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Will To Survive
31 Outubro - Liquidoodle

Hey folks, it's that time of the month again for a quick update on progress. It's been a pretty good month for development this month because I had to use up some holiday from work and that meant I could spend a solid block of time working on the game.


The first thing I did this month was to revisit the vision code I had made and check the arc tests which were working perfectly, I then decided to push the line of sight code to one side for now so that I could get onto the stealth side of things as that felt more important to get working.


This part of the project has been going well, I spent a bit of time refactoring all the combat code first so that it was more malleable and suitable for including stealth aspects, this ended up with me removing the idea of a “combat” mode and changing it into a generic turn based mode which would be used for all turn based scenarios.

I then gave the player the ability to switch to this new turn based mode at the press of a button as well as having it switch on when enemies were alerted of your presence via their vision logic. This in turn lead to me starting on the artificial intelligence for the enemies so that their behaviour would help direct the flow of turn based mode towards stealth being an option.

The enemy A.I. now has various states used when playing their turn, they can be idle meaning they just stand there waiting to see and on seeing you change to another state, in pursuit meaning that they can currently see you and are actively heading towards your current direction and finally the tracking state. Tracking is a little more complex than the others as what happens during this state is that the enemy remembers where they last saw the player and moves towards that position while simultaneously trying to find the player again, on reaching the destination and loosing the player they will return to their idle state but when seeing the player they will then change to pursuit.

The A.I. is very basic for now but it's already giving the impression of being able to avoid enemies gaze and being able to lose them once they are alerted to your presence. It also means you can sneak through a room or access objects without them seeing you which totally changes the dynamic of the game.

Up Next

Ok, so up next I'm basically going to be continuing with the turn based mode, enemy A.I. and vision. There’s lots of small touches and additions that need going into the enemy logic before I move onto giving them line of sight, once that's done I need to start looking into giving the player cover and the ability to hide and move behind that cover in order to hide from enemies and evade them.

That's all for this month.


30 Setembro - Liquidoodle

Hello all! I'm back with another update, sorry this one took a while longer than the regular monthly time slot as planned, unfortunately my landlord decided to sell the flat shortly after the last update meaning I had to look for a new place to live, pack up and move along with everything else that goes with moving a flat. As you can imagine that has been quite a hectic and stressful process leaving very little of my spare time left to do anything else meanwhile, in fact I'm still sorting stuff even now.

The new place has some handy advantages over where I was living previously though, I'm getting the train in rather than walking so I generally get a bit of extra spare time back which I can use for development and also it has a much bigger area to locate my desk so I don’t have to move my computer around any more. I'm starting to settle into the new place now so all being well I should be able to get back on track with development this next month thankfully.


The last thing I was working on for the game was vision and line of sight so that I can start developing the stealth mechanics. This had all been going well up until the move, I first set up a test to see if the player is within a set square area around the enemy, followed by a test to see if the player is within a vision triangle or arc for the enemy based on which way they are facing. It’s been really handy developing portions of this in work during lunch breaks as some of my programmer colleagues have helped speed up the maths for this with some rather neat tips and tricks. The next step is to double check the arc test is working exactly how I want it to before moving onto doing some more advanced line of sight tests so obstacles and walls will occlude the enemies view.

That’s it for this update, all being well this next month I can get it working in a visual manner to create a video of it in action.


1 Julho - Liquidoodle

It's been far too long since my last update, just over a year in fact so apologies for not posting for a while as I know some of you are following the project with interest.

The Bug

So the first thing I wanted to tackle is my absence from posting any updates. Progress had been going quite smoothly last time I updated and I was close to posting another update along with a video when unfortunately I hit a particularly horrid bug in the project, one which was intermittent with no easy way of determining what was happening. I spent a lot of time trying to diagnose it but as I couldn't spend any full days working on it I really struggled to get close to fixing it. This bug really put a spanner in the works and eventually lead to me dropping off from working on the project for a while, I kept meaning to get back into it but the horrid bug just kept putting me off.

The Fix

Last week I got speaking to VidGgeek(rus) and he helped me realise just how long it had been since I did any work on the project so I got the latest code base during my dinner break in work and started looking into the bug which had prevented me from doing anything in a long while. Sure enough as before I struggled in diagnosing the issue but early Sunday morning I managed to catch a break. I managed to get the game running with the bug constantly on, this in turn helped me get to the bottom of what was happening and I finally fixed it which made me extremely happy and excited. It was actually something that was rather simple and now I know what was going wrong makes what was happening make sense but boy oh boy was that bug a nightmare! I'm super glad I managed to get it sorted.

What’s Next

Now I know what the issue is I'm first going to make a proper fix for the code rather than the quick one I made at the weekend, I'm also going to clean up and improve some of the code which I had started sorting out before the bug ruined my plans. Once that’s done I’m going to start looking into the stealth part of the combat system so when encountering enemies they don’t react straight away to your presence allowing you to sneak past them as well as giving the enemies line of sight and vision cones.

I'm going to try and stick to a monthly update post from now on to keep you updated as it was far too long between this and the last and I'm determined to make some actual progress to show you all too.

Cheers to everyone who's stayed interested in the project, it means a lot.


23 de Junho de 2014 - Liquidoodle

Hi all! I just wanted to do a quick check in and update you on progress seeing as it's been well over a month since the last time I did this. Everything has been progressing at a steady pace all be it a little slower than normal due to working on several freelance projects.

General Improvements

A portion of what I have been up to is a few improvements that were much needed in the game. Spine files are now loaded in a different way meaning that the game's loading times have been drastically reduced, the loading previously was taking far too long and was getting in the way of healthy development. I've also adapted the way in which Spine files are drawn amongst the rest of the world tiles which makes the system much more robust and easier to adapt in the future.

Revised Path Finding

I've had an overhaul of the path finding system since creating a path finding algorithm for the movement grids. This has now fixed a whole bunch of issues that existed with the previous system where by the characters sometimes didn't stop and would also cut corners. The only thing left to do now is have them walk as close to an obstructed position as possible rather than flat out refuse to as they currently do.


The main area I have been working on since the last update is the combat mechanics of the game and getting the basics down and working.

Enemies now have a turn themselves and can walk to a random area within a certain range, this will later be altered to a proper A.I. system but for now I simply just wanted to give an illusion of them doing something.

I've also implemented the shooting action for the player now along with a new version of the combat grid for aiming so that the player can shoot at nearby enemies and a health bar system for you to see both yours and the enemies health. Once hit the enemies health goes down until they eventually die then once all the enemies are dead the combat will end.

What's Next

There are a lot of different things to tackle next so today I'm having a planning day to see where I should be headed. I'll also try and get a video diary up soon of the progress.

That's all for now.


25 de Abril de 2014 - Liquidoodle

Hi Folks! I said I would keep you abreast with updates on the new title seeing as it directly effects Will so here I am with an update on what's happening. First up project tunguska has a new name... The Last Drop. You can follow it on IndieDB here. Since the last update freelance work has kept me nice and busy so progress on the new project hasn't been as much as I would have liked but it's certainly starting to shape up.

Here's the latest development diary for the project and following it is a text break down of what I've been up to.



I've now altered the enemies to be loaded from the map XML and only be visible and active when you are in the same room as them. At the moment there is only one enemy type but in the future enemies will be randomly picked based on how far through you are and what type of room it is. The enemies now detect based on distance all-though I have ramped this distance up really high so combat triggers as soon as you walk into a room with enemies contained.


The main portion of the game I've been tackling since the last update is the combat which has been pretty exciting to finally work on. When you walk into a room containing enemies this instantly triggers, I'm not sure if this will be a permanent fixture just yet but my thinking is that it would make quite a good stealth mode.

When the combat triggers it plays a small intro where it pans the camera to each enemy who reacts with an animation then finally back to the player where it fades the world to darkness and shows the combat grid and combat UI.

So far the only actions implemented are moving and over-watch. You can select the action you want from the UI then select the square you want to move to on the grid and hit go to perform it.

The nice thing about the movement gird is that it path finds each cell when obstacles are present so that it knows how many steps it takes to move around that object and any cells not accessible in the movement range will be disabled. This is similar to the grid you can turn on in the PC version of X-Com. In the video I uploaded this doesn't take into account corners but since recording the diary I've actually fixed that.

It's not a full combat system yet but the plan is to get through it piece by piece and adapt it based on how it feels to play.

What's Next

Next up is allowing the enemies to make a turn and move in a similar fashion. This will then be followed by implementing the shooting mechanics which should be pretty fun to work on

Until next time!


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