Not much got done this week by virtue of me being out of town for most of it. Most of the improvements were the small number of engine-related things that need to be done before we go into pure scenario stuff. I’ve developed (but not finished) a mechanic for upgrading items, for example, and fixed a number of bugs that had been mentioned during the first prototype release.
Next week I’ll likely finish up the rest of the bugs and start putting in the sections of the map that were dummied out in the prototype. I’ve been asked multiple times to put a map in the game, so that’ll certainly be done before the next prototype.
Salty here. I got some good feedback from the prototype last week. We got nearly 2000 downloads and less than 10 feedback posts, which is about what I had expected.
I’ve finished most of the shopping interface and have added additional party members to the game. I’ve got a long list of improvements I need to make from the beta testers plus some I found myself that nobody else noticed (shame on you lot!).
As for art, we’ve got sketches of Mei’s transformation to a slime and her bee form. Alraune Mei is on the way, at which point I’ll be ordering Chickenwhite to finish the remaining unique characters before she finishes the rest of the TF sequences. The sketches will be up on Patreon soon for anyone who wants to see them.
This month’s budget report might be a little later than usual since my folks want me back home for Easter. I’ll see if I can get it done while away. Progress will also be a bit slower for the same reason, but I’ll see if I can fix the SDL loading bug and get a Mac Allegro build going while I’m off.
Comrades, head over to the downloads page to get this release! Or just click here (Windows) (Mac)!
Right, before we go any further, here are the objectives of this release:
- Balance feedback. I need to know what you think of the combat. Is it too difficult? Were you able to understand how it works? Does it take too long? Are the XP rewards too low relative to the benefits of levelling up?
- Writing feedback. Do the cutscenes feel natural and make sense? Does the conversation topic system (Only Rochea has one right now. Talk to her again after being transformed into an Alraune) make sense and feel natural?
- Artistic feedback. Bear in mind that most of the art in this version is placeholders. The Alraune, Bee, Cultist, and Slime are the finalized copies, but everything else is pending. Do you like this style? How can it be improved?
- Map design feedback. Do the map layouts make sense? Do they funnel you in the right or wrong direction? Too many enemies, too few?
Currently, a lot of the maps are in placeholder states. Trannadar Trading Post is currently not implemented, and Breanne’s Pit Stop has a placeholder NPC.
- UI feedback. The UI is a placeholder at the moment, but do you like the layout?
- Bugs. If you see a bug, report it!
All feedback should be put on the TFGS forums if possible. You can also use the comments here or on the patreon and I will see it.
Currently, the SDL version cannot read file paths for saves. This is due to a bug in Boost and I need to completely replace Boost for the SDL version. This also applies to the Mac version (since it uses SDL). The Pandemonium.exe on windows does not have this issue.
Maps that have incomplete exits will have black borders on their edges to prevent you from walking out of the map. You know, in case you were wondering what those were.
Did you like this? Back us on Patreon! I need the dosh to pay the artists…
If everything goes well, the Adventure Mode Prototype Release 1 will be coming out next Monday.
This is contingent on me getting a few code things handled. We’ll be using whatever art is available, and filling in the parts over time. Remember, this is a bug-and-feedback release, much of Chapter 1’s content is either not present or dummied out since it’s incomplete. I’ll be looking to see how everyone likes the combat system, art style, gameplay, and so on.
I’m thinking putting together a prototype survey might be in order for the 2nd or 3rd release, depending on feedback. I don’t prefer doing surveys since they tend to constrain the valid answers, but most people don’t write long-form feedback so we make do with what we have.
Chapter 1’s development is proceeding quite well. I’ve grabbed some music and SFX from opengameart.org (if you’re making an indie game, go there. It’s the best damn site ever!), did a bunch of editing to make them fit, and did some programming tricks to make the battle sequences look nice even with their terrible, terrible UI.
I’ve also completed writing for the first three transformation scenes and will be putting them in the game this week. Sit tight, Adventure is on its way!
Comrades! This week, I’ve completed the first cutscene and worked out the various bugs that come with doing cutscenes. I’ve also got a lot of the placeholder work in and have asked the artists to get me flat-colored images until Rune can finish up the to-do list.
It is my objective to have the first prototype released in March, but it might wind up being early April as I don’t want to knowingly release something that is broken.
Here’s what will be featured in the first prototype release:
- Defeat scenes for all of the above
- Mei’s Slime form, Bee form, and Alraune form.
- Level-up UI
- Possibly Saving and Loading
I think this will be enough to start getting bug-test feedback and such going, as well as whet your collective appetites.
Have a screenshot of some of the placeholder graphics.
Salty here. Didn’t get quite as much as I wanted done this week, as I had some contract work that took priority. That’s all handled and sent off now.
For coding, I’ve completed the combat interface as far as I wanted it, including the victory screen. I’m now working on the level-up interface, which takes inspiration from other RPGs to provide a system that’s fun, deep, and not intrusive. Because, let’s face it, you’re not here for the mechanics, but you’d notice if they were absent.
We also have some public art posted on the Patreon – the slime girl! This is the sketched copy provided by Chickenwhite, it is currently inked and waiting for Rune to color it.
We are now most of the way through the primary concepts of the characters for Chapter 1. Werecat and Rilmani still need sketching and a lot of coloring needs to be done. I’m not quite ready to begin scripting work, but that should begin fairly soon.
Salty here. This week, we conducted a poll of Patrons to see what monsters they wanted in Chapter 1, since we had some slots open. The results can be found here.
The monster list for Chapter 1 is currently: Alraune, Bee, Cultist, Slime, Werecat, Maid Clone, and Rilmani.
In other news, the emotions page for Mei’s dialogue has been sketched and inked. I’ve completed most of the combat handling for now, I still have to finish up multiple attacks per turn, retreating, and item usage.
Here’s a list of things that the engine needs to complete before a prototype can be put forward: Retreating, Multiple attacks per turn, Item Usage, Experience/Cash handling, Saving/Loading, testing cliffs, per-topic dialogue handling.
I expect the first prototype will be sent out sometime in mid-to-late March. It’ll likely be a fully public release since we don’t have a lot of patrons and I’ll need more testers than that.
I’ve compiled the budget information for January and February into a pdf for everyone (patron or not) to view. That’s right, unlike most producers you can see where the cash actually goes.
I won’t include specifics on exactly what the artists made until the chapter it is in has been completed, just because I don’t want to confuse people when we revisit pieces or redo old work. It’s part of the development process. If you would like to see an in-depth report, I can provide one – just ask!
Special shout-out: Kasumi Takanawa, our first 10$ credits patron.