A small break — March 2, 2017

A small break

Hey there,

if you guys haven’t noticed yet, for the past week or two our posts have been pretty slow.

We had a huge holiday around here and we used the time to spend with our families, but at the same time we have some contracts in our hands that are demanding a lot of our time. As we don’t get sufficient money from this project yet, we still have to work it on our free time between projects.

We will have things coming back to normality in a few days!

Cheers!

Arknostik

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Plenty of more skills to come — February 20, 2017

Plenty of more skills to come

To start the week I did some work at another skill. A spin attack  that is going to be devastating for foes in an area around our warrior, this is focused on PvE and we’ll combine this skill with some On-hit effects to change its behavior in the future. I’m still going to prototype a bunch of other skills so we can get them into a test environment. We want to have as many skills as possible now so when we start working on other characters we can see what works for PvP and what doesn’t, as we don’t want a class to be always better than another, limiting skills may be a good place to start when balancing starts.

Graphics

I’ve also decided to do some different stuff regarding graphics. It’s important for me to not focus only on the character because I feel that there is still a lot of things that still needs to be done, but creating a start map opens a lot of doors for marketing, showcase, and getting a grasp of what it is that we’re going to accomplish with this game.

For that, I’m going to assemble a huge board on Pinterest (or a big number of boards) with references for biomes, villages, assets, materials. But,  the first thing I’ve worked on was actually a water shader. I’ve experimented a lot in here, with pixelated textures, cartoon-like shaders, colors, different values for opacity, and the use of techniques to simulate refraction, reflections, transparency, waves… Take a look of where I am right now:

The first image is how the water behaves when it is deep. On the second one, I’ve put a placeholder landscape to show how the shader works when the water is shallow. You can see we have some good reflections and wave movement. The waves are still a bit messy but I’ll be able to work on a feature to paint river-flows somewhere in the future.

This realist look may diverge a little bit from what we were trying to achieve at first, but it looks so good that it made me think about the combination of all elements and everything comes together nicely (in my head).

Networking

We’ve also started to work on the replications of everything, we are setting up a dedicated server and will be working with our combat system (gameplay + animations) over the next couple of weeks. By the end of this month, I think we’ll have a bunch of cool stuff that are going to be ready for testing and we may be able to invite people to test with us!

Cheers,
Arknostik!

Working on combat — February 16, 2017

Working on combat

We’ve started implementing skills and adding some effects to help us visualize the combat. For the next week, we’re going to stress out our skills and combat system, experimenting with a lot of values and animations to start focusing on closing the combat rules and interactions. This is needed so we can start working on the networking of these features to adjust our system to the latency world of networking.

leapingBut Hey, it is already fun as hell to leap around blocks.

Unfortunately we hit a step-back this week, one of our members (Responsible for servers and security) has lost his PC due to a HD failure, so we’re going to need more time to actually have our world working with networking as we’d like. But that’s not a problem as we’re on a pretty early stage and we can get the basics working pretty fast.

As soon as we start stressing this system out, I’ll be able to (and probably Dertzack as well) start working on some assets and map, so we can start building our visual identity of the game. We already have all of our goals regarding graphics established so I hope we can achieve them fast.

Cheers,

Arknostik

Just a little bit of what’s to come — February 13, 2017

Just a little bit of what’s to come

As I had mentioned in our previous milestone post, I’ve been working with movement and combat for the past week.

And here is a just the tip of what is to come. The movement (start/stop animation) still needs to be polished, as I was doing a lot of clips and trying to figure out what I was going to do with all of them some details about blends and syncs with characters’ speed are still missing. But as you can see, the movement direction is going to be really influenced by the player’s attacks and spells/skills and that is a core mechanic for our combat system, it resembles a lot the movements systems used in MOBAS, where your character turns to match a skill being cast. I’ve also created a simple turn in place mechanic for the torso and head, just as an aesthetics thing.

I’ve integrated all the assets done by Dertzack so far into the game and the player can equip them already. The two items in this GIF are the Viking Shield and the One Handed Axe.

The movement so far is really responsible and the attacks will be combined with some weapon trails and effects to give more amplitude to the movements and to bring an extra life to the game.

Stay tuned for our next posts because we will reveal more from our combat and movement system.

Cheers!

Arknostik

Milestone #1 – We have accomplished a couple of things! — February 12, 2017

Milestone #1 – We have accomplished a couple of things!

      Since the beginning, we’ve decided that we would work only with our warrior, until we have a lot of stuff figured it out. So for the past two weeks we were still trying to figure out how the animations would be, regarding to movement and combat. And we have tried a LOT of things. I’ve created almost 20 animation clips only for movement, with sideways movement, backwards, rotations in place, sprints and walks (with or without slopes and angles), but as I started to assemble everything together in the engine, a bunch of problems started to reveal themselves and the movement was not as we would like it to be. We actually found that we were doing TOO MUCH to make only the character move and we were spending a lot of time experimenting different blends, combinations of clips, and working on a lot of movement mechanics that didn’t add anything to gameplay, just made a lot more complicated to create things fast. So I’ve decided to let everything go and rethink all the character’s movement and gameplay.

      Forget about all that 50 animation clips for a character, things like these require a LOT of knowledge, time and resources, and we want to do this quickly without having to spend a lot of time in just one thing in this project, we have a small team, working a few hours per day and there is always going to be something to improve. So we’ve gathered a bunch of references of movements from a lot of different titles, like Diablo, Witcher, Gauntlet, and decided to see what would fit well into the gameplay style we want. And just like that, we quickly had all of our movement done, without needing a lot of clips and it feels just awesome.

      And that was our first goal: Have our character running everywhere… it just feels great and we’re going to show that as soon as we have our combat animations integrated.

combat      And yeah, COMBAT! Over the weekend, we’ve chatted about our combat system and how we want things to be different from MMORPGS (with those target systems and 500 different spells that comes together to create a 1-shot combo). So we’ve decided to test out the basics, including basic attacks and dodges… In this next week you should be able to see some of that stuff in-game.

      I’ve finished a couple of combat animations, as you can see from the GIF above, I’ve created this combo chain, and started other ones as well so we can prototype our combat.

Items

      For the past week, Dertzack has been creating some weapons for our character, and if you haven’t seen them yet, go check it out on his posts, because he also describes how he is creating these assets. The goal here is for him to practice creating 3D assets, texturing, and keeping a low-poly count on all of them, to harmonize with our whole design. Expect a lot more from him.

We’ll also be working with clothes and armors soon, so follow our posts to see when we start releasing those contents.

Gameplay

      We have started working on our first Mob AI, but these are yet to be improved in our whole game concept. Because we’re focusing on how our combat is going to be, we need that to be as clear as possible (and also tested with some ping variety) so we can start designing how the combats with monsters are going to be. We do not want to create a game where you can just destroy everything with 1 spell and kill 10 Goblings with one hit, we want the players to be aware that they have resources to spend on their battles and that missing a skill/spell/action, can be really harmful, so do not expect 1 quest to kill 10 chickens that are just lying around waiting to be killed.

      We’ve also started working on the math part of battle, experience, and training skills. We are trying to create a system that resembles Tibia and Ultima Online, that enables players to train and battle a lot without knowing exactly if they are going to beat one player only by looking at his level, as the level won’t be that ridiculous scaling things that makes a level 50 kill a level 40 with 2 hits and one spell, or tank 100 level 10 because he has 1000x more hp than them combined.

      As for our servers, we haven’t worked on that a lot, as our member that is creating that part is having troubles with his computer, but we’re still trying to have a bunch of players running naked in a blank map, killing each other with basic attacks by the end of next week (it all depends on how much we can work on this project).

What’s next?

      The first goal for the next couple of weeks is to fully develop our combat skills, movement, animation, and the basics of the math regarding the leveling system. We will also work to have a server running in the US Region, so we can test the combat gameplay in a real environment and start working on a map that resembles a battle arena inside a village, so we can have something presentable for our followers.

How can I help?

      Some people started asking us how can they help this project. We are going to create a patreon in the near-future. With a patreon, we believe that we’ll be able to give our followers a lot of things that can improve our work and integrate our workflow with players since the beginning. We’ve also created a paypal donation button that you can donate any amount to help us. You can do that by going to the DONATE page in our header or clicking here:

This is going to be it for now, but stay tuned because things are starting to get interesting!

Cheers,

Arknostik

Animations and Networking — February 6, 2017

Animations and Networking

We haven’t worked a lot on the weekend, but we’ve managed to start doing some heavy stuff now.

I’ve started working on all of our animations for the warrior, which includes Idles for In-combat and out of combat, a Sprint, Sprint transitions (start, finish,leans) that we can use for blending with our characters’ directions.

At the same time, we have now a new member that has started working on some items, like blades and shields. As soon as we have a cool collection, we’ll post some nice screenshots.

The main feature we’ve started working is the networking. We want to create an Online RPG (but probably not a Massive one), meaning that a couple of hundred players we’ll be able to fight( with a cool combat system that we’re working on that requires skill and good ping), loot and do quests building awesome adventures on a persistent world (for some things). We have started to code our networking, dedicated servers and databases. They are really at their initial states but we also have a new member working fully with these stuff (and security).

For the rest of the week we should have tons of animations for our warrior, the full controller with some awesome blends and probably attacks with their animations as well, and some netcode already working!

Stay tuned for more!

Cheers,

Arknostik

Rigging and animating — February 2, 2017

Rigging and animating

So I’ve finished the rigging process of our Warrior and created some pants and boots to attach via game code to check if the skinning process went fine. After a couple of fixes we now have a fully rigged character ready to be animated!

This gif was made with some default animations that were re-targeted to our character, and the results were amazing. Tomorrow I’ll be working on our first animations.

Cheers,

Arknostik

Starting the graphics! — February 1, 2017

Starting the graphics!

So, we have decided to start creating our graphics. The first thing we have in mind is that we have few resources and want to create this as fast as we can without having bad and poorly made graphics. We want things to be concise despite the amount of detail we put into our models.

So here is our first character, this is going to be the base mesh for our warrior. Players we’ll be able to change colors/hair mesh and some of that cosmetic stuff in the future, but for now we just want to have our first character done.

We chose to get way low poly for some reasons:

  1. We don’t want to spend a LOT of time creating heavily detailed characters.
  2. We want to create an unique art style in our RPG
  3. The camera is far enough from the player so that this art type becomes way more interesting
  4. We want to toy around with some awesome animations and lighter models tend to be easier to experiment with.

One thing to be aware of is that equipment will be attached to characters, so the current textures I am working on are merely placeholders.

Cheers!

Arknostik

Welcome — January 31, 2017

Welcome

Welcome!

We want to do this fast, so we’ve decided to use WordPress to speed things up a bit so we won’t need to create a blog from scratch.

We currently starting an Indie Games Studio and we decided to create a little side project to work on our free time and test/study/create things that are not on our daily activities.

We’ll be posting our ideas and progress daily here, so tag along to get an idea of what we’re building.

 

Cheers!