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Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Dungeon Colony Version 0.1.9.99

Today's version (v0.1.9.99) extends the recently updated quests. Now, the level editor allows the level designer to associate quest rewards to a quest. This is optional and a reward can currently be any kind of object that exists in the game. A count can also be set to specify a specific amount of reward:

When the player completes a quest, the reward is placed in a special reward-crate. This crate allows the player to select the reward from the crate and place it anywhere on the map. Eventually, the rewards will be extended to include more than one kind of reward as well as other types of entities, such as creatures or abilities.


Here's the change-log summary: Other changes include:
  • Improves Error Catching for Video Card Issues.
  • Adds Quest Rewards: Quests can now reward player with different types of rewards. 
  • Adds Reward Crate: Rewards are delivered in a special Reward crate. 
  • Adds Rewards Management to Level Editor.
  • Extends Server Database to incorporate Level changes made over the past weeks. 
  • Adds new server methods to load/save Level data. 
  • Code Cleanup and Refactoring
  • Some visual additions 
  • Extends quit-game frame to return to main menu.
  • Adds new frame to select tutorial levels.
  • Extends textbox control.
  • Fixes bug with projectiles.
  • Fixes bug that caused enemies to spawn like there's no tomorrow.

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Dungeon Colony Version 0.1.9.91


Today's version upgrades many Quest related classes and simplifies/refactors a lot of code. This was especially good to make the level editor easier to use. It's so much easier now to create a Level and add quests to it than it was ever before. I've also added a few new quest types, such as giving creatures a goal to reach a certain tile location. This will be very useful for quests where the player will need to reach a region like mining through thick walls to find a specific resource for example.

While upgrading the quests, a lot of older code broke, which let me to just scratch all the old quests in the Sandbox game mode and redo them. So I made them a little bit more descriptive, not wasting too much time there, since my main goal is to continue on the tutorial levels. Quest information in now displayed in a new quest window centered in the middle of the screen. Hovering the mouse over the quest buttons shows the quest info window:


The next thing I will add to quests are rewards.

The summary of changes in version 0.1.9.91:

  • New Quest Window Centered in screen when hovering over quest buttons
  • Adds Question Tile Locations
  • Unifies quest class and deactivates unnecessary quest classes.
  • Temporarily restricts leg traps from being replaced. realized that this caused a new bug.
  • Editor: Adds more missing logic to Quest Manager.



Thursday, December 5, 2013

Dungeon Colony Version 0.1.9.83

Today, I continued work on the Editor mostly. There were also some bugs I fixed that the bug tracker logged (thank you for testing). So short and sweet, here are today's changes to version 0.1.9.83:

  • Editor: Grow Trees with one button click.
  • Editor: Fixes Rendering Bug
  • Editor: Adds Button to clear grass.
  • Editor: Adds ability to draw fog of war.
  • Bones decay on/off switch.
  • Fixes bug that allowed creatures to walk on water in certain cases.
  • Fixes bug when opening or using the level-up window.
And here a screenshot from today's development:


Tuesday, December 3, 2013

Dungeon Colony Version 0.1.9.74

This version (v0.1.9.74) fixes a few critical bugs caught by the automated bug tracking system thanks to the Alpha testing done by you guys! Thanks!! These occurred when a player transferred items from an object like the cooking pot, furnace or alchemy bar and the game would just crash randomly. Another bug was that players could craft bones from wooden planks... yes I left that in by accident!

This post is rather short but if you want more eye-candy, check out my last post.=)

I'm helping decorating for the holiday season this year...

Tis the time of the year and everyone is decorating so felt obligated to contribute this time and start making snow flakes. If you want to give it a try download the templates here.

I love the flames behind Vader's head.


I've made a couple so far, and it's becoming easier each time, but as you can see I've made a bunch of mistakes in the process. The most important thing is to have a good sharp knife and a solid surface to work on. It wasn't convenient either that my printer ink just ran out and the template wasn't visible all the way.


Cut out the round template shape and then fold it on the lines on the template, folding it into accordion shape and leaving the gray shades on top, so that you can see where you will have to cut. (There are better instructions on the web if you search for it ;-p)


 Once everything is cut out, be veery careful taking it apart. It is very fragile.

While unfolding, also try to fold into the opposite direction to get all folds rather flat. Finally you can place a heavy book on top of the completed snowflake to flatten it for a while.

Next I will try the storm trooper.

Sunday, December 1, 2013

Dungeon Colony Version 0.1.9.70

For those of you who live by North American traditions, I hope you survived Thanks Giving. Even though I live in California, I don't originate from this part of the world. However, I've been doing quite a bit of Thanks Giving stuffing myself and found little time to work on Dungeon Colony. In the end, I still managed to get a release (v.0.1.9.70) out tonight which brings some new additions and bug fixes.

If you have followed my previous posts, you know that I am working on new levels (tutorial and campaign). I am working behind the scenes on the Tutorial which means Alpha Testers won't see any such progress until it's finished. Parallel, I am also adding other new features that can be tested immediately. Today I am adding new objects: Bones.

Bones are remains that enemies (currently only Bandits and Archers) leave behind. After their corpse disintegrates, bones appear on the ground. The following screenshot (click to enlarge) shows these new bones in action:

 At the moment, bones are pretty much useless and just look neat. Though, in the near future, bones will become a useful resource that your minions should collect.

This version also fixes some bugs and other logical issues.

Sunday, November 24, 2013

Dungeon Colony Version 0.1.9.65

This week's update (v0.1.9.65) brings some new features to the game engine. Much requested and finally here is the ability to select multiple creatures by dragging a frame around them. In most RTS games this is a standard which was waiting on my ToDo list for quite some time. Now, you can drag a frame and any 'friendly' creature that is in the frame will be selected. You can then issue commands to all selected creatures such as walk-to or attack target.

Adding this ability messed with the current control elements of the engine. Selecting walls to mine, for example, was negatively impacted by the change. So to make things more streamlined, I changed how the player can command minions to mine, lumber and in the near future also dig.

The following screenshot shows these changes:

1. To mine, simply click on the pickaxe tool button and then click on any wall.
2. To lumber wood, click on the  ace tool button and then click on any tree.

There are alternate ways to mine and lumber wood. For example, you can also select a creature and then right click on a wall or tree to start the command. Finally, if you have a tree selected, right clicking on the selected tree will also issue a command for any minion to lumber.

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Dungeon Colony Version 0.1.9.57


   Now that the level editor is integrated and running I've built my first level and it worked without issues - for the most part - and I'm very happy with the results. When a level is done, I reuse the same algorithm for storing saved games to store levels from the editor, which will be great to distribute the levels from the server.
   I wanted to play around with it and create something different in terms of what the Map Generator usually spits out. The maps from the generator are to a certain extend predictable, well ... they should be to me, since I designed it, but the point is that I wanted to create something that the generator cant do. I started with an inside-only dungeon level - so no opening to the outside world. The good thing is the game didn't crash =). But the minions started acting very strange after a while and that helped me find a bug. I can see that the editor is going to help unleash a lot of new bugs and make the engine more robust.

   The next goal: I am going to start making the first tutorial level. It will be a basic level explaining navigation and commands. But before I start on that, I need to finish hooking up some of those features that make it possible to create goal oriented quests. Most of it is already done, like the quest manager and the quest tree. But I left out some time-consuming data entry tasks to fill out all the options and didn't finish every feature that will probably be required for the such a simple level.

I will post the progress of the first tutorial level. In the meantime, play version 0.1.9.57

doodle from the editor:

Sunday, November 17, 2013

Dungeon Colony Version 0.1.9.52



Today, I released a new version: 0.1.9.52. The main addition is the level editor and its progress was tracked right here. I spend the last 8 days or so fixing many loose ends. There are a few things left to implement which will be the focus this coming week. At this point, the editor is only accessible by my team. We are working on testing the core features and will begin using it by creating a few tutorial levels.

This round of alpha testing will help us to make sure that the core game engine was not broken during the implementation of the game editor. That is because I build the level editor right into the game itself. It will allow much more useful level design =)

This update also brings many bug-fixes caught by the alpha-tester bug-tracker, Thanks for Testing!!. Additionally, there are some requests made by the alpha testers to which I responded directly:
1.) Usernames can now use '_' the underscore in game. 2.) Enemies carry more than just gold, they can also carry certain types of food. That varies by enemy type. 3.) New UI elements that help explain game features. 


Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Game Editor Progress - Quest Manager

I began work on the Quest Manager not too long ago. This is going to be some beast. Not only does it require a flexible graph structure (see screenshot of sketch below), but it also must be easy to use and have many different options to create a wide variety of quests. To see the entire progress of the editor click here (updated regularly). Also visit DungeonColony.com/Download to try the free alpha.

I created a few new controls to make the Quest Manager more efficient, which are a Dropdown list and TextArea. This is definitively reinventing the wheel. But there's something about doing things from scratch. I like to think about it like LEGOs, when you have a set, you get excited about building something from scratch, it would be super lame if the set came pre-built. I think for many, more than half the fun is in building:



With those I started working on the new Quest Manager Frame:


This will allow the user to create a series of quests for the current map being built. The types are very flexible and over time I will add new types. For now I'll work with those monotone colors. Eventually I will improve the look.

Next I will work on the preview Screen. It just shows you how the quest will look before you create it. Additionally, there is also a Show Graph button. I am very excited to start working on that, since it will be a GUI representation of the Quest Graph. I have no idea how challenging this will be, but I can wait to find out.  It will have to be something that works kind of like this:


Also some doodles:

Sunday, October 27, 2013

Game Editor Progress - Entity Editor and Settings

You can track the progress of the game editor right here. You can also download the free alpha here. And please, support Dungeon Colony by pre-purchasing the game and setting your own price. Every coin you contribute is reinvested into game development.
Thank you!


The game editor is coming along very well: I finished the level settings and have completed the basics for editing game entities. The following screenshot (click to enlarge) shows these two additions:


1. Entity Editor
On the left side is the new entity editor frame. This allows the user to select any entity on the map (creatures and objects) and edit their individual attributes. You can basically make a creature extremely strong and create a boss, for example. The attributes that can be edited depend on the entity type. And each available & editable property will be shown to the user when selected.

And a special feature allows the user to edit the attributes of entities that are shown in the toolbox instead of entities that are placed on the map. This allows you to preset attributes and then place a copy of the same object in bulk on the map. This should allow creating complex maps much faster.

2. Level Settings
On the right hand side of the screenshot is the new Level Settings frame view. This allows the user to select level settings such as enemy waves, air requirements, & dungeon entrance.
  1. Enemy waves on/off: Allows the user to create a level that does/doesn't include enemy waves.
  2. Creatures need air on/off: Removes the need for Air. That is useful when creating maps that don't have the outside world. 
  3. Dungeon Entrance on/off: Doesn't require an entrance to the outside world. 
What's next:
Take a look at the current Todo-List to find out more. But at the time of this writing, I started on the Quest Manager. There is one already built into the game, and when you play the sandbox mode, quests are currently being displayed in the upper left corner. I will extend this existing Quest Manager to include a way for the user to create quests and assign them to a quest tree. The tree itself will not be a simple tree structure, but a directed acyclical graph with nodes that represent quests and edges that define quest relationships. This task is already quite big on paper; so I'm expecting this to take a few days of work to complete...

Here's a sketch of the quest tree manager:

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Game Editor Progress

Here's a screenshot of the improved ToolBox I just finished. This shot shows some of the tiles that can be drawn onto the canvas


New improvements...
  1. Allow moving the frame around making it easier to work with. 
  2. Increase the height and add an additional row of content in the table.
  3. Add the logic to the light switch button. That turns on/off the shadows so that working in a dark dungeon is easier. 

I updated the ToDoList to reflect those changes.

... on to the next item... 


Sunday, October 13, 2013

Task List for new Editor


The following is the list of tasks needed to complete the Game Editor (somewhat in order & some subtasks removed). Note: during development of the game editor, no new updates are being pushed to the alpha version available online. Alpha development will resume once the editor is complete.
 
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The Task List (Last Updated 11/17/2013):
I'll update this blog entry every time I make progress to the editor marking red items as pending and green strike through as completed:
  1. Fix all special editor entity placement rules that require map validation . (i.e. torches, doors, etc.) (9/9 Rules Completed + 3/3 SubTasks Completed)
  2. Create new image button sprites for Side Menu options.
  3. Create logic for UI Buttons on Side Menu.
  4. Allow placing of entities in containers.
  5. Allow dragging of entities to other places.
  6. Allow rotating of entities on map.
  7. Add button to show tile types & grid.
  8. Allow placing granite inside dungeon.
  9. Allow user to set specific features on/off.
  10. Map Validator:(Multiple validation items)
    • DØNE: Validate air on map (source, spread, ...)
    • Deferred: Dungeon Validation
    • Deferred: Enemy Waves (can reach dungeon)
  11. WIP: Build Level Class & Manager
    1. Build Level Chains
    2. Store Levels on Server
    3. Load Levels from Server
  12. Create Entity Editor to edit specific entity attributes.
    • DØNE: Build Frame to Display Entity Information.
    • DØNE: Extend Entity classes to manually edit entity fields.
    • DØNE: Allow editing of Entities already on map or the entity in the Toolbox. Editing Toolbox entities allows placing unlimited entities with the same edited attributes.
  13. Build quest manager UI (4 Subtasks)
    •  New Quest Frame
      • DØNE: Create Dropdownlist Control
      • DØNE: Create TextArea Control 
      • DØNE: UI Frame controls for setting Quest Attributes
      • DØNE: Controller logic for the MVC pattern of UI.
      • DØNE: Edit, Delete Quest Nodes
      • DØNE: Edit: load quest into form

      • DØNE:Subclass Quest Specifict Attributes
      • Deferred: Preview Quest.
  14. Build DAG for quest chains.
    1. Create Canvas for displaying Quest Nodes
    2. Create Quest Node Buttons which can be clicked to open up the Quest Details
    3. Allow Dragging of Quest Nodes
    4. Allow Dragging of Quest Node Canvas (moves all nodes at once)
    5. Connect Nodes which are linked.  
    6. Improve nodes (size, info, ...) 
  15. Deferred: Extend Research Manager UI (2 Subtasks).
  16. Implement the Map Load/Save Screen.
  17. Disable certain game frames in Editor.
  18. Deferred: Fix game main menu when using editor.
  19. Fix home menu to include editor. 
  20. WIP: Build Class to store Map as Level on server.  
  21. WIP: Build Class to create/store Campaign (level tree)

Beginning of Dungeon Colony 0.1.9.x - Level Editor

Version 0.1.8.x is now officially finished. The significant improvement was reducing the size of tiles, allowing different sizes of object. This change added new dimensions for game play, strategy, and better dungeon design.


Now that this version is completed the question is, what's next?? There are still some important game elements missing (tba). However, the basics needed to create a full working game are now finished. Therefore, the next version (0.1.9.x) will bring a new engine element that allows content creation - a Game Editor. This will allow me to start building the main quest for the game. Players will have a choice to continue playing the sandbox mode or play the new quest mode.

I have started on the editor and, so far, I have a clear canvas to draw stuff on the map and I created a new content window that acts like a toolbox. In the window, you can select object which you can drag on to the map. The things you can select so far are tiles, objects and creatures. Objects can be rotated and removed; tiles, such as ground and wall tiles, can be drawn. And I added a lights on/off switch to show/hide shadows that are cast inside the dungeon.

Blank canvas to draw on + Toolbox with Objects and Tiles

Placement of objects and tiles, Rotation of objects and Light on/off switch


I am building the editor right into the game instead of making a separate tool. While it requires separation from the main game, including the editor into the engine should make level design more dynamic (i.e. cast shadows dynamically as you build a dungeon etc.)

Finally, due to instabilities from implementing the editor, this version won't be released until it is completed, but I will post progress regularly.


Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Dungeon Colony Version 0.1.8.224

Today's version introduces new craft-able items and makes a few improvements to the engine. Download the free open alpha version 0.1.8.224 now.

New Wood Collection

Wood is an important resource in Dungeon Colony. Many objects are made of wood, wood can be used as fuel for fires and light up rooms with torches. This version adds new wood objects that you can craft:

First, there's a new coal image that replaces the old placeholder I had created:

old:                  new:

Using wood planks you can now craft a stool for decoration:


 Also from wood planks you can now craft a new crate to store all types of items:
  
There are 3 existing types of stock piles to store rocks, stone bricks and dirt that your minions collect. This new addition adds a stockpile to store wood. Like the other stockpiles, the wood pile visually reflects how much wood is currently stored inside. The following screenshot shows the new wood stockpile with the left-vertical one being nearly empty and the one on top is completely full: 


New Minion Work Animations 

Until now, minions were using the same animation for fighting, building, lumbering, mining, etc. So this update brings unique animations to the different jobs minions perform:

Lumbering:
Mining:

 Building:


Summary of Improvements
  • Adds new art for the coal resource.
  • Adds new object Crate. This can store anything and has no restrictions.
  • Adds new minion- mine, lumber, build and dig animations.
  • Adds stool furniture.
  • Adds new wood stockpile which can store wood logs and planks. I also adjusted logic for storing wood so that minions choose the stockpile over other containers if one is available.
  • Fixes bug that causes index out of bounds exception when trying to place torches on walls.
  • Re-adjusts the target location for lumbering trees


Friday, September 13, 2013

Dungeon Colony Version 0.1.8.218


Today's version (v0.1.8.218) is another push towards a more stable game engine. The fixes that are listed below are for the most part logical bug fixes, resolving issues that didn't break the game, but which were wrong or not working.

I have some exciting new game objects and art work that will be added in the coming weeks. Some of which will lay the foundation for the next game feature.

I also began with the development of a game editor. I'm still sketching it out but instead of making it a separate tool outside or parallel to the game, I decided to build it right into the game. I think this will save me a lot of work and it could make level making more interactive. The game editor will be used to create the main quests for Dungeon Colony, but I am also playing with the idea to make the editor available to players. T


Improvements & Bug Fixes:
  • Adds messages to alert the player when certain actions aren't possible and prints a reason next to the affected object.
  • Fixes null pointer exception on Path-Searching.
  • Fixes bug with occasional incorrect shadows at dungeon entrance when generating maps.
  • Fixes a bug with Pathfinding in specific areas of the map. (Dungeon Entrance Special Cases)
  • Fixes a bug that caused dead bodies to become collision objects after loading a game. Fixed it by adding a necessary properties to the save functionality.
  • Fixes bug that didn't increase movement speed when upgrading that skill.
  • Fixes issue that caused minions to forget their orders in situations when they spott an enemy unit.
  • Fixes issue when a creature is stuck when standing on top of an object that causes a collision and due to the collision the creature couldn't walk or take commands to walk off the object.
  • Fixes Bug that allowed certain containers to accept resources that they shouldn't.
  • Fixes bug that made enemies clairvoyant by finding out where your creatures were, even if the enemy couldn't see them.
 Please like Dungeon Colony on Facebook and support game development and name your own price to secure a copy of the game.

Thank you =)

AND HAPPY FRIDAY13th!!!

Saturday, September 7, 2013

Dungeon Colony Version 0.1.8.209

The food chain in Dungeon Colony hasn't been feeding your minions well enough in the past. To provide more nutrition, I updated the boars logic, allowing boars to reproduce. You may have noticed that boars eat the grass in the outside world. Grass boars eat now helps them prepare for offspring and fill up their tummy before bringing a new specimen into the world. How much each boar must eat is dependent on the entire population of boars. That is the somewhat unnatural way of limiting their numbers. Therefore, if too many boars occupy an area, they will eat up the grass and slow down their reproduction process 'naturally'. 
If you leave an adult boar to feed on grass for a long period of time, then the meat yielded will be larger than if you hunt for younger animals. Boars also are smaller, slower and weaker when born.

Don't move and stay quiet,... you may be able to spot a Mommy boar with her suckling:


Here is the summary of changes to the boars (v0.1.8.209):
  • Game starts of with set number of boars, if the number of boars on the map drops below this amount, new boars will be added to reach the threshold again (given some timer).
  • Boars can now reproduce on their own. Boars have a foodCounter that fills up each time they eat grass. When full, the boar is ready for offspring. This produces a new boar and resets the counter to 0. The limit of grass to eat is increasing exponentially with the number of boars on the map. Additionally, a natural limit to their growth is equal the amount of grass available. If a large herd eats up all the grass, the food counter will fill up slower and produce less offspring.
  • Select a boar to find out how much more food it needs to eat until the next offspring arrives.
  • The new boar offspring counter for each boar is also stored when saving the game.
  • As boars grow, more meat is beomces available after killing the animal. Baby boars start with one meat. As a boar grows into adulthood, the fur resource is also added.
  • Growth rate to adulthood is constant per growth level. There are 4 levels to adult hood each requiring to eat 100 grass to reach the next level. Reaching each level increases meat output by one. Each level also increases how much food the boar can eat, how fast it can walk, and, as an adult, it also becomes stronger.
  • After adulthood, growing still occurs and more meat is added to the boar, up to a given threshold.


Other changes and fixes in this version:

  • Leg Traps can now be re-placed and moved to another location, or put back into storage if desired.
  • Fixes issue with collecting water and the activity of selecting a water tile to command a minion to collect water.
I have a new list of bugs that I will focus on next. But last night, I started working on a bigger new feature that will be the first steps into making the actual main quest of the game.

Thursday, September 5, 2013

Prototyping on Paper

Here's a snapshot of my latest doodles which involve one of my many side projects on the game. Can you tell what it is about? Hehe, I don't want to reveal everything I do, but some obvious ideas ? ... My sister convinced me to post more of my notes (I'm no good at drawing) and I'm thinking to release a few periodically, if that's something you'd be interested in?

I use these a lot to visualize things on paper first and to discuss with the others. That one, for example, I sent to my artist. Drawing ideas on paper, rather than prototyping them, often gives me more time to delve deeply into the design elements.


Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Dungeon Colony Version 0.1.8.203

I've reached version (v0.1.8.203). 0.1.8.x is growing mighty large and, in fact, it should already have moved on to version 0.1.9.x. However, since the major change in 0.1.8.x was fundamentally changing core game engine modules I decided to focus on fixing as many bugs affected by the tile size changes as possible. Once I feel like the engine is stable, I will begin development of the next larger feature and move to 0.1.9.x.

Therefore, today's update fixes issues that stem from the core engine changes and addresses many issues caused by doors in the game. There are three types of doors: Wooden, Steel Reinforced Fortified, and Iron Doors:

The first thing I changed was the life points of each door. The previous values were too low to prevent enemies from breaking through. The new values are 150 LP for the wooden door, 250LP for the fortified door and 1000LP for the Iron door. Especially the iron door can keep enemies at bay given it's iron properties.

Before this version, doors had several issues which have been addressed as follows:

Door improvements:
  • Balances Door health points, increasing each door's health to 150 for the wooden door, 250 for the steal reenforced door, and 1000 for the prison door.
  • Fixes preview of rotated door within a container cell.
  • Fixes rotating doors. Now doors can only rotate 180 degrees once placed. In the container the rotation steps are still 90 degrees per step.
  • Fixes placement of doors:
    • aligns doors to tile grid when previewing door placement.
    • will only allow doors to be placed
      • a): if no entity is directly colliding with the door.
      • b): if a wall immediate too the door's hinges (on both sides) is present.
      • c): when doors have room to open in either direction.
  • Fixes issue with enemies who get stuck when they face a closed door instead of trying to break them.
And a bug fix unrelated to doors:
- Fixes bug that caused a pickup behavior from not being deleted from the stack.

I am not happy with the doors in general yet. The look isn't 100% there yet, so I will most likely have them redone. Additionally, I also want the opening/closing animation to be a bit nicer. Plus they don't break the shadows, which is something of lower importance though.

But for now, that's it for doors and I will move on to boars to address issues mentioned by many alpha testers. There seems to be not enough of them.

Monday, September 2, 2013

Dungeon Colony Version 0.1.8.198

This update brings Dungeon Colony to version v0.1.8.198 and fixes a range of bugs. Additionally, a new indicator shows the player when a container is full.

Take advantage of Name your Own Price to pre-purchase Dungeon Colony and help with development costs. Name your own price will soon go on break, so if you like this game and would like to see it completed, this is the best time to show your support. Thank you! =)

Summary of Improvements:
  • Adds blinking indicator in inventory frame when the container is full. This applies to any type of container, also the bag each Minions carries.
Bugs:
  • Fixes bug when clicking the rotate button that allowed objects like the workbench or dining table to rotate into walkable objects on the map. While that seems valid, it prevents certain game play.
  • Fixes bug that prevented player from placing walls even though the target location was eligible for wall placing.
  • Fixes bug that prevented creatures from storing small objects laying on the ground into containers that have a size smaller than a game tile.
  • Fixes bug that caused minions to ignore stockpiles when collecting certain resource types from walls.
  • Fixes issue with objects when attacked the target property never gets cleared when the attacker is gone.

Thursday, August 29, 2013

Dungeon Colony Version 0.1.8.191

Dev-log from this week's nightly development brings Dungeon Colony to (v0.1.8.191):

- Dungeon Master leaves book stand when done researching a topic and displays a message to the player to select a new research topic from the list.
- Fixes bug that showed wrong warning message when trying to rearm a wooden spike trap.
- Fixes issue with collision detection and objects placement on map.
- Reduces the collision rectangle for stockpiles allowing creatures to walk over the border. This helps also fix bugs with certain games from alphas who reported minions being stuck due to stockpiles blocking the way.
- Stockpiles can now be moved and replaced once build, that is if they are not filled with too much material. If it's too heavy, then you will have to first move resources from the stockpile before moving the board elsewhere.
- Traps are now triggered by enemies and neutral units: Boars walking into a trap will trigger it too.

Play the alpha free, and if you like it, support development by pre-purchasing the game. Thank you =)

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Dungeon Colony Version 0.1.8.187

And I'm back into development mode. After spending the past view weeks on business aspects, I'm glad to be back to working on code. But I have also played some games including StarCraft and Civ and I finally tried FTL, which is totally right up my ally (plus it was on sale on gog.com).

It's insane how much you forget about your own code if you don't touch it for a couple of weeks. Not necessarily the code itself, but how modules interconnect and relate.

So today's version moves up a notch to (v0.1.8.187) and fixes a couple of bugs:

- Fixes issue with Minions AI when they try to find essential resources but can't reach them.
- Fixes bug when minions try to empty their inventory into a container.

Thursday, August 8, 2013

Dungeon Colony Version 0.1.8.186

This update (v.0.1.8.186) fixes a series of bugs and balances some game elements. Most of the changes have been available for a few days since I have silently released new versions to fix critical bugs. There has also been an increase in game traffic and, therefore, many more bugs reported. Again, thanks to all your playing and testing. Some of the main issues have to do with the AI and minions acting up. (I should really introduce the hand from Dungeon Keeper to slap the minions who behave badly)

Besides fixing bugs, I also went to the IGDA summit a few days ago and continued expanding on the business side of being an indie game developer. In fact, I will spend a lot of my time in the coming weeks focusing on business. For that, I want to thank all of the players who have supported the game so far. Once the business side is setup, I will begin expanding development into new areas. I am very excited about that, but that's all I can say for now. So don't expect to many game development news in the next couple of weeks.

There are two issues I want to mention as they have been reported frequently:
- Sometimes, minions are not able to find food or coins which causes problems with the AI. Also, the activity counters over the chest or dining table may increase to huge numbers due to a similar bug. (Thanks Karsten B.) I haven't found the bug yet, since I had trouble recreating it, but I suppose it has to do with the reach-ability of objects. If you can recreate it and if you save your game before it occurs, please let me know. Thanks!

Here is a summary of the changes/fixes since the last post:
  • fixes bug with dead spider sprites
  • fixes null pointer exception with minon-order locations when loading a game.
  • improves performance with pathfinder
  • fixes null pointer exception with order manager
  • increases food output of nuts from 10 to 20 points
  • removes fuel points from fur
  • re-balances flower growing algorithm
  • increases starting meat to 7 pieces
  • improves bug notifications to server
  • fixes bug that caused minions to be stuck when building walls over them (Thanks Johny193). 


Sunday, July 28, 2013

Dungeon Colony Version 0.1.8.176. Boars are back, but Flowers are new.




In my last post I released new grass objects so in today's version (v0.1.8.176) I am adding to that some new flowers (see above screenshot).

These flowers grow only in thick grass areas. There are several rules behind the growing behavior. For example, the flowers use the surrounding plant types to determine if the flower can spread there or not. This allows the game to generate larger areas of the same kind, but also limits these areas to reasonable sizes, meaning, the map should not be able to fill up completely with the same kind (though, impossible it is not). Boars now also like to eat flowers.

There have been a lot of bugs again this week which were reported by my alpha testers. Thank you again. I have seen an increase in the number of people play testing the game, and that seems to also correlate to the increase in bug reporting. But there are also some silly mistakes that I have made to increase complaints. For example, in one of last weeks releases, players mentioned that they couldn't find any boars. Well that was because of my change to test boar eating behavior, where I turned down the number of boars generated by the game to only '1' and I did that in order to see how much grass a single boar would eat over time. Or course I forgot to turn that back on. To sum this up, I now use a notepad to mark down changes that need to be un-done before a release is published.

Here is the summary of of changes in this version 0.1.8.176:

New Features:
  • Adds Flowers
Changes:
  • Refactors much code
  • Reduces new tree rate
  • Puts quest hint to quick start help screen
Bugs:
  • Boars are back.
  • Fixes 4 bugs with loading/saving the game
  • Fixes bug that caused game to crash if the recommened screen resolution was not found (thanks alpha testers)
  • Fixes a series of Null Pointer exceptions.
  • Fixes bug with FBOs


Thursday, July 25, 2013

Dungeon Colony Version 0.1.8.170

Today's update brings Dungeon Colony to (v0.1.8.170). Free Alpha Download!


Recently, we planted some culinary herbs at home and just yesterday they started spouting:
I don't really remember what seeds I planted into which container, oh well.

So in celebration of this amaazing new growth, this version update of Dungeon Colony adds new plant life to the outside world. For starters new grass patches grow individually over the otherwise bland grass tiles:
There are several different types of grasses that grow each with different growing stages(sizes). When they reproduce, they have a change to changing to another type, but that happens only in about 10% of the time, therefore making larger areas of the same species.

Boars eat grass to gain food points. If they don't find anymore grass they will starve to death. But there's plenty of it available. In fact, each grass patch is it's own entity in the game. In my last play, I counted over 7000 patches on the map. 

So this is the beginning of new plant life and more will be added soon. Of course, grass will not just be pretty to look at but will play a role in dungeon management and be a resource for new object types. But again, more to come. 

Additionally, this version fixes a lot of bugs found by the alpha testers. Here is the summary of changes:

New Features:
  • Grass, it grows.
  • Boars now lose food points and eat grass to refill them.
Bug Fixes:
  • Fixes text disappearing behind other controls when hovering for tooltip info (Thanks Liam)
  • Fixes bug that crashed game if the graphics card wasn't compatible with FBOs by showing an error message before starting the game. (thanks alpha testers)
  • fixes bug caused by null pointer exception when enemy AI was hunting down your creatures. (thanks alpha testers)
  • fixes bug in Graphics Option Menu. (thanks alpha testers)
Other:
  • Improves logic for selecting units or objects that overlap 

Monday, July 22, 2013

Dungeon Colony Version 0.1.8.161

This version (v.0.1.8.161) fixes a bug that I thought I fixed a long time ago and which was mentioned to me countless times: when you try to move a dead creature, the carcass is probably too heavy for your minions and when they arrive to try to pick it up, they will say "That's too much to carry". Well if your minions haven't carried out the command yet and if the carcass disappears after a while, the command still exists and can cause your minions to go nuts. To be honest, I didn't really fix the issue but rather patched it. That is because of my larger side project to replace the AI using behavior trees, which, hopefully, will take care of issues like that.

I also made a small visual change. Objects that you try to place in your dungeon, the rendering of the preview now appear below the shadows (except for wall-torches). Before previews would be rendered above the shadows in full brightness. That didn't help much the player and just didn't look that nice either. 

Currently, I have a few larger side projects. Like I mentioned, behavior trees are one, and the other is to upgrade the plant life. So I also began work on grass, flowers and herbs. Here is a sneek peek at some of these new sprite-sheet images:

I am working on the plant-reproduction algorithm, which is fun, well.. more to come.

Remeber to Play (free) and Like Dungeon Colony

Sunday, July 21, 2013

Update 57 - Dungeon Colony Version 0.1.8.158

Today's update is: (v0.1.8.158). This version is coming to completion, and I am soon going to move to 0.1.9 as soon as 0.1.8.x is stable enough.

This update brings a few new features that give you more information about your dungeon and the items you have gathered:

1. You can now see how much food you and gold you have collected. The Gold Count and Food Count are located above the game window:



It count's only food that is in a dining table and gold coins that are inside a chest. Food stored in a crafting bench or coins laying on the ground for example are not included in the count. Food count isn't showing individual food items, but instead its a sum of all the food points for each food item stored in the dining table. So if you have 2 items, say 2 stews, each valued at 50 food points, then the food point counter will show 100 and not 2.


2. The second feature adds an object info box to container and machine type objects, such as the chest, workbench or cooking pot and alchemy table. This info box displays more information than just the name of the objects:

 Depending on the additional attributes the object has, determines what will be shown in that box. Food shows food points, wood shows fuel point, potions show strength points, traps show uses remaining, etc.

Balancing
- Reduces meat food output from 500 to 200

Bug Fixes
- Fixes Bug that prevented food from storing it's food points when saving a game to the server.

Friday, July 19, 2013

Update 56 - Dungeon Colony Version 0.1.8.156

Hello, This update brings the following fixes, updates and balancing adjustments:
Download this free alpha built at: (v0.1.8.156)

Also, visit my new facebook page and Like it if you will =)

New Updates:

  • Randomizes cluster Sizes (AI).
  • Adds number of selected objects to machine type objects when selecting the output in an output frame.


Balancing:

  • Reduced output of lumbering trees.
  • Crafting walls out of 9 resources produces 3 new walls.
  • Reduces output of iron ore when mining rock walls.
  • Triggered traps do not cause collision for friendly creatures any longer.
  • Enemies now steal as much as 80% of their carrying capacity, instead of max 5 items previously.


Bug Fixes:

  • Fixes problem with Enemies when they attack or steal from an object. 
  • Nuts are not used as fuel in the cooking pot any longer. 
  • Fixes issue with Enemies attacking objects. 
  • Fixes issue with Enemy AI Behavior where they would get stuck in the grass-lands. 
  • Fixes issue with finding the dungeon entrance in enemy AI.
  • Fixes issue with machine type objects when ordering to remove a large number of objects but only few are actually taken 
  • Fixes inacuracy with selecting items in machine type objects. 

New Screenshots (2)



The first screenshot shows a recent construction of a larger Workshop I built in order to see how resource management balanced out:
Click to enlarge:

the second shows the new vegetation algorithm, which adds more diversity to growing trees:

Click to enlarge:


Download Dungeon Colony Alpha free at www.DungeonColony.com/Download

Thursday, July 18, 2013

1 Year Anniversary Dungeon Colony public alpha : new facebook page & new blog.

A few of days ago marked the one year anniversary of Dungeon Colony in open alpha.

To celebrate you will continue to be able to play the alpha for free a little bit longer. Additionally, I moved to this new blog and made a new facebook page.

Please like the Facebook page and share it with your friends: https://www.facebook.com/DungeonColony

It's been a successful year and I like the way development is moving forward. This is my first attempt at making a game and I can say it has not always been easy; dealing with the process of creating something from scratch without important experience has often put me back by either mistakenly recreating the wheel, or hitting roadblocks and needing to learn new concepts. That last part says it all, it has been a great learning experience and each moment of experimenting and creating is what makes this entire project worthwhile.

I hope you follow me in my efforts to create a dynamic dungeon simulation game.

Sebastian

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Behavior Trees

I have spend some time thinking about the problems I face with the game AI. To this point my 'expert system' is crumbling under it's own weight and it's time to make it more robust. This became apparent when enemies started behaving strangely. They start twitching horribly and you know that an enemy is trapped in some decision loop. Then there is the next game/dev feature that I am planning for, which will be an editor. Eventually I want to be able to script event's in that editor as well as build maps. Having a behavior tree in place seems to be ideal for scripting events. 

I started looking into some resources and the best I could find was the one everyone's been talking about: Alex's presentation [requires free signup as of this writing]. It's really well explained and he goes on about the second gen. Behavior Trees. I think I will start of with my own implementation of using the first gen method. The second gen methods are mostly performance improvements which, apparently, can be implemented later.

This site (Introduction to Behavior Trees by Bjoern Knafla) is also a good resource and he also points to Alex's presentation

My plan is to roll in the behavior tree alongside my current decision manager, by starting with npc creatures like the boar's AI. This should be an easy starting point, boars are not particularly smart :don't run into a tree and that's it (ok they can fight too). Then, move on to implementing the spiders, enemies, then minions and the dungeon master. Working my way up from simple creatures to more complex ones could help identify what type of Nodes I will need in the tree. The two standard and essential nodes are are commonly referred to as Sequences and Selectors. Other specialized nodes include Concurrent/Parallel nodes, Decorator nodes, Looping nodes, Randomized nodes, Weighted Nodes using some Machine Learning result...  

Sunday, July 14, 2013

New Feature Screenshots

The following screenshots show some of the new capabilities of the engine. You can place items anywhere and create more decorative scenes. I am going to start working on a level editor, which will allow me to make the the missions for the main quest. But I also want to open up the level editor to players.
Please like, share or favorite. Thanks =D
If you haven't tried the alpha yet and would like to contribute in debugging, balancing or just playing, feel free to download the alpha built at here. You may also back the game and make a financial contribution if you wish. =)
Spiders Den:
image
Hunter's Camp:
image
Treasure Trap:
image

Update 55 - Dungeon Colony Version 0.1.8.150

Greetings Dungeon Lords,

    I have been waiting for this moment a long time and I am happy to be able to post a new version again (v.0.1.8.150). As you will read, this version caused many bugs, and bugs seemed to appear exponentially. But most of them are now fixed and the engine has become more stable.

In the past, I had been releasing a lot new game features without tending to some other important game engine needs. Finally, I began tackling them a few months ago. The engine upgrades had been on my to-do list for quite some time, and I now regret not having started work on them earlier because the main issue here was that they concerned changing much of the core engine, which in turn affected almost every element, feature and game content created thus far. The only regret, really, (and my learning experience passed on to other game devs) is that of time and taking longer than needed, but nonetheless, it was tremendously fun to make the changes and see the engine improve upon it. As an independent developer however, and if you are one you will most likely agree, life often comes in the way of the thing you'd like to work on. For me, it was personal family matter, my day-time work, of course, including tight deadlines, but also a much needed break and a vacation to go back home to Europe and recharge the creativity batteries and get a bunch of new inspiration from some amazing landscapes and medieval structures. If you have been on my contact page, you may have noticed a picture of me there, in front of a castle. During my vacation, I finally hiked again to that same castle, a place of inspiration to which I used to go to constantly when I was younger.

A big apology to all Alpha testers who have already constructed big dungeons and saved them to the server: Anything saved before v0.1.8.150 is incompatible with the new engine; the changes in the game engine made it impossible (or way too much work) to be still compatible with the new engine. In the past, I tried to avoid that as much as possible, however, since this is still Alpha, and the main architecture of the engine is still not complete, this is something that is unavoidable and will still happen in the future.

Below is a rough summary of all the primary engine changes that were implemented since the last release.

The main objective was to improve three core features:

  1. Allow creatures and objects to be positioned freely on the map, regardless of the bounds of tiles.
  2. Allow objects and creatures to have bounds/sizes that match their image.
  3. Improve movement and path finding based on the two previous changes.

 

The game was originally based completely on large tiles, which also governed movement, object placement, object triggers, collision and much much more. The upgraded engine required granulation in tile size that affected nearly every class in code. Back when I started Dungeon Colony, the first thing that I defined was the tile sizes. Here is the first screenshot I made after a few hours of coding the game. image These are the different tile materials (stone, water, ground). The new engine is much more defined and can handle arbitrary sizes, removing the tile contraint and opening up amazing new game object possibilities than before. Size matters and brings new strategies to the player with regards to where objects are placed and so forth.

Reducing the tile size constraint also allows objects to have sizes that are bigger or smaller than a tile. For example, in terms of collision boundary, a rock is now around 8 times smaller than it previously was. This also reduced the selection boundary, the visible white rectangle that you see around a selected object on the map.

So far, I have never had that many bugs at once and with careful iteration, I managed to get the game back into a working shape, but I still need your help to find any remaining bugs left uncovered, especially when it comes to saving a game. I believe that there are still some bugs left that don't save objects properly.

 

Summary of changes:

Website:

I moved to a new web server which caused the website to malfunction for a few days. The only problem was the registration page which is now fixed again. I am also trying to decide on a community forum and looking for different services. If you have a preference, I'd like to hear from you. The website is written in .Net, so something that is compatible would be good.

Summary of Changes/Upgrades in version 0.1.8.150:

New Features:

  • Coal Resource: This resource can be found when mining Rock walls. It replaced wood as the fuel for the furnace. You can use coal to smelt raw iron into iron rods. Iron rods into steel plates. Sand into glass flasks, and clay into clay pots for water storage.

image

  • Sub-Tiles: Sub-Tiles allow objects to be placed with more precision on the map. This means that placing a chest for example does not have to be constraint by a tile anymore, but instead, can now be placed almost freely on the game map. The new sub-tile grid still constraints object placement to a certain extent, which gives the player pleasant feedback, when object stick to the area where placement is possible.
  • Cancel Orders: Allows players to cancel command by selecting the object that has been assigned a command to. In most cases a button will appear on the right hand side labeled "Cancel Command".

Upgraded Features:

  • Upgraded to LWJGL 2.9.0
  • Path-finding: Given the new sub-tile constraints, the path finding algorithm needed to be upgraded to work with smaller tile sets and with arbitrary object sizes. The new path add new strategic elements since placing objects can change the outcome of your tactics tremendously. A bit of optimization is still needed, but that's left for a future version upgrade.
  • Objects & Creatures resized: Nearly every object has been resized to scale better with the game world. Previously a log of wood or a pile of coins had been too large and misrepresented when laying on the map. Enemies also appeared to big and their bounding rectangle often extended beyond their actual position, which caused inaccurate collision detection.
  • Object & Creature selection. This improves selecting creatures and objects on the map. Moving entities, like creatures, does not require clicking within their boundary (selection frame), some tolerance allows you to select a creature even if the mouse is not covering the creature completely. However, non-moving objects do require the mouse to be intersecting the selection boundary.
  • Creature movement: Movement has also been updated with regards to the new subtitle system. Idle creatures walk slower and have slightly better intelligence. (more to come)
  • Light/Shadows: Light sources have been updated to match the new sub-tile position constraints.
  • Traps are now obstacles that your creatures can't walk over any longer. Unlike enemies and neutral units like the boars, your creatures still know where traps are placed and will walk around them. Placing traps requires more strategic planning since you can't just fill a corridor with traps for enemies to step in. You also need an open path for your creatures to pass by.
  • Lumbering wood: To lumber wood, you now select a tree and right click on it. This is the standard way to activate any object that can be activated. Similarly, you right click on a leg trap to re-arm it, or you right click on a patch of mushrooms to collect them...
  • Creatures recalculate path when following another creature and if the followed creature has moved a certain percentage away from the original target point of the calculated path.
  • Adds red attack indicator over target when a creature is attacking a target
  • When selecting a creature the crosshair shows the target center position if this position is walk able. If an object is selected, the target position is shown using the actual object sprite.
  • Placing objects over themselves is now possible. This allows to move larger objects by a fraction.
  • Changes the trigger area of traps using a reduced boundary than the selection boundary.
  • Increases stamina potion strength 10fold.
  • All friendly units return used/empty potion flask back to their original container after drinking them. If it was in the creatures bag, then that's where they stay. If the potion was taken from a container, like a chest, then it's returned back into that container.
  • Re-prioritizes eating before getting paid.
  • Updates tree growing and reproducing behavior. Trees grow slower and can only reproduce when reaching a certain size. Tree's also return different amounts of nuts given the size. And nuts are less calorie rich then before.
  • Allows player to place items outside of the dungeon.
  • Increases the uses of leg-traps.
  • Changes the recipes for certain objects (Campfire, firebowl, and bookstand)
  • Adds Alchemy bar to study items.  

 

Bug Fixes (unrelated to game upgrades)

  • Fixes bugs with new web-server and problems with the registration page
  • Fixes some issues when transferring objects to other objects.
  • Fixes many issues with attacking enemies, including facing enemies correctly, collision with enemies and other issues, such as enemies trying to attack each other when separated by non-walk able objects. Friendly creatures will ignore blocking objects while enemies will try to destroy them.
  • Fixes bugs with transparency issues in OpenGL drawing methods.
  • Fixes issue with consuming potions where health had to be lower than max. Also consumes only one at a time. Fixes button for consuming stamina potions for the workers.
  • Fixes issue where objects like the table rotated into other objects or walls.
  • Fixes bug when selecting items produced in the furnace, alchemy bar or cooking pot.
  • Fixes bug when the Frame of the Study moved after closing and reopening

 

I would greatly appreciate your feedback, comments or suggestions. You can reach me via twitter or check my contact page. Finally, if you haven't tried it yet, you can download the game free at http://dungeoncolony.com/Download. Support is always very much appreciated. 

Thursday, April 18, 2013

Dungeon Colony - Engine Update - new path finder nearly implemented

The new Engine Upgrades are coming along well. However, it is taking longer than expected since I am making some other much needed engine upgrades concurrently. But on the bright side, every change and every re-factoring will benefit in the end and it gets me more excited by the line. 

I continued with the implementation of the new pathfinder. It caused a lot of bad bugs or design patterns to emerge, and the bugs originate from some unfinished old code that needed to be refactored and completed anyhow.

Units are following paths again, but now much more precisely and with totally arbitrary sizes. That will allow me to make amazingly large creatures. Every creature's size becomes a clearance value used in the pathfinder to determine if a creature can walk a narrow space or not. That precision will become apparent in the next round of engine upgrades that I am currently working on, but I will explain those details when its finished. For now, I need to focus on fixing all the bugs and logic in all corners of the code where path planning is used. 

I spend the last hour or so adding social media buttons to this blog. So please share if you'd like =). 

Monday, April 15, 2013

Dungeon Colony - Engine Upgrade

This is another development update about the new Engine Upgrade I am currently working on.

Parts of the engine are very old, in fact, the original pathfinder was one of the first algorithms I programmed for the game. But it lacked a lot of features and had some issues. 

Over the weekend I began implementation of the HAA* Pathfinding algorithm. Unfortunately, the path results were sub-optimal given my requirements and that made some paths look unnatural in rare situations. Even smoothing of a calculated path didn't result in the expected path. The algorithm is amazing when it comes to speed. So I will keep the code for future reference, especially since there will be an instance in an upcoming game feature which will require an abstract graph of the map (see paper for more info about that).

Instead I started working on an algorithm somewhat similar to Lifelong Planning A* algorithm. I'm not quite done yet, but the results are already great. I always try to make sure that such algorithms run fast on my crappy hardware under extreme conditions and I was surprised to see it work quite fast on a netbook (1024x600 res, 1.2GHz and 1GB Ram, Windows XP). I had to turn off some features that weren't supported on my netbook, (shaders to name one), but in the end the algorithm performed as expected.

Next, I will implement the new pathfinder into the engine. This will require a lot of cleanup and refactoring, which I am mostly excited about - who doesn't love clean code!

Thursday, April 11, 2013

Dungeon Colony - Interim Development Update

Hi. I have started development on a larger engine upgrade to expand the foundation of the tile map, path finding, unit AI (enemy and friendly) as well as Object management. This engine upgrade affects countless game elements and will take a bit longer to complete. I will periodically update you  to give you an idea if this upgrade is going in the right direction. There are still some unknown obstacles I have to prototype and test before determining if this upgrade will actually be released for alpha testing. I am very excited because the list of new features this upgrade will allow is big and the level of depth to build your dungeon will increase. I won't comment on details until at least some prototypes show success. 

 

During that time, Dungeon Colony can still be played. The latest most stable version is v 0.1.8.70.

image

Friday, April 5, 2013

Update 54 - Dungeon Colony Version 0.1.8.70

Hi. This update (v 0.1.8.70) fixes more bugs. Summary: - Fixes typo. - Restores previously discovered items for crafting after loading saved game. - Fixes a nullpointer exception that was caused when picking up items.

Thursday, April 4, 2013

Update 53 - Dungeon Colony Version 0.1.8.67

Hi. This update (v 0.1.8.67) fixes some more bugs. Mostly caused by the new objects added recently. One of the main issues you may have noticed was with potions. They caused problems loading saved games.

Update Summary:
Updates
- Minions can now place a red gem directly from their bag into a shrine.
Bugs
- Fixes Bug that crashes saved games due to brewed potions. 
- Fixes Bug that crashed saved games due to dead spiders. 

Sunday, March 31, 2013

Update 52 - Dungeon Colony Version 0.1.8.64

This is a small update (v0.1.8.64) that fixes a few bugs thrown by Alpha testers. Thanks for testing!!

Update Summary:
 Fixes bug loading dead spiders.
 Fixes bug when trying to remove walls on map edges.
 Fixes server request bug.  

Best Moments at GDC 2013

I finally was able to [kind of] attended GDC. I wasn't in any of the workshops or the exhibit, but I managed to go to some events that happen around the expo. A GDC ticket is still a hefty price to pay and given that I also work full time during the day I decided not to get a ticket this year and instead invest that money into the game. And I think that was a good idea: The after parties are excellent; there are events/parties on all topics related to games. People tweeted all over the place with invitations or where to rsvp. It's awesome to meet people from all over the world that all share that game development fever. I was also extremely happy to finally meet Andy aka JigxorAndy. He's making an awesome dungeon indie game called Dungeon Dashers which I've been following for a while now. He presented his game in the Indie Area at GDC and my goal is to be presenting there next year too. I met some people who could potentially do freelance sound and audio. But that's still developing.
The highlight of my week at GDC was meeting @Notch. There's a funny snapshot of us, I'm the dude on the left side, no not the one on the far left, but that guy behind my shoulder looks hilarious. I had to sneak up to the VIP area to meet Notch and I still can't believe that he walked away with my contact card in his jacket.
image
Thanks Notch for your generosity!
Lastly, Raven67854 made a Let's Play video of Dungeon Colony. That's a nice bonus since this entire week I haven't been able to work much on game code.

Now that GDC is over and the San Francisco's geek wave is calming down, I am also returning back to my dungeon and preparing to get back into coding.

Sunday, March 24, 2013

Update 51 - Dungeon Colony Version 0.1.8.60

Hi everyone,

I just released a new update (v.0.1.8.60). This version refactors some code and introduces a new object, which I am very excited about: The Alchemy Bar.

The alchemy bar allows you to brew potions that your creatures can use when they are about to crap out. For now, you can make 3 kinds of potions - Health, Mana, and Stamina.
And to make highly magical potions you need to gather some tools and ingredients. First, you need glass flasks to bottle up the potions, second you need water to mix the dry ingredients and then you need mushrooms that provide the power to one of the three benefits. Glass flasks are made in the furnace. You can now add sand to the furnace which will produce the flasks in a 1 to 1 ratio. Once everything is combined it begins making the potions. The following screenshot shows the three potions (health, mana, stamina) and some empty glass flasks:

Select the Alchemy bar on the map to bring up the brewing window (lower left in the following screenshot). There you can see what ingredients you have already supplied and you can select the potions that have been brewed to transfer them some place else.

There is also new logic that goes along with the potions: Select one of your creatures and directly click on the potion icon next to the status bar in order to command the creature to drink a potion...

... if the creature has one in the inventory then it will be consumed immediately. Otherwise, the creature will go to find one in any container where you stored them. You can add them to your creatures inventory and use the lock button to lock them into place for when they may need them. That is, if in battle and health is too low, creatures will drink a health potion if they have one.

It's probably a good idea to store them in chests in areas where you can expect high enemy traffic. However, enemies are very eager to find potions and will steal them from you.

Though, I gotta say, I think i created more bugs than I fixed. So this version could be a bit buggy :-p. Plus there are many many small details that I want to fix/add, you may realize that while playing.

Please leave some feedback... till next time