The initial pre-release is still essentially the VR Jam game I created, although cleaned up and improved significantly. The gameplay is also still simple with only a few basic exploration and treasure hunting mechanics. My plan right now is to continue improving and enhancing the foundation of the game. I also intend to rework the terrain with new shaders, revise the art pack used for the island, and put in a procedural sky system with a day/night cycle. My hope is to rebuild the foundation so it is more flexible and can handle all of the cool experiences I want to build.
However, while I am working on that I will also be doing some additional work on the existing game. The player avatar is still using the ninja model from the character controller package so I am planning to use a character generation system to come up with some generic adventurer character models. These will plug into the mecanim character control system and continue to utilize the hundreds of character animations that come with it. Also related to the avatar is the combat. Going forward I am planning on weapons including a speargun swimming and a pistol walking. Aiming will be based on head look and will be intuitive as possible so it does not require a lot of skill. The next update will likely have this stuff in it.
As part of the rework of the terrain, I also have plans for an underground that will connect to the surface of the island both above the water through ruins and below through underwater caverns. Within the context of the story the mysterious island is studded with even more mysterious ruins, which are actually the ruins of an ancient city that suffered a great cataclysm. There is something dark and ominous below the island within the remnants of that ancient city half submerged by the ocean. Having a complete underground will add another whole dimension to the game. It will also require some good mapping skills and plenty of lantern fuel, and there will be some nefarious things infesting that treasure laden labyrinth.
Further down the road I also plan to add a climbing system. With the the rework of the terrain I am going to setup a system for large rock formations on the island. These of course will eventually have a climbing component. This goes back to the original VR concept of experiencing height and scale without constant extreme movement of flying or falling. The character control system I have been working with (and modifying heavily) has a fantastic climbing ability. My intention is that you will scan around via head look to highlight a hand hold and then press a button and the character will shift to that new hand hold. This process will repeat to climb up a cliff face. There will also be lateral movement across handholds that are long and horizontal such as the lip of a rock outcropping. Of course successful climbing will give you access to additional treasure stashes, entrances to the underground, or other special places. You will also be able to enjoy the view from some high places. Climbing won’t be limited to outdoors, since there will be caverns and vaults underground that will require it as well.
Well, hopefully this is enough to keep you interested. I am planning on doing pre-alpha releases until the game starts to feel like a real game. All of the content created through the pre-alpha period will be for testing and experimentation though. I think once I get to alpha territory I will focus on reworking much of the content to be of a higher quality level that also will fit the story and the larger game.