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Lo-Fi
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« Reply #60 on: October 14, 2014, 12:30:10 PM »

Devlog update #18: 10-14-14

We're working on the IGF build, so that means I've been focusing on polish rather than working on the 2-player split screen. I was hoping to get the newer abilities into the IGF build (gravity flipping, camera rotation, etc), but I think the levels featuring those abilities still need a lot of polish. So, I'm going to cut those from the IGF build (though I will have them in the alpha build, as long as they still show promise).

It seems like the IGF build will be a pretty short, polished experience  Smiley

David (UI guy on the team) has been working on some stuff to polish the presentation up a bit.


New logo for the title screen


New font for the intro credits


A new animation for death. Now, the screen flickers with some vcr-style static when the player dies. It looks better in motion, but I don't have any gif recording software on the computer I'm posting from. Anyways, this has to do with the story, which we are making some progress on!
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« Reply #61 on: October 14, 2014, 12:42:37 PM »

Have you seen GIFCAM? It's super easy to use for a fast GIF without much hassle
http://blog.bahraniapps.com/gifcam/
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« Reply #62 on: October 14, 2014, 01:02:36 PM »

Yeah, I have, I just didn't have time to download it and record a gif  Shrug
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« Reply #63 on: October 28, 2014, 03:49:27 PM »

Devlog update #19: 10-28-14

Hey guys! First thing, an announcement: Four Sided Fantasy is going to be at Double Fine's Day of the Devs on November 1. If you're in the area, check it out. There are a ton of cool games and it's free!



We also recently submitted to IGF, and I'm pretty happy with that build. It's real short, but real polished, too.

Also, it's been a while since a Kickstarter update. If you're a backer, don't worry, there's a new update coming very soon! And if you backed at the exclusive builds tier, you'll be receiving the IGF/Day of the Devs build soon!
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« Reply #64 on: November 02, 2014, 12:22:37 AM »

Saw this at Day of the Devs -- it's looking good!  Nice intro puzzles Smiley
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« Reply #65 on: November 13, 2014, 09:36:42 PM »

Devlog update #20: 11-13-14

I've been working on finding a way to give players more choice in which puzzles they want to solve in which order. I am anticipating that some players will get stumped - to keep them playing, I'd like to give them some options, so they can go solve a different puzzle and come back to the hard one later. I have probably mentioned this before, but I don't feel that hub levels are a good fit for the game, so I'm trying to figure out other ways to do it.

I recently tried a level switching mechanic - at certain points, you can switch between level "tracks" at the push of a button. I haven't playtested it much, but in the little bit I did, it was hard for players to visualize, and it was jarring, since they were switching between two different ability tracks.

A different implementation that I am getting ready to playtest is, instead of giving players the ability to switch between levels, I am making some levels more open. Instead of doing 3 puzzles of progressing difficulty with the same verb in a strict order, for example, some levels are now 3 or so puzzles, but with each focusing on a different verb at around the same difficulty.

This requires keys and gates, and I wasn't satisfied with the literal keys/doors I was using, so I added a new collectible/gate system.

First, are the collectibles. These don't show up in all levels, they just show up in the levels that are more open. These collectibles also satisfy something I was looking for - a way to reward players for solving puzzles. I feel that the puzzles should be intrinsically rewarding, but it's nice to have some other type of rewards every now and then for a change of pace.


The gate (ignore the draw order issue). When entered, it disables the screen wrap ability. If you enter it while having the screen locked in place, it unlocks the screen. The 2 indicates how many collectibles are needed to disable the gate.


The collectible. Once collected, a trail of particles follows near the player, with a new trail for each collectible that you pick up.


Once you get the amount of collectibles required, when you enter the gate, it is destroyed, allowing you to progress.

I haven't playtested this system yet, but at the very least, it's a nice change of pace from the super-linear levels of puzzle after puzzle.

Also, I made a new transition. This one's a little crazy  Smiley

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« Reply #66 on: November 20, 2014, 01:17:14 PM »

Devlog update #21: 11-20-14

I'm working on 2 player split screen. Since I haven't touched it since the Kickstarter, it's in a completely different state than the rest of the game, so it's a long process of hunting down bugs and fixing them. But in the meantime, here's a look at something neat - our new split screen line is represented by a crack in the screen.

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« Reply #67 on: November 20, 2014, 06:05:45 PM »

Wow. I was going to ask if it was inspired by The Fourth Wall.

Then I saw you made that too.

 Who, Me?

Looks amazing, especially the splitscreen, resizing, and rotating, because I've never seen that type of thing done before. I can't wait to see what you do with it. I'll probably preorder.  Hand Money Left Addicted Hand Money Right

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« Reply #68 on: November 21, 2014, 07:16:26 PM »

Wow. I was going to ask if it was inspired by The Fourth Wall.

Then I saw you made that too.

 Who, Me?

Looks amazing, especially the splitscreen, resizing, and rotating, because I've never seen that type of thing done before. I can't wait to see what you do with it. I'll probably preorder.  Hand Money Left Addicted Hand Money Right



Woah, cool, thanks for the kind words, man!

In development news, I just finished up most of the basics of 2 player split screen. Now to move onto the more complicated situations...
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« Reply #69 on: November 22, 2014, 04:00:07 PM »

Devlog update #22: 11-22-14

Taking a bit of a break from 2 player split screen so that I can prototype a structure that I have dismissed throughout development: A level hub. Now, when I've thought about a level hub before, I typically thought about Braid-style enter-through-doors-to-choose-a-level hubs. Which works for that game, but I don't think it would fit for this game.

But recently, I realized a different way to approach it. Once the player completes the series of "normal wrap" levels, it will open up to 4 different worlds - one for each ability (gravity flipping, foreground/background, camera rotation, single player split screen). In this hub, they can choose which world they want to go to first. Once they start a world, they can choose to go back out to the hub level at any time, saving their position in that world, and then choosing a different world if they so choose.

This allows for some flexibility in which puzzle to pursue, in case the player gets stuck, while also clearly distinguishing which levels have which abilities. Here's a screen of the hub level in it's current form - each donut shape is a world.



Not sure how it plays yet, but I'm going to at least try it out. Also, I've got to figure out how it effects the story.
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« Reply #70 on: November 23, 2014, 08:00:07 AM »

Not sure that screen is selling your world hub well. But it sounds interesting in concept.
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« Reply #71 on: December 01, 2014, 07:43:28 PM »

Devlog update #23: 12-01-14

I've been working more on 2 player split screen. What a task!

At first, I had decided to simplify things by making it so that either player pressing the screen wrap button would turn on the screen wrap for both cameras and lock both cameras in place. I was doing this to avoid solving the more difficult design/technical decisions, but I wasn't ready to admit that to myself.  Smiley

A designer friend convinced me that I should have the 2 camera lock buttons separate. So now, the screen wrap turns on for both cameras no matter who presses the screen wrap button, but it only locks the camera in place for the player(s) who press(es) it. It sounds like a small distinction, but it's a lot more interesting. I was already getting stumped on coming up with puzzles the old way, but after testing this new idea, I've got a ton of ideas.

Let's look at how the separate camera movements effects things:


You can force the other player to be screen wrapped, which is fun.


Another example.


But what happens if you force the other player to wrap into something solid? The camera is automatically locked, since the player doesn't have anywhere to wrap to. It will only unlock once the player returns to the middle half of the screen. In this image, there isn't any player locking/unlocking the camera, it's all automated for this situation. This is the part that I was avoiding, but it was actually way easier to design/implement than I was expecting. Lesson learned.  Smiley


Another fun thing.

I think 2 player split screen is about ready for playtesting! Now I just need to design some levels for playtesters to play.

A little recap of what I had to account for just to get this mode working:
Player 1:
-left, right, up, down wrap for camera 1
-left, right, up, down wrap for camera 2
-left, right, up, down wrap into solid for cam 1
-left, right, up, down wrap into solid for cam 2
-being forced to wrap by moving cam 2 left, right, up, down
-unlocking camera if the player is forced to wrap into a solid and then the other player moves back to the other half of the screen. Need to account for all 4 sides
-swapping places with player 2, so that camera 1 follows player 2 and camera 2 follows player 1
-Fortunately normal wrap code seems to work for when a player is in both cameras at the same time

And then the same thing for player 2.
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« Reply #72 on: January 06, 2015, 04:29:38 PM »

Devlog update #24: 01-06-15

We've hit alpha! Instead of re-posting everything here this time, here's a link to the latest Kickstarter update:
https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/lofi/four-sided-fantasy-a-game-about-the-limits-of-the/posts/1099378

I've got a new hub world mostly working, so I'll be posting about that soon!
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« Reply #73 on: January 11, 2015, 05:02:31 PM »

Devlog update #25: 01-11-15

We had a backer suggest that we start posting about how we are doing things from a technical angle, so I'm going to start doing that, with something simple.

It's something that was in The Fourth Wall, which I also just implemented into FSF. That is, faking screen wrap so that, when standing at the edge of the screen, you can see the other half of the character on the other side of the screen.

Here's what it looks like in-game:

(Cut off a bit from cropping)

And here's how we're doing it.


As you can see, the main character is in the center, with a copy of the sprite parented in each direction. The left and right ones are a screen's width away, and the top and bottom ones are a screen's height away. I have it disabled for split screen and foreground/background levels, but it can be tweaked to work for those levels as well.
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« Reply #74 on: January 19, 2015, 06:36:02 PM »

Devlog update #26: 01-19-15

So, I stumbled upon something while developing a completely unrelated prototype. Not sure if I want to do anything with it in FSF, (especially since it changes the scope of the game quite a bit), but here it is.





That's right, screen wrap in a first person game. A FPS (First Person Screenwrapper)! I think it's pretty neat! Not sure if I want to do anything with it yet, but I thought I would show it here.

I've also been working on a new version of the hub. I think it fits the game a lot better and is more cohesive than the torus hub.


Choosing between worlds in the hub (hey, I just realized this gif is seamless!)


Going into a level from the hub. Still not seamless yet, I need to figure out how to do screenshots or render textures between scenes in Unity. Anyone got any ideas?


Going out of a level back into the hub
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« Reply #75 on: January 30, 2015, 08:06:07 PM »

Devlog update #27: 01-30-15

Just a quick one today. Been messing with visuals and wanted to show a couple things real quick.


Trying to get more creative with backgrounds


The required silhouette level Smiley

Did some playtesting the other day, and got some good feedback. One player played through the whole thing, and enjoyed most of it, which I was happy to see!

I'm not going to pursue that weird first person thing that I posted about last time, and I may cut 2 player split screen, since the 1 player split screen section covers most of what I want to do with split screen.
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« Reply #76 on: February 14, 2015, 08:12:36 AM »

Devlog update #27: 01-30-15

Did some playtesting the other day, and got some good feedback. One player played through the whole thing, and enjoyed most of it, which I was happy to see!
I'm not going to pursue that weird first person thing that I posted about last time, and I may cut 2 player split screen, since the 1 player split screen section covers most of what I want to do with split screen.

Good idea. The first person concept could probably be used in an entirely different future game. And at most make the 2-player split screen future DLC or something (depending on reception of the game). Which makes me wanna ask: are you seeking a Steam release of FSF?
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« Reply #77 on: March 11, 2015, 03:38:52 PM »

^Yeah, we were fortunate enough to get greenlit on Steam when we did the Kickstarter.

Devlog update #28: 03-11-15

PAX East!

So, we're working with Curve Digital to bring the game to consoles! PS4, PS3, Vita, Xbox One, and Wii U. Along with this comes the announcement that we're now aiming for January 2016 for launch. I know, delays suck, but I know it will make the game that much better. As part of this, they brought me to PAX East to show the game at their booth. It was a great experience!

I've now shown at a small booth of my own at PAX Prime, and a larger booth with Curve at PAX East. I'd say the larger booth was a better overall experience. For one, there is always someone there to watch the booth, which is nice. The other benefit is that they were showing seven games total, which seems to have attracted more people than just one game would. They were showing OlliOlli, The Swindle, Stealth Inc 2, Nova-111, Ultratron, Porcunipine, and Four Sided Fantasy. It was a wide range of games, so we got people playing FSF that wouldn't normally have gravitated towards the game on it's own.


Setting up






Boston!




There was a lot of snow in Boston



Overall, people had a pretty good time playing the game! There is a level that most people got stuck on fairly early on that I need to address. Pretty sure that it's just that I'm trying to teach too many things in one level, so I need to space those concepts out more. Also, based on what I saw at the show, I'm going to move the hub world earlier in the game and treat the pre-hub section almost as an intro. I've got around 10 pages of notes, so I have plenty of things I know I need to change  Smiley
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« Reply #78 on: April 10, 2015, 07:25:20 PM »

Devlog update #29: 04-10-15

Hey there guys! Long time no see. I know it's been a while since I posted, but I'm gonna keep this one short. I'm going to try to post a devlog nearly every day I work on the game from now on, even if I don't make much progress.

Anyways, I know I'm leaving a lot of progress out of this post, I'll save that for another day.

I've been working on getting the Fall setting assets up and running. They've been un-optimized and poorly implemented on my part, so I spent some time cleaning them up.

Let's take a look at it!


The basic fall ground tile.


Top, corner, and side pieces. These are chosen in the inspector, with a script I wrote, seen below


(Even though the option is there, the Fall tile doesn't have a bottom piece since there will never be a Fall tile above the player unless he is underground. UG = underground.)


I finally got around to making it so that the top, side, and corner pieces scale and position correctly, no matter what the size of the tile is, as you can see here. The already-implemented summer tile does this already, but the math and spacing for this one was different for multiple reasons.


For the Fall setting, we also have an underground tile, which you can see here. This isn't necessary for the summer, since we can justify rock outrcoppings, but here we need the underground tile for any area that needs a roof. Floating hills/grass patches just don't make sense. Next step is to figure out a transition between the ground tiles, which you can see is needed on the right side of the image.

These assets aren't completely finished, but I think they're at a point where I can start using them in levels and start getting feedback on them.
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« Reply #79 on: April 14, 2015, 03:43:39 PM »

Devlog update #30: 04-14-15

Today I've been working on making the game fully playable for the PAX megabooth submission this week (Edit: oops! Looks like the submission opens this week, closes May 8th.). It's mostly cleaning up the look of levels and transitions, so I don't have much to show from today, but I will show something I worked on the other day.

I'm going to try out "intro levels" for each world, to introduce the concept of the world's ability in a unique way, without requiring a puzzle to be solved. Sort of a "here's what you're going to see in this world". I've had one for the split screen for a while, but I just built the levels for the other two worlds, gravity flipping and foreground/background.


Foreground/background. The level continues like this, with several objects used for foreground wipes.


Gravity flipping (watch the reflection). The level continues like this for a bit.

I haven't playtested these yet, but I'm looking forward to seeing what players think!
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