Donut Mod: Development Update #1

Published by Loren

The first development update blog post covering what we've been up to for Donut Mod.

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Introduction

Hello everybody, this is Loren from Donut Team and welcome to the first Donut Mod development update blog post.

Today, we're going to discuss some of what we've been up to since we posted the final Tuesday Topics.

Let's get into it!

Branding

Donut Mod is currently on its 4th major iteration, the version we mostly tend to refer to as "Donut Mod 4". We've arrived at this point because the project has been largely rewritten several times over the years as we've learned and advanced our modding tools and skills.

However, the side effect of referring to the mod in this way is some confusion regarding what the "4" means. We've seen on several occasions that people tend to mistake this as meaning this is the fourth entry in a series of mods when, in fact, it is just the latest version of a single long running project.

To (hopefully) rectify this confusion going forward, we are going to try being more explicit about this. "Donut Mod" is the project and the number(s) are the version. I've already started to do this back in Tuesday Topics #73 where I tentatively referred to the next version as "Donut Mod version 4.3" instead of "Donut Mod 4.3".

It's a minor change but I think maybe it'll make things more clear for folks who happen upon the mod for the first time in the future.

The Donut Mod Logo

Donut Mod's logo has gone through several iterations since the Project Donut days but one thing has always remained constant with it: It's always been something cobbled together by me.

Now, I'm not really a graphic designer or a texture artist of any kind so I figured we could probably do better. Given that fact, I finally decided to ask Tyler Oram to try his hand at designing a new icon and logo for the mod.

He had a very quick turnaround time with this and while we're still ironing out some of the details, we're quite happy with what he has come up with. We look forward to revealing it sometime soon.

For now, here's a little preview of the icon:

Next Donut Mod version icon

Expanded Lua P3D Modification System

I touched on this a bit in at least a couple Tuesday Topics, I believe, but the next version of Donut Mod utilises an expanded version of the dynamic Lua P3D Modification system I built on top of LuaP3DLib for Project Donut: Anniversary Edition.

Much like PD:AE, it is now used in Donut Mod as well for various things:

  • Injecting modifications into the base game maps in a much cleaner, more easily reversible manner.
    • This approach also shaves a huge amount off of the mod's file size by avoiding shipping huge portions of the files that would be unmodified in this mod.
  • Fixing various issues with the base game's cars while only including the chunks that needed to be modified.
  • Fixing various issues with the base game's gags in the same manner.
  • It's also used on certain brand new cars to facilitate things like multi-texture randomised colors that would not be feasible using the base game's methods of randomisation.

This system is powerful and has helped streamline development of various things and also make the mod significantly smaller, a win win for us and for the players.

Mission Randomization Concept

Another system I am working on is a customisable mission randomisation system. The goal of this project is to bring back some of the random objectives, largely seen within Donut Mod 2, without forcing them on everyone.

This feature will offer 3 different settings to cater to your preferred playstyle:

No Randomisation

Each mission has a fixed structure. This is probably the way to go for speedrunning or for those who want things to remain predictable.

Randomise on Restart

Certain missions have certain objectives randomised every time you restart them. This has the upside of keeping things very fresh but the downside of not allowing you to learn as much from your mistakes.

Randomise on Select

This is similar except the mission is only randomised once each time you select it. This is less random but allows you to learn from your mistakes within that session and still get a fresh experience the next time you try the mission.

Eastern Junk

One last thing I'd like to show off today is the Eastern Junk car that mazexz has created.

You may recall this vehicle from the iconic Mr. Plow episode of The Simpsons and it will now be making its debut in Donut Mod.

the Eastern Junk

Put it in H!

I think mazexz did a great job with this and I am excited to see how they do with their next car project for the mod. We haven't fully nailed down where and how you will obtain this one yet but it will appear somewhere in the next version!

There are also some more special variants of this car you'll have to discover for yourself when the update rolls around. Stay tuned!

Conclusion

That's all for this development update. Thanks for tuning in and we'll see you again sometime soon with more Donut Mod news.

- Loren from Donut Team