collaboration rpg

Community Forums/Technical Discourse/collaboration rpg

Matty(Posted May) [#1]
Hi folks.

Ive been meaning to say this for years and years and have started and deleted this post numerous times over the years.

Im wondering if some people would like to collaborate on a game together.

Ive written and completed numerous games over the years as programmer and designer.

But what I'm hoping to do is an rpg or fantasy game. I have ideas for what id like to create but im happy to take a back seat and contribute in other ways.

Im thinking id like to be an assistant 2d artist on a project and to provide programming advice and assistance.

Im not expecting we'd make something ground breaking. This is more for fun than money or accolades.

I have some ideas for a design for mobile. I could build it myself easily enough but i want to take a smaller role in developing something.

On other posts ive made you can see my artwork. Its raw and amateurish but if you can see yourself working with me to develop something simple and fun as a project let me know.

My goal with this is to have a reason to draw and paint some 2d fantasy images whether they be backgrounds or characters-with a rough sketchy feel. And also to offer my programming skills when they are needed and wanted.

I would love to discuss this further here. As i said its purely a fun project.

When i get home i might post an image of a potential design on pen and paper explaining my idea. Although I'm open to yours too as i see my role as going to be more the art side of this.

I'm not claiming to be an excellent artist by a long shot but i enjoy drawing and sketching and would love to see my images in a game as part of a team effort.

I am a programmer by trade but am hoping to take more of a back seat in this.

Purely for fun and enjoyment.


Matty(Posted May) [#2]
Idea for for changes..

Pick from a bunch of character presets for a party of four. Allow alteration of stats.

Main interface is a 6x10 grid where each cell is a location that provides two options with different positive consequences such as stat changes info provided etc.

Combat takes place on some cells which is auto rolled for.

Adventures are played while waiting for the bus or on the train and are quick. Multiple story based adventures ecist with distinct milestones. Eg one may be to find the lost prince another to slay an evil dragon and so on.

Tapping on grid cells reveals surrounding cells and allows for further exploration.

Some cells are impassable and block exploration.

Map generated is random with story picked from a collection.

Game is part procedural part scripted.

Stats are damage output, health and focus or skill rating.

Tapping a grid square shows a set of options which player chooses that develops their character further.

Something like that.

Matty(Posted May) [#3]
Example 2d standard (black and white) there would be a particular style to it..

And in colour

Rooster(Posted May) [#4]
Sure, I'd like to help if I can.

I could do sound effects and music. I'm not that good at it, but I'm not horrible ether (I hope).
I'm not sure how much code work I could do, and all I know well enough is Blitzmax.
I'm not sure how well I know it ether.

I like the style you have going, it would look good in a game.
There is another game called "The Secret of Tremendous Corporation" that has the hand drawn unpolished look.

AdamStrange(Posted May) [#5]
Here's a thought.
I like the concept - more or less. But the design document images are utterly adorable and brilliant. There is a hand drawn charm about the tine blob men that I haven't seen before and it looks appealing <-- that's a good thing....

using the hand drawn blob men would also mean your graphics are simple and could be colourful as needed or black and white <-- again a great thing for clarity.

Suggestion here would be draw up very quickly what the game looks like, I can see 7 blob men already and it looks like 2 mountains and 2 tree squares.
Draw some more blob men and more squares just as you have already done, but more of it all ;)

Matty(Posted May) [#6]
Ok. Well maybe I will make a start myself and see how I go. I was mainly testing the waters with the idea.

We will see.

EdzUp MkII(Posted May) [#7]
looking good :)

Matty(Posted May) [#8]

Starting on tiles...

AdamStrange(Posted May) [#9]
mmm, yes and no. My comment here would be the colours are muddying the graphics a bit, and the line drawing is getting complex - which would be lost on a small screen.

But I like the general use of colours.

So... Here is another view:

First we have a neutral(ish) background color, and some tonal colors making a palette - note there is no black or white, but an 'almost' which gets the job down better as pure black/white would create a jarring effect.

taking your initial drawings, give a base grid and layers to draw on. here you find a very quick line drawing replicant of your drawings - note they are very quick, immediate drawings with light from the top left shadow bottom right.

Note also that some are breaking out of the grid.

Taking these line drawings, we can now add color. the green for the base background, green for the tree, grey for the rocks. notice we are not using fills, just hand draw rough, and quick and simple.

if you removed the color, you would still see the shapes and know instantly what was being shown.

OK. Thoughts so far. cell not visited has no things shown apart from neutral background.
visited cell could be the line drawing
cell that is close (left/right/up/down) could have the color layer added to the line drawing.
You could also use different color palettes to give different looks - green for meadow, core for desert, and still use the same line drawings.

Matty(Posted May) [#10]
Characters (player characters)

Matty(Posted May) [#11]

Why0Why(Posted May) [#12]
I like the idea. Maybe the name could be Watercolor Fantasy.

Mainsworthy(Posted May) [#13]
Matty, just an idea , but if you do everything from a topdown view you will be able to put your art in a virtual tabletop app.its possible to use as they are too. Plus Adam know his stuff lisen to him closly

I have made a VTT App I learned a lot from Adam, that could acomadate, the source code is included,

Rooster(Posted May) [#14]
Maybe the name could be Watercolor Fantasy.

I like it.

Matty(Posted May) [#15]
Time to go to bed.

Derron(Posted May) [#16]
> Watercolor Fantasy.

Then you should consider playing with the words ... so do som "pun". Means to fight a witch you need to color her hat to red first ... or to make a stone go away, you cast the spell "ice color" - which then melts away as the sun is shining strong.

As Adam already told: your characters show too much "details" for the quality they have. Think of the axe/sword-icon in the "icons"-post (3rd row, 1st icon). It is not that easily to recognize because of the less "straight" (unjaggered/non-jittered) lines).

Have a look at Adams suggestions and see how these lines look "smooth" and as if they were drawn in "one stroke". Todays painting apps allow smoothing your draw strokes.
Did you consider painting in a vector drawing app?

Personally I like the "stroke handling" of "Autodesk Sketchbook" (there is a free version to try out). For me and my digitizer (the one of the HP EliteBook) it is producing the best looking pencil strokes. Benefit is of course layers and other cool things.
So do to what Adam did (the coloring) you do the outlines and then in a new layer, with a new "brush" you could paint colors (or maybe "shadow areas" if you really need to).

Nonetheless: the basic ideas in your monsters and icons is good and this is useful if you intend to improve them - which of course could be done step by step and later on (while doing the game development).

@ blob man
I think you are talking about that "circular shapes"-based sketches in post #2 ? Yes I think this could work too - do everying with "circular shapes". Dunno how hard things become to get drawn with this limitation but hey, isn't this part of the creative process we all like?


Matty(Posted May) [#17]
Yes these graphics are a first pass...once I have a working game I will then begin refining them. But I take your point.

Yue(Posted May) [#18]
In blitz3d?

Matty(Posted May) [#19]
There's no code yet Yue....only ideas so far. It is most likely going to be for mobile though and with exes being so hard to distribute these days it is unlikely to be blitz3d.

Yue(Posted May) [#20]
I think if you plan to use BlitzMax, I can collaborate with the menu system and load the resources.

Rooster(Posted May) [#21]
If we use BlitzMax I'll help where I can with code.

Matty(Posted May) [#22]
Hmm...this project is changing in my mind slightly.

Im getting inspired which is a good thing. But because my idea was for mobile im likely to code in java. But i also want to contribute to the maybe i will continue posting media as i upgrade and create it for public use and can offer assistance with code if necessary but at the same time i can build my own app. In an hour or so I'm going to build the map system and play around with exploring the map. It may take a while. What i might do is post in code boxes pseudo code for the process so that anyone else can build it with me in whatever language they choose...blitz monkey javascript java c etc.

Rooster(Posted May) [#23]
What i might do is post in code boxes pseudo code for the process so that anyone else can build it with me in whatever language they choose...

So basically a sort of blueprint for the code?

AdamStrange(Posted May) [#24]
ok. I'm not saying anything apart from this:
Have you ever thought that the reason for lack of users, is because you are using java?

Matty(Posted May) [#25]
No...Android development is primarily done in java.

AdamStrange(Posted May) [#26]
maybe try a desktop (non java) version first and see what the reception is?

Matty(Posted May) [#27]
Yeah...if I did desktop I'd use either blitz3d/plus or javascript (web) - and I'm still debating with myself about the design. I put together a prototype on my phone earlier and it doesn't quite grab me just yet...need to work a few things out still.

EDIT - Actually,, the whole point of this exercise was I was hoping to do the graphics for others rather than build an entire app myself....getting back to my original focus - I wanted to spend some time developing some graphics for others for a project that I was loosely attached to...somehow I've ended up making a whole game again..I think I will go back to the graphics that I have already worked on and redo them soon to bring them up to a better standard (and probably keep refining them)....but we will see...

AdamStrange(Posted May) [#28]
You are sort of making a problem for yourself on the programming front.
java and javascript are not bltz related. So you will Never get any people wanting to work on those formats from here.

So... You have blitz3d, or blitzmax or monkey or monkey2

You will have to decide which, because everyone will need the same platform to work with.

Which means blitz3d and monkey are probably non-starters.

ok, next would be the graphics.
People will take one single look at one single frame and decide if they like it or not. then if they do like what they see - they will investigate further.

So... I'm afraid your graphics are not going to win any converts. Don't get me wrong. there is a lot that is good - but overall they don't look good enough to sell any type of game. they need a certain quality. I can't tell you what that quality is - but I can tell you these graphics don't have it.

People can instantly judge quality from the presentation. Roguelikes/dungeon crawlers are everywhere. so people know what quality looks like. even cheap knock off will buy in graphics to make their crud look like it might be good.
If any game does not meet a certain standard - it's dead in the water.

Now I know you are going to be a.Hurt, b.Angry, c.All of the above, so I am going to show what a quick google gives us:

This looks kinda dull, but is only a step away from what you are thinking

Much more interesting - even in grey

Think about how your graphics would look in both of these - they would become muddy and indistinct

This looks brilliant!!!!!! Whatever quality is, this has it - don't know how it plays though

Nice, but looks like a dullfest...

Busy, kinda nice individual graphics, but one the whole - has selection errors that just make it look poor. colors look like one all messed up palette. very had to see what is going on

Great character design:

place on a muted background and they would POP right out and look brilliant.

Adorable, very likeable

Really interesting use of a chosen palette:

Just more adorable...

This is really interesting - shows a completely different style of presentation and look georgeous. But... It doesn't play that well and quickly becomes boring

This last one is the perfect example of what getting it right looks like:

Yep, there loads of strange text, but playing it is frenetic fun. it is even a good example of taking remade graphics and adding a little something else to them.
Even the UI on the right is an example of what 'Right' looks like

Matty(Posted May) [#29]
Yeah fair enough....I'll stick to doing it on my own then...not hurt, not angry....I can see my quality is not up to par.

Pakz(Posted May) [#30]
I was reading a discussion a while ago and gfx artists said they expect around the sum of 50 euro an hour for their work. High quality art is expensive! So it must be difficult to get good in a short time.
I would expect that it would take a good number of years to get to a pro level. The educated artist i thought spend 6 years in art school. They would of spend years making art on theurself also.

Though with the breakthroughs in machine art and machine learning I expect artificial intelligence to be able to simplify or speed up art creation within the next years. I recently noticed a google tech being able to create emoticons from selfies. Quadrilions of variations iirc.

Another breakthrough last year was by a chinese man who was able to let the computer draw ( blurry) photo images from user input. You would type in gorgon and the ai would create a image showing a gorgon. Maybe this is the direction that art creation is going.

I joined a deep learning group on facebook to follow the news on things like this.

skidracer(Posted May) [#31]
In my book, "quality" is not an attractive quantity in indie productions such as this. I think Matty's style is authentic and highly original.

RemiD(Posted May) [#32]
My opinion : don't consider any critic concerning the subjective aspects of your game (like graphics style or the sounds style), however consider the critics which are about the ease to understand/play the game, bugs, glitches, badly optimized meshes/textures/images/animations/effects/sounds, unconvincing animations, abnormal variation of the speed of the game, abnormal slowdowns, bad sounds normalization (db), etc...

Keep in mind that the appreciation of the graphics/sounds/gameplay of your game is subjective and a matter of taste, so don't expect praises from people who have different views/tastes...

However, about the graphics style, you could try to make it more clean / less drafty (as i explained in another post (=remove the black lines)) (but you do what you want!)

Derron(Posted May) [#33]
There is the most important phrase in Adams post you all seem to ignore:

People will take one single look at one single frame and decide if they like it or not. then if they do like what they see - they will investigate further.

So while _we_ as programmers might see it a bit different, the overall gamer looks at a screenshot and says "nay" or "yay".
They do not say: "ohh, it looks a bit childish, lets read what others think about it and how cool the gameplay is".

Our eyes and ears are what comes first when looking pictures or watching videos. If the game looks "boring" it does not matter how much flexibility the game adds in later stages of a game, how much freedom you have.

These things are only important once you have some people with "powerful words of mouth"-skills (some famous lets players or so).


While prototyping these "wip" graphics are OK but still you should never forget that there are "basic skills" which should be existing in the wip-assets already: things like (nearly) consistent palettes or consistent art style.
As Matty is drawing them "all alone" the art style should be consistent/coherent - at least "icons versus icons".

@ Matty
Did you try a digital painting app (Autodesk Sketchbook was what I proposed). You will surely like how it removes the "jitter" from onces hand drawn lines. Some might not like it - I think it perfectly fits to vector-esque drawings.

@ Dungeon crawlers
Yes, there is plenty of them. So similar to the "water color" you/the "collaborative collection" should consider some distinctive feature, a "USP".
Eg. there could be some kind of levels/floors and on each movement or in certain situations tiles move up and down (z-value) or x/y.
I cannot think of a "reason" why it should behave that way but maybe it is interesting?!
Or something like tile-groups YOU have to add when exploring - so you add eg. 3x3 tiles - with all the bonus/malus they have.
So while the system generates some basic game, YOU create the details.


Matty(Posted May) [#34]
Thanks folks...I've put together a prototype on my mobile phone but I don't like the gameplay that much...I think I'm going to revisit the gameplay...the method I had in place doesn't really inspire all that much...

and oh - I am going to redo the is a wip of where I was going with the drawings before I temporarily gave up for a moment....

Derron(Posted May) [#35]
What about doing this "blob"-style? And then of course do the same for the world/environment. Even spells could be "blob-based".

Blob means having a base for all your art - and it should automatically look more consistent.

While your drawings show creativity (what do they wear, how do they pose ...) they do not look very similar. So some of the units have visible "feet/shoes" and some do not have that detailled feet.
If you draw digitally, you could easily use your "creative sketches" as a basement. Decrease opacity to 25% and on a new layer, draw your corrections ... do that until it suits your needs and the image in your mind - and your brain which knows more about proportions than your "sketch mind" (drawing here and there and adding this and that.... dunno how to describe that better).
Afterwards you add a new layer doing your fine outline.

Of course this goes away from the "sketch look". In your case the "outline"-only units look more interesting than the colored ones. Dunno how to emphasize the units on a similar styled background (only outlines too) but it might be something interesting to look at - maybe some "cut out"-style like in the screenshot Adam linked to:

I mean, as if the units were drawn by someone, hastily cut out to to fight the enemy of is nightmare in a "come to live" boardgame. Hmm this sounds pretty interesting. So let's think about that some phrases longer.

Imagine you get a witched board game ... and a sheet of paper stating: this board is the only way to rescue the world. It is full of magic and things you have drawn will come to live and fight for their live. But dare you to only draw good things, the game will judge your soul. If you do not also create ugly monsters and dangerous traps you and mindkind will die a cruelful death.
You scrap that paper and ignore it until you go sleeping that night. It was a nightmare of a dream and then you "wake up". Glowing lights outside the window and a dark voice talking to you in your head ...only in your head. "DRAW".
You start drawing these ugly monsters and units and suddenly they come alive, your hero is swinging his "insert start weapon".
You begin drawing for your live ... and the lives of every human being....

(sorry for the stupid story... I did not brainstorm before, just thinking-typing-thinking)

Gameplay ideas: As the world lives from your drawings, your "spells" should resample that idea: eg. items could contain "1 time spells" like "paint bridge" which allows to cross a river of melted stones...

To make things "strict" that "voice" could disallow cheating spells ("burn all enemies").

This thing could be called "Paper Dungeon" (or - pun intended - "Draw Commander"). Even "DrawQuest" could sound nice.

Ok, back to gameplay ideas: The board was given by the "voice" so the scenery is defined before - but with certain spells you could replace "tiles". Maybe you only get these 1-time-spells when defeating certain bosses. So "ultra hard" tiles - or not "crossable ones" could get replaced by easier ones.


AdamStrange(Posted May) [#36]
the new monsters have a 'quality' about them. I love the idea of this being line drawing and then you paint them. don't know how it would work, but there is something interesting in there.

Also think that the cutout style could work very well. the colouring concept is pure genius ;)

Their is now a sort of child-like feel to the graphics. You could be in a childs nightmare

Matty(Posted May) [#37]
Okay...not what you were expecting but I'm thinking a kind of arcade combat mode that has at its heart a system that is something like the below (blitz3d/blitzplus code)

Left click on the window to move to that location...units auto fight and auto shoot fireballs.....

Imagine a maze overlaid over this, a single screen to move around on like an arena, powerups and pickups and instead of dots proper character models and so on....this was put together in the twenty minutes I spent downloading windows updates for my PC that hasn't been updated since 2015!

Rooster(Posted May) [#38]
I took a stab at porting the code you posted to BMax, for anyone who wants it. I don't know if it is 100% accurate though.

The idea of the game being a nightmare of some kind sounds cool.

Matty(Posted May) [#39]
Thanks Rooster. I'm thinking I have an idea..I'll write in bplus b3d code and it can be ported to bmax as we go. I'll create the graphics and post 5hem here as I do them and it can kind of be a community project of sorts but will mostly be lead by my work initially.

So this thread will kind of become a worklog that shows the development of a game code and graphics.

Rooster(Posted May) [#40]
but will mostly be lead by my work initially.

I hope we will still be able to contribute code.

Speaking of which, I put together a function for loading all the games images.

The images are sorted so that you could give anything that needs them a "kind" field.
I hope this isn't overly messy, and helps some.

Matty(Posted May) [#41]
When I finish work I'm going to come up with a code skeleton for how I see this game taking shape...

At this stage I won't be using any images or sounds or media - but they will be in the finished product...

But as a thought what I'm going to develop will be something along the lines of the following:

Gameplay action sequence similar to above demo (loosely based on it)
In between each gameplay action sequence is a series of images/text that are like static cinematic displays...
After each actions sequence the player will be able to level up their characters by incrementing some relevant stats on each of them.

I'm thinking code structure will be something along the lines of:
Data Types
          if gamemode = menu
              ;do stuff
          if gamemode = actionscene
              ;do stuff
          if gamemode  = levelup
              ;do stuff
          if gamemode = staticcinematic
               ;do stuff
          ;any extra gamemodes go here (potentially some mini games of various sorts also built in

Matty(Posted May) [#42]
Framework for code in more detail...

hopefully I/we can start filling this in...the basic design brief is in the comments of the code

Happy to answer questions if there is any confusion.....

Matty(Posted May) [#43]
Character - Knight/Fighter

Character - Ranger/hunter

Character - Wizard

Character - Cleric / Healer

I just drew these after work tonight. Used some references from google images for ideas.

Edit - some more before bed...

Monster - Goblin 1

Monster - Goblin 2

Mainsworthy(Posted May) [#44]
@Rooster I like that Loader

@matty, the art is far more impresive

Rooster(Posted May) [#45]
Looking good! The knight look a little on the blurry side, but I really like the wizard.

Thank you! =D

Steve Elliott(Posted May) [#46]
I'm a big fan of the rough sketch and 'water colour' look. The only problem is I don't think they would suit this type of game - characters have to be large or they don't scale-down well.

This is a good example:

Matty(Posted May) [#47]
Quick first pass prototype:

Run in blitz3d or blitzplus - press f5, use mouse to interact....this is just a beginning of sorts.


media: (most will be replaced as I go...this is just an initial demo)











Rooster(Posted May) [#48]
Here is a first pass at porting the code to BMax.
It's slow as crap, and the image draw functions are messed up.
I'm not sure how inportent DrawBlock was, I replaced it DrawImage.
But it does run at a basic level (excuse the pun).

Matty(Posted May) [#49]
Hmm...I wonder why it runs slow on runs at a decent rate on my desktop which is nothing special

EDIT - gah...I know I'm being a pain but after spending some time playing the demo program I put together I'm finding it not very inspiring gameplay....think I need to alter it...yet again...however for the most part the code skeleton does not need to change....

Rooster(Posted May) [#50]
I figured it out now, BMax doesn't like Graphics being given more than three inputs.
I had this problem when I was porting my game.

I will post the fixes when I get the other problems fixed.

Matty(Posted May) [#51]
I'm thinking of potentially changing it to be effectively turn based or at least 'step' based rather than continuous/real time - and to give the user more control over the actions of their instead this will occur:

There will be a maze of sorts...

player will move their character in a set sequence (fighter/ranger/wizard/cleric or similar) and will be able to tap the square in front of them and the character will move there, or tap a monster and the character will attack them (melee for fighter/ranger, wizard shoots fireball, cleric heals friend if tap friend but cannot attack enemy or perhaps has a basic attack).

I'm still toying with the idea...want to make something that is satisfying to play.

Rooster(Posted May) [#52]
I was having fun with the real time less control.

Well I got everything fixed, except the knight and the second goblin are not masked, because I don't know how to do that.

Matty(Posted May) [#53]
Okay....I will continue developing the real time version but I will also develop another version and we can see which is more fun...

My design doc for the non real time version is written here:

That allows for more strategy...I'll develop both simultaneously since they will mostly use the same media and design (cinematic/game play/upgrade loop)

New Sample Code for this alternative idea which I like better:

Okay the plan when I get home from work tonight after I cook tea will be to develop the turn based version further.

I'll neaten up the code, add a few more monster types, get the basics of the gameplay loop working nicely, do some initial balancing and play testing and see how it feels.

I might add some rough loose pixelly effects for spell effects and so on - these may be tricky to do in blitzmax because I don't believe you have the writepixel buffer commands..I might use rects then or ovals to do it....eventually it will be with proper alphaed images though...for now will just use rects and ovals.

I will add a loose particle engine as well...very simple...basically a point emitter.

I'm looking forward to this...

I won't touch the 'upgrade' character stage of the game loop for a few more days I think...

Might redraw the knight and fix the alpha on the goblin and the knight (blitzplus uses black as transparent...blitzmax uses alpha...)

Rooster(Posted May) [#54]
I was thinking; both ideas have advantages, a turn based style would be good for a tough fight.
Whereas using real time would be great for less dangerous of run of the mill fights.
I don't know how hard this would be to do in the code, but maybe it can be made so the player can switch freely between the two.
Sort of a sub-mode for the arcade mode.

And I'm off to bed now.
Good night. :)

Matty(Posted May) [#55]
Thanks Rooster...I'm curious as to what time zone you are in - I'm in Australia - it's 11 hours after GMT (so 6pm) here....

Good night...

here's an update which has the turn based method in a bit more detail now...

Matty(Posted May) [#56]
Two Six more graphics:







code Using new graphics:

Rooster(Posted May) [#57]
Looking good.
I think I'm actually liking your implantation of turn based mechanics.
Probably because it has fast iteration time, unlike some games I can think of.

I'm going to go port the code now, bye.

Rooster(Posted May) [#58]
Code ported.
I think it all working right.
I did have to change how the stun effects were draw, because BMax doesn't do hollow ovals.

Matty(Posted May) [#59]
Thanks Rooster. You're doing great.
I think we are now ready to work on the upgrade segment. I'm busy today so I probably won't get much done.

After that it is content. Ie more monsters, cut scenes, story, background images etc.

Matty(Posted May) [#60]
I'm thinking in terms of monster content we need to come up with themes. As you can see there are two themes already..goblins and spiders.

I'm thinking each theme needs about five or six different monster types which fit into categories such as:
Basic grunt
Bigger badder grunt (tougher or more deadly)
Spell casters (lots of variety and can go wild with effects)

I have a few ideas already including:
Undead with powerful spell casters.
Beastmen/goatmen with powerful grunts (or maybe lizard people snake people?)
A powerful magic using race (eye beasts?)

Matty(Posted May) [#61]
Update (did before I got up for work...)








Rooster(Posted May) [#62]
Okay I guess I will start working on functions and methods that will help with adding new content.

As far as themes go, reptile people and beast men sound good.
Eye beasts? You mean kind of like in that first drawing you posted? Because that would be cool.

How do these sound?
Dragons: Maybe really high level monsters?
Centaurs, satyrs and fauns
Shape shifter?: Probably too over complimented.
Tree spirits
Unicorns: I seem to recall them being depicted as highly aggressive animals in fairy tales

Hope these help.

Matty(Posted May) [#63]
hi Rooster

I think for the moment the code doesn't need a lot of changes...but perhaps what could be done is some work on creating new 'effects' ie spell and particle effects...have a look at the create'xxx'particle effect codes and make some new ones that look good.

I'm going to do some drawings over the next few days.

Rooster(Posted May) [#64]
I guess I should have clearer.
I meant something to automatically do stuff like load images, with little to no new code.

I'm interested to see what you turn out.

Rooster(Posted May) [#65]
Okay, I've ported the last iteration of the code for those who want it.

Matty(Posted May) [#66]
Thanks Rooster...

I think one of my other tasks will be to tidy up the code - revisit the comments, remove the extraneous data types and so on.

I'm not going to get a chance to do any work on this tonight after work I believe but should be back at it tomorrow evening.

I'm enjoying this.

I'm toying with the idea of the cinematics being coloured sketches - hand drawn mainly because I'm not going to spend the money on paying an artist to put together highly detailed full screen images - too expensive - I know the quality will possibly suffer a bit but it's all I can actually do myself....I've learned my lesson when it comes to spending 1000s on artwork for game will never be recouped....but it should still be fun...

Level progression as I see it (game level):

Beastmen/Barbaric Monsters
Aberrations/Eye Monsters etc

Each themed area will have 3-4 levels within it that showcases the different monster types and combat feel....

Total is therefore about 15-20 levels....

That means 15-20 to keep the content requirements low there will be significant re-use of assets / art work...I don't want to draw 20 different images unless they're small and upscaled....but maybe.

Rooster(Posted May) [#67]
Okay, I've finished the image loading function.
For it to load files with the proper category, the images need a name formated like this...

Hope this helps.

Glad to see you are enjoying yourself.

I keep seeing 20 levels, and thinking it isn't that much;
but I know how little things turn it to bigger ones. XD

Matty(Posted May) [#68]
The other thing to remember - especially if this goes to mobile is that I know for myself I don't play mobile games all that long, one or two short sessions and then uninstalled if it's no good and maybe kept for a few days if it is - so having lots of levels is potentially wasted if no one ever gets to the higher levels. (My metrics in most of my other games show most players, the vast majority, play for a few minutes of any game at most)

Rooster(Posted May) [#69]
Huh, I never though about it that way.

Matty(Posted May) [#70]
It's also good in my opinion to have a few well designed quality levels than oodles of filler.

Rooster(Posted May) [#71]
Me too.
I just have a habit of biting off more than I can chew. lol

Rooster(Posted May) [#72]
I messed around with particle effect system like you suggested, and I got a few that looked ok.

Matty(Posted May) [#73]
For testing the particles..

Matty(Posted May) [#74]
I'm still thinking of the cut-scene / story telling side of the game and wondering whether I'll do it with some kind of in game sprites or whether it will be a static backdrop or what....I'm leaning towards a set of character sprites - talking heads type of things...perhaps...not sure...still just an idea in my head.

Matty(Posted May) [#75]
More sprites:




Rooster(Posted May) [#76]
Ahh, thanks for the testbed.

I'm not sure what you're envisioning with using sprites, but that could really lend itself to being flexible.
Also on the topic of story, what are doing for that?
Are we going to do a linear quest type of story. Or maybe use random generator to "write" a new story for each play through?

The beast men are looking good. I'm guessing that undead are next?
I'm curious, what is your process for creating these sprites?

Matty(Posted May) [#77]
Thanks. I just had a realisation idea at 4am about the story. Rather than cinematics I can have a world map with 15 to 20 dungeons scattered across it and the player can simply pick the order to play them in. Defeating 15 of them unlocks the final boss dungeon which must be defeated to win.

Re sprite creation:i do a google search of imagesfor inspiration then draw with wacom tablet on, scale down and alter colors.

RemiD(Posted May) [#78]
The characters postures looks quite convincing, well done.

Rooster(Posted May) [#79]
I got a load stats function running, the only other thing you would need to add to the code is making pc:creature a global.
It shouldn't need to have the group of stats any order.



Sounds good, I think that would be a more flexible solution to story telling.

Matty(Posted May) [#80]

02003map.jpg (this will change - just for demo purposes right now)

data file

Going to change the map method but you get a bit of an idea....

Matty(Posted May) [#81]
Thanks RemiD....

Rooster - I haven't implemented your changes in blitzplus/blitz3d yet (the image and stat loading techniques...) I will likely implement them further down the track...

Tonight when I get home from work I'm going to implement the beastmen stages and draw the undead and potentially the eye monsters/weird monsters as well....

I've added a few more 'modes' to the players/monsters including 'cursed' and 'berserk' with particle effects for each.

It's coming along nicely....

I've added a regeneration and poison attribute to trolls and giant spiders respectively.

Rooster(Posted May) [#82]
And ported.

Looking good, between the stun and poison its starting to get harder.
What are the plans for audio?

Will the player eventually be able to chose the level at the world map, or do you plan on keeping it the way it is?

Matty(Posted May) [#83]
Audio - haven't decided.....still thinking of this....potentially a lot of sound effects could be required...unless make it music only? not sure hard to get right - the wrong choices can be quite annoying to listen to over and over. But this project is growing and I will likely use .ogg files for sound effects and put a huge number of small sound effects in.

Map - haven't decided...I'm thinking that I will stick with a linear story line and so I will still use a cutscene style feature with the map rather than a 'select a location' - I think it is in some ways like a puzzle game where the puzzles are the combat and are played one after the other...but I may go the other way and allow free choice...not sure yet.....

Matty(Posted May) [#84]
Also - I'm still not sure how I'm going to do the backgrounds for the levels...they will be static with maybe a light animation of a flickering flame or something like that perhaps...

With my art skills not being all that great I'm not sure how I'm going to do it...

I *could* hand draw them on paper / tablet but I think they will really let the game down if I do it....

Also - I'm thinking the opening cut scene will be of a king or emperor or someone giving the party of adventurers their quest to rid the land of monsters, and after that will involve the party traveling across the map to do so - hence the map cinematic which is extremely simple....

Matty(Posted May) [#85]
Edit - additional:

change of mind:

Cinematic cut scene / level intro will not be a map.

Story will be linear as planned.

I will use a comic book /graphic novel style format as that allows me to hand paint the cells and have smaller than full screen cells (my art skills can do small images, much much harder to do full screen images)....

So tonight I will story board with pen and paper the first level's scene....

Also cut scenes/cinematics won't appear every level, just every change in about 4 or 5 of them.....

So furthermore tonight's tasks will be the following;

1. test beast code works fine with new particle effects (done)

2. draw undead (done)

3. draw eye monsters (cthulhu style beasts too) (done)

4. story board first comic book style page and potentially draw it...
(do on paper first then on wacom tablet...doing now)

I might not get it all done tonight but it is a start...

Matty(Posted May) [#86]
Graphics (new)








Rooster(Posted May) [#87]
Hey, you did the undead without using any zombies. Nice to see that for a change.

Matty(Posted May) [#88]
Okay......a bit more done...I've put the code and images into a zip file for now.

I've renamed the image files to fit your convention.

I've done some drawings for the comic style story appearance - they are consistent in style but are definitely drawn a certain way.....hopefully consistency wins out over pixel perfect quality here!

zip file

I've gone with just 4 themes now...goblins, spiders, beasts and undead...might add more later but for now it is what I've got.

Here are the comic style panels:

Rooster(Posted May) [#89]
Looks good.
The king seems like he would be a fun person.

Matty(Posted May) [#90]


Fixed some bugs.
Fixed some balance issues.
Added 'drawnumbers' function to draw numbers (images 10000-10009 category)

So far I can't get up to the undead stage - I die at the beasts's getting tough.

New link:

Added some more comic style images

Link Update

Edit - and I can now finish the game...just completed it on a single health point remaining on the final that was close!!!

Rooster(Posted May) [#91]
I wish I had know about the option under file called Import bb project, I could have saved myself so much trouble...

I don't know how to replace the masking code, so any body who uses this port will need to open 00101goblin2.png,
and set the background alpha to zero them selves.

Yeah, the game would be a nightmare if it wasn't so fast.

Matty(Posted May) [#92]
Thanks Rooster...I will fix the goblin image at some point....not sure why it is black...can do it in

The most recent code is here:


I'm thinking now it is probably at the stage where we can think about adding audio.

Matty(Posted May) [#93]
Audio Added:

Link with Audio

Some bug fixes.
New types added
"audio" and "audiofx"

I bought the music for this in 2011...long time ago...same with the sound effects- when I built another dungeon game I used these effects.

Side note:
I have some great music from a game I wrote in 2008 but I can't access it. I encrypted it and lost the source to my encryption/decryption routines so it is effectively gone for least from my computer.

Matty(Posted May) [#94]
I'm planning on porting this to Android soon. I want to play it on my mobile because I rarely use my pc for games. So I might develop in both blitz and java simultaneously soon.

Rooster(Posted May) [#95]
It's looking great!

(BlitzMax code)

Matty(Posted May) [#96]
Thanks Rooster. I'm going to stick with a blitz version for now. I toyed with an android version and it loses somethimg on the small screen with a touch interface.

Matty(Posted May) [#97]
Note. I'm now not sure what I will do next for this. It could do with some polish. It will remain desktop only because I can't see it really working on mobile. When I get to my PC I might play it some more to get a feel for it.


Matty(Posted May) [#98]
Blitzplus/Blitz3d code -

change from previous:
Uses Rooster's image loading routine and also uses a similar routine for loading audio.

Graphics and Audio files in zip file included earlier but here again:


image from game level 2:

Rooster(Posted May) [#99]
I've noticed a small exploit, after the level is cleared and before it switches to the level up screen, you can rapidly click one of the character to increase the purple bar to full for the rest of the party.

As for polish, maybe use a different sound effect for the lightning spell, one with more "bite" to it.

Music works really well I think.

Latest BMax port:

gpete(Posted May) [#100]
nice work! Matty I like your bitmap characters, but if the characters are not drawn facing in 8 directions then why have a isometric style floor tile? (ie Diablo 2)..

Matty(Posted May) [#101]
Hi gpete...had i been able to draw a larger detailed image for the dungeon levels i would have and still it was i simply used a tile i had available. ...

Matty(Posted May) [#102]
So -1. I think the upgrade screen could do with some work.

2. The dungeon level could be drawn better.

3. The lightning sound could be shifted.

4. ???

What are we going to do with this? Rooster you have blitzmax so I suppose you could release a Mac version.

5. It needs a credits page for the two of us. I'll do that next.

Rooster(Posted May) [#103]
Can you cross compile Mac from Linux? I do have a windows laptop I can use if I need to.

xlsior(Posted May) [#104]
Can you cross compile Mac from Linux? I do have a windows laptop I can use if I need to.

You can only compile for Mac from Mac, due to the apple-proprietary compile tools.

Matty(Posted May) [#105]
Update with credits:


New snippet in 'main' that handles the credits on exit

Rooster(Posted May) [#106]
Aww man! :(

At least I can compile a Linux version for you Matty.
I have have to say it scared me a little seeing my actual name in the credits, I had forgotten it was on my profile.

Latest BMax port:

Matty(Posted May) [#107]
Oohh...tell me if you want it removed...don't want to publish anything you're not comfortable with having...

Rooster(Posted May) [#108]
No it's fine, I just wasn't expecting it.

Rooster(Posted May) [#109]
A little off topic, but thanks for telling about your method for creating sprites.
I just got around to seriously testing it, and it worked out great. Thanks. :)

Rooster(Posted May) [#110]
Okay it's been a bit, what is the status?

RemiD(Posted May) [#111]
I want to thank both of you to share the code in bb and bmx, i don't like the gameplay of the game even if the characters drawings are nice, but i find interesting to see how others write code and to see how far you can convert a bb code in bmx (because some functions/possibilities are not available in bmx but in bb and vice versa)
anyway, good luck for the next steps...

Matty(Posted May) [#112]
Hi Rooster...status. ..busy at work yesterday...weekend is havent touched it. Will probably not have time until Thursday this week but we will see. I might play it a bit to get a feel for any changes.

Thanks RemiD.

Rooster(Posted May) [#113]
I should have thought of that, sorry for bothering you.

Glad you found this useful/interesting.

Matty(Posted May) [#114]
No big deal...I'm on these forums most days so it is no bother...

Mainsworthy(Posted May) [#115]
Matty, Ive been toying around with an RPG app I had not finished, and I was wondering if I could put your art into it, so it would be a second collab work, I don't know if I will ever get it finished, but your art would improve things?

Matty(Posted May) [#116]
Yes - love you to use my art. That's what it is there for.

Have a look here for the full content so far (and I am planning on adding to it and will take suggestions happily)

Art Assets

Mainsworthy(Posted May) [#117]
thanks Matty, they look good.

stayne(Posted May) [#118]
This project screams for MIDI music.

Matty(Posted May) [#119]
Another graphic (although probably not for this game..used it in my other one)

Rooster(Posted June) [#120]
Matty, now that the site is closing, should I make a new thread for this at one of the new forums?

(The ones I know of so far.)

Matty(Posted June) [#121]
You can if you want - I haven't decided what I'm going to do come closing time re other forums.

I'm not likely to spend a lot of time on this project going forward...I've done as much as I'm going to do for the moment.

Rooster(Posted June) [#122]
I was under the impression that you were going to post one more final version.
So I guess the last one is the final version then?

If so, then I think I will post it at the aforementioned forums.

Matty(Posted June) [#123]
No...I've finished with this project...I'm happy for you to take it wherever you want though...and you can choose to use more of the graphics found here:

if you wish to extend it.

Rooster(Posted June) [#124]
Okay, I will be putting them on the the forums.

I may add more to it there someday.