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TIGSource ForumsCommunityDevLogsSongbringer: a procedural action RPG
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GiffE
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« Reply #40 on: March 08, 2015, 05:54:32 AM »

Cool. Glad we all agree on the title choice. I like #1 too.  Tongue

@james: Good suggestion. There is already a new animation going on that I'm pretty happy with. Will post later on.

In the meantime, here's a look at a little scene meant to visualize the procedural generation of the world. The game takes a mega seed entered by the player and procedurally generates the overworld and dungeons, tile by tile (true random generation, not just an arranging of rooms). This little visualization takes the mega seed and uses it to generate and animate these squares. This only happens once when the player creates a new save game slot.


This got my attention, I'm a such fan of procedural worlds and always looking to learn new techniques.
Mind sharing your method?  Is it something similar to meta-zelda or Lenna's Inception?
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Juwdah
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« Reply #41 on: March 08, 2015, 06:34:40 AM »

The procedurally generation visualisation looks really nice and brings something extra to the game, really like this!
Also, good job on the logo, looks way cleaner and better now! (voting on n1 as well), when re-reading my last comment I did sound a bit rude, sorry about that and not giving any more info! Tongue
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autumnspark
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« Reply #42 on: March 08, 2015, 01:09:16 PM »

Permadeath!?   Well, hello there!
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wizardfu
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« Reply #43 on: March 08, 2015, 01:36:02 PM »

@Juwdah: thanks! And no worries about the comment. Glad you like n1 as well. So far everyone does! It's been changed in the game.

@autumnspark: yep. Permadeath is an option. Playing in permadeath mode when you die you cannot continue, but the rewards are greater. I'm planning for the game to have an online / global leaderboard which scores every run of the game based on time to complete, secrets uncovered, etc. Permadeath mode will make that score increase quite a bit.

@GiffE: funny you mention metazelda! I was just reading up about Bytten's algorithms last night. So far, my algorithm is just a simple maze generator, but now that I'm about to implement locks, keys and switches, metazelda is a huge help! I will be re-reading the articles and skimming the java code but writing my own c++.
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wizardfu
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« Reply #44 on: March 08, 2015, 05:17:36 PM »

This week of development began with some excitement to get a little title scene created. That got done and so much more! Here's a list of stuff accomplished:

  • Save games can now be created, selected and erased
  • Keyboard keys and gamepad buttons can be rebound
  • A mega seed can be entered for each new game, creating an entirely unique overworld and dungeons
  • Two game modes can be selected: regular and permadeath
  • Artwork began for several new items: oranges, key cards, the proton helmet, hover boots, power gloves, fire orb, ice orb, plasma orb and psychedelic cacti
  • Inventory screen started - items can be selected
  • Mini map is now drawn on the hud


Here's a link to the timelapse video for week 12 of development:



« Last Edit: March 13, 2015, 01:18:42 PM by wizardfu » Logged

wizardfu
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« Reply #45 on: March 11, 2015, 12:31:35 PM »

Loving these new giant black eyeball enemies. Smiley They shoot plasma beams that explode and they can also clam up in a defensive position that takes many hits to open back up. Writing these AI required the creation of a projectile & explosion system as well as a shield system. Feels good to have that done.

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wizardfu
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« Reply #46 on: March 13, 2015, 01:51:24 PM »

I'd like to get your thoughts on co-op play in action / adventure / RPG games. I'm considering adding this female playable character to the game and enabling sort of an optional co-op mode.


Here's what I'd like some feedback on:

1. Always co-op or single player with optional co-op?

Are there always two heroes on screen or can a second player be optionally added any time? If there are always two players on screen then if there is no second human player, an AI will have to take over sometimes for the second hero. In that case, maybe it's possible to switch the active hero. If it's possible for just one hero to be on screen, then can a button be pressed to add a second player at any time, or must the game be saved / quit to menu and then start again with the second player?

2. Share health or separate health?

Are there two separate health bars for the heroes, or do they share a common health bar? I think it could be fun to share a health bar. Maybe your defense doubles when two players are active. When your shared health bar gets to zero, you both die. This could force players to co-operate more and might make for some interesting play. Looking forward to some thoughts here.

3. Player 2 has no items / inventory, a few simple player-2-specific items, or a full set of unique items like player 1?

It's already so much art work just for the first hero. There's already 389 sprite frames (see image below)! This is primarily due to having separate animations for the sword being on your back or out and ready, times with a hat or without a hat. Being a solo developer, if I do add a second player co-op mode, I'd prefer to keep the second hero a little more simplistic in the art department, maybe she fights only with her hands or shoots lasers from her eyes, something to keep the frames pretty low. That said, it doesn't mean she cannot have items that make her better or more unique (like poison fists or something). So, the question is, as a player, what would you prefer: player 2 to have no items / inventory, a few simple items, or a full host of unique zelda-esque items like the first hero?

4. Heroes can damage each other?

This one could lead to some real interesting play with a friend. If you can damage each other it can make things very fun or perhaps you totally just piss each other off! Think River City Ransom. The other side to this coin is that maybe you can heal each other too kind of like high-fiving in Toejam and Earl. Or maybe the second hero has an ability / item which heals...

Really, really looking forward to some thoughts on these matters!

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bounds
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« Reply #47 on: March 13, 2015, 01:55:04 PM »

Looking real good! I'm really impressed with your 'dynamic shadows' (as in I want to steal them!), the new enemies look solid, now all it needs is a light sab... laser sword :D
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« Reply #48 on: March 13, 2015, 02:05:06 PM »

1) Personally I like being able to play solo and not having to worry about an AI partner. So drop-in co-op over always co-op
2) I think individual health bars would be best.
3) Binding of Issac had an interesting co-op approach but player 2 having access to everything would be more fun
4) Friendlly fire would be cool, but I'd rather have the option to set that rather than it always be the case
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« Reply #49 on: March 13, 2015, 02:45:23 PM »

1. Always co-op or single player with optional co-op?  If it's possible for just one hero to be on screen, then can a button be pressed to add a second player at any time, or must the game be saved / quit to menu and then start again with the second player?

Maybe a solution halfway between these, in which there are particular places you can summon the second player, but they're frequent enough that your friend doesn't have to wait ten minutes for you to find one. (Like she's a goddess, or a warrior from the distant past or far future; someone who might reasonably step out of a portal of some sort.)  Among other things, it's a way to control where and under what circumstances a player joins, so that they don't suddenly spawn in an impossible place or exploitable situation.

Quote
2. Share health or separate health? Are there two separate health bars for the heroes, or do they share a common health bar? I think it could be fun to share a health bar. Maybe your defense doubles when two players are active. When your shared health bar gets to zero, you both die. This could force players to co-operate more and might make for some interesting play. Looking forward to some thoughts here.

One reason I think this isn't often done is that second players (at least in local multiplayer co-op) are often going to be the less skilled ones.  If P1 is risking their own HP by the inclusion of P2, that might create a disincentive to invite a P2 in the first place.  (Or a social disincentive for P2 to join, if they feel their lack of skill will jeopardize P1's game.)

Answering this and the rest of the questions together: it might be neat if the second player were invulnerable (such that damage only stuns her and the only lose condition is P1 dying) but also cannot directly deal damage (because otherwise she'd be too powerful).  Say, her primary attack is an energy vector that momentarily freezes anything it passes through, or deals various status effects depending on a limited inventory unique to her.  This gives her some unique gameplay (avoid getting stunned while finding the vector and effect that has the most benefit to P1) and encourages cooperation (if P1 and P2 aren't on the same page it's of no benefit to either).  And players can potentially harm each other (maybe P2 gets stunned momentarily by friendly fire too, while if P1 is in the path of her beam for more than a second he's momentarily frozen) but it's mechanically limited and indirect harm.

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Dr. LudoS
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« Reply #50 on: March 13, 2015, 04:43:14 PM »

Interesting project!

I love your art style, it reminds me of SuperBrothers EP in a way!

Regarding Co-op, I too prefer not to have an AI partner, but would find outstanding to have an human player be able to join at any time. Personally, I like separate health bars, with the eventual ability to "share health" by pressing a button Smiley
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wizardfu
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« Reply #51 on: March 13, 2015, 05:42:38 PM »

Very interesting thoughts so far... Thanks you guys!
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wizardfu
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« Reply #52 on: March 14, 2015, 12:57:13 AM »

Here's the timelapse video of this week's live streams:





BTW, are these helpful to post, or...?
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« Reply #53 on: March 16, 2015, 12:30:08 PM »

Hey - glad you settled on title no 1, although I think they all looked better tbh Smiley

Just wanted to pop my head back in and say how cool the floating lack eyes look! More of that kind of thing please!

Re the co-op I'd say:

1 - Drop in co-op is probably the most versatile and what I like in games in general (Guacamelee got a lot of play with the co-op when one of us got stuck on a bit)
2 - Shared health would be an interesting mechanic if the game was designed to play around with it, but on its own I think it might be a bit strange, my vote would be for separate health bars
3 - Don't really know about this. If it were me, I'd maybe try copying the player's stuff to player 2 when they drop in so they get another copy or let them use the same stuff. Can see that being a problem though, could probably be exploited.
4 - I like the healing each other idea! Hurting each other was pretty fun in Castle Crashers (although mainly for griefing my wife)

Also, I like the timelapse! Seeing the animation and art is probably the most interesting to me.

Keep up the good work!
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« Reply #54 on: March 16, 2015, 12:52:38 PM »

Hey Wizard, in regards to the piss off factor we talked about on the livestream, if you have a shared health bar between the players that loses the potential of accidentally (but often intentionally) harming the other player. So you would have to find another way round this if you wanted to implement shared health.

For ideas, consider how Spelunky allows you to mess with other players. The beginning of this play through video is a good reference:

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wizardfu
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« Reply #55 on: March 16, 2015, 03:14:55 PM »

@triplevision: Thanks for your suggestions on co-op. It's so good to get many opinions! Glad also that the timelapses are a help and now that most of the engine is in place it will be more and more art... And I love the black eyeball guys too. Can't wait to make some alternate versions of them and more enemies similar.

@longshorts: Ahh. Nice video suggestion. I like how the dead players can remain as ghosts. Does the game focus the camera only on player 1? I like how the other players could get lost off screen.
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wizardfu
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« Reply #56 on: March 19, 2015, 11:29:48 AM »

Can't wait to see some reactions to these hidden item chests...

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Pixel Noise
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« Reply #57 on: March 20, 2015, 11:51:07 AM »

I'd like to get your thoughts on co-op play in action / adventure / RPG games. I'm considering adding this female playable character to the game and enabling sort of an optional co-op mode.


Here's what I'd like some feedback on:

1. Always co-op or single player with optional co-op?

Are there always two heroes on screen or can a second player be optionally added any time? If there are always two players on screen then if there is no second human player, an AI will have to take over sometimes for the second hero. In that case, maybe it's possible to switch the active hero. If it's possible for just one hero to be on screen, then can a button be pressed to add a second player at any time, or must the game be saved / quit to menu and then start again with the second player?

2. Share health or separate health?

Are there two separate health bars for the heroes, or do they share a common health bar? I think it could be fun to share a health bar. Maybe your defense doubles when two players are active. When your shared health bar gets to zero, you both die. This could force players to co-operate more and might make for some interesting play. Looking forward to some thoughts here.

3. Player 2 has no items / inventory, a few simple player-2-specific items, or a full set of unique items like player 1?

It's already so much art work just for the first hero. There's already 389 sprite frames (see image below)! This is primarily due to having separate animations for the sword being on your back or out and ready, times with a hat or without a hat. Being a solo developer, if I do add a second player co-op mode, I'd prefer to keep the second hero a little more simplistic in the art department, maybe she fights only with her hands or shoots lasers from her eyes, something to keep the frames pretty low. That said, it doesn't mean she cannot have items that make her better or more unique (like poison fists or something). So, the question is, as a player, what would you prefer: player 2 to have no items / inventory, a few simple items, or a full host of unique zelda-esque items like the first hero?

4. Heroes can damage each other?

This one could lead to some real interesting play with a friend. If you can damage each other it can make things very fun or perhaps you totally just piss each other off! Think River City Ransom. The other side to this coin is that maybe you can heal each other too kind of like high-fiving in Toejam and Earl. Or maybe the second hero has an ability / item which heals...

Really, really looking forward to some thoughts on these matters!



1) If possible, I'd vote for real-time add/dropping of extra player/s. Particularly since you are planning for leaderboards, scoring, etc, some people will only want to play in single player. There could also be separate scoreboards for single vs. co-op runs?

2) The shared health bar is a great idea in concept, but if you have a sucky player 2, it's going to ruin the experience for player 1.

3) Actually, I really like the idea you have of making the 2nd player more of a "utility" player. Give them a few unique skills, so they're useful, but not necessary.

4) Friendly fire depends on what sort of attacks/abilities you plan on using. If the action/combat is too fast-paced, friendly fire will turn out to just be a drag.


Loving this so far, keep it up!
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wizardfu
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« Reply #58 on: March 20, 2015, 10:34:35 PM »

Cheers, Pixel Noise! Good to have so many opinions. Here's one of the latest screens. Working on secret walls.

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Christian
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« Reply #59 on: March 27, 2015, 09:26:24 AM »

Looking good! Is the KS still planned for March, or will it be pushed back to April?
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