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Claustrophobia: The Downward Struggle
September 9, 2014 - The Indie Forge
September 2, 2014 - The Indie Forge
August 28, 2014 - The Indie Forge
Make a note in your diaries, Claustrophobia will be launching into Alpha here and on Steam Early Access on September 9th! After a long gap between updates, I've decided it's finally time to bite the bullet and release the new build. Below is all the details you need to know!
Why Early Access?
From the very beginning, Claustrophobia has relied on the constant feedback of its community in order to shape the game. Now, with the release of the Redesigned build, I need player feedback more than ever before. Early Access is the best way to allow players to experience the game as it is built, while giving me the feedback I need to create the best possible experience. It's a win-win situation!
What Features does the new build have?
- Unending Procedurally Generated content: Procedurally generated gear, enemies, and terrain makes for infinite progression and adventure.
- Classless Character Development: Build the character you wish to play, and develop them through in-depth stat and ability customization.
- Tons of Loot: Collect vast amounts of weapons, armour, and active items, whose powerful abilities, stats, and passive bonuses enhance your gameplay.
- Fast-paced, Tactical Turn-Based Combat: Use positioning, clever skill use, and observation to best your enemies.
- Face Hoards of Challenging Enemies: From simple critters to deadly Elite Units, face off against a variety of monsters, each with their own set of abilities. Enemy Modifiers such as Teleportation,
- Invisibility, Lifesteal, and more, ensure that there’s always a new type of enemy to slaughter.
- Traditional Roguelike Features: Permadeath, a little luck, and unforgiving gameplay means your hero’s life is firmly in your hands.
- Scoring & Leaderboards: To remember all those poor souls who didn’t make it.
- Simple, easy to use Interface: All the details and functionality you need, without the clutter.
What's Still to Come?
- Multiple Dungeons: Featuring all new dungeon designs, enemies, rooms, loot, and more.
- Story mode: Dungeons will chain together for longer, more varied gameplay, and progression towards a final, endgame goal.
- More Character Development Options: More Class Roles, more Abilities, more talents.
- Further Item & Enemy Development: A much greater range of Item Abilities and Enemy Modifiers.
- Puzzles: More special room types will offer greater variation to exploration.
- Gear Crafting: Collect materials and salvage old gear to craft powerful new items.
- Achievements & Unlockables: New content unlocked for courageous feats of strength!
I Already Bought the game on Desura, how do I get my Steam Key?
Come September 9th, simply go to www.desura.com/collection and select Claustrophobia and then Keys to access your Steam Key.
Screenshots, Gameplay Trailer, and more information will be coming next week! Stay tuned, and as ever, thanks for reading!
Until next time,
August 8, 2014 - The Indie Forge
Hello all, long time no see. As you may have noticed, it’s been three weeks since the last Dev Log. I fully intended to have one written for last Friday, but I completely ran out of time, and therefore decided to hold everything back for one big update this week. So, here goes!
A Discussion on Hunger & Health Regen
So firstly I’d like to discuss what is essentially quite a large change from V1, and a mechanic that I’ve been working on for a while in order to try to balance correctly. In V1, Health and Mana would regenerate once the player had been out of combat for 5 turns, and would regenerate a fixed amount on a per turn basis. This led to all sorts of problems and annoyances, mainly having to hammer the Skip Turn button every few turns to heal.
With that in mind, I’ve made a number of changes. Firstly, the addition of the option to Rest until fully healed. This will only be possible when there are no enemies with you in sight, and when you are completely rid of de-buffs. Whilst resting, enemies will continue to hunt you down, and if you are discovered, resting will be paused. Resting is not required to heal, you will still regenerate passively while moving, but not while in combat.
Secondly, Health and Mana regeneration amounts are now based on a percentage of you Wisdom. This gives a reason for all classes to have need of at least a little Wisdom.
Finally, a new system has been introduced in order to prevent constant healing by simply resting after every fight. This system is Hunger. Health will only regenerate (note: this does not effect Mana) while your player is adequately fed, and will regenerate at a greater rate the better fed you are. There are 4 states of Hunger:
- Well Fed: Health Regeneration is Increased to 200%.
- Sated: Health Regenerates at normal rate.
- Hungry: No penalty, but a warning de-buff appears.
- Starving: Health will no longer passively regenerate.
Your player starts out at the top of Sated. Each turn that they regenerate health, their hunger decreases by 1 point until their hunger reaches 0, and they begin to starve. Starving does not reduce health, and you cannot die from it directly. But without finding and eating food, you will no longer regenerate over time. This means that if you have no food, and are low on health, you must choose to either heal for as much as your current hunger will allow you and stay in your current room, or risk it and venture out to find food.
Food itself can be found lying around the dungeon, dropped by monsters, or bought from shops. Different foods have different effects on top of just reducing hunger, and there are also potions which effect your hunger state.
It’s not my intention for this mechanic to become an annoyance itself. I don’t want people to feel like they’re constantly being held back by a lack of food, or that they are spending time worrying about eating when they could be adventuring. So I will be monitoring the balance of this mechanic extremely closely in order to find the perfect trade off.
Locked & Special Rooms
Still with me? That’s dedication right there! Or maybe you scrolled down looking for images? Either way, here’s a couple!
The new dungeon generator allows me to create all sorts of special rooms which exist alongside the randomly generated ones. In this case, the locked door, which can be opened by a Key, reveals:
A Treasury! There are already a number of different locked room types, including Butchers and Spell Rooms, with more to come. As well as locked rooms, I’m in the middle of designing trap and puzzle rooms that will appear randomly throughout the level.
Keys also work on Locked Chests. There are not always enough keys to open everything, so choose wisely. Locked rooms will never contain anything vital to progressing, but are always highly beneficial.
Enemy AI Changes
Enemies have got a whole lot smarter! Instead of just standing about waiting to be found, enemies will now roam the dungeon, patrolling corridors and pacing rooms. Once they spot the player, they will begin to chase. Doors will no longer hault enemies completely; instead, they will give you a 1 turn head start before they open them and continue chasing. If they lose sight of the player, they will head to the last place they saw them, search the area, and, if they find nothing, return to patrolling. An exclamation mark will appear above the head of an enemy that is alerted, and a question mark when they lose the scent.
You can now track the misadventures of all your heroes. Scoring is based on the experience your character earned while they were alive. The leaderboard also shows where you character died, what level they were, and the amount of time they were alive for.
Other stats such as what you were killed by and how many turns you survived for are also recorded, but are not currently displayed.
So many changes and additions over the last couple of weeks, I just can’t write about them all! Here’s a quick summary!
- Added Starting Abilities for the Juggernaut
- Added 3 new enemies
- Added Shields
- Added 2 Misc skills
- Added 6 new Potions
- Added 5 new Scrolls
- Added portals
- Added object indicators to the minimap
- Added floor tile variation
- Added animated tiles
- Added wall-mounted torches to corridors and large rooms
- Switched from Monogame back to XNA due to compatibility issues
- Added enemy spawning based on dungeon type
- Added room spawning based on dungeon type
- Added weighted spawning for items
- Added the Magical Missile skill for Mages, and changed all staves to deal elemental damage
- Added auto-sort option to Inventory
- Added new item notifier to Inventory
- Added menu toolbar to HUD
- Fixed a gazillion bugs (most prominent of which was that the save system didn’t work past level 3, and lost one of my friends a really nice Bow, which he was not pleased about. Whoops)
That is all! Don’t forget to leave me your comments, and, as always, thanks for reading!
Until next time,
July 18, 2014 - The Indie Forge
Hey everyone! Welcome to Claustrophobia Development Log #14! Some of you may remember that I predicted the earliest I would be able to release the Claustrophobia V2 Alpha was today, July 18th. Quite obviously, that date was hugely optimistic, and I’m afraid I am not yet ready to release anything. I am still hoping for Alpha to be released within the next couple of months, but I will not release until I am happy with the amount of content. So instead, here’s a load of new info and screenshots!
If you follow me on Twitter, you may have seen that I spent a large chunk of the last couple of weeks working on Character Creation. A big part of Claustrophobia has always been the ability to customize your character, and their skillset, to your playstyle. Therefore I felt it only fitting to dedicate a large amount of time to getting this right.
On the left, we have options for customizing your character’s appearance, and on the right, class options. To get you started, a number of Preset Classes will be available. These presets will load recommended character builds, as well as determine your starting gear set. Alpha will launch with 3 Presets (Juggernaut, Archer, and Warlock), but more classes will be added throughout development.
You can either play the game with a Preset Class, or edit a Preset to create your own class.
Clicking “Edit Class” will bring up the Abilities window, which will allow you to reassign Class Roles, Talents, and Starting Skills. Each Class Role will have three starting skills available. While you can chose more than 1 Role, you are limited with the amount of Skills you can learn by the amount of Skill Points you have available. You begin the game with 3 Skill Points, and gain 1 Point every 3 levels. Likewise, you start with 3 Ability Points, and gain 1 every 5 levels.
Please note that the Talents shown in the image above are placeholders. There will be more available on Launch.
As you can see from the screenshots above, I’ve begun work on class skills, and that’s taken up almost all of the rest of my time. There’s a lot planned. As I said, every class has 3 starting skills, and then approximately 6 more skills each. Which is about the minimum amount that will be needed for Alpha. Here’s the first 3 Archer Skills in action:
Skill leveling has been slightly reworked. For a number of reasons, the most important of which is balance, the ability to level up each individual skill has been removed. Instead, a skill’s effectiveness is tied to a percentage of your weapon damage + a percentage of the skill’s main stat. For example, The Archer skill Scatter Shot deals 50% weapon damage + 60% dexterity. This means that your abilities will level with you, and you will not have to worry about certain abilities becoming underpowered. It also means your most effective skills will be those that complement your stat build.
Skills can only be used once they have been learnt. When you read a Spellbook, you gain the skill, but you must spend a skill point in it to be able to use it. Since you only gain a Skill Point every few levels, this could lead to you having to “forget” certain skills in order to learn new ones. Once a skill is forgotten, you will need to find it’s corresponding Spellbook to re-learn it.
- Added a new loot system which learns to prioritise gear stat roles based on the type of gear you choose to equip.
- Added female character graphics.
- Added a load more hair, eye, and mouth graphics.
- Changed terrain generation: a greater variety of room sizes will now spawn. Small rooms tend to bunch together, or join the edges of larger ones. More corridors, more crossroads, and less space wasted.
- Added support for skills which persist over turns, have multiple activation phases, or do not require a target to cast.
- Rescaled all equipment stats so that each new gear piece always offers an upgrade.
- Rescaled the hit rate on all unit’s attacks as Claustrophobia had become the Game of Misses (you hit or you die).
- Fixed a massive bug in the UI refresh code which had been causing graphical glitches from the beginning.
- Fixed a rare bug where two enemies would stack on top of each other.
That is all! Don’t forget to leave me your comments, and, as always, thanks for reading!
Until next time,