1.5 Update: Worked on side dungeons today. Managed to finish eventing the old deserted temple and the scene with the dragon if you run into it. Then, I moved on to eventng an old, deserted fire cave. I'd drawn up the map months ago, so it was just a matter of touch up work, and placing the monsters and treasures, which is now down.
And with that, let's see how the monthly goals are coming along:
-Go back and fix up Chapters 3 and 4 dialogue errors. I noticed a few when doing my speed run, so might want to fix those up. (bonus) Fix Chapter 5 as well.
-Add the couple missing dialogue sequences to Chapters 3 and 4.
-Fix the Character sequences for Chapters 1 and 2 to match the plot (most of them I've had in the game since 2014, and never updated).
-Write the Chapter 3 character sequences. (bonus) Write the Chapter 4 character sequences.
-Finish my lore books. I've written about half of them already, got the last half to go.
-Repopulate the NPC's in the towns of Aurora and Icetop Fortress, and add the sidequests for those towns as well. (bonus) Silas Rest as well. Icetop Fortress done.
-Fix the mapping errors in Tall Oak (that map is still a placeholder).
-Map 2 of the bonus dungeons. These are completely optional areas for the party to explore (and occasionally where they need to go to finish a side quest).Done, mapped and evented the Ice Temple and the Fire Caves.
-And finally, if I still got time left, map one of the Chapter 9 side areas the party is *supposed* to go to (they were told to go there at the start of the Chapter, but the player can ignore that advice if they wish) and get items that will make the final fight so much easier.
I started working on my project again after a 6 month hiatus due to... family matters...
It's always so hard going back to something I had put a ton of work into, because I get so confused looking at the files and I don't really remember where I left off. But instead of looking over what I already did I decided to start working on the parts I hadn't gotten around to yet.
So... I'm tackling the NPC AI system, something that has stumped me for the entire dev process. The graphics for my game are nowhere near done, so I opened an empty project and made a very basic, minified RTP version of my game's world. So far I got a test character who can move from map to map (finding the right exit and walking across connected maps until they reach their destination), depending on where I tell them to go.
The next step is having the character "think" and decide where to go at random and hooking that up to the time system... then refining that into making the decision process based on utility needs (hunger and social) and a schedule (work and sleep) so it's not-so-random, but not totally predictable what they are going to do either. My January goal is to have at least one character that can function like that.
My game has around 45 characters total, with individual quirks and habits, so it will be interesting to see how it comes together. tbh I'm expecting this to be buggy as hell (my calculations were once slightly off with the mood system, and it caused my test character to become such a neurotic mess that he never recovered, lol), so it's going to take a loooot of work and many hours of testing. If it completely breaks down I may have to revert to rigid schedules like in the Harvest Moon games, but it would defeat the point of my experiment so I hope it won't.
@bgillisp It's evented using variables, switches, and hidden items along with some plugin help to deal with choices. My game concept allows the player quite a bit of freedom while the story goes on whether the player is an active part or not. (Done using a calendar system with switches and variables determining how the next major part plays out if player not involved) The Keyword system was designed to allow the player to pursue and interact instead of pages for every posiible iteration that plays out. With all the different ways to impact factions, relationships, and personality systems, I want to avoid the Fable effect on simple variable systems breaking immersion.
So this morning I opened up my project, felt pure disgust at the thing, made another autotile (so many autotiles!) and realized that if I kept going any further I was going to hate the set and completely burn out. So I closed everything and quit working on the set for the day. Washed dishes instead. Did too much too fast I guess. You can't keep up a sprinting pace in a marathon after all. So I'm going to take a breather and go at it with a more reasonable goal. I think getting the interior tiles finished this month is much more reasonable. I'll be starting on it next week. I think tomorrow I'll try to pixel a fainting couch that I promised someone I'd make.
@Kes Hmm, that's a possibility. I've tried doing two projects at once before though and it tends to make me unable to focus. Maybe I just need to try longer periods between shifting. Two days on two off perhaps? It's worth experimenting with.
@Warboss74 Welcome to crazy town! I hope you're productive!
@bgillisp So, no end goals just one foot in front of the other? Hmm. I actually get pretty lazy if I do it that way. I always break it down into smaller goals but the bigger goals drive me better.
@noctiluca I hope you find your groove again. Working on a separate system that you hadn't started yet seems like a good way to ease back in. I hate trying to pick up projects like that, it's hard not to just start over sometimes.
Aaaaah. I don't think that would work in this case. There's not a whole lot of difference in working on the different parts of a tileset, not enough to prevent burnout anyway. I guess I could map or work more on the sales page, but that's actually mostly done.
@Zeriab : Have fun with all of your mouse scripts.
@bgillisp : Dragon's cave ? I hope there you can pick up the gold it uses as nest, for once.
@Sharm : Indeed this will depend on the goals you want to reach. Something that you judge unproductive might appear very productive to us. Don't forget that the human body and mind have some limits, so be careful to not overexert yourself, or else, you'll become less efficient.
@Kes (ksjp17) : I don't remember if there is a default state for Stun. If so, create another one yourself, it might be more efficient. As for the database, I fill it little by little as soon as I need new elements.
@Everyone else : Good luck for your goals !
My update :
I've released v2.16 of my game, since I was able to adapt the training room and finish all variations of the secondary missions. Yeah \o/.
Now, I've started working on mission XIX, where we go to an ancient temple of the dragon clan. There were no dragon statues that I wanted in the default RTP, so I braced myself and drew one from scratch. So... here is the entrance of the temple, with the dragon statues :
I might be able to finish mission XIX by the end of the month if I'm somehow left in peace IRL
On the planning mode with what "arts" I will make for the remaining 4 skills in my game, as well as their passive param bonuses... I'm planning something like
Snipe - focus on weakening the enemy by hitting specific points in the enemy. Still thinking of the bonus
Shower - this would be some kinda aoe focus like Swing but I still don't how to make it different or maybe focus on skills that has a chance to delay enemies or make them more susceptible to delays. As such I am also still thinking of the bonus
Shadow - quick arts and making yourself harder to hit. Passive bonus is increase AGI and maybe I can add bonus EVA
Reap - focus on single target burst damage (but I need to make it different from Crush which focuses on slow single target burst damage), maybe I'd make the damage less than Crush but with faster action speed. Passive bonus is % CRI per level and some ATK maybe (gonna remove ATK bonus if the CRI bonus proves to be way too strong)
The changes I make to the skills will probably also make me need to modify their Drive Aura bonuses and their Drive Finishers... So it's still a big big work.. I need to finish all of this setup of the playable characters before I can proceed with the story of the game.
@AceOfAces_Mod: If it makes you feel better, I just backed up my game and the date I put on the backup was 2016.
@noctiluca: Sounds interesting. Are you trying to make a sims like game or something?
@Warboss74: Sounds interesting. I was originally going to try something like that, but decided to stick to a linear story for the first game. Maybe next project?
@Sharm: Oh, there's still an end goal. It's just a matter of making sure to tackle something on the list though, instead of random mish-mashes. Hope the day off helps productivity!
@Schlangan: This one has no gold, sorry. Instead, it honestly just wants peace and quiet, and as long as you leave it be, it leaves you be.
@Engr. Adiktuzmiko: Does it all have to be made though? I've found that having a basic shell worked for me, and now I'm fine tuning the ones that were either out of balance or just placeholders. Seems to have worked.
@MiniTitan: You could do what I did and use a sprite for your icon. Though mine I commissioned from my artist, but you might find one in the resources section that would work?
1.6 Update: Decided to work on the Tower of Elyon today, even though I don't have any more side dungeons to do for my monthly goals. But, I knew what I wanted to put there and figured might as well do it before I forget.
Anyways, the Tower of Elyon is a sealed tower that was sealed about 450 years ago, but the seal goes down late in the game. What mysteries shall we find in this tower? Also, it was a slightly different place for me to design, as it has very few monsters (just a few slimes that slipped in over time via cracks), so it is more solving puzzles and figuring out how to unlock areas of the tower. Still, was interesting to make something like this for a change.
No specific goals for this January, besides of not wasting any time!
For 2017 - there's so much art I gotta do for the game that it's scaring me. Planing to release a game demo. Seriously, can't wait for that. Although I don't wan't to pressure myself into putting out the complete game this year - who knows, anything can happen.
@Kes: I have actually been taking a look at status menu plugins on these forums and tried out two different ones. The main problem is that I want to show a variable for each character in the status screen, which is something most plugins can't do (at least without the use of converting the variable to a stat with another plugin which... seems troublesome, in all honesty). I might have figured a way to do that and show a large picture of the character in the screen, though; ideally I'd also like to have a separate window/tab for the character profile and a way to add text mid-game, but that's a bit too advanced for my current skills.
@noctiluca: Poor test character. A mood system sounds interesting in any case: I hope we can hear more of it some day later either in this thread or the game's own thread.
So far, my progress has mostly focused on honing the dialogue based on the story notes I have written down by hand. While writing, I realised that all the people in town 1 didn't move or update their dialogue between the first evening and the day after. Now, the fishermen can be found in the tavern on the first evening and on the beach afterwards, and shops are initially closed (because the sun is starting to set when the player arrives to the town and they can't leave it before the next day anyway). Now the town should feel a bit more alive, and the player also has chance to find out a bit more about the characters.
The fact that I'm mostly using RTP graphics is starting to bother me, though. I think that I should try to finish the character template soonish so I can start editing and creating tiles which match the style.
@M.I.A. Now that makes more sense! In terms of organization I think I have quite a good database with everything grouped logically together and lots of slots left between categories so that I can add as I go along. This time, though, I'm eyeing my skills tab with some unease. I have skills listed under the particular character, and there's one who is starting to look a bit 'tight' - not because she has lots more skills than anyone else, but because of the need to add actions to a skill at different levels.
@bgillisp Mmm, now how about a pacifist dragon? It simply won't fight you. But you've got to find a way to get it to move so that you can reach X which is behind it. The Tower of Elyon sounds like a nice change of pace for the player too.
@noctiluca That sounds a very interesting project, though a colossal amount of work for 45 characters. Presumably most of the working elements/system can be carried over from one to the other, with just a few aspects needing individual work - or do you have to calculate the whole thing from scratch each time?
@Schlangan It was creating a custom Stun state that turned out to be the problem. I didn't want to use the default for various reasons, so made this new one. Then, when it came to giving State Resist I absentmindedly gave it resistance to the default version, not the custom version. Yeah, something as simple as that cost me hours. Congrats on releasing the new version. I do like your dragon statues, but there is something that bothers me. The actual bit of the plinth that the statue stands on: on the right side (as we look at it) I can see the edge go back and start turning so I've got a good sense of depth there. On the left side, however, it doesn't do that, so the whole thing now feels lop-sided or maybe 'flat' on that side.
@Punamaagi I like it when there are big changes like that, though I know from my own experience that it can be a lot of work.
As I mentioned to Schlangan, the cause of my problem of State Resist not working was incredibly simple. Learn from my pain, friends. Still working on making the boss that caused all the angst almost (but not quite) impossible to do when you first have the opportunity to fight it, and challenging if you go to get the exp and gear first. I can beat the boss at the lower level every time, but obviously I have huge advantages that the player doesn't have in terms of knowledge. What with class choices and stat distribution by the player it is very hard to predict what the average player's party will be like. I don't think I will do that combination again - one or the other, but not both. To give myself a break, I started to event a cut scene.
@bgillisp - I don't mean finalized, but yes they need to be made, else I won't even be able to test them to do fine tuning. I find it preferable to focus on one thing first before moving on to the next, so I want all these setup of actors done before I move to the story and the enemies.
@ptimiya: If your demo is on here, why not just release it with placeholder art? I did that while getting feedback on the gameplay. Though I did get a few comments of why is one character in a maid outfit?
@Punamaagi: Just try to not bog yourself down with too much dialogue between every event.
@Kes: The dragon is actually a good source for learning some history. I didn't put anything else there, so it is more for exploring players to learn a little lore, if they are curious.
1.7 Update: Ever have one of those days where RPGMaker is open for 3 hours and all you do is place 2 treasure chests? Yep, that was me today so far. I'm going to take the hint and do something else for a day.
The Loco-Motion song pre-dates the dance. Meaning the lyrics are kinda misleading. "Everybody's doing a brand new dance now"... No they weren't, you just used peer pressure to trick everyone into going along with it.