Another Day Update Blog 2020
Back in Summer 2018, we started development on a game based off some characters and world I started making when I was in middle school. I wanted to make an RPG because I love them dearly, my favourite being The World Ends With You on the Nintendo DS. It became how we started work on the project
Melo made a dialog system, fighting system, and dynamic camera for the fighting and overworld gameplay while I animated some sprites for the main character, which became the start of getting him to move around the screen. It felt like a real thing— we were making a real game. We quickly had a little project that was becoming a much larger and more serious project. We had to change gears a little and start planning things out better.
The end of the summer happened to be when I started college, and while my time studying and honing my art skills has been great, it has meant that the game ended up on the backburner, only to be saved for free weekends and short breaks between semesters. To make up for the lost time, I would spend my class break time huddled over my tablet trying to make new sprites for what became the first complete area. However it wasn’t enough to just keep working, we really needed to plan. It was something that we learned through some research on game development, and we couldn't be more thankful to learn about it.
Planning means we could take the time to research things, as well as set out a plan on what we need to do and how we would go about doing it. Maybe the progress wouldn't be very visual or exciting to show off, but it's been great for us. We’ve also taken this time to learn things for the production of the game. Melo has been learning to draw to help out with my duties and I’ve been learning various fighting games as research. My last trip to Peru was filled with visual development for the game, studying trees and plants commonly found on the coast, and Melo began studying latin jazz and cumbia to get the right music genres for the world we wanted to make.
Unfortunately, as both Melo and myself (especially myself) are still in college we are hard pressed for time. However we both plan to graduate (fingers-crossed) at the end of the year, in which I will be moving towards focusing on the game in a (hopefully) more full time position.
Where are we right now
The most recent exciting news has been the completion of the first story draft! It’s very important to solidify the story for the game as it will rely heavily on the plot to dictate characters and locations, and thus the art that needs to be made for those. So far the first draft is a scribbly mess, but we intend to keep refining it until it becomes something we can actually work with.
As posted on the previous blog and on our twitter, we do have a few things already made in the engine:
- Fighting system (including hitboxes, hurtboxes, and pushboxes, as well as hitstop, input buffering, and a
state machine for several attacks, as well as crouching and jumping)
- Pause Menu
- Dialog system
- Lockon Camera system for enemies in the overworld, and a dynamic camera for the fights that
changes location based on the location of the player and enemy
- Item menu and usage
- Elevated terrain in the overworld, like stairs and hills
We also have a good handful of assets I’ve made before. They’re what has been seen on the development twitter as well as my own social media accounts. They're not exactly placeholders but not exactly all final polished work. They do however help me communicate the art direction for sprites — the overworld in particular.
Plans for the future
Though we have a lot of things set up and ready to work off of, we can’t really move on more until we have more assets, which in turn relies on having a story solidified. I’m the one leading the project so it’s not something I can hand off to Melo to figure out 100% like the battle system. Which also means, if I’m not working, the project isn’t moving forward.
We’re going to hold off on new updates for the time being, but we’ll be back in 6 months time with another update. Hopefully I’ll be out of school, and hopefully I have things ready to begin churning out new assets everyday. This is our first project though, so I’m sure we’ll have more hiccups and mistakes across the way.
We’re really thankful for everyone that has been interested in our little game. It’s our first game and we might be a little ambitious and maybe a little over our heads but we hope it's all worth it. The story and characters are something very near and dear to my heart and I hope you can all get to play the finished game someday so that I can share that with you all.