Devblog—April 18, 2017

Hit my first major bout of burnout.

Happens so suddenly. First you’re working, then you’re not, and it’s like everything your brain can do to not do the thing you want it to do. I sometimes feel like being a producer in this day and age is a lot more difficult with all of these immediate distractions. When you’ve got Reddit, Facebook, and Steam, I marvel that things even still manage to get done on people’s spare time. But they do, and so it’s time to get back at it.

VITACORP

  • Vitacorp officially functions from start to finish. As with the prologue run, it’s not pretty necessarily, but it functions. I had a lot of problems with a few triggers that broke when I changed a goal name but everything seems to check out.
  • Plugged in the final combat. It’s a trigger-laden mess that’s going to require severe playtesting with both decker and non-decker PCs.
  • Added one final “room” which is just a streetcar for a short getaway conversation.
  • Added a few dialogue options to some older dialogues. Because you can’t have too many extra dialogue options.

At this point, it’d be more helpful probably to talk about what I still need to accomplish, and how I plan on going about it.

  • I need to fix animations in the standoff vignette. I think I’m just going to teleport Kate and Ben to their respective positions at the start of the dialogue; the other option would be to steal them from player control and run them into place, but I think teleporting will work cleanly enough. The option to KO the elf may have to come in the form of a conversation end animation that launches into a new conversation. I’m going to take a look at the conversation in HK where Strangler Bao offs the captured cop to see how they pulled that off and see if I can steal anything from there.
  • I have a second High Threat Response Team waiting in an offstage closet. I need to check with playtesters to see if additional combat is warranted. Right now, I’m beating the final combat pretty handily with a 100 karma PC, but the players won’t have 100 karma; so I’ll want to check with some playtesters to see if more combat feels good or feels like it’s dragging out the end of the mission.
  • I need to add some effects to the streetcar so it feels like a streetcar. Just requires some FX testing, I think.

After that, it comes down to finishing up the player home and devising the hub. Sadly, I’m coming to the conclusion that the hub that I’ve been working on won’t work for the story I’m trying to tell. At least, it won’t feel New Orleans-y. This is not entirely unexpected; I was just playing around, largely, with exterior map assets and didn’t know what I was making. In fact, I based it off a much larger fictional cyberpunk city. But as it stands, I right now do not have a hub designed, and that needs to change, pronto.

For the playerhome, most of the architecture’s done. I need to go through and tag all of the props then create the trigger set that will build the garage around the character’s skillset upon first load, then start working on the mission computer and all the conversations therein; in these early builds, the mission computer will be my way of circumnavigating not having a hub for playtesters. So that’s pretty important to get up and running ASAP.

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Devblog—April 3, 2017

Here’s the problem with having ambitions: I feel like I cannot meet them.

Life happened a lot this past week, and I got not a lot done; coupled with, I dunno, creative anxiety, and it feels like I didn’t get a lot of stuff done. Still nothing new for playtesters; a lot of last week went into Floor 45 of Vitacorp, and I’m barely into testing the final fight sequence. It’s a lot of smoke and mirrors with the trigger system of the Shadowrun Editor, and make no mistake, it’s a lot of work. That said, I’m so close to the end of designing this run (at least this draft) that I can taste it.

Scripting is hard.

It makes sense in my head, and in a weird, almost masochistic way, I almost enjoy doing it, but it is hard. And because I’m not good at it, I know it’s messy. I know there are things I’m overlooking when all I want to do is polish dialogue. So while I can say I added some 10-20 triggers and as many regions, as well as a new combat sequence and a new dialogue, that just doesn’t feel like enough to me, and I don’t really have any new good screenshots to show off. I feel kinda bummed. Need to do better. Need to push harder. I’m staring my laziness, apathy, and mid-project abandonment tendencies in the face knowing full well I’m capable of realizing this project.

But still, progress is progress, and so any week (and any day) I add to the project, I am happy. Because the alternative is no progress.

For now, meet Delacroix.

Delacroix will be your crew’s close-range specialist. But things don’t start off all sunshine and flowers with the shadowrunning adept. She’s damn near full-blooded cajun, and has a temper one should expect of such.

While it’s true that adepts focus on melee-range combat, “Del” is packing a secret weapon in her armor-piercing manaball. This deadly AoE spell has deadly accuracy at close range, allowing Delacroix to damage even high-dodge targets, or multiple targets en masse.

If I figure out crew advancement, and the mod progresses far enough to put it in, I’ll probably do something similar to Gaichu’s progression tree, with options to build Delacroix into either a formidable tank, or a powerful bruiser with buffs to her damage and manaball utility.

Unfortunately, that’s all I’ve got for this week. So, stay tuned, and we’ll work through this together!