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TIGSource ForumsCommunityDevLogsDungeon Dashers - Fast Paced Turn Based Dungeon Crawling [GREENLIT]
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Author Topic: Dungeon Dashers - Fast Paced Turn Based Dungeon Crawling [GREENLIT]  (Read 147596 times)
Bandreus
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« Reply #320 on: October 10, 2012, 05:46:49 AM »

Yep, that sort of teaching through gameplay is what I have planned for the first couple of levels. But I don't want it to be too slow either. I don't think it takes very long to understand the basics of the game once you know a few things.

Yeah, I agree with you. But I think we as developers easily tend to be affected by tunnel-vision when talking how easily the basics of a game can be understood.

You don't really need to make the "teaching" levels too slow, but try not to introduce too many new elements at once, as a new player feels much more confidence when he only needs to grasp a couple things at a time.

That would be my suggestion put in different words Wink
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JigxorAndy
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« Reply #321 on: October 10, 2012, 05:52:13 AM »

Yep, that sort of teaching through gameplay is what I have planned for the first couple of levels. But I don't want it to be too slow either. I don't think it takes very long to understand the basics of the game once you know a few things.

Yeah, I agree with you. But I think we as developers easily tend to be affected by tunnel-vision when talking how easily the basics of a game can be understood.

You don't really need to make the "teaching" levels too slow, but try not to introduce too many new elements at once, as a new player feels much more confidence when he only needs to grasp a couple things at a time.

That would be my suggestion put in different words Wink

I'll create a new "first" level for the next build and see how it goes with everyone. I think I'm pretty good at putting myself in "someone else's shoes" when it comes to this part of design, so I'll give it a decent go.

I'm struggling with working out what the Wizard's permanent spell should be (the one he's always given), and so that's something I need to work out before I build a tutorial/level around it. It needs to be something that isn't overpowered and has a short to no cooldown (since it will be his only spell to begin with). But I also want to resist it being simple damage, since that's what the elf already has with her arrow.
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« Reply #322 on: October 10, 2012, 06:22:02 AM »

The thing is, if you want to see how well the tutorial level(s) work, you need to take someone who never saw/played the game before, put her in front of it, and see if how things go. But yeah, you will need to iterate more as you develop the game, so no need to over-stress this now.

As for the natural skills, I'm assuming Blink (mobility) for Rogue, Cleave (melee AoE) for Knight and Bow (ranged attack) for Elf.

So, I think something like these might fare well for the Wiz.

Ice spell (can't remember the name sry): the one which freezes the target for 1 turn. Just make it do less dmg than Elf Bow attack. Also, the Cooldown would need to be at least 1 turn, meaning "You cannot fire the spell during the turn following the last time you cust it". This would be to prevent players freezing the same enemy over and over.

But anyway, you might consider other options too. I'm envisioning every Wiz skills having at least 1 turn cooldown, which means the Wiz wont have any spammable skills (like the Elf bow attack, for instance), nor he's supposed to engage in melee, unless he casted some sort of defensive spell.

So in my opinion, a good alternative might be a ranged AoE damage spell, since it's probably what most players would be likely to pick as a Wiz skill anyways.

Something like a Fireball with an AoE pattern like

111
121
111

Meaning, the tile in the middle gets full damage, the remaining 8 tiles get half of that.

This would have the potential to hit 9 enemies, which is unlikely, but might still be effective vs tightly packed groups of foes. Monsters with low max HP, or enemies previously weakened by other attacks, might die in just one shot, which really is the main strong point with Magic Users in most tactical games.

You might think about some other kind of skill, but all I can't really think about skills which are not either more complicated or not overpowered as a starter skill right now.
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JigxorAndy
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« Reply #323 on: October 10, 2012, 07:43:35 AM »

Day 284
* Designed ways to make each enemy unique and what's different about each of them (need to implement a fair bit)
* Added more enemy portraits from Chris
* Designed a couple of new spells/skills
* Worked out the main storyline for the game

I mostly did design stuff today including story writing and the grouping of levels and their elements. Will work out the wizard's skill and then press on with building early levels. Been designing stuff the past couple of days, would be good to do more implementation.

Very sleepy!
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JigxorAndy
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« Reply #324 on: October 11, 2012, 07:01:10 AM »

Day 285
* Added Music Engine - multiple tracks which fade in and out
* Cleave skill bugfix - sometimes wouldn't grant crits
* Gave wizard the fireball as a permanent skill
* Added new level win sound instead of the fanfare - which I didn't think suited the mood on all levels. It's too happy.
* Added Charge skill for Knight - allows the Knight to move in a straight line until he hits an enemy, really fun to charge through multiple boxes. Intending to add Knockback to the enemy as well.
* Added new portraits for monsters by Chris.

Spent most of the day getting the Music Engine in. Now in future builds there won't be random tracks playing here and there - instead there will be a handful of tracks that fade in and out of one another. There's also a Battle music track which I have set to play when there more than 4 enemies in a room. I'll probably change that to be triggered by level.

The Charge skill for the Knight is really fun to play with. It lets the Knight be able to get into the middle of a fight easily. I'll probably need to put a range limit on it at some stage, but it works well for now. The Knight's skill is going to be used to smash some obstacles that only he can destroy.

Chris has almost finished the portraits for all of the enemy characters so far. He only has to do the "overgrown" rabbits.

Philip has started a new tileset consiting of grass and trees! It's early so far, but I know it's going to look really exciting when it's done, adding a lot of variety to the game.

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Bandreus
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« Reply #325 on: October 11, 2012, 07:13:58 AM »

I'm pumped up about the latest updates!

I'm especially interested by
- "Designed ways to make each enemy unique and what's different about each of them (need to implement a fair bit)"
- "Designed a couple of new spells/skills"

Mind to elaborate a bit more on these?

Also, I'm very positive about the charge skill  Evil I think it's a neat way to deal with the Knight's issues with accomplishing much into fights. Can't wait to try all of these out first-hand.

Also very good to hear a proper sound engine is in. More music awesomeness  Kiss
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Uykered
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« Reply #326 on: October 11, 2012, 04:00:38 PM »

I like the Dash idea for the Knight, help him get into fights quicker.
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JigxorAndy
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« Reply #327 on: October 11, 2012, 06:49:21 PM »

I'm pumped up about the latest updates!

I'm especially interested by
- "Designed ways to make each enemy unique and what's different about each of them (need to implement a fair bit)"
- "Designed a couple of new spells/skills"

Mind to elaborate a bit more on these?

Also, I'm very positive about the charge skill  Evil I think it's a neat way to deal with the Knight's issues with accomplishing much into fights. Can't wait to try all of these out first-hand.

Also very good to hear a proper sound engine is in. More music awesomeness  Kiss
I will elaborate on the skills sometime. I always post these devlogs before I go to bed, so I'm normally pretty sleepy! I'll be adding a heal skill to the Elf and a chain lightning spell to the Wizard soon.

As for the enemies, I didn't want them all to be "walk to player, attack". So I've come up with things that make almost every enemy unique. Examples are:
  • Zombie - respawns on death
  • Witch - Sap AP/Heal
  • Big Spider - spawns small spiders on death/slowing web
  • Bandit - steals gold on hit
  • Fire elemental - leaves a fire trail behind him
  • Armoured Skeleton - gives damage aura to surrounding enemies
  • Scarab - Suicide unit
  • Lich King - Spawns skeletons
  • Minotaur - Can charge in a straight line until it hits a player
  • Bat - Can fly over spikes/obstacles



I like the Dash idea for the Knight, help him get into fights quicker.
Yeah it seems to work well so far!
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« Reply #328 on: October 13, 2012, 07:51:32 AM »

Day 287
* Fixed bugs with battle music, cutscenes/loading levels
* Added markers under all of the enemies within range of a ranged attack
* Started developing a new tutorial level with dialogue
* Added new trigger actions/conditions to the editor
* Reduced melee damage of ranged units (wizard/elf) to half of their ranged damage
* Added "cinematic sliders" during talking/reading signs - blackbars on the top and bottom of the screen

Pretty happy with how today went. I did a lot of work on the first "cutscene" and initial dialogue. It feels much more like a game now and not just a fun engine. There's some real progression happening so I'm excited to show everyone the kind of dialogue and direction I'll be taking the game.

Adding markers under all of the targets you can hit was something I have been meaning to do but never got around to. It was really simple to implement and only took 15 minutes or so, so I'm happy I did that as well. It makes it more polished already.

I'll keep working on this level tomorrow.

Chris has finished all of the portraits for the enemies that have been created so far. Philip is working on the new tileset still but also managed to create a destroyable obstacle which only the Knight will be able to dispose of.

Needs some fixes, like moving the text box down and using a better portrait border, but here's what it looks like now when there's dialogue:
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« Reply #329 on: October 13, 2012, 09:43:50 AM »

Good to see some nice progress is being made, must feel very rewarding isn't it? Wink
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« Reply #330 on: October 13, 2012, 07:39:40 PM »

Good to see some nice progress is being made, must feel very rewarding isn't it? Wink

It is! It's hard to see the progress sometimes when I've been working on it day after day, but when I go and play an older build and then play the current one, that's where I can see some achievement. Though there's still a fair bit to do!

I can tell when a particular part of the game is really fun because it makes me smile unexpectedly Smiley
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« Reply #331 on: October 14, 2012, 07:45:32 AM »

Day 288
* Added obstacles which can only be broken (and passed) with the Knight's Charge skill
* Added switches which can only be activated by the Elf's arrow (code but no graphics yet - I don't know what kind of switch would suit)
* Changed stalagmites so that they do not block blinks or ranged attacks.
* Furthered developed tutorial level

The code for the arrow switches took a while today and wasn't a lot of fun. But it's done now! It's something that I needed to put in.

More levels tomorrow. Perhaps a chain lightning spell as well.
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« Reply #332 on: October 14, 2012, 09:51:18 AM »

I take it you are going to sell the game once it's done, judging by the fact you are able to hire out artists..? Smiley
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Uykered
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« Reply #333 on: October 14, 2012, 02:34:02 PM »

Yeah you can already preorder it from the site.
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JigxorAndy
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« Reply #334 on: October 15, 2012, 04:47:48 AM »

I take it you are going to sell the game once it's done, judging by the fact you are able to hire out artists..? Smiley

Yeah you can already preorder it from the site.

What Alastair said! If you buy the game now you can play the current in development build.
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« Reply #335 on: October 15, 2012, 04:54:26 AM »

Day 289
Today I didn't do any programming.

I had a fair few discussions about different assets and design elements in the game. Philip is still working on the forest tileset which is coming along nicely now with some tree canopies.

Tomorrow I will be continuing work on the first level and then jumping into the following levels. I haven't sent the build that I'm working on now to anyone, but I think the introductory cutscene might be a little long - depends how interesting you find it I suppose. But for a game that is all about being "streamlined" it might do with being shorter. Having said that, it's the first level, so that can sometimes be expected. I still think it's fun.

I tried to write out a list of every single thing I have to do to finish the game (or the big components at least). It's manageable. There are a few bugs that have been in for a while that I am still yet to fix (e.g. the draw order of some sprites), but I neglect to work on those in favour of adding other features.
« Last Edit: October 15, 2012, 05:14:23 AM by JigxorAndy » Logged

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« Reply #336 on: October 16, 2012, 03:27:19 AM »

Day 290
* Fixed draw order bugs (should no longer "flicker" between two items at the same Y position)
* Added more gibs. More blood. More body parts on death.
* Added the blue flame Shrine back in which now serves a switch which only the Wizard can activate
* Changed it so that you can no longer move around after finishing a level
* Finished implementing the first level with all dialogue etc.

I did a fair bit of work today which I'm pretty happy with. I got up early this morning, hence I'm actually posting a devblog before 3AM for a change.

I started the day by fixing the draw order stuff which I thought would have been more difficult but really didn't take very long. There were a few kinks and a few special cases with certain objects but it seems to be more robust than what was in before. There will be one or two objects still to fix, but they will all be patched as they come up.

I spent a fair bit of time playing around with making enemy deaths more fun. I had this image in my head of killing an enemy and his body would fly off a little bit and land on the ground as if you'd just smacked him really hard. I tested some stuff out but it didn't look very good at all. Instead I ended up cutting up the graphics a goblin into some of his body parts (head/arm/leg/torso), covering them in blood and making them fly out when he dies. I only did this for the Goblin but tomorrow I plan to do it for all the creatures as it shouldn't take very long. And don't worry - for all you perfectionists out there, only one type of each part will come out. He won't explode into 3 heads.

In the shower, I decided to make the level just end when you complete the objectives. The main reason for this is dialogue purposes. In some scenes I wouldn't imagine it would make sense to have some epic dialogue at the end and then continue to walk around. It feels more straightforward this way. I also had an idea that perhaps most levels could be ended by standing on the portals at the end, however they wouldn't appear until all other objectives are complete (e.g. Kill all enemies).

I finished implementing the first level which I'm pleased about. It is a "tutorial" so it took a while to put together in an intuitive way. I haven't completely tested it with anyone yet so it will be good to get some initial reactions and see if it makes sense. I think it's pretty straightforward but I won't know until it's playtested.

Chris did a portrait for a Scarab which will be an enemy in the Egyptian tileset levels.

Tomorrow I'd like to start making the next level and weaving more story into it all.


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JigxorAndy
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« Reply #337 on: October 18, 2012, 07:17:04 AM »

Day 292
* Added bell graphic (for the switch that can be shot by arrows)
* Added more gibs to other enemies
* Built most of the second level
* Fixed bugs with "blank screens" (was to do with legacy network code)
* Implemented vertical direction for the metal gate
* Fixed bugs with displaying multi-line cutscene text

I added new gibs and body parts which fly off when you kill an enemy but I think they are too distracting at the moment. They kind of block the view of some of the smaller enemies on the field and make it a bit harder to see what's going on. They also don't really match some attacks, such as the Rogue's weak stabbing. Perhaps they could only gib on a critical hit + some spells. But then that seems quite arbitrary and I don't really want to have to look at each individual attack and wonder if it should gib or not. I could also look at the damage done. If an enemy is "overkilled" by a certain amount of hitpoints, it could gib.

I designed and implemented level 2. It's functionally there but there are no niceties like there are in level 1. I'm quite happy with the pacing and flow of level 1 and I did some more tweaks to it today.

I plan to develop another level or two tomorrow - getting their functionality in but perhaps skipping on the polish. When I say polish in regards to level design I'm talking about things such as dialogue, camera movement when pulling a lever, other triggers, etc.

I'll need to make quests give you new recipes as well.

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« Reply #338 on: October 18, 2012, 10:51:57 AM »

New UI and character cursor is looking very nice Smiley
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JigxorAndy
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« Reply #339 on: October 18, 2012, 07:14:28 PM »

New UI and character cursor is looking very nice Smiley

Thank you! I think it did help a lot in making everything more game-like and less engine-like.
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