Reynard Devlog #20 – Boss Noc, Ally Judy and More (0.9.1)
Darkness was missing and Noc is bringing it!
Till now the balance was in favor of Melee bosses. It would be wrong if it remained that way for a longer period. But it would be boring if the new Ranged boss would deal a “regular” ranged attack damage. That’s the reason I’ve created Noc.
Unlike other bosses he doesn’t have health dependent states! Noc is aggressive from the beginning. His mission is to chase Reynard and hit him with his darkening / ethereal fists. If Reynard get’s hit by his fist, his vision becomes limited.
Not only that he’s shooting dangerous projectiles, he’s also summoning cursed weapons!
Judy can now be rescued in the dungeons. She’s one of the most powerful allies. Her attack is shooting homing arrows from her arbalest towards her enemies. She has a fair amount of health and is currently my favorite ally!
[MINOR] Changed the description of the throwing spear.
[MINOR] Added SFX to various enemy and ally attacks.
[MINOR] Drake now has a nice death animation and projects fire projectiles from correct position.
[MINOR] Added SFX to “pawn” shrine.
[MINOR] Added death animations to mobs.
[MINOR] Crate buildings now display healthbars.
[MINOR] Water can now appear instead of the abyss – More biome variations,
[MINOR] Last hitting an enemy triggers mini camera shake.
[BALANCING] Necro Staff’s kill count before summoning an ally skeleton is reduced from 15 to 10. Its damage has been incresed from 1 to 1.3.
[BALANCING] Forest Child perk nerfed. It also takes 20% of player’s score and gold.
[BALANCING] Water Plate Armor’s durability increased to 50.
[BALANCING] Bubba’s prices and gap between them increased.
[BALANCING] Mumu’s explosion damage increased by 100%.
[BALANCING] Zombies’s damage increased by 50%.
[BUGFIX] Fixed some cells where player directly runs into an obstacle or an object.
[BUGFIX] Changed the colliders of the water obstacles in dungeons.
[BUGFIX] Blind monk perk now influences vision on all levels… Invasion and bosses included.
[BUGFIX] Rotation of Bubble turret bullets has been fixed.
In the upcoming week I’ll focus on polishing stuff! I’ll probably add some map on the loading screen, so the player will know how far from saving Prascilla he is. I’ll try to add options to the ingame menu, fiddle with dungeon progression and as always… add a new enemy or ally.
Next Friday is after Christmas so I wish you a merry Christmas upfront 😀 Have fun beating Noc and Santa!
Reynard Devlog #19 – Santa Boss, Zombies and More (0.9.0)
Ho-ho-ho! Christmas is around the corner and Santa has come to visit Foen!
Since it’s December and Christmas is around the corner I wanted to add some Christmas spirit to Reynard’s universe.
Luckily, last week Elthen came to the stream and said “hi” (He’s a fellow dude that draws some of the pixel art that we’re using in Reynard). I knew that I had an opportunity to influence his next drawing project and I kind of cheered for a fighting Santa. A week later Kung-fu Santa was made. So Elthen, thank you!
He became another boss influenced by the powerful Wizco’s magic! But you can bring him back to his senses if you free him from the spell (beat him). Players who can defeat him will be rewarded with Santa’s costume!
Santa is a first “seasonal boss” who can be fought from “12/12/Every Year” to “1/2/Every Year”. There will probably be more seasonal bosses in the future.
Even though there are many enemies in Reynard, a zombie was a must! It fits into the dungeon environment perfectly!
Not only that; he’s good looking, he’s baddass… In a way. If you have any companions and the zombie kills them, they’ll turn into zombies!
He’s immune to necro and poison damage and is from now on a regular companion of Doctor Plague.
[BOSS] Added a Santa Clause boss battle. Free him and unlock yourself a Santa’s costume. You can start the battle by interacting with the portal next to the fox hole. You’ll be able to fight Santa from 12/12/Every Year to 1/2/Every Year.
[ENEMY] Added a Zombie. Immune to poison and necro damage. When it kills its victim it restores 0.25 hp to itself and spawns a new zombie in its victim’s place.
[BALANCING] Doctor Plague now spawns Zombies and Skeletons. His movement speed was increased by 50%. He now has some companions from the beginning.
[MINOR] Removed a single pixel mistake on Reynard’s Santa costume 🙂
[BUGFIX] Fixed a bug where golems dropped golem’s fist instead of golem’s hand. (one is usable, the other is the actual weapon of the golem).
[BUGFIX] Wilson’s laser beam can now damage allies and companions.
[BUGFIX] Doctor Plague can now damage allies and companions.
[BUGFIX] Fixed the bug when the stairs to secret room are spawned behind the indestructible objects.
[BUGFIX] Companion skeletons wouldn’t get transported to other levels.
In the upcoming week I’ll focus on boss battles, new enemies and new rooms! If you’d like to recommend anything, please let me know!
Reynard Devlog #12 – Doctor Plague and More! (0.8.3)
Our fox is on a streak! We’re releasing another Reynard update! This week we’re bringing Doctor Plague to the party!
Some of our players complained that they can’t defeat our first boss Dexter because he’s too “difficulty”… Well… We don’t like nerfing stuff… But we can surely spice things up a little bit can’t we?
I kind of started designing Doctor Plague with a word “easy” in my mind, so that the players that have to get “git gut” could have a higher chance of reaching the second biome. But I don’t want to make the challenge too easy for the players. That’s why I’ve added some spicy moves to the Doctor Plague and I’m sure that we’ll have to balance him a little bit in the future updates.
We’ve noticed that our players had a very happy reaction when we suggested that maybe each run the bosses should be picked randomly. That’s exactly what we did! Now when you fight your way through the dungeons, you’ll never know which boss you’re gonna face!
Fixed the Boom Joe! Effect zone didn’t clear its targets when disabled.
Added potion UI icons.
Acid Mick HP reduced from 5 to 3.
Boom Joe’s and Freezer Face’s charge range reduced from 4 to 3.
Removed the credits scene, will implement it rather in-game world.
Fixed the infinity punching with spamming special attack button when special weapon was equipped.
A fellow user on Reddit asked us a couple of questions about us, inspiration and the development process of Reynard. So I’ve decided to write a more general article… Let’s call it “Reynard – Road To Early Access.”
We used Unity3D and the C# language. We were inspired by the wish of making our own video game and were influenced by games as Final Fantasy, Legend Of Zelda: A Link To The Past, Warcraft 3 TD maps and Binding Of Isaac. Technically we started developing Reynard on 6th of October 2017 – that’s the date of my first “pet project” commit on git. Project was originally called “Into The Fray”. We’ve been working on a couple of games earlier, but we never developed anything this “big”. Our advice for aspiring game developers would be: “Start small, set smaller milestones and finish what you’ve started”.
Game engine we used
We developed Reynard in Unity3D engine using C# language. The engine itself is fantastic, but when we started we wrestled with pixel perfect camera, tile extrusion and so on. Maybe if we picked an alternative such as Godot we’d avoid these problems, but then again we were familiar with Unity3D and in the end, it has tons of learning material and a very well equipped asset store.
I also kind of cheered for Unity3D, because there are many employers and project which use it. I wanted to know that even if our games fail, I’ll learn something useful, something that will help me on my developer path in the future.
Inspiration for making video games and Reynard
I will write this from my perspective and I’ll ask Boštjan to add his points of view.
I had a wish of creating my own video game since I was a kid. But… You know… It is different when you daydream about something and when you decide “I’m gonna do it, or die trying”. Since I didn’t and don’t (yet) have kids and I saved some money that would keep me “alive” for several of months, I decided… I’m gonna do it! I’m gonna pitch an idea to my old school mates.
That’s how it started. For the “test of collaboration” game, we’ve created our first simple mobile game Math Panda. After Math Panda we’ve decided that we’ll try to create a game inspired by Kingdom called Pariah: Anton. In the middle of making Pariah, I gave a proposal for creating one “sprint” match 3 clone – Space Cyclops.
The reason for a sprint was behind me being stuck in the development process and not seeing an exit, I just really had to do something else before I lost my motivation… it was probably too ambitious a project for me back then. So when we finished Space Cyclops we went back on Pariah… and soon I again started working on some other pet projects. The next pet project’s prototype name was called “Into The Fray” which later turned into “Reynard”.
Reynard has been influenced by many games we played growing up.
When I was a kid my parents bought me my first gaming console, the SNES. The game that came with it was none other than Super Mario World. I immediately fell in love with it. But then you beat your first game and you need something more. Luckily I got Final Fantasy Mystic Quest from my half-brother’s cousin. I couldn’t understand the game because it was in German. But you know, back then I just went with it… even though the game is presented as a “starter RPG” for the European market, I loved it. I really liked its top-down perspective and the art! There was this huge manual that I couldn’t understand but the art in it was amazing and the cover image was epic!
So time goes by… I get a PC and it has the ability to run console emulators… which opens an opportunity to play all other games that I didn’t even know exist for SNES. First I went for Final Fantasy games… Played them all. But then I remembered about the cool looking top-down game my school mate once brought with him to school which we played in a class room (it was a special day in school and not a thing we did every day :D). The things that stuck with me were: no waiting for turns like in Final Fantasy games, cool story and pixel art. The game was none other than The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past.
The next game of inspiration was Warcraft 3. Blizzard hit the jackpot with the level editor. You could download thousands of player-made maps and you could play them with your friends! That’s what we did… we played tons of tower defense in Warcraft 3 😀
And Boštjan… He is an Isaac maniac (770+ hours played :D) and we both love its rogulike elements.
Development and larger hurdles
The first commit was on 6th of October 2017… but it was just a prototype… Back then I was working on Pariah. I still dream about finishing that game. Well, anyway… Pariah started to get more complicated, and in my free time I started working on a top-down game. I just wanted to do something else from time to time. Eventually we had a meeting with the team and we decided to switch to another project and start working on a roguelite top down game. We thought that it would be more fun and easier to make… Fun? Sure! Easier!? Not really 😀
Some of the hurdles were:
Not being synced with the team – in the first half of development, I was the only one working on Reynard fulltime. Luckily, Boštjan committed to the project when I needed him the most. Believe me that having someone to discuss matters with is very powerful and keeps you motivated.
Many times we had a working system but sometimes I just didn’t think it was flexible or good enough so I redesigned some of them completely from the ground up even though they were doing their job just fine. I guess the reason behind this was that we never really had a clear picture of what we were building and that I tried to program systems that we’d reuse in future games.
Not having an artist. Learning to draw pixel art was fun but it took a lot of time that I could spend on programming.
Unity importing small assets every save (importing lasts around 10 minutes). Still looking for the root cause of this problem.
If you’re interested you can read some of our devlogs which you can check out here.
Our advice for aspiring game developers
“Start small, set smaller milestones and finish what you’ve started”.
We’re gonna add more content to Reynard and polish it. At the moment I’m working on different merchants, area of effect spells and so on. We’re also starting the process of steam submission.
So if you like what you’ve read and you’re interested what Reynard is all about, you can check it out here:
Reynard Devlog #7 – Dialogue System Reynard Can Talk!
Hello again. As I mentioned in last week devlog my next mission was dialogue system.
I tinkered a bit with Nodecanvas and their system, which has a lot of possibilities, but in the end I made my own. It’s really basic for now but Reynard can talk to you without problems. I will extend it in next days to do more things. For now our system reads text files in which it searches for new line (when you press return/enter). Then in the next step loads them into box. You will also have possibility to skip dialogue lines by simply pressing right button or you can just wait and text will automatically write on screen.
Box is made with help of unity’s UI canvas and TextMesh Pro. We use TextMesh Pro because is simply better than default Text from unity. With TextMesh Pro you have much more customization and much clearer fonts if you zoom camera really close. You can get it for free from unity asset store.
How we start Conversation
We can trigger system in two ways. One is by proximity. If Reynard comes close enough to Phoenix as you can see in video, dialogue will start automatically. There is also possibility to run dialogue only once. You will have to pay close attention in the game as you never know when is the last time when some NPC will speak to you.
The second way is that you need to press a button to start dialogue. You can see that in this week video when Reynard comes close to the house and you can see exclamation mark above it. If you press right button dialogue will start or you can turn away and never know what secrets you just missed. Also we can select if player is allowed to move once the dialogue has stared or hid movement is frozen
There are also some basic sound effects when text scrolls and don’t worry they will be improved as we decided to put them in few hours before this devlog was released.
This is all for this week devlog. Come back next week for new info about Reynard.
In the past week, I was mainly focusing on color scheme and tilesets.
Because we are aiming for cyberpunk color scheme, I have selected colors that can be combined to bring out that ‘neon’ shine with which we want to stand out.
Working with that kind of color scheme (very light and shiny), made me realize, that it will be hard to merge them all together. To much neon shine is exhausting for the eyes, to little and we lose the main aspect of our game design.
In the last days I was also facing another problem – using to much colors in one item. My new rule for the pixel art from now on is ‘less is more’. I have already applied this rule and the new color scheme to the ground tilesets.
My first selection ground tileset was too realistic, it contained very complex shapes and not so vibrant colors. It was great but not the tileset we are looking for “Pariah” game. I completely changed my design, simplified it and applied the new color scheme.
Tileset is almost complete, but I am still thinking of using gradients in the future.
The journey of game art and design
Seeing our game Math Panda on google play store published, and most of all, my own graphics, made me really proud and hyped for the next project.
I was always only into programming. My work consisted of PHP development with Laravel framework and frontend technologies. Chasing that bits of code from one project to another made me always proud of my work and excited of doing it, but never fulfilled.
When I was developing my own wordpress template, I have realized that no matter how brilliant code I write, there is still a gap in my mind. Soon I realized that I want to dig deeper and start making my own art, graphics and designs. I started to learn drawing with my hands which made me more than excited. From sketch like 7 year old could make, I evolved my skills to something that I can be proud of. It was a time that I put that enthusiasm into computer graphics.
I came up with idea of making a first android game, called my friends and we organized “hackaton with a purpose of making our first android game. I wanted to create my first game design. That’s the reason I started learning Affinity Designer, which is a great alternative for Adobe Illustrator. I managed to come up with all the graphics, including game design, icons and banners in only 2 weeks.
Seeing our game Math Panda on google play store published, and most of all, my own graphics, made me really proud and hyped for the next project. Not even a day passed by and Filip contacted me with a new idea for a game. He presented me the idea of making “Pariah: Anton” – an indie pixel based game.
Yessss. New challenge! Of course I will be a part of it. From my view this is a new opportunity to learn and make pixel art. For pixel graphics and animations I am currently using Pyxel Edit. Simple, yet powerful program for pixel art. Coming from vector graphics to pixels is a big change. Learning how pixels work, choosing positions and colours, shading, presenting more with less has become my daily routine. As hard as it seems, its my new thing! The thing which makes you wake up in the morning, which gives you purpose and meaning in your live.
I always saw video games as a form of art. To me, video games are one the most powerful mediums to present stories and trigger emotions. I’ll always recall when I got my first console and a game with it. The game was no other than “Super Mario World” which pulled me in the gaming world very, very deep. It just felt awesome when you woke up on the saturday morning, invited your friends to come over and spent the whole day talking and smashing controller’s buttons while playing video games. There wasn’t a week when one of your friends didn’t show you a new trick he pulled out in a game, a new easteregg he discovered or highscore he set.
Anyway… “I grew up”, discovered my passion besides gaming (programming), finished college where I met 3 awesome dudes, found a steady IT job, worked for a while, discovered that I’m not satisfied in my job, quit my job and finally decided that I want to give myself a chance as a freelance web developer or as an indie game developer.
At that time, I realized that this is probably going to be a rare opportunity in a lifetime to fully dedicate my working hours to something that I really want to do. It was a time when a friend (Žiga) called me and proposed a hackaton saturday at his place. I was hyped.
On this little hackaton, we decided to create a simple mobile game, which helps kids to learn Math (Math Panda). We finished the whole project in 2 weeks and published it in a google play store. We were proud.
The whole experience of cooperating in a game development with other friends made me feel awesome. Because of that feeling and a feeling that we can develop games faster and better if we cooperate, I dared to imagine something bigger… I told my friends about the next project… and now here we are for the next 5-6 months, trying to make another game.
The next post will be about the “Pariah: Anton” – our next game. If you want to stay updated about our progress, subscribe to our newsletter in the sidebar.