January 7, 2010

Companion Menu

Finally got around to adding in the companion menu system. We wanted it to look like an actual system that Jack would use to log the different creatures he finds, so we made it look like a notebook with sketch-like drawings of the different animals.
I'm really happy with how this turned out, especially because I have been dreading making it for awhile now. It turned out that it only took about 3 hours to code into the game and everything worked perfectly according to plan the first time. That's not a common occurrence! It was also nice coding something new into the game, since I've been doing a ton of tweaking for a very long time now.

We are also thinking about adding a log of all creatures, in addition to your companions, to encourage the player to explore more and try to find all the creatures in the game. For now though, we will have to put this idea aside and focus on the core gameplay, additional features can come later if we still have the time. Because if we work on a game with zero pay for too long, we may end up finishing it inside a refrigerator box along the street somewhere, and I don't know how long my computer is going to last if it's plugged into a cardboard cutout of a power outlet.

We also (mostly) finished the first boss in the grasslands. I spent a lot of time, and still am, tweaking his moves and stats and that type of thing. At the moment he is still way too hard for people who seem to not be me, because I get way too good at the game from all the testing I have to do. So I need to make sure the boss is not too hard but still provides a challenge for the player. I wish there was some way I could get really bad at the game. Maybe I'll slam my fingers in a door or something.

Getting very excited about level design again. I added in a few new sections yesterday and am just about ready to start work on some different areas. We should be working more on the slime cave in the next coming days, as soon as nate puts together the tile set. The first dungeon should be coming up very soon too, and most of the tilesets are already complete for that area. All I need is to add in a little bit more level designing and some cut scenes and the beta test demo should be ready to send out to those of you who would like to play it and give us some feedback.

Our current goal is to get the demo ready by the end of the month, so I think now would be good time to start to take some signups for beta testing. If you would like to do some testing and haven't told us yet, make sure to leave a comment or send us an email at team@sharkarmstudios.com.

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