Fishing, Sprites & Release Plans

This week I worked mostly on the visual aspects of Tales, improving sprites and drawing promotional art. Sorry about the delayed posting date, sometimes it happens. Oh well, let’s get into it!

New Character Sprites (AGAIN!)

For the fourth time, the character sprites have changed. This time not as drastic as the first three though. This time I added shading and polished the animations, removing strange artifacts and making them seem a little more natural. Oh, and they also have eyes now. Previously  they did not have eyes because of the theme, “you’re just another person” and not having eyes made the characters seem more like they were all the same. But now they have eyes, which makes it easier to give their faces more expression like surprised, angry, happy and so forth. Skjermbilde 2017-04-09 15.15.11.png

Itch.io and release schedule

Because of Valve’s recent announcement of removing Steam Greenlight and the new pricing model still being uncertain, the plan is currently to release Tales of Astya over at Itch.io instead. I spent a little time refreshing my pages, even the one for Color Tunnel, and you can see it by clicking here. There are currently no files uploaded, I’ll get to that shortly.

I’d like to talk a little about the release schedule I’m imagining for Tales. First up is releasing the base game, with the Uspya region fully done. After the initial release, I intend to spend some time fixing bugs that show up or are reported. After most of the bugs are smashed, the plan is to release yet another region as a free content pack, then iron out most of the bugs in the following month. This is how I intend to release all the regions in the time after initial launch. The extra content will hopefully be much faster to develop, since most of the base systems are already in place and most that needs to be done is writing quests and creating new art assets. I don’t want to predict how long each of the packs will take, but I’m looking  at around 4-5 months for each of them. Time will show. Progress will obviously be shared on this blog as it unfolds.

Fishing

Another addition this week is the fishing system. This is something I’ve wanted to add for a while now, but never really got around to doing. But here it is. It’s very simple at the moment and I haven’t got around to making animations for it just yet, but they should be implemented sometime this week.

fishing.gif

Early prototype captured in the testing map. This was made before the new sprites were implemented.

The system is similar to how it works in World of Warcraft, where you walk up to a school of fish and press the action key. In order to catch the fish you got to press the Reel button when you hear and see a splash. Each school can hold up to three different kinds of fish and other random trash, even a treasure chest (chances are very slim). You can then take your newly caught fish and bring it to either a stove or a campfire to cook it, or sell it to a fish monger if you need some money. Currently there are five different kinds of fish you can catch, with more planned for later expansions.

Other changes/additions

  • Increased base resolution from 960×540 to 1920×1080, due to text being blurred when scaling up. Now it looks super crisp and nice, also with more items shown in interfaces with lists in them.
  • Redid all graphics for interfaces, including buttons, frames, icons and more to have  more detail in them, but still having a clean feel to it.
  • Made a proper version of the world map. Now it looks like this. It’s also shown on the loading screen when starting the game.worldMapBorder.png
  • Cities and towns now have their own loading screen images, showing how the location looks while waiting for it to load (doesn’t take long, usually only 1-2 seconds)
    • Certain maps are loaded and unloaded when needed to prevent performance from being bogged down. When entering a location with interior maps, those maps are being loaded.
  • Fixed more issues related to Z depth rendering.
  • Finished cooking, brewing and alchemy interfaces.
  • Replaced more of the trees from 3D to 2D.
  • Fixed up a lot of interior maps (houses, shops, dungeons etc)

That’s all for this week, hope you enjoyed. See you again in the next one! Oh, and lastly I wanna post some GIFs I made for a podcast I listen to, Rad Crew. Enjoy!

New Damage Formula & Character Creator

For the past two weeks, I spent some time updating the damage formula to be slightly more realistic, redesigned the character creator to better fit the rest of the interfaces in the game and drew the basic shape of the world map.

New damage formula

A new damage formula has been implemented, intended to increase realism and make the player care a bit more about what equipment they are bringing with them when heading out. With this new system, weapons are split into three categories; Sharp, Blunt and Ranged. Sharp weapons are things like swords, daggers, small axes and such. Blunt weapons cover maces, clubs, greatswords, war- hammers and axes and last Ranged covers bows and crossbows.

Blunt weapons are generally heavier, slower and more expensive to purchase, but deal more damage per hit. Sharp weapons is the other way around; cheap, fast and deal less damage. Ranged weapons are a mix, where you can either use Shortbows, Longbows or Crossbows. Shortbows shoot faster, Longbows shoot longer and Crossbows offer a middle ground between those.

Sharp and Ranged, except for crossbows, deal less damage towards plate armor. Instead when fighting these opponents, you should use a Blunt weapon instead to instead crush the armor. Sharp weapons are still effective towards light armor such as leather or chainmail, and more if the enemy has no armor at all.

World Map facelift

The world map has gotten a facelift, going from Excel spreadsheet style to something that looks like a proper map. It’s still gonna need some work to make it complete, but here’s what I got so far.

astya-world-map

New character creator

Back in October 2016 I made a post about making a new character creator interface. Now, it’s time to post about that again. The new character creator screen has all the features of the old one, along with some new randomization buttons and layout. The old layout wasn’t coherent with the new design philosophy of interfaces, where most of them now have sub categories that you can choose between. Here are some of the new things you can do with this character creator:

  • Choose a gender
  • Randomization
    • Hair
    • Hair color
    • Clothes
    • Clothes color
    • Statistics
    • Gender (50/50 chance of either)
    • Name, based on gender
  • Rotate the character to get a proper preview (up, down, left, right)
  • Better performance

So without further ado, here’s some screenshots showing how it looks:

Minor stuff

Apart from the new stuff mentioned above, some smaller tweaks and additions have also made it into Tales, list below.

  • Icon changes
  • Resized message box text and height
  • Made outhouses interactive after testers complained they couldn’t use them
  • New alchemy and cooking recipes
  • Changes to the outposts quests to fit a stat theme based on their location. EG Strength up North and Dexterity in the South and so forth
  • New traps; spinning blades and swinging axes
  • Fixed some locations where player can get stuck (this’ll probably be on more lists in the future)

That’s all for now, thanks for reading and have a nice day.