Hit Box++

Hey guys! As you know, if you’ve been keeping up with the blog posts recently, we’re going into something of a rebuilding phase due to the release of Unity 4.3 and all of it’s lovely new 2D-centric updates. I want to talk a bit about this process and the kinds of things you can expect in the updates to come. Since Unity 4.3 is all about making Unity a more 2D-friendly game engine, just about every aspect of Moon Intern is affected by the changes. Now we could certainly have just ignored the updates and continued to use the tools that we’ve built to continue work on Moon Intern but we feel that some of the updates are way too useful to ignore. Not only are there things that we can now do that we were previously unsure we’d be able to pull off but we’ll also be able to do a lot of the things we knew we could do, only, much faster and more efficiently. One of the things that has me most excited is that hit boxes will be much more dynamic and versatile.

One of my biggest tasks as the lead gameplay designer is designing and implementing enemies and bosses. For the most part I’ve been dealing with static(relative to the center of the game object in question), rectangular hit boxes for all of the enemies, npcs, and projectiles. This has mostly worked for all of the enemies and projectiles that we’ve started to implement thus far but it hasn’t exactly been perfect. For example: the foam bat currently spawns a number of box colliders to simulate the swing of the bat. It does, technically, do what it’s supposed to do but it’s a bit off. An character will often show signs of being hit by the bat slightly too early because the animation isn’t exactly in-sync with the instantiation of the box colliders.

With Unity 4.3, we can have hit boxes that are totally dynamic. They can move and change shape based on the animations of the game object they are associated with. This way we can have melee weapons that behave properly and feel totally natural. It also gives us a lot of extra freedom with the kinds of enemies and weapons that we’re able to design. We’ll be able to have all sorts of melee weapons, amorphous enemies with ever changing hit boxes, and complex bosses with a variety of hit boxes that move and change based on the flow of combat. It has me and the rest of the guys super excited for the possibilities and we can’t wait to start showing you guys the fruits of our labor. We’ll have more blog posts soon talking about some of the other new changes that you guys can expect to see. Stay tuned. From Chicago with love.