Playing Catch-up

Playing Catch-up

In the last couple months we’ve come a long way with the game, but not as far as I was hoping.

So what has changed?

Well we have a robust and feature-packed item and inventory system that allows not only players, but also NPC’s and enemies to utilize any item created in the game. These systems feature dual wielding with zero limitations and even two handed weapons. Now you can play the entire game left handed if that is your preference. I’ve been wanting a system this fluid for a long time and I’m relieved it’s finally become a reality.

Next up we have swimming. Swimming and water in general was something I’d been dreading for a long time. I wasn’t sure how to go about the entire mechanic or if I was going to restrict water to being knee height altogether. Luckily some of my regular viewers came to my rescue and water is now fully implemented and working like a charm. To prevent issues with underwater combat and spells, I’ve restricted all items use when underwater and in place of it, your primary and secondary attacks give you a slight boost in speed instead. Because of this boost in speed, and the float mechanic, you can even launch yourself high out of the water to reach secret areas. Keep that in mind.

Housing is now just about fully implemented. Currently you can purchase a house, lock your doors to keep other players (and NPC’s) out and of course, decorate your house with furniture items you collect. This has been a planned feature for a long time and it’s finally here and just about fully functioning. You can craft, find or purchase furniture throughout the game to place in hour house. Some of this furniture has uses and others are just vanity pieces. I’m hoping to expand on the housing feature later on by allowing players to use wallpaper and flooring items to change their walls and floors, respectively.

AI is currently in the works. The goal is to give each NPC, whether an enemy, villager, etc. an item they can carry around. This can be a weapon or a spellbook or even a flower or a shovel for villagers. This should add some variety to NPC’s as well as give the player an idea of what to expect when wandering into an enemy camp. In addition to this held item, enemies will also carry a special item or two that they can use when things get hairy in combat with the player. Guards and other friendly NPC’s will also have be given access to an item like this.  These items can be potions which heal or buff them in some way, food items or even a trap they place for their enemies. These items will help keep combat feeling more natural and dynamic so it isn’t the same hack and slash thing every time. Players will have to anticipate if/when an enemy would use their emergency item and fight around it.

AI will also be equipped with a secondary weapon much like the player would use in special combat circumstances. This item will be a ranged spell or bow for melee characters and a melee item for ranged characters. This means that if a player attempts to “cheese” the AI by standing on an unreachable cliff to attack, they’ll simply swap to a ranged weapon and still be able to engage the player. Some enemies may even have a special teleport spell which lets them close the gap and keep the player on her toes.

Finally, item storage. This feature has been quite the workload for me, with a bit of work left to go. The item storage system has evolved quite a bit from the game’s first conception and will hopefully be one of the last steps before the game is ready for an alpha test.  The storage system allows players to place weapons and spellbooks on racks and shelves to visually display inside their homes. Players can also place more miscellaneous items into a storage trunk which is purchased or crafted in towns. These items will be displayed as icons to ensure that all items fit inside the trunk without any odd visual bugs. This means that the player can store any item, including large weapons and small keys inside the trunk to store safely in their homes (or a bank). Each storage trunk holds 8 items, meaning that true collectors will need quite a lot of these trunks.

The only features we have left to work on before an Alpha build are storage and AI. Once these are done I can spend a few weeks building out the world and adding interesting content for players to discover and interact with during the alpha test. Hopefully once all the bugs are resolved the majority of the work left to do will be a character creation/saving system and a whole lot of content building.

The last week I’ve been spending some time on promo art for the game and redoing the main logo. I’ve come up with a handful of characters which I think encompass the heart of the game’s concept. I plan on using these characters plus more for marketing and promotional art going forward. What do you think?

While I’m still aiming toward an April release, I want to have ample time to market and get information out to the public. So if I need to spend longer marketing then I’m prepared to push that date back.

Thanks for sticking it out through this update! I’m hoping to start video dev logs soon for Youtube, which should cut down on these walls of text quite a bit.


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