Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Dungeon Diving 5

Do not fret I'm still alive!
Latest Build

First, my apologies: I took about the last two weeks (some 60 hours of in-game time) to play/beat Persona 4 (which I highly recommend). I might still go back for the platinum trophy, but right now I'm back with my nose to the grindstone on Dungeonsomethingorother.

The first big thing of the week is sort of defining a scope. Scopes are important (especially to an indie developer):
#1 To make projects lean. I'm a firm believer that less is more in video games. You set out with a goal for your game, and you want to accomplish that goal to a satisfactory point in as little features as possible. This makes you emphasize the GOOD features, rather than a dozen mediocre features.
#2 Scope creep makes finishing projects MUCH more difficult, and it's important to set goals and accomplish them. An unfinished game is just as worthless as a game that was never started. So to help that ultimate goal of releasing a game, it's important you set clear boundaries for what you must do to make that happen.

For this game, the focus is on a roguelike design (random content generation, punishing deaths) but with an RPG twist. Characters will learn better skills as they progress, and these skills will help them progress further. Your toolbox of skills you bring into the dungeon is what's ultimately going to dictate how well you do, and collecting as many tools for your toolbox is going to be vital for your success.

With that, here's my current outline:
--Characters when they are defeated in the dungeon will restart from the beginning. They'll lose all their gear they collected, and possibly all of their money as well after they've been given the opportunity to buy upgrades.
--Characters may find skills in the dungeon, buy them outside of the dungeon, or learn them from leveling up.
--Characters will level up, and in doing so receive a health boost, a stat point or two, and possibly new skills
--The only gear slots will be weapon/offhand/armor. Warrior's offhand will be a shield, Mage's will be a tome that'll reward skills and stat points, and a rogue will get a second weapon (etc). You'll find more gear in the dungeon, but you'll likely be able to buy "base gear" (which will always persist over your character), and "entry gear" (that can only be used on the upcoming run).
--Stats will be some combination of brawn/intelligence/dexterity/luck. Brawn will be used for your "non-sp" attack damage, intelligence for your skill damage, dexterity for skill cooldown reducing, and luck for crits/better drops.

I'm gonna start with just one dungeon, and go from there. The goal will eventually be to have more, but I want to get one that progresses like I plan in my head.

As for build updates:
--The UI is quite functional now, you can find/equip gear and they can have tooltips
--Chests now fade away after being looted
--Code was cleaned up quite a bit. Still a lot to go, but it'll be easier to understand down the line
--Minimap completely redone and much easier to expand upon now
--Damage numbers over the player/enemy's head when they're injured
--Stats/Experience/Levels in, although real formulas haven't been designed yet

That's all for now!

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