Reminder:

Make sure your build is at or higher than the latest build posted below. If it's lower, verify the game contents to force an update. It's also important to remember that the sandbox depot is not updated regularly. This depot is only used for confined testing. If you were working with me on one of these confined tests, please remember to opt out of the sandbox depot so you're always receiving the most up-to-date build of the game.

Saturday, February 25, 2017

Build: 1656765

Editor Update

  • The new object bar will now properly flag objects such as bricks and force fields as being resizable.
  • Object names have been added to the new object bar along with some adjusted names. While not finalized, these are the names I'll be using from now on. One notable change was that the spinning bombs, aka clinging bombs, are now simply "Clockwork Bombs".
In-Game Changes
  • Updated visuals for fire and lightning elemental gems. Their shaders should now work properly along with their respective destroy effect. In other words, fire gems actually explode again.
  • Vertical player movement has been slowed down by about 16%. This will be tweaked in future updates as the final movement is further refined.

Tuesday, February 21, 2017

Build: 1647488

Group Icons
Small update to the new object toolbar replaces the old style group checkboxes with icons which are easier to identify on the fly. The update also adds a multiple checkbox which when disabled will allowyou to select individual groups rather than more than one group at once.

Monday, February 20, 2017

Build: 1645059

Object Panel Refresh

One of the issues I faced when building levels for the campaign was despite having built and categorized the objects into various groups, I still found myself digging for objects trying to find what I was looking for.

A while back an object preview was added to let you see what you had selected before you placed it and this worked well for eliminating the post-click limbo between selecting a part and placing it, but it did nothing to solve the root issue. Finding what you're looking for in the first place.

This update aims to fix that by providing simple but defined icons for each object, making it much easier to see specifically what you're looking for. The grouping system has also been replaced with a filter system. This is because many objects share similar qualities to other objects and don't always fit cleanly into a single category. The filter will allow you to narrow down what you're looking for without having to find a specific group it belongs to.

Naturally as usual, everything here is still subject to change. Any and all feedback is welcome.

Sunday, February 19, 2017

Editor Icons

Editor Refresh
One of the major issues with the level editor right now is how cumbersome it can be to try and dig around for the specific components you're looking for. Figuring if this is an issue for me, having made it, it's most certainly going to be an issue for newer players not familiar with the components. This is especially true since the campaign won't be introducing components by name but by their shape.

As such, a refresh to the editor is going to replace the current labels with new icons. Here's a preview of that update right now:

Wednesday, February 15, 2017

Build: 1629376

So over the past week, I've been occasionally releasing small build updates. None of these builds contained a massive amount of new content worth mentioning just yet, mainly because a lot of this content is still very much in construction and none of it has even begun to resemble what I intend the final product to look like.

That being said, anyone on the latest build will notice that the campaign menu is currently in place, along with a basic progression tracking mechanics. None of the levels included in campaign have any sort of leaderboard support yet, nor does completing them actually have any meaningful impact. In fact, while a basic save file is established, it's all still very basic and likely to change.

Major Changes
The core mechanics of the game are already set in stone, however in trying to design levels for campaign mode, I've been starting to notice a lot of glaring issues that need to be addressed. A few of these issues are already in place with the current build, such as the ability to access FreeView mode and the pause menu before the level actually begins. However a few other issues such as camera control and just overall level visibility are going to be opened back up and examined to see if I can come up with a better way of handling them.

Part of these changes is going to include an overall reworking on how a lot of mechanics currently work so as to provide more realistic usage of the individual components in respect to whole level designs rather than each component being in the sort of proof of concept bubble they're in now.

These could be subtle changes to simple mechanics like the speed of tornado diamonds, all the way up to significant changes like what can and can't be destroyed with homing bombs.

Editor Changes
While building levels, a lot of glaring issues have started to show their face with the editor. One major issue is just how overwhelming it can be to start making a level from scratch. A solution to help combat this is the inclusion of starting templates. Currently these include a small level outline, medium level outline, large level outline, and of course the original blank level grid.

Visuals and Performance
A lot of visuals still need to be fixed and updated since the Unity 5 upgrade and a lot of the current fixes are still very unoptimized. As time goes on, you'll continue to see improvements on both ends of the spectrum, but these are going to come gradually with each update rather than a single update addressing them all at once.

Fun
Ultimately the end goal here is to try and ensure that the final game is above anything else, fun. And right now I'm not entirely sure the game in it's current state is going to deliver a campaign mode that is exactly that.

As usual though, feedback is more than welcome. There's never been a good idea I haven't at least considered.

Tuesday, February 7, 2017

Campaign Update

Just wanted to post a quick update between builds since it's longer than I anticipated, but currently I'm knee deep in setting up the underlying mechanics for the campaign. The system is being setup to be as expandable as possible so that new levels can easily be added post-release.

The system as it stands is going to have five levels broken up into multiple sections. You'll only have to beat four out of five levels to unlock the next section. Each level will contain power cubes which contribute to the time to beat the level, but will also be used towards "completing" a level.

These cubes will be entirely optional in terms of progression through the game, however if you're the kind of person who strives for perfection, you'll need to collect all the cubes in each level. Completing all the levels in a given section, including collecting all the cubes will also unlock achievements.

There's no set level count in mind. There's no intent to have any sort of tutorial prompts. Level progression will be the tool of choice when training players about how various components work. As such, it's safe to assume that most of the mechanics won't show up right away but will be slowly introduced throughout the course of the campaign.

Thursday, February 2, 2017

Build: 1607369

More Visuals Fixed
The bulk of this small update involves fixing more of the visual issues that the Unity 5 update brought. This includes proper reflections on things like death bricks, homing bombs, tornados, etc, as well as refining some of the particle effects.

Mechanical Fixes
Homing Bomb tracking is a bit more reliable, replacing the previous single point raycast with a spherecast that covers a slightly larger area and makes the likelihood of 'seeing' the player a bit easier. The 'near wall' restriction has also been lifted since the spherecast ideally prevents the bomb from getting a complete line of sight if it's chase path isn't completely clear from the point it locked on.

  • Currently there's an issue where the bomb will 'snap' into walls as a result of this restriction being lifted. I'm looking into a clean way to resolve this issue.

Death Blocks now function correctly again.

The particle effect and sound from dying are fixed.