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Thread: Hidden Asset (isometric assassination/stealth game)

  1. #61
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    Re: Hostile Takeover (isometric assassination/stealth game)

    Release: v0.2 (and Development Video #22)

    Here's the latest version and a video demonstrating what's new gameplay-wise:

    Hostile Takeover Demo v0.2 for Windows (22 MB)
    Hostile Takeover Demo v0.2 for Linux 32-bit (21.5 MB)
    Hostile Takeover Demo v0.2 for Linux 64-bit (21.5 MB)


    Changes:
    - Fixed bug when changing movement type while shooting/aiming.
    - Fixed bug that would make the player character disappear if movement set to sneak as the very first thing after game load/start.
    - Fixed minor issue with double-clicking to run.
    - Added melee combat.
    - Added two additonal test maps (and a variation of the Hensley International map for when the assassination job has been completed).
    - Added overworld map that's accessed when walking to the edge of a map.
    - Added 'Restart this location' functionality.
    - Redid the entire save game system to save information about multiple maps.
    - The game now asks for confirmation before overwriting an existing savegame.
    Laserbrain Studios - Currently developing Hidden Asset!
    Ascii Sector - Real-time roguelike in space!

  2. #62
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    Re: Hostile Takeover (isometric assassination/stealth game)

    Posted it up on GamingOnLinux.com as per usual for you

    Loving it keep it up!

  3. #63
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    Re: Hostile Takeover (isometric assassination/stealth game)

    Thanks!
    Laserbrain Studios - Currently developing Hidden Asset!
    Ascii Sector - Real-time roguelike in space!

  4. #64
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    Re: Hostile Takeover (isometric assassination/stealth game)

    re-opened

  5. #65
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    Re: Hostile Takeover (isometric assassination/stealth game)

    It's been a while...
    June 2nd, 2014

    For the last year and change, I've been pretty quiet. This isn't because I've stopped developing Hostile Takeover, though. To the contrary, the game has come a long way in the past year. I just felt that I needed to go into stealth mode for a while until the game was up to snuff again and ready to be shown to the world.

    At first, I just wanted to fix a few things here and there, but then I kept finding new things that I wanted to fix or improve before I showed the game again, and all of the sudden, more than a year has passed. But now the game is nearing a point where I feel confident in sharing it with the world again, so without further ado, here are some screenshots:








    As you can (hopefully) tell, a lot has changed since the last updates. I'll go over some of the changes and improvements in future blog posts.

    I've removed the download links to the old version, since it was terribly out of date and this new version isn't yet at a state where it's fit for release. Speaking of, I'll most likely be doing closed testing for this and coming versions until the demo is done (which I'll then probably release as part of a Kickstarter campaign). The demo will include three missions, with the first two being tutorials. The above screenshots are of the work-in-progress first tutorial mission.

    Finally, I've set up a mailing list that you can subscribe to if you want to be sure to know about any game/demo releases or future Kickstarter campaigns.

    And that's all for now. Hostile Takeover is back! (Though it was technically never gone...)
    Laserbrain Studios - Currently developing Hidden Asset!
    Ascii Sector - Real-time roguelike in space!

  6. #66
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    Re: Hostile Takeover (isometric assassination/stealth game)

    I liked the early releases of Hostile Takeover a lot. I hope to see more demos in the coming months.

  7. #67
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    Re: Hostile Takeover (isometric assassination/stealth game)

    Fantastic to see you back in action!

  8. #68
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    Re: Hostile Takeover (isometric assassination/stealth game)

    Thanks! Also:

    Improved lighting technique
    June 9th, 2014

    There have been a bunch of improvements to Hostile Takeover's visuals in the past year. I've upped the graphics from 24-bit to 32-bit, since it seemed more and more silly to sacrifice visuals for better performance on low-end computers. And I also abandoned the older, more retro UI in favor of a somewhat more modern and less obtrusive design.

    But one of the changes that took the longest to implement was the new and improved lighting system. Not because it's all that complex, but because it took some tinkering and experimentation to figure out how to do it right. So that's what I want to talk about in this blog post.

    In the below image, you can see the 3 levels of lighting quality that you can set in the game's options menu. These 3 levels represent the lighting system as it has progressed since I first started working on the game. Instead of just using the highest quality in the game and scrapping the older versions of the system, I decided to allow players to set the lighting quality in the game, since on older computers, lowering the quality can improve frame rate slightly.


    The quality 1 lighting just considers the lighting level of a single tile. The floor sprites have the level of lighting of the tile they're on, and the wall sprites the tile they're facing.

    With quality 2 (which is what was available in the old releases of the game), the lighting is smoothed between adjacent floor and wall sprites. To achieve this smoothed effect, I use vertex coloring. In OpenGL, vertices are basically the corners of the texture you're drawing to screen. So when drawing a floor or wall sprite to screen, they're drawn as rectangles ('quads' in OpenGL) and therefor each have 4 vertices:


    When drawing one of these sprites to screen, I can tell OpenGL how light or dark each corner of the sprite should be, and OpenGL then smoothes out the light level across the entire sprite and between the corners. To make adjacent floor and wall sprites blend more into each other, I set the light levels of the corners to be an average of the sprites that share that corner.

    This works fairly well and certainly gives smoother lighting than for lighting quality 1. It's not perfect, however, and as you can see in the comparison image, there are still some hard edges between the individual floor and wall sprites. The reason for this is that the corners of the actual floor and wall images don't line up with the corners of the sprite. The floor is diamond shaped, while the texture is a rectangle. And because of the isometric perspective, the corners of the actual walls don't line up with the corners of the sprites either. To fix this, I split the sprites into sub-sprites when drawing them to screen:


    This gives me sprite corners that line up with (some) of the floor and wall corners. And since the floor and wall corners now line up with the sprite's corners, the vertex coloring makes the smooth lighting match up better between adjacent floors and walls. As a result, the transition between adjacent floors and walls is practically seamless. Here's how the corners of a wall's sub-sprites matches up perfectly with the corners of an adjacent wall's sub-sprites:


    I'm really pleased with this system -- not least because I'm now getting almost perfectly smooth lighting without any use of shaders or other more demanding methods.
    Laserbrain Studios - Currently developing Hidden Asset!
    Ascii Sector - Real-time roguelike in space!

  9. #69
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    Re: Hostile Takeover (isometric assassination/stealth game)

    Made the first unique-looking NPC. This bouncer is the first character you'll interact with in Hostile Takeover.

    Laserbrain Studios - Currently developing Hidden Asset!
    Ascii Sector - Real-time roguelike in space!

  10. #70
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    Re: Hostile Takeover (isometric assassination/stealth game)

    New melee combat and weapons
    June 16th, 2014

    One of the big issues with the previous releases was melee combat. It just wasn't very intuitive. The way it worked was that you could hold down the right mouse button to block at any time, but if you held it down for too long, you'd start building up 'melee fatigue' and wouldn't be able to neither block nor attack until the fatigue had expired.

    This system was meant to keep the player from holding down the right mouse button to block continuously, but it just wasn't very intuitive. Why, for example, would you build up melee fatigue just by holding up your arms to block a potential attack? It didn't make much sense. So I've completely scrapped the idea of melee fatigue, and instead implemented a more classic system where you can only block when an actual attack is incoming. So now it's much more a matter of being able to react quickly when your opponent makes a move. I also added Arkham Asylum-styled indicators above an opponent's head to indicate when an attacking is imminent and you can block.

    It also wasn't clear when you could attack an opponent without risking your attack being blocked and you being stunned for a while. The way it worked was that your opponent would be stunned for a while after you'd blocked his attack, and you could freely attack him while he's stunned without fearing him blocking your attack. It still works like this, but now I've added animation frames to show when a character is stunned and open to an attack.

    Here's a low-quality gif animation to show the new system:


    And now I just noticed that the attack indicators should probably be red when you're stunned... Adding that to my to-do list.

    Melee combat is pretty simple and that's on purpose, since combat really isn't the main focus of the game. It'll be a lot more about puzzling out situations and using your equipment to avoid combat. But there still needs to be a combat system for when your stealthing fails and there's no other way out.

    One way I'll be adding a bit of depth to the melee combat system is through weapons. Different weapons can work differently and have different effects. For example, in the above gif, I'm using a knife. This weapon's special characteristic is that it still does damage (to the opponent's arms instead of head) when the attack is blocked. There's also a baton that when used and blocked makes the blocked character stunned for a shorter amount of time. Other weapons can for example deal splash damage to adjacent opponents, or maybe you have to click the right mouse button fast to build up to a single deadly blow? There's a bunch of possibilities.
    Laserbrain Studios - Currently developing Hidden Asset!
    Ascii Sector - Real-time roguelike in space!

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