End of Week 3

Last Friday we had our first internal deadline, which was to have a playable prototype, as we had this in only a few days this deadline was a success for us. This week we have been working towards our internal ALPHA which we have set Friday next week, at the point that we are now it seems as if we will be able to meet it without any bigger issues. IMG_1886 The coders are coming along really well, they have created functional spell systems – the player can equip different spells which they can use while playing – a functional inventory with a set of placeholder items which can be equipped and that work ingame as well as all menus of the game (complete with fancy programmer art). Something that they will need to iterate upon is the camera, it is not working perfectly with the controls yet and we need to experiment with the height and zoom of the camera to get the feeling that the player is a small character facing an enormous boss in a grand hall.

Lighting Test by Environmental Artist

All of the environmental objects exist in some form, they have low-poly meshes and various levels of polished high-polys although we have not yet started with texturing. At the moment there are a lot of stone tiles being worked and reworked in Z-brush by the poor artist who might never want to see another stone in his life.

Quick Skin and Base Rig Animated Within 3DS Max

The characters are slowly getting back on schedule it seems, although a lot of work still needs to be done. The boss character’s body still needs some touching up in z-brush, hopefully it will be complete before end of Monday. The player character’s high-poly mesh of the body and boots is complete and the base mesh has been tested with a quick skinning and base rig, which were done this week within the schedule. The high-poly meshes of the player character’s hair and both characters’ armour pieces are still to be done although the next step will be to create a low poly mesh that can be tested with the base meshes of the armours so that we can test if they work before doing the high-polys. IMG_1887

In the design department the Game Design Document is still being developed, the biggest change this week though, is that we have completely redesigned our combo point and spell system to create a more interesting gameplay that fits the world and theme of the game.

Wednesday Update

It is the middle of the second week, on the code side of the project the prototype is really starting to shape up. There is one playable character, one NPC that attacks the player if they come close and a basic UI that shows stats. As said in the last post, the character is also able to cast a few spells and the same is now true for the NPC. Apart from that we have basic menus in progress, for instance a main and an ingame menu.

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The coders have also continued working on the level, working closely with the environmental artist to place the assets and understand the design correctly.

In the design department the Game Design Document is being developed and is now close to completion of the first draft that will need to be handed in at the end of this week.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

The artists are getting well on their way with the character meshes, the very first base meshes are complete and have been taken into z-brush. This might be a critical point due to two of the three artists have never used the program before, it is something that we decided that we wanted to test anyways as we thought it might make a massive difference on the quality of the textures later. The plan B would be to complete the low-poly meshes in 3DS Max before handpainting all textures.

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All environmental base meshes are complete and have been sent to the coders for them to test in Unity. The environmental artist has now moved on to creating high-polys in z-brush which will be used to create textures and final meshes later.

Concepts Nearly Done

Today most of the concepts and turnarounds were completed, with the exception of weapons that are nearly done but still need another look at them. This meant that the artists were able to start working on the base meshes for the main character and level. The boss character will need to be started tomorrow, this was postponed due to one artist being ill.

Coloured version of Main Character – Tamarrion

The general size and layout of the level has been set within 3Ds Max, and the assets to go in them are in development. At the moment we have basic pillars which will form a path down the room and offer the player shelter from AoE attacks.

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Early version of pillar

Hopefully the base mesh of the main character will be complete tomorrow, if not, the day after. The boss character will also need to be started tomorrow.

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Early version of Base Mesh

The designer has been busy working with the programmers and on the design documents and have at this point finished another two, in total five sections.

The programmers have continued working on attacking and have started working on implementing spells. At this point the spells give the player the ability to cast a projectile spell and a heal spell.

End of Week One

The first week of development is now at an end, some of us came into the office today for a casual day of work even though it is a holiday. Although it was very relaxed, with visitors coming by to have a look and some playing games occurred, we managed to get some things done.

The designer is currently working on the design documents and have at this point finished three sections of it. After some discussions between programmers and the designer it was decided that they will start working on a very simple UI even though it is far ahead of schedule. This decision was based on the designer feeling it would be easier to figure out how the fights in the game would work. The final versions of the UI is left on their original deadlines though, as other elements are far more important for gameplay.

The coders are getting well on their way with their prototype, using unity seems to make their work very fast and easy. They have implemented a functional camera (still in need of balancing), a character that can move and attack as well as a NPC with basic stats. They did find something that they did not quite expect today though, when they were testing attacking which they had been working on today they found this happening.

The most OP boss ever! Attack and he multiplies!

The artists are a bit behind schedule, although they are well on their way with the concept art, it would have been optimal to actually start producing assets in 3D this week. The concept art of the level is pretty much finished and has base colours which might need to be reworked slightly to match it with the characters, the artist in charge of that is currently working on important details for the level.

The turnaround for the boss character is getting there but still has some issues left to be resolved. The biggest problem at this stage has been that he is looking to slender, needing more muscle definition to make him look like a big, heavy and dangerous character, and his posture being too straight which would deform the mesh in an undesirable way when animating.

The turnaround of the main character was completed today, there is still room for additional cleaning but at this point it is not necessary to spend more time on it, the only reason for doing that would be for promotional purposes. We also started playing around a bit with her colour scheme, it has the basics down but is still in need of additional work.

Turnaround of Main Character

Overall we are happy with what we have achieved during this week. The art is a bit worrying as we need to get it finished ASAP so that we can start with models, there is still concept art for weapons to do as well. We have had only three full days of proper work this week though and it is very important to get the concepts right. If we step it up next week we will hopefully get back on track before long.

Almost Out of Cookies

Today was our second day in the office and we are almost out of cookies.

We did however get our keyboards and extra monitors, now we only need more sockets so that we can plug them all in and we will be completely set up!

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Our designer was feeling better today and managed to get himself down to the office to go through what we have done so far and start working on the Game Design Documents.

The coders have continued working on the camera, which seems to be something that is quite tricky but very important to get right. They have also started working on character stats and Boss Activation (when the player reaches a certain point the boss will be activated and start attacking).

The artists have been busy continuing on the Concept Art and are starting to be well on their way. We are still hoping that the base meshes will be started this week, which means that the turnarounds must be finished by the end of the day tomorrow. If necessary, more time will be spent on this as it is the foundation of the entire game.

We also took some time to go and listen to some of the pitches of our classmates hoping to get their projects greenlighted as we find it interesting to see what the other groups are up to.

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