Dev Blog #24: Design and Color

Today’s dev blog focuses on the design and color and is written by our concept artist, Jan! Many of you have seen his beautiful concept arts so be sure to send him a message on twitter @janofalltradez

Moving Forward

It’s been an interesting 2 years and we’ve come a long way through the Vis Dev process creating a visual lexicon to best deliver the lore of TUG.  As the game progresses, it’s important for us to convey the mood and tone.  One way that helps us in our process is to visually abstract environments to simple shapes, colors, and pools of light. By doing this, we are able to see how different elements may affect storytelling in the future.  In these color keys we’re able to define hue and saturation distribution. This also helps us map out color shifts and transitions from biome to biome.  Each biome is unique and how you perceive aspects of our world is very important to us.

eg: Overwhelming expanse of land + Moody lighting/Vibrant color = Wonder and Adventure.  It’s a pretty awesome sight to behold seeing our visual language translated. 


In contrast to the long shadows traversing the sexy curves of our bodacious biomes, the disruption of light in our jungles and forests give an added sense of danger.  Pockets of light and glowy plants supply a perfect stage for you to be clawed to death by creatures. :)

In the last blog, Sir Inkmech talked a bit about the changes we’ve made to existing assets as TUG evolves and gave a tutorial for modding communities on how to get their own cool ideas to match our style. Design principles of our style guide are relayed in the explorations we generate all though the world of TUG from rocks to complex structures.


Just like the hope that our lore will guide you along down the line, we hope the visual language we’ve developed gives you a platform to make an awesome experience.


TUG News & Update 9/8


We promised to keep everyone updated every 2 weeks and it’s about that time again. There are so many things going down in the Kingdom that we need a dedicated person, Cambo, running around collecting the goods to keep you informed. These updates will be smaller since we are splitting them bi-weekly instead of monthly but you get news faster, deal?

Importantly, we are working really hard to make sure we bring updates out faster. They will be smaller content updates, but we want to ensure you that we are not holding any goodies away from our community. Your feedback early on, is important and the sooner we can get it out, the better it is for future iterations of that feature!


The Awesome News/Update:

  • Metallurgy

Our first pass on Metallurgy is in the works and you will be able to craft a furnace in the next update. In addition, early iterations of mining will be introduced to fuel your hole digging addiction. More details rolling out this week!

  • Bronze Age

The introduction of Metallurgy and mining brings forth a new age as well. We are moving from the crude age towards Bronze Age with stronger tools and weapons. Higher durability and strength to keep you going. One pick axe to rule them all! I kid, but that would be pretty OP wouldn’t it?

  • Multiplayer support a high priority

The multiplayer support is currently high priority and we have 2 dedicated code wizards jamming away at it. Lots of technical stuff, I cannot understand, since I would need to be a wizard to decode that information for you all. Personally, I’m a dwarf, so I only care about mining and hoarding all the gold deposits in the mountain biomes. More details will be released in a blog post once it’s ready.

  • Terrain Generation v2

Terrain Generation v2 is also a high priority and we will continue to update the Indev build as we make more progress. The biggest hurdle for us is to ensure we have terrain manipulation working and is stable.

In The Works:

Here are the latest work in progress videos if you missed it.

  • Mountain Biomes in Terrain Generation v2

  • Bronze Age Tools

That is it for now but do keep an eye on our social media channels for more specific details on the updates. Huzzah!

Shoot us an email at if you still haven’t claimed your TUG early access key on Steam. They have been sent out since April :-p 

To follow our development go to our 2014 Dev Board on Trello
Tweet Tweet? @TheUntitledGame
Like TUG? Like TUG on Facebook!
Bloggity bloggity, Al~right~ The Nerd Kingdom Tumblr!
Forum Junkies Unite! The TUG Forums!
Join our circle in Google+ here

If you think we have not done a TERRIBLE job so far, please share our project and news with your friends. As usual, every penny earned in Alpha and Beta goes right back into development.

Dev Blog #23 : Inkmech’s Texture Painting Tutorial

Our artist are always creating beautiful art assets for TUG. Today, Inkmech takes a few hour from his busy day to write a short tutorial about painting textures in photoshop.

*In this tutorial we extensively use photoshop!

Hello, it’s Inkmech again, here to tell you about how we paint and texture! So there are a couple of ways we approach textures in the studio. Many members of the art team serve in different roles or functions, but because we are an indie studio it often becomes important to be able to jump specializations and help out. Since we can suddenly have people with different styles jumping into the same task, we had to find some way to combine our powers and create voltron awesome textures.



First lets look at some high concept snippets for painting the textures pull from the Art Style Guide!

"The environment designs should pull from predefined aspects already in the game as much as possible. Reuse of tree silhouettes, bark shape flow/patterning for paint strokes, or overall use of the S shapes. It is important to maintain a contrasting balance in the details, places for the eye to rest, or larger dark areas that pull from other game objects silhouette."

Ok, so there you have it. This little snippet is more of an overview of what we think about when we paint and when we get a chance to go back and grab some older art to fix up for the new standard of goodness! For some team members and modders, this may not be enough though. So we also came up with a cheat process to get to the ideal texture quickly. Here is another snippet that explains this a little.

"For actual texture information you can source photographs (free license or personally taken) and run them through the filter tree. There are also brush resources for maintaining the look and feel. Always remember the paint strokes and the way they terminate and blend. An example of the filter tree can be found in the technical info section"

Wait what! Filter Tree? Technical info? Don’t worry, we’ll go over that now with some images!

First you need to paint in some basic colors and maybe even add in some shapes. In this instance we’re going to update our rock textures with some sediment banding (send me a message if this is not the proper term!)


Next use zbrush to get some texture/shape deformation or render to texture in max or grab a photo. We’ll now use this image or images and create a new layer in photoshop. This new layer needs its blending mode set to soft light (this gives it some sublte values without blowing out the texture beneath it). For this demo I went outside and shot some pictures of rocks near by……mmmmm outside


 Next we merge these layers into a new one; you can do this by selecting your layers and pressing ctrl+shift+E, then we run through our Filter Tree. 

Filter > Filter Gallery >  Dry Brush  (0,10,1)

Filter > Unsharpen Mask (30-40, 5-8,0)


Now paint into the texture using a rough brush (I personally use a chalk brush) and use outlines for focused detailing (I use a hard round brush here or I remove the transparency from my chalk brush). Rough in other colors to make blends and remember that too much noise leads to realism! This final process is more about removing the noise and replacing it with straight strokes than trying to get things to blend. Cleaning up small little specs and adding larger broader strokes help to make the “look” at this stage.


TUG Update Alpha 0.6.4


Patch Alpha 0.6.4 is here, and now you finally have something to run and hide from, in game. Something that isn’t so bright, but it’s a start. We have a few really neat systems that have come online and its another step towards this big tech demo, actually becoming a game. As per usual, lots of borked stuff, so your feedback is ALWAYS needed to help us squash dem bugs. 


New terrain gen is just trailing behind and will make it into an update VERY soon. As mentioned in a previous post, we are going to open up a second branch of ALL the things we work on, as we work on them, so content will be more frequently shown on that “InDev” branch. Play this branch at your own risk, its possible to splode… but its at the risk of seeing all the pretty new terrain and content on almost a weekly basis before it gets pushed to the main branch. 

As usual, send all complaints to @BrennanPriest42 , Why No multiplayer, bro, harass@camfergusondfw and all compliments and virtual high fives to me, @inoritewtf and follow all our stuffs, in general @nerdkingdom 

*high five* 

Patch Notes: 


  • Powdered apothecary reagents 
  • Saber Cat predator 
  • Hollowed Pumpkin Shell 
  • Pumpkin Cauldron 
  • Gourd Shell 
  • Gourd Flask 
  • Multiple potions can be created using the Gourd Flask 
  • General animation tweaks


  • Added labels to all objects 
  • Objects now have a durability and deliver differing durability damages per tool 
  • The flat rock at the campfire can be used to grind ingredients into powders and used in potion recipes 
  • Apothecary system now available with 5 different potion recipes 
  • Tools can be broken down to reclaim resources 
  • Wild alchemy tables allow for basic conversion of some resources 
  • Eating fruit produces seeds; seeds can also still be created at the workbench 
  • Adjusted the drop rates for trees and rocks 
  • Drops from harvesting objects stack and report back the number of items in a stack


  • Enabled tool tips for inventory items, can be toggled on/off from the options menu 
  • Integrated CEGUI; Reimplemented the main menu using CEGUI 
  • Implemented fall damage for controllers 
  • Crafting and recipe system has been revamped for more control 
  • More game data and logic has been moved into Lua 
  • Restructured game data directories for easier mod support 
  • Added basic mod support and selection through a text file under /configs 
  • Minor Optimizations 
  • Increased stability significantly 
  • Improved jump sequence 
  • Tweaked the logic behind spear throwing 
  • Integrate Lua Debugger 
  • Implement Debug Console for Mod Development 
  • Fixed and expanded the Input menu 
  • Disabled particle-based clouds by default. They were causing too many rendering issues.

Known Issues 

  • Proving Grounds has been temporarily disabled. 
  • Multiplayer has been temporarily disabled while we revamp that whole system. 
  • Fruits have durability bars 
  • Some fruit bearing plants are over-producing fruit and not properly despawning “old” fruit 
  • Spears stuck (and not dropped) in the world aren’t saving properly 
  • Cats and Goats love to get stuck on the terrain and other objects. 
  • The location to harvest Cat and Goat bodies tend to be slightly lower near their feet 
  • Can place items (right click or Q) through voxels if you are too close to the voxel. 
  • When (right-click) placing a Vine Fence, it places inside of the player. 
  • The game can crash on exit. 
  • Weapon/Tools placed in the environment return to full durability between game sessions 
  • When digging voxels, sometimes their collision will remain there. 
  • Curved (partial-voxel) surfaces cannot be destroyed at certain angles. 
  • Sometimes grass billboards can pop out of seemingly fully tilled dirt. This is due to an error with the blending; tilling each area around that billboard should remove the grass. 
  • 3rd Person camera not fully functional; interactions are not working correctly; use only for viewing the seed. 
  • The sprint key (Left Shift) cannot be rebound. 
  • Can’t bind the Mouse 4 and Mouse 5 buttons 
  • The main menu has some placeholder text 
  • Sometimes when resuming the game, the death sound will play 
  • Cats and Goats don’t save

TUG News & Update 8/25


It’s just about that time again, and we are preparing to launch some major content and engine updates… New terrain system, performance enhancements, predators, apothecary, alchemy, and more in development.

The Awesome News/Update:

We are in the final testing phases for the next update, which should be ready to go really soon. But we have a way to get you guys access to even MORE broken things, much faster than the traditional update schedule. These “Indev Builds” will go up quite a bit more frequently and will be all kinds of not working sometimes, but it will let you all see what we are working on, as we are working on it. This way, we can take what we have from these “Indev Branches”, and push to the main game, as it becomes more stable.

So, what’s coming in the next update?

Crafting refinement
Item and objects durability now take effect. What does this mean? You can hit trees with a rock but you’ll have to use a whole bunch of rocks, or you can craft a crude axe and chop it down in a few swings. The choice is yours.

Tool tips & Name Plates
Tool tips are back and refined so you can see durability/health status of objects now. Oh yea! Name plates!

We showed you the art concepts about 6 weeks ago. Now they are in the world of TUG. We cannot guarantee your safety any more as we accumulated over 1000s of deaths just testing it. Good luck!

Early stages of apothecary are in the next update. The Pumpkin cauldron and everything needed to make the potions are in.  With an important one, you’ll need to consume to sprint your way out of danger. There are 5 potions being added, but we will leave it up to you to figure out what they do.

Mod Support
We have exposed more of our API engine and it is now easier than ever to mod. Mods can now be installed by simply copying it to your mod directory. More information will be posted on our forums soon. Be sure to check out the Eternus API here.

In The Works:
Here are the latest work in progress videos if you missed it.

Apothecary and more

Hostile Predator

Potions and Predator

Alchemy & Terrain Gen v2

The Not-So-Awesome News, but added typical PR spin to negate potential rage!

The new terrain is NOT going into the main build with this update, HOWEVER since we are going to be pushing “Indev Builds” out, as well as this major update, you guys will be able to explore the new terrain and see what is going on. And as usual, you guys are free to stream and post videos on this branch as well, we just ask that you make it VERY clear that you are working off an exceptionally unstable build we use to work from, internally.


Importantly, you guys rock (OMG did we just say that?) and thank you for supporting TUG and Nerd Kingdom. We will try to make sure these news and updates are out more frequently (bi-weekly).

Shoot us an email at if you still haven’t claimed your TUG early access key on Steam. They have been sent out since April :-p

To follow our development go to our 2014 Dev Board on Trello
Tweet Tweet? @TheUntitledGame
Like TUG? Like TUG on Facebook!
Bloggity bloggity, Al~right~ The Nerd Kingdom Tumblr!
Forum Junkies Unite! The TUG Forums!
Join our circle on Google+ here.

If you think we have not done a TERRIBLE job so far, please share our project and news with your friends. As usual, every penny earned in Alpha and Beta goes right back into development.

Dev Blog #22: TUG Multiplayer Phase One

TUG multiplayer is in development and it is a high priority for the Nerd Kingdom team to deliver it to our players in the upcoming months. Tim and Cameron are our two wizard coders focused on making multiplayer happen!

It’s currently 3am. I am sitting at IHOP because my AC is out and my apartment is a sweltering 87F! Gotta love the Texas summers. So what better way to pass the time unable to sleep but to tell you guys a bit more about multiplayer in TUG!

Tim Ullrich and I have been crazy busy getting Eternus ready for an expansive and fully capable networking component to support you and your friends in the same environment, building, farming, and hunting those poor innocent goats together. However this is not a simple process and believe me when I say that we have a lot of work to do.


As most of you know, TUG already has a multiplayer component in it. So why are we replacing this? There are two reasons. The first is so we can merge the other powerful Eternus components better through a multiplayer environment which will allow for us, the NK team, to expand the engine much more easily in the future (which let’s us deliver more content to you faster). The second reason is to give the modders a vastly more capable and expansive setup to truly code for the server and client. The road to get Eternus where we want it to be with multiplayer is going to be bumpy and will be developed over the course of several public updates, each one giving you guys more and more functionality and efficiency.

This first phase of multiplayer in TUG that we plan on delivering to you has 4 major sub-phases on our end that Tim, myself, and the rest of the NK team need to complete before it’s releasable to you.

The first sub-phase that we are currently working on is gutting the current network code out of Eternus and porting over some TUG game play elements that relied on that networking code to get the game back to simply single-player. As of this blog we are making very good progress so far!

The second sub-phase, which will require the most work, will be to fully centralize the current game’s state in one easily expandable container that will open us up for client and server synchronization later on. We dub this the “World State Controller”. This will change a lot of core components in Eternus, but won’t cause any regression of current capabilities. We are essentially just giving Eternus a supercharged face-lift to help expand its beauty even further!


The third sub-phase is to take the new World State Controller and implement the key piece you guys are all waiting for! The goal of this phase is to start synchronizing the “World States” between the client and server. This means when you kill a goat with a spear or dig a hole with a shovel, the data is propagated through the network in a smooth and efficient manner. The new World State Controller will easily give us the ability to develop authorities on certain game play events depending upon if you are the server or client. Once the fundamental networking core is in place and connections are made, then game play code can start being rewritten to use the new network and World State Controller architecture!

The last sub-phase is where Tim, myself and the rest of the NK team will test, polish, and tweak everything to get it working just right! Once we are confident that everything is in working order, then we will release multiplayer to the masses!

Right now Tim and I are in the middle of the first sub-phase. We hope to be done with it soon as we are both excited to start tuning Eternus toward getting ready for all your multiplayer desires!

I will try and keep you guys apprised on our progress via Twitter @camfergusondfw

Follow Tim via Twitter @tjullrich

Don’t hesitate to drop me a line via Twitter if you have any questions. I will do my best to answer them. I will try to do another blog once we are going strong on sub-phase 3, maybe I will even give a few hints on Phase 2 of multiplayer and what we have planned for the future!

Now it’s time for me me to leave IHOP and go back to the sweat lodge.

Best regards,


Cameron Ferguson

FTB + Nerd Kingdom

A message from Ino: 

As many, or very few, of you may know, this project is all about modding. Even the start of this project was much less to do with Minecraft, and more to do with the amazing things people created, and giving them the power, and support needed to take things further. Our own game is built on the API that sits on the engine, utilizing this same tools that you all have access to (or at least will by this next update)… idk how much more modder friendly than that you can get… well, yea, actually I have a pretty solid idea how you can do that, you put the founder of Feed The Beast as the director of mods, on the project - *high five* 

The value in community and integrity that FTB holds is astounding. Their very existence came from a desire to give recognition to modders in the community, while others did not even ask permission for things like map packs. This consideration of modders, as developers, has lead to a deep connection between player, developer and content creator; and everything learned from this is invaluable to us and this project as a whole. 

While the founder of FTB, Slowpoke (@slowpoke101), will be a formal member of Nerd Kingdom, FTB will of COURSE remain independent and Nerd Kingdom will give no directive to how they do things. As a matter of fact, we will find ways to support and expand on their work, even for the Minecraft community. And the first major steps in doing this, is open dialog and discussion to get to the bottom of what people actually need to get things done on their own projects. We will be actively looking for ways to help support modders and their projects. We will share more details on the “how” in a later update. 

On the game and tech side of things, we are in the bug squashing process, getting ready for another big update that will hit early next month. We will post some more videos on things to come on our youtube channel. And as always, if you are interested in keeping up with development, we post progress reports to our trello here.

And you can see FTB official announce here.

If you guys have any questions about stuff n things, hit me up @inoritewtf, or mod stuffs @Slowpoke101 or someone to yell at for things being late @BrennanPriest42 or general game updates @nerdkingdom @TheUntitledGame 

Dev Blog #21: What is Magic?

An early introduction about TUG’s early magic interactions. How is apothecary and alchemy introduced in the world of TUG?

Thus far in TUG we have seen a lot of beginnings to systems including the crafting, cooking and hunting systems.  Each of these have used a very basic principle in its design, the idea of crudeness and early experimentation.  Now we are entering into another new system, our magic system and it also follows that same design principle of early crude uses with the potential of great refinement as the game progresses.


What is magic?  In our real world, magic is a universal umbrella covering anything that is misunderstood or not quite explained.  I’m sure several of you have heard the Arthur C Clarke’s third law stating: “Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic.”  Let’s break down this law a little bit.  When Clarke made that statement, I don’t think he was saying that technology and magic are similar or that all magic is just advanced technology but more of what he meant is that to someone who has never seen a technologically advanced device, its operation would seem like something magical.  When comparing this to how we want magic to operate in the world of TUG, magic is a “shortcut” to powers or abilities that become readily available through more advanced tools and devices as the Seedling’s progress in their technology levels.


Keeping this in mind, our first forays into the realm of magic are coming in two forms that match up to the Seedling’s crude level of current tools and we have chosen apothecary and alchemy to represent these first forms of magical interactions.  Much like how early human civilizations progressed, the process of gathering roots and herbs veered into creating poultices and crushed concoctions.  Likewise, hunting and cooking meat left bones and other products that could be ground into powders.  


Potions created through apothecary provide us with our shortcuts to aid in other systems.  From a potion that helps your plants grow faster to a potion that extends the amount of hunger or fuel that the Seedling runs on!  That last one is a perfect segway into discussing our second element of magic, alchemy.


Alchemy is truly one of humankind’s mystical arts.  Alchemists believed in finding that one transmutation that could turn lead into gold but in TUG our alchemy system is a little more grounded on helping Seedlings find easier routes to goals.  Early alchemy systems in TUG are all about finding a return on investment as well as exchanging one product for another product that will be more useful to the player.  Alchemical experiments can be conducted both in the wild as well as at a crafted station made by the player.  Wild alchemy is a little bit more costly but doesn’t require the Seedling to return to their home base when they really need to make some conversion of resources.  The alchemy table the player can craft doesn’t take as much of a toll and also offers more types of conversion experiments.


But what is this cost?  While potion making in apothecary is more based on the player’s skill at gathering and brewing up mixes, alchemy is about a new type of interaction with the Seedling and his environment.  Performing magic, even at its most basic comes at a cost.  The Seedling will sacrifice a little bit of his fuel for each alchemical exchange.  This is the price of forcing energy in the world in new and unusual ways.  As magic progresses as well as the Seedling’s technology and understanding, new ways to offset this cost will become available as well as stronger uses for magic.  Exciting new mystical paths will begin to open for the Seedling but every tap into the energy flowing through the world has a cost!   

Dev Blog #20: Animation Part 2

TUG Animation Information for the Masses

More on planning, with a hint of Predators

Hey all, Skittles here again, and today we are continuing our exploration into Animation in TUG!

Last time we chatted about the my focus on planning, gathering information on restrictions/requirements (like needing things to move at a certain speed or hit on certain frames to keep certain beats), and just overall working with the team so as to get the most of of each animation.  This week, before we get down to the nitty-gritty of taking an animation from planning to something closer to what you see in-game, we are going to chat a bit more on the planning side of things.

After having gotten done determining movement speeds and sound information, the last bit of planning before starting an animation is “how many states will this character/critter have”. Now, to better illustrate this, allow me to use you, dear reader, as part of this example.  You have many states you go through during the day; one of which is sitting, another sleeping, and yet another is walking.  Now for you, you might consider that you right now are just sitting there reading this, while for me, your state is the “sitting” state, and you are performing the “reading” action at this very moment.  Now that I have hopefully illustrated what I mean by “state” , let me proceed with my animation explanation.  After determining the state, I then must conclude what sort of animation it needs to be.  There are two types of animation I tend to use to get the variety of animations we have in game, the animations are either an action, or a loop set.  These two can either be used to transition from one state to another (A), or to simply complete an action and return back to it’s previous state (B).



On top of these two, there is also the determining factor of should this animation be combined with one or more of state’s default animation? If it can, this is then called a mask (both images above use a mask for only applying the animation from the hips up, thus allowing from the hips down to either walk, run, idle, or crouch).  Last, but definitely not least, is the action frame.  The action frame is the frame in which the important piece of the animation takes place: the strike of the weapon, the contact of the pick, etc.  The action frame is something determined and balanced by the game designers, and then it is up to me to take their timing adjustments and make sure I hit the correct timing.

So yeah, with that all in mind, I open my 3D program and load up the rig Shotgun Ninja has so awesomely put together for me, and then go to town.  It is here at the first animation for the character/critter that I choose either to animate the walk, the idle, or the run animation.  Now the idle animation will most likely have the most animations branching from them, but the walk and run cycles give me the chance to explore the personality of the character/critter.  I normally choose to start with the walk, that way I can get into the character’s personality faster and use it to influence the rest the animations.  The predator was a fun one to work on because it needed to be fierce, stealthy, and powerful.  Starting with the stalking animation, I immediately brought his head down so as to give a more ominous feel stealthy feel, while having his tail whip from side to side to show his excitement in the hunt.  I tried to keep his head as centered as the movement of his body would allow, to give the impression of focus and determination.

Alrighty good peoples of the internet, it’s been fun sharing this time with you, but now I must get back to actually putting these tips and tricks into practice and giving yall new animations to play with.  *high five*

… hmm… would a “high five” be loop set or an action… action I think… unless… unless we wanted to have the hand stay up in the air WAITING for another person to participate… Then a loop set it is… the high fiver would wanna be able to move around or stand still, so it has to work with idling, walking, and running… now which hand shall I apply this to… I think the Gem hand, that way the high fiver can still be productive…

Yeah… *waves* bye now!


Dev Blog #19: Lua Scripting!

Here at Nerd Kingdom we spend a lot of time thinking about how we can empower the community to help create the game they want to play. One important way that we can help do this is by supporting modders with the tools and information they need to author interesting content. Modding is always at the forefront of our decision making when it comes to technology, and we’ve gone to great lengths to build the game with the same modding tools that we will be providing the community.

Though TUG is still in alpha, today we are providing the first revision of our scripting api documentation. You can find them at

We would also like to spotlight some fantastic mods that have recently been created:

Gecko Mod:
Swaps all Goats with Geckos! Written by power modder Sigil.

Scripted Bow:
Adds a bow that the player can shoot. Although the Seed might need to learn a thing or two about bow usage. Written by forum user nocare.

Magic Goat Wand:
We have also written a fresh guide, intended to introduce modders to scripted content within TUG via the creation of a simple Magic Wand.