A week has gone by and still no menu. Gah!
The problem is, when I work on Overcrowd, I’m always trying to fix the core game and bugs before adding the ‘window dressing’. This hopefully will stop soon, as I can’t really promote the game or get real feedback until it is easy to access and has tutorials. Also maybe I will get the core mechanics right soon, as it feels like I am maybe 90% there.
There is another problem. What could generously be called my ‘workflow’ has been totally derailed by the awesome RPG, Divinity: Original Sin. Along with a huge and detailed open world, it features turn based combat, and it has swallowed up the hours like a hungry time thief that lives in black hole (note to self, make that my next game).
I probably enjoy the combat most when playing. In Divinity, your wizards use ‘elemental magic’ to battle each other. So, for example, ice or water can counter fire, electricity is conducted by water, and there is this as interplay between the types taking place in combat. Magicians can also heal your party.
Anyway, it got me thinking, in a way Overcrowd has some similar aspects. The units are basically like magicians casting spells to perpetually fight the flow of commuter problems. Litter feeds into anger and disgust, which affect chance of commuters going into a rage or vomiting. The various units mitigate against these different factors.
Ok, so it doesn’t need a huge amount of thought, it’s more about reacting to, and planning ahead for, specific events. But the units and their effects are basically reminiscent of spells, and like Divinity, I’m hoping to increase feedback to the player, maybe by supplying more figures, and also by adding some ‘juice’ to the game by way of more or better particle effects.
Characters in Divinity also have text over their heads when talking. In Overcrowd I’m planning on having speech bubbles, for units and commuters at different points, to explain what they are doing. This should make it easier to understand the game for new players.
But moving on from these tenuous comparisons, here are the latest updates:
-Fixed invisible commuters (I think?). If not – I think it is caused by slow frame rates skipping animation termination on angry commuters. More testing needed.
-Fixed glitches in angry and vomiting commuters – they now mill around their locale. There mood is no longer reset by hitting navigational waypoints.
-Worked on (maybe fixed) glitches in waiting behaviour around train conflicting with fleeing and angry behaviours.
-Worked on stopping angry and vomiting animations playing multiple times.
-I reduced range of random speed of commuters by one point. More of a test. When people move slower I think it actually makes the game harder, as more opportunity for people to be made angry. But it increases utility of Stewards as they have more effect when ushering people on.
-Particles on refuse collection. Note to self – these still need to be animated.
-risk of commuter rage or vomiting scaled by game length, getting gradually more likely to increase difficulty. Needs tuning.