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July 03, 2022, 03:07:17 PM

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TIGSource ForumsDeveloperPlaytestingGuardin' Plants
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PlantsVRobots
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« on: April 03, 2022, 10:38:40 PM »

We are creating a 3D tower defense game where the player protects a magical forest from invading robots with unique plants.


April 4th 2022:
A lot of our changes this week were based around level development since we received quite a bit of feedback about our map being boring. We added 3 new unique areas to our map that the player can now explore and they also spawn enemies to force the player to move around a lot more than before. We also tried to make the days feel more unique by making our plants and enemies feel unique. We added 2 new enemy types that force the player to think about where they want to plant things and we also tried making the plant attacks more distinct so it feels like there’s a reason to use the different plants. One of the last changes we made was adding more visuals to try and help the player feel more immersed. We did this by adding lighting/particle effects to the nighttime plant, added damage visuals for the robots, added a player model, and added a lot more objects to the environment to make it feel more complete.

Some of our major things to fix over the upcoming weeks include balance, visual effects, sound effects, and models. For balance we’re going to try and take the same approach as Destiny 2 where players can feel extremely powerful but to prevent positive feedback loops we want to increase enemy density by a ton to try and make sure the player stays engaged. For visuals we are still hoping to hear back from an artist but if we aren’t able to find one we want to try and make the daytime plants fit the overall artstyle better and add better enemy models. Another thing we have been adding over time is adding particle effects to things. Since we are more comfortable with particle effects compared to 3D modeling we have been able to improve on these visuals over time instead of relying on somebody else to do them. We were able to find someone to do music for us so we’re hoping by the launch of our project we will have a custom soundtrack as well as adding better sound effects to things like plants shooting, enemies attacking, and player spraying water.



April 11th 2022:
As we are progressing to the launch of our game, our work this week was focused on presentation. We wanted to make the game complete and engaging to the first time player. We added a main menu, a pause menu, as well as game over screens. The main menu opens footage of Mother Oak, as well as the four different level areas. We then added a smoother transition from the main menu to the start of the game. The pause menu also allows the player to check the controls as well as change the camera sensitivity. We tweaked the player guidance system, to include a more steady progression to the game. This involved unlocking new plants each day, and a longer, slower guidance system.

Other significant improvements were made to the juice of the game. This consisted of brand new enemy models, for the ripper, rayyer and blazer types. These models were designed to inform the player of each enemy's abilities, such as the ripper’s spinning saw. Animations were also added to demonstrate the movement of each type, such as a particle system used to show dust kicked up by enemy movement. Finally, we added a player waddle animation, to further immerse the player in the game.

The last week of development will focus on refinement of the gameplay. Based on playtesting feedback, we are looking to make the player controls more snappy and responsive. We also recognize there are still some technical issues certain enemy AI spawning in as duds. We also want to clean up some of the plant hit boxes, so as to make the world easily traversable, even when there are many plants placed.




April 18th 2022:
As our game reaches its final state this week, we have updated the tutorial per noticed patterns in playtesters. We reduced the amount of dialog in the game and made the direction more obvious for the players to begin the game. We updated the texture of the puddles, watering can, and some of the plants to make them fit the aesthetics of the game.

We made it so that all plants can be upgradeable by continuing to water them, allowing the player to have more options in how they defend themselves. We also updated the look of the water stream from the watering can, to make it more obvious where the stream is going. Another improvement we made was to the world-building of the game, by adding some slides at the launch of the game.

The plant upgrades are also more specialized as they are watered. In addition to increasing the range, the creeping vines are able to trap more enemies, the seeking spore mushrooms get more spores, sniper mushrooms do more damage, slowing mushrooms shoot faster, and exploding pods spawn more pods. These changes make our plants more unique amongst each other.

We also added some damage states to Mother Oak and allowed her to send messages to the player to inform them when she is low on health. This gives the player an idea of how well they are performing.



Link to Windows and Mac Builds: https://drive.google.com/file/d/1oeC6x0Ot2tv5a9KS08zu7nBWymXyIYKy/view?usp=sharing

« Last Edit: April 19, 2022, 01:36:07 PM by PlantsVRobots » Logged
DarkGran
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« Reply #1 on: May 29, 2022, 02:10:22 PM »

Hi!

I liked your game, even though I usually dislike tower defenses, I guess I liked I can work around with an avatar and build freely. I was still bad at it though, so I lost my dear oak rather quickly. :P

Some notes:
1. I understand why I can't plant day-plants overnight, but why can't I water those I already got? That felt strange... then again I didn't even know that the day-plants won't be shooting overnight :p (that's basically what killed me :p but I guess it makes sense)
2. It would be great if I could jump around, even if just for fun (seems like some kind of jump happens whenever I hit a log, so why not put something like that on spacebar too :P ;)).
3. On a practical note, the game needs a wave-timer (ie. "when is the next wave starting"). ;)
4. The avatar needs some visual/animation work, or at least the watering-can. :P Otherwise I like the visual style. :)

Hope these help a bit. Keep up the good work! :)
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« Reply #2 on: June 07, 2022, 04:50:56 AM »

This is a small feedback but I think the hitbox on the water could be bigger than the water itself so that its easier for the player to harvest it. Sometimes I had to stand precisely, or even found myself unable to position to fully suck it up.
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