Something that often gets overlooked by gaming fans until it’s going wrong right in front of them is that the game development teams who work on the titles they play have to go insanely deep into the details of programming to ensure that everything goes smoothly within the game. After all, graphics, gameplay, UI, and more wouldn’t work without the programming to help everything function. So, when you have a game like Foamstars that has things like foam going everywhere, and you get to “interact” with the foam or build it up to do various things, that will take quite a while to make it work, wouldn’t you think?
On the PlayStation Blog, the director of Foamstars, Chikara Saito, talked about how they could get everything to work with the foam so that the game could be what the dev team desired. He fully admitted that it was a challenge, not the least because of the processing power required to make it work when every player can shoot foam in various ways:
“This is a huge part of what makes the game so unique, but bear in mind that up to 8 players playing together online can fire off foam at the same time – some of them in separate places, quite far away from one another – so we had to be able to sync up each instance of foam in real time. This alone accounted for a considerable amount of load on the CPU, but on top of that, we also realised another game mechanic that is crucial to Foamstars’ gameplay: foam remaining in place and piling up to change the stage’s topography. These things together put an enormous burden on the CPU.”
So, how did they get around this? Ironically, they used Unreal Engine 4 to change the landscape through the foam gameplay! That might sound simplistic, but it gave the team more processing power during gameplay, greatly upping what they could allow players to do.
“The test map began as a single, flat plane stretching out ahead of you. As I watched it transform dynamically due to the actions of the players, I realised that we created an experience that could only come from a medium of entertainment where worlds are interactive.”
We’ll have to wait and see if it’s as fun as the game dev team hopes it is. The title will be released on March 4th, and if you’re a PlayStation Plus member, you can get the title for free!