Rivers and bridges

When creating the type of land types and river and steams would seem better and most likely to be where people would settle. For food, water, waste and defence?

A bridge is needed for a river. However, it is said to be technically very difficult to implement. It takes a lot of time. Let’s wait and not mention any more rivers and bridges.

What rubbish ( Let’s wait and not mention any more rivers and bridges.?) a ford could be in the early stages then a ferry and finally a bridge for instance. The thoughts for a river is more re land usage and town design and water as most cities ARE built on rivers.

These are only my thoughts, the developers have the right and power to do what they think best for the game play. So far have done a great job.

Which part of difficult to implement have you not understood?

Maybe instead of telling the OP “not to mention any more rivers and bridges” or asking “what part of difficult to implement have you not understood?”…maybe you could just link them to the correct information or…GASP!..post a simple quote from the devs…

*"As for docks/bridges, water gameplay is actually a lot more complicated than you’d think in our setup. It’s something we’ve experimented with during development but ultimately decided to shelf for the time-being.

It’s a mechanic we will likely revisit, but it may have to be some kind of water-themed DLC as the tech and features necessary would be a major undertaking that’s not likely to fit the timeframe for the base game."*

thanks for the explanation that info is quite helpful.

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A bridge is literally just a road you can build on water. What’s so difficult to implement there?
There are already shallow fords which allow traversal. A bridge could be just that with an additional model.

When you build a dirt path, it constructs a wooden bridge when over water. A stone bridge when drawing a paved road. Limit the possible length of a bridge somewhat to a sensible degree.
Other games can do it, so why not this one?

Or will it mess up the enemy AI when you build a bridge, then a wall right behind it so the enemy has nowhere to go to attack the walls but the narrow bridge? Which is the whole point of bridge fortifications.

Other than that, i cannot possibly see any reason why bridges should be any difficult to implement.

Here is a brief rundown of why, reposted from Reddit

I see a lot of…heated comments in here. Rather than responding individually, I’ll go over it here.

I’m sure for some players, no bridges is a glaring oversight. For others, it’s lack of religion…others still are appalled we did not have a forestry system so you can set up logging and forget it. And where’s the tech tree? What about more animals? Raiders should have camps you can attack! Why aren’t there more soldier types? When is the framerate going to be improved further? Where’s the option to redistribute items between storages? And this trade system is useless without the ability to request goods! And how long are you going to leave X bugged?!

Depending who you ask, any number of these are critical priority and lacking them is a glaring oversight on our part. Everyone has their own list of must-have features.

To put things in perspective, to get you the game you are playing now took over 6 years of development. Farthest Frontier’s core team consists of 7 developers. The designers/producers/artists are not going to be adding new features for you, so that leaves the 4 programmers. We’re not a big team. All of Crate Entertainment was 15 people until very recently, we will soon be 18 strong. Could make the argument that we should be all hands on deck for finishing Farthest Frontier, but part of keeping a studio running is to stagger our releases so something is always on the way (and in the worst case scenario if a product were to flop, we are not scrambling to get something else out, which can quickly become a vicious cycle or even lead to the closure of a studio). Those that are not working on Frontier are busy developing a new in-house engine for our upcoming games, and another team is working on an unannounced project.

Development, as I hope has been made clearer, takes time. Especially when it comes to new features. Adding features early on is a quicker process, there is not much game yet that could break. But as the project grows in size and complexity, each new addition means you now have to make sure it plays nicely with what’s already there. Otherwise you get bugs (inevitably some bugs will occur even with the best efforts). This is partly why at the start of Farthest Frontier’s early access we were able to rapid fire updates, but those updates were largely to address bugs reported by you. Now that the worst issues have been resolved, programmers are spending far more time on features and optimization, and less on fixing glaring bugs. But this also means updates are less frequent.

Cue the abandonware doomsayers! We’re still patching Grim Dawn 10 years after it started out in early access. We’re not in the habit of abandoning our work. We originally stated that early access would last 8-12 months. At this point we are planning on blowing up that estimate; not because we are behind schedule or stuff is taking longer to implement than we anticipated, but because we want to give you MOAR. Based on the positive reception in early access (over 250k people jumped into the frontier in just the first week) and your feedback so far, we know we have a strong foundation that players are interested in, but we also have a better idea of what you want out of the game and have expanded our scope accordingly.

Incidentally, I am the one managing the team’s priorities and also the person that’s offered himself as tribute to keep tabs on everything going on in our forums and reddits; so in essence I am a direct link between your biggest requests/complaints and getting the right people working on solving that. Ultimately, you are getting a bigger game shaped by your feedback and requests, but the price is your patience.

As for bridges, at a certain stage of development, we made the decision that bridges and water gameplay are simply beyond scope for the initial release. Given that we are already expanding the scope of the game, this wasn’t something we took lightly. Bridges were a system we experimented with over the years and the number of issues mounted rapidly.

  • How will the path mesh update with a bridge? Normally water constitutes an unpathable area, so need the pathing system to account for this dynamic change. This can change how raiders and animals are spawned/path to town as well.
  • How are bridges placed? Are they straight bridges of limited length? Or do they adjust to some max length during placement? What about spline bridges for angles/curves? What happens if one shoreline is taller than the other? What constitutes a valid placement?
  • How will villagers build bridges? Where do they approach it since one side of it is theoretically unreachable? But what if both sides can be reached? Need a check to avoid them pathing crazy distances to build it from the “wrong” side.
  • Can animals path across bridges?
  • Can bridges be destroyed? At the very least, players would need the option to destroy a bridge cause you might change your mind and want to put it elsewhere. Can raiders destroy bridges? What happens if villagers/animals/raiders are crossing a bridge when it is destroyed?
  • If a bridge is destroyed, a part of town could become unreachable. What happens to the cut-off villagers? Do they continue to function in the area they are in? If yes, in that scenario, you’d functionally have two towns. Would need to the AI to account for what it can and cannot reach in that case.
  • If we add fishing/trading boats or other water gameplay down the line, how will those interact with bridges? Some games just omit that entirely and have boats clipping through bridges. I’m not sure that’s something we’d consider good enough for our implementation. If we account for it, then we need water pathing to update if a bridge suddenly splits a lake/river in two. This could mean a boat’s destination or home are suddenly inaccessible. How do we account for that? What happens if a boat gets trapped between two bridges by a player trying to break the game, or simply by accident?
  • Stuff I’m forgetting off the top of my head.

I’m sure someone could twist this list to be just a bunch of excuses but this is me, a non-programmer, spelling out the laundry list of concerns that need to be overcome without even looking at all the code that would need to be written and rewritten to make it happen. It’s a big task. Maybe one that would have been simpler had we gone with a different pathing solution or engine, but this is what we are working with. If and when we do water gameplay, we want to do it justice. Bridges would be on theme.

tl;dr; A game that tries to do everything will either do it poorly, turn out to be bullshit, or take decades to make (or modders will step in and fix it!). I would argue that it is better to do some things well, than everything badly. And in light of everything we and the player base want Frontier to become, we had to postpone bridges until later.

I’m sure that is not the answer those that want bridges/water gameplay want to hear, but I hope this stupid dev’s response helped shed light on the situation! :slight_smile:


Thanks for the fabulous explanation Zantai. That’s a very comprehensive response and judging by the crickets in here I think you made your point.

Meanwhile crossing my fingers that one day… one glorious day… water gameplay will be realized.