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September 04, 2015, 07:43:55 pm

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TIGSource ForumsFeedbackDevLogsHellas - greek vases v23
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Ninja Dodo
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« Reply #280 on: March 26, 2014, 03:27:09 pm »

So here's a long overdue update on what's going on with this project:

Hellas has been effectively on hold for about six months now. My excuse is I have been mostly working on finishing this, and animating for this, and this. For most of the last two years or so I've been alternating between my own projects and freelance animation work. Sometimes this has meant very little progress here.

So, good and bad news: Since January I've been doing full-time animation work, which once again means less time for vases... but, on the plus-side my employer has no problem with me continuing my projects on my own time (which is worryingly rare by the way) so what free time I have will be put to good use. And this does mean I'll have more budget for things like going to festivals, buying necessary materials etc, or maybe a research trip.

Now that I've wrapped up a few of those other projects I can get back to Hellas with renewed focus. Here's some stuff I'm working on now:



A first attempt at translating that rough menu mockup I did earlier to an actual thing, all of the current test levels in one place. Eventually this will be more like: STORY, VERSUS, OPTIONS and CREDITS or something like that, with separate galleries breaking individual stories into parts.

More soon.
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Ninja Dodo
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« Reply #281 on: April 13, 2014, 11:02:46 am »

Art stuff in progress:

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Ninja Dodo
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« Reply #282 on: May 10, 2014, 12:48:05 am »

Since last I showed footage of the game it seems animated GIFs have become the agreed upon method of showing games in action. Far be it from to resist this new development:



I'm working on the player being able to lift and throw heavy objects like stones without divine intervention, with some temporary thumbnail sprites. The skull and bones thing is a debug visualization for the damage an object emits, colour-coded for who owns the damage (in this case player 1). This is to encourage emergent situations - anything that emits damage will damage anything that can receive damage - but I can also disable friendly fire where necessary or have certain enemies damage other enemies, but not others of the same type... like a boar will charge past other boars but it will crush a skeleton, a rock thrown by the gods does neutral damage, etc.
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sionco
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« Reply #283 on: May 10, 2014, 07:13:56 am »

I love the menu, beautiful. can't wait for this to be finished!
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Ninja Dodo
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« Reply #284 on: January 17, 2015, 09:32:17 am »

Some new sprites:

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Ninja Dodo
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« Reply #285 on: January 17, 2015, 02:06:02 pm »

Working on some templates for more vases:



Based on diagram of different types, with layers arranged in such a way that I can easily create new ones.
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Ninja Dodo
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« Reply #286 on: February 10, 2015, 02:54:50 pm »

New video:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LtreErpdqMk

There's a new demo build as well, though this more of an incremental update as the demo does not include some of the WIP features shown in this and previous videos (eg the lion). Does have the heavy lifting though.

Download: http://www.ninjadodo.net/temp/hellas/hellas_v23_1_win_demo.zip
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sionco
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« Reply #287 on: February 11, 2015, 04:15:23 pm »

it's looking good!  This looks like it will be really fun to play, can't wait!

I like the idea of collecting the helmets!
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Mongolianmisfit
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« Reply #288 on: February 21, 2015, 03:01:11 pm »

I've been tracking this game since it first popped up on indiedb.com. I still excited for its release and I'm loving the new demo build. In fact, I made a TIG account just so I could post on this thread. I really hope this game isn't abandoned, as even in the wake of Apotheon, Hellas still feels unique enough to have its own audience. I eagerly await more updates on development. Good luck!
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Ninja Dodo
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« Reply #289 on: February 22, 2015, 01:16:02 am »

@sionco: Thanks ^^

@Mongolianmisfit: Thank you. It's going slowly but it's definitely still going. Smiley
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KRSplat
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« Reply #290 on: March 16, 2015, 11:21:42 pm »

Cool prototype! It feels like a fun game  Ninja
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Franklins Ghost
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« Reply #291 on: March 22, 2015, 07:20:50 am »

Nice to see you're still working on this Smiley

Liking the new gameplay video, the new additions seem to work really well.
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Ninja Dodo
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« Reply #292 on: March 28, 2015, 03:55:33 am »

@KRSplat & Franklins: Thanks. Smiley


So as I'm continuing this devlog, I may as well elaborate on some recent design decisions...

When I finished the prototype I thought I'd covered most of the key gameplay elements and the rest of the game would mostly be level and enemy design, even though I knew in the back of my mind certain elements of the stories I wanted to cover would require new mechanics if I was going to stay more or less true to the source material. It turns out that some of these new elements are trickier to design and implement than I thought (welcome to game development : P ). Case in point: moving platforms.

Another such problem was the carrying of objects.



The hero, Herakles, does quite a lot of lifting things and it's also somewhat of a recurring visual theme in Greek art. Being able to lift and throw objects was always going to be something the game would need.

Question was, how to add this in a way that fit elegantly with existing controls?

The game is most fun when the player is moving around so it was important to avoid limiting mobility too much, but also to keep the system similar to spears so as not to be confusing.

Contstraints:
- want to be able to pick up things quickly and easily without having to stop
- don't pick up stone when intending to do a sword attack
- avoid adding new buttons if possible (needs to work on gamepad + less confusing)
- should be intuitive/consistent

Option one: Make them exactly like spears where pressing ATTACK near any heavy object will lift it, but this would mean accidentally picking up stones when you want to attack if you stand on or near a heavy object...

Option two: DOWN + ATTACK, like Spelunky, but since duck/block brings everything to a halt this conflicts with the aim of keeping the player mobile. Also prevents sword attack from duck/block near liftable objects.

Option three: I considered HELD ATTACK to lift but such a delay would also effectively mean stopping the player, preventing mobility.

Another question: should I even allow picking up objects while you are standing on them, Super Mario Bros 2 style? My initial thought was no and while this made logical sense, it felt unintuitive having to first step down to grab an object and broke the flow of movement.

Option four: I didn't want to add a separate button for grabbing objects since it would be confusing when you grab spears with ATTACK, plus the game is already bordering on too many buttons.

My solution (as seen in v23) was to create separate armed and unarmed states which the player could switch between with DROP/CANCEL so that they can put away their sword and then simply press ATTACK, same as spears, to pick up any heavy object. Also allows for the possibility of using ATTACK as a contextual action or talk button when unarmed, which may be useful later.

Fairly happy with how it's working now.
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Ninja Dodo
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« Reply #293 on: March 28, 2015, 04:33:42 am »

If you follow my other project, Guppy, you might already be aware that I'm looking into supporting Mac going forward. I've been tinkering with it for a bit and it seems to be working now. I've uploaded a build here if anyone wants to try it out:

http://www.ninjadodo.net/temp/mactest/Hellas.app.zip

I was going to do Linux for v23 as well, but I somehow managed to break my virtual Ubuntu and am having trouble getting it working again so, uh, that will be later.
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