Time for some highly unfocused progress!
I’ve continued working on my storyboard editor. I now have conditional choices, which will grey out certain choices and prevent the player from selecting them based on certain game triggers / player stats. This’ll save a ton of boilerplate in the storyboard, reduce overall file sizes and allow me to do some cooler things like RPG elements.
I’ve also added an “End Game” state, which it kinda needed because what’s a story without an ending, or several?
I’ve decided due to my major issues with releasing anything to work on one side project per month, with the goal of having something releasable (even if it’s a free alpha) by the end of every month. This will be while working on the next Hyper Gauntlet version. Hopefully this will curb my tendency to start and never finish a billion projects.
I’ve begun some preliminary groundwork on December’s project, a game where you build tanks / ships (I’ve not decided yet) and code them yourselves using a node-based programming interface. I’ll be reusing a lot of tech from my Choose Your Own Adventure maker because code reuse is a great idea and saves so much time. Here’s some stuff I’ve been working on
Pixel art normal maps! Pretty simple technique really, create a diffuse map in an art program, add no lighting to this. Then create a height map for the diffuse. Use Unity to convert the height map to a normal map and attach both to a Unity Standard shader. Looks pretty sweet, huh?
I did a bit of experimenting on composite ships, using a couple of bits of programmer art. Unfortunately I forgot to turn off the rotators, and you end up with this monstrosity.
But here’s what it looks like with those rotators turned off, much better!
I’ve also been working on my pixel art. I decided I was fed up with my games having pretty awful programmer art, and while my vector art is okay it’s nowhere near great, nor is it applicable to all styles of game. I’ve had some experience pixeling before, but never really took it very far. My first pixel art pieces I made as standalone bits to work on their own, these wouldn’t really work in games, but that’s ok because I just wanted to get some experience in pixeling.
This is a fighter called “The Ocelot”. It’s not great, but it got me back into some of the basic shading principles. I’ve used pillow shading pretty extensively, which is a massive pixel art no-no.
My next ship, a cruiser called Angstrom’s Hammer. is a bit larger and more detailed. I like the shading on the various beams, but I don’t like the shapes coming out of the secondary engines (the blue). I also struggle with greebling and detail right now. Everything either feels too blank or too cluttered to me. Hopefully I’ll manage to overcome that soon, but I haven’t managed to yet.
A rock! Because most games have rocks. Finally managed to drop pillow shading, I think, and the art looks better for it. I’m not every good at shadow perspective yet, but you have to start somewhere, right?
Rather surprisingly, this cloud started off life being my most hated piece. I just couldn’t get the shaping or detail level right. There’re still some bits I’d like to change, but I’m now really happy with it.
That’s it for this irregular period of time, come back at some point in the future for another update on dev goings on!