Himitsu Project devlog#4: Features variation

Bonsoir ^^

Two months have passed since last devlog, so it's time for a new one! Hope you had a nice spooky season, it's been a hard year for everyone. France just entered a strict confinement again, I'll do my best to make the best of it by working hard on my games. These past months I had several issues to focus on and took a bit of time to take care of myself as well so I haven't made as much progress as I intended too.

Pixel Boy and his brother have been busy working on their own game Quest of Graal, you can check it up here: https://pixel-boy.itch.io/quest-of-graal 

Even though there are no flashy new features to show, I took time to improve the implemented systems codebase to help make more variations and patterns.

1) Puzzle Mechanics

A while ago, I implemented switches to start making some puzzles, as I want the game to feature a lot of them to hide secrets. First I improved the code of the camera cutscene after activating something.

Second, I added a first variation, switches that activate when the player walk on them (instead of hitting them).

Then the fun begins, I made it so the system work with combinations, like telling which switches have to be activated or not. This will allow to a lot of variety later on (kind of like the system I had in Tako-San with torch patterns to reproduce). I also made sure that all of this work with the save system, so the state you left switches on is saved and you won't have to redo some puzzles after leaving a room or quiting the game.

In the last devlog, I showed you an early version of chests. I also made a variation of those for hidden objects on the floor. The action context button also change when you are near an invisible item. (The dialog box also show item name and quantity now thanks to Garrett!).

2) Formation Menu

As I mentioned before, in the game you can have a group of up to 3 characters that you can switch at all times. But that doesn't mean there will only be 3 characters to play! I decided to add a statue in the save lobby where you can change the formation of the group by chosing between the unlocked characters to add or remove characters. I had to rework the group system a bit to make it more flexible and also allow to keep only one character if you want to. Keep in mind that in some part of the story you will be forced to have some characters and won't be able to access the statue (as it will be very story driven).

As you saw in the chest gif, Garrett also helped me to make the dialog box work again. It previously was using the unity UI system, we decided to switch to using sprites as font directly to ensure that we keep the message box pixel perfect. It's still wip but we can already show the name of the speaker and a face.

You can talk to npc, and the system for making cutscene is also pretty much set.

While we are on the subject of UI, I also added an icon to show the character type in their stats window.

3) Battle System

Speaking of the battle system, I also reworked this system a bit. The previous system was pretty stiff, with hardcoded methods, I had to make it more flexible for later. I decided to use delegate methods, so I can dynamicaly change which move is tied to which action of the player.

After getting the system to work, I started to rework the code of actions to make them work with it, and start coding missing moves.

Clive (Protector class) coat shield works again, I reworked the air shield to make the player invulnerable and keep pushing the enemy while in air.

Jeanne (warrior class) already had a sword attack method working (not animated yet), I added her air move, which is a dive with the sword (sorry for now you have to imagine the sword ahah).

Mylene (Creator class) didn't had any move coded yet so I was able to start fresh with her. The creator class is the one who deal special damages, so her action throw projectiles depending on her equiped gear. She also have a charged attack who deal bigger damage. I haven't coded her air move yet. 

There is still many moves to code for each characters to have a rich moveset (kind of like Terranigma did), but the system to support it is there! I also took time to add weakness/resistance to the enemies. To encourage the player to switch characters, some enemies will only be weak to certain character type, in the gif below the enemy avoid protector class actions.

4) Note about Save me Mr Tako

If you follow me on social medias, you may have noticed a very important news last week. Nicalis was the publisher of my previous game, Save me Mr Tako, and they published this statement to announce that we are not working together anymore.

This means that they can't sell Save me Mr Tako anymore, they delisted it from all digital stores and the game can't be purchased. It's a great opportunity for me as I'll be able to republish the game and finally release the update with it. I decided to take time to add more stuff to the patch to make it feel more like a definitive version. It will take time to submit the game for consoles again, but I can't wait for you to be able to play a more polished and balanced version of Save me Mr Tako when it will return. Tako will be back and great news awaits!

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That's all for today! Working on Tako again means I won't have as much time as before for Himitsu, but I hope both projects can progress together. Let me know if you have any feedback. 

🐙Thank you for your support!  🐙

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