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Nerve Damage Games
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« on: November 28, 2017, 05:42:06 AM »

Devlog #1

The Game
In Service of Country is a 2D action platformer primarily focused on local multiplayer, though we want to add online multiplayer as well. We have planned three game modes for the game
  • Capture the flag.
  • Gunplay
  • Capture the flag with GunPlay

All three modes will have different game types for example a game type could be last-man standing, first to ten or time attack.

In capture the flag 2-4 players fight for the briefcase [the flag], when a player collect the briefcase, they need to deliver it at one of the extraction points.

 

In Gunplay 2-4 players fight with guns that is spawned around the level. Players will not be spawned with a gun, but can pick them up. Each guns have different fire stats and cannot be reloaded. If ammo run out, pick up a new gun. In this mode, the game will add twin-stick control, since the players aim with the right analog stick.


The Game-play
Run, jump, dash, shoot [only gunplay and combined game mode], collect/deliver briefcase [only ctf and combined game mode] and collect power-ups to beat your competition.

Features

  • Began work on leveleditor.
  • Added four levels made by MoPed Games.
  • Added four characters made by MoPed Games.
  • Added particle effects for run, jump, wall jump, dash and briefcase.
  • Added animation to extraction points.
  • Added sound effects.
  • Added wall jumping.
    • Redesigned it to get it more balanced.
  • Added Capture the flag and gun modes.
  • Added Time, Sudden Death and Points game types.
  • Added horizontal and vertical moving platforms.
  • Began work on online multiplayer.
    • Again not gonna promise anything.
  • Added Dash ability.
  • And a bunch of other stuff.
  • Added placeholder explosions on bullet collisions.
  • Added camera shake on bullet collision.


Other news
In other news we had a team member attend Sweden Game Conference back in October, thanks to GameHub Denmark. SGC is a totally awesome place to go, if you are a smaller indie company looking for feedback on a game in development.

We got a lot of feedback, and tweaked a lot of smaller things  and did a redesign of the wall jumping system to make it feel better and give the players better control.

On a finishing note you can expect new a update biweekly - next scheduled update is Friday December 8th.

Original published on our website: https://nervedamagegames.com/blog/category/devlogs/
Follow on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/nervedamagegames/
Follow on Twitter: https://twitter.com/PlayNDG

Nerve Damage Games

Jonas Pedersen
Co-Owner, Community &
Marketing Manager
« Last Edit: December 17, 2017, 11:58:39 PM by Nerve Damage Games » Logged

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« Reply #1 on: December 08, 2017, 06:24:36 AM »

Devlog #2

Guns and deathmatch





In the last post I mentioned implementing gunplay game mode. We decided to rename gunplay to Deathmatch.

In the past weeks we have generally worked a lot on the deathmatch mode.
We implemented a gfx gun pack from this unity asset https://www.assetstore.unity3d.com/en/#!/content/43899, to help our non-artistic programmers needs.





Besides implementing the gfx, we made a simple system to give the guns the most basic behaviour, such as:
  • Ammo capacity
  • Spread value
  • Fire rate
  • Projectile speed

In relation to implementing guns, we made a simple aim. When holding a gun,
navigate using the right analog stick to aim the weapon between top and bottom in the way the character is facing.
 


Since we now have two game modes and two different ways of playing them, point or time, we need to make a selection menu of sorts. We looked a inspiration from super smash brothers and our programmer came up with this, which you might have seen if you follow us on facebook or twitter.
Use the left stick [on controller] to navigate and the "A" button to toggle any of the settings.
If both capture the flag and deathmatch is on you will play combined or as we call it normal mode.
In this mode you won't get points for shooting, but only delivering the intel. However if you have the flag, and get shot you will lose it.

 



Other News
We are working on making a demo build including one level, a couple of guns and the three game modes. We are expecting it to be ready Friday December 15th - a week from now. Hope you guys are gonna give it a try and tell us what you think. More info will follow when the demo is live.


Original published on our website:  https://nervedamagegames.com/blog/in-service-of-country-devlog-2/
Follow on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/nervedamagegames/
Follow on Twitter: https://twitter.com/PlayNDG


Best regards,
Nerve Damage Games

Jonas Pedersen
Co-Owner, Community &
Marketing Manager
« Last Edit: December 08, 2017, 06:46:24 AM by JoPed » Logged

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« Reply #2 on: December 15, 2017, 12:24:49 PM »

Demo build available




Hi everyone,
great news. We spend the last week making our game ready for a demo, because we would really love your feedback. If you read the devlog (of cause you have), you might know a little about the game already. If you haven't, fear not, you can read the Devlog #1 and #2 posts.

Just to recap, this is a 2d platformer, action multiplayer game, where you compete against friends or family.
For now you will have to play locally or against our AI in capture the flag and while you can play with keyboard, we strongly recommend that you play it with controllers. The online feature unfortunately is not ready for this demo, but will be included at a later date.


The demo includes one map and three game modes, (1) capture the flag, (2) deathmatch and (3) combined.  There will be several guns available, with an option to select which of these guns you want. We added an experimental Linux build, which you are free to use but don’t expect anything. However it worked fine on a virtual machine operating Linux.

Try beating the AI   Cheesy




Download
By clicking the link you will be redirected to Gamejolt.com or Itch.io depending on the link you click. From there you can download version 0.1.1 for either Linux or Windows.  When downloaded, please make sure to unpack the zip folder (windows build) or tar.gz (linux build) and read the readme.txt file before playing.

Edit: The demo is now only available on GameJolt and Itch.
« Last Edit: January 16, 2018, 01:12:49 AM by Nerve Damage Games » Logged

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« Reply #3 on: December 19, 2017, 05:22:06 AM »

We updated the demo, due to some bugs and stuff we wanted to change. The download links has been updated. Read the patch notes to check out all the changes.  Wink
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« Reply #4 on: December 20, 2017, 03:45:48 AM »

Devlog #3





Hi everyone,
Last week we uploaded a demo in hopes someone would play it and give some feedback. If you haven’t done it yet, we would very much like if you try it out and fill out the feedback survey. If you tried the first demo, and hadn’t noticed, we uploaded a new version of the demo yesterday. It includes some changes and some fixes, all of which you can read in the patchnotes.txt file included in the .zip and .tar.gzip folders.

Unless game breaking bugs are reported, I'm not sure we will update the demo again in the near future. For those who played and filled out the feedback survey, thank you very much. This is much appreciated!

NB: You can still find the demo on GameJolt and Itch.

Artificial intelligence
One of the things, that have been worked on in the last couple of weeks is the AI. It is not nearly done, but works fine especially in Capture the flag. The AI is developed with fuzzy logic concept, which in short is a way of imitating human decision making.

Right now the player can select AI either in the selection menu, or in the game menu, like this:


 


Controller support
It was always the plan to have controller support, both because our primary focus is consoles, but also because we knew that keyboard controls would not give us as many options for great gameplay.

The first time around we just used Unity’s (Unity Engine) input manager, which is fine for smaller things but doesn’t really work with bigger things. We wanted to buy a tool to help us, and we actually ended up deciding in favor of InControl, however we discovered a new updated (now discontinued) github version which we use for the time being. We wanted to know how good it really was. As I remember the first thing our lead programmer said about it, was “damn this is sexy”.

If you need controller support, and use Unity you should seriously consider InControl.


Other news
This is the devlog, that would have been out Friday December 22nd, but due to the holidays we decided today was a better option. We expect to be able to give another update, Friday January 5th 2018, however keep in mind that this would only give us one week worth of updates and not two like normally.

Original post: https://nervedamagegames.com/blog/in-service-of-country-devlog-3/

We at Nerve Damage Games wish you all the best christmas and a great new year.
Happy holidays!
« Last Edit: January 16, 2018, 01:13:09 AM by Nerve Damage Games » Logged

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« Reply #5 on: January 03, 2018, 04:43:04 AM »

AI Gameplay video
Unfortunately we decided to cancel this weeks devlog, due to a lack of content.
Furthermore we are going to Norway skiing next week, which means we will have another one week sprint,
and therefore I cannot promise a devlog on January 19th.

However we do have a new video ready for you. See the AI battle each other in capture the flag.
I will say that there is still a long way to go with the AI before it is ready, but this is a first peak into what they can do.



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« Reply #6 on: January 19, 2018, 04:11:40 AM »

Devlog #4

User interface
If you follow our social media, namely twitter, you might have seen the two teasers of our brand new UI, earlier this week. This new overhaul is due to the fact that we just got two game focused multimedia designers for a three month internship.
Among other things, they have been tasked with overhauling the entire UI, HUD, drawing game logos and redesigning the company logo. Anyway back to what’s fun, the UI.


Fig. 1 - Navigating the Main Menu


Fig. 2 - Setting up weapons and game rules


Fig. 3 - Selecting a map for the match


Fig. 4 - Selection a character and joining the game


Fig. 5 - The pause menu

Game Logo
Up till this date we still don’t got a proper logo, actually we didn’t really got any logo at all. And of cause we need that, so one of the interns began drawing some concepts and different ideas. First picture shows his different ideas, and the second shows the one we think is best. What do you guys think?

Cast your vote on Facebook or Twitter.



Fig. 6 - The logo ideas



Fig. 7 - The one we think is best


Original post: https://nervedamagegames.com/blog/in-service-of-country-devlog-4/
« Last Edit: February 02, 2018, 06:32:29 AM by Nerve Damage Games » Logged

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« Reply #7 on: February 02, 2018, 06:31:31 AM »

Devlog #5

Game intro
One of the things we focused on this sprint, was giving players a better understanding of the game rules.
We did this by implementing a static info image telling players how to play the chosen game mode.


Fig. 1 - Intro text for capture the flag.



Fig. 2 - Intro text for deathmatch.

Game header
We are currently working on figuring out what our game logo should be,but as you read in the last devlog, we do have some different ideas.
We just didn’t have time to pursue this yet. But it will come, as soon as possible.


Fig. 3 - Header for the game.

Company logo
This might not be game related, but nevertheless an important thing as the old logo had a couple of issues.
The new logo is less detailed meaning it can be less fragile. Also we have gotten a new super awesome header, to go with the new logo.




Fig. 4 - New company logo.



Fig. 5 - New company header.

Other news
In the last few months we have had a hard time making the company work, because most of us has work on the side, but with varying amounts of time to put in the company.  What we want is to make awesome games and to do that we need resources. Therefore we have decided to focus more on work-for-hire jobs as this will hopefully help get us get to a point where we can make awesome games. The increased focus on work-for-hire will mean that the amount of time we can use on our own projects will be decreased and therefore we have decided to change the time scale of the devlog from once every two weeks, to once every month - more specifically the last friday of a month. This is to be sure that, there is actually some features/improvements to talk about. Next devlog will be February 23th.

Original post: https://nervedamagegames.com/blog/in-service-of-country-devlog-5/
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« Reply #8 on: February 02, 2018, 05:56:37 PM »

I like the bright and colorful interface.  The art style has progressed nicely - and kudos on getting the AI to work.

One suggestion: I loved how chaotic and over-the-top the first GIF was, but the gameplay and demo videos were pretty tame by comparison.  I feel like this game's art style is best suited for huge explosions and ridiculous, unrealistic action. IMO, you should kick it up to 11 and make sure to showcase that in gameplay videos.

Also, if you could work in a simple camera effect that zooms in when players get close together, I think it would add intensity to the matches.

Overall though, I really like it.  It's charming and looks fun.  Keep it up.  Grin Hand Thumbs Up Right
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« Reply #9 on: February 23, 2018, 12:52:09 AM »

First of all, sorry it has taken so long to get back to you.

Second of all thank you for all the feedback. You are totally right about the videos, I also love the first couple of gifs where everything explodes. We are going to seriously try and make the game feature more unrealistic and over-the-top action.

In regards to the camera effect, it was the first thing we tried when we started out, but we really could not get it working properly. I don't think we will try again, but can't rule it out either.

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« Reply #10 on: February 23, 2018, 01:50:09 AM »

Devlog #6 - Redesigning character selection
User testing
A couple of weeks ago we had some users, test our game. The goal of this test was to see the reaction of users who had never played the game before. For the best results, we only provided the most essential information.

A majority of the testers said, to some extend, the same thing. “The gameplay is totally awesome and fun. But the menu navigation is totally not.”

And we could see what they meant. Especially navigation in the character selection menu was complicated and not very intuitive. The opposite of what it is supposed to be.

Navigation in the Character selection
The design of the character selection menu actually didn’t change much, from the tests. We are really satisfied with the design, but what we did was to change the way users cycle characters, ready/unready and go to the map selection. We added ‘X’ button icon below the ready button. And we added D-pad and left stick icon instead of the arrow above and below the characters. This will all be explained in a bit.

"Character selection screen"
Fig. 1 - Character Selection.


Before you had to select upper or lower arrow and then press ‘A’ (on Xbox controller) to cycle characters. Furthermore you had to select the ready button and press ‘A’ to ready up. The problem being that the highlighted color had priority over the green color so it was, nearly impossible to see if you had joined or not.

Now you cycle character by pressing up/down on the D-pad or left stick on a controller removing the ‘A’ button press. Furthermore we changed the ready part of the menu, so players ready up/leave by pressing ‘X’, removing the part where they had to select the ready button first.

Note: We wrote a button fetcher script that checks if the controller is Xbox or Playstation and then displays the proper image. For now it doesn’t show anything if the there are no controllers connected.


New weapons
Another thing we got feedback on are the weapons, and more specifically the fact the weapons are too different from the character. The users really loved the design of the characters, but also thought that the weapons have same chubby style as the characters. I can’t show any in-game footage with the new weapons, since only a few has been done, and they are still being optimized so we can put them in the game. Below is the newly design M4, with a bit more rounded edges than the previous M4.

"The M4 with more rounded edges"
Fig. 2 - Newly designed M4 rifle.


A great new idea
One of our programmers got a new idea, involving the guns. The summed up version that we make 5-10 prefixes, both buffs and debuffs, and every spawned weapon has a chance to get one of these prefixes to spice up the game, and make it more replayable. A prefix could be exploding bullets, enlarged guns or inverted fire rate (slow guns fire fast and fast gun fire slow).

New game logo and header
In the last devlog, I showed you an image telling you that this was supposed to be the the game header. We changed it up making the header image to the game logo, and then making a new header.

"New logo showing four characters shooting at each other"
Fig. 3 - New logo for In Service of Country.



"New game header including gamename"
Fig. 4 - New header for In Service of Country.



We would love to hear what you think about the weapon prefix idea and game logo, in the comments below.

Original post:  https://nervedamagegames.com/blog/devlog-6-redesigning-character-selection
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« Reply #11 on: February 28, 2018, 02:29:47 PM »

It looks really fun an promising! As andy said, the chaotic aspect of the first gif is definitely something to keep.

This makes me think about a very good GDC talk: Juice it or Lose it. I think you guys already know what you are doing but even then, it can be a useful talk in case you haven't seen it yet. Smiley
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« Reply #12 on: March 03, 2018, 02:47:53 PM »

@Jerome - thank you for the kind words and for mentioning the GDC talk, we will definitely look at it.

In regards to the chaotic aspect, we are hoping that the weapons prefixes (or modifiers) both buffs and nerfs will add that to the game-play. This idea is still in the early stage, but some of the things we talked about are wormhole mines, delayed explosion bullets, seeker bullets and short paralysis caused by shooting the gun.

It will properly be something like each weapon has a chance to get a modifier and then a chance to get either a buff or nerf.
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« Reply #13 on: March 04, 2018, 09:02:20 AM »

The wormholes and delayed explosions sound great. Both would bring some unpredictability and randomness.

The paralysis may have the opposite effect of slowing down the action though and/or frustrating the player. Not sure it would have a detrimental effect, just thinking out loud.

Looking forward to it!
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« Reply #14 on: March 04, 2018, 12:47:18 PM »

Thanks for thinking out loud, that is a valid point. We will see what happens  Smiley
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« Reply #15 on: March 27, 2018, 12:09:15 AM »

Hi,
I have been working on a new game-play trailer, and wanted to get some non-biased opinions about it. Please do be honest. Hope it doesn't suck to much  Wink




Btw. this months devlog will be up a little early. Stay tuned.  
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« Reply #16 on: March 28, 2018, 02:24:11 AM »

Devlog #7 - Level Concepts

Level Concepts
One of the things we worked on in this month was designing new awesome level concepts. We had our designer come up with a number of different concepts and from there we boiled it down to the four best. Right now we are working on implementing and play-testing these four level concepts.

Our designer took inspiration from existing levels where one level is very much symmetric and others have more diversity. This is visible in the form that level 4 is very symmetric where level 8 is absolutely not. Level 3 was designed based on the thought that the tower in the middle could provide some intense firefight and chases for the intel or extraction points. Another level was designed based upon the idea to take away some of the freedom from the player and limit what the player can do.

These are the four concepts, we are implementing:


Fig. 1 - Concept Level 3 aka. The Tower.


Fig. 2 - Concept Level 4.


Fig. 3 - Concept Level 8 aka. The Maze.


Fig. 4 - Concept Level 9

Trigger issues
Actually the newest gameplay video should have been recorded and released a couple of weeks ago at the start of the month. However, when we sat down and began recording we found this weird bug, where players could shoot for each other and as a result we couldn’t record the needed gameplay. Player1 was shooting for Player1 and Player3 at the same time, meanwhile Player3 couldn’t shoot. We used a lot of time and energy trying to understand and fix the problem. Initially we thought the problem was on our end mixing up statements in the code.

However, after support from the studio behind InControl, we found out it was a known bug in the Unity engine. And so we fixed the bug by enabling native input in the InControl settings, meaning we bypass Unity’s input.

If anyone out there wants to implement controller support, I can highly recommend bypassing Unity’s system and use InControl or another asset out there.

As a side note, for anyone interested it seems like Unity are redesigning the whole input system.

Slow collision
Just last week we found out we had a problem with projectiles moving too quickly for a collision to occur, especially rpg projectiles, causing rpg projectiles to hit players through platforms.

In order to solve this problem we added ray-casting to the collision detection logic. With ray-casting we can draw a line ahead of the projectile, and check if there should be a collision. Since ray-casting is rather fast in Unity, it will hit any object in its path before the actual projectile.

Gameplay trailer
As you saw yesterday, I posted the newest video to get some feedback. So please watch the video and give some constructive criticism. I would be much appreciated.

Original post: https://nervedamagegames.com/blog/devlog-7-level-concepts/
« Last Edit: March 28, 2018, 02:35:09 AM by Nerve Damage Games » Logged

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