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TIGSource ForumsFeedbackDevLogsArcEdge - Metroidvania / Action-RPG
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Author Topic: ArcEdge - Metroidvania / Action-RPG  (Read 9061 times)
LightEnt
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Remius
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« on: June 08, 2014, 05:48:24 pm »




This is a game i've been working at on alone for a while now, which has undergone multiple design/story/graphical/everything changes (and will likely undergo more). So here's a devlog to place advancements i guess.



General idea

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The basic vision for this game's combat is merging RPG mechanics with skill-based action. This game is more about approaching enemies with strategy, using your abilities wisely, and weighing advantages. I reference Devil May Cry and competitive fighting games alot for combo mechanics.






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This game is being created in Construct Classic. Most of the work thus far has been basic engine programming, specifically combat mechanics and physics. Once that gets to a level of solidity i'm comfortable with, updates should become more frequent.

Everything is a work in progress; all feedback and criticism is welcome and greatly appreciated!




« Last Edit: July 25, 2015, 08:48:15 am by LightEnt » Logged

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DarkWanderer
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« Reply #1 on: June 08, 2014, 10:21:23 pm »

This looks pretty cool.
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LightEnt
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Remius
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« Reply #2 on: June 12, 2014, 10:08:24 pm »

Update #1 -- The main character and Signatures -- 6/13/2014


Here's the concept of the main character. It's been a bad idea to delay actually doing this because it's been causing slight inconsistencies in some animations. But you learn as you go I guess.

In fact, that's probably going to be the theme of this devlog: "How to be unorganized when making a game".





One more indie redheaded heroine wouldn't HURT, right?


Estelle Amaranthe:
An exceptionally skilled witch and a well respected bounty hunter. Estelle makes her living collecting the bounties of beasts and local criminals. While adept in artes (magic), her calling card is the ability to effortlessly summon an energy blade at will, without the assistance of technology.

Estelle has recently ended up in the crosshairs of the Gairian military for the alleged murder of an officer. This has resulted in a rapidly increasing bounty, as the Gairian military and other bounty hunters continuously fail to subdue her.



Arcane Signature
The little symbol in the middle of her concept art is an insignia that is displayed anytime she (or anything) uses magic. It's inspired by Blazblue, one of my favorite fighting games. Here, it acts as a visual manifestation of the soul, and is unique for every individual.



I'm lazy, so it's currently acting as a placeholder logo until i can decide a proper one for the project.


« Last Edit: June 12, 2014, 10:21:56 pm by LightEnt » Logged

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bombjack
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« Reply #3 on: June 12, 2014, 11:55:47 pm »

I like the gfx and the idea. The animation also lokks great!
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LightEnt
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Remius
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« Reply #4 on: June 13, 2014, 12:00:07 am »

Update #2 -- Animating attacks, Learnin' as I go -- 6/13/2014


My current animation pipeline  


So, this is generally how my animations look now before I sprite them.



I used to try and shrink these and reuse the lineart, but the method takes forever and isn't really worth it because of the resolution difference. Now I simply use these as references when doing the actual sprites. I try to just get the keyframes down and approximate the other frames by eye.



Often ill try my hardest to reuse similar frames from other animations, but it almost always works against me, so i don't do it anymore.


Flashy crescent woes  


Quick motions like slashes really confuse me sometimes. But i feel like im starting to get better at them. I think there's a concept behind it to make them look like actual, fluid movements and not just flashy crescents. When I first started this project, i actually created keyframes of animation during the slashes.


There's only a single frame there here but it makes the slash seem awkwardly laggy to me.




I'm learning that it's kind of like the awkward difference I feel when looking at high refresh-rate televisions (like Blu-Ray movies). I used to say the movies "looked like videogames". That's because they refresh so fast that they don't simulate motion blur. And that's all the "slash" really is supposed to be. Motion Blur is how your brain fills in motion too fast to perceive.



So, these are her basic air attacks im currently working on. I'm trying to use that principle to complete these motions. Her body and swordarm twist alot in ways i'm not tweening, but hopefully in motion you'll still see it happen. Either way, the sooner I can remove that placeholder air attack the better!



« Last Edit: June 13, 2014, 12:05:10 am by LightEnt » Logged

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LightEnt
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Remius
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« Reply #5 on: June 13, 2014, 12:16:43 am »

This looks pretty cool.

I like the gfx and the idea. The animation also lokks great!


Thanks alot!
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TunaUppercut
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« Reply #6 on: June 13, 2014, 07:49:24 am »

I really like the animation and art style you are using for this project. It looks interesting.
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Sean Han Tani
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« Reply #7 on: June 14, 2014, 08:01:10 am »

following 4 metroidvania
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An adventure platformer.
Also made Anodyne
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« Reply #8 on: June 14, 2014, 08:57:25 am »

Wow...this looks absolutely amazing!  I love the art style you have going here. Definitely going to be following this!
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Amirai
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« Reply #9 on: June 14, 2014, 11:01:04 am »

Sweet, you put up a devlog, I've been wanting to find out more about this. It's looking good!

I am a bit concerned about you using construct classic, though. Speaking as someone who tried to make something substantial in it (my mini-rpg loot pursuit), I really recommend you use C2 instead. It's far better in almost every way, including being much more stable.
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Lunais
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« Reply #10 on: June 14, 2014, 02:43:35 pm »

Oh my god, her hair. I love how it animates! :D
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chuksxy
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« Reply #11 on: June 14, 2014, 05:02:52 pm »

This is beautiful
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LightEnt
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Remius
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« Reply #12 on: June 18, 2014, 12:31:03 pm »

Update #3 -- Working as intended. -- 6/18/2014


Frustrating bug that wasted hours of my li Neat feature  


I decided early on that I was going to try to do as many eye-catching unique things as my math-challenged brain and Construct would allow me to get away with. So obviously, I have to put dynamic water in the levels.



This is the best many different stupid outcomes.

For whatever reason, the waves refuse to propagate correctly in more than one direction as shown in the tutorial. Some sort of interference my logic or Construct's logic, or something. Was at this for days. Eventually, I got frustrated to the point where I stopped caring.

But before I quit, I decided to remove the waves and just keep the spring motion that was working as intended, and then apply it to all the grass sprites in the stage. Throw in some quick, cheap little "wind" code that blows through your location, and...



Voilà; moving grass!



I also just use the X-move values of the attack hitboxes to move the grass also. Works well enough. I've been playing around with this alot to use with things like shrubs, trees, even NPCs, anything I can possibly apply it to without it looking odd.

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« Reply #13 on: June 19, 2014, 06:33:21 pm »

Very interesting!
I'm gonna follow this Azn
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My stuff:
LightEnt
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Remius
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« Reply #14 on: June 30, 2014, 12:09:57 pm »

Update #4 -- Meh -- 6/29/2014


Family tragedy, left my state for a funeral for a week. Haven't had much time to work on anything really.




Everest Eyrna, a skilled swordsman fighting for the preservation of his homeland

Concept of a supporting character. Some of the side characters will act as unplayable allies during some specific sections. They're there for story reasons, but usually showcase some useful ability you don't have access to yet. This character in particular is no good at magic, but is adept at concentrating energy and using crushing blows. This will be an early powerup for unlocking areas, but becomes useful in combat against high-defense enemies.

Being an action game, all powerups that are useful for accessing new areas will have practical use in combat.

----------------------------------

This doesn't really count as an update, but I recently changed the genre from 'Metroivania' to 'Zeldavania'. I was thinking about the classification, and while Metroid's progression is powerup based, I think what people really think when they see 'Metroidvania' is 'exploration'. This game features intergral powerups, exploration and all that, but in Metroid, an ultimate goal is usually established before you start the game, requiring almost no direction to progress. Doesn't leave much room for any kind of linear story interaction though. If it does, it kind of runs the risk of coming off as annoying, personally.

Zelda (3D ones anyway) usually warm you up somehow before cutting you lose though. But the real task here is making exploration and skill-based combat, and making neither harm the other. If it didn't look stupid i'd probably name the genre as "Zeldavania May Cry" or something.

But for easy classification sake, I'm just keeping it "Metroidvania". I'm sure everyone gets it.
[/tangent]







 
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~Light

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LightEnt
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Remius
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« Reply #15 on: June 30, 2014, 12:25:03 pm »

Sweet, you put up a devlog, I've been wanting to find out more about this. It's looking good!

I am a bit concerned about you using construct classic, though. Speaking as someone who tried to make something substantial in it (my mini-rpg loot pursuit), I really recommend you use C2 instead. It's far better in almost every way, including being much more stable.

Hoo boy, yes. I struggle with CClassic's event editor quirks and memory leak issues all the time, they're quite terrifying.

There are a few reasons why i've shied away from C2 coughmoneycough but the biggest one is the fear of what i can't do with it. While i'm a believer in Scirra's decision to get ahead of HTML5, i'm just not too fond of C2 when it comes to its speed. It has tons of features and is way more stable, but it's just way weaker than classic is. If this wasn't an action game i'd hop ship though.
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LightEnt
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Remius
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« Reply #16 on: July 04, 2014, 03:09:12 pm »

Update #5 -- Optimization and AI concepts -- 7/4/2014


Even more stuff to whack!


Vast majority of my work as of late has been engine related. Managed to solve some annoying FPS dips caused by off-screen enemies, and drastically increased the amount of AI-controlled objects onscreen while maintaining 60FPS.




Hue shaders are only the beginning...

Most importantly though, the new physics optimizations have allowed me to start programming the basis for some advanced enemy features. Nearly every enemy will have variations and leader-types of themselves. And this is something i've been having fun with.




As anyone could guess, the different colors correspond to elemental strength and abilities. Normal, fire, ice, electric and arcane, ect.



Actually, most enemy variants won't even have anything to do with elements. But Slimes are  ~*~magical~*~


The yellow one is a Leader Slime. Still not much of a threat, this guy will target any weakened slime and rush over to devour it, increasing its own strength level. And type of slime it eats determines which parameters increase and which abilities it gains. (And most importantly what you can get for defeating it.)


So that's actually a lightning slime. But I haven't decided what to visually tell the slime leader apart with yet. Maybe a hat or something.


The more complex the enemy, the more drastic the variation can be, and the more dangerous a present leader can be. Some will buff or heal teammates. Some have movesets tailored for different ranges, or execute special team attacks. Some will even attack eachother. Either way, it's intended to make you approach the area differently.


One theme i really want for all enemies in this game is emergent strategy that feels organic, with the possibility to turn even simple cannonfodder enemies into situational nightmares.  Elemental Rock-Paper-Scissors is pretty boring on its own, and I don't want the player to feel discouraged from using any specific magic attack off that concept alone. The last thing I want is the player going into autopilot.


Sigh...still got alot of animations on backlog. I'll probably cover player abilities soon.



  
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makohi
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« Reply #17 on: July 05, 2014, 05:49:18 am »


This doesn't really count as an update, but I recently changed the genre from 'Metroivania' to 'Zeldavania'. I was thinking about the classification, and while Metroid's progression is powerup based, I think what people really think when they see 'Metroidvania' is 'exploration'. This game features intergral powerups, exploration and all that, but in Metroid, an ultimate goal is usually established before you start the game, requiring almost no direction to progress. Doesn't leave much room for any kind of linear story interaction though. If it does, it kind of runs the risk of coming off as annoying, personally.

Zelda (3D ones anyway) usually warm you up somehow before cutting you lose though. But the real task here is making exploration and skill-based combat, and making neither harm the other. If it didn't look stupid i'd probably name the genre as "Zeldavania May Cry" or something.

But for easy classification sake, I'm just keeping it "Metroidvania". I'm sure everyone gets it.
[/tangent]


Zelda 2?
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LightEnt
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Remius
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« Reply #18 on: July 05, 2014, 12:05:33 pm »

Zelda 2?

Hmmm, not quite. I'm thinking which word I use to classify this game isn't too useful in end. I've taken concepts from many games that are similar but fundamentally different, and any attempt to explain differences would be long-winded.

Strictly for progression though, you have story-driven objectives that are telling you to get to some place (Zelda), and your means of acquiring what you need to get there are still up to you (Metroid). But you're also able to change event sequences entirely by other means (Cave Story). There is a key feature that will handle the degree to which you can alter sequence though. Crazy


So it's inspired, but i'm not really adhering to any formula. My goal is to keep the scale realistically manageable (i'm alone here) while still providing a world and story to interact with. Action-RPG is the best word, really.


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LightEnt
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Remius
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« Reply #19 on: July 08, 2014, 11:55:35 am »

Working on air combat mechanics, feeling out physics.








You can hop cancel an air attack to reset your options in the air with correct positioning. With finishing attacks, special moves and gained movement options, I want to let players freestyle their attacks. I've been playing with a float state (Kingdom Hearts), but consistent gravity just feels alot better here.

Aerial attacks aren't really stronger than ground attacks, but they'll keep you out of reach of most enemies, and juggles keep enemies from recovering.




Also been playing with different weapon types and features. It's surprising how little things will make the same animation feel different. The blue sword adds +1 targets and reduces the amount of screen freeze on-hit, so it feels much faster and sharper. The orange sword is just fire damage + visual effect. Some weapons will have different sprites.


You only have one weapon type (sword) so the abilities are my focus in designing combat. But the weapons will serve as ways to approach combat differently. Based on the passive abilities, moves will gain use in situations they didn't have before, and vice versa. Some weapons will provide special abilities/traits unavailable without using them.    



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