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Planet Coaster, New Details from the Dev Diaries. Public alpha release March 2016

Sep 2, 2007
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OP UPDATE 03/03/2016
1 hour of amazing videos, art and cool things explained.
For people who couldnt watch the stream yesterday, they upload it to their channel.
https://youtu.be/JAItaBmxn6I

_______________________________________________________________________________

OP UPDATE 12.12.2015
2nd DEV DIARY: Rewarding creativity
Theme building and terraforming. Must see and absolutely phrnomenal
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JOAiH4_Wrc4

New thread for new news, and because they have confimed so many things in the last Q&A (and also confirmed the release date for the public alpha) I think its appropiate to create a new thread, gathering every piece of info we know about the game.
Will try to keep this OP updated with the new images and dev diaries, but if theres anything big, another thread will be created.

Release date for the public alpha (you need the Early Bird Edition) is March 2016.
They also made new forums for the community to interact with the devs at Frontier website.
Official website:https://www.planetcoaster.com/
Official forums:Click here

So they been doing in the forums a Q&A with John Laws, the Director of Art of Planet Coaster.
He explained things he is excited to show in the future, and that he is the art director for the peeps mostly (and also paths). The one for the whole game (that includes rides and the overall look) is Matthew Preece.
The most interesting answers though, came from the questions given by the Coaster Head Club members (the ones that have a private forum to interact with the devs during development, that im thinking to join also). He answered things that fans of this games where wondering if they would appear as just some weeks ago we had 0 info about the game, apart from the trailer, and RCTW will flat out not have them when its released (that beta went disastrously bad).

THINGS CONFIRMED:
Here are some of the few details he answered, and other things that have been confirmed the game has in the forums, and other dev diaries.

-The first thing they are working out is the behaviour of the guests. This is extremely important so the pathfinding works perfectly with strange path shapes, they move realisticly, and the management for stalls and rides works with zero problems (that, in fact, was a big problem RCT3 had (the family/group system), and its why the first thing they are doing is trying to resolve it from the get go).
From what they have shown, seems the pathfinding works with big modular groups of guests and painted areas of interests. Instead of working only in rides and stalls as single objects of interests, every ride and stall you put into an area will "paint" the path and a modular group of guests will be automatically interested in that area, and change their direction to visit it. So if you are building a path, and theres nothing in there, the game will not paint it and guests will not visit that area of the park wondering what to do.


-The guest system is completed and is working perfectly right now in their tests.

-There are talking about aprox numbers of guests in a park. From 2000 to 20000 guests are the numbers thrown around just now.

-Guest will not walk through each other, they will actually go around if someone is blocking their path.

-Animations for guests are also an important aspect of this game it seems, as they are giving it a lot of depth. Just one example, if the path is congested they will try to look around trying to see whats in front of them, an intersting animation for queues. Your workers will also became angered or happy (something totally new in the RCT type games, ThemePark World did something similar, not with the same depth of course).

-Guests are going got be of different sizes because they are not resticted by a publisher. Theres going to be fat guests (he says big framed), something that Atari didnt seem to allow in RCT3. Lots of body variety he says.

-And abouth paths, this was confirmed in the Q&A. Normal paths with variable widths, curved paths, and possibilty of rounded plazas also. Underground paths with no constrictions (so just as above). Elevated paths. And then theres seem to be small details where you can build paths under rides that make sense (so flat rides that use some form of elvated rails, for example).

-Somone showed an aerial photo of a disney park describing how the paths looked in a real park. John Laws said that the variable width and curves system they created allows to quickly create some very authentic pedestrian spaces.

-Individual placement of object in paths (benches, bins, lights...), instead of the two sides of the path with the same object RCT3 had. This is to accomodate the new variable widths paths.

-If you are scared theres no queues in any of the material showed, do not fret. They are confirmed, and not only that, they are thinking of making it possible to add entertainments elements to them (like disney and universal parks). Thats still in the thinking process so it could be scrapped.

-Far more options for customisation and integration of stalls, rides and terrain than ever before. Details about these are going to be disclosed soon.

-Finally confimed that you can build your own structures and buildings piece by piece (like in RCT2-3, and not like RCTW where building structures is out completly). They are planning on having a *PLANET COASTER* piece by piece system (so I suppose its a twist on the piece by piece RCT3 formula).
He adds that piece by piece gives the player a level of precision and control when designing authentic parks that's hard to argue with. What they want to ensure though is the tools behind it are smooth and building is enjoyable. This system is already a lot of fun with huge potential for player creativity.

-The team is looking at how you can combine scenery pieces for ease of use. Just the other day one of the members of the team combined separate scenery objects in game to create a their very own Skull Rock diorama.

-Making larger, connected, integrated buildings is something they are very excited to show in the future. It's what happens in the real world and they want to echo the connectivity in Planet Coaster. (Apart from the older piece by piece, some type of copy paste modular buildings, maybe?)

-They've also confirmed by one of the facebook guest animations (you can watch it at below this OP) thats there's tables for the guests to sit down and eat. You can finally make a proper restaurant or eating zone.

-Someone asked about the complexity of building coasters if used only splines (like in the RCTW beta where everyone had problems even building a simple coaster), he said he couldnt disclose yet the type of coaster builder the game will have but that he made a cool building with a narrow, arched opening through which he threaded a complex coaster with ease. The coaster wasn't a jumble of spaghetti but a varied track with tight turns and perfect straights. He adds that the system is feeling solid, controlled and that they are still working on it.

-Sandbox is confirmed. Just a big open grass space, like RCT3.

-Terraforming comes back and he says is better and more intregated than ever (he is always talking from the point of what they made in RCT3, where terraforming after the first big patch was already super deep). Possibilty to make a completly underground park. And of course underground coasters (and mix between underground and air).

-Waterides confimed (again RCTW doesnt have them when its released). BUT theres going to be a limited number becuase they want them to make it right. With this possibly means is the waterides we are going to see are the typical RCT franchise waterides that appear in the vanilla games, so that means probably: log flume, river rapids (thin and wide versions I hope, although the wide is from expansions), shoot the chutes, and some kind of Tow boat ride and/or boats and swans.
Nothing like what RCT3: Soaked! expansion brought, so dont think you are going to see pool water slides, at least on the first release.

-No number of flat rides given, but he said 'plenty'.

-This one is for people that had more fun with RCT1 and 2 than 3 (because it borked somewhat the management aspect of the games). Management of your theme park is a main core of the game.

-Day and night cycles are also confirmed. The lightning of the engine is one of the first things they did apart form the guest behaviour. He still doesnt know how many time will pass between night and day (im pretty sure they are going with the same system as RCT3, where you could click a button to be night when you wanted, as it was perfect).

-Theres a first release, and then they will continue to add things in the game. In this day and age, I would be wary of that phrase, but this guys did it amazingly well with RCT3, giving and already giant game in vanilla, and making it even better with the two expansions, soaked! and wild! Time will tell, of course.

-They started with the game just one year ago. The first thing John Laws created was the hipster guy from the trailer.

-What each character takes in time to be made ranges by the character and if it's altering a base model or completely new so 6-15 days. A guest takes 12 days from scratch ignoring rigging and animation. The animation is shared between skeletons. Large and Small body-types. Child, Teen and Adult male and female.
They are thinking of making a timelapse video of the whole process to show.

-John Laws says he is paying attention to "that other game" (RCTW), but of course he also adds they are making their own thing and that competition is good to impulse the genre forward.
But something interesting he says is that "we are concentrating absolutely on making this game the best sim it can possibly be. :)" Take that as you will.

VIDEOS (will update as new ones appear):
Dev Diary Part 1 - The Individual Experience

Announcement Trailer

INTERVIEWS:

Meet the Team & Q&A - John Laws

Screen and other images:
Character model design sheet

They've been also putting a few animations of the guests and workers in their facebook and forums (some of the are old from the other thread, others are new) Newers are up, olders are down, will update with new ones as they release them:
 

Samemind

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Oh wow, I'm not usually interested in simulation/management games but those animations are quite nice. Slightly cartoony, but not enough to take away the believability.
 
Sep 2, 2007
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All that sounds pretty damn good.

I hope they can fulfill all that because this is hitting the spot for this type of game in all the right way.

I was pretty scared before this last two weeks (so before all the info started to dip thorugh), mostly, becuase nobody (as in Frontier with PlanetCoaster and Nvizzio with RCTW) was confirming or deniying the building systems in the game and all the screens both released showed nothing about that.
Then we discovered that RCTW didnt have them, full stop. So that game can go into the depth of hell, still that made me afraid that Frontier was not talking about it.

Then John Laws started to give clear answers in the forums and I was super heavy to ehar everything he said. The return of the piece by piece system with what it seems less restrictions and a twist to make it more fun and fast is the best news ive heard in a while.
And then theres a bunch more confrimations about underground, the new paths system, water rides...
And what they've showed about guest behaviour is amazing, and Im glad that was one of the first things they did to make the base of the game work like the gears of a clock.
RCTW releases before this year ends and there still no guest behaviour in place (they were shitty ghosts in the beta), its not nvizzio's fault of course. They never made a sim game and 6 months to do it is an impossible job, even for guys that would know how to do it like Frontier.
 
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Another interesting thing i found in the forums:
Some examples of the guests and workers that are going to appear in the game.
This is the first time we see:
-The mechanic (love how realistic his clothes are)
-The janitor
-The Pirate King Mascot
-The Coaster King Mascot

Interesting things to notice:
-Theres a Medic! This is a totally new worker for this types of games. Super interesting to see what it means for the game.
-The park inspector from RCT3 is back. I really hope is more important this time.
-VIPS from RCT3 are also back.
-There seems to be 2 more mascots to reveal (although maybe theres more).
-Its not a reveal panel (its an internal image for design team), so they could be more versions of guests, so dont panic theres seems to be too few.

They also uploaded in their facebook page a enthusiastic girl jumping.


This was done as there are a contest in their facebook page were you need to try to make a gif of you trying to do the same thing to win 1 of the 5 coaster head memberships they are giving as prize.
 
Sep 2, 2007
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I need to know if I can crash these coasters.

It's kind of a deal breaker for me.

Very probably yes.
RCT3 have them, no death though.
But if you see the last post theres now a medic under the park workers. Thats totally new, and could mean that an accident makes people be injured and they need to get to a medic asap.
 

Possumowner

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Jun 10, 2015
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Had a good read through that and watched the vids,and damn this has all the right stuff to be fantastic.Let's hope it all falls into place....and yes,we need to crash the coasters
 
Sep 2, 2007
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Had a good read through that and watched the vids,and damn this has all the right stuff to be fantastic.Let's hope it all falls into place....and yes,we need to crash the coasters

Thanks for reading all the info. Really hoping to play the beat they are going to release next March.

Looks like the Cities: Skylines to SimCity's RCT. I like that.

It indeed looks like it. Frontier knows what they are doing, that fo sure. They've been working on RCT since the first expansion of RCT2.
 

lumi7890

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Man i'm getting super hype for this, rollercoaster tycoon was my shit as a kid,so i really hope this lives up to my expectations.
 

Unain

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Been keeping a close eye on this game, it looks amazing so far.
Thanks for taking the time to get all those answers together!
 
Sep 2, 2007
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Been keeping a close eye on this game, it looks amazing so far.
Thanks for taking the time to get all those answers together!

Thanks! As a fan of theme parks and games (and obviously RCT1, 2 and 3) this game is my dream come true, so im super excited. I probably have more hours in RCT3 than any game ive played. More than 10 years later we are going to have an spiritual successor one by the same team.
I will try to update this thread every week they release somethign at the offcial forums.

This sounds amazing!! When will it release?

No release date yet, when only know it releases in 2016 (probably third quarter).

We do now theres a public alpha for on of the preorders that will release on March 2016.
 

Miles X

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Aug 5, 2011
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Thanks! As a fan of theme parks and games (and obviously RCT1, 2 and 3) this game is my dream come true, so im super excited. I probably have more hours in RCT3 than any game ive played. More than 10 years later we are going to have an spiritual successor one by the same team.
I will try to update this thread every week they release somethign at the offcial forums.



No release date yet, when only know it releases in 2016 (probably third quarter).

We do now theres a public alpha for on of the preorders that will release on March 2016.

Thanks, if the early bird version is still available next month I'll get it as a xmas present for myself. I can wait tho for a good rollercoaster game, it's been over a decade what's another year?
 
Sep 2, 2007
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Thanks, if the early bird version is still available next month I'll get it as a xmas present for myself. I can wait tho for a good rollercoaster game, it's been over a decade what's another year?

Yep, Im also waiting for that version, becuase I dont know if I want to get the Coaster Head club membership first, and be in the private forums seeing the development from close up.

I really hope it stays up until March, becuase buying both is somewhat expensive, and I would prefer to wait a little.

And you are right about waiting a little more. Better to get it right by taking more time than the clusterfuck that Atari is doing right now with poor Nvizzio on RollerCoaster Tycoon World.
 
Sep 2, 2007
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More cool news people.
They've uploaded a bunch of guest concept art, and talking about it, in one of the official threads. You can get all the info here:
https://forums.planetcoaster.com/showthread.php/424-Development-Spotlight

Some concept art:

Character animation timplapse:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CaizmoLDNf0

Character types:
https://youtu.be/E7sCDcVsVcw

You can find more, and explanation on the thread.

They also uploaded in their facebook in game gaphics videos of two rides:

A small double decker carrousel:

A Zierer Karussell Star Shape:
 
Sep 2, 2007
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Gamereactor posted today an interview with John Laws and Sam Denney from Gamescom 2015, why they waited 3 months to uploaded, who knows, but theres some interesting info here and there, like animators of the game worked at disney and Pixar, that the game is going to get bigger and bigger each year, and that they basically want to make "the best game in the genre". If someone has the chops, is Frontier.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KViwRdzDm6o


This looks really promising! Subscribed so I can follow what happens with this game!

Im super excited. RCT1, 2 and 3 are some of my favourite games ever. This guys did the expansions of 2 and all 3, so they know their bussiness.
 
Sep 2, 2007
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They just showed an amazing flat rides video.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?time_continue=1&v=c_Yugi94dV8

The deatail on them is incredible. The only problem i have with this is maybe some of them are a little to themed for creating your own ideas. For example, the Dumbo type ride has clearly an Hades theming, so it would work great on a greek/roman/inferno part of the park, but wouldnt work on anything else.

Maybe they have different versions, with a more generic one. Wouldnt be the first time (RCT3 did this).
 

Sydle

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Oct 13, 2006
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Seriously impressive landscaping tools. This wasn't even on my radar until now.
 

D-Pad

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Apr 21, 2007
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OH MY GOD

[here lies the placeholder for amazing gifs of dat landscape editor that imgur keeps failing to make make]

Yeah I can wait until March for this. Sorry (not sorry) Atari, Frontier got my money.
 

Merino

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Staking it now, this is going to be the Theme Park sim to end all theme park sims.

I have so much faith in what Frontier is doing here. Their community approach is already very good with the game still being a bit under a year away from release. They'll have a public alpha release (which I was happy to fork out the extra $40 bucks for seeing as they are self publishing) ready in March and so far everything is proof that they 'get it'. It's a 12 year evolution of RCT3 in the making and I really think they'll nail it, even it if might take a patch/expansion or two to get to complete epic status (as RCT3 needed in its time as well).
 

Relix

he's Virgin Tight™
Apr 16, 2007
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I just hope we get a shitload of real estate place. What I loved about Cities was just buying every single grid and slowly brimming the land with new stuff and areas.
 

Merino

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I just hope we get a shitload of real estate place. What I loved about Cities was just buying every single grid and slowly brimming the land with new stuff and areas.
They are aiming for park sizes to accommodate up to maybe 20.000 guests
 

Tuck

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Feb 23, 2011
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Holy fuck that looks good.

There has to be a catch. Super small parks? Not a lot of peeps being generated at once? I mean, theres no way it can look that good.
 
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Just came from a game conference and was super tired (second day, and still weekend left to work there), and as a club head member had a notification with the video.

AMAZING, simply AMAZING! It just bring a bunch of energy to my body, have seen the video like 10 times already.

Club head members have and 8 minutes version with more details, but is basically the same video.

The voxel terrain generator is just breathtaking, and the piece by pice building wihtout collusion detection, and copy paste sectios is the perfect evolution of RCT3.

Frontier are basically the gods of theme park simulation. Puttin the youtube version on the OP.

Holy fuck that looks good.

There has to be a catch. Super small parks? Not a lot of peeps being generated at once? I mean, theres no way it can look that good.

We dont know the size yet (the scale seems super big in this videos) but we know that they are trying to put up to 20000 guests on the parks. Thats MUCH more than any RCT has tried. We are talking of real theme park numbers here.

Can I just say that Booty Rattler is an awesome rollercoaster name! Love what they're showing here!

And that confirm REAL coaster station themed BY the player however they want, with its booth, and small shops at the exit, etc... Not that generic themed bulshit you cant touch and mix in RCTW.
 

PaulLFC

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Jun 30, 2010
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www.twitter.com
This looks incredible. Potentially the best £20 I've ever spent - although the video is kinda making me wish I'd paid the extra for the early access edition.
 

EdReedFan20

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Mar 22, 2013
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We are living in an amusement park/roller coaster video game renaissance. Between this, NoLimits 2, Parkitect, Theme Park Studio, Roller Coaster Tycoon World, and another one I can't recall, there is no lack of choice!
 
Sep 2, 2007
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This looks incredible. Potentially the best £20 I've ever spent - although the video is kinda making me wish I'd paid the extra for the early access edition.

I think you can expand that copy if you want, to the early access one.
I bought the coaster head club one (without the game), and when march comes near, will buy the eraly access.
The stuff they have been showing in the secret froum has been amazing. Theres also polls and Q&A.

We are living in an amusement park/roller coaster video game renaissance. Between this, NoLimits 2, Parkitect, Theme Park Studio, Roller Coaster Tycoon World, and another one I can't recall, there is no lack of choice!

The problem here is, that until Planet Coaster didnt start to show their stuff (and wow), the rest of the options where not perfect.
-NoLimits2, is not a theme park game, not even a theme park builder like Theme Park Studio. Good if you want to make reallistic coasters, and super complcited to use, but is more for people that work designing real coasters for theme parks than a normal person.

-Parkitect, is RCT1 (not 2, and I think thats where it fails) just with 3D graphics (and sinceresly I prefer the art of the original RCT). Its does some cool things, like new more expansive management and better coaster builder, but RCT1 has the big problem of no building theming, just as this game.

-Theme Park Studio. Pledged for that program on kickstater. Its a cool prgram, but complcated, has a bunch of problems and its NOT a game.

-RCTW. Is crap, absolutely crap. Its horrible, every game design element is bad, copypasted badly from Cities Skylines. The coaster spline building is atrocious. The path system even worse. Theres no building scenery (real buildings), no water rides, guests have stupid AI... The game will not be finished when released and will have to be finished by the community. Its not the fault of the studio (nvizzio) as they had like 8 months to make what they coudl. Is horrible zombi Atari who has ALL the fault here. But it doesnt matter, the real RCT3 spiritual successor is called Planet Coaster. RCT's name is dead and buried. Thanks Atari.
 
Sep 2, 2007
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Looks fun, did they announce what systems this will release on?
Only PC.
No Linux and Mac, and no consoles. Linux and Mac could come in the future, but its not likely. Consoles are out of the question.

Too bad there's no expansion pass like they had with Elite.
Theyve said they will expand the game in the future to try to make it eternal, with a methos similar to the expansions of Elite. I suppose they will be an expansion pass down the line.

This looks so far ahead of RCTW.

Thers really no game with RCTW. A version of a game, so simple, made in less than 8 months, by a small studio (nivizzio, who has absolutely no fault here) becuase the other 2 were fired, one for trying to take time doing a good game, and the other for the infamous trailer. Atari killed the franchise, just a EA killed Sim City.
Planet Coaster is the real RCT4, made byt the RCT3 guys no less. They now their stuff and it clearly shows.