I tried to make this work through the UI system at first, and almost got there too, but it was a square instead of a circle. To make it a circle, first I tried using a custom shader with a mask texture, and I couldn’t get that to work. Then I tried putting the map texture on a mesh and rendering that to a texture and showing that in the UI, I couldn’t get that to work either. So this is a mesh that’s attached to the camera in world space.
One cool thing about this solution is that I can make the minimap receive in-game lighting. Maybe I’ll add a decorative rim or something to it and add lighting to that without adding lighting to the map texture. Maybe put the “N” (for north) on the decorative model instead of in the generated texture like it is now.
I’ve been doing a lot of behind the scenes work recently. I rewrote the dialogue system so it doesn’t have to worry about networking and now it’s way easier to create new dialogue. I started working on sound effects, which are terrible right now but that’s the first step toward awesome sounds. I rewrote a big chunk of the levels / rooms system so that it’s now possible to have tons and tons of different rooms in the world, so now every single building has an interior that you can enter.
But anyway, here’s something that’s nice to look at! Bad guys go poof and drop a pickup.
I decided that the game isn’t going to have online multiplayer. It was a tough call for me because I was having fun working on the feature, and it was pretty much working, and I was feeling good about doing well at a tough engineering challenge. But I decided that from a production standpoint I need to focus my time where it really counts, and the way the game is shaping up it fells like the single player experience is really the heart of it. If this thing is going to succeed I need to focus on cutting out things I don’t need and making the remaining parts as polished as I can.
So anyway, here’s a new action for the player! If you’re targeting an enemy the roll will move you in a circle around the enemy, and while you’re rolling you’re invulnerable.
I’m much happier with this model than with the one I did yesterday. I think I’m going to finish the animations for this guy and get him in the game, and then not worry about it anymore for now.
I’ve also turned on Unity’s toon shader. I’m not totally sure about that but I’m going to keep it in for now and see how it feels.
Fun fact, the hair is actually a separate object from the head (he’s bald underneath), which means in the future I can swap it out for different hairstyles, hats, helmets, or whatever.
The player model has been super placeholder so far, so I thought I’d take a shot at improving it. I think I actually went too far in the other direction of too much fidelity, I’m going to try to find something in between.
If you get past a certain threshold of realism, you start to run up against players’ expectations of really good realism. By staying farther away from realism you can make decisions based on aesthetics and gameplay without having to spend time worrying about realism.
For one thing I’m not a good enough modeler to compete on realism, and for another even if I were good enough it would take too much time to do that when I already have a million other things to work on.
I also want to be able to create lots of content without much work. So for example if I make a new armor set for the player its fidelity should more or less match the player’s fidelity. By reducing the player model’s complexity I can speed up the rest of my content process.
I’m trying to figure out how to properly space buildings on a city block. For now I’m just cramming them in there and having them all face south. Eventually I want to be able to support different building models of different sizes, sometimes with grass between the sidewalk and the building and sometimes with alleys between the buildings.
The sidewalk is actually raised up just a little bit, I need to figure out how to compensate for that when units walk on it and also when static objects like buildings are placed on it. You can see here the wood panels on the bottom of the doors look a little thin, that’s the sidewalk covering them up.
Another challenge I’m running into is when a building ends up blocking part of the view. There are ways to deal with that like doing x-ray style outlines, but for now that’s another TODO.
I’m playing around with the idea of more urban-feeling cities on the overworld map.
I’m working on replacing the color palette with something more full-featured. So I replaced the albedo map on the material, but haven’t gone into Blender and updated the UVs to point to the new color locations.
This is giving me some ideas.
This variant of the skeleton has a sword. It has a longer attack range, and can also use the sword to block incoming attacks. If you attack at the right time in the skeleton’s attack animation you can land a blow. In theory if you get around to the side or back of the skeleton you could hit it from there too but right now its turning speed is too fast so you can’t get behind it.
I also did some work on the enemy AI so that they update more frequently and generally act more aggressive. I’m trying to figure out what’s fun about combat in this game, and having an enemy like this that you have to be a little smarter to defeat is a promising step toward finding the fun.