Some time ago, we started work on our new project, “Emergency Ambulance Simulator
2014″ (or “Rettungswagen Simulator 2014” in German). It’s the sequel to “Emergency Ambulance Simulator 2014” (or “Rettungswagen Simulator 2012” in German), which we developed in 2010 – 2011. Astragon Software GmbH published the game in August 2011. EAS 2012 had a few spots we thought we could improve on – it required a lot of hardware resources and the treatment aspect of the sim was more causal than we’d have liked. We decided to make an even better game this year and our partner, astragon, is once again on board. We’re coding up a really cool emergency rescue simulation game.
Astragon also created a facebook fanpage for EAS some days ago.
We don’t have a AAA budget, so we decided to focus on a core set of improvements to our work on EAS 2012. Here are some of the changes:
- Improved engine: The game engine we used in EAS 2012 was a good engine with some useful tools, but we had no access to the source code – that meant we couldn’t fix bugs on own if (and when!) the need arose. There were also some licensing fees that we had to pay for every game that used the engine. With that in mind, we decided to use OGRE3D, an open source engine, as our render engine, and then use it to build a game framework and tools like we did for “Handball Simulator 2010” a few years ago. OGRE is also a good fit with the rest of the technology that we’re using this time around. For instance, if we’d reused the commercial engine, we’d have had to reintegrate PhysX-3 since there’s no support for it.
- New toolchain: We retired our procedural street generator and instead licensed CityEngine. CityEngine procedurally generates buildings and streets. It was fun tweaking our own homebrew generator, but the switch means that we can invest more time in making other aspects of the sim shine. For instance, there was a lot of work to be done building a special editor to edit the streets, fixing bugs in the mesh generator, improving the generator so it could build other streets and bridges and so on.
- New and better models for characters and vehicles: Trust us, you’ll notice the difference when you fire up EAS 2014. 🙂
- Improved treatment sequences: One of the biggest challenges in making EAS 2014 better than its predecessor is improving the treatment part of the game. We plan to make the treatment more realistic and more complex. Players will get a more in-depth experience of being a paramedic tasked with treating the ill and wounded.
That’s just the beginning – there are some other improvements that we and our publisher, astragon Software GmbH, will reveal in the coming months.
If you have any questions or suggestions, feel free to post here on the blog or on the EAS facebook page.