Luke - Blog Post #4 - Content Planning

This Week's Overview

  • QA Testing
  • Finish Toxic Sewers Initial Map
  • NPC Dialogue Script First Pass

QA Testing

I took a couple of builds to official Champlain QA for the first time and it was a very positive experience. Most people liked the game's direction of humor, combat, and overall style. Testers were excited to see where this project will go. They also gave a lot of feedback on certain systems that got me and the rest of the team thinking. For instance, a couple of testers wanted to see more depth in the combo potential of the combat system since we have a canceling mechanic. Rob and I agreed that having mechanics to knock your enemies into the air and chase them with a jump would feel satisfying to the player. Next week, as a team, we will be exploring how we can implement this. Other testers wanted variations in attacking, whether it be a new weapon, more attacks, or some sort of ranged attack. We have new attacks in the works that we think will add a lot to the depth of not only combat but the movement also. We have mulled over whether or not a projectile would fit into our game. We like the idea of a melee-centric combat style, so if we are to implement a projectile attack than it would be unlockable later as a low-risk low-damage output kind of attack.

Finish Toxic Sewers Initial Map

I started the map of our first area last week with the intent to finish it. It was almost done, so I pushed it to this week to get done. The block out came together pretty well on paper, these plans will make creating the entire space, once we have the necessary tools, very quick. I transferred these on paper sketches of the map to a digital format so the team could view them. I connected each separate page in Photoshop and made them, somewhat, to scale to one another. It is giving me a great idea of how big this map really is, and I'm liking it for what we want to accomplish.

 Paper First Pass of Toxic Sewer Map

Paper First Pass of Toxic Sewer Map

The next step in building this map is to create a to create a totally to scale version in some digital program or on graph paper. The sketches were very fast to create but the scale will be an issue when I attempt to implement the entire map. I want to also revisit many areas of the map and redo them to create large spaces, right now I have created many smaller rooms where combat can be frantic in with more than a couple enemies. With testing, this may prove to be a fault with the level design.

NPC Dialogue Scripts (First Pass)

With so many characters and interactions planned already for the game, I felt it necessary to flesh out what these characters would actually say to the player when they went through their interactions. I find it strange to call it dialogue because our character is all but mute. The player will more or less be getting talked at by these characters throughout these interactions. The player character interacts through their lack of caring towards anything but frogs. I wrote 'dialogue' for the tutorial character, Dr. Lola, the Shopkeeper, and four one-off characters. This task took a lot longer to complete than I thought it was going to and these interactions are far from perfect and will need iteration to feel like truly real and be their own characters. However, this exercise in really creating some dialogue and fleshing out the interactions will go a long way in informing the direction we take the story and bits in the future.