Apologies for being late with the monthly summary post - I'd been hoping to wrap up Bat Egg first, and that's taken slightly longer than I'd anticipated (I'm still a long way from "full productivity").
The game's coming together fairly well, and I've decided to give it a little more polish than I was originally intending.
I'm also waiting to hear back on a licence query with the font that I've been using for the menu/logo. The licence permits any kind of commercial/non-commercial use that doesn't involve redistributing without written permission - I'd like to use the font for the in-game buttons, which would mean including the font itself in the game's data files, which technically would be redistribution and I'd like to get a proper thumbs up before doing so.
Gameplay hasn't really changed dramatically since the sphere-and-cubes version seen in the initial patron builds, but there are now tokens to collect (collecting all tokens will grant an extra life), the game now increases in difficulty over time, and it generates much more interesting level layouts.
Level generation needs a bit more work - rest points can spawn inside obstacles, and sometimes middle obstacles can be scaled/positioned in a way that doesn't leave a clear path (you can currently fly over the top of the top obstacles, but I was think of putting a ceiling in, so that'll have to be addressed).
I'm hoping to also add an implementation for generating vertical levels and have the last level of a difficulty wave be vertical.
I'm toying with the idea of adding a "doomwall" (I'm not sure what people normally call them, but that's what it is in Dino Run), which would force players to keep up a minimum pace in certain levels.
I've been working on some music that's not in the game yet, but that's something I'm hoping to address this evening.
Sounds need to go in too - I think I can get most of what the game will need from existing recordings/sounds (I'm planning to use the record scratch from the Penelope trailer as the death sound, and I think I can use the flag sounds I recorded for the Bonesweeper prototype as flapping sounds).
I'd like to add some particle effects for flapping, nesting, and bumping into obstacles to help give those things a bit more presence/weight (maybe also collecting tokens, but I feel like that's probably less necessary). In particular, the flap effect will help better communicate flap impulse vector better than the animation currently does.
I'm more or less happy with the nest model, but I still need to make a better branch/tree for the nest to sit in. Same goes for the rest point.
I'm also still deciding whether it's worth doing more background art. The initial concept was to have the game take place in a dense forest with lots of trees parallaxing in the background, but I'm kinda enjoying this yellow sky with clouds thing. The bushes in the main menu are almost readable as rolling hills, and that's got a nice feel to it too that might be worth bringing to the game proper.
Right now, I'm feeling like the rocks and the bushes don't fit together very well (aesthetically - they do OK so far as geometry goes), and I'm considering making some additional obstacles that match the rocks and creating a second environment (maybe a cave?). That'd help give a bit of extra differentiation between difficulty waves, but it also means a bit of extra work, so I'm leaving that decision for when there's fewer items on my todo list.
I'm also open to hand crafting some levels, but I want to get level generation to a point where I'm happy with it before making a decision on that front, since it also represents extra work.
Back in 2019, I was imagining that the game might have a narrative framing of being about a Bat Egg who wakes up alone one day and journeys to find their family. Given the context that I'm making this in, I'm not sure if that's still a good idea. I'll think on it some more, but in general I'm OK with not really giving it any narrative.
Anyway, that's where things are at right now. I'll put a proper call for credits out closer to release, but if you've played a pre-release build or want a different supporter name in the credits, shoot me a message!
Depending on how I go with music stuff tonight, I'll also try to get a start on the monthly summary post.
Thanks for your patience!