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June Project Update 3

Last updated on 24/06/2019

Last time I said I wanted to accomplish the following for the next piece of work on the battler:

  • Do for Skills / Spells what I’ve done for attack
  • Enable the “Defend” action
  • Handle the win / loss transitions
A Winner is Burns

In addition, I implemented a rudimentary party inventory system and got item use up and running as well. I also spent some words putting a boundary on what done meant. I’ll reproduce them here. ” Getting ‘done’ with the battle system will really only mean that the moving parts are all in place. I’ll be able to draw an attack and deal damage to some enemies. The pieces that handle combat spinning up and tearing down will all work. I’ll be able to use a skill or an item in combat… I’m thinking of ‘done’ as more of a ‘feature complete’ rather than ‘feature and assets complete’.”

Magician, Heal Thyself

It’s tempting to say we’re there, but there are lots of refinements that feel less like polish and more like needed work to define the behavior of the system. Let’s look at winning a fight as an example. When you win, the game executes the onCombatWin script, and that pops you back out to the screen you were just in. What it doesn’t do is award experience points, currency, or look up potential items in drop tables. That part of the combat system is still ill defined, but it really does need to be in there before the whole thing is complete.

There are a lot of features that I feel fall into that bucket of “it isn’t done until this is in”. The following list is what I’ll be working on in the final week of June as I try to get the battle system into working order within the timebox I gave myself:

  • Award EXP, Money, and Items on Victory
  • Animate the transition to and from combat
  • Kick the tires on the combat message system
  • Implement a second combat layout (back attack probably)
  • Make sure KO’d party members work correctly
  • Add in a death animation for enemies

That seems like a lot, but I’m hopeful. None of these are new interactions, and in my limited experience with GM2, building new UI / player interactions are the most difficult and time consuming things. This is all fleshing out stubs and cleaning up interactions that are already part of the system. I think I can probably get one or two of those done every day in the time I spend doing side project work in the mornings. We’ll see how that estimate holds up next week.

The work this week added a lot of grist for the monthly retrospective mill. I’m going to want to talk at some length about:

  • Triggering events off of animation states, and why that’s a good or bad idea
  • Multi-step interactions and how much I miss partial function applications
  • How god awful GM2’s git integration is

So we’ve got that to look forward to in a week. I hope to see you all again then.

Published inGame Development