In the reveal trailer for Campo Santo’s next game, In the Valley of Gods, we saw two women exploring the ruins of Ancient Egypt, climbing rubble of collapsed temples, and racing the sun to get the perfect shot. Today, a blog post from the water effects developer revealed a beautiful shot cut from reveal trailer of the two women wading through chest-high cavern waters, and it is absolutely beautiful.
The post was written by Matthew Wilde, an English visual effects developer currently working on In the Valley of the Gods. He describes the highly complex process of creating the water physics and visual effects featured in this six-second shot, from a simple concept sketch by Art Director Claire Hummel to a completed, fully functional system of colliding particles, water physics, and lighting effects.
Like any project in game development, this shot was a group effort, which meant he was incorporating elements of the scene produced by other devs. The water effects project started with a water simulation built by Graphics Programmer Pete Demoreuille, which Wilde used to start constructing the dynamic water texture seen in the clip. A Week later, Art Director Hummel created a visual “style guide” illustrating the atmospheric colorings and shadings of the cavern itself, giving Wilde an idea of how the water should look once implemented.
After over a week of work developing and testing shaders, circumventing tricky lighting effects with translucent surfaces, and in-game implementation, the scene was nearly complete. Unfortunately, as Wilde was making plans for further enhance the scene with dripping cavern walls and even “a way to allow the characters to appear to get dynamically wet,” he received the news that the shot had been cut from the reveal trailer. Such is the work of game development.
In the Valley of Gods, Campo Santo’s second game after its premiere title Firewatch, was revealed at last year’s Game Awards event. The single-player game will take place in Egypt in the 1920s and will follow the story of a filmmaker as she endeavors a “seemingly impossible discovery and an incredible film.” No release date has been indicated, though Campo Santo has confirmed that In the Valley of Gods will be released on Mac, Linux, and Windows PC.
Liked this article and want to read more like it? Check out Jed Whitaker’s *insert related article here* and Kenneth Shepard’s article, Campo Santo Partnering with Good Universe to Make Firewatch Movie.
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