Experiment – have the Stalkers eat Peepers when they are nearby. Previously this wouldn’t have worked, as our creatures were spawned willy-nilly all over the world. But now we “leash” creatures to a home position which generally keeps creatures from interacting with each other unless the player gets involved (similar to Don’t Starve).

So while Stalkers and Peepers generally won’t spawn too close to each other, if you can lure a Stalker near some Peepers, he will eat every last one of them, then return to his home position. It’s a start…

Subnautica Earliest Access

Posted by charlie 10 years ago

Since creating the first underwater prototype in January of 2013, I’ve been obsessed with the underwater and the unknown. Actually, this obsession goes back much farther than that, which is why you can feel its influence in the name of our company, Unknown Worlds. I really wanted to make games that take players to fantastic, rich, alien worlds.

Now the Subnautica team has been growing like mad. From just me, to over 25. Along the way, we’ve made quite a few prototypes to help us “find the fun” in this strange game about being a scientist on a submerged alien planet. It’s now our pleasure to share those with you.

These prototypes will unlock at a rate of one per …


Friday Subnautica dev blog

Posted by charlie 10 years ago

New dev blog

We’ve been inspired by the Rust Friday devblogs, and thought we’d try doing them ourselves. Not sure if they will be worthwhile, but we’re hoping to keep them image and video heavy, using just the media we happened to create this week and shared with each other. We weren’t planning on releasing any of this media, or else we would’ve made it look a bit nicer…

Procedural to hand-crafted

About a year ago, we had tons of low-fidelity, but totally playable prototypes (which we’re hoping to release to you – details coming). I was thinking that we had the game “in the bag” and that it was merely a question of arting things up. Boy was …