It’s no secret that Stasis was a huge success on Kickstarter (while also being the game I am most sad about not playing during 2015). And with the 2D sci-fi horror adventure being out for about 5 months now it looks like the developers are busy working on its prequel chapter – Cayne.
In case you forgot, Cayne is the final stretch goal of the Kickstarter, with its story promising to go deeper into the mysterious Cayne Corporation and its involvement in events that transpired during the game. By the sounds of it, Cayne will also do things a bit differently, as it’s being developed from the ground up while also offering numerous improvements to the game’s design and its development process.
All of this is explained by Christopher Bischoff in a rather interesting blog post, with the developer starting off things with a heartfelt retrospective followed by the announcement of Cayne being built using a “2.5D” system – essentially putting 3D characters on top of pre-rendered 2D backgrounds. Bischoff explains the reasoning behind this change by mentioning how difficult and repetitive it was to implement characters in-game up until now, with those now being rigged with a skeleton that can be adjusted in a much easier and more rapid fashion.
Bischoff also mentions that there will be an improved lighting system which would allow the developers to tweak the overall outlook of each scene much easier, this time utilizing various shaders and normal maps for adjusting colour balance, the overall tint and much more. In other words – lots of behind-the-scenes improvements that should allow for prettier things to be made faster.
If you’re hungry for more specifics I’d recommend you check out Bischoff’s follow-up blog post, in which he focuses on some additional nuances when it comes to visualizing 3D objects on top of 2D planes. Technicalities aside though, it’s good to see Brotherhood Games evolving and continuing to enjoy the products they are making. Stasis was certainly a masterpiece when it came to delivering a hauntingly horrific sci-fi experience, and while these changes might not interest regular users that much it is good to see developers improving on the ways they handle their games.
In the end of the day it’s also very hard to change technologies and processes mid-project, but with a great game already released I am more than intrigued to see how Cayne shapes up.