Prehistoric Kingdom is a zoo management game that gives players total control over the creation of their extinct animals and themepark.
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June 30

DevLog #6 - June



Welcome to June’s DevLog!

We had an absolute blast this past month with some great progress across the board. All hands were on deck during June as we continued to chug along at a steady pace, making some very exciting advancements within programming, art, and game design. Without further ado, let’s get right into the development update.



June set us up with some great progress on building mechanics and terraforming, allowing us to finally start showing off the new systems (hurray!). Please keep in mind that everything shown here is a work in progress and is subject to change throughout the game’s development!

Fence System

Prehistoric Kingdom’s clever programmers have created the first rudimentary attempt at the spline-based fencing system. There’s not too much to say about it at the moment as it’s still being worked on, but the first stages of freeform and two-step placement is in.

Snapping angle and the rotation angle all works with the expected lovely curves that is made available through splines.



This progress on the fencing systems has made the team giddy at the thought of soon working on monorail building once all the kinks have been worked out…

Terraforming Demonstration

All of the basic tools are up and running so now it’s a matter of adding and refining terrain textures as well as hooking it up to construction in order to flatten surrounding land. It’s still a work in progress, so please excuse any wonky graphical artefacts. Here’s a look at some of the tools in action:



As you can see, Prehistoric Kingdom’s terraforming allows players to freely sculpt the terrain through a variety of methods and tools; the world is quite literally your canvas.



Players are able to paint the terrain freely by selecting ground types from the Climate Painter with the option of automatically painting rock or dirt in correspondence to the height of the terrain.





A cave sculpted out of a mountain.

Create natural archways, land bridges, mountain ranges, and even “volcanoes” by digging out mountain tops!



Unsurprisingly, the art team has been working hard at bringing the assets of Prehistoric Kingdom to life. For June, we’ve got a hefty assortment of goodies to show off.

Building Concept Art & Models

In this update we’re taking a closer look at the structures directly used by animals and guests including shelters, amenities, and attractions.



Science Monument

Placed as a decorative object, the Science Monument increases the land value of the immediate area. Key decorations and statues like Monument buildings help pretty-up your park and act as core locations for guests to hang out.



Large Wooden Shelter

The wooden shelter is a large structure capable of housing most animals throughout their life cycle. Whilst quite basic in its material, this building will appease the majority of your creatures in its modest simplicity.



Metal Viewing Platform

Harkening back to real world zoos, the metal viewing platform is a staple of any park due to its ability to get guests up close and personal with extinct creatures without getting caught in harm’s way. This beautiful attraction offers the chance to entice nearby critters to investigate the tiny mammals jumping around on the other side of the glass.



Tropical Wet Island

After quite a bit of anticipation, this is how the tropical wet island looks from a distance! With players being able to terraform archipelagos from the seafloor, we can’t wait to see what everyone does in the future with our creative tools and map landscapes.


16km² of pure island goodness.

As you can see by the remnants of the large crater towards the north of the terrain, this island’s origins are volcanic – sprouting a small chain of archipelagos in its wake from the seafloor. The landscape is quite versatile, featuring cliffs, mountains, flat building space, and lakes.

We’ll be sure to show off more of our vegetation for this climate very soon, but until then, make sure to keep your plants on!



Both exciting and conversely terrifying, there’s very little interface designing left to do for the game. Of course there’s going to be tweaks as the project develops, but all of the base drafts and UI sheets for the first pre-alpha are eagerly waiting to be brought to life inside Unity.

Until we begin working on the second pre-alpha (which we are extremely eager to work on!) most of the interface work is going to revolve around polish and visualising in-game features.



Two words: editable signage. Ever wanted to name and theme areas of your park with custom signs and billboards? Look no further! Much to the dismay of long time zoo building players, a lack of editable signs and decorations in past titles has been sorely felt.

In Prehistoric Kingdom, however, the Edit Properties window on select decorations such as the vertical marina banner and the horizontal banner offer a range of bespoke graphical designs that can be swapped out by the player to better match their own park. Special decorations like the editable themed sign even feature a text editor that will display whatever is written into the input field. Cool, right?



To help get players right into the action, you’ll be greeted with small popups that provide a brief description of certain game features, mechanics, and interface explanations as you progress through the game. These can be toggled off permanently at any time, so rest assured that experienced tycoons don’t require unwanted help.



Sound Design Preview

Our sound designer whipped up a special new soundscape preview featuring some more familiar faces. Can you guess all the animals? Let us know on our Discord server!

http://prehistorickingdom.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2018/06/Soundscape_-_Ice_Age.mp3?_=1

Music

The team’s lovely and very humble composer (who is definitely not in charge of writing our devlogs) wrote a new track that will play alongside the ambience of your park’s bustling environment. Exploring the Park incorporates world instruments within our traditional orchestral setting, making use of rainsticks, bongos, congas, and African shakers to expand the sonic scope of Prehistoric Kingdom’s music. We’re super happy with how it turned out, and we hope everyone’s looking forward to hearing more from the soundtrack in the future.

https://soundcloud.com/byronmckay/exploring-the-park



This month marks the long awaited redesign of our Allosaurus fragilis in all of its fearsome Jurassic glory. Alongside our carnivorous “friend” three new animals are ready to be shown off: Coelophysis bauri, Sauropelta edwardsorum, and Guanlong wucaii!









Ontogeny Sequences

Our laboratory hatched another four new babies this month (they grow up so fast…) and we’re not sure if seeing baby dinosaurs will ever not be completely adorable. For June, please enjoy our little spike nugget, noodle-neck, two angry lizard boys.









Alt. Skins

Much to the pleasure of our creature design concept artist, all Early Access animals finally have their alternate skin patterns, colors, stripes, and dangly bits designed for our texture artist to realize on the 3D assets.

Since there’s a total of 150 skins going into the game (excluding all genetic mutations like albino and melanistic variants), we have officially only revealed around 91 up until now and will continue to trickle them out over the next few months.















Resource management in Prehistoric Kingdom was first seen in its most basic form back in 2015 with the original tech demo and has been a staple part of our park construction and management since.

Reading about our gameplay plan isn’t everyone’s cup of tea, but with our road map laid out in our last blog post we felt that discussing one of the largest components of the game was extremely important.

Your Island and You

The first thing to understand is that almost every map in Prehistoric Kingdom offers a gameplay challenge due to the weather patterns that correspond to the climate. Although some climates such as semi-arid don’t suffer from drastic changes, others like subpolar and tropical wet maps experience blizzards and violent seasonal thunderstorms that must be considered to effectively build the ultimate park.

One our biggest design philosophies is to ensure that players feel engaged and like they can influence the world they’re building directly. Stay on top of your park and its environment and you’ll be rewarded with efficiency and successful profits. Ignore the needs of your guests and you’re doomed to fail.



Generating Power

In Early Access, players will be able to construct six utility buildings that are used to generate power and water for your park:



Each of these structures offer a positive and negative trait within their role as a producer in your park, with the negatives often directly correlating to weather or their effectiveness over time as the park expands in its scope.

Due to the sheer size of maps in Prehistoric Kingdom, specialised utilities like water towers and solar panels can be placed in areas without high amounts of wind or surface water to maximise player building flexibility.



Making Connections

All major structures, amenities, attractions, and infrastructure require a connection to electricity and water. As the space available for building on our islands and mainland is extremely large, the second pre-alpha will introduce underground piping and cables to setup infrastructure beneath the terrain.

To avoid micromanagement and monotony, pipes are automatically constructed beneath pathways as players build and expand their park. Originally we had discussed power lines and water pipes as separate objects but felt that it would take away from the aesthetics by having large, ugly pylons decorating exhibit sides and land space.

For players who want the freedom to place infrastructure pipes separately from paths, they can be freely drawn out at anytime to connect new power sources to the grid!

Disaster Strikes

So, your park is thriving and electricity production is off the charts… but you didn’t check the weather forecast.

Once a thunderstorm hits the island or mainland, structures like the wind turbine will automatically shut down to prevent damage to the rotor. Depending on how the player is equipped to respond to this situation, there are a multitude of potential outcomes that are influenced by park layout, security, and back up utility buildings. Everything you’ve worked for is suddenly at risk in the blink of an eye, but there’s still a few options to pursue during this scenario:

  • Whilst not as effective in poor lighting conditions, an array of solar panels may just keep your park above water while you wait out the storm. They’re not as cheap to maintain as wind turbines, but guests are also less disappointed by the sight of them.
  • The Water Power Plant is expensive and has a high upkeep, but allows the player to push through the rain and lightning while pumping water and electricity from one location. It’s the most expensive option, but almost guarantees consistency.
  • Setting the park into emergency mode while the storm passes may effect ratings, but will ultimately protect guests from unexpected danger in the event of a power outage. Send your patrons to the security bunkers and hope for the best…

Remember, a cloud-free day keeps the danger away!*

*Safety on cloud-free days not guaranteed.

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And to finish it all off our good friends over at The Isle made this awesome crossover piece featuring their own animals and designs! How cool is that?



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Another month, another development update.

We’ll be back again in July to show more progress on the project. Keep an eye out for our mid-month updates, and be sure to follow us on our social media platforms if you haven’t already!

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If you would like to check out our past blog posts, you can head to the official one here!
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June 1

DevLog #5 - May



Welcome to May’s DevLog!

This month we continued to chop away at the game’s enormous amount of art, make some great progress with the programming side of Prehistoric Kingdom, and art (as we’ve all come to expect). As per usual there’s some big topics of discussion, so let’s get right into it!



June will be extremely exciting for us as we finally and properly integrate terraforming and get started on our refined building systems. All other departments? Business as usual! We’ll be continuing to work on the same tasks listed in last month’s DevLog.



Terraforming Progress

As to be expected the terraforming that we want to achieve for Prehistoric Kingdom is quite difficult as it’s untraditional to most game engines. However, while we continue cooking up the adaptive terrain shader, link up everything to the UI and work out the expected kinks, we’ll leave you with some extremely exciting and early looks at the structures that can be sculpted by players…





May has undoubtedly been an exciting and fantastic month for the art team with all the new stuff being worked on and prepared for the first pass on the building systems and animal additions that will be coming up in conjunction with our first Early Access pre-alpha for VIP Backers.

Building Concept Art & Models

Buildings! Lots of buildings! Next to the creatures it must be said that we really love working with our concept artist and modeller to bring the architecture and structures of Prehistoric Kingdom to life. For May we took a focus on the infrastructure and guest amenities that will inhabit your park.



Gift Shop

The gift shop is your guests’ favorite place to purchase prehistoric-themed souvenirs and assorted gifts. Do not fret, as we will make sure the balloons and the dino-present statue look as cute as possible when it comes to the ingame model.



Food Stash

Coming in a variety of food groups, the Food Stash is recommended for small or medium sized creatures. Its vertical design is useful for constructing a paddock with tight spaces.





Ranger Station

Responding to emergency situations, the Ranger Station houses a car, transport truck, and helicopter to subdue escaped animals and carry guests to safety.





Central Hub

The Central Hub is a large building designed to educate guests about the park and its prehistoric inhabitants. As this structure is categorised as an attraction, it draws crowds to its rooftop theatre and viewing deck. To really push the attention of detail in Prehistoric Kingdom you’ll see a few information signs popping up around your park to breath a little more life into the world.

Dynamic Animal Physics

We’ve always wanted to take our animals just that little bit further and today we’re happy to announce that creatures will be featuring dynamic physics to better simulate fat, flesh, fur, and feathers in ways that we simply couldn’t before.



Our Brachiosaurus, for example, features a large fleshy fat deposit running down the majority of its neck. Thanks to this new system we’re able to properly simulate the unique area of the animal’s body and have it constantly react and adapt to its movement; regardless of animation.

An even better area to look at would be how feathers will move on our floofier friends such as the Gallimimus. It’s a far less rigid movement and helps to envision how we imagined these critters moving with fluffy integument.







Animation

With fifty creatures currently learning how to walk we stepped back for a moment to assess how we were going to cover such a vast range of animals in the most effective way possible. For us, this means setting up shared rigs that are built around the main family groups going into the game.

While similar species and genus will retain the same general movement style (which was to be expected even with personalised animation sets), we’re making individual changes on a per animal basis to ensure that nothing looks off or imperfect compared to related genuses. As a whole this allows us to put way more detail into base animations and ensure that they are the best they can possibly be for the project. It’s extremely important to note however that certain species may feature distinct animations and actions that are unique only to them, so there’s no need to worry about everything looking the same. Apart from that it’ll make adding future content additions that much more easier.

You can take a look at some of the newest animations for our Tyrannosaurus (large theropod rig) and Baryonyx (spinosaurid rig) below.

https://youtu.be/Zm45tnSI__s
https://youtu.be/SkJXW_F26qc
https://youtu.be/Q7r24RhE7wI
https://youtu.be/rRQI0J1j518



Nothing super crazy to show here! UI for this month was mainly focused on management, options menu, and bringing our old save/load menu up to scratch with the newer style.







New Creatures

This month we’ve got some classic faces appearing fresh off the back of their concept art. Give a warm welcome to Bison latifrons, Iguanodon bernissartensis, Parasaurolophus walkeri, and the fearsome Acrocanthosaurus atokensis!









New Skins

Since last time you saw our favorite big cat, we went ahead and made several improvements to both the mesh and the textures of Smilodon. We worked predominantly on the feline’s face, bringing its proportions closer to what the animal probably looked like. Moreover, the model now features shape-keys (sets of geometry data that can smoothly transition to each other) that allow it to close its eyes (like all the other animals we have), but also retract its claws, yawn, show aggression, and even display pregnancy! Exciting times for mammal lovers, indeed.



Ontogeny Sequences

May gave us some time to revisit a familiar face and incubate some new hatchlings and babies to show off to everyone. This time it’s a lizard boi, demon gecko, duck thing, teetho, and a little moo-moo. We’re proud of our naming conventions.











Alt. Skins

Much like April we focused on pumping out a wide variety of skins across a number of animals. While there’s again too many fit neatly into one post, here’s some of our favourites!



We’ve gone ahead and decided to improve our Tyrannosaurus by giving it an additional scaly design, moving the feathered Highlands look to its floofier cousin Yutyrannus.



Allosaurus also received some much needed love this month with a complete animal overhaul that will greatly improve its body proportions and overall look in the future. You will see more of the updated model in future posts.

Like we did for Tyrannosaurus and the following Acrocanthosaurus, we removed some of the feathered designs, favoring more likely scaly designs. In the case of Allosaurus, scales are all that remain, with the two previous feathered skins having left us to join feather heaven.

















Our projected release roadmap is expected to span over 2018 and 2019 to deliver a valued product to our backers and fans alike. Currently, we’re looking at the following structure for how we present and develop the game. Please note that is a rough outline and does not detail every specific item and piece of content!



Pre-Alpha 1 Creation (Q3 2018)
The first official private pre-alpha for VIP backers will set the basis for Prehistoric Kingdom’s creative gameplay. Terraforming, revised fencing/path systems, 17 animals and a brand new map provides a thorough look into the games tone and atmosphere.

Pre-Alpha 2 Management (Q1 2019)
Core and expanded management features such as visitors, finance, security, and resource management will be integrated alongside new animals and buildings.

Alpha Progression (Q2 2019)
Released to Kickstarter backers who donated to appropriate tier levels, Alpha introduces progression aspects to gameplay as well as overlay tools and shaders that will help provide information about your exhibits and park.

Beta Backer Testing (Early Summer 2019)
Beta presents itself as the very last large scale testing of Prehistoric Kingdom before being pushed to the store platforms. Featuring the majority of animals, buildings, systems, and features that will be available within the live game, we’ll be working together to squish as many bugs as possible!

Early Access Launch Public Release (Summer 2019)
Prehistoric Kingdom will be available to the public on Steam and the Crytivo store.

We want to be as transparent as possible with everyone and outline our current development plans so that all of our backers and fans can understand where we’ll be headed. If plans or the schedule changes for whatever reason, we want everyone to be on the same page so that no one feels left in the dark or like they don’t know what’s going on behind the scenes. At the end of the day, it’s a big game. Hopefully this provides a little bit more clarity, and we cannot wait to show more. Features or dates may shift back and forth but in the end it’s to bring the absolute best that we know we can!

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That’s it for May!

Thank you for reading this month’s DevLog and make sure to join us once again in June for another exciting update! Feel free to follow our social media platforms below to stay in touch and never miss an announcement.

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If you would like to check out our past blog posts, you can head to the official one here!
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About This Game



Prehistoric Kingdom is a zoo management game that gives players total control over the creation of their extinct animals and themepark.

Become the ultimate tycoon by taking charge of your very own prehistoric zoo; designing unique exhibits, hiring the required staff, and ensuring the safety of your guests. Choose from a wide roster of classic and lesser-known extinct creatures, each with their own detailed growth process and individual needs.

Extensive Creative Tools


Make use of an array of creative tools to build the park of your dreams: curved, interactive paths and fences, a fine assortment of buildings fitting many visual styles and modular placeable decorations. Customization has no ends!

Create enormous mountains or deep trenches with Terraforming! Edit the terrain height, paint lush vegetation, rocks, and ground textures from our eight climates, and make rivers or ponds with the water brush.

Wide Range of Extinct Animals


There are many extinct animals in Prehistoric Kingdom, and choosing which ones to breed in your park is entirely up to you! The game features scientifically accurate prehistoric creatures, each one with its own distinct growth process, behaviour, and unique looks.

Unrestricted Management


Lead your zoo to success: experience challenging, detailed, and enjoyable management mechanics that will immerse you even more in the very world that you built.

  • Get the science up to standards: unlock animals through fossil hunting, and research new services and buildings with Science Points!

  • Take care of your park: ensure a steady income by catering to your audience, plan your creation ahead by shipping resources and materials, employ workers for various tasks around the park, while keeping everybody's safety and health in check adopting different security measures.

Different Ways to Play


The fun doesn't end here! Prehistoric Kingdom features 4 unique game-modes!

  • Campaign:
    Traditional tycoon gameplay! Extract DNA, research new technology, battle against the weather and natural disasters, and efficiently manage your finances to build the prehistoric park of your dreams.
  • Scenario:
    Select a mission from a diverse range of premade scenarios - from capturing rampaging animals, to ensuring the quality of themed exhibits!
  • Sandbox:
    Go wild with freedom! Sandbox features unlimited resources, customizable settings, and unlocked content to let players build whatever they want from the get-go.
  • Staff Mode:
    Get up and close with the creatures of Prehistoric Kingdom, taking the role of a keeper within your park.

Demo features

System Requirements

Windows
Mac OS X
    Minimum:
    • OS: Windows 7/8/8.1/10 64bit
    • Processor: Intel i5-2300/AMD FX-4300
    • Memory: 4 GB RAM
    • Graphics: nVidia GTX 560 (2 GB)/AMD Radeon 7850 (2GB)
    • DirectX: Version 11
    • Storage: 2 GB available space
    Recommended:
    • OS: Windows 7/8/8.1/10 64bit
    • Processor: Intel i7-4770/AMD FX-8350
    • Memory: 8 GB RAM
    • Graphics: nVidia GTX 980 (4GB)/AMD R9 380 (4GB)
    • DirectX: Version 11
    • Storage: 2 GB available space
    Minimum:
    • OS: Mac OS X 10.9+
    • Processor: 2.3 GHz Intel i5
    • Memory: 4 GB RAM
    • Graphics: Intel Iris Plus Graphics 640
    • Storage: 2 GB available space
    Recommended:
    • OS: Mac OS X 10.9+
    • Processor: 2.6 GHz Intel i5 or higher
    • Memory: 8 GB RAM
    • Graphics: Dedicated graphics card
    • Storage: 2 GB available space
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