Monday, 11 May 2015

YouTube Channel Update

So various things have been going on recently. I have access to a new PC and so recording games has been easier for me, however I have halted progress on some let's plays for various reasons. 

Firstly the release of the remastered Homeworld meant that I decided to stop that series as I wouldn't have finished it in time and Silver is on an old PC that I'm no longer using (it's an original copy). If people would like to see me continue Silver as it is a lot of fun then please let me know and I will try to get it running or I'll get a copy fromm I don't yet own the re-mastered Homeworld but it's on my list, however quite a lot of channels did full play-throughs instantly (and I'm not a day one let's play kinda guy!). If it's requested then I will consider returning to it (although this may be more suitable on my new space-related channel).

As for Dark Souls due to the strange yet continuous instances where my external soundcard and mic's connection kept dropping in Elgato, my soul (lol) has been crushed a little bit by how much progress I can't use! I have 2 or 3 bosses recorded with no commentary; I suppose I could do commentary in post but I need to use time as efficiently as possible. If I return to it then there will be a short montage of what bosses I fought before I continue to the Depths or Blighttown (won't that be fun!). So if you want me to continue then tell me, if not then I will probably do a Dark Souls 2 playthrough when I get a PS4 and it would be ace to have people jump into the game and assist me along the way whilst I perhaps stream it?

If anyone has any suggestions for some long plays they may want, channel collaborations etc then let me know! Twitter might be the best place for that @outlandishpixel. Currently I'm trying out some MOBAs and Heroes of the Storm is next on my agenda. Jazzpunk was the start of an 'Avin' a Bash' playlist where I just try out indie games without playing them all the way through, but if Jazzpunk amuses you then I may finish that.

Finally I have started a dedicated channel to my play-through of Elite: Dangerous, an epic space sim MMO, so please go and check that out if you're interested: CMDR-outlandishPIXEL. The game is about to get LOADS more interesting with the 1.3 release so I'm looking forward to doing more videos.

Thanks for reading guys, I do these channels for my own pleasure in my spare time but it is nice to know what my subs think! -oP

Thursday, 7 May 2015

New Project Devlog #1 (Untitled)




This is my current project nicknamed '30 Days' until I decide on a title. It's coded in the GML language in Game Maker Studio. This will be my first game completed for PC.

30 Days is a digital board game, which involves drawing cards and playing hero 'models' across 30 turns each with three 'phases'. The goal is to defeat the boss at the end of the 30 turn limit. In order to do so you must have a team of heroes with high enough combined stats to reduce the boss HP to zero. It's a simple concept which could work as an actual tabletop game for one player. The design has changed dramatically since it's original conception, and I have simplified what was once a fairly complicated city building sim. As it's my first 99% coded game for PC I wanted to give myself a realistic yet challenging goal and so there is no multiplayer planned.

The game contains isometric and 2D pixel art and is themed on a tongue-in-cheek high fantasy setting. It is designed to look like a board/card game combined with animated models and a fantasy tabletop landscape. The numerous heroes and monsters are vibrant and unique and while only six have been drawn so far, there will be 36 in total of each type. The heroes are not restricted by any theme and so expect to see super heroes and a 'business-savvy squirrel'!

The code is more complex than I imagined at first but I have kept things simple by sharing code through scripts and keeping objects down to a minimum. I have reduced the amount of work I need to do by creating my own font, and drawing card descriptions in engine as opposed to drawing pixel art text in the images for each card (each event district has 36 cards so this would take too long otherwise!). I have single objects for each type of card and when each one is drawn it is assigned an ID and it's sprite is then matched according to that index. This keeps the programming efficient and simple (I imagine most people would code a card game in this way).

Devlog Video #1


Phase One
In phase one you must either draw a resource card or build a town district (which requires one of each of the types of resource). Until a district is built, phases two and three are ignored.

Phase Two
In phase two if a district has been built then you may either draw a hero card, or use a previously drawn hero to clear a dungeon. Hero 'slots' are assigned to town districts and if a district is lost for whatever reason then the hero is also lost. There are six dungeon decks each of which contains six monster cards. You must select a dungeon to clear, then choose a hero with which to challenge it. The 'battle ratings' of the models are compared and if the hero's is equal to or higher than the monsters, then you successfully clear the dungeon and it is removed from play. If you lose, then the hero is removed and returned to the bottom of the deck and the monster is returned to the top of the dungeon deck.

Phase Three
In the final phase you must draw an event card from each town district deck. These cards will have a brief description of an event and resulting modifier to the game. This could be positive or negative and ranges from drawing extra resource cards to districts burning down and being removed. As the game progresses and you build more districts then the risk becomes greater as more events are drawn each turn.

These phases are repeated until the end of turn 30 after which any remaining dungeons must be challenged. You may use any hero multiple times to challenge each dungeon but your goal is the ensure that you have enough heroes remaining to fight the boss and so sacrificing low 'level' heroes might be necessary. Once the dungeons are challenged you must select one of six boss cards to determine who you will fight. You then select each hero in turn to whittle the boss' health down to zero otherwise the game is over.


My next plan of action is to have a fully working prototype completed. The prototype will be a full working game, minus certain polish and with a reduced selection of card draws (basically the full amount of cards will be programmed, but some sprites will be duplicated). A lot of the art will remain temporary such as the plain green background (which will be a detailed pixel art landscape eventually) and the card stacks wont have any animation. The game will be playable but won't have the 'charm' that I will eventually inject into it through the large amount of hero models and event card writing. It will also be sans audio and menu screens/options.

Although this is a learning experience project I still want to produce something of quality. If you have feedback I'd be happy to take some on board but in terms of gameplay I won't be changing any of the rules of the game, only the balancing of cards and heroes/monsters. The biggest development will be the art and writing, and so if you have suggestions for heroes, monsters or events then please let me know! Ridiculous suggestions are welcome!

Thanks for reading. - oP