Commish's Dev Blog #6 - Enhancing Quality

by Cameron Irvine

So Season 21 came and went just like that. I last wrote a blog in September (#5) and that was mostly updates about our action on the field during the season, but it's been since the summer since we last updated our viewers on visual improvements we are making to the game in time for Season 22 - and they will make a substantial impact.

Our goal in Season 22 isn't to radically overhaul visuals, but only to make improvements to the existing product. This process started by bringing in Minnesota Owner Axel Raven on to staff as a contributor after his work off the field with the Legend last season and this off-season during the team's brand refresh. Raven has been helping the league this off-season improve textures off the field, on the sidelines and in the stands.

This includes going through each team and finding textures that previously weren't edited or were of low resolution and maximizing the visual capabilities of that gear, whether that's getting the details of a hat, the ruffles in a jacket or the authenticity of a fan jersey.

By the end of the project, the league will have improved over 200 textures across the league to improve the immersion and experience for our viewers, players and teams. While we wish every team took it upon themselves or had the capabilities to make all this happen, nothing will stop the SFL from having a high quality product, from A-Z. These textures will be rolled out in two phases. Phase 1 will release later this week prior to the season and Phase 2 will release later on during the season.

What you'll also see released in Phase 1 is new sky textures but updates to the singular day, afternoon and night skies within the mod aren't the end of what we're doing to the atmosphere of outdoor games in SFL Season 22. During SFL broadcasts this season, the league has compiled 16 different types of skies to use during games and will even be able to dynamically adjust the sky during games that kickoff before, during and after sunsets.

Clear skies, cloudy skies, stormy skies - every game will feel that much more different and unique and this is just the beginning - I've provided some teaser screenshots below. While the league works to once again add rain and snow games to its abilities, this will give us something much more valuable to broadcasts since sky visuals don't impact visibility of the action on the field in a negative way.

On top of all this, our league website has received some visual upgrades. More engagement through social media is a goal in Season 22 as well, although our focus will always be on our current customers and diehard fans in our Discord community and our 400 broadcasts produced a year. On those broadcasts, you'll see a reinvestment in storytelling of team performance in-game and during the season plus milestone achievements for players.

The season is right around the corner and we've put a lot in to Season 22 - on and off the field. Enjoy the season and until next time, treat others as you would want to be treated and stay safe, happy and healthy.