Update Number… Um, August.

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Still at it! Working on making my solo project presentable for screenshots and video, and this milestone is a frickin’ doozy.

Since you couldn’t really explore the world of Hex Gambit and there were only two environments, most of the textures and assets I used weren’t really modular. That means they couldn’t be easily re-purposed to save time on this new project, which is something I’m hoping to remedy for this game and for games to come by establishing “the” One Man Left aesthetic.

Making standard floors and walls, basic textures for bricks and rocks, stylized particle effects like torch fire and smoke puffs. I’ve never built 3D levels in professional setting or taken any classes, so I’m learning all of this by doing and redoing. I’m sick to death of thinking about boxes and cylinders and meters, but I’ve finally got a decent set of assets and a competent grasp of level assembly.

The hub world is almost in a shippable state, and which will soon make it the first thing in the game I can point at and say “that part’s ready”. After more than 8 months of learning and working on this thing, I’m really looking forward to that feeling.

Categories: Game 7

The Sticky Post of Progress

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Support This Insane Endeavor

Adam is working on his first solo project: a short action RPG with demons! Follow @onemanleft on Twitter, sign up for our mailing list, and check this feed to see what happens next. I won’t beg you for free money, but buying any of our games or game soundtracks gives me more time to work on this.

Current Working Features:

  • Full controller support
  • Spend mana to heal or use powerful shadow magic
  • 6 enemy types
  • 3 placeholder endless highscore arenas
  • Shop for equippable buffs and upgrades – 12 so far
  • Play any level you’ve unlocked at any difficulty
  • Earn more gold for upgrades by tackling harder difficulties
Categories: Game 7

The Announcement Milestone

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The basic gameplay loop and mechanics for my solo project are in, so now I’m working on making things prettier for a formal announcement with a title. Over the next few months I’ll be getting NPCs like Dinky the shopkeeper in and animated, polishing up some existing enemies and effects, and finishing my dialogue & cinematics system to animate the game’s intro.

Above is some WIP promo art to wet your whistle. One day my screenshots won’t be a bunch of gray boxes!

Categories: Game 7

Behold!

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Our heroine speaks with the… “shopkeeper” in the “hub world”. Fully functional, but fully not decorated yet.

Current Working Features:

  • Full controller support!
  • 2 secondary weapons
  • 6 enemy types
  • 3 placeholder endless highscore arenas.
  • Shop for buffs
  • Equip/unequip buffs before each level. They all work.
  • Change difficulty at any time outside of the levels.
  • Play any level you’ve unlocked at any difficulty (no enforced order).
  • When you talk to the shopkeeper, the camera goes whoosh.
Categories: Game 7

Progress Report 5

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Click to enlarge.

 I’ve figured out what a released version of this game will look like content-wise, and I’m thinking I can maybe do an alpha/Early Access-y thing this year.

I’ve got a little in-game merchant named Dinky now (above, a little lifeless at the moment), and my gold-for-buffs functionality is mostly working. Once the “earning gold” side of things is in and some dialogue/cinematic tools are set up, I switch back to combat and making things pretty. Most of the game is gray boxes atm. I’ve been putting off the art stuff because I pretty much know my way around that from Hex Gambit.

Now that the bigger picture is coming into focus, I’m feeling good about this. The dread of tackling something this ridiculous is being replaced with a little optimism. Unreal is pretty amazing.

Support This Insane Endeavor

Adam is making an action RPG with visual scripting! Follow @oneadamleft on Twitter, sign up for our mailing list, and check this feed to see what happens next. I won’t beg you for free money, but buying any of our games or game soundtracks gives me more time to work on this.

Categories: Game 7

Progress Report 4

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So now I have full controller support for the game itself and for all the menu UI I’ve added in. I’ve got a title, a third draft of story scenario, and a few arenas with unique spawners and layouts. The tricky thing now is to scope a game that’s small enough to make alone in a reasonable amount of time, but meaty enough to be worth people’s attention.

I’m editing my monstrous word doc today to make a road map from here to shipping. This journey started out asking “can I technically make a game myself?” I’m feeling pretty confident now that I can. Now I’m at the “are you really crazy enough to finish all this” part.

I think I can. I think I can. I think I can.

Support This Insane Endeavor

Adam is making an action RPG with visual scripting! Follow @oneadamleft on Twitter, sign up for our mailing list, and check this feed to see what happens next. I won’t beg you for free money, but buying any of our games or game soundtracks gives me more time to work on this.

Categories: Game 7

Progress Report 3

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I put in a little overtime to get that build ready for the bachelor trip and… we didn’t play it. Too busy having a great time on the Kentucky Bourbon Trail! A lesson I’ve learned over and over about myself: I don’t work on vacation. I’ll bring books and laptops and plan to get a little done, but it never flippin’ happens. Coupled with some baby care days on either end and a nasty bout of the flu, I hadn’t looked at the game for like 12 straight days by the time I sat back down to work this week. It was daunting, and a honestly little terrifying given the scope of things, but I’m finally back in the swing of things.

This week, I’m fleshing out better controls for the “customize loadout” UI, so I don’t have to stand over your shoulder and explain the eccentricities of the current setup. Once that’s intuitive, I’d like to sit down and think about how to get some people playing this early build.

If any of you are exploring Unreal (4.21) and tinkering with their native UMG controls, don’t waste your time like I did. Sure, you can move focus around the menu and click stuff with a controller without handling any inputs yourself. But it can’t really be customized or expanded upon, so it’s pretty useless.

Support This Insane Endeavor

Adam is making a game with visual scripting! Follow @oneadamleft on Twitter, sign up for our mailing list, and check this feed to see what happens next. I won’t beg you for free money, but buying any of our games or game soundtracks gives me more time to work on this.

Categories: Game 7

Progress Report 2

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Hoping to have a stark little hub room with a couple of portals you can enter to fight some demons by the end of this month. The “Bachelor Trip” deadline looms, and I’ve got most of the combat for my prototype squared away. Six enemy types are ready (if you count a turret), each with different behaviors/speed per difficulty. And they can handle stairs and pits now!

I redid a lot of my ugly, early scripts and converted all my AI over to behavior trees (which are super flexible, definitely worth taking the time to learn). Still need to get some basic menu flow up and running: Title Screen, Hub World, Mission Accept, that kind of stuff.

Support This Insane Endeavor

Adam is making a game with visual scripting! Follow @oneadamleft on Twitter, sign up for our mailing list, and check this feed to see what happens next. I won’t beg you for free money, but buying any of our games or game soundtracks gives me more time to work on this.

Categories: Game 7

Progress Report 1

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I have almost five enemy types working now, and have spent the last few days trying to design a smarter ranged attacker. I’d like the game to be top down, but not flat, so they need to be able to figure out pits and stairs. I made great progress on an enemy that could chase me around a flat level without getting stuck on walls or corners, but they went nuts when they saw stairs for the first time. Just went up and down them over and over. Close to cracking this now, though.

Of course, I could always just make a flat game with no stairs, but I like the challenge of trying this the hard way… For the time being.

And that’s the phase I’m in: make as many enemies as possible, so later I can just build some levels and mix them into interesting encounters. I figure 8-10 enemy types is a decent variety for the size of game I’m shooting for.

I’m going on a bachelor party road trip at the end of the month, and hoping to have some kind of a highscore level ready with a PS4 controller to get some early feedback.

Support This Insane Endeavor

Adam is making a game with visual scripting! Follow @oneadamleft on Twitter, sign up for our mailing list, and check this feed to see what happens next. I won’t beg you for free money, but buying any of our games or game soundtracks gives me more time to work on this.

Categories: Game 7

Sup

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So Alex is happy at his new full time gig, and he lets me pick his brain every so often. In one such brain-picking session, I asked him whether it was feasible to make an entire game in Unreal’s visual scripting system, Blueprints. He said yes, then he probably qualified it with some important information, but my mind started wandering at yes.

Could I, with 9 years of game design and game art experience, but VERY little coding experience really ship a whole game all by my damn self? And even if I’m capable of it, do I actually have the determination and savings to finish what I’m starting? I think so?

I’ve been learning Blueprint full time with YouTube and books since November, and started working on a game in December. I’m accepting contract work where it pops up, but I work better when I’m focused, so I’m not really “hunting” very hard for it (here’s my portfolio if you’re interested).

I don’t really know where this will end, but I’m hoping to at least become a lot smarter, or at best be able to continue making games full time.

So What’s the Game?

It’s a dual-stick action RPG, a bit heavier on the action side than the RPG side, from one of the makers of Tilt to Live.

Tonally, I want the writing to be something along the lines of Adventure Time or Undertale, goofy at times, but not hollow. I wrote a whole scenario for it, decided that would take too long to make, so I came up with a shorter “Prologue” to start with. I’ve got a general timeline roughed out, and I’m trying to keep the art style impressionistic, so I can make more assets with the limited time I have.

Rather than crowdfunding and all the promises and pressure that entails, this’ll be a finished, low-price, 2-ish hour single player game that you can buy and play and enjoy. And if enough people buy it, maybe I can build the larger, original scenario.

So far I’ve got three bad guys and a hero, I’ve got controller support working, and I’ve got multiple difficulties with interesting differences in enemy speeds/attacks. Let’s see what happens.

Support This Insane Endeavor

Follow @oneadamleft on Twitter, sign up for our mailing list, and check this feed to see what happens next! Nobody knows! I won’t beg you for free money, but buying any of our games or game soundtracks gives me more time to work on this.

Categories: Game 7