[DEV] More animations – bugfixes – Pyro update

This week I spend most of my time on the enemies, I implemented most of the animations. There are still two enemies that needs to be done. I hope I can start on these next week. So far the enemies have an attack and idle animation. After the animations, I adjusted the enemies so they would fit a bit better into the scene by upscaling them and fixing some behaviour issues. The issue where enemies would flicker or stutter when getting knock backed is also fixed. There were quite some little bugs that got fixed this week.

The last time we got the feedback that the enemy who throws fire wasn’t very clear in the aspect that the player had no idea what was coming but suddenly took damage. I didn’t really want to change him into an enemy that threw a stick and sets you on fire since I already have bowmen who shoots sticks at you. I changed him into a guy that has toxic gas in his belly and two torches in his hands and whenever he wants to attacks you he combines these two things and spits it all over you (that’s how I imagine the future animation will be). Whenever the player stands in this toxic gas/smoke he takes damage. That should be a lot clearer. Don’t touch the green stuff.

[DEV] Player – enemy visibility – enemy animations & new portals.

Started off the week by fixing an issue where the player wasn’t visible enough behind a pillar.I Made some adjustments so the shader is alot brighter. Still not a big fan of this solution I’d much rather make the pillars semi transparent. Going to change that this week. Furthermore, I started on implementing the enemies new animations (attack, idle/walking). While this seemed fairly easy to do I still had some issues with timings being off with the animation and the instantiating of the object he shoots. God bless the invoke method. I am currently working on implementing the animations of the melee enemies that should be done this week for sure. Lastly I updated the home of our enemies, they got a new fancy pentagram to spawn from. The spawn point has two obvious states: open and closed but, the player has the opportunity to seal the portal for a period of time. You can see this by the white cross and the corner points lighting up.

[Dev] Player visibility – Enemy updates – repairing visuals

This week I wanted to give the player the same treatment as I gave the enemies concerning the visibility behind walls and objects. Since our pillars are gigantic I made it so that the player’s silhouette gets drawn when he’s behind a pillar. First I considered to make the entire pillar transparent but I wasn’t too sure about it since our pillars contain a lot of information so I don’t know if it would be a good call to make them entirely transparent. I might try to fiddle with this again next week.

I decided it was time to update the visuals of grotesque (the enemy who runs to a pillar and explodes) an example can be found in the gifs at the top.

Currently in the game it was quite unclear if you repaired a pillar or not so I gave it a particle to visualize it better. The particle only plays when you successfully repaired a pillar, so you can kind off count in your head how many pieces you have left.

I also finally implemented a version of the flamethrower where I think it would serve a purpose in our game. I changed it to an enemy that targets the player and spits out fire towards him. I didn’t quite like the wanderer running around in our church and throwing fire anywhere he didn’t quite feel like a threat to anyone so I wanted to change him.

[Dev] Bugfixes, Game Phases & atmosphere.

This week we focused mostly on fixing the remaining bugs, we finally found the cause of that one bug that turned your character into an auto pilot. The bug was caused because we didn’t always lock the cursor on the screen which made your character lose focus of certain inputs. After that I spend some of my time on upgrading our tutorial level. Implemented the new meshes with textures etc. Also, got rid of those ugly tutorial canvasses and placed all the necessary info on the ground like we saw in a tutorial from a wario land game. I also changed the gameplay quite a bit, I split the game up into two phases. The first phase is the attack phase where you try to clear the room from all the enemies. Once that’s done you have fifteen seconds until the next attack phase starts. In those fifteen seconds, you’re in the defend phase which is where you try to close portals or repair your pillars since it’s no longer possible in the attack phase. With this we want to divide the player’s focus into two objectives.
Last week we kind of rushed replacing the enemy meshes with the new ones which caused some funky behaviours from time to time so I cleaned that up as well.
I also started messing around with the atmosphere in our game, since we have a course about particles we might as well put it to good use, right. I created a mist effect to give our church a more doom and gloom effect, next I am going to try and see if i can make a lighting effect. We have most of our gameplay so far, so next up is game balancing.

[DEV] Enemy visibility & (ranged) enemy updates.

This week I worked on a bit more quality of life changes regarding enemy whereabouts. Since we changed the level our pillars grew in size so it became more frequent that our enemies where behind them and therefore invisible to the camera. This could be quite frustrating for the player since his church was still taking damage and he couldn’t know where it came from. I created a shader as a solution for this. The shader simply draws the silhouette of the player when it’s behind the pillar or out of vision. I am planning on using the same thing for our player but I am holding off on it until we get our new player model. An example can be seen in one of the above screenshots. I made another kind of shader for the players and the walls of the levels. If the player walks behind a wall and is out of vision of the camera the walls will become transparent until he moves back into vision.

Another thing I did was change the bowmen a bit, they used to shoot an arrow but I wasn’t too fond of the idea of shooting millions of arrows with rigid bodies into the level. So, I changed up the arrows with a particle effect which seems to be a lot nicer and more visually attractive than a super tiny arrow. The rest of my time I spend on adding the new enemies we got from our artists.

[DEV] Feedback fixes and new enemies

When we got the playtesting feedback we started filtering out the ones we thought were useful. We tweaked the gameplay a bit according the feedback we received. The portals can now be closed quicker so you have time to close more of them during the break between waves. Enemies behind pillars should now be more clear as well. I also cleaned up the enemyAI bit by bit until I lost motivation for it. We got the feedback that the game might become a little bit repetitive after a while. So, I worked on some new enemies to put into the game. One of the is the pyromancer who wanders around in the level and spawns fire whenever he feels like. He’s quite tanky as well so you should deal with him rather fast because they spawn fire very frequent.

The second enemy is more like a mini boss with some more interesting mechanics. He’s a big guy with a sword and shield. Just mindlessly spamming your attack on him won’t work, he’ll block all the damage with his shield. I am currently working on his attacking, if you dodge his slow attack there are a few second where you’ll be able to do damage to him until he regains his defensive stance. He’s not quite ready to be put into the game so I’ll continue working on him the following week.

[Dev] Player Feedback : Mini tutorial – Enemies

This week I shifted most of my attention to player feedback again. Right before the game start you have a little while to explore the level. I added a small tutorial which will try to explain the basics of the game to the player. While the tutorial is being explained, you can run around and get a closer look on the things being explained. The first panel is about the pillars you need to defend; every explained item is also indicated with an arrow if it’s currently off screen or a box indicator when it’s on the screen. The second panel is about the portal, how they work and how they can be closed etc. The third panel is about the UI interface where you can see the number of bombs you have left or the amount of rubble you picked up to repair your church. After that you can choose to explore a bit more or start the game. As the game continues there is a moment where the pillar drops the first rubble piece you can pick up. At that moment, the game will pause and explain the dropped items.

After that I experimented a bit with new enemy types. I put my pyromancer guy a bit to the side and started on a big guy with a shield. He’ll be a fairly tanky guy with lots of armor and a shield which you must destroy first. I wanted to make him an enemy you cannot fight head on but rather one that you have to dodge, then get close and attack. Lastly we thought it was quite annoying you could heal your church but not yoursef so enemies now drop a health orb which will fly to the player.