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May 23, 2022, 09:58:33 AM

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TIGSource ForumsCommunityDevLogsLife Guard - 3D Metroidvania inspired by Ico, Parasite Eve and Fear Effect
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Author Topic: Life Guard - 3D Metroidvania inspired by Ico, Parasite Eve and Fear Effect  (Read 1193 times)
Rin
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« on: December 21, 2021, 05:05:46 AM »

Hey everyone!

With 2021 coming to a close real soon I thought I'd try posting stuff about my game online to motivate me to keep on track!

 Currently called "Life Guard" , my game is a combination of a bunch of childhood favorites mixed with some other mechanics that have slowly come together over the past few months.

For more regular updates check my Twitter https://twitter.com/EffeteDenizen

 A lot of games have factored in to the design I currently have going, the biggest being this lot;



 The game takes the on-rails and fixed cameras of games like Ico, Parasite Eve, Fear Effect and Onimusha to help build atmosphere by directly controlling what the player is seeing in each area and help design encounters knowing where the player will be looking all the time.

 I have most of the core mechanics in and working but it's not ready for human eyes yet. I'll hopefully have some game play to show off later in the year.


 As it stands, I have no idea what the game should look like. I came up with the mechanics first and then built the game around those. It's essentially setting agnostic and could be given any art style or setting and still function just fine.

This has been my biggest sticking point, I feel I'll have to hire an artist with more talent than me to establish a visual style!

At the moment I've tried a few but I'm undecided and don't want to waste time/money before the game is working. Here's some sculpts or player character ideas so far;



 

If this sounds cool then please feel free to follow along. I update things pretty regularly on my Twitter: https://twitter.com/EffeteDenizen
« Last Edit: Today at 04:21:07 AM by Rin » Logged
Rin
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« Reply #1 on: March 19, 2022, 08:09:41 PM »

So I looked at my old builds, notes and art and realized I've been working on this game for a full year now in my spare time. My day job is usually more than fulltime so I usually end up working an extra 3-4 hours each day so when I get home I'm just dead on my feet and don't get much done in the evenings.

That being said, I have some arty bits to show off. These are already a month or so old but I wanted to post an update.


The Health Recharging point. Here the player can regain some much needed HP after taking damage.


This one has a much darker purpose, if you can read the Kanji you may get a clue as to what it's for.


Some old assets arranged in my test level.


The new assets basking in the summer sun.

 I've set myself the goal of submitting this game for the Tokyo Game Show this year. I have a few months to get the art style nailed down and made pretty before the submission deadline.

 By the end of April the prototype will be feature complete which is very exciting. It's already reached that point where it "feels" like I'm playing a game instead of a pile of mechanics.

Thanks for looking!
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JeremyNunns
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« Reply #2 on: March 21, 2022, 06:51:40 PM »

Did you make those assets yourself and what was the process? Looks very realistic and great texture on the stone.

What do the Chinese/Kanji characters say?
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Rin
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« Reply #3 on: March 23, 2022, 03:03:30 AM »

Did you make those assets yourself and what was the process? Looks very realistic and great texture on the stone.

Thank you! Yep, all of these models are entirely of my own creation using two different workflows.

 The standing stone was sculpted in zbrush, retopologized in 3DsMax and then textured using Substance Painter

 The "Lantern" style monument was low-poly modelled in 3DsMax first, subdivided and then sent to zbrush for detailing. Then baked and textured using Substance Painter.

What do the Chinese/Kanji characters say?

Deciphering the Kanji is an easter egg in the game. They use the Japanese reading of the kanji, each one hints at what the object does in the game. Getting the Kanji to look correct was possibly the most time consuming part of the models. A very specific font had to be matched! Fonts that include Kanji are expensive so I had to get creative.

 I live in Japan and have been really inspired by what I find by the road as I travel around on my bike.
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JeremyNunns
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« Reply #4 on: March 27, 2022, 05:51:51 AM »

Wow I've got a lot to learn about 3d modelling it seems! So many stages you've gone through there I wasn't aware of.

Haha OK - wil be interesting to solve the puzzle then!
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Rin
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« Reply #5 on: March 30, 2022, 02:22:59 AM »

It definitely feels intimidating at first but now I find it pretty straightforward to make assets like this.

My new bugbear is making efficient textures! I found out I can use different opacities to hide even more maps inside an alpha and I don't even know where to begin!
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Rin
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« Reply #6 on: April 12, 2022, 02:43:47 PM »

​No pictures this time but I have finally taken a big leap forward and settled on a setting for the game!

I've spent months working on this problem and it feels great to finally have that nailed down. I have already created some assets which I will hopefully post up for you all to see soon.

​settling on a setting had also let me make a start on the story and character side too. Now everything has the context of a setting this has been much easier (but I think I will need to collaborate with someone on the story as writing is definitely my weakest suit!).



In Japan we have Golden Week at the end of April. I'm going to use this holiday to make as much progress as I can.



I am also trying to submit my game to the Tokyo Game Show in September!!


The deadline for entries is the 27th of May so wish me luck.

If anyone has experience submitting for this show I would really love to hear from you. What state was your game in when you applied?
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JeremyNunns
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« Reply #7 on: April 25, 2022, 06:20:31 AM »

What is the setting you've decided on?

Wishing you luck! Sorry I wish I could help with the Tokyo Game Show query but I don't know anything about it.
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Rin
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« Reply #8 on: April 28, 2022, 07:14:56 PM »

What is the setting you've decided on?

I'll be doing a big update soon, it's staying in a relatively grounded low fantasy setting. The game is going to look graphically like FFXII or Metal Gear Solid 2.

Wishing you luck! Sorry I wish I could help with the Tokyo Game Show query but I don't know anything about it.

Thank you! Encouraging words are always very welcome in the world of solo dev. Let's hope I make the deadline!
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Rin
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« Reply #9 on: May 08, 2022, 02:59:12 PM »

Just a quick update to show I'm making progress.

 It doesn't look like much, but learning how to texture in UE4 took me my entire weekend.

I'm really proud of this even though adding colours has made the shape seem more bland, props will hopefully cover that next.

My day job is really hard at the moment and still asking for Regular 12 hour days and several 6 day weeks. I'm starting to worry I won't make the deadline for the Tokyo Game Show.

Encouragement appreciated!


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Alain
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« Reply #10 on: May 10, 2022, 05:13:25 AM »

Encouragement appreciated!

Keep up the good work! Nice to see more UE devs on the forum Smiley
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Rin
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« Reply #11 on: May 12, 2022, 03:00:02 PM »

Thank you!
UE4 has been a fun experience too, I've used Unity and PhyreEnginge in the past but wanted to get a second engine under me.
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Alain
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« Reply #12 on: May 13, 2022, 07:24:47 AM »

Thank you!
UE4 has been a fun experience too, I've used Unity and PhyreEnginge in the past but wanted to get a second engine under me.

Quite a while ago I also switched from Unity to UE4 and am really happy. But I assume that my problems with Unity might have been caused more by my inaptitude than by the engine itself Wink
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Earworm
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« Reply #13 on: May 22, 2022, 08:30:51 AM »

Hey Rin,

I'm a huge fan of the games that you posted in your initial post (especially Parasite Eve and Onimusha). Your assets are looking really good and I'm excited to see where this project goes! What do you have in mind for a battle system?
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Rin
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« Reply #14 on: Today at 02:12:03 AM »

Hey Rin,

I'm a huge fan of the games that you posted in your initial post (especially Parasite Eve and Onimusha). Your assets are looking really good and I'm excited to see where this project goes! What do you have in mind for a battle system?

Thanks for your reply! Knowing that there's another person out there who may enjoy the game is wonderful!

 The games combat is a bit of a hybrid between Onimushua and Parasite Eve. I loved both of those games and have always been a huge fan of games that use a fixed camera but wanted to have a combat system that worked nicely with the camera being out of the players control.

The game uses a lock-on system and like Parasite Eve, the player only has ranged attacks so they want to keep their distance from enemies.

It's leaning a little towards the "Survival Panic" genre popularized by Dino Crisis, with a single enemy being a big hazard and the player will have to take care of themselves and their resources to survive. It's pace is definitely more akin to an adventure game which is the Ico inspiration.

Combat is all real-time. I'll be uploading a video soon!

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