Week of July 24, 2011
Mellowed out a bit this week. A few minor updates, but I’m not gonna bother with bullet points. Basically, I blocked in some maps, so I can start moving on making towns and story stuff. I made it so that, when you’re not locked onto an enemy, you still stationary when you attack, which lends to a more defensive style of play. It also removed a problem where you could just dash everywhere, which was faster than walking. I’m messing around with AI pathfinding, which is almost always a bitch. Made a huge breakthrough in NPC AI, though, and now know pretty much exactly how I’m going to incorporate towns at the level of depth I was wanting. Also some other stuff, like death penalties and what-not. And I planned more of the story and changed it up a bit. Guess I’ll talk about that.
Originally, the story would have a firm time limit. 25 real-time hours, and the world ends. The only way to avoid it would be to go back in time, which wasn’t actually a guarantee. Maybe this’ll recall Majora’s Mask for a few people. Basically, imagine if you had enough time to actually beat the game in one cycle, and getting the Ocarina of Time that let you rewind and start a new cycle was a long, time-consuming sidequest. Kind of neat, but it didn’t fit with the game’s themes as much as I’d planned.
Now there’s a growing corruption that affects basically everything in the game’s world. It harms the player, damages the towns, and makes enemies stronger and harder to defeat. At a critical level of corruption, the world will die, accompanied by a certain critical event. It won’t be a surprise if it happens. The ‘time rewind’ deal stays in effect, but the player can do a bunch of things that slow the rate of corruption and set it back a bit… though it will eventually become ‘terminal’.
This, I think, makes it more than a timer to stress over. For one, there’s no actual timer – the corruption gradually gets worse, and the player will eventually have to take notice, but it’s not as glaring as ‘6 HOURS UNTIL GAME OVER’. The player can also pull the world back from destruction at any point before it ends, and there’s plenty of warning before it becomes impossible to save, barring the completion of some ultimate goal.
So yeah, that’s just one thing I spent a while figuring out. I’ve been playing some other games, watching Let’s Plays, and generally spending some time thinking about what to do with this thing. The combat can’t really be improved that much. Though I did just fix some enemy collision detection stuff, and it still not perfect. That’ll be ironed out easily, though.