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  • Robin Robin

    This week I drew more pixel art. Mostly trees and shrubbery (ones that look nice and aren't too expensive!).

    I've also been working on various ways to get plants to sway in the wind. One possibility is a vertex shader, and the other is using rotation/scaling along with tweens. I'm trying out the vertex shader approach first. I have yet to get anything working, but hopefully soon.

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  • Robin Robin

    This week I finished a slime animation that looks really squishy (what I showed a pic of last week).

    Other than that I mainly took a break and played Horizon Zero Dawn since it was a free download and something I've been meaning to try out but never did. I tend to rarely finish open world games due to the time commitment required, but it was fun and interesting.

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  • Robin Robin

    This week I spent some time getting Nez working with FNA instead of Monogame. I'll probably use FNA going forward, though if needed I can switch back to Monogame fairly easily.

    I also played around with the Dear ImGui integration that Nez has for debug panels. This is a feature that I wished I had used earlier because it probably would have saved me a lot of time. It lets me change change scenes or update properties of various entities and components at runtime(or even add new components to entities), which allows me to instantly see the results of tweaking these values. Previously I'd keep modifying code and rebuilding to test out the effects of property updates...which seems really silly now looking back on it. Nez also allows wiring up custom ImGui windows which I probably will make use of for debugging.

    alt text

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  • Robin Robin

    The pinnacle of my development this week was drawing a ... drumroll ... dead tree! (Maybe it's a visual representation of my free time this week 😞 ).

    alt text

    There will be some weeks where I get a lot done, mainly when I get a boost of inspiration. And some weeks where I just draw varying amounts of things. So goes the timeline of a hobby project.

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  • Robin Robin

    This week was another week of pixel art and tile art. More tiles mean more graphics variety which means the player will get less bored looking at the same patterns! Nothing to show yet...because it's all just a bunch of random tiles that will eventually come together.

    Lots of non-game dev stuff happened that took away more of my time. One of which was interviewing at and getting a new job for various reasons.

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  • Robin Robin

    This week was PI planning at work (a scaled agile framework concept), so I didn't have much free time this week.

    But I did manage to do some tile art 😑

    alt text

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  • Robin Robin

    Not a lot to show for this week's work, but I mainly did tile art and planning, with a bit of gameplay/animation tweaking to get a smoother feel.

    I drew more tiles for the intro area of the game, and I also decided to drop the roguelite idea that was originally planned(that aspect was only in the early stages anyway). I did this because it really doesn't make sense within the main context of the game, and I think a deliberately designed world/screen layout will be more interesting for this game. If I actually finish and launch this thing, I may bring back the roguelite aspect as an extra game mode post-launch. But it's on the cutting room floor for now.

    The main goal of the game is to save a bunch of tiny people who have been captured. There will be one to save on every screen, and the obstacles/enemies that are in the way may get progressively harder. The path through the world will be non-linear, and the player will easily be able to go back to previously visited screens in an instant. The sub-goal of the game is a creation/destruction aspect that I'll describe in a bit.

    The focus of the game will not be to obtain abilities that allow for progression (I wouldn't consider this a "Metroidvania"). Instead, most abilities will be available from the start. The goal will be to combine all the various abilities to reach the tiny person on each screen. There will also be a measure of creation% or destruction% on each screen...which contributes to an overall creation/destruction rating.

    So what do I mean by creation and destruction? This is basically 2 different modes for the beam that the player shoots, which has impacts on the environment and lifeforms on each screen.

    • In creation mode, shooting enemies enough times will make them friendly. Any dead lifeform (whether it is a plant, enemy, or animal) can be revived if shot (even if previously killed/destroyed with the destruction beam). The creation beam has a very short cooldown, so rapid fire will not be possible. It will be a harder more to play in overall.

    • In destruction mode, shooting life forms enough times will kill them. If an enemy is friendly, it will become hostile when shot. The destruction beam has no cooldown and can be fired rapidly...making the game much easier. But there could be consequences to this.

    That's about it for now!

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  • Robin Robin

    So far this week I've done the following:

    • Further refined overall game intro, basic story, and goal.
    • Refined/Simplified planned game mechanics. I cut out some features that seemed low priority. A focus of the game will be to combine a handful of skills to solve increasingly more challenging scenarios.
    • Implemented "momentum transfer" when swapping between inside core and outside core. Normally outside the core, powers are very limited, but this should add some interesting new ways to get past obstacles in tiny person form.
      Vertical Momentum
      Vertical Momentum
      Horizontal Momentum
      alt text

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  • Robin Robin

    This week consisted of more small gains. Not all my posts will have screenshots, videos, or art. Those will come whenever I feel like there is something worthwhile to show.

    I completed the animation sequences for exiting/entering the core. These were done through a series of tweens and coroutines(as opposed to animation frames) so that I could control the associated rotations and displacements with smooth precision.

    After completing this, I've established a lot of what I consider to be the base of the game. The gameplay will combine being inside/outside the core in interesting ways.

    I switched gears and went back to working on the outline of the game. This time I was focusing more on story and the various areas....while the initial outline focused on mechanics. With this (currently) solo project, I went the route of using an outline and Trello board instead of a detailed design doc and something sophisticated like Jira. Since I've already got the game direction in my head, the outline guides me along a path to the end while Trello gives me a list of immediate tasks for the week.

    So far this setup has worked well, and it allowed me to make more meaningful progress, and somehow helped me stay motivated. I think before jumping deeper into programming again, the immediate future is going to be focused more on further expanding the outline, drawing more tiles, and designing/creating enemies.

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  • Robin Robin

    This week, beyond more bug fixes I also added the animation sequence for when the player ejects from the Core. I'm still working on the reverse of this for when the player goes back into the Core.

    The Core currently hovers above the player when they are outside of it. I plan on adding a more fluid "bobbing" animation (using tweening) when it's hovering, but for now it is more stationary. The player is more floaty when in "tiny person" form outside of the Core.

    Short Video

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