The last week of January has been witness to the awesome progress made on our Forest Druid character, the new enemy abilities introduced to the server and the Game Client’s many fixes. If you want to see all of our January devlogs at a glance, then head over to the Project Gamechanger website where we’ve posted our first monthly devlog summary! But if you’re an OG and want to know all the nitty gritty details, then carry on reading.
3D Character Modelling
As we mentioned in last week’s devlog, with the Twilight Elf and Storm Elf models now complete our Character Artist can move on to creating the Forest Druid. The female Human base mesh that was made back in December was also used for the Forest Druid model, although some slight adjustments were made:
- The ears were made to be pointier
- The face was made to be a bit fuller
- The muscle lines were accentuated to help make the body look more wooden once the model is textured
Our Character Artist then went on to begin creating the Forest Druid’s clothes and outerwear. We wanted the Forest Druid character to appear at one with nature and so this was kept in mind when designing the model’s appearance. Our artist first began blocking out the remaining elements, such as accessories, on the Forest Druid. He then:
- Created a bohemian-inspired set of clothes
- Adjusted the clothes to fit better on the model
- Tested whether branches could be wrapped around the arms and legs
- Created sculpted leaves to use for the base of the hair
- Worked on flower buds to use as additional detailing
The tests carried out to see how or if we could wrap branches around the Forest Druid’s limbs were successful. We will be using an alpha texture on those wrapping planes to create the branch shape, as well as a normal map to give depth to that shape. Since the characters are seen from afar, it should trick the eye into thinking the branches are made up of wrapping cylinders. By using planes instead of cylinders, we can save on the character polycount.
Our Animator has spent a lot of time this month ploughing on with the animations of several of our characters. This week, she created a few different idles for the Rat enemy for when it’s standing still. A run cycle was also created for the Rat, showing its key poses and movements.
Several different profile poses were also created for one of our Human Knights as we try to choose the best way to pose him from the side. Our Animator used a few references when doing this to ensure that the Knight’s posture and overall body language was reflective of a real life knight.
With our new Enemy Intents System in place and functioning properly, all enemies in Depths of Erendorn now use their abilities correctly. We think this will make our dungeon crawler RPG a little more difficult and enjoyable as NPCs now have much better use of their abilities. With this in mind, more enemy abilities were created this week in the server:
- Scorpion Sting: This deals 2 Nature Damage ignoring Resilience and Armour. It has a 3 turn CD and costs 5 Energy.
- Wasp Stinger: When used by a Wasp, this ability deals 1 Nature Damage ignoring Resilience and Armour. It can be used once per turn and costs 2 Energy.
- Swiftstrike Jaguar can now use Jaguar Ambush Passive: This gives the Jaguar the ability to ambush by giving it a turn when it spawns before the players.
- Wolvajin can now use Scent of Blood: This gives the enemy +1 Movement and +1 Minimum Damage when attacking targets under half health.
Some of the fixes carried out on the server this week involved resolving an issue where enemies would stop using their abilities if the level had to be serialised and deserialised. As well as this, rerolling a room shouldn’t stop enemy status effects from working anymore. Damage shields should now expire after the correct number of turns instead of lasting forever, and they should also now get correctly reduced by damage.
The final task carried out on the server was implementing fixes to several abilities:
- Birds of Prey duration now lasts 5 turns instead of 3.
- Shadowleap and Shift Strike should now have more predictable results when used against 1 tile enemies and they will also prioritise the tile directly behind the target.
- Test of Allegiance was delivering Void Damage instead Physical Damage, an issue that has now been fixed.
- Sprint movement bonus should only last for 1 turn now.
- Haste should also only give the player bonus movement for 1 turn.
- Bolster should now expire at the correct time.
- Unique Blessing should also end at the correct point.
- Frost Missiles now activates 3 times as originally intended.
- Burning Hands should now deal the correct damage type.
- Solemn Word now works correctly due to the damage shield fixes from earlier.
We were excited to implement a new mechanic into Depths of Erendorn this week. Ambush is a mechanic that means that enemies with the Ambush ability get a turn on their own after they spawn. The Swiftstrike Jaguar was the first NPC to try this out and it has been functioning perfectly so far.
As always, a lot of changes and fixes were made to the Game Client this week. First, the layout group for the ability bar was changed so that the “Configure” toggle is always positioned right next to the bar, no matter its size. The scrollbars in the character selection screen also had a change of colour so that they now fit in with the current dungeon theme. Before, they were the standard Unity colour and didn’t match the Depths of Erendorn design.
The following fixes were also carried out this week:
- The description for both the Disease event and the Disease status was fixed. Disease now lasts for 15 turns instead of the entire dungeon and this is reflected in the description.
- The health bar layout group for entities, i.e. the players, was fixed so that they don’t have the AI behaviour class indicator.
- The positioning of the elements within the health bar layout group for ALL entities was fixed after some elements were overlapping with others, e.g. the status effect icons would often overlap with the health bar.
- An issue was fixed that caused the health bar objects to update incorrectly for entities. This had to do with the object pool that contains the health bar objects.
- The duration indicator for status effects was fixed. Due to a server fix, the duration was previously off by 1 in the client.
- A problem was fixed where an infinite amount of “Join Game” panels could be opened. Now, the player can only open one at a time.
- A problem was occurring where the cursor would not disappear when pressing the rotation button. An earlier fix that was implemented for the tooltips broke this, but we managed to resolve the issue this week.
- A problem that caused the cursor to reappear during hovering after pressing the rotation button was also fixed.
- When changing hovering targets for tooltips, the cursor will now become visible and will remain that way until the tooltip information is shown. Before, it would remain invisible.
- The cursor was disappearing when hovering over the “Configure” toggle next to the ability bar. This wasn’t supposed to happen and so a fix was implemented.
- The Null Reference Error was fixed for when the AI behaviour class indicator does not exist.
- The AI behaviour class text was not appearing when hovering over the indicator. This was the final fix made to the Game Client this week.
The idle of Erendorn's rat enemy will be made to look more aggressive over the next few days. One way we will do this is by making the teeth bigger.
We’ve got a monthly summary of our game development progress waiting for you over on our company site, so if you’ve missed any of our devlogs this month that’s the place to go. If you want to know more about a particular aspect of our game development process, make sure you leave a comment below!