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Sunday, 30 June 2013

Turn-Based Tactic Game Update#4

A rather disappointing week I'm afraid. I haven't done as much as I hope for. So I'm going to say up front, no webplayer update this week, again.

Now we get that out of the way, I can talk about what have been done this week for the project. The notable things that I've been working on is the addition of different turn-based mechanic. So there are 4 different modes that will be supported. They are:

  • FactionBased - Each faction takes turn to move all unit in control. The All unit can be moved within the round. example: x-com, civilization
  • FactionBasedSingleUnit - Each faction takes turn to move. Only one unit can be moved within the turn. example: worms series
  • UnitBasedRoundCap - Each unit take turn to move regardless of the faction. The unit with the highest speed get to move first. Each unit get to move only once per round. example: king's bounty
  • UnitBasedNoCap - Each unit take turn to move regardless of the faction. The unit with the higest speed get to move first. There are no round in this mode. Unit with much higher speed will get to move much more than slower unit. It's semi-realtime-ish.

Sorry for the lack of example, I guess my lacking of experience in turn-based tactic game shows there. I hope my explanation makes up for it. If not, just wait for the webplayer demo. Reading that, you might have probably learn by now that there are facility for multiple faction. However I must say there are no plan for multiplayer just yet. But multiple AI faction is certainly an option now. 

And that's that for this week. Thanks for reading!

No just kidding, apart from the multi-faction and addition of turn mode, the persistent unit system has been done as well. User will have the option to use persistent player unit or preset unit for each scene. Say in a campaign where player will be able to bring their unit to the next level, exception can be done to certain level that a set of pre-determined unit will be used. There are option to tweak the rules for unit's ap as well. To use it for movement/attack or not and so on. So all in all, there are plenty of option that can change the mechanic of the game. Which is nice to experiment on different game design, and of course, this is shaping up to be a pretty decent framework.

Finally, I've also added in game action cam. Something like those action cam in x-com. It's pretty cool I think. But it still need quite a bit of work to be honest.

The good news is, I'll have more time to work on this project this week. So hopefully I've go more to show next week.

Sunday, 23 June 2013

Turn-Based Tactic Game Update#3

It's has been a fairly productive week. However there's nothing much to be shown. From the end user point at least (so no webplayer update this week, sorry). Thing is continue from the work I've done last week for the unit ability, I've been focusing on getting a full on customisable unit ability system working. That I'm afraid has killed many many millions of my brain cell and taken many many hours of my time in the week. But the consolation is I manage to get it working to some extent. It's not fully done but it's almost there. Just many fine details left that need sorting out. In some way, it works more or less like the ability/perk system in TDTK. However it's a lot more complicated because of the nature of the turn-based tile mechanic. The abilities can be very different from one to another. ie. some need targeting, some don't, some direct at the unit, some direct at the tile, some shoot, some don't, aoe and what not. In short, it's a bit of a nightmare. It just shows that I still have much to learn.

I've also improve the tile editing by a great deal. By adding in the facility to directly edit the tile using scene view. Basically the same thing every other tile-based editing tool use. The editor now allow changing the state of individual tile, as well as placement of unit and collectible item on the map. Following video shows just that.

Speaking of which, a small addition to the gameplay, there's now collectible on the map. These collectible would grant various bonus/buff/debuff when triggered. I haven't got the chance to really make a few examples yet but it's there. For now, there's just a basic one which heal the triggering unit.

Finally, a unit selection screen has also been added. Like every other addition this week. It's unpolished yet, just functional. For that reason, I'm not going to show it. But perhaps you can see where the base game is going at this point. So you get to select the units that you want and take them to battle. You have a limited budget so you cant take too many units. You earn points for your unit selection for the next battle and so on. I'm still working on the aspect of persistent unit through out battle. Basically very generic system like every other game. I can only say this is the case for the time being.

I guess most of this week progress are good for the project if I want to make a toolkit out of it. Something I have in mind if I'm honest. But frankly it's a bit of a chore compare to to some other thing I have in mind. I can only hope I can quickly get it done and move on.

Oh yes, just for research purpose, I've got myself king's bounty. I'm going to play it for a bit and try to get some inspiration. Let's hope I'm not going to get myself hooked.

Monday, 17 June 2013

Turn-Based Tactic Game Update#2

Another weekend passed so here's another update. I'm intend to make weekly update for and post for this project. Let's see how long I can keep this up.

So as you can probably see I've add a few more polish touches to the UI. It's mostly just there to aid the gameplay. Also I've added a few unit abilities. Basically here's the addition:
  • UI polish
  • Unit abilities:
    • AimShot (increase attack and critical chance for 1 round)
    • RapidShot (gain additional attack for 1 round)
    • Fortify (increase defend bonus in certain tile temporarily)
    • MassRepair (heal all friendly)
    • Barrage (aoe attack an area)
    • StasisField (prevent a unit from moving/attacking)
  • and other little minute details.

The unit abilities works like this. Each unit gain 1 'AP' at each turn. Each ability will cost certain 'AP' to use. Just try the new webplayer build and find out what's new. It's an early build and the game is not exactly balance but any feedback/comments is much appreciated.

'A' to autoplace unit
q and e to rotate the camera, mouse wheel to zoom
hold spacebar to show all units' HP
'Escape' to deselect unit & cancel ability

If I'm honest, not a great deal has been added from the looks of things on the surface. True is I spend quite a lot of time working on the base framework of unit ability. I'm tyring to make something like the ability/perk system in TDTK. But It's proven to be quite tricky so far due to the diverse nature of the ability in a typical turn-based tactical game. Barrage and StasisField in particular has killed many of my poor brain cell. I've to use hack here and there to make things work at this stage.

The code has been restructured a lot as well. I'm trying to give it the facility and flexibility to modding. Make life easier for me to mod and build the actual game eventually when I'm happy with the base framework. If these elements works out well enough, I might consider releasing it to AssetStore as a toolkit.

Wednesday, 12 June 2013

Turn-Based Tactic Game First Prototype

I think I've found my new favourite project. I've tons of idea how can I make this into an interesting game. It all started when I first getting my hand dirty on a hex-tile generator and a turn based system to match. It has pretty much spun out of control from there, in a good way. I find myself spending all my free time tinkering with it. So this is the early prototype in all it's glory.

As you can see, I've managed to spend more time on the earlier prototype I was working on. I manage to polish it up a little bit more, and get the AI to work. It's looking pretty decent at this point, according to a very satisfied developer. I won't lie, I'm immensely pleased about it.

However the gameplay is still a bit dry. Basically the player can only move and attack the enemies. There's a hit/miss/critical chance mechanic and that's about it.  There's no synergy between the unit, no unit or tactical ability or special attack, nothing. It will be very interesting to see how I can spice it up. And oh boy, I can't tell you how I looking forward to do just that.

The AI is also very basic this point. Each unit will just look for the nearest hostile target and move to attack it. But with currently limited gameplay, it's quite convincing none the less. If you fancy to give it a go, here's the webplayer (The game is very very basic at this point, you have been warned):

(q and e to rotate the camera, mouse wheel to zoom)

All the asset in this demo are made by myself. Except the explosion effect and the skybox. The explosion effect are part of the standard unity example asset for Shuriken ParticleSystem. The skybox is from AssetStore. The platforms are my latest asset creation, it's actually a tile set for mix and match. The texturing is still a bit under-worked at this point. I'll see if I can do more about it. I'll shed more details about it later.

It's quite unoptimised at this point, at least in graphical term. The tile are individual mesh and they have taken quite a lot of drawcall for some reason, probably due to the shader I'm using. The total drawcall hovers between 100 to 200 in run time after I run the combine mesh script on all the static environment object. It's fairly reasonable for PC I guess but not so much for mobile. Not really sure until I test it out, perhaps it will run just fine. So more thing to work on.

All in all, not bad for a less than a week work, ignoring the fact that all most of the 3D asset was made earlier. Did I say I'm very pleased with it?

Monday, 10 June 2013

Weekend Break. Sort of...

Finally a weekend where I'm not tied down to any things. So here's what happen, I took the weekend off anything that I've been working on a regular basis lately and try something new. And this is what I've made in the past 2 days.

Obviously it's a simple top down - turn based - combat system with a hex based grid. It's a rather complete prototype with basically all the gameplay feature for such system in place, pre-start unit placement, unit selection, identification of various tile to selected unit (walkable, unwalkable, hostile, friendly), unit movement/attack, information display, turn-system, etc. Unfortunately I didn't quite manage to get the AI to work yet. Otherwise it would have been a nice little game.

The grid can be generated procedurally along with the walkable and unwalkable tile. The size and area of the grid can be adjusted naturally. And AI unit can be pre-placed in the grid generation phase. I was going toward a direction where I can go for procedural generated level. The different level layout in those image, took me only seconds.

Of course, there are still plenty of rough spot that I can work on, even as a prototype. Such as AI (obviously), better placement of AI unit, more intuitive way to setup level in unity editor (currently it's quite a pain to hand place unit). I would love to further develop this can see what I can come out with. But the main focus now is the AI. as soon as I get the AI working, I'll gladly put out a little game of this.

Overall, I'm pretty pleased with it. This is the first time I try to take on a turn-based strategy game. It has been a great fun!

Friday, 7 June 2013

TDTK v2.2.2f1

A new hot fix version of TDTK (v2.2.2f1) has just went live on AssetStore. Well well, as usual, this is a usual fix that normally happen following any major update. But it's more urgent than usual because of a critical bug with the relatively new AbilitySystem. The bug almost render any addition/removal of the abilities useless. Thanks to Adam, a keen user who reported it to me, I manage to fixed it. Apart from that, I've also fixed some other issues. Not much in fact, just two precisely, all of which are ability system related.

I have also been experimenting with various possible addition. These efforts included modular building/props sets and modular tile set for construction of a more purposeful game scene, inverse TD game mode where player spawn units and guide them through hostile towers (with branching and selectable path), multiple upgrade paths and more unique passive ability for towers... Basically nothing short of either ambition and huge workload.

So far, I've only managed these as of the current submission. They are all tower related: chance to instant kill creeps with certain HP threshold, chance to by-pass shield, chance to stop shield regeneration permanently, and setting to inflict damage to shield only (no damage to HP).

In short, here's the change/update log:

  • Added new options for tower stat (instant-kill chance, shield-breaker, shield-pierce, damage-shield-only)

bug fix
  • fix a critical bug with AbilityEditor and AbilityManager
  • fix bug ability effect aoeDamage where percentage damage will always be regard as straight damage value
  • fix ability button creation error with NGUI menu

Also, I will take this chance to do a shout out to Adam, acriticalStrike, Glenn Lusk. They have all left very positive review for me on AssetStore, which I really appreciate. Same goes for others who have done the same (I'm sorry I cant mention all so I will only do the most recent 3 entry). Many many thanks indeed, I'm humble by all your feedback and comment. I'm looking forward to do what I can to live up to your expectation.