One of the biggest factors in the success of our crowdfunding campaign in 2012 was allowing some of our backers to become the characters who would populate our game world. As part of our promise to communicate more with our community I’m posting at least 1 animated character portrait (cough, roughly, cough) every day! Each avatar has 4 animations (normal, angry, sad and happy). Enjoy the crazy characters! If you know you are a character in Moon Intern, then look forward to seeing your pixelated self here in the future!
This Week ( June 29 – July 3 )
Want to see more characters? Click below to see the rest!
Howdy, good people!
So another Full Moon is here. What’s the deal with us? Well we’re still working on Moon Intern of course. Here we go with the update!
The majority of work done this past month was heavy on expanding the design of upcoming features. This includes puzzle ui, the relationship with Amor, and most of all the actual game flow itself. The new puzzle interface is pretty sweet, and we’ve talked through several user stories to make sure it can handle the bunches of puzzle types and gameplay scenarios we want to throw at it. We’re still working on the new mockups for those puzzles, but trust me when I say the interface is going to be pretty sweet.
We’ve also been working on generating the level flow, as in getting buildings generating, both exterior and interior and making sure the doors all connect right. The buildings also have to work with whatever the mission objective is, as well as offering up many of the diversions and non-linearity offered in the gameplay. Buildings are filling with rooms and connecting their doors now, but we’re still working on properly managing placement of the object at the other end of the door as enemies and npcs are able to use doors and not all those characters are the same height. Little things. Once we can finish rooms in a meaningful way (art, yay!), we’ll be able to release another test build.
Almost all of our weapon shot types have been implemented other than the lob shot now. So besides your standard straight shot we also have spread shot, wave shot, boomerang shot, and lob shot as mentioned above. We still have other modifiers like rapid-fire and charge to implement, but we’re getting there.
So this past weekend we got together and jammed. Jam went great, though we had to break some stuff that had been working, so we still need to get fixed this week. That’s good news though; The stuff that is broken is mainly collision based issues, as Pete is beginning to implement multiple physics layers to accommodate different classes of objects such as enemies, npcs, friendly fire, enemy fire, etc to work with our standard collision, as well as collision which will be pass through (allow you to jump up through, or double tap down to fall through). Additionally doors got some work and later this week they will be ready for us to start using. We have a couple spaces right now that we want to test out the doors, and one of those spaces is the testing grounds scene from the current test build.
We also made some progress on hud functionality, trying to get the health points and energy points bars up to the functionality we need for weapons and enemies. We also have a wave shot weapon now, which looks GREAT on screen! The boomerang shot is also about half-implemented, so we’re moving right along in that area. We also worked on some key locations, like “starting areas” for random levels.
Overall we slowed down a bit early to catch the Nintendo World Championship, which was really fun to watch, cheer and jeer. We’re all working hard this week to get the build back up the functionality, and then we’ll be on a mission to get bare versions of the gameplay loop showing off what our ideas are for Moon Intern. When you play the next test build (not going to give hints about any dates, haha) you’re going to see for the first time our ideas start to flourish.
Hey, folks! Quick update. We’re excited to be doing another Moon Jam this Sunday. We’ve all been working separately on our respective tasks since the last update and after this weekend’s jam the game will be a bit more complete. So y’all know, the next test build is at least a few weeks away; we want the next build to include some actual gameplay other than just jumping around and shooting without objective. I’ll post a small update after the weekend to recap the jam, but until then I hope everyone has a great weekend!
Howdy, good people!
So this was a much better month than last! We’ve got a new build for testers that we’ve submitted to Humble (though as of this post it is not yet live), and we’re driving forward with development. I pushed hard to get another test build this month, mostly because it’s been a few months since the last one and I want to make sure y’all know we are hard at work. We almost decided we weren’t going to put out a new build, as we’re trying to focus on the long-run opposed to slapping something together for show which would be nice but not real. I had hoped for this demo to include level generation with working interior/exterior structures to explore, but unfortunately it does not. BUT FEAR NOT! Level generation and exterior structure generation is working together for the first time. See!
As mentioned before, Peter is being cautious with this as we don’t want to build features on top of the generator until it’s foundation is solid. He doesn’t even want the actual art there yet (and that makes me a sad panda). It’s looking really great and I’m really impressed. If you’re into the technical stuff Pete’s describes it as “A building is now placed randomly in the scene using a template image which is then converted into a series of tiles (based on what tileset you want the building to be formed from) and then constructed from the chosen tileset. This is so that building layouts can be tileset/theme independent.”
This past month we each went about our lives, trying to each get tasks done from our lists. Personally, I wish we could have gotten more done, but we still have some notable events to talk about.
The team recently assembled to discuss some new tasks as well as rulesets for the level generator. The whole thing is a bit intimidating as it’s going to be the backbone of the game, but thankfully Peter was able to make a leap of progress in the level generator a couple weeks ago. He is actively attempting to implement structures into the terrain generator this very second, and I hope by the time the next Full Moon Intern comes around we’ll have a demo that allows exterior and interior exploration. Mason and Gewargis are still on Weapons, Enemies, HUD and Inventory systems, and working close with Peter on that.
I’m honing my blade of pixelart. I moved along on drawing many npc portraits over the last month, making additions to the website almost every day. I’m still working out a new format to present them in, as posting them on our kickstarter page was starting to look a bit rubbish in the news feed. I stuck nose nose the the grinder today and finished redraws of 6 more characters but I still need to color correct them before adding them to the website. With the tardiness of our delivery of Moon Intern, I want to make sure the backers who are becoming characters in the game are drawn as quickly as possible to help fulfill what is arguably our biggest promise. I have hundreds of characters to draw, but still want a sense of quality to adhere to. There’s a difficult to balance to that, but sticking to drawing a character each day really helps. I’m hoping I’ll soon be up to 3 a day, and once I’m there I’ll be able to have that task knocked out of the park in no time at all.
I’m disappointed we didn’t get a new build out for the testers this month. I really could have put something together, but I just didn’t finish the art I wanted for it, and thus haven’t put the objects into the scene I’m working on. As I’ve talked about previously, the level I’m putting together isn’t terribly advanced, but it’s a place to test some abilities and interactable objects. I don’t want to put off that task any longer, so that’s what I’m going to make my mission to complete this coming week.
We are finally encountering some nicer weather here in Chicago, and it’s time we all emerge from our winter slumbers and shake off our cloudy-day blues. We’re looking forward to a great summer of development, and I hope we can share some good news with you all soon.