The Actions of Items: Still building menus. Along with a reflection on why the items menus ended up taking longer to implement than I expected.
I'm an amiable dragon…
After 20 years using Verge, I’ve finally finished something! Epic of Serinor: Dawnshadow uses a very slightly modified version of the Verge 3.2 engine and will be available on Steam and itch.io on December 21.
Dawnshadow is a modern RPG styled after the great 8-bit classics of old. It is the result of an individual quest to play an old-school RPG without having to play an actual old-school RPG and presents an original story and world in a classic style inspired by modern MMO and mobile gaming.
I’m super excited. And almost too nervous to think straight. Hope to see you all on the solstice.
I’ve been a lot of things over the years. Funny what a recession can do at the start of your career. At present, I’m the corporate training manager for a logistics company. Which is nice, since it’s a job that pays a professional wage and still ends at the end of the day so I can do other things. Like make games, or act in community theater.
I’m also a husband and father of a four-year-old (who I swear hasn’t stopped running in this airport play area for the hour I’ve been sitting here.) Both are very supportive of my creative endeavors. My daughter likes to draw or color at her desk while I’m “building” at my computer. My wife mostly tells me it’d be easier just to write a book, but is thrilled I’m finally publishing something after seeing all the projects I never finished.
Work of the Week - Feb 27: I largely abandoned art work this week to get more of the menu systems in place. The bulk of that work is done now, though one of the more difficult menus (quest logs) is yet to come. Especially since I want to implement some changes from how Dawnshadow did it.
This is coming early since we’re leaving for a family vacation this afternoon. Which also means I’m not going to have time to finish up the last few things in my current sprint before I wanted it to end, but it’s fine. IT’S FINE.
Getting through sprint 0.1 means the underlying systems of the game are 75% to 80% complete. My current sprints match up with the same content and tasks I did the first go-round with Dawnshadow, so I have a pretty good idea with where I’m going. If my estimates hold true and I keep pace with last time, Epic of Serinor: Harbinger will be wrapped up and ready to release February 2022.
Vector art takes me longer than 8-bit pixel sprites, though. Especially since combat’s animated now.
It’s been almost two years since the last time I had a cold, and now I feel deathly ill. Turns out pandemic isolation was a good counter to all kinds of illnesses.
Depression sucks, fam. Do not recommend.
I have no idea when I did all of these, but it sure wasn’t just in the last week. That is when I went through and updated my backlog, though, so they’re all showing up in my queries for work completed this week.
You can see the shackling of the first raptor at this video link (because I don’t care enough at present to convert to gif.) The raptor’s combat animation is obviously incomplete, but the process largely works. Still working on getting her to play well with the menu and battles, but she’ll at least follow you around.
Tartuffe should be done by the end of next week, so I’ll have that time back. It also means I’m going to start asking for donations soon. Which is, you know, just a fantastic time for everybody.
I think a three-frame animation should work with only slight variations for physical and magic attacks regardless of weapon. So one idle, one shared “I’ma hit it” frame, a physical/magic charge frame, followed by shared “I’m hitting it” and “I hit it” frames. I hope. I need to see it in actual motion. Maybe with particles.
I think after that I just need “I got hit” and “I’m out” frames, and it should be ready for import and testing.
A few things.
One advantage to transitioning to vector images is it’s much easier to size and rotate things and still have them look nice. So this week, Sai got weapons that show up while he’s walking around. Which will be important once he has to start fighting with them at this scale.
Also, chibi-style characters have really big heads, and I don’t entirely know what to do with the hilt on that greatsword when viewed from the side.
Oh! And side note. Did you know that, when you upscale and smooth out classic 8-bit, 16x16 character sprites they end up looking like intentionally chibi-style characters?
I would get a lot more of my own work done if I stopped taking unpaid creative projects for other people. But then, I’m technically in charge of the theater company, so I guess it’s still my own work. Bottom line, I’m tired of compositing video.
This week, I converted or drew the icons for all of the auto-attacks for the basic weapon types. Mind Stab (the basic attack for the Psion skill) is also included here because I redrew it to match the style of the armed auto-attacks and there was a gap since spears don’t have a magic attack option. I also updated the list of abilities in my design document to make it easier to identify what icons are complete and which need to be drawn depending on which areas of the game world are open.
Yes, it was only an hour, but some weeks, that’s what I have to give.
Quick and short today. I agreed to do cinematography and video editing for the production of Tartuffe that’s being put on by the theater company I’m in charge of. So not a lot of time for personal work this week.
This week I sat down and started work on designing how I actually want Harbinger’s battles to look. Dawnshadow used a very static display of the back of the characters and front of the monsters, all of whom flashed when they attacked or were struck. My goal is to have combats right on the map.
Canonically, the encounters in the Shadowed Vale are random as Syn throws nightmares at Sai from nowhere, so that part isn’t changing. And since I’m not thrilled about animating all the characters in all their various armors with all their different weapons from all four different directions, it’s still going to use a static setup of heroes on the left and enemies on the right. But this will make it at least a bit more dynamic and root it better in the world.
Now I just have to build the thing.