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December 10, 2018, 08:28:59 AM

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TIGSource ForumsCommunityDevLogsBomber Barn
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larrylateleaf
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« on: June 13, 2018, 10:26:25 AM »


Hello! My name is Larry, and this kicks off the devlog for an upcoming game called Bomber Barn, developed by me and my brother Terry under the name Late Leaf Games.

We're taking the classic Bomberman and giving it a twist! In Bomber Barn, cuddly farm animals bomb each other and try to get an edge using special abilities. Our vision is to build a versatile local multiplayer experience that ties in both endless battling as well as an engaging story mode. PC/Mac is the initial target platform.




Gameplay Description

Battle mode will contain various game types, old and new (deathmatch, floor coloring/territory, knockout, timed survival, etc.) across multiple levels, carefully designed around the various characters' play styles. Our approach is a minimalist one that aims to strip out of most of the bloat from past games (we'll have only 3 power-ups) while satisfying both competitive and casual players.

Story mode will consist of challenging boss fights, creative puzzles, and strategic gameplay, rather than world exploration.

Download - Preview Build

The latest playable public alpha (PC, Mac) of the Battle mode is now available on our website! It comes with bots, so you can play even if you don't have anyone around in person to battle with. All feedback is welcome Wink

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This thread will typically have the most "shop talk", but please also subscribe on YouTube and sign up for email updates using the footer on our website.
« Last Edit: October 28, 2018, 06:15:55 PM by larrylateleaf » Logged

v790
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« Reply #1 on: June 14, 2018, 12:49:00 AM »

lol nice!
Really interested in this game. Good luck!
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Jesse Ko
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« Reply #2 on: June 15, 2018, 05:10:49 AM »

I loved the old Bomberman games, though they've released quite a few over the years. What Bomberman would you say Bomber Barn is most similar to?
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terrylateleaf
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« Reply #3 on: June 15, 2018, 05:23:59 AM »

Hey, Terry here. I'm the other brother at Late Leaf Games.

lol nice!
Really interested in this game. Good luck!

I'm glad you're interested, definitely stay tuned! We have lots of exciting things planned for Bomber Barn  Grin
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v790
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« Reply #4 on: June 15, 2018, 05:59:48 AM »

Hey, Terry here. I'm the other brother at Late Leaf Games.

lol nice!
Really interested in this game. Good luck!

I'm glad you're interested, definitely stay tuned! We have lots of exciting things planned for Bomber Barn  Grin

Got it!
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larrylateleaf
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« Reply #5 on: June 15, 2018, 06:48:54 AM »

I loved the old Bomberman games, though they've released quite a few over the years. What Bomberman would you say Bomber Barn is most similar to?

Although I didn't play much of it personally growing up, I'd say it's closest to Bomberman Generations (GameCube), because it's 3D, has responsive 4-direction movement for the battle modes, and comes with a story mode featuring boss fights and puzzles.

That said, hopefully it incorporates all the best elements from the old games while leaving behind the worst Wink
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larrylateleaf
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« Reply #6 on: June 20, 2018, 06:15:45 AM »

Bomber Barn v0.1.1 build 3

The basic Battle mode is now available to test drive!


Download Sign-Up Page

We now have a downloadable build for you to play a few matches with at least one other friend (local multiplayer only) and give us your feedback. Right now you need at least 2 players/controllers to start a game. Playing against the computer (and a practice mode) is coming soon!

Note that most art assets (the environment, particle effects, etc.) are temporary. We're primarily focusing on the core gameplay right now Smiley

Controls - Gamepad:
A (bottom button): Drop Bomb / Confirm (menu)
B (right button): Use Active Ability / Cancel (menu)

Passive abilities are "always on" (think perks), while Active abilities are used at will. Actives have varying cooldown periods, so time them wisely.

Characters
1. Chuckin' Chicken
Passive Ability: "Cook" bombs by holding down the Drop Bomb button. These will have a shorter fuse!
Active Ability: Throw up to three bombs ahead of you, as long as nothing is blocking the way.

2. Quick Cat
Passive Ability: Start off moving faster than everybody else.
Active Ability: Start sprinting extra fast for a few seconds, limited to dropping only one bomb.

3. Dojo Donkey
Passive Ability: Kick nearby bombs away by moving into them.
Active Ability: Spin around quickly, kicking away all immediately adjacent bobms.

4. Timid Turtle
Passive Ability: You cannot be harmed by your own bombs.
Active Ability: Withdraw into your shell for a few seconds, temporarily immune to any flames.

v0.1.1 build 3 screenshots

Here's a GIF showcasing the Turtle's "Withdraw" ability, used to counter a near-certain death at the hands of Chuckin' Chicken's sneaky toss:



A few more screenshots:









Download Sign-Up Page
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larrylateleaf
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« Reply #7 on: July 05, 2018, 12:20:26 PM »

Some recent updates from the past few weeks, focused on the visuals, among other things:

Moving away from gray blocks...




Playing with some texture, and actual player portraits (you are no longer just "P2")...



We've also added small improvements here and there like the Items doing a little dance instead of statically sitting there, and bombers flying up into the sky when they're eliminated!

Next up: further experimenting with the lighting to make these levels pop a bit more. That last screenshot is bit dim/strange because we just shifted over to Linear color space.
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larrylateleaf
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« Reply #8 on: July 17, 2018, 10:27:22 AM »

Some more visual polish! The gameplay lighting is now (in my opinion) greatly enhanced, and we have a new look for the flames.

Oh yeah, and when you get bombed, you shoot up into the sky Shocked



And for first-timers, the match setup screen gives you a lot more info now, including the Bomber abilities, and map previews:





We still have to fine-tune the typography and spacing a bit, but the functionality is there.

Next up, we have some minor cleaning up to do with the analog stick directional input, which tended to get a little wonky in menus. Our immediate priority is now on in-person testing in the New York City area to get more feedback before building out extra content.
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« Reply #9 on: July 17, 2018, 12:18:28 PM »

Oh man, as a HUGE Bomberman fan (to this day we have Saturn Bomberman get-togethers at my place), this looks really cool.  Very cool visual style you've got going on and I'm very glad that even though your game is 3D, it's still 100% top-down with the camera.

The powers seem neat, but will there be an option to play without them so everyone starts out on the same footing?
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larrylateleaf
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« Reply #10 on: July 17, 2018, 01:20:01 PM »

Oh man, as a HUGE Bomberman fan (to this day we have Saturn Bomberman get-togethers at my place), this looks really cool.  Very cool visual style you've got going on and I'm very glad that even though your game is 3D, it's still 100% top-down with the camera.

The powers seem neat, but will there be an option to play without them so everyone starts out on the same footing?

Thanks!! Yeah, one thing we did intentionally is keep the movement exclusively 4-direction. In some screenshots you might see a bomber facing diagonally, but that's strictly a visual touch when you happen to be pressing a diagonal. (I suppose we might have some open areas for 360-degree movement, but those would only be in the Story Mode.)

Yes, definitely -- there will be an option to turn on/off both the Passive abilities and Active abilities, so you can always play "vanilla" Smiley
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« Reply #11 on: July 18, 2018, 06:45:44 AM »

The mechanics of the game are fantastic, I always liked the "bomberman", nostalgia come to me  Big Laff Wink
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larrylateleaf
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« Reply #12 on: July 31, 2018, 03:49:50 PM »

Did some more playtesting in the past week or so, and it seems there's a consensus on a few things. These are the handful of changes we're eyeing so far:

Feedback: The flames remain dangerous for too long, leading to things like barely grazing a fading flame and still dying.
Response: Slightly decrease the character hitbox size, and also make the flame "safe" a little bit earlier (relative to the visuals).

Feedback: Quick Cat seems underpowered; the Active almost never gets to be used to its intended potential.
Response: Try increasing the base move speed further, and consider adding some sort of "dash" ability instead of (or in addition to) the existing Sniping Sprint.

Feedback: The late-game phase is funner when it's more fast-paced.
Response: Experiment with the RNG such that items spawn more frequently, and in a more even distribution (sometimes you just get unlucky and see no Speed items). Also, consider having a player's items get scattered across the map when they get bombed, just like in the original.

Playing around with these "solutions" is a lot of fun, but we'll continue slowly adding in enhancements at the same time so that we don't slow down too much on "actual" progress. For example, we need to add some lighting to the flames, iterate on the exploding debris, re-work the "Round Over" screen, etc.



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larrylateleaf
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« Reply #13 on: August 05, 2018, 06:02:36 PM »

Tweaked the Round Over behavior so that it's not longer its own scene (with a fade out and fade in surrounding it).

Instead, when a round is over, the battlefield just blurs out, and the scoreboard pops up (also with some typography improvements over the previous scoreboard). This way, moving from round to round is much faster and smoother.

Oh yeah, any changes in score also "pop in" with a neat animation. Here's a still of it:



In other news, we'll be aiming to playtest at the NYU Game Center this month, so if you're in NYC by chance, let us know!
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larrylateleaf
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« Reply #14 on: August 16, 2018, 07:13:52 PM »

Made a few updates this week:

  • End-of-round process is no longer broken by time running out (this was a huge bug, but I guess time just never ran out during playtests)
  • The flames have been tweaked slightly to be a touch "safer"
  • The item spawning system has been changed to decrease long streaks of only one item (e.g. getting 3+ Bombs in a row by random chance)
  • The overall chance of an item appearing underneath a soft block has been slightly increased

Also, finally updated to Unity 2018.2 (from 2017.3) so a few bumps had to be smoothed out!
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larrylateleaf
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« Reply #15 on: September 02, 2018, 10:30:58 AM »

The NYU Playtest on 8/23 was awesome! Although it was a bit quieter than usual (according to some people I talked to there) because the fall semester hadn't started yet, I think it was a great first experiencing having strangers play and comment on the game. Also got my hands on some local indie games, both old and new. Definitely need a lot more of this in the future.

That said, some recent progress on Bomber Barn listed below. Most of these are general UX/QoL things that we felt were necessary to have earlier rather than later.

September 7 is our scheduled deadline for another playable build which will also have (very simple) AI bots so you can all test out the gameplay at home!

  • Tweaked the item spawning system yet again to be more "robust" (some inverse probability weighting thing now)
  • Added a UI panel on all non-gameplay scenes that briefly indicates the currently connected controllers*
  • Added a quick flash on the cooldown meter when your Active is ready to use
  • When someone wins a match, that character's sound effect plays (meow!)
  • Blurred the background properly when the round ends, and when the game is paused
  • Fixed bug where players could spam the pause button
  • Fixed bug where Dojo Donkey could attempt to kick diagonally

* See screenshot here, on the bottom left. It fades out after a few seconds of no new controller connect/disconnect events.



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larrylateleaf
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« Reply #16 on: September 08, 2018, 12:21:26 PM »

It's alive! The animals have become self-aware!

No, not really, but there are the bots that I promised. I'm not sure how to embed a 30 second video on here, but here's a link of Quick Cat in action, completely acting on its own: https://twitter.com/lateleafgames/status/1038519810341183494

Finally on time for #screenshotsaturday for once Smiley

There are a few things to finish testing, including uncommon cases like Controller 1 and Controller 4 joining the game, and adding 2 bots, and making sure everything runs smoothly from beginning to end. For the most part I think this is ready, though.

Oh, and coding the UI for adding bots was a bit of a nightmare. Here's how it looks:



I guess we're approaching beta territory, as far as Battle mode goes. Then, we can release another build while bulking up the Battle mode a bit more ("dynamic" maps, scoring by kills, maybe a "knockout" mode, etc.).

Also a top priority is recording some footage and compiling some graphics/logos to apply for a booth at Gameacon, coming up at the end of October in Atlantic City, NJ.
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larrylateleaf
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« Reply #17 on: September 15, 2018, 06:47:15 PM »

We are officially confirmed for Gameacon in Atlantic City from October 20-21! Super excited but also a bit nervous, to be honest Who, Me?

Obviously we have to work out some event-related logistics and stuff, but we'll continue to add in more fun content and start really filling in the Battle mode at the same time. Speaking of which, here's a short (under 1 minute) video overview we made, quickly demonstrating the 4 animals and their abilities:




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larrylateleaf
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« Reply #18 on: September 29, 2018, 02:29:14 PM »

Whew, I spent more time than I wanted to adding a controller definition for this obscure wired PS3 controller that we'll be using at our live demos.

In addition, a small visuals update. This afternoon I started blocking in some ideas using a recently released free model pack from Quaternius (who actually did our character models, and hopefully more soon).

Map: "Duel" (before)



Map: "Duel" (after)




Map: "Core" (before)



Map: "Core" (after)



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larrylateleaf
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« Reply #19 on: October 04, 2018, 01:18:06 PM »

Check out some more WIP images from the four maps we have now. Been playing with lights, lighting, and the building colors.

"Duel"



"Core"



"Serpent"



"Elbows"
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