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TIGSource ForumsCommunityDevLogsThis is the End (steampunk squad-based strategy, xcom-like, with rats!)
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Author Topic: This is the End (steampunk squad-based strategy, xcom-like, with rats!)  (Read 10103 times)
bryku
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« on: June 14, 2018, 06:38:51 AM »

The battle is lost. Capitol has been overrun by the Rat Swarm. It is your job to lead a group of survivors out of the city.

===

"This is the End" combines the squad-based strategy features of XCOM with survival elements; it is based in a steampunk setting.

I am aiming on creating a vertical slice of the game, which is focused on a tactical mission placed in Capitol's industrial district . There's still a lot of stuff to do, but I am slowly making progress. Stay tuned to this thread to receive most up-to-date info about the development.

Here are some up-to-date gifs:










Legacy information (a.k.a. the original first post):


Hello! My name is Slawomir, and this is the very first entry of the developer blog on a game that I am working on.

Elevator pitch

XCom game with giant plague rats, full of "I am so overpowered!" and "Shit, I'm f*cked!" moments.

Origin, and progress so far

So it all started on the 1-Room RPG Jam in 2017. It is then when I decided to gather all of the code assets that I have created for all the unfinished games and try to finally finish something. And that's how 1 Room Demon Slayer was born.

I abandoned the project after the jam, and approached it again during the 7DRL Challenge 2018. And as I was (well, still am) a big XCom games fan, I've decided to try and transfer some of its features to the 2D, tile-based world. So I've created the Twin Demon Slayers game, which I have then refined after the jam, to match the XCom vibe even more.

So I've added more XCom-ish cover display, with characters hiding behind cover:


Then, I've added action and targeting system (again, XCom-inspired):


As the work went on, I decided to set up the vibe for the game: a steampunk dystopian setting (plague, rats, etc.). So I started to work with a pixel artist (Kurt Prieto - go check out his work), and it resulted in some nice stuff!

Here are initial concepts of a rogue/ranger character:


Here's the game, using the new models (currently only one model is available, so both player characters and enemies are using the same model). You can see the cover display, potential targets and potential cover/flank systems in action:


What's next?

The game is a hobby project, but I am pretty consistent about the development. Expect monthly updates on this devblog.

The short-term plan is to create a vertical slice of the combat gameplay mechanic, to see how the XCom mechanics would work in 2D environment.

Long-term plan involves having two gameplay levels: combat and base management. It's a long way ahead of me, and I believe that it will be fun!

Take care!

(And yes, I know that there are no rats on the screenshots above. You should see one on the next update though!)
« Last Edit: June 20, 2019, 12:10:02 PM by bryku » Logged

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« Reply #1 on: June 14, 2018, 07:08:17 AM »

Looks great!
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Mochnant
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« Reply #2 on: June 14, 2018, 08:57:06 AM »

Cool idea and I like the look!
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bryku
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« Reply #3 on: June 16, 2018, 04:10:10 AM »

Thanks guys, I really appreciate this!
I will try to post bi-monthly updates instead of monthly ones whenever possible - it should keep me more motivated, and will allow this thread to be more exposed.
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« Reply #4 on: June 16, 2018, 05:18:35 AM »

Loving it so far!
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nathy after dark
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« Reply #5 on: June 16, 2018, 10:48:54 AM »

I finally got into UFO Defense this month and I'm extremely addicted so I'm down to hear the process someone might use to make an XCOM-inspired game. Bring it on!
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bryku
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« Reply #6 on: June 17, 2018, 05:21:25 AM »

Nathy, thanks for that!

So, the progress update:

I spent some time implementing the text notifications that appear on every action (hit, miss, etc.). As usual, I took what was the best from original XCom UI. Below you can see some of these notifications in action (even though not all characters animations are available):


Melee attack:

Missed a 95% hit chance. So XCom!

And ranged attacks - note that the player character on the top is flanking the enemy - that's the reason of the high % to hit.


Next stop is implementing the armor mechanics. And hopefully some new animations will become available. Stay tuned!

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« Reply #7 on: June 17, 2018, 07:51:31 AM »

Looks cool, say, do you have twitter, to follow and retwit gifs and news?
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bryku
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« Reply #8 on: June 17, 2018, 11:52:11 AM »

Looks cool, say, do you have twitter, to follow and retwit gifs and news?
Thanks! Didn't think about this, really. Might set one up in a month or two, I guess Wink
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bryku
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« Reply #9 on: June 21, 2018, 06:28:11 AM »

So the title says that there should be "rats" in the game, right?

Well here you have it: the basic enemy type - rat warrior, armed with a hand crossbow and a dagger.
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« Reply #10 on: June 21, 2018, 08:32:59 AM »

This looks really cool, dig the character art and animations. Excited to see how it looks when the environments start to come together. And more X-Com-likes is always good in my book.

Is there a strategy layer like X-Com planned?

A bit surprised you're using square tiles instead of an isometric view - have you ran into any readability issues when a character is on the tile above tall cover?
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nathy after dark
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« Reply #11 on: June 21, 2018, 09:17:16 AM »

Quote from: Tattomoosa
Is there a strategy layer like X-Com planned?

Yeah, I want to run research on rat corpses and live specimens to learn how they work Evil and then there could be animal rights activists protesting outside the lab and stuff. Tongue
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bryku
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« Reply #12 on: June 22, 2018, 07:19:48 AM »

Quote from: Tattomoosa
Is there a strategy layer like X-Com planned?

Yeah, I want to run research on rat corpses and live specimens to learn how they work Evil and then there could be animal rights activists protesting outside the lab and stuff. Tongue

Indeed, the strategy layer will be present - and I will surely write more about it after I flesh out the combat mechanics.

A bit surprised you're using square tiles instead of an isometric view - have you ran into any readability issues when a character is on the tile above tall cover?
I am currently working on the visibility thing. Indeed, characters behind a tall cover are not being completely visible; I have a few ideas on how to resolve this - I will surely write about it more soon.
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« Reply #13 on: June 27, 2018, 11:21:42 AM »

Here's some progress for you: two rogue characters, taking cover and reloading their pistols:

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« Reply #14 on: June 29, 2018, 11:42:41 PM »

They're alive!

AI characters are now taking smart actions, based on their surroundings:
« Last Edit: June 29, 2018, 11:47:53 PM by bryku » Logged

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« Reply #15 on: June 30, 2018, 10:13:45 AM »

It's time to sum up the progress made in June. I will split it into separate entries, and will be publishing them on a daily basis.

This entry will be about...

Targeting and flanking mechanics

The tactical combat part of the game is all about positioning your characters in a way that gives them the best % to hit and which will prevent them from being flanked.

Flanked enemies are displayed in yellow:


Enemies behind cover (which could be either light or full) are displayed in red:


I tried to copy the flanking mechanics from xcom, however it turned out it is not that straightforward. That is because depending on the type of cover, a character can target more places. Basically a character behind a large cover can "lean" from the corner, whilst a character simply ducking behind a crate cannot lean out at all.
Here's a graphical explanation someone did for original xcom: http://i.imgur.com/x50qZ.jpg

Right now the targeting/flanking seems to be working fairly OK, and I am not planning to alter it in any major way.

Of course the targeting system allows the player to choose which target they would like to shoot at:


That's it for today - take care!
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nathy after dark
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« Reply #16 on: July 01, 2018, 07:11:44 AM »

I'd love more technical details (maybe even code snippets?) on what you're doing for AI and such!

You might be able to learn some useful implementation details on how UFO Defense handles flanking mechanics by studying the source code of the Openxcom project (which is amazing and you should check out if you haven't).

I hope the strategy layer has a bubonic plague involved, spreading among the city! And cameos of characters from The Plague by Albert Camus would be some next-level Easter Eggs.
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« Reply #17 on: July 01, 2018, 07:32:26 AM »

From a marketing perspective, what about your game will be different than XCOM? I think it’s great you’re drawing inspiration from that (and it looks amazing!). But what’s your driving force in regards to a “uniqueness” factor? Simply food for thought for your elevator pitch!

Keep up the awesome stuff!
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« Reply #18 on: July 01, 2018, 07:33:01 AM »

That rat sprite looks glorious.
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bryku
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« Reply #19 on: July 01, 2018, 08:10:19 AM »

I'd love more technical details (maybe even code snippets?) on what you're doing for AI and such!

The next entry (which I will post later today) will be about the AI thing; it won't be too technical - however, I will add a more technical entry in the future.

You might be able to learn some useful implementation details on how UFO Defense handles flanking mechanics by studying the source code of the Openxcom project (which is amazing and you should check out if you haven't).

Hm, it might be useful to investigate; the original UFO Defence hovewer didn't have the flanking mechanism in place (only pathfinding and LOS algorithms, I believe), but still it seems like a good idea to check it out. Thanks!

I hope the strategy layer has a bubonic plague involved, spreading among the city! And cameos of characters from The Plague by Albert Camus would be some next-level Easter Eggs.
Yeah, I have most of the strategic layer idea planned out - but only in my head, for the time being Smiley When I'm done with the combat mechanics, I should be posting more stuff about the strategy layer.
Awesome idea about the Camus cameos!

From a marketing perspective, what about your game will be different than XCOM? I think it’s great you’re drawing inspiration from that (and it looks amazing!). But what’s your driving force in regards to a “uniqueness” factor? Simply food for thought for your elevator pitch!

Keep up the awesome stuff!

Thanks!
The problem that I had with original XCOM was that in the later game (even in higher difficulty levels), it was becoming pretty easy to beat (well, at least for me).

I would like to make sure that the players are always feeling that the game is one step ahead of him; that they always have to struggle to get the resources they need to survive (hint: I plan that gathering for resources will be done in the combat phase).

I basically am trying to combine the mechanics from XCOM with the feeling of being helpless I had when playing Darkest Dungeon.
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