Dead Wake Version 0.7 Out (And Some Lessons Learned)

In fact, it’s been there for some days now (version 0.7.6), and since I didn’t mention it earlier, I mention it now. Those interested in seeing how the Dead Wake zombie game is progressing are welcomed to check out the newest demo.

Even though this version is rough and contains some crash bugs, I must say that I was very pleased to actually get that version done – and get it out. I’ve got some good feedback, people have found bugs that I’ve fixed, and overall I got some information about how it works.

I’ve also got reports on some compatibility issues – some of which already have been fixed. I’ve adjusted the possibility to change brightness (which is a big issue since you cannot play if it’s too dark) and made other configurable possibilities in the settings file.

It has also helped me to continue with the version 0.8.

Getting releases out (whether they be screenshots, videos or demos) is good for development.

Juuso Hietalahti


  1. Oh, and the shadows off the zombies are really creepy. I still suggest a directional light, even if you disable shadows on it and make it very faint, because it will enhance the geometry a lot more.

  2. I like it a lot.

    I suggest doing a test to see if each zombie is culled before you animate it, using EntityCulled(). That way the engine doesn’t have to calculate all the matrices for offscreen zombies. If there is any noticable delay, I can add a pre-render entity callback during which animation could be performed. My guess is right now your limiting factor is the animation of all those zombies, because the program slowed down as I got dozens and dozens of the little buggers, even when they were offscreen.

    You might want to increase the shadowmap offset of the flashlight. It seems to get a little shadow acne at times. Increasing the shadowmap resolution will also do this, but the shadows already look pretty sharp.

    Entity colors are unique per entity, even with instanced stuff, so you might be able to do something clever with the zombie pixel shader using colors. I don’t think colored zombies are a good idea, but maybe parts of the texture can be colored, using an alpha channel to control the influence. Then you could have a range of green and brown zombies, at no extra cost.

  3. I already tried this version(I think), and posted the log file in the deadwake forums.
    I think my graphics card is too old or does not support SM3

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