What have I been doing?
Fails:
Well, I spent an evening trying to get a ‘dodge’ mechanic in and trying to restore my ‘walking backwards’ movement in. I failed.

Why?  Well I couldn’t make the dodge feel satisfying due to my control scheme, and to balance it would have required a very large effort spanning many days, and at this point I don’t feel it needs it enough to warrant spending that long on something that I think won’t add too much. I’m going to do some research later in the run up to release and if I can make it work intuitively and balance it – I will put it in.  Also after the pre-Alpha demo I will gauge the public response and if they feel it is needed I will redouble my efforts.
As for the walking backward, well I opened up a can of worms with this as for some reason the player can get nearer to collision objects whilst walking backwards, even managing to get ‘inside’ the object and be stuck. I tried for hours to correct this by modifying collisions, changing the collision code, changing sprite sizes, all sorts.  In the end, everything I tried had a knock-on effect on something else so I threw the few hours work away and reverted to simpler times… Again, if I can figure this out I may return to it but at the moment It’s too late in the day for me to be modifying fundamental stuff like this as it seems to have adverse effects on things I have long-since nailed down and am happy with.

Wins:
Previously when loot dropped in the game, it spawned on top of the chest or enemy it was coming from. Last night I managed to get it so that the loot all pops out in random directions and collide with anything it hits (so it can’t pop through walls for instance!).  Just adding this little thing makes me smile, and helps with the piñata feel I want.

Also, there is a small delay I have built in when opening chests as it animates the lid opening and then….wait for it…..wait….POP!  Out come the items.  This is deliberate and combined with the SFX and PFX I will have in sync with it, I think it’s one of those little details that helps make it feel exciting.

Little things for little minds I guess?

What’s Next?

Errrrrm.  I think I will redefine some button mappings to be more intuitive and closer to the desired hand position whilst playing, and refactor the instructional text to reflect that.
Also I will be adding a variable to track the current dungeon level and display that.
I also had a good idea (inspired by the item drop ‘pop’ I describe above) to have gold in the game as ‘popping’ things that randomly drop when killing enemies and looting chests. Not sure if I’ll have any purpose for gold as of yet, though I have toyed with the idea of merchants etc…not sure it fits with the remit of the game though… Still it’ll be a fun little thing to do, collect treasure (perhaps precious gems etc too?) acting almost as a scoring system for people to compare to each other?…

Thanks for reading.

Ruined Games