We are BACK!
We hope everyone had great holidays like we did. One of the things we did during the holidays was QA. We played through our game multiple times and reported bugs. We took this step, so when the team comes in they are ready to hit the ground running and start polishing the game.
Going First Person
This was a very last minute pivot of deciding to go first person with our camera. It came out of curiosity of what the game would be like to play in first person. Testing it out we found out that it actually is better than a third person camera for our intended experience. From a production standpoint, since we have only one animator, going first person reduces a lot of character animations. Thus, giving him more time to focus on the Riven. From a design standpoint, it allows to provide a more immersive and awe inspiring gameplay. It bolsters all our design pillars even more. From a technical standpoint, it helps us solve a lot of readability problems of getting the spear to work visually, with such high paced and agile movement.
It definitely caused a small trickle effect where, the level design had to be changed hugely. We are still trying to find what other things it might affect, are there other design decisions or features that need to be revisited due to this change. Some questions still remain unanswered and we are hard at work to find the answers to them.
Our alpha is on 11/27/2018. The alpha goals agreed upon are as follows:
1. White box level (tutorial + arena)
2. Player mechanics polish
3. Visual feedback and indicators for hard light and glide mechanic
4. Riven movement AI
5. Riven behavior AI
6. Attacking weak points and bringing down Riven.
Design Pivot - Core Player Mechanic
After not reaching our goals for the grappling mechanic, we had to consider our steps going forward. It was time to have that crucial conversation to analyze if grappling was even possible at this point. Having a chat with designers and engineers we concluded at this point we need more time than we have to polish grappling. Hence, we pulled the rip cord on grappling.
The next challenge was to replace it with a mechanic that would still align with our design pillars, fit in our development cycle with the resources and time we have. This is a time where we turned our production problem into a design problem and thus the mechanic "HARD LIGHT" was birthed.
Hard Light: This mechanic allows the player their primary movement ability, their offensive mechanic, and their defensive ability all wrapped into a convenient package. By pressing right trigger. a spear of light shoots forward from the player. What the spear hits determines how it functions.
- If the spear hits a wall or stationary object, the player uses the spear to stick to the surface. Releasing the right trigger will cause the player to leap off the spear in the direction they are pointing. This can be chained to move quickly throughout the level.
- If the spear hits as destructible object, the spear simple destroys or damages the object.
- If the spear hits a projectile, the player latches onto the projectile and goes into an aim mode. Releasing the right trigger will fling the projectile in the direction the player is aiming. And, the player will leap in the opposite direction the projectile is flying.