I've been active a lot, lately. Things have been springing to mind that I feel like sharing, especially when it comes to pulling the curtain back in the industry, a little, and letting greenhorns, novices, and civilians see what things are like for us. (I may not have any games out and nothing worth putting on Steam, but I've been a dev for 13 years. I have experience.)
I was going to hold off on this update, due to frequency of posts, as of late, and for fear of getting a little annoying to my regulars, but then I remembered I made a promise a few posts ago to make up for separating out a two-part post by posting more graphics, so I decided I'd post now.
-Enemy AI is coming along very well, so far. Enemies can now see me if I'm within their field of view, and they'll come after me if they've spotted me. They can't harm me, yet, because the test enemy is unarmed, but they attempt to navigate to me, and get close to me so they can attack me.
-I debated even mentioning this, because I still want to keep some things under wraps, for now, but I'll reveal this for the skeptics out there: Enemy AI can now be escaped. The enemy will track you, and if you move behind a wall or other obstruction, they will be unable to see you. They will still attempt to catch you, though, by moving to the last point they could see you at, and then searching for you there and around the area. In fact, there's no limit to the area they're able to search. They can search virtually anywhere. Unlike Deus Ex: Human Revolution enemies can leave their designated rooms in order to find you, and can chase you clear across the map, and if you're out of sight, they can search anywhere on the map in order to locate you.
So whether they stick close to where they last saw you, or look all over the area for you, is entirely up to them. They'll hunt for you for a range of time, and if they can't find you, they'll return to where they were standing before they became aggressive. If they can find you, however, they return to attacking you.
-And finally, I've completed all of the walking animations for the player character. This took up a majority of my work time over the last week because I had 8 angles to do, 10 frames each, times the number of segments his sprite is made up of (two, his upper body and lower body.) That's a lot of work, especially since I had to take multiple repetition-breaks to avoid resenting this project.
Here's some more art from the game, as I promised.
They're both identical, just that one is on a lighter background for those with color blindness trouble, or a bad monitor. Shading these is not going to be fun...
Here's him holding a gun. 3rd frame shows discarded casings after having been ejected from the gun after firing. Check it out, he remains right-handed no matter what way he's facing. His sprites aren't just mirrored, even though it would have been much easier on me, and taken only half the time to just do one half of the sprites and flip them to face the other way. I'm planning on having him use both hands to hold pistols while he's walking, for a little more stability. It would just be an esthetic addition, but at least it will seem a little more real.
-Finishing the AI.
-Creating the first real enemy sprites and ditching placeholders completely.
-Early alpha tech demo?
I'm definitely allowing super early access to a demo, just as a kick to the balls of those who doubt I'm really working on a game, and as a double kick to the balls of anyone who doubts I'm a real dev. But also as a treat for those who have been patient and continue to come back to my blog to check up on my progress.
Don't get me wrong, I do think skepticism is important in our industry, but when you're acting like a smug asshole, thinking you're calling out a phony, I'm going to revel in your salt and shame when I prove you wrong. I won't name any names, but if you're reading this, you know who you are. Investigate a little more next time you call out a dev, because the more smug you are while throwing around call-outs and insults, the more of a tool you're going to look like, in the end.
I don't know how long it's going to take to get to the demo, but I'm working towards it. And I'm running out of essentials that need to be present before I can show it. So that's a good sign.
I've wasted enough time on this post. Back to the grind. (Took me almost an hour and 40 minutes to compile that animation because I had to combine the upper body and lower body of the animation, and I kept on screwing it up somehow.)