Weekly spoiler

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Danno
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Re: Weekly spoiler

Post by Danno » Feb 16th, 2019, 2:21 pm

This week's spoiler is... map updates!
2019-02-16 map changes.png
2019-02-16 map changes.png (398.26 KiB) Viewed 386 times
I've been spending a lot of time creating new maps and updating old ones. These are the highlights:

1. Wall height - Most of the old buildings were excessively tall, so I decided to tone them down a bit. It is now standard for them to be 2 wall tiles high rather than 3 wall tiles high. The shorter buildings also make it a little easier to see pathways and such that were previously covered by tall houses.

2. Windows - Added more windows indoors.

3. Signposts - Moved signposts away from warp points. Before, it was too easy to accidentally walk into the warp point when you're just trying to get close to the sign.

4. Back doors for shops - It was sorta awkward how shopkeepers, in theory, would have to climb over their counter to get in/out of their building. Back doors have been added to make the world a little more logical.

5. Pathways - I'm aiming to finish all the pathways and connect the island together a bit more.
"I'll do the art." ~Danno 2014

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Sholto
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Re: Weekly spoiler

Post by Sholto » Feb 16th, 2019, 11:13 pm

Love the changes! My only critique would be the new fences, however. I like them visually, but if the idea is to have a functioning and realistic garden fence (since you’re also going for realism with the shopkeeper doors) then the focus would be more on pest control rather than aesthetic value. An actual farm/garden should have a fence and gate that excludes pests, mainly small rodents, whereas this new one seems to have holes big enough for the smaller variety of rodents (bunnies, mice, etc.). Not necessarily a big thing, but the farmer in me had to point it out.
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Re: Weekly spoiler

Post by Putin » Feb 17th, 2019, 12:01 am

Thanks for the update Danno, great to see that you are giving so much attention to detail. My honest 2 cents though, ignore if you are already working on them:

1. The interiors look amazing already. Can't think of anything that would further improve them (except that the outgoing tile doesn't match floor tiles, but that's a coding issue I think).

2. The grass tile looks rather plain. Idk how to change that. Maybe a more zoomed-in look, like the grass in EO at respawn point.

3. The road tiles are pretty well-detailed but look plain at first glance. The color for the cracks and that for the road look too similar. Or maybe because of my eyesight. You might want to get opinion of more people on this one to be sure.

4. More of a mapping issue, but the flowers look a bit cluttery. This is a pretty subjective opinion though.

Anyway, the game looks great as it is. Don't overburden yourself. Cheers!
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Re: Weekly spoiler

Post by Danno » Feb 17th, 2019, 2:18 am

In response to that:

1. I think the interiors are lacking the most, actually. The beige walls are very plain and don't have enough decoration options (such as framed paintings, cracks, weapons hung up on racks, etc.). I intend to make better interior wall tiles at some point.
As for the door/exit tiles, I meant to do something better at some point, but I haven't been able to decide what to do. I like having the exit tile bump out to make it really obvious. The exit tile should represent "outside", so I feel like it wouldn't be appropriate for it to be the same as the indoor tiles. I was considering making light come from the exit (leaving the exit tile non-specific), just haven't gotten around to experimenting with it yet, I suppose. It'd be something similar to the cave exits, it's just a little trickier to make that work nicely with building interiors.

2. I don't recall anything special about EO's grass. Wasn't it also pretty generic? But yeah, my grass does get pretty boring after seeing so much of it. I'll have to work on some more obvious variation or something.

3. Indeed, there might not be enough contrast on the road tiles. I probably tend to lack contrast for many things. Those hard/cracked dirt roads weren't even really meant to be used for roads like this, I just haven't gotten around to making proper pavement tiles.

4. The excessive flowers and such are my way of keeping the grass from looking too plain, I suppose. Here's a look at a map with the flowers and general debris removed:
sans flowers.png
sans flowers.png (330.36 KiB) Viewed 374 times
Here's another one with flowers and some other garbage removed:
sans rubbish.png
sans rubbish.png (302.32 KiB) Viewed 374 times
Anyway, I think they brighten up the maps a bit and make them look less plain. As I make more graphics to fill in these big, plain fields, perhaps flowers will be used a little less, though.
"I'll do the art." ~Danno 2014

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Errors
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Re: Weekly spoiler

Post by Errors » Feb 17th, 2019, 3:55 am

Well, to me I would expect flowers to grow less in dim lit forest. Perhaps more mushrooms and weeds type tall grass? You can use different color mushrooms like..the Cortinarius violaceus, or Indigo milk cap, and obvious red ones but maybe bigger like Amanita muscaria. Also dont forget edible plants like Squash, there are atleast 5 types of squash that grow in dense forest floors, along with pumpkins which are the Cucurbita ficifolia, there are lots you could use ;> (yes i googled the hell out of those names but i did know they exist lmao)
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Re: Weekly spoiler

Post by Danno » Feb 17th, 2019, 10:21 am

o, it looks like I just happened to pick out a screenshot from basically the only dark forest with flowers. Normally, there hasn't been flowers in the dark forests (such as Calm Woods), though I don't see the harm in sprinkling a few here and there. But yeah, making more kinds of mushrooms (for forests) was actually one of my next priorities. There's just always so much to do that I often neglect creating new tiles/decorations. )-::
"I'll do the art." ~Danno 2014

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Putin
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Re: Weekly spoiler

Post by Putin » Feb 17th, 2019, 1:24 pm

By EO grass, I meant like this. It somehow looks more natural. Idk why though.
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Re: Weekly spoiler

Post by Danno » Feb 23rd, 2019, 5:38 pm

I'll aim to improve as we go along. The brighter green grass in particular is one of the oldest things I made, so it's kinda lacking a bit. Well, it gets the job done for now, anyway.


This week's spoiler is... Nothing much? We just released v5 and it has all my latest work in it. Here's a closer look at the alpha birbek, which is new to this version:
2019-02-18 alpha birbek walk.gif
2019-02-18 alpha birbek walk.gif (11.08 KiB) Viewed 291 times
It doesn't move continuously in-game, so a lot of my work goes unnoticed, unfortunately. I spend a ton of time detailing the feathers and crap to make the animation look nice. Well, maybe one day, monsters will be capable of moving more than 1 tile at a time.

This monster took nearly 10 and a half hours (!!!) to make. I was hoping I'd get faster at this as I went along, but that's a new record for slowness! I suppose it couldn't be avoided with the detail put into each feather, though.
"I'll do the art." ~Danno 2014

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Re: Weekly spoiler

Post by Danno » Mar 3rd, 2019, 12:01 pm

Nothing to spoil this week )-:

I've mostly just been working on plans for game mechanics, including things related to dungeons, classes, weapons, skills, and status ailments. There isn't much to say about any of it since none of it is final yet. Aside from that, I just barely got started drawing a new title screen. When it's ready, I intend to make some more maps and get Abi to patch them in together.
"I'll do the art." ~Danno 2014

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unit
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Re: Weekly spoiler

Post by unit » Mar 4th, 2019, 12:43 am

Danno wrote: Nothing to spoil this week )-:

I've mostly just been working on plans for game mechanics, including things related to dungeons, classes, weapons, skills, and status ailments. There isn't much to say about any of it since none of it is final yet. Aside from that, I just barely got started drawing a new title screen. When it's ready, I intend to make some more maps and get Abi to patch them in together.
you keep up the good work mate!

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Re: Weekly spoiler

Post by Danno » Mar 10th, 2019, 1:43 pm

Well, I finished the new title screen I mentioned before, so here it is in low resolution!
2019-03-10 title screen.jpg
2019-03-10 title screen.jpg (86.55 KiB) Viewed 162 times
I'm working on some new maps to complete all the existing pathways. Nothing particularly exciting, it'll just connect the world together a bit more (allowing players to choose between multiple pathways to end up at the same destination) and/or give people more options for grinding spots (using the existing monsters, nothing new).

Anyway, as I mentioned before, I'll send the new title screen over to Abi after I'm done with the maps.
"I'll do the art." ~Danno 2014

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Re: Weekly spoiler

Post by unit » Mar 11th, 2019, 2:18 am

the real spoiler this week is swords, ignore dannos spoiler.
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Re: Weekly spoiler

Post by Danno » Mar 16th, 2019, 1:07 pm

unit wrote:
Mar 11th, 2019, 2:18 am
the real spoiler this week is swords, ignore dannos spoiler.
o pls
I have been doing some weapon planning lately, though. I do hope for it to be one of our next big things.

This week's spoiler is... some new maps I made.
2019-03-16 NE Seashore.png
This deadend path from Calm Woods is now complete.
2019-03-16 NE Seashore.png (303.03 KiB) Viewed 102 times
2019-03-16 escape.png
I added some obviously different tiles to large bodies of water. If I ever warp a player into the water and then one of us logs out, they now have a way to escape.
2019-03-16 escape.png (3.26 KiB) Viewed 102 times
2019-03-16 tunnel.png
A hidden tunnel that acts as a shortcut. Where could it be?
2019-03-16 tunnel.png (116.97 KiB) Viewed 102 times
Abi's really busy these days, though, so you might not see these maps immediately.

Anyway, I haven't had as much time/energy lately to work on art, so I've mostly just been working on planning classes and skills. Basically, I have a few goals in mind with it:
  • Each class should have a different focus with their build. This is accomplished by assigning 4 primary stats to grow. For example, a dark mage's primary stats might be: M. ATK, Max MP, M. DEF, SPEED. Respectively, those primary stats might increase by these amounts per level: +2, +1.5, +1, +0.5. Anyway, the idea is to see the big picture and ensure that each class has a different build, and also that different classes use different #1 primary stats.
  • Classes should be inherently different in some ways. One idea for this is basically to give each class some forced, non-transferrable passive skills/attributes. Besides varied stat builds, I was thinking about things like small abilities, such as a warrior class having the ability to charge up default attacks to deal more damage, or a hunter class being able to see hidden traps. I was also thinking each class would be strong to one type of monster and weak to another. For example, a quick swordmaster being strong against insect type monsters while being weak against golem types, such as the tumblok.
    tldr: Encourages multiplayer with situations such as a hunter carefully leading a party to avoid traps. Also situations where one player, despite being high level and very powerful, is at a severe disadvantage against certain types of monsters - so it's a good idea for them to have at least one party member who is not weak to that same type of monster.
  • Skills should be designed to be unique across all classes. For example, if a warrior has a skill that deals 2x damage with their normal attack range, no other class would have a skill like that. I'll also be avoiding things like fire/ice/lightning spells that have identical attack ranges with the only difference being elemental implications or status effects. The spells would have to actually be different, such as a straight fireball vs. AoE ice vs. lightning that hits tiles in a zigzag pattern.
  • A class' skillset should follow a theme. An obvious example would be a healer being all about aiding teammates, not really having any way to deal damage on their own. Other examples could include things like a class that moves around a lot and hits enemies quickly; a class that doesn't move much and focuses more on carefully aimed attacks; a class that charges forward and plows down enemies in its path. Basically, different classes should fit different roles, not just have everyone in your party surround a monster and attack it from all 4 sides.
  • Each class should be intended for use with a certain weapon, but not restricted to it. For example, an archer would be intended to use a bow, but they could also use a sword if they wish. The archer's skills would have to be based more on an "archer's ideology" rather than "I have a bow equipped and I shoot things far away". To equip inappropriate weapons, I was thinking the player might need to gain some profiency from another class first, such as reaching lv15 as a warrior before they can use a sword in any other class. Anyway, lots to think about regarding balance with that stuff.
  • Different weapon types should have varied purposes. Rather than every class having a default, 1 tile P. ATK, I was thinking it'd be more interesting if weapons had more differences. For example, a mage staff might hit 2 tiles away with M. ATK damage; a healer's staff might be used to deal small P. ATK damage to enemies while smacking allies heals them instead; a spear might have a P. ATK with 1-2 tile range; a sword might only have 1 tile range, but it could be a little stronger than other weapons. This isn't stats on weapons, though - it's just characteristics of a certain weapon type. That is, all swords might be stronger than all spears, but no sword would be stronger than another sword.
  • Players can choose 1 passive skill, upgradeable to 2 passive skills later on. You'd earn different passive skills from different classes, then equip them as you please. When the player has access to equip 2 passive skills, certain combinations might compliment each other better. Some passive skills might be more situational than others, such as "shortened status ailment durations". Others would be a way to change up your class/gameplay a little, such as "added chance of causing knockback and increased damage with default attacks".
BIG TL;DR: Classes are all being planned at the same time to prevent overlapping skills/playstyle. The end goal is to make your character's combat customization more interesting while also promoting party play. I want classes to actually be different, not just "stand in front of enemy and hit skill hotkeys F2, F3, F4, repeat regardless of class". Ideally, the player should not feel punished for strictly sticking to one class nor mixing and matching skills from various classes - they should both be viable approaches to the game and allow the player to adjust the balance of their role (dealing damage vs. supporting team vs. distracting enemies etc.).




PS: All that wall of text is subject to change
"I'll do the art." ~Danno 2014

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Re: Weekly spoiler

Post by Cevil » Mar 17th, 2019, 1:03 pm

I agree with most of your ideas with classes and skills. Tunnel map is looking good by the way. I'm not sure though if I agree with your idea with no sword being stronger than another sword. So all swords would be the same strength? Am I not understanding fully? Could you please clarify what you meant?


"That is, all swords might be stronger than all spears, but no sword would be stronger than another sword."

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Re: Weekly spoiler

Post by Danno » Mar 17th, 2019, 11:17 pm

Cevil wrote:So all swords would be the same strength? Am I not understanding fully? Could you please clarify what you meant?
Yup, that's exactly what I meant. There's a separate equipment system planned for allowing players to equip their way to higher stats. The idea here is a very strict divide between cosmetics vs. stats. There are really only 2 options:

1) Equipment has stats and changes the appearance of your character. All players will strive to gain the equipment with the highest stats and end up looking exactly the same.

2) Equipment doesn't have stats, it only changes the appearance of your character. Players can look however they want with no penalties. They can set their own goals with what equipment to get.

You can boil that down to whether or not you care about players looking the same. If the end goal of all players is to look the same, then I might as well save everyone the trouble and just not bother making any new equipment. To me, this line of thinking also applies to weapons; even your weapon is part of the way you express yourself through your character. When you bring stats into the equation, there's the right choice (high stats) and the wrong choice (lower stats). Rather than telling players which weapon they should equip, I think it'd be more interesting if they can just be drawn to the one they think looks coolest.

There's a lot of concern over this radical idea, but I think people should ask themselves: what do you even want the stats for?
Take Zelda: Ocarina of Time, for example. There's the Master Sword and the Big Goron's Sword. A one-handed sword and shield vs. a more powerful two-handed sword with longer reach, but no shield. You can clear any dungeon or beat any boss using either sword. That is, the game is designed in such a way that your weapon doesn't matter so much - the scaling stays fairly consistent, yet it remains challenging and engaging right to the end.

It's a game where the players never have to say to the developers "Hey, why can't I get a more powerful sword?" - simply because there is no reason to have a more powerful sword. tldr, I'm aiming for something more along those lines. A game that's fun to play, not a game where you have to grind for better equipment just to survive (rendering all past equipment completely worthless in the process).



(I know Zelda's not an RPG or MMO, but it's a good game, which I think makes it suitable as inspiration for game design. If we wanted a game identical to existing MMORPGs, wouldn't it make more sense to just play those instead?)
"I'll do the art." ~Danno 2014

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Re: Weekly spoiler

Post by unit » Mar 18th, 2019, 1:48 am

classes sound very interesting, i cant wait to see what you guys come up with, so basic classes would be -
hunter
archer
mage
warrior
healer
????

also the idea of equipment not having stats does concern me abit but you guys havent let us down yet so ill go with it, wonder what you guys will do hmmm

also the light in the new cave map just dosent seem to fit the map? i dunno maybe throw a fire torch or something up there, like who goes yeah bitch lets throw a light on this wall! but thats just me.

great work danno & abi! keep it up guys
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Re: Weekly spoiler

Post by Danno » Mar 19th, 2019, 7:39 am

We don't have support for animated tiles/objects yet, so a torch with a flame that doesn't dance might look worse )-:
But yeah, a torch would look better. I just reused existing graphics to slap this tunnel together for now.
"I'll do the art." ~Danno 2014

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