Gamedev and ROMhack General: Post WIPs

For art and other creative projects that aren't Let's Plays.
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Self-explanatory, I know like 50% or more of us are working on something. Let's talk about, post WIPs/alpha builds about, and give advice on those somethings.

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Oh man, you assume I'm working on something as in singular. You should know by now there's no way that's the case given I have to restrain myself from making more LPs than I can handle.

Though I'm not planning on handing out specifics just yet, these are all the game projects I have stuff written down for in text files and on paper:

- 5 RPGs (1 JRPG, 2 WRPGs, 2 ARPGs)
- 2 VNs
- 2 Simulators
- 1 Tactical

I suppose I could count that as 6 RPGs, really but now I'm splitting hairs.

Either way, I, uh, work in Godot, and have ever since Unity and I disagreed for the last time (nearly three years ago). It's free, it's adaptable, and it turns out I like Python/LUA more than C#. If you ever plan on getting into using the Godot Engine, I'm more than happy to help out if you've got any questions about stuff. I've been through enough of the system's oddities to do know the answer to a lot of questions, and most of all, I actually know how to use the GUI nodes.

Regardless, it'll be fascinating to see what comes up in this thread. I've always liked reading gamedev threads, so maybe this time around I'll actually put some stuff out there.

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I do most of my dev projects under a different name -- for the most part, ManxomeBromide just plays games -- but I've got a live ROM hacking project where I'm trying to tear the secrets out of the heart of the 1986 shooter Zanac. This was one of the first, if not the first, shmups with a concept of "rank" or dynamic difficulty and most of the strategy guides for it and secret descriptions tended towards the "superstition" side of things, with only a few solid facts.

I'm not really any closer to that than when I started, but in order to figure out what it does I've had to go real deep into the code and content. At this point I've published a full map rip, graphics ripping tool, and map specification document. The maps in this game are enormous -- well over 50,000 pixels tall sometimes. It still looks really good, too:


The RAM map keeps expanding at Data Crystal. At some point I'm going to run out of RAM locations that aren't related to rank, and then the mystery will be solved.

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i am unable to not have a dozen balls in the air hitting me on my idiot head at any time so i am currently working on:

1 visual novel
1 choicescript game (which i suppose is like a vn...)
2 fremblem-style srpgs
and 2 rpgmaker jrpgs, one of which is a rewrite of a game i have very intense mixed feelings on

The vn is in renpy, though I'm still getting all the plot for each of the four paths outlined and need to hammer out a lot of details before i start getting deep into the dialogue.
The choicescript game has one path of the first day complete; I'm struggling with the remainder, unfortunately. Even having a "merge" point with each day still leaves a metric ton of stuff i need to track across the story.
The first srpg i've had to put on the backburner since it has ideas i don't have the ability or cash to implement. The second is much simpler, though the limits of the lex talionis engine are such that all the visual assets i need to make are slowing me down a ton (i can't just reuse existing stuff, since i plan on selling it). I am. Not fast at pixel art, but especially not animations or gba-sized assets.
The two rpg maker games are extremely backburnered for the same reason as the first: I'm broke and don't personally have the programming skill required for what I'm trying to do.

My brain is kind of kicking around another rewrite game but I refuse to chase the idea since I've no idea where it would go and don't need to add more to my plate. :shibe:

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Well VN friends, I'm always happy to playtest/proofread/give feedback. This also goes for QA for RPGs and platformers, since I'm the type of person who absolutely loves to push the limits of normal behavior within an engine.

As for me, my current project is a JRPG, using the Godot engine as recommended to me via Twybil. Vector sprites and backgrounds because as much as I love 32-bit, scaling is fucked on modern devices. I'm starting very simple with it. Two (maybe three, depending on player choice) characters in the first area of the game.

Character lineup for the first part:

The protagonist. Depending on player choice she can fit any role in the party, but the easiest playthrough will probably be the one where her class is Warrior. Not so much the one where her starting class is Puppeteer (low phys defense, high magical defense, high but not high enough to avoid absolutely everything evasion, low HP, starts out only being able to do AoE mental status effect stacks with high hit rates,) but that's also the one where your second starting party member is pure DPS.

The other starting party member. He starts out being a jack of all trades/master of none, somewhat like a mix of a Merchant class and Freelancer in FF3/5. He can sit in your front row or back row, but should probably be put in your back row most of the time for safety's sake (One of his starting weapons is a pistol, and he can't equip heavy armor. His evasion is decent. If you put him in the front row with his starting rapier he can use Parry to reduce/deflect some damage.) But that's only with most versions of the main protagonist. On the path where you picked the Puppeteer he's effectively an Antipaladin murder machine instead, kind of like a Dark Knight. He both deals and receives more damage from Light-aligned opponents, so fights with them will absolutely turn into a damage race.

Speaking of the Puppeteer's path, she gets a third party member who is a necromancer (he prefers the term "necromaker," thank you, he only romances the living.) He can summon a variety of meatshields for your squishy party and also maybe some Beholder-type things to eyelaser from the back row.

In most paths, your starting fight is against some wolves who are after your barrels of salt pork that your childhood friend is taking to the nearest trade hub. In the Puppeteer's path, your starting fight is against an angry pitchfork mob of townspeople who have decided that you and your friend are dark sorcerers and need to be cleansed by fire. As it turns out having mind powers kind of sucks compared to being good at bashing stuff with swords.

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In general, I've been playing around in my head with a different idea, though I'm kind of torn between two different story designs for it as well as some of the mechanics. Still, it's just the honeymoon period for it- I'll have to see if my enthusiasm regarding the idea lasts.

Presently I'm in a sort of rough spot story-wise with my present project, and it's really quite bothering me. I have semi-developed ideas for it, but they all lean on the darker side as per the mechanics and my depressed brain's natural tendency to write dark stuff. In general, (and particularly right now,) I lean towards wanting more whimsical, lighter stories. The kicker is that I've been programming this thing for nearly a year now and it's almost out of the framework stage and onto the content work. Part of me would hate to put it aside given all the work I've put forth on it, but the other part would rather me drop it and switch to something more whimsical. (Actually, a good number of my hangups with my various ideas are because of this specific issue.)

Sunk-cost fallacy is a hell of a thing.

Anyways, I've been doing some low-poly model work and considered starting a thread for it, if anyone's interested.
I always have issues getting away from the 1000 triangles range though, though I suppose I need to start leaning a bit on the more abstract side and stop going for literal so often.
ClyncyeRudje wrote:
Mon Aug 10, 2020 12:31 am
I'm broke

I've got two projects in my head as effectively dream projects, and though I have the programming skill for maybe one of them, I don't have the time or budget for either.
Tanegashima wrote:
Mon Aug 10, 2020 1:04 am
as much as I love 32-bit, scaling is fucked on modern devices.
Coming from a sprite artist who loves lower resolutions, ain't this the damn truth. It's a special zone of screwery that's not nearly as easy to get past as modern lack of support for palettes.

I hope Godot's working out for ya though. It's maybe not always had everything I've asked for, but it's far friendlier than Unity was about it all. That, and if I wanted something, there's always plenty of space to build it.

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Mmm, I've also got several design docs that lead me to choice paralysis, and I normally futz around in GameMaker Studio 2, although Twybil here has bitten me with the Godot bug, since, omigod, it has isometric tiling right out of the gate, and you can edit tiles as if they were objects, collision boxes and all! So, apart from hurdles, and building up a codebase (which I'm planning to do over the next week, thanks to this lovely set of recipes, I'm trying to work out how to save even more work by having animation keys for tiles (theoretically do-able), say... Doors which open/close, show they're locked with an icon, and unlock.

Theoretically, this can work by detecting if the player wants to collide with it, and going through its own script (for single objects, I usually find it better to run event triggers on the object, rather than the player, although I'm not sure with this one), but, obviously, I need to test this.

However, this hasn't stopped me from futzing with things in an amusing manner, so... Have an attempt at an Itano Circus from my Unity futzing days.

First, how it went horribly wrong (or right, depending on your perspective)...


And then, working roughly as intended.


Beautiful :allears:

EDIT: God-dammit, I still have this project, and am now trying to work out how to make them spiral off each other, so as not to have them in a clump.

EDIT 2: Given up on that for now, I know roughly what I have to do (get the first collision point, transform off the normal as absolute basics, maybe rotate around the missile for added flair), but it's like pulling teeth.

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JamieTheD wrote:
Mon Aug 10, 2020 1:55 am
Mmm, I've also got several design docs that lead me to choice paralysis, and I normally futz around in GameMaker Studio 2, although Twybil here has bitten me with the Godot bug
The temptation to link an Ace Attorney gif is strong here, but I'll resist for now.

Getting the doors to show they're locked should be as simple as including another sprite node for the lock icon that is set to fade in or out/ change visibility properly. It could also be done simply as part of the door's texture as well.

As for event triggers, you can go it either way, though I'd personally rather make the event happen on the door object here. In this case, if there's a lever or a button that could also open the door, it's as simple as just calling to the door's event.

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Prototyping stuff, ready to get stuck into an isometric type project, and... Woo, tiles work! (Disclaimer: With some fuckery due to edge cases on visibility with only two tilemaps.)


Doesn't matter, walls and windows would all be grouped as walls, so they wouldn't affect "Can I walk this way (Y/N)?"


Yes i'm turn it into a real game, kind of, making text analysis work in a way that's semi-universal in a pain. (It's obviously not gonna work as universally as the LP, where even the basic rules i defined were broken regularly)

Also it's browser based for the primary benefit of it easy to share and have anyone play

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I mean, leave it to goons/beach bums to stretch the rules wherever possible.

Meanwhile, I've been caught up still working on finishing that framework I had, but of course my ideas for other things have come back for some reason. All the while I've been busy with tabletop and LP stuff.

gosh darn it headspace, can't you just stay consistent for once

one of these days it will, and I swear I'll make something good out of it

Cross posting this here, even though it's not a video game but a table top game.
The setting (which I've been working on for years but was more for a novel or a webcomic, before I realized it worked as a role-playing game)
Fundamental premise is that everyone (I do mean everyone not just player characters) has a supernatural power called a "Blessing" and a practically and/or symbolically related supernatural weakness called a "Curse".
Setting is pseudo-sci-fi in that certain technology is better in this setting than the real world (armor kind of looks halo armor but doesn't have the special shield shit, guns are slightly better, cybernetics exists but are limited)
They are monsters in this world, and basically anything outside of cities and surrounding farmlands (all artificial dome protected), is dangerous however both criminals attempting to escape the law, and scientist doing research (usually with guards) will go outside of the dome walls.
They are two countries you deal with a very controlling "orderly" society where peoples needs are taken care of,but people (aside from those with truly minor blessings) are assigned jobs, basic stuff like having kids requires government, and constant surveillance exists or in the "free" society were people have are allowed to choose careers, kids etc, however the government provides almost no services and cooperation rule the land.
TL;DR the two countries are Totalitarian Communist Government vs. Pseudo-Anarcho Capitalist (Though I will never use those terms in the books because I want to avoid real world political terms)
Your party is a military squad in the orderly society who deals with Monster attacks on civilians (certain people such as scientist need to leave the dome for purposes), hunting down criminals, and dealing with rebellions (the last one is suppose to be sometimes messed up)
I'll leaving out of a lot of extra detail I already have written down so if any detail has you curious let me know and 90% chance I've already thought of it.

Character Creation
First thing you do is assign your attributes, Attributes are separate in physical and mental, Attributes range from 0 to 5 for humans (with 1 being the average), they are all start at 1 for Physical and 0 for mental. Your physical stats will be higher, to represent most of your training being physical
Physical Attributes are: Strength, Fortitude, Dexterity, Reflexes
Mental Attributes are: Intellect, Judgement, Willpower, Social
The next thing you do is your blessing. You have an amount of points to modify your blessing. Choose from a list of "Base Powers" with a point, then you get to modify the base power by like applying enhancements or limitations (just flat point mods). Note that you aren't quite just restricted to one Blessing in the truest sense, secondary aspects of Blessings are a thing (Shooting might come with fire resistance for obvious reasons etc.). All Blessings in this book will be limited to those the society would actually make a combat person (IE not pure utility blessings, incredibly minor ones, or blessings that could be more useful somewhere else (Ie teleportation of others)). Any points left over from your blessing are redirected into improving Attributes, Skills, a small collection of Merits, or Combat Skills.
After that you choose your curse, unlike blessings curses are free formed, just describe and discuss with your GM what you want your curse to be, and you two discuss specifics, duration, exact penalties to attributes and skills in certain situations etc. You get XP when the Curse matters (If you get a penalty and fail by that penalty etc.)
After that you assign your combat skills. They are only two: Melee and Ranged. Their is basically a sliding scale of how much you are proficient in each: 3 in both, 4 in Primary and 1 Secondary, or 5 in Primary and -1 Secondary. The last category requires GMs permission and GM is only suppose to grant if your curse makes you actively less viable in the secondary then an average person.
After that you pick your Skill Package. They are 7 options (and every player is required to pick a different one making this a group discussion is encouraged.): Medic, Navigation, Communication, Technical, Information, Tactics and Stealth.
After that you pick you pick 1 "Hobby Skill" which doesn't have do anything on your adventure (Cooking, Sewing, Painting etc.), just for fun defining your character.
After that all players Define 2 NPCs that they personally know are close to, then each player will choose 1 other persons NPC and say how they also know them.
After that the players as a group will define the city they live (while the boarder detials of society are pretty heavily defined individual cities are not specified at all for this exact purpose) along with a boss figure who gives you orders.

Other Mechanics
Skill rolls are d20 + Skill bonus.
Attack rolls to hit are d20 + Combat Skill + Dexterity versus the targets d20 + Reflex. Target wins ties.
Grid Based Movement.
Game cycle continues goes from: Mission -> Downtime -> Mission

Pie in the Sky Stuff
Yes i know it's dumb to already have Expansions in mind when you haven't finished writing the first one but I can't
I have several like extra books after the first, all of them deal with alternate campaign types rather then just expanding on the original.
-A Book where you play as a small mercenary company in the free society. (Will include rule for money and resource management, and includes Blessings that Orderly wouldn't make combat people but are still at least semi-viable for combat).
-A Book covering espionage and intrigue stuff for both the first societies. (Will include rules for spy stuff along with Blessings that specifically are beneficial for intrigue.)
-A Book where you play as a people in small tribe in a different part of the world isolated from the part you play in the main book, who need to find a way to use their blessing and curse to creatively survive in a world without technology and where they are monsters. Virtually every blessing that is not in the intro book will be included along with survival rules
-A book where you play as regular people in a modern day earth setting who mysteriously just got a blessing and curse (Like the small tribe book every blessing that is not in the intro book is included, along with rules about dealing with government agencies.)

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