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Will To Survive
January 30, 2014 - Liquidoodle
Good day everyone!
It's been a long time coming but we finally have a new development diary video for you to watch, everything has started to come together this past two weeks so we finally have something worthy of being shown. I'll get into detail about what we have been up to after the video for those who want to read the wall of text that follows.
So this has been a royal pain in Dan's side over the past few months, after several re-writes on his side of things and a few changes on my side with tile map code and the like he has finally got the system working and in-game. Hurrah! It works really well so far minus a few small issues that Dan is sure to fix later down the line and it really helps when navigating around by mouse/touch input as you can see in the video. For those who don't want to play using mouse/touch there will also be a keyboard/game pad input system available too. This system will also be used for AI patrol logic and the combat screen so it's been really important to get this working and working right.
The tile map system as I said last update has had quite a considerate re-write because quite simply it was a little broken and needed to be fixed to work with the new artwork. I've ironed out the last few issues that were left with it so that it is now incredibly precise when drawing and converting from screen space to map space.
I've also tackled some of the things I've been wanting to do for a while with the system so the draw order is now fixed and allows Spine artwork to be drawn behind height tiles, the combat grid and other elements can be drawn above the base tiles but below everything else, the entire map can be tinted a specific colour which is mainly used for the combat screen and the whole map is cropped to the screen so there is no drawing done off screen to improve drawing on mobile devices.
Something that needed to be looked into before going head long into tackling the combat was planning the way the combat grid would work and designing it's aesthetic. This is something else that I've got done and put into the game all be it in a basic manner.
There's also been a lot of core code updates happening that don't entirely come across in the video. We've had a bit of a shift around and clean up of the main classes to improve things for what we were doing and for the future as the way I had tackled them was a bit strange.
The intro screens can now be skipped and I've massively improved and changed the screen and screen management system which will help later down the line. Spine artwork and the process of creating the art has also improved to allow me to make it quicker as well as supporting future clothing/skin changes. The tile map art generation and map creation has inevitably been worked on now too so we have a solid technique for creating this new style art and getting it into the game.
Now the path finding is tackled to a decent state Dan is going to be looking at enemy A.I. Logic for patrolling and guarding, line of sight for player detection as well as reacting to the player once he is seen. Hopefully this should be shown in the next development diary and once done Dan will be making way with the combat mechanic... exciting!
For myself, I'm split between making sure Dan has all the art required for the combat screens as well as having a re-write of the user interface system.
Phew, I think that just about covers everything...
See you next time!
January 6, 2014 - Liquidoodle
It's been well over a month since the last update so we wanted to make a brief update to let you know how things are progressing.
Time working on the game has been reduced a little due to freelance commitments, Christmas and various other things but we've been working solid whenever we can.
During the December period I've mainly been working on re-writing big chunks of the tile map code, the main reason was to implement the new style artwork shown last update. We also discovered that due to my rather peculiar isometric code it was a pain for Dan to tackle the path finding and combat so I also wanted to tackle that in the re-write, luckily I found a really handy guide which has helped massively. That's all done now bar a few polishing touches so I'm moving back onto working up a small area of the map to get in game.
Dan has been hard at work writing the path finding and improved collision code which will be getting finalised this week all being well, he's also started work on the new combat mechanic so fingers crossed in the coming month we can get some video footage of that up along with the new environment in game and the other tweaks we have been making.
Until next time.
November 15, 2013 - Liquidoodle
It's been a while since the last update, everything is progressing nicely but a lot of what has been done this past month hasn't been visual enough to show to you, until now.
New Environment Concept
Over the last couple of weeks I've been working on a proof of concept for the way the environment is now going to look and work. You can see this below. It's not an 100% perfect representation as there will be cars, objects, lamp posts and more road markings in the final game but it should give you a good idea of the direction we are heading.
The previous set of environment art was created using tiled blocks, this technique worked well but came with a few problems and it was these problems that caused me to re-think the strategy behind how it would work and ultimately look. The new technique we'll be using for mapping the environment will use tiled squares for the floor elements as before but for the building elements rather than using tiled blocks we'll now be using longer cut up strips, I've made an example of this below.
The new method of mapping means that the environment art can now look more detailed and can allow me to do more interesting things with buildings such as destroying them. Previously doing this with small tiled elements would have been a chore. This new method will also speed up the creation of the artwork as well as shortening the amount of time it takes to create the final in game map files. Another benefit is that there will now be less overdraw as buildings aren't getting drawn as lots of individual tiles layered over each other; This will greatly benefit the Android and iOS versions of the game which were previously running a tad slow. The one down side is that I've decided to cap the height of the buildings, this doesn't mean that we can't increase the height later down the line however and to be honest it looks pretty good regardless.
Hopefully you all agree that this looks much better than before.
Video Diary #2
All being well in the next couple of weeks I'll be doing another video diary regarding some of the new features, watch this space.
That's all for this update.
October 29, 2013 - Liquidoodle
I received some amazing news today and figured I would share it with you all, Will To Survive has been successfully green lit!
A massive thanks to everyone who has voted, favourited, followed and commented. We could not have done this without your help!
October 18, 2013 - Liquidoodle
Well hello there everybody!
Things have been busy and going well with the game since the last update. I've cleaned up the last few bits of code ready for Dan as well as doing spots of project organisation and planning but for the most part I've been getting to grips with a new tool called Spine.
Spine is a wonderful 2D skeletal animation tool and I've been wanting to play with it for a while as it will really help do some more advanced things with both the player and alien artwork especially in terms of the new combat mechanic which we will be starting soon. I've uploaded a short development diary for you to check out.
The artwork isn't by any means final but it's already looking much smoother and higher quality than before. It also uses far less texture memory and is far easier for me to create, meaning I can spend more time polishing and adding more content.
Meanwhile Dan has been getting to grips with the code and has currently been putting in some rather swish path finding then he's going to be vastly improving the collision detection so that Will no longer gets caught up on corners and walls so easily. Hopefully we can upload a video of that next week.
Where To Next
The next stage of development will be to look at getting the new combat mechanic working, I've already got a battle plan written and will be starting on the artwork this weekend. Once we are ploughing through that I dare say there will be much more videos and updates for you to see... it's quite exciting!
We are currently doing really well on Steam, we're number 26 but were recently at position 24. If Valve continue to Greenlight projects at the rate that they are presently going that means we stand a very strong chance of getting green lit in the next batch. That's only going to happen if we stay pretty high up in the ranks however so any help you can give by sharing this Greenlight page with friends, family and colleagues would be greatly appreciated... LETS DO THIS! :D
That's all for now, thanks for reading and supporting!