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Tuesday, May 12, 2015

Dungeon Colony

Hello Minions!

Version is out and Dungeon Colony is getting mighty close to Beta status. This version completes the first Economy Update.

The new economy system is tied into the new room features introduced in version 0.2.7.x. At the moment, there are 3 base rooms available: The lair, the cantina and the treasury. Minions sleep in their lair and store goods such as gold coins and other items. For each command you issue to a minion, he will want to get paid for it. After a certain amount of work performed, the minion will go to the treasury to get his wage. He will then bring his wage to his room and store it in a chest. If a minion doesn't have a room or a chest, he will complain to his master about it.

Minions use their earned wage to buy food. You must have a Cantina available and place a dining table inside it. That way, your minions know where to go to buy and eat food to replenish their health and fill up their belly. Coins spend on food are transferred back into the treasury.

This creates the foundation for the dungeon economy and a circular transaction system that provides a way for your minions to work for their needs. Future releases will introduce new rooms and new desires for your minions to spend their wage on, such as potions that they can use when under attack, weapons to improve fighting enemies, or other items to improve their skills.

With Economy 1.0 completed, I'm turning my focus back to the Campaign game mode to work on Level design and polish the engine for Beta release.

Thursday, April 16, 2015

Dungeon Colony


This release completes the first set of features for Rooms in Dungeon Colony.

Watch the following video log to learn more about it:

What's next:

Before I complete the campaign mode the behavior engine and the rules that make up the Dungeon Economy must be updated and improved. The most recent features about abilities and dungeon rooms play an important role in these improvements. Rooms determine where minions go look for resources: the lair for a place to rest, eat and store personal goods; the pantry is the hot-spot for food and the treasury is the money-department. Without these rooms, the economy can't function. Workers will want to be compensated for all work commands you give them. This is the first improvement I will focus on.

Once these improvements are complete Beta stage will be reached and I will start with the level development for the campaign mode. At the same time I will introduce the story that goes with the campaign mode. I'm hoping to reach this milestone in a few months, but that really depends a lot on many other factors... so wish me the best!

Sunday, April 5, 2015

Dungeon Colony (+) an Ester Egg!!

Grunt Minions!

I've just uploaded a new version. This one includes all the work I've done on Dungeon Rooms so far! But first, there's an easter egg too. I've added a new creature that is joining the spider family. This one is the Spider Queen!

The Spider Queen is 4 times the size of it's fighter class. And it is much much stronger and faster. So far you can add the spider from the Level Editor. Later, there will be levels with the spider in it:

Check out this gif animation of the same level:

Rooms Part 3:

I've continued to work mostly on Rooms. (Check out the last two posts (One & Two) if you want to read more about the beginnings of rooms.) There are now 3 types of rooms, I will add more types later, but the 3 types that I start with are the most important rooms to keep the economy of your colony going. Every other room type thereafter is an add-on. Those 3 rooms are the Lair, Pantry and Treasury: 

The Lair is the room where your a minions will live. Minions will sleep in their room and use it to store their goods. The pantry is where minions get fed and the treasury is where they get their wage. 
In today's release I've added the logic to place objects inside a room. What that really means is that any objects that are located in a room tile, will be considered inside that room. Having the ability to track what objects are in a room allows me to set room requirements to guide the player into crafting certain furniture items to be placed in the room. For example, the lair will need a bed for the minion to sleep on and a chest to store gold. 

And here is the summary of changes in version

- Adds Spider Queen to the Level Editor.
- Begins with Dungeon Rooms. Work in Progress:
- Creates 3 new rooms: Lair, Pantry, and Treasury.
- Can create, delete, merge and split rooms.
- Renders rooms on map if the Room Tool Button is selected.
- When hovering the mouse over the map, then the color of the room shows (faintly).
- When-ever a minion walks over a Lair room without owner, and if he is owner-less too, then he becomes the new owner automatically.
- Adds logic to remove room owners when a room is deleted or when the owner dies.
- Saving and Loading Rooms is possible.
- Shows room info when hovering.
- Shows room colors on brush when painting rooms.
- Adds inRoom Room property to all objects.
- Adds ability to add objects to rooms.
- Adds ability to assign a room a specific object requirement.
- Sets requirements for the Lair room.
- Removes invoice game activation option since it never worked in first place.

Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Dungeon Colony Rooms - Ownership

I've introduced some of the new room features in a previous blog post. Since then I've continued on rooms and built the logic to let minions take ownership of the room Lair type. All a minion needs to walk on a tile that is defined as the room type Lair and if that room is still vacant, the minion will automatically become owner of it. I will add a way to remove owners as well. Other room types, such the Pantry or Treasury do not need owners. They have different functions such as managing food and gold reserves for the entire Dungeon.

You can see in the following Gif animation some of the new features in action:

  1. I'm first setting up two Lair rooms by selecting the lair room button on the right and then drawing the room in. (Lair rooms have the color blue)
  2. Then I'm sending a minion in the left room; as soon as he enters the room tile, he becomes owner.
  3. The other new feature is the room info. You can see that I de-selected the room tool button and the blue color showing the room area disappears. However, you can still see the room designation in a lighter blue when hovering the mouse over the room. After a few milliseconds, a popup also gives information about the room. In this case whether the room has an owner or not. 

What's not shown in the gif above is some additional info when hovering over a room. If the lair has an owner, the owner will be highlighted, so that you can find out quickly where the owner is.

... Next: I'll start building the logic that determines what a minion can do in a room. 

Sunday, March 29, 2015

Dungeon Colony Rooms - A first look


I've started designing Rooms for Dungeon Colony! This is where things get interesting. The main purpose of rooms is determined by their type. For now, I'm introducing and testing three room types: Lair, Pantry, and Treasury. These rooms all play a fundamental role in the up-coming economy update. The Lair will be the room that your creatures sleep in. Your minions can claim a room and become the owner of it. I'm planning to assign ownership by walking into a room. Currently, only the Lair can be owned by your creatures. The other rooms are common or belong to your Dungeon Master by default (the treasury of course).

As a minion takes ownership of a room, it becomes his hub for anything that he needs. That includes sleep, food, potions, weapons and gold of course. To store all of that, your minion will ask you for furniture... That part I am going to work on soon. Right now I'm finishing up the UX features. That is the way that you can create room of different room types. As well as how the UX responds to you when you try to place a room or remove a room again. For example, I've built in features that allows you to merge existing rooms of the same type, or splits rooms into two (or more), while reassigning ownership of any previous room owners. Anyway ... if that makes no sense, I think a small demo is nicer to show some of it in action:

Placing rooms is just like drawing in a paint program: You choose the room type, which will draw the color of the room to show you where the room dimensions are. If you turn the Room-Button off, the room colors will be hidden. For development purposes I show the room ID, so that I can merge or split rooms correctly (see red pantry room in demo). I will reveal more about rooms as features become available.

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Dungeon Colony


I'm making good progress on the final major game engine features: Creature behavior and creature economy. In this version update (v0.2.6.0) I'm extending how abilities are used to control your minion behavior.

There are 9 new abilities which range from mining ore, lumbering wood to transporting and building objects. Now, the player can control what orders a worker will perform and which one he will ignore. The following gif animation shows how you can simply turn on and off certain abilities.

You ask what is the benefit for that and why should I care??? A lot of feedback I've received asked me to allow the player control over what minions do. The engine used to assign orders to your workers on a first come first serve basis. So if you had 10 activities pending to lumber wood, whenever a minion would become free to perform this job, he would take on the job and carry it out.

With the new system, you can designate which minions lumber wood, which mine, dig dirt, collect water, etc. This way, you could limit how many of your workers lumber wood, while others stay back to mine fore ore. By default a minion will carry out all of these abilities, but you can choose to turn them off when you want. In future game updates, workers will be able to learn new abilities. But that's not part of this release yet. :)

Friday, March 20, 2015

Dungeon Colony Version


It's great to finally write a blog post, I've been waiting for this day for a long time and, for Great reasons, I took time and put the Dungeon Colony machine on hold for a while to welcome new life into this world. Now that I returned I continued development and I want to tell you that there is a new release available today. It adds new features both to the engine as well as the game server:

The Campaign Engine:

The pieces are starting to come together and connect into a full Campaign Engine. It loads levels, integrates into the game editor, connects levels to the campaign map, manages units travelling from one destination to the next and puts your units onto the playing map, when the player selects a game. This means that your units travel with you, including their experience and items they may be holding. Currently I'm working on connecting loose ends to complete the playing experience of a full game from start to finish.


At the same time, I've continued on level design. One of the larger level design elements is about runes. Your Dungeon Master get's it's magic spells from ancient runes which his ancestors have left scattered around the land. He has one of the pieces in his possession, passed down to him from generations, but he must find and collect the rest to unleash its full power. The first rune gives him the spell to summon a minion into the world. The minion's soul is bound to you and the weak power of the rune doesn't allow you to summon more than just that one minion. There are, however, other ways to get more minions in the game.

The Dungeon Master has a special button that opens up the Rune Collection window (screenshot below). Any runes that the Dungeon Master collects will be shown in this window. The following screenshot shows the windows at different stages of assembly. Each time the Dungeon Master finds a new piece the player may try to put them together to craft the next assembly:

Game Server:

The game engine communicates with a server where players can store their game. During alpha development this was (and still is) the only way to save games. Its serves the purpose of debugging and understanding issues players may have. I'm currently looking for a cloud solution for game saves and may use AWS for this, let me know if you recommend another solution and why. One of the biggest upgrades I've made to the server is improving email communication. It was a disaster before and I lost too many emails in the process. This should not happen any longer.

New in version 0.2.5:

- Dungeon Master can now carry certain special items.
- Added new Rune Stone Fragments. Fragments can be combined into one full assembly.
- Further improves campaign map logic for units traveling between locations.
- Enables campaign save/load to server.
- Adds button in settings to allow you to delete & restart a campaign game.
- Adds Gold Reserves to Campaign Game Map.
- Adds Legend to Campaign Map.
- Adds next/previous buttons to scroll through this list.

Sunday, January 4, 2015

Dungeon Colony has been greenlit!

Hello Dungeon Masters!

Dungeon Colony has been Greenlit!

I have some great news: Dungeon Colony has been Greenlit! What a good way to start the new #indiedev year. This milestone is fantastic and highlights just what an amazing journey it has been to create the game of my dreams so far. Progress has been good and steady and I'm working towards a beta launch hopefully sometime this year.

Dungeon Colony isn't available in the store just yet. Before it gets there, I need to make some changes to the game and implement some Steam code. There are also a few business related obstacles that I need to complete. So stay tuned for more updates on that.

In case you are curious, I started my Greenlight page in March and I was greenlit mid December 2014. I surely didn't do much marketing (except for game updates) and am happy that the community decided on its own to vote the project into the store.

Dungeon Colony version out now.

I have made great progress on the campaign map which includes a lot of functionality that allows players to navigate the map and move maps from one level to the next.

The following gif shows the first 2 map icons and the road on which your units travel:

As you complete levels, more roads and destinations will be added to the map. You will carry over your units from level to level, keeping any experience they have earned. This feature is still in development.

Here is the complete list of changes in v0.2.4.0:

  • Adds notification icon when new comments are available to the player.
  • Splits Campaign Map into 4 smaller maps to fix bug with older GPUs.
  • Reads path locations and destinations from maps.
  • Adds Map Icon for Player Units.
  • Adds Ability to move player units from one location to another.
  • Adds Spawn Points for various unit types.
  • Allows setting count, direction and type of unit to spawn on map.
  • Allows placing spawn points from editor using a new Spawn Points Window.
  • Adds logic to transfer map units to level.
  • Adds Campaign Development Progress Window.