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TIGSource ForumsDeveloperPlaytestingPhantasmal: Roguelike Action Horror (Web Player 0.37.03 Updated)
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Author Topic: Phantasmal: Roguelike Action Horror (Web Player 0.37.03 Updated)  (Read 13517 times)
joe_eyemobi
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« on: March 06, 2014, 05:18:11 PM »

Announcement:
Our Kickstarter is now live!

Please Support us  Gentleman



-------------
Hey Guys,
The game has undergone a significant update since 2 months ago.  Much of the feedback that has been given here has been incorporated, e.g. improved AI (pathfinding, hit feedback, stealth), and a far reduced presence of guns (only 1 gun locker per level now).

The previous version devolved into a shoot 'em up once players had enough guns, with the present version, stealth is now a more viable tactic.

The main improvements are as follows:
  • Stealth - some creatures are blind, but will react to sound.  Keeping the torch off will lower your detection even to creatures with sight
  • Creating too much noise from fighting, running around, or knocking into things will eventually wake the sleeper (sort of like a Pyramid Head)
  • Guns create the most noise - the more powerful ones create a large sound radius and disturb the sleeper the most
  • AI - the main creature (The Starved) will roam around the building randomly.  They now use Astar pathfinding to locate you

Please have a go, and let me know what you think!

Unity Web Player:
NEW! 9 July 2014 Web Player Link 37.03 300MB

Updated 8 June 2014
Download link (v0.36.33) Pre-Alpha Demo: PC Download


Gameplay (v0.36.33)

TIG Devlog

« Last Edit: September 14, 2014, 06:38:37 PM by joe_eyemobi » Logged

yaomon17
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« Reply #1 on: March 06, 2014, 05:50:33 PM »

The bottom of the screen cuts off for me when not in fullscreen :\
I've never been a fan of horror games because I don't really enjoy being terrified so its safe to say that this game has a great atmosphere based on my reactions. The ambient noise is really top notch. The lightning might give someone a seizure though. Overall, great scary mood, top quality atmosphere.. 10/10 would not play.
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joe_eyemobi
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« Reply #2 on: March 06, 2014, 05:59:04 PM »

Thanks Yaomon - does the screen cut off in the demo or the video?  If it's the game what resolution does it cut off at?  I probably should have put that the minimum res needed would be 1024X768 for the game. 

Cheers for the feedback!  Beer!  Hehe no worries about not being into this genre - I have a few friends who also can't stand horror movies or games either  Smiley

The bottom of the screen cuts off for me when not in fullscreen :\
I've never been a fan of horror games because I don't really enjoy being terrified so its safe to say that this game has a great atmosphere based on my reactions. The ambient noise is really top notch. The lightning might give someone a seizure though. Overall, great scary mood, top quality atmosphere.. 10/10 would not play.
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yaomon17
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« Reply #3 on: March 07, 2014, 12:50:19 PM »

Thanks Yaomon - does the screen cut off in the demo or the video?  If it's the game what resolution does it cut off at?  I probably should have put that the minimum res needed would be 1024X768 for the game. 

Cheers for the feedback!  Beer!  Hehe no worries about not being into this genre - I have a few friends who also can't stand horror movies or games either  Smiley
It cuts off here like so:
http://puu.sh/7mAuq.jpg
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Thordur
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« Reply #4 on: March 07, 2014, 02:04:51 PM »

First of all... that's damn impressive for a mere "proof of concept"! Smiley

Anyhoo... played one go (at which point my son woke up screaming, scaring the living sh** out of me) and here are a few pointers of the top of my head in no particular order, although I should probably mention that I have very limited experience with horror (especially survival horror, which this kind'a felt like) so just keep that in mind if some of my comments turn out to be "genre inappropriate":

  • Again, damn fine first impression! Very pro Smiley
  • Scary atmosphere from the getgo
  • Dead military guys twitched a bit (and not in the "scary-fresh-corpse-or-zombie-awakening" kind of way but in the "epileptic-guy-having-a really-bad-day" kind of way or even just a "buggy-rigidbody-can't-find-equilibrium-in-a-physics-engine" kind of way)
  • Felt kind of lost right away... big room, lots of exits... wanted guidance at the very start. This may be an intentional "horror" thing, producing this feeling of being lost or being overwhelmed by your environment but this early on I just wasn't emerged enough to care
  • Wandered around a bit, found scary ass green flames and walked into them against my better judgement (cause the aimless wandering was getting tiresome) and got teleported someplace where two of the scariest burnt-to-a-crisp-faceless-armless-creeps I've seen in a long time jumped me. It would have been a top-notch horror moment if it hadn't been for the 5-10 second loading lag between entry and exit
  • Something about the "family portraits" of the faceless hanging on the wall after my journey through the green flames (at least I hadn't noticed them before) was also really off-putting (in a good horror kind of way)
  • The scaryness of the faceless got lessened a bit though after a couple more encounters where I actually had time too see them well and how extremely far they stretch their neck and body when attacking with that pecking move (saw it from the side)... it reminded me somehow of the chicken dance and hence the creepyness factor dropped somewhat
  • The spiders looked kinda drunk and confused when walking around
  • Sound effects and ambient sounds were really spooky the whole time by the way... kept my heart pounding
  • So did the constant yet unpredictable flicker of lightning
  • Just all in all a super scary atmosphere and environment
  • Some of the doors were acting up though... noticed one that opened the wrong way (i.e. the side with the door handle was anchored to the wall while the part with the hinges swung open. It also seemed to take too wide an arc, sort of popping all out of the door frame in the swing and then hovering in mid air

That's about it for now I think. I realize btw. that this is a PoC and hence rough around the edges and unpolished and bugs and such are to be expected but I thought I'd mention all I could think of just the same... you never know what might be useful. Smiley

Generally it's promising... very much so... guess you just have to find a good "hook" of sorts... not sure what that might be though. Like I said... not a big Horror guy but of the top of my head there are two things that I'm find interesting (without them actually having to be any good for all I know) to see:
  • Gradual progression similar through ever more complex and scary and twisted and crasy stages, where the horror and madness (even the environment might grow twisty and crooked) increases bit by bit... like someones decent into madness. Think; the Portal progression experience, but with Lovecraftian madness & horror
  • Somehow using the environment more to pass by or escape from the faceless (or spiders or zombies or whatever). Having weapons, at least this early on, gives you way too much sense of power and control and security (until you run out of ammo that is)

Anyway... enjoyed it a lot... gotta run... son woke up again... he's sick the poor guy Sad
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Thordur Matthiasson | Designer @ Loomus Games | Currently working on this: http://www.loomus.com/prismatica/
joe_eyemobi
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« Reply #5 on: March 07, 2014, 02:50:19 PM »

Hey Thordur thanks very much for your highly detailed feedback!  Coffee
This is really helpful, I'll add the bugs straight into my defect log. 

It's actually great to find a fresh player who hasn't played too many games of this genre to read about their reactions.

That's an excellent point about the frustration of getting lost.  Even while playing myself, I had that problem occasionally as well.  I was considering something like the ability to drop limited flares so that you know where you've been or marking the walls.

I really like the idea of a descent into madness that you mentioned, that's something I will definitely try to work in.  I might have to fire up the Call of Cthulu again for inspiration, that game has some pretty cool insanity mechanics back in the day. Crazy

Anyway thanks again this was really helpful! 

Hope the little guy gets better too Smiley

First of all... that's damn impressive for a mere "proof of concept"! Smiley

Anyhoo... played one go (at which point my son woke up screaming, scaring the living sh** out of me) and here are a few pointers of the top of my head in no particular order, although I should probably mention that I have very limited experience with horror (especially survival horror, which this kind'a felt like) so just keep that in mind if some of my comments turn out to be "genre inappropriate":
...
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Flatgub
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« Reply #6 on: March 14, 2014, 03:56:59 AM »

Now usually i'm absolutely terrified of horror games, but the addition of procedural generation overrides my common sense and i'm now incredibly interested in this project. I'd love to see what comes out of this! 2spooky4me  Blink _ Blink
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joe_eyemobi
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« Reply #7 on: March 14, 2014, 03:39:20 PM »

Thanks Flatgub!  Yeah please give it a go - we'd love to hear your feedback  Coffee
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HellaciousPuppy
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« Reply #8 on: March 14, 2014, 06:52:12 PM »

Wow, really scary. I love it!
It's hard to find good horror games that are genuinely scary and with replay value.
I really love Dead Space, but as you say, once you learn the deterministic enemy behaviour, it become just action rather than horror.
Great stuff, will keep an eye on this one.
 
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joe_eyemobi
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« Reply #9 on: March 14, 2014, 08:01:15 PM »

Thanks HellaciousPuppy!  Yeah the AI will be crucial in this sort of game - I'm not sure how we'll implement it yet, but some kind of evolving AI is the vision  Wizard
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HellaciousPuppy
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« Reply #10 on: March 15, 2014, 03:07:15 PM »

Just a suggestion for the AI.

A good/easy way is to program a 'perfect' AI, such as using A* pathfinding through waypoints to track the player from anywhere on the map. and perhaps put higher cost on points in front of player so they prefer to sneak up behind.

Then just dumb it down by slapping on restrictions in variable ways:
  • vision range
  • vision field of view
  • speed
  • special behaviours like 'lurk', 'sneak', 'charge' or 'sidestep'
  • timeout for losing sight of player
  • random perturbations of pathfinding 'costs'

Enemy evolution/learning can be achieved by relaxing the constraints.

Anyway, just an idea. I'd be interested in hearing about the method you finally decide on.  Gentleman
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joe_eyemobi
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« Reply #11 on: March 15, 2014, 03:58:12 PM »

Awesome thanks for the excellent suggestions Hellacious!  Toast Left

These pointers are definitely really helpful.  The AI is at the top of my list to upgrade from the basic ones that are currently in the game.

I've picked up a couple of unity assets (incl Aron G's Astar project) so I will be spending some time figuring out how to integrate them in.

I particularly like the special behaviors (lurk, sneak, sidestep) you mentioned - those are going straight into the enhancements backlog  Coffee


Just a suggestion for the AI.

A good/easy way is to program a 'perfect' AI, such as using A* pathfinding through waypoints to track the player from anywhere on the map. and perhaps put higher cost on points in front of player so they prefer to sneak up behind.

Then just dumb it down by slapping on restrictions in variable ways:
  • vision range
  • vision field of view
  • speed
  • special behaviours like 'lurk', 'sneak', 'charge' or 'sidestep'
  • timeout for losing sight of player
  • random perturbations of pathfinding 'costs'

Enemy evolution/learning can be achieved by relaxing the constraints.

Anyway, just an idea. I'd be interested in hearing about the method you finally decide on.  Gentleman
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joe_eyemobi
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« Reply #12 on: March 15, 2014, 08:37:17 PM »

Hi Guys,
Just had an update to 0.3. Had a few fixes to the defects raised as well as a few new additions:
- new spitter enemy
- tweaks to the item drops so that they don't appear quite as abundantly as in 0.2
- restricting enemy variations in the earlier levels
- stopped enemies from spawning too close the the player start

Replacing the AI with a proper one is at the top of the list, although it will probably also be the most time consuming.

Webplayer: webplayer

It's about 350MB, so if you prefer you can download the PC player.

Download link (v0.3): PC Download
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joe_eyemobi
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« Reply #13 on: March 30, 2014, 01:57:29 AM »

Hi Guys, we have a new trailer kindly created by Starving In Style.  It's still in draft format, hence the unity editor windows and mouse cursors in the scene  Embarrassed  But please give us some feedback on how we can improve!  Beer!





p.s. does anyone know how to embed the preview pic of the video in here?
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joe_eyemobi
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« Reply #14 on: April 06, 2014, 02:36:09 AM »

v0.5 released
Release notes:
- new makeshift melee weapons - some can be taken from the environment
- tweaked Shunned God animations
- tweaked insanity effects
- introduction of a points system

https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B9guYNctyOMsQ2xCUU9XMDc5WTQ/edit?usp=sharing
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joe_eyemobi
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« Reply #15 on: April 09, 2014, 06:27:57 PM »

Hey Guys! We've made quite a few updates. There will also be a complete overhaul of the creatures in the game, courtesy of our resident art expert Euge:






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Minion Studios
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« Reply #16 on: April 15, 2014, 07:41:31 PM »

Oh, man! This was a thrill to play... excellent lighting and materials, absolutely genius sound effects and post-process work!

The gameplay is quite good, better than a lot of FPS... The only trouble I had was the lack of feedback when I shot a monster. The arms are placed just right - I would suggest having the right arm come from the right instead of center on aiming... feels a bit unnatural. I really like the animations and the feeling of weight to the gun.

The idea of a procedural mansion is a bit strange at first, but it's really interesting. I played over and over just to see the variety. I understand it's not done, but I was very confused about the goal of the game and the story behind the mansion itself. (This did make me want to explore further, though.)

Please keep the FOV shift and near-death effects, it made me manic and vulnerable... that feels perfect in a game like this!

Overall, I can't wait to see more enemies and more animations and feedback states!

Wow those sound effects were awesome!

This game is really well done and I will definitely check out any further iterations.
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joe_eyemobi
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« Reply #17 on: April 15, 2014, 08:44:32 PM »

Mr Minion!  Thanks for the fantastic and highly constructive suggestions!  Beer!
That's a good point about the feedback - we're using a placeholder AI at the moment so they are limited to walking in a straight line towards you  Smiley After the KS (if we are successful) we plan to integrate a comprehensive AI package including A* pathing to make the monsters intelligent.

The art will also receive a major upgrade in the next two weeks - the main "beserker" will be redone soon.  

Glad you enjoyed the insanity effects! We will refine those further as we proceed too.

Thanks again for your recommendations!  Toast Left


Oh, man! This was a thrill to play... excellent lighting and materials, absolutely genius sound effects and post-process work!
.....
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joe_eyemobi
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« Reply #18 on: April 16, 2014, 02:20:47 PM »

Arachnophobes unite! Creepy new spider replacement by Euge T! Blink

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joe_eyemobi
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« Reply #19 on: April 20, 2014, 12:58:53 PM »

Hi all, v0.6 is ready (290MB).
Release notes:
- The main creature now navigates with Astar Pathfinding and uses a state machine
- Increased film grain to give it an old-timey feel.
- Increased fog to make the darkness deeper at range.

https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B9guYNctyOMsakVHVHQ1eEpJV2s/edit?usp=sharing
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