Spareware is built on complex randomisation and generation systems and tweaking those took a lot of time in the development. We summoned the programmer, Ville Siuruainen to reveal what's going on 'under the hood' of Spareware.
Spareware uses procedural generation. What does it mean?
It means, that some of the content in the game is created using algorithms that are based on certain rules and limitations. With generation like this we get the advantage of being able to create almost infinite amounts of content with very little data.
What is generated in Spareware this way?
The maps in in Spareware are procedurally generated. First the street layouts are generated and on top of those the 3D-models for the streets are created. Then the buildings are created with algorithms to side the streets. Finally all the different props made by the artists are sprinkled around to the streets and the walls. When the visual generation is done, the AI will receive it's navigation data. All of this happens during the loading screen.
What are those certain rules that the algorithms use?
When the map is generated, the game uses randomly selected reference data - biomes which define the threshold values to the width of the streets and textures, the height of the buildings, their colors and decorativeness and so on. The biomes also define which props may be generated. When the props are generated, it's taken into account that they won't spawn on top of each other or in such ways, that they would prevent completing the level or navigation of the AI.
What was the hardest part in creating the generation systems?Read more
The launch is done & the reviews are pouring in, thanks to all you good folk for playing! As promised before, we are working on a new patch & here is a rough outline on what we are going to bring into the game. Our own goal for this patch is early May, but no promises just yet!
There'll be a completely new biome. The city of future London will have thinner & windier streets as well as a new set of props on the streets (two decker busses & phone booths, anyone?). There might also be a new map type. Who knows?
PvP gamemodeRead more
Today 18th of March 2016 Spareware was finally released on Xbox One digital store! It's available in at Xbox One digital marketplace across Americas, Europe and on top of that in Hong Kong, Singapore, South Africa, India, Israel, Turkey, United Arab Emirates and Saudi Arabia.
The price for the game is $9.99//9.99€/7.99£
After two years of active development the game is finally out, but we won't stop there! Be prepared for even more content with free scheduled updates.
If you want more insight in that development time check out our previous blog posts!
Next week we'll actually cover the upcoming Spareware update in this blog.
The base idea for Spareware was born years ago one piece at a time. The progression, adventuring in procedural levels, dual wielding weapons all were tested at some point, but they didn't combine into Spareware until 2014. We couldn't work on the game full time until the summer of 2015.
In that time the changes have been enormous. Everything from level generation to skills, weapons and the looks have come a long way.
No more zigzags in levelsRead more
On 10th of March 2016 we published a trailer of Spareware revealing the release date of the game. We're proud to announce that the game is coming out 18th of March 2016 on Xbox One digital store.
The game will launch in 36 countries with a pricetag of $9.99/9.99€/7.99£ or the regional equivalent.
After the launch we will work on updates with fixes and free additional content.
In addition to weapons the robots can acquire new abilities with their cognitive learning systems that use experience in ability processing. The project lead Sako Salovaara is back to tell more about the progression and abilities.
So, there's a leveling system?
Yes. The players get experience points every time they complete a stage. The difficulty setting affects the amount of XP acquired. When playing co-op there's even more variables that give XP for competition and comparison between the players. Things like healing, kills and damage taking are some of these factors.
What do you get by leveling up?
With every level you get, you are granted ability points. There are different passive and active abilities split in skill trees. The players can make their own crazy skill builds and in co-op, assign roles.
What is the level cap?Read more
The weapons in Spareware are made of all kinds of tools, tech, machines and metal parts found abandoned or thrown away around Helsinki. HelOS designed them using different blueprints found in the city database merging and modifying things like wielders, toasters, magnets and rails into powerful weapons. It was easy to build the weapons in secret along with the robots in the abandoned industrial sites.
Two of those interesting creations HelOS has made are Hellwhip and Ebola.Read more