As I’ve mentioned, I decided to start over and rebuild the game engine from the ground up. It’s been very successful so far. I don’t have enough to put together a demo just yet, but here are some of the new features already:
- Variable screen resolution. Anything from 320×240 to 1280×1024. The default is still 640×480.
- Really nice object-handling with NPC’s walking around on the map. I currently have a map with 950 Artemii frantically around the forest. This will be helpful later on when I get to enemy programming.
- Smoother, less flickery scrolling. It looks really nice.
I’m still working on making a killer overworld game engine, so I don’t have any battles or menus back in yet. Those will get improvements, too. Meanwhile, Rhonda has been making new graphics for trees, buildings and characters. Once those are ready, I’ll probably make some new maps.
Has it really been that long? I guess so. Now, 350 revisions later, I’m thinking about scrapping the entire project and starting over from scratch. It wouldn’t really be “starting over”, mind you, because I’ll still be reusing a lot of code and tools I’ve made. Of course, all of the graphics and music will stay the same. But a lot of the programming is messy and difficult to work with. That’s a problem.
Given the current state of the program, I see two options. First, I could consider the engine almost finished, and put the finishing touches on it. This would take about a month, and the result would be a lackluster but functional game. Or, I could redo most of the programming and wind up with a fuller, more optimized engine. There are several big things I want to do to the game, and I just don’t think it’s practical with the way the code exists now. Starting over would also get rid of any overhead that has been slowing things down. Plus (this is perhaps the most important reason) it would get me motivated to work on the game again. Lately I’ve looked at my mess of an engine, and I don’t really feel like working on it this way.
I think I’ll give it a try. Worst case scenario: I’ll decide it wasn’t worth starting over, and that the v.350 engine ain’t so bad to work with. Whatever. I’m going to try it. I expect programming this game will be several times faster the second time around, and I’ll wind up with better functionality, new features, and a sleeker engine that runs smoother. I might even try to make it a more versatile engine – i.e. variable screen resolution – to make it easier to port someday. I’d love to have a DS version of this.
Expect to see, eventually:
- people walking around in towns
- a better framerate
- a new inventory/magic/whatever system
- improved battle menus
- some representation of monsters walking around (think Zelda 2)
That’s all for now.
(outdated link removed)
This is going to be the last demo for a while, because I’m going to start redoing major parts of the programming. The game is by no means perfect, but this is what we’ve got so far. This one isn’t a big change from the previous demo, but there have been several small fixes.
- Fixed enemy missing player.
- Various grammar fixes.
- Added sound effects for getting treasure and for “no room” / “not enough GP”
- Added sound effect for using potion items in overworld.
- Added sound effect for potion items in battle.
- Sped up local map view.
- Adjusted local map to not show treasure chests & special blocks.
- Fixed bug – antidote wasn’t taken away when used in battle.
- Added game goals screen with treasure count.
- By request, adjusted overall game speed by 25% (for computers that can handle it).
- By request, added default character names.
- Some maps don’t have second layer of foreground at all.
- In this version, you can get attacked by more enemies. There’s a cool little algorithm based on number of players and player levels.