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Story, Tactics, and Art. A modern re-imagining of the classic 16-bit RPG. Read more

New York, NY Video Games
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This project was successfully funded on July 28, 2013.

Story, Tactics, and Art. A modern re-imagining of the classic 16-bit RPG.

New York, NY Video Games
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Update - 01/18/13

35 likes

Hello everyone, hope your new years are off to a great start! It’s been a while since our last update, and we’ve been hard at work on lots of tough areas since then. Here’s the rundown:

Art 

Environments are continuing to come together. Since the last update, we created over 150 assets for our towns’ exteriors alone to ensure we have varied environments throughout the game. These assets are created in a modular format so we can create visually distinct structures efficiently: 

We ran into lots of challenges getting rotated buildings to work with our grid. These took some time to sort out, but I think we’ve come up with a solution that works. Here are a few samples of our latest environments: 

I’ve been continuing to refine our process for creating levels and making lots of improvements to our editing tools. For anyone interested, I’ll try to put together another “how its made” video as soon as I can find some time. 

Sound 

Aakaash’s awesome work on our soundtrack continues. Here’s a sample of his latest! 

Development 

Apart from streamlining our level editing tools, my development focus in the last two months has been in two areas: cutscenes and combat.

Since the story will play an important part in the game, the ability to quickly generate precisely timed cutscene events directly from gameplay is critical. Before our Unity port, cutscenes needed to be timed and scripted by hand, which was complex and time consuming. This time around, I’ve implemented a visual editing tool which I’m extending to support the many custom events we’ll need. Here’s a shot of what it looks like in action:

Using the timeline (top), I can visually edit complex events with multiple characters acting simultaneously while previewing them in our editor (bottom), all without having to synchronize the actions in code. This will vastly accelerate development in the coming months as we implement the game’s story elements. 

My second focus has been on implementing the core aspects of the combat engine. Things are still very early, but over the last few weeks I've gotten core features like the combat grid, player input, movement, animation, and basic AI in place. Here’s a quick preview of the combat engine running along with some of the other above mentioned features: 

The ability to make real-time adjustments to combat parameters is a huge upgrade, since it’ll allow me to quickly try out new ideas and better balance the game.

So that’s the recap. Things were very much WIP in the last few weeks as we moved past some of the biggest pre-production hurdles I expect we'll face (hence the delay). Thanks for sticking with us.

Time to go try The Banner Saga. Can't wait, been waiting all week :)

Comments

    1. Creator James Roy Peters on February 3, 2014

      Man, that moment where you walked around in the grass; I kept expecting a pokemon to appear...

    2. Creator John Rhee on January 21, 2014

      Thanks Brian! We'll definitely be trying out different things with how we present dialogue and share as we do.

    3. Creator Steel on January 21, 2014

      This looks amazing. I like the smooth movements in and out of the grass in the video as well.

      A random thought just popped up in my head. How will dialogue be presented soundwise(Obviously you're not hiring voice actors)? By that I mean to ask, what kind of sounds will you have associated with the flowing text. Will there be unique sounds associated with each character?

      Minor thing, I know, it's just a minor detail that I've appreciated in other games.

    4. Creator John Rhee on January 20, 2014

      @Helena - Thanks for the feedback. We'll keep working and will definitely be using different palettes in different parts of the game.

      @Daniel - Animating the nature assets are in the plans. We had a script to do this already but weren't getting the results we were after so we had it turned of for now. Will share once we've had a chance to tweak it a bit.

      @Endre - You can upgrade to any of the tiers available on our paypal page (http://www.codagames.com/paypal). Just pay the difference and be sure to leave a note once surveys are sent out as a reminder to us so we don't forget :)

      @Vk - Environments are sprites, characters are polygons. We'll put a video together in a future update to explain how we combine them.

    5. Creator VkBest on January 20, 2014

      sprites or polygons?

    6. Creator Andy - sinner of Original Sin ^^ on January 20, 2014

      Hi John, this update is really great, is it possible to update my pledge to next level? :-)

    7. Creator Daniel Mercy on January 19, 2014

      I've become more and more impressed by this game with each update since the beginning. The overhauls really have allowed the project to achieve a significantly higher level of beauty. I'm especially loving mother nature's animations. While static environments may be part of the art direction, are there any plans to add layers of animations for the trees, or anything regarding subtle flora and fauna dynamics in general? I don't know if it's within the overall design's range of possibilities, but I personally think the foliage being lightly shaken back and forth by the wind would be a perfect immersive touch.

      Thank you for updating us! Keep it up!

    8. Creator Helena on January 19, 2014

      Excellent new screens, music and video - I liked the scene with the main character walking through the grass. My only (minor) issues with the art would be that the colours are a bit oversaturated (IMO) and the perspective in the interior screenshot looks slightly different from the exterior ones.

    9. Creator Brett Schwartz on January 19, 2014

      Awesome update, visuals look great and that's a great music track.

    10. Creator Pogopuschel on January 19, 2014

      Great update! Wish you all the best!

    11. Creator John Rhee on January 19, 2014

      Edward, definitely aiming to get the first part out before then (and testing well before). We plan to reuse assets and sound, but will also be creating some new ones for each installment.

    12. Creator Tiernan on January 19, 2014

      Looking great. Really love that track. Also, thanks for the link to The Banner Saga, definitely going to pick that up.

    13. Creator JusticeBolt on January 19, 2014

      Seriously wow! I can't wait to see the final game! Good job. One of my most anticipated game for sure.

    14. Creator Edward T. on January 19, 2014

      Think you can get the first episode out by the end of year, John?

      By the way, for later episodes, will you be reusing assets and soundtracks from the first episodes (I mean, there's no reason not to right?)

    15. Creator John Rhee on January 19, 2014

      Thanks all!

      @Aleonymous - We're using lots of software, but Unity is the main engine the game runs on. We're also using a mix of 3rd party extensions to Unity along with the custom tools we're developing.

    16. Creator Talon Edgewater [Xulima[Bloom]Deathfire] on January 19, 2014

      Thanks for the great update.

    17. Creator Aleonymous on January 19, 2014

      Thanks! Doing great. A question -- What is this program/software you are using to "create" the game?

    18. Creator Stephen P. Suelzle on January 19, 2014

      Thanks for the update. Everything looks and sounds fantastic!

    19. Creator Sindharta on January 19, 2014

      Awesome progress, and that event editor looks really nice. Yeap, I am interested in those "how its made" videos !

    20. Creator Shadi Saber on January 19, 2014

      Wrong date on the update :-P but damn those pics!!! Looks amazing! Can't wait to play it! I might be jumping the gun but damn, Indie game of the year contender!

    21. Creator Edward T. on January 19, 2014

      Looks and sounds gorgeous! What's there not to want?

    22. Creator Dawn_ on January 19, 2014

      One of my most anticipated game T_T! Keep up the good work!

    23. Creator Neo on January 19, 2014

      Thanks for the interesting update! Nice to hear some news about the game. :)

    24. Creator Neo on January 19, 2014

      This music is AMAZING! This artwork is AMAZING! All the work - INCREDIBLE!