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Claustrophobia: The Downward Struggle
Claustrophobia Development Log #8
March 21, 2014 - The Indie Forge
Greetings everyone! Welcome to Claustrophobia Dev Log #8! You'll be pleased to hear I've made a lot of progress over the last few weeks. I'm getting pretty close to a fully featured (all be it a tad simplistic for now) engine. This means I'm that bit nearer to being able to throw some content in and start messing about with some proper gameplay! At which point we can start talking about videos, demos, and dare I say it, Early Access.
First off, a little bit of social news: Claustrophobia now has both a Facebook page, and a TIGSource Forums Dev Log. The TIGSource forums log if the place to go if you want updates as they happen; I'll be documenting all progress as it happens there, then summing up the week/biweek's news in these Development Logs. If you want development gifs, design chat, and other general musings, go there. If you just want tl;dr news that's been written out cleanly, stick with these Dev Logs. Or, you know, both, if you're awesome like that!
Particle & Status Effects
Moving on! Firstly, progress! The 4 frame spell and combat animations that were used in Claustrophobia v1 are gone, replaced instead by a new particle effect engine that I've written. I think you'll agree, it looks just a tiny bit better:
Of course, having poison and fire particle effects has very little point without status effects to go with them. So luckily, we now have those too. Status effects apply either positive or negative effects to the effected unit, and last a certain number of turns. I'm sure you're all familiar with how they work!
Turn Loop Optimization
Next! A lot of work has been done to optimise the main game loop. Claustrophobia v1 always started to struggle as soon as more than about 5 enemies had been discovered. This was due to the fact that the engine updated every enemy separately after the player's turn, one after the other. This meant that with more enemies discovered, the longer it took for the player's next turn.
This time, enemies all calculate their turn logic as one, right after the player has ended their turn. I'm still undecided as to whether or not the enemies will actually all carry out their turn as one, or whether they will carry them out in sequence. There are arguments for both methods.
So what's next?
Good question! Once status effects have been completed properly, there are only a few major engine features that need to be added before I can begin to call Claustrophobia a working game. These are:
- Saving and Loading
- Gear Generation (most of the logic here will carry over from v1)
- Skills and Class Creation
- Character Creation
Once they are all in, I can really start working on the massive list of content and features that I want to see in Claustrophobia. It's a daunting list, but there's so much stuff on there that I know you're going to love just as much as I'm going to enjoy working on it!
Don't forget to Facebook, Twitter, TIGSource, YouTube, carrier pigeon... And as always, thanks for reading!