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Rayvolution
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« on: July 31, 2014, 09:47:42 AM »


5-Month Mark Technical Demo!






Retro-Pixel Castles is at heart a village simulator. But it's really much more than that. Where most village simulators focus mostly on balancing your village, RPC also throws in a heavy blend of raw survival and tactical gameplay. If you could imagine a roguelike village sim, that's what this game is all about! In RPC you will lose. Endless survival is impossible, the goal is to see how long you will survive. RPC takes it's inspiration from other village management games like Dwarf Fortress and mixes them together with elements of survival games like Don't Starve with a sprinkling of some RTS elements seen in games like Command and Conquer and even some classic Tower Defense concepts to help you bottleneck and handle the onslaught of monsters trying to kill off your poor little villagers.





You can't win!
Yeah, that's right. Not being able to win is a feature! The problem with nearly all village sims is you tend to reach an inevitable point where you can't lose the game. You just become so skilled at knowing exactly what to do, and in exactly what order, the game loses all of it's appeal and you run off to play something else. That's not the case with Retro-Pixel Castles! RPC aims to make a game you can't win. Every game day, the game gets progressively harder with no end in sight. The goal of the game isn't to win, but to survive as long as humanly possible.



Build a village, and die trying!
A major part of the game is village management, and trying to discover new and creative ways to keep yourself alive as long as possible. In RPC, you will plan many days in advance how you're going to build your village and survive the inevitable onslaught of the monsters that will attack you!

Unlock Content Through Gameplay
In RPC, you will find yourself in a harsh and unforgiving environment, constantly trying to find new ways to keep your little villagers alive for just a few more days. As you play, you'll unlock more content, like additional buildings, items and units you can use in your next attempt to see if you can survive even longer than the last!

Even though you can't beat this game, you most certainly can make progress in it! Every round you play you'll gain experience, unlocks, and other interesting goodies that will expand the game.
Massive maps!

Massive maps!
Each map is a massive 512x512 tiles in size, and a typical play through you may find yourself only playing in a small area, usually about 128x128 in size. Each time you play, you start at a different location on the map, and each location has it's own challenges! So each of these massive maps are like having multiple maps all in one!
Tons of map set themes!

Tons of map set themes!
Every set of maps will follow a certain theme (Forest, Desert, Underground, etc). Most of the current screenshots only feature ONE of these map sets, the Forest! But many, many more are planned.






FULL-FEATURED Built in Map Editor!
Built right into the game engine itself is a very robust, feature filled map editor. The same one used to make the official content for the game! You'll be able to make maps using the same tools I did and share them with your friends, or even share them over on the Steam Workshop if we can all band-together and get RPC Greenlit!



Orchestration-Retro Hybrid Soundtrack!
A full, original and custom soundtrack, made by Bibiki Garcia that blends orchestral instruments and old 8 and 16 bit retro era music together in a beautiful blend that fits Retro-Pixel Castles perfectly!





SixtyGig Games is a DRM free independent game developer! Retro-Pixel Castles will not now or ever in the future have any sort of DRM! Piracy protection only hurts you guys, the loyal paying players. So you rest assured knowing that once you buy yourself a copy of Retro-Pixel Castles you'll never again have to concern yourself with nagging questions about if you can continue playing the game down the road due to something like always-online logins, lost registration codes or because you bought a new computer and you're only licensed to put the game on one. All I ask from you is to be reasonable and responsible, you can buy the game and play it as much as you like, wherever you like. Just tell your friends to support my DRM-Free philosophy and buy their own copy! Smiley Free Content Patches, no paid-DLC

I don't believe in paying for Downloaded Content. If you buy Retro-Pixel Castles you will have access to the entire game and all the content I'll ever create for this game, forever! I believe DLC is greedy, and you deserve to have the full gaming experience from day 1, right out of the (figurative) box!




Your feedback is extremely important. You can reply here or head on over to RPC's official website, Steam, or you can visit the various other forums I maintain a thread on and post your suggestions! I'm always looking for feedback. Just pick your flavor below! Smiley
- Official Site -
- IndieDB -
- Twitter -
- Tumblr -
- Java-Gaming.org -





3-Month Mark Technical Demo!
See it on IndieDB, or on



CLICK TO SEE FULL SIZED IMAGES ON INDIEDB
(More can be found at http://retropixelcastles.com or on IndieDB)

   

   

   

   
« Last Edit: November 05, 2014, 02:25:36 AM by Rayvolution » Logged

- Raymond "Rayvolution" Doerr.
Retro-Pixel Castles - Survival Sim/Builder/Roguelike!
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« Reply #1 on: August 02, 2014, 06:54:09 AM »

A lot has been added over the past few days, mostly I've been working on the villagers themselves, developing their AI to be much more intelligent and adding leveling up and statistics. Now villagers know to look for food when they're hungry, go home and sleep when they're tired, and when there's no work to be done at their assigned building they just head home.

Nearly everything your villagers do will gain experience, including gathering material, managing the city, killing monsters, building structures and reproducing. As they gain experience and level up they automatically distribute 5 points into strength, dexterity and intelligence. As they level up and gain STR/DEX/INT it has a trickle-down effect adjusting all their other statistics, including; gathering speed, building speed, waking/running speed, attack damage, hit points, and energy decay rates for example. So higher level villagers usually live longer and are much more productive overall.

Another large part of the villager's statistics system is some future plans for villager traits in the the upcoming trait system. Villager will have a random chance of being born with up to 5 random traits, these traits can have minor to drastic effects on the villager's AI or his statistics growth. Just a few of the traits planned are:
- Strong/Quick/Intelligent: A villager with one of these traits will get a chance at additional stat points in their inclination area. For example, a villager that is "Naturally Strong" will have a 50% chance every level up to gain an additional strength point.
- Weak/Clumsy/Dumb: Same as above, but instead you have a chance of not gaining a point where you normally would have.
- Fast/Slow: A small walking speed bonus/penalty.
- Hyper: AI clock ticks faster, resulting in them bouncing around more often and not holding still. They may get more done when they're awake, but their energy levels drop faster.
- Homosexual: Doesn't reproduce, but is generally happier.
- Lazy: Doesn't want to work as often, and attempts to sleep or eat more frequently.
- Rabbit: Breeds more often.
- Scared: Runs from monsters more often.
- Fearless: Attacks monsters, regardless if they have drastically higher statistics than the villager instead of running.

Also planned, when your villagers reproduce, the offspring will gain a 20% bonus to their stats, based on their parents based stats. Meaning higher level parents will produce higher level offspring. They will also have a 25% change (per trait) to inherit one of their parent's traits. So it's in your benefit to keep your villagers alive as long as possible, if your constantly losing your villagers, you'll have a much harder time keeping everyone at high levels.
 
A little shot of the current WIP "statistics pane".
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« Reply #2 on: August 02, 2014, 07:31:22 AM »

Oh boy, this looks super fun, like a game I've wanted to play my whole life without even knowing!
What's the tech behind this - some custom engine?
Also, are you on Twitter yet? If not, create an account now!
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« Reply #3 on: August 02, 2014, 09:42:36 AM »

Oh boy, this looks super fun, like a game I've wanted to play my whole life without even knowing!
What's the tech behind this - some custom engine?
Also, are you on Twitter yet? If not, create an account now!

Thanks! It's written in Java (due to wanting to be natively multiplatform). It uses the LWJGL and Slick2d libraries. But the engine itself is my own creation.

I do have a twitter, I was planning on starting that up soon. But right now it's a bit dead, although you (and others) could start following in advance if you really wanted to.
https://twitter.com/RaymondDoerr

I've been having a blast working on it, looking forward to pushing it to Kickstarter and Greenlight once the gameplay is stable enough I can call it a "game". There's so much village simulation work that needs written, it's a slow process getting it to a playable state. Wink
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« Reply #4 on: August 02, 2014, 12:05:28 PM »

Alright, I went ahead and did the dirty-deed. RPC is now on twitter! Wink

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« Reply #5 on: August 02, 2014, 12:08:02 PM »

Did you misspell mayhem because there's some kind of ham related goings on here? Also, what would you need Kickstarter money for exactly?
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Rayvolution
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« Reply #6 on: August 02, 2014, 12:24:59 PM »

Did you misspell mayhem because there's some kind of ham related goings on here?

Nope, misspelled it because I'm an idiot and forgot to proofread my subject line before I posted. Wink

Also, what would you need Kickstarter money for exactly?

The KickStarter funds are for multiple reasons, mainly to pay for equipment to properly develop the game on other platforms and to pay my music guy for his hard work someday in the future. A percentage of it also will go to promotional items for the KickStarter itself, like t-shirts, stickers, etc. (if I go that route).

Most of the backer rewards will also come with a free copy (or copies) of the game, including some recognition in the game itself, like having a villager named after you or allowing you to submit your own map into the final game. So in a way, it'll also function as a pre-ordering system for people who want to support the game early.

But honestly I really don't have all the details yet, I'm not even sure what the funding level will even be on the KickStarter. I'm working hard on priority one, getting the game to a playable state right now. Smiley
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« Reply #7 on: August 02, 2014, 12:49:08 PM »

Cool then. Seems like we're about in the same place dev wise. The reason I asked about KS was I was thinking of doing one, but I don't know a whole lot about it yet. So, thanks.
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« Reply #8 on: August 02, 2014, 01:07:55 PM »

Cool then. Seems like we're about in the same place dev wise. The reason I asked about KS was I was thinking of doing one, but I don't know a whole lot about it yet. So, thanks.

Yeah, I've been doing a lot of research tracking what other small time indie games are doing, what works, what doesn't. Seems the best option (from what I've seen at least) is to offer a free copy of the game to any backers who gives you what you plan to sell it for anyway. Then, give them as many digital rewards as you can think of that don't have a detrimental effect on the final project's quality.

I think one of the biggest things is to keep it reasonable as well, don't go asking for 50k, when you only need 5k. Wink
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« Reply #9 on: August 05, 2014, 05:55:03 PM »

The last few days have been well spent working on the new farming and hunger mechanics. As with everything in RPC, farming had a ton of AI work that needed to be done, as well as some behaviors for hunger and starvation!

   In this update, I've added:
- Hunger, they now go home when they need to eat. If they have no home, they scavenge for scraps around or outside of town! Be careful, if you don't get your farms going before your villagers start to starve they may eat all the nearby food, dooming you in the long run!
- New farm building added, can now plant nearby crops and make them a renewable resource to keep your village running strong.
- The farmers will distribute food to all the homes nearby, and tend to the crops automatically. No player intervention required once you have a functional farm going!
- Happiness now is directly affected by hunger, now your villagers happiness will drop when they're hungry, so keep them fed!
- Villagers who's hunger hits zero will slowly starve to death.

   Future farming plans:
- Many various farm building sizes, some small and quick to build, some large and resource intensive to build.
- Food storage building (Like the lumber storage, just for food of course.)
- More plant types! Currently we only have carrots, but that will change eventually.
- Animals/meats, these will be added someday after the core mechanics are all in place. Probably sometime during alpha.
- Farming flowers, for use in future decorative builds.


   Quiet Village Farming


   A little bit of overkill late night farming.


   Some carrots all by themselves.


   A few early development shots from a few days ago.


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« Reply #10 on: August 05, 2014, 06:42:19 PM »

Wow I absolutely love the look of this
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« Reply #11 on: August 06, 2014, 04:06:01 AM »

Wow I absolutely love the look of this

Thanks! Smiley
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« Reply #12 on: August 06, 2014, 05:22:54 AM »

Followed the twitter, this looks like it has potential. Is it dwarf fortress inspired btw?
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« Reply #13 on: August 06, 2014, 08:20:40 AM »

Followed the twitter, this looks like it has potential. Is it dwarf fortress inspired btw?

Believe it or not, I've never played Dwarf Fortress before! But it's inspired by the the genre, along with elements from classic RTS, roguelike and a little Tower Defense type games.

Although it shouldn't be confused with any of the genres, it takes elements from all of them but really couldn't be directly labeled for any of them. But if I had to say what it's closest to, the village survival sims like Dwarf Fortress, Towns and Banished may be the best approximation. :D
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« Reply #14 on: August 08, 2014, 01:12:17 PM »

Yeah, this definitely gives me Dwarf Fortress vibes! Great game, man! I'm definitely following this thread. Smiley
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« Reply #15 on: August 10, 2014, 08:52:19 AM »

I've been mostly working on the GUI in the play mode over the past few days, really polishing it up and adding in all the missing buttons. The great thing about GUI work is it really makes the game shine, although the drawback is the inordinate amount of time it takes to code/draw! But, it's all worth it in the end.

Another feature I've finally added is villager names, there are now over 4,000 first names, and 10,000 last names for the game to pick from when a villager is generated. That's over 40 million combinations! Some of them with hilarious outcomes.

Next up will probably be building mechanics, so our little villagers can actually build objects. We're getting closer and closer to actually calling RPC a "game" every day!



A new villager drop-down pane. You can now see all of your villagers in a simple, easy to view list.


The new bottom Pop Out information pane, that displays statistics for villagers or objects you click on:


..and the whole thing, all together, and also featuring some of the other small changes:


« Last Edit: August 10, 2014, 09:09:46 AM by Rayvolution » Logged

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« Reply #16 on: August 14, 2014, 08:10:11 AM »

I've changed gears a bit and decided it was time to overhaul the shadow engine. The game is reaching a point I can start adding several new buildings, terrains, topography and resources, so I decided before I started in on that I should get my new shadow engine concept working since it involves hand drawing shadows for everything in the game. It just makes sense to do it before I have dozens of building and sub-building types in the game. Smiley

So, here it is! The new shadows. The new hard shadows really give the buildings, walls and terrain a bit more pop. It's a lot easier to see the depth ques (Very important for a true top down game!) and personally, I think it gives the game a nice clean and crisp look to it. Enjoy!
 

   
In-Game shot, featuring the walls and some of the buildings at various stages while the Lumberjacks and Farmers do their work.

   
Inside the map editor, a small mock up of some walls, rocks and trees.

   
A tiny village at the edge of the map.


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« Reply #17 on: August 16, 2014, 08:05:01 AM »

After the feedback from some of the RPC fans around the web about how they were disappointed that the new hard shadows were no longer dynamic, I decided to rearrange my coding priorities and put dynamic hard shadows on the top of the list!

..so, by popular demand, I bring you; dynamic soft shadows!

Thanks for the input! I'm really happy with the results. Smiley

Go shadows go!
 

   
Shadow angles at various times of day.
 
   

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« Reply #18 on: August 21, 2014, 10:02:55 AM »

I try to keep you guys posted every few days about the work in RPC, usually giving you a nice news bit at every landmark. But this landmark is a biggie, so you're getting a mid-landmark update of what I have been working on!

Over the past few days I've been working on the building mechanics and making the AI smarter. I've added quite a lot since the shadow update, mostly on the content side of the house trying to flesh out building mechanics to get this glorified map editor turned into a game. Here's a bullet breakdown! (because who doesn't like bullet breakdowns?)

- The Village Center
The Village Center is now operational, in the future you will only be able to build one. A close approximation to the village center's function is like the "Construction Yards" in classic RTS games like Command and Conquer. When you first start a new game, you'll have somewhere around a dozen villagers, and no buildings. Then you will find somewhere on the map to place your Village Center and your little guys will start putting it together. Once built, you'll be able to start building other things in-range of your center. The villagers working at the village center will automatically start building objects on the map you drop down, so make sure you always have some workers at your village center or nothing will get built! Smiley

- Global range.
Now, all the buildings contribute to your maximum building/harvesting range. Your village center is the only building allowed to be placed anywhere on the map (to get you started). But, after that you have to build within the constraints of your build range. But, every time you place a building, that range grows. In the future you'll also be able to build cheap "range extender" buildings, like Guard Towers and your global range will "level up" as your population grows.

- Abandoned Buildings.
I've added abandoned buildings that can be placed in the map editor, these buildings are pre-placed on maps and the player has the option to rebuild these for a fraction of the original build costs and start using them. The current plan is every single building in the game will have a "abandoned" counterpart. So map makers could make little "abandoned villages" other players could use on their map.

- Smarter AI.
I've done a lot of tweaks to the AI over the past few days. One example is I had originally I had planned that the gathering workers at the Stone Masonry, Lumber Mill, and other gathering or storage buildings would deliver their resources to the Village Center itself and then the builders would fetch the resources from the Village Center and take it to build sites to start working. But instead, the Village Center now no longer carries any resources what so ever, and the gatherers just take goods directly to new building locations automatically, making the process a lot more fluid and natural! You can see some of this action in the screenshots below, where the villagers in red (Lumberjacks/Stone Masons) are taking materials to the build sites being worked on by the villagers in brown/green (Builders).
   
Screenshots of various building and AI mechanics, featuring many of the new buildings. Smiley


   
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« Reply #19 on: August 30, 2014, 09:53:04 AM »

I've been mostly working on breeding and polish the past few days, while breeding isn't quite ready to show off it it's entirety (Still no children yet!) one of the new polishing elements is! I've added informational floater icons/text to the villagers, buildings, and anywhere else that seemed appropriate. I feel it brings a large amount of life to the game and helps keep the player better informed as to what is going on.

Currently, these icons pop up during various game events. For example, when two people partner up and "go home together" *wink wink*, when they deliver, remove or gather resources, any time XP is gained or they level up, any time their stats change and so on and so forth.

Since there isn't too terribly much to explain about this new feature, I decided to just GIF bomb you instead! So enjoy! Smiley

(From left to right)
1. Villagers going home to get busy. Wink
2. Villagers building a small house.
3. Villagers collecting stone.


   
Villagers returning logs to their Lumber Mill

   
Villagers delivering goods to work sites for the builders to use.

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Retro-Pixel Castles - Survival Sim/Builder/Roguelike!
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