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    Ellie
  Sun Mar 22, 2020 2:08 pm
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Omnipresent Merchant
Oh aye.

So first thing's first, I'm gonna strip back my web server, reinstall everything and start afresh. Brand new everything.

So pre-first thing's pre-first, I'm gonna make sure my backups are actually complete and functional.


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    Ellie
  Tue Mar 24, 2020 6:15 pm
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Omnipresent Merchant
Rebuilt the chat system using PHPBB3.

Also, demonstrating scaling.

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    Ellie
  Tue Mar 24, 2020 7:14 pm
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Omnipresent Merchant
Possible main menu? Not sure if they really match the UI.

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Edit: no, they don't


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    Nathaniel3W
  Tue Mar 24, 2020 7:30 pm
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They're fine. Function over form. After you've finished everything else, you can come back and worry about menu icons.

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Check out Himeko Sutori, the upcoming large-scale tactical JRPG where you lead an army of 100 unique characters


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    Ellie
  Tue Mar 24, 2020 7:51 pm
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Omnipresent Merchant
This is true.

Though I've swapped them for gold to match the trim, added a Guilds icon, and a HP bar.

HP bar slides down out of the menu's way.

Image


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    Ellie
  Tue Mar 24, 2020 10:18 pm
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Quick mockup of the in-game forums.

Working in-game:

Image

How they could look once skinned:

Image


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    Ellie
  Wed Mar 25, 2020 1:34 pm
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Omnipresent Merchant
I have to start character creation all over agan -.-';

Because I let you login using Facebook and other apps, there is no registration screen as such. Which is what I had piggybacked for my character creation screen.

Sucks badly.


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    Ellie
  Wed Mar 25, 2020 3:11 pm
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Omnipresent Merchant
Potential character creation scene but I want to declutter it somewhat now. Seems too text-heavy.

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    Xhukari
  Wed Mar 25, 2020 6:39 pm
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Generic Townsperson
I like the idea! And I agree about it being text-heavy; the descriptors seem superfluous to me.
What's the deal with the "I don't know that!" buttons? I guess the one near the colour question opens like a swatch window for changing the outfit colour or something? If that's the case, I would personally be tempted to put the button under the hair colour option, and drop the question text altogether.

Is the one near the name like a randomiser? If so, you could save some space by having it be one of those circular buttons, but with the image of some dice! It could tie in well with 'More information' buttons to pop up the text descriptors, if you want to keep that information available.

Keep it up! I love following the progress. :)


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    Ellie
  Wed Mar 25, 2020 7:11 pm
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Omnipresent Merchant
It was sortof a pun on Monty Python. (The guy on the bridge asks those questions and the bloke says "I don't know that!")

Clicking them would randomise.

But I can forego a lame pop reference for the sake of cleanliness.

New attempt - split forename and surname so as to have less players finding their name is already take. Also enforces a style of name, like Guild Wars, which lends to roleplayability.

Randomly generated names will have certain in-game easter eggs, such as you may find an NPC you are actually related to if you pick a certain surname!

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    Xhukari
  Thu Mar 26, 2020 1:05 am
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Generic Townsperson
Oh, my bad! I'm an unwashed peasant, who's only exposure to Monty Python was the Flesh Wound meme...

Will they comment on being related, or something? It sounds cool. You've got me reminiscing over the good ol' days of GW1...


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    Ellie
  Thu Mar 26, 2020 1:00 pm
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Omnipresent Merchant
Partially unexpected problem...

You sign in with your Google, Facebook, whatever account. That system, which I cannot modify because it is basically an API used in everything, creates a username of the form forename.surname.9182

Now, for GDPR reasons (and also cleanliness), I can't just be throwing out peoples' real names all over the place.

In the above chara creation, you choose a Forename and Surname for your character.

Means I am going to have to edit the forums, chat, etc, to use this created name rather than your user name.

Which throws up a problem. Your name is a "custom profile field", technically. Which is stored in a separate table to your username, because of how PHPBB does things.

Which means any time you draw from the user table you'll have to also draw from the profile fields table. Which is annoying because now I have to edit SQL and I hate editing SQL, not for lack of ability, I just don't trust my fingers &^&^W%^"%£

Anyway, small shit, I just felt like sharing the trials and tribulations of Amy Pond.

...

So yeah today will be mostly spent editing various (and by various I mean dozens) of scripts to use your created name rather than your username.

Because instead of having one function called get_name, which I have, they instead call it from the table in every function it is used.

I HATE editing other peoples' scripts.

But, like, I wouldn't want to have to work with the registration API myself for example, so the tradeoff is worth it.

Anyway, don't expect any pretties today.


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    Ellie
  Thu Mar 26, 2020 4:30 pm
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Omnipresent Merchant
Since I had to edit all the files to work on username/name thing, I've made some progress skinning the in-game forums.

Image

Will make "my guild" dynamic so it will show your guild's name.


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    Ellie
  Thu Mar 26, 2020 4:32 pm
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Omnipresent Merchant
Current thinking on how private guild forums will work:

When you post, your title is appended with your guild ID, for example:

10283|Title of Thread

That way there is ONE forum of guild posts rather than an unlimited number.

You can only view posts appended with your guild's ID, and you can do basic moderation - delete basically.

That way I can moderate the guild forums by simply making all mods able to see all appended threads.

Users don't see the appended title, they just see "Title of Thread".

Will make sense once implemented.

Basically it's how I did private game forums here, if anyone's used the game manager and blogs etc.


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    Ellie
  Fri Mar 27, 2020 10:45 am
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Omnipresent Merchant
So a little update on name selection which is becoming a bigger task than I thought (but that's good).

Image

So when you click a name box, if it's the default it wipes it for you to type in.

As you are typing the game:

  • Strips any non-alpha characters (seperately validated post-submission)
  • Automatically formats to be lower case with first letter capitalised
  • Checks the database to see if that name combination has been taken, and gives you an error if so


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    Ellie
  Fri Mar 27, 2020 2:27 pm
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Omnipresent Merchant
Image

So I'm almost at the point where I can consider this "a game" and start actually creating content.

If you enter a name that's in use you get the error shown in the previous post.

You can cycle through various combinations of character looks.

If you enter a used name, the play button disappears.

Once you click play game, it finalises your character and you're immediately playing: while you're creating your character it's already loading the visual equipment elements so your character displays.


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    Fayte
  Fri Mar 27, 2020 4:57 pm
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whoop whoop! really digging this Amy!


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    Ellie
  Sat Mar 28, 2020 11:23 pm
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Omnipresent Merchant
Thanks :)

Finished today's goals!

Image

The only non-working bit is Thwack, which is an elite (8th) skill. That is generated based on the previous seven skills you choose, which also gives you your "class". I can't really implement that until there are more than eight skills, otherwise every class would be the same, so I'm blanking that out for now and considering that a project for much later on.

Tomorrow's goals: inventory and equipment scenes (which might actually just be the one scene, thinking about it - difference just being equip instead of use).


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    Ellie
  Sun Mar 29, 2020 12:52 am
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Omnipresent Merchant
Sketch (mockup) of tomorrow's job, the inventory screen.

Image

I am thinking of limiting people to 30 of each item, possibly with a bank like RuneScape for big hauls? Not sure on that.

Encourages people to sell stuff.

Anyway. When you "use" a piece of equipment you wear it. So, I need somewhere on this scene to show what items you are wearing. I guess that could go where the skill bar is?

Idea behind ancient tomes is that for the build system you need a LOT of skills to make it work. So to get people hella skills you could get these books from quests and such.

Also what do you think to these icons? (Because I need to buy them with fundz)


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    Xhukari
  Sun Mar 29, 2020 5:25 pm
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Generic Townsperson
Aaaah, the smell of fresh UI in the morning. :D

The icons look nice, and could work quite well with the rest of the UI you already have.

30 items tops? In total?

Using the skill bar for the equipment instead sounds like a good idea to me!


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    Ellie
  Sun Mar 29, 2020 10:23 pm
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Omnipresent Merchant
30 of each item. So not the usual limiting the inventory to 28 like Runescape, rather, you can have 30 logs AND 30 ore AND 30 swords etc.

So you have to keep banking to build up a stock, but you're able to do multiple things at once to break up the monotony.

Here's my progress on the inventory screen, which is proving more work than I envisaged.

Image

So this is mostly working. The only things left to do are:

- Use item button
- Equipment box

I am going to swap out the spells as discussed, like so:

Image

However I am breaking for the night here because I need to decide if I am truly happy limiting the player to three equipment slots.

Left hand, right hand, body.

I realise in my descriptions I have made the player left handed. While I'm cool with that I might edit it to instead say "main hand" and "off hand".

So basically in essence the player can have some clothes/armour, a weapon, and a shield/book/etc.

My reasoning:

1. I hate outfits made of the best items but that look terrible
2. Keeps the focus on skills rather than items, which gives me more time to work on skills, leading to the build/class system working better
3. Limits the amount of items in the game which when small could boost the economy a bit

But as I say I need to decide if this is really the way to go.


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    Ellie
  Mon Mar 30, 2020 12:16 am
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Omnipresent Merchant
Next week's tasks:

- finish inventory
- add gold
- system: shops
- content: first items and shop
- centre the player (move up a little)
- chat push messages
- npc messages (done, but fine tune and test)
- system: merchant skills
- content: big chunk of spells
- system: builds (make a start)


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    Xhukari
  Mon Mar 30, 2020 1:14 am
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Generic Townsperson
Ah they stack. So the inventory is purely type-limited, with no direct limit on 'slots'? It sounds different for sure, but a refreshing change.

The equipment slots definitely look nice. I feel the whole 3-limit thing is part of a much bigger picture though... how close does gear tie into progression (is progression more vertical or horizontal)? Does the different types of gear provide a variation of gameplay themselves, or are they just stat sticks, maybe used for requirements for some skill use?

I know I personally prefer horizontal progression, as it allows for more 'jank' and is less linear. But I've discussed progression in MMOs a lot with the people I've been guilds with etc over the years. And from my little sample pool, is definitely skewed in favour of vertical progression. People seem to just like bigger numbers and easy milestones.


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    Ellie
  Mon Mar 30, 2020 1:44 pm
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Omnipresent Merchant
Inventory is done, next step is to set up some basic items to test test and test with.

Which leads me to make some actual content.

I bought some icons I can use:

Image

Have 478 I can use, and they're gonna be pretty maleable to I can make/edit my own later.

Anyway.

Background is of my choice. The black and red seem pretty dark, need to decide what to use there.


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    Xhukari
  Mon Mar 30, 2020 4:02 pm
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Generic Townsperson
Oh they got transparent backgrounds? That's good.

Do you have distinct tiers of gear or qualities? Could colour-code the background for that. Or failing that, maybe for what type it is? Red for melee, etc.

Not currently a fan of the current background though; just a round gradient in the middle. The ones in the mockup had more of a 'glow' of the colour around the object, which looked nicer.

These icons also remind me of the icons used on Newground's forum.The old ones had a 'coloured sunshine beams' thing going on, while the newer ones have more of a smokey/ghostly background.

Just some ideas. :)


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    Ellie
  Tue Mar 31, 2020 12:11 am
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Omnipresent Merchant
Yeah I was hastily trying to replicate the old backgrounds but didn't realise it's just a glow. Easily done.

They're also super high resolution so I can use them in many places. Very versatile stuff. Loving GameDevMarket at the minute (though my wallet isn't).

Quick dirty video of what's done so far.

https://imgur.com/a/LbVzEGa


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    Ellie
  Tue Mar 31, 2020 6:53 pm
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Omnipresent Merchant
Next tasks.

Image

Image


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    coyotecraft
  Tue Mar 31, 2020 9:44 pm
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Competent Minion
So much progress. I'm jelly.


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    Ellie
  Fri Apr 03, 2020 12:27 am
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Omnipresent Merchant
Can I get away with spritesheets that are 3,840x16000 in dimension and 1.8mb in size...

http://www.afar.ws/BASE_1sheet.png

Or do I stick with sideview only battle animations.


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    coyotecraft
  Fri Apr 03, 2020 12:43 am
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Competent Minion
They look pretty spaced out, so you could probably reduces the frame size. Unless you want some kind of universal frame size that includes non-human sprites. But I think that's too much.
Unless changing weapons mid battle is a thing I think all those weapon poses make it bloated.


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