I Feel A Change Comin’ On

05. January 2016 Game Jams 0
I Feel A Change Comin’ On

Happy New Year everybody! Last week I posted about all the great game dev things that happened to me last year.  This week is about the good stuff that’s coming this year, specifically about what I’ll be doing for the next month or two. As much as I love Project Zeds and really want to see it finished I’m going to be taking a break for a little bit.  You can only work on a project for so long before you need to stop and clear your brain.  This is not a permanent halt to development.   I expect that after this hiatus I’ll return to Project Zeds stronger than I’ve ever been. I just need a short break.

So then, what will happen in the mean time? I’m glad you asked…

  1. This blog will continue to make its weekly Tuesday posts. I really enjoy making them and I’d hate to lose the momentum I’ve built up.
  2. This blog will transition away from being a solely Project Zeds blog and will become a general game development blog for all of my projects.
  3. I’m going to flesh out Safe or Sorry into a new project.

Yea that’s right, now that Ludum Dare is over, Safe or Sorry, my Ludum Dare 34 entry, is going to get some love. I plan to take the next couple of months to flesh it out into a small game-play experience by fixing the bugs, cleaning up the art and making a few more levels. This won’t be a full-sized game but will be a nice, brief distraction from Project Zeds.  Project Zeds is complicated to work with–between the networking, and the procedural generation and the multiple character types, it can get to be a bit much. Safe or Sorry, on the other hand, is a simple game with simple rules and a really small scope. Project Zeds is a better game, but Safe or Sorry is what I need right now.

So enough about what I will do, let me show you what I’ve already done. First of all, I’ve redesigned the monster. I’ve fixed the original topology errors and repainted the mesh. It now has a much more deep-sea Angler Fish feel to it. Below are some comparisons between the old and the new:

I’ve also fixed a lot of the problems people had with the original game. It used to be that it was hard to tell if you would get spotted by the monster, but now the monster’s vision is pretty dependable. If you step inside the cone of light he projects on the floor, you are pretty guaranteed to be seen, and vice versa. There was also no need to keep pressing the button since you could just wait while the ticker counts up. I fixed that issue by putting an upper limit on the score that’s determined by the number of monsters on the map.

I’ve also animated the new model so that as he swims though the map it’s not just a static mesh floating from one point to another. There are idle animations and swimming animations, and the monster correctly alternates between them. It now also turns smoothly instead of the rapid character movement issues from before.

Hiding from the Mangler Fish’s light in game.

Minor improvements to the map itself have also been made, including skirting boards for the walls and extra doors in the main chamber so that the monster bottle necking problem is no longer an issue.

Entrance to the main chamber
Improvements to the spiral staircase room

Various other minor tweaks have been made and i’m really starting to like where the game is going. I’ll have more information on this game’s progress next week, and hopefully I’ll be able to release a playable version of the new game before long.


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