Monday, June 30, 2014

Plans for character voices

First a short update on Cres condition.
While she's able to slightly work a bit again (about 1-3 hours per day), it's not fully recovered yet.
So I guess this might go on like this for another 4 weeks probably, hopefully not longer...
Which means, really really slow progress until she's fully recovered, yes.
(there are also lots of commissions that need to be done, so yeah... slow progress indeed)

Other than that:
The zombie is already ingame and working as intended, and the next thing that needs to be added is the hentai stuff for it.
After we've done that, we'll move on to the next enemy, etc. etc. etc.
(everything step by step)

old comedy sketch of Ferania surrounded by dick-trees

Lets talk about what I had in mind for the voice acting:

First of all, as there's no text and no dialogue in the game, there's nothing to "read".
But we planned to include attack-shouts for the special attacks, moans for the hentai stuff, as well as maybe some random talking a character could do in certain situations.

So far we have 4-5 voice actresses that would give their voice for one or two characters.
That means we hopefully have enough variation, but in case we need more VA's that won't be a problem at all.

Other than the female characters, there's also male boss-monsters in the game.
(and female boss-monsters too, who also are being voiced by female VA's)
They'll also get an VA assigned to them, and they'll mainly say provocative stuff, and yes, the voices get distorted so that they sound more like huge, demonic monsters.

I hope that these variation in VA's as well as using sound-editing tools to make monsters sound like monsters will help in improving the atmosphere of the game.
And yes, all female characters are being voiced by female VA's.
Just thought I should point that out.

On wednessday I'll write the next character introduction post.
I'm still wondering if I should introduce the polar bear girl or another wolfgirl.
(well, they all get their turn sooner or later, so it doesn't really matter)

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Character introduction: Chiira

As always, please keep in mind that this is a possible character that might be part of the game.
(depending on the outcome of the future Offbeatr campaign etc.)

Chiira has freckles, which look good on her!

Background and personality:

Chiira is one of the first created cat-humans (she's a Cheetah) in the wolfenstahl-universe, she's a demi-god, just as Ferania and Aurora (and everyone else of the characters that "might" appear in this game).
Her speciality is agility and high speed movement, as well as earth-element attacks.

She's also part of Feranias demon-hunter team.

Compared to the others, Chiira is rather quiet.
She's not as self-confident as the others, well she's confident in her skills and abilities, but she's not showing it openly.
She doesn't like to be in the spotlight, so she usually keeps a low profile.

Compared to other cat-humans, she's keeping her curiosity in check pretty well.
She has good self control over herself and her desires, and she's very sensible and makes reasonable decisions.
In general she's a very balanced character, she's not brave, but she's no coward either, and she would always do what seems to be the right thing to do... without risking anything that is.
Chiira is also very intelligent and thinks first, before acting.
In general she's less muscles, more brains.

Ferania sometimes asks her for advice, and Chiira also looks after Aurora when she's drunk again.
In general she's getting along with nearly everyone, and she's having strong bonds of friendship to the others in her team.

Sometimes when she relaxes, she starts daydreaming... well, actually she's daydreaming a lot.
But she's also able to focus on doing something if necessary, without losing concentration.

Chiira is a sweet and gentle character, less provocative than her teammates.

Abilities in the game:

Regular Attacks:

Chiira is very quick, her attacks are fast but weaker than others.
I'm not sure if her abilities stay like this, so maybe they get swapped out completely.

Chiiras 3 unlockable close combat abilities:

- Spinning kick: hits enemies around her
- Dash attack: moves from left to right, right to left, left to right etc. (jumps between 2 enemies and hits them several times)
- Leap attack: jumps through enemies in front of her and damages them

Special Attacks:

Her regular special attacks are ranged attacks, she summons rocks from the ground and shoots them at her enemies.
Some of Chiiras ranged attacks are stronger than those of other characters.

Chiiras 3 unlockable special attack abilities:

- Sandstorm: summons a screen wide sandstorm that damages enemies
- Charged up rock shot: summons several rocks in order to create a larger one
- Earthquake: damages all enemies that stand on the ground

In combat, Chiira has to rely on her fast movement speed as well as hit and run tactics.
Well, she can still smash weaker enemies without having any problems doing so,
but stronger enemies might need some hit and run tactics.
(or strong special attacks)

 As always, feel free to ask questions in the comments!

Monday, June 23, 2014

Looking at other rogue-lites

Just to give you guys an status update:
Cres is on her way to recovery, but since she needs to do some commissions, progress on the game will be rather slow.

Anyway, lets talk about other games for once.
Especially about rogue-lites, since well... our current game is being a rogue-lite. (with hentai)
And it's always a good idea to look at what other (similar) games did.
Obviously I already did this months ago, but I figured that maybe some of you might wonder what's going on in my head, right?

That's why I'm doing this blogpost.

Lets start with Rogue Legacy.
It's a rogue-lite platformer, okay.
It has random level generation, as well as lots of other random stuff.
(even random character selection, kinda)

But ugh... yeah... without going too much into the details, there's stuff I actually don't like in this game.
First of all, my notebook is damn slow, and Rogue Legacy runs in slow-motion.
If I manage to get a character that's either far sighted or near sighted, I actually get a slow-motion "boost" lol

Anyway, everything goes reeeeeeeeaaaaaaaally slow, and thus dodging stuff should actually be quite easy, right?
Yeah... in theory...
I quickly found out, that it isn't.
And I actually needed to start dodging even before the enemy telegraphed his attack, which is kinda annoying to me.
So that kinda led me to stop playing the game after a while.
(I'm not complaining about the slow-motion, I'm complaining about the requirement to dodge an attack even before it's being telegraphed/used)

Btw. no, I'm not saying it's a bad game, I'm not even doing a full review or anything here.
I'm just pointing out things that I either really liked, or really disliked.
Purely personal preference, no offense intended.

Anyway, that leads me to the conclusion, that in the game I'm currently working on, dodging and blocking should be easy to use, and the enemies need a reasonable telegraphing animation.
If you see an enemy telegraph an attack, you should always be able to react.
Either by avoiding the attack completely, or by blocking it.
At least that's how I personally feel about this.

I actually want to make a fast paced game, where reacting to things happening on the screen is crucial.
Of course you can simply button mash your way to victory (or defeat...), but reacting to the things that actually happen on screen should give you an advantage over simply ignoring telegraphed attacks.

So uh, yeah, lets move on to the next game:
Ascendant is pretty much going into a similar direction I'm heading.
It has close combat, ranged combat, and stuff to explore (well, it's a rogue-lite).
You also find upgrades occasionally.

Aside from several "traps" that I got into that simply felt unfair, the game seems to be pretty enjoyable.
The only things that I find a bit lacking is the combat system itself.
You only have a 3 hit combo, as well as a ranged attack.
It somehow feels like there's something missing, I don't know...

Anyway, I want to focus a lot more on combat and having some interesting special attacks in my own game.
So, yeah, that's something I definitelly "learned" from this.
Ah yes, and no unfair traps... there will be some kind of "traps", but first of all there's some kind of "telegraphing" that makes clear that there's something.
(occasionally glowing eyes in the darkness... and stuff...)
And furthermore, they won't drain you of a large amount of your HP.
(or even kill you...)
Which still makes it annoying to fall for a trap, but it's not feeling unfair.
Or at least I hope that it's not feeling unfair...
(yeah, some stuff looks good on paper, but bad when put into the game...)

The last game I wanted to mention is Risk of Rain.
I didn't know that it was a rogue-lite until lately, and when I played it I was kinda surprised at how good it actually feels.
The thing is... it's a damn hard game.

It's so hard that I often don't even survive the first stage.
But strangely it doesn't feel frustrating?
I've no idea why that is, but maybe it's because you actually find a lot of upgrades in a short time period.
At least that's my guess.

What I think I learned from this is, that I actually want the player to find a lot of (small?) upgrades along the way.
So, instead of finding 1-2 upgrades before facing the first boss, I figured it would be cool if the player gets 1 "guaranteed" new special-attack per stage, as well as ~3 upgrades or something like that.
Maybe even a bit more, if you're lucky.

The thing is, even if you fail beating the first boss, I still want to give the player some feeling of achievement.
Having slayed a hundred demons/monsters, finding some upgrades and a new skill along the way, all that stuff "should" feel good, even if you fail against the first boss.
At least... that's the plan.
(in the end, it needs to be tested if it really is as great as it sounds... same thing as before: it sounds good on paper, but how will it be once implemented?)

I guess I'll stop here.
As you can see, I really think a lot about all those things, and I like to look at other games what they actually did.
And despite this being a hentai game, I really want the gameplay to be fun and challenging.
(well, easy-mode might be less challenging, but normal-mode and hard-mode certainly will be)

And err... speaking of games.
I'm not sure if it's a coincidence or not.
But I realized lately, when playing War Thunder, that team-members (people I certainly never seen before) keep on shooting at me without any reason.
Like, the match starts, and suddenly someone fires at me, and I didn't do anything... I mean, the match just started.

So, what I wanted to say:
If someone recognizes me, and wants to say "hi", please feel free to crash into my plane anytime lol
I guess that way I'll recognize it way better than some "stray bullets" xD

I'm not complaining here, I'm just saying that a "crash" into my plane would be way more effective.
(and certainly way more funny xD)

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Character introduction: Aurora

So here it is, this weeks character introduction.
Please keep in mind, that this is a POSSIBLE character that "could" be part of the game under the right circumstances.

Anyway, lets get this going!

Background and personality:

Aurora is one of the first created wolf-humans shortly after Ferania has been created, she's also a demi-god too.
Her abilities are exceptional martial arts skills, as well as holy-element light-based attacks.
She uses different fighting techniques like "Praying Mantis" or "Drunken Fist".

She's part of Feranias demon-hunter team "Team Wolfenstahl".
Actually, Aurora is second in command, right after Ferania.

While she gets often in a fight with Ferania, both of them actually get along pretty well.
It's just that they sometimes disagree with each other, or that Aurora is trying to provoke Ferania.
(which she is very good at)
Aurora is very self-confident, and despite her strong personality, she is not as strong willed as Ferania.
Also, she's not as stubborn as Ferania.
(if both are arguing, and Aurora has enough of it, she'll just say something along the lines of: "yeah... whatever, do what you want" and leave the place)

She has a tendency to enjoy herself a lot, like drinking lots of alcohol until she's completely drunk.
Or by having sex with some random guys... mostly while she is totally drunk.
Often Chiira is looking after her in order to prevent this to happen, as Aurora has a lack of self control regarding alcohol, and she doesn't know what she's doing when she's completely drunk.
(yeah... alcohol and resulting lack of self control is actually her biggest weakness)

If she's not drunk, she actually has a high sense of dignity.
And she's actually very elegant and proud of herself and her abilities.

yes, Aurora is tanned!

Abilities in the game:

Regular Attacks:

Aurora is the most versatile close-combat centered character there is.
These skills aren't final, so they can be changed any time, but so far they look like this.

Auroras 3 unlockable close combat abilities:

- Upwards kick into the air: fast move to hit air-targets
- Downwards kick to the ground: can be chained with the "upwards kick"
- Special charged attack that varies, depending on the current fighting-style.
(this will be explained later on in this blogpost)

Special Attacks:

Her special attack button has some different function compared to other characters only Aurora has.
She doesn't have ANY special attacks that can be "unlocked" (I get to this in a second).
When pressing the button, instead of shooting bullets (like Ferania does), she does her regular "current" combo depending on her fighting-style, and she adds holy damage to it.
When holding the button down, she can charge a laser-beam up, which is her only ranged attack.
(similar to a kame-hame-ha, just that it's a holy-element-laser-beam)

So, instead of unlocking new special attacks, Aurora unlocks new fighting-styles.
At first she starts out with a regular fighting style, as well as "Praying Mantis".
Later on she can unlock Flying Crane, Eagle Claw and Drunken Fist.
(she learns those fighting-styles instead of new special attack skills)
You can freely switch between these fighting-styles during combat.
Her standing pose changes, as well as her standard attack combo.
The different fighting styles effect range, damage, attack speed, and some other stuff.
(for example, Flying Crane has more range as she uses mainly kicks, but Praying Mantis is a lot faster but has less range, while Eagle Claw does lots of damage, while being rather slow, etc etc.)

Also her charged up "regular attack" changes with each fighting-style.
One could be a head-on attack, another one could shoot short-range shockwaves to the left and to the right, etc.

So there's actually a lot of variation in her different fighting-styles.
And yeah, of course each one has it's strenghts and weaknesses.
But in the end you could very well win the whole game while using the same fighting style (whichone you prefer) over and over again.
Though switching between different styles in order to be able to take down certain enemies easier is the better way to go.

I hope you liked this weeks character introduction.
As always, if you've got questions, feel free to leave a comment!

Cres is on her way to recovery, but it will still take some time.

Sunday, June 15, 2014

Upcomming blogpost themes

I know, it's kinda weird to write about ones upcomming blogpost themes lol

The reason why I'm doing this:

Well, the thing is, Cres wasn't able to work the past 8 days because of her arm.
And it's most likely that she won't be able for another couple days.
(anyway, she's on her way to recovery, so everything is fine, it just needs some time)

That's the reason why we don't make any progress lately, and thus it gets a bit difficult to come up with new topics to talk about.
But nothing to be afraid of, we will continue this project, as we're really eager to finally do a game with Ferania!

To emphasize this, I thought it would be a good idea to tell you guys (and girls) about the upcomming blogposts.
I'll try my best to do 2 posts per week.

First of all there will be one weekly "character introduction", just like I did with Ferania, but perhaps a little bit more structured.
I'm trying to do that every Tuesday to Thursday, this week it will be most likely on Wednesday.
(so yeah, each character introduction will be around the middle of the week)

Those introduced characters are all "possible" candidates for being added via stretchgoals on Offbeatr.
And yes, I'll post a nice picture of them all along with their respective introduction.
Luckily we've got plenty of old stuff, so that works out even with Cres arm injury.
Characters that are planned for this new introduction are mostly characters I've never mentioned before.
(so yes, most of them did not appear in the voting I did a while ago)

Furthermore, I'll do a blogpost about various other things at least once a week.
I'm not sure about what I should write about yet, but I'll come up with a topic eventually.

Yes, the animated CG we had been working on is kinda "stuck" midway.
We'll continue working on it as soon as Cres is able to.

Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Character introduction: Ferania

I'm a bit late with writing this blogpost, but here it is.

FYI, I figured it would be a nice idea to introduce a character each week.
In those articles, I'll write about the character itself based on the stuff that's depicted ingame.
Mainly the characters "possible" abilities, the attacks and skills and maybe some other stuff.

I'll also tell you something about the background and personality of the character.

Anyway, lets get started.

Ferania Wolfenstahl is the main heroine of this game, and the first playable character in the game.
(if the others get added to the game via stretch goals on Offbeatr later on, they still need to be unlocked in the game through achievements or events, but I'll cover that in a different blogpost)

Abilities in the game:

She's a good close combat fighting character, though there are stronger ones.
Feranias 3 special unlockable close combat (CC for "close combat") abilities are:

- Smash attack: drops from the air to the ground, and damages foes underneath her
- Dragon punch: like the dragon punch from the PC game "Worms", jump in the air and punch
- Charged up Lightning Fist: does a lot of damage, but consumes a lot of energy, the more energy is being charged up, the more damage does the attack.
This attack can use up all energy in one single attack, and it's probably her strongest attack.
Yet it needs time to charge up, and yeah... it can consume ALL energy.
So you better not miss!

Each character also has a special-attack button, Feranias special attacks are partly ranged.
Feranias regular special attacks are "bullets".
Her 3 unlockable special-attacks (SA for "special attack") abilities are:

- Thunder storm: lightning strikes from above, does AoE damage around her
- Lightning dash: she dashes forward past enemies, and damages everything in her path
- Charged up (lightning?) shot: she shoots a strong charged up "bullet"

She also has another special ability, her "dash" (double tab a direction) is actually an instant teleportation.
(other characters only have a regular dash)

Background and personality:

In the wolfenstahl-universe, Ferania is the first wolf-human that has been created by one of the ten god-creatures (by the Hellwolf).
She was created in order to fight demons and other followers of the Hellwolf, if they go on a rampage.
(the god-creatures don't interfere with the stuff that's happening in the world, so they have substitutes or agents that act on their behalf)
So yeah, she basically fights her own "allies", in order to protect humanity.
And yes, she's actually several thousand years old, as she doesn't age being a demi-god.

She's also the leader of "Team Wolfenstahl".
The other members of that demon-hunter team are Aurora and Chiira.

Personality wise, she's very aggressive and impulsive.
It's also very easy to provoke her, as her pride can easily get into her way.
Ferania is smart, but her impulsive nature can lead her into troubles sometimes.
She's also very righteous, and cares a lot for others.

Since she has a very strong personality, she won't give up easily.
Also she won't submit to anyone willingly.
Ferania takes her job as a demon-hunter serious, and she's doing her job very reliable.

Ferania colored

I hope you liked this article.
If you have some questions or feedback, feel free to leave a comment.

Cres's arm injury got a bit worse again, so we didn't make much progress in the past days.
That means the CG animation is only halfway done, and we will still need some time to finish it.
And nope, it's nothing dangerous or so, I don't know the apropriate english term for the injury, but she visited a doctor and hopefully she gets well soon.

Thursday, June 5, 2014

More screenshots! yay

Originally I wanted to do this blogpost way earlier, but there was lots of stuff going on the last days.
Well, at least I got to work on the game.
Though I wasn't able to implement an enemy yet.
(yeah the zombie graphics are done for some time now, but I kept programming other stuff the last days)

On top of that, I'm currently practising to animate CGs.
So maybe in the upcoming days there's something to show you guys (and girls).

Anyway, here are the screenshots:

Please keep in mind, that this is NOT representative of the quality of the final product.

There's like a ton of stuff that still needs to be improved.
Here and there are small pixel mistakes, and the whole atmosphere needs to be a lot darker.
Details are missing, things to jump and stand on... and so on and so forth.
(maybe even a bit water in the sewers)
So yeah... a LOT of stuff that still needs to be done.

Why I'm showing you the screens?
Well, it's kinda some sort of "progress report", and other than that, I wanted to talk about the initial gameplay itself.

While it's clear that it has some rogue-lite elements (like permadeath and random stuff, as well as unlockable stuff etc.) it's also a fighting game.
And yeah, it has some minor platformer elements too.

I posted those screens, so it might be easier to understand where this game is going.
As you can see, it's pretty much a flat surface, I mean the playing-field itself.
But it's not as boring as that might sound, as you can always choose to jump on things to get a height advantage or escape a horde of zombies for a brief moment (maybe to kill some foes in the air or to wait until your MP recovered a bit to use that super-move you just found).

You can also choose to jump down into the sewers, but there will be monsters too.
Also there could be some traps, or environmental dangers, like fire, electricity or something else.
In any case, you'll need to use those "platforms" to your advantage, or to move around more effectively, as well as to dodge stuff or avoid enemies for the time being.
That's what I meant when I talked about "minor platforming".

In theory you could beat the game without any platforming skills at all.
But being able to jump from one streetlamp to the next (via dashing skill etc.), you can actually use the height advantage to win a battle more easily.
Obviously, there will be flying enemies, as well as shooting enemies, and enemies that can jump themselves.
So... yeah... depending on the enemies, you're not always "safe" up there.

If you've got any questions, feel free to ask me in the comments.

Hopefully next time I do screenshots, I'll have some enemies and combat in the game, so I can take some screenshots of that.
(as I said, we're working on doing a full animated CG right now, so "maybe" that's the next thing I'll present you)

Sunday, June 1, 2014

Enemies (Part 3)

I guess this blogpost will be rather short.
Well, it doesn't hurt to make short blogposts once in a while.
Anyway, here are the sprites for the zombie/mutant as well as the ghost.