Jam, Jam, Jam
7drl is my first game jam, possibly being paired with Procedural Death Jam. I had an itchy feeling to make a Judge Dredd type of game (in terms of mechanics, probably not atmosphere or environment.) It will probably be called Crime Central (I can change it later if I want to!)
Due to some real life time restrictions I won’t get the full 7 days worth, but that’s okay; I can always think about it when doing some other, non-game related stuff. My main objective is actually to sit down and railroad a full game so I can get the full taste of Unity 3D for future projects. To that end this is a rough schedule I’ve got for myself:
Day #1 – Plan and design (~9 hours)
Determine main mechanics and aesthetic. Create some music so I can loop it over the next week and determine whether it’s annoying or not!
Get going on the core gameplay. Generate levels, spawn the player and enemies and obstacles, and get some basic interaction going. Write this blog post.
Day 2 # – Flesh out (~6 hours)
I probably made a bunch of mistakes in Day One. I will wake up feeling irritated and make a lot of coffee. Make a main menu. Make a death screen. Make a victory screen. Maybe make a boss. Save state?
Game options or alternate control schemes? This is supposed to be a full game, not just a tech demo!
Day #3 – Tweak and polish (~6 hours)
The game balance is probably non-extant at this point. Start to fiddle with resources, turn management, enemy spawn count and positions, et cetera. Is the game fun? Is it challenging? Is anyone going to play this pile of crap?
Think about open sourcing the code while eating candy.
Day #4 – Oh crap! (~3 hours)
This is the authorized time to panic. Last day to work on this so squash any remaining showstoppers, run through the game a few more times to make sure nothing obvious was missed, and build for Win/Mac/Lin.
Let the roguelike community eat my face. Maybe I’ll get lucky and find myself with more days/time toward the end. But 24 hours should be enough to slap something playable together, for sure!
Aside: Those are some famous-ass last words.
I’ll be updating this blog post as I progress. Interestingly if I succeed then Crime Central will be the first roguelike I finish, not Steam Marines.
Thanks for reading,
8 March 2014, 12:41 a.m. EST
Finished the main music loop for actual gameplay. Still need main menu music. May wait to do that later.
8 March 2014, 1:10 a.m. EST
Finished a basic level generator with placeholder graphics. Pretty easy to knock out if you’ve made more complicated level generators before. The real meat is ahead!
8 March 2014, 1:55 a.m. EST
HUD elements! I hate (G)UI so I figure throw some elements and slave everything to them rather than the other way around. Keeps feature creep in check, too.
Added basic enemies. Don’t let them catch you, or they’ll.. keep catching you? Added an event log (only one line – the last action taken.)
8 March 2014, 2:12 a.m. EST
Surprisingly easy to setup a basic minimap in Unity. Less than 100 lines of code, and only that many because of the weird nature of the player/enemy art. On the other hand it seems non-rectangular minimaps are a bit of a pita.
I felt a minimap in this kind of turn-based, first-person game is fairly necessary. As a lesson from Steam Marines players really want to know what’s around them. I actually had facing/turning cost an action point and people really didn’t like that. I eventually caved and added an option to make it cost 0 AP. This is my attempt to head off that issue.
Aside: I believe Eben, in Roguelike Radio Episode #68, referred to spinning in a circle to see around you as “lighthousing.” I think it’s a fairly accurate term.
Unhappy with the message log on the lower left. Not sure what to do about it, though. Not even sure what exactly I don’t like!
8 March 2014, 2:23 a.m. EST
Added a RogueTemple post to be updated with progress and build links once available!
8 March 2014, 2:31 a.m. EST
Enemies can now melee the player. Built an action point system for each enemy and the player. Current action point pools act as speed, meaning more AP = act before lower AP units.
Added death screen with fading to black, music fade out, and screen shake. Everyone loves screen shake. Screen shake was probably the hardest part. It’s also not very good xD
8 March 2014, 2:38 a.m. EST
Cross-posted to Reddit’s Screenshot Saturday!
8 March 2014, 3:24 a.m. EST
I’ve been practicing pixel art for about an hour a week for the last few weeks. It doesn’t show xD Still, this is the Enforcer. He’ll punch you in the face when he looks like the left side. He’s ready to be arrested when he looks like the right side. He is NOT crying. Really.
I will do better on my next enemy…
8 March 2014, 3:58 a.m. EST
No sexy screens this time. Fleshed out basic movements, attacks, and resource mechanics. Looking into combinations and chaining.
Put together a main menu. It’s two text buttons – not sexy.
8 March 2014, 6:53 a.m. EST
Implemented those resource use combinations I mentioned earlier along with some action chaining. Gameplay actually requires some thought now – huzzah!
Gang Member. Rude. Violent. Stabby stabby.
8 March 2014, 8:32 a.m. EST
Almost winding down Day 1 and Crime Central is almost playable. Well, you can play it, but it has no ending and no goal aside from “don’t die.” Three resources tied into combinations to use/regain each other, action chains for special abilities, three enemy types in increasing difficulty, and some placeholder tiles shamelessly ripped from Steam Marines. Will work on changing those tomorrow xD
Enemies are 2D and rotate to face the player and flip around when killed. Current status:
9 March 2014, 1:27 a.m. EST
After struggling with this for about an hour I don’t know wtf I wanted xD Was supposed to be a Techno Witch end game boss. Will probably make the surrender/arrest version later and stick it in after fiddling with it more.
But for now I’m going to cut my losses and go back to code!
9 March 2014, 3:42 a.m. EST
Squashed a bunch of bugs. Tightened up the joystick axis controls; itfelt very sloppy when trying to execute commands quickly. In terms of making it a “completed” game I pretty much just need to implement the end goal and have a victory screen – huzzah!
I also have a design problem where it’s best just to dash for the elevator on each level. Need a sub-goal so the player may wish to explore/clear each level. Score is a possibility, but I’d like to avoid that if possible. It can be a lazy solution.
9 March 2014, 5:51 a.m. EST
Got quagmired in making the main menu fancy. I am an idiot.
9 March 2014, 6:48 a.m. EST
Some Win/Mac/Lin/Web builds!
11 March 2014, 12:11 a.m. EST
More time to work on this! Going to finish that Techno Witch and add her as a boss – maybe with ranged attack or aoe?!? Implement an ending – and a secret ending? Also I want to add another chain combo.
11 March 2014, 2:20 a.m. EST
Implemented the Techno Witch as the end boss. Opted to keep her melee but give her power up abilities. The level generation also changes on the last level where she spawns.
11 March 2014, 3:28 a.m. EST
Added end game status and victory counter to the main menu. Added shotgun upgrade option after the player dies ten or more times. Game is essentially a complete (beginning/middle/end) product! Huzzah!
11 March 2014, 6:48 a.m. EST
I think I’m done? Polished some assets and UI. Added some sound effects for interaction confirmation. Pushing final builds soon.
11 March 2014, 7:30 a.m. EST
Some (final) Win/Mac/Lin/Web builds!
Unity 4.3.4 project with license file (Fairly certain I used no Pro-only features.)
That’s all for now! ^_^