Tuesday, August 9, 2016

Hammer devlog 36

Anyone paying attention to this devlog may have noticed that I've stopped being as good about updating it as I was. Well, uh, when I started this project it was just "something to do a devlog for." As is, this is a game I'm actually looking to make and to release. Unfortunately, that does mean I'm reflexively going to hold my cards closer to my chest - if I'm looking to create moments and sequences that have specific effects on players experiencing them for the first time, I'm going to be somewhat more timid about talking about exactly what I'm doing there. Sorry! I'll still try to keep a decent flow together, but odds are the devlog's gonna get increasingly high-level and detached from finer design points.

Anyway, though: this is just a technical thing, so that's not a problem that we really care about.

I hacked animated tiles into the off-the-shelf tilemap class I was using. Basically, I can set a specific tile ID to represent an animation, and give it references to other tiles in the tileset that it'll cycle through at a predetermined interval. Nothing fancy, but it's something that'll let me do a lot of really cool things with environmental details, background effects, etc. What you're seeing here is just a floor that cycles through some random wall tiles, lol - but the feature is in place and it works great, which is the important thing. If I want, say, animated water tiles now: I specify the way the water tiles animate, and then I just lay those down as part of the tilemap and they do their thing.

You can also see some other things - the least visible (but most notable) is the player movement, which is a little faster, more responsive, and feels a lot nicer in combat scenarios. TBH I'm probably going to have to set a deadline after which I can't touch that, lol. Otherwise: gonna be pushing git commits five days from launch with the same "character movement is less terrible" commit message I've used way too many times already. But getting that right is really important, so I'm more than willing to go back and try to massage it into something nicer as often as is necessary, right now.

Also visible: the energy meter is gone. I'm still prototyping the mechanic that you see there, and I'm not really entirely happy with the way it works right now. When I am, you'll see a detailed explanation of what the hell that meter is and how it works.