By louissi

Moving to Unity

Francis and I have been working on Bunker Sim for more than a year.

Last week, at PAX East, it felt like it was worth every hour of our lives we put into it. We were showing off the game for the first time at the Armor Games booth. We finally got the chance to meet face to face with other team members we have been in contact for years over the internet.


Everyone was awesome and genuinely friendly. The amount of passion in these people and the whole gaming scene is just so inspiring. I couldn’t believe this was the first time they were building a booth because they just rocked it. We had a 10 feet tall castle wall!

The prize wheel brought so many players it was insane! We had smiles all around. Standing near the wheel just filled my batteries between demos.

The real reward was to meet with the players. It felt simply amazing! We shook so many hands because we wanted to thank everyone for waiting so long to try the game. The amount of smiles we got from people filled us with motivation and assurance that the game will be amazing when completed. Things seemed to make sense to everyone :D. One of my good memories is one little girl, maybe 6 years old, that actually sat in front of the game and did all the objectives. She was so clever.


We kept getting asked if the game is available, which felt great! It’s good, because not only is it a real motivator, but it also means our next decision is the right one.

When the project started, in December 2014, it was supposed to be a mini-game, releasing on a flash portal. The whole game, right now, is built in ActionScript 3 and could run in a browser. Sure, the design document contained a huge list of “nice to have”, but it was supposed to be a 4 months project. Things we could maybe add, you know.

As usual, I sort of went crazy with it, it kept growing and growing, and mid-way we decided to release on steam. I added all the “nice to have”, and then added some. To me, selling the game meant quality and performance, and I’ve put a huge amount of work to raise all my standards and to make it my best game yet.

Basically, Flash kept limiting us, and we want to release something up to standards with traditional Tycoon games we all love. We are simply asking too much out of it.

The game will be ported to Unity in order to fully realize our vision. We can only see bonuses to that decision. It’s what we should have done from the start. Having the whole game already designed, architectured, and most of the art made will really help.

Moving to Unity will allow:

– Way larger maps ( from 32 to at least 256 )
– 60 fps easy, instead of 30
– A better save files system
– Better visual effects, especially data visualisation
– Way more characters
– More features, more content

I leave you with a preview of what our environments will look like for combats and expeditions. Francis made a lot of those ( so far, around 80 ), so expect some variety :)





See you in a couple of months!

Cheers,
Louissi

New turn based combats

 

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Whoa! It’s already 2016!

It’s amazing how time goes fast, I feel I’ve been living in a cave with a computer this past year 😀 I’ve been quiet, more than usual, but it doesn’t mean I wasn’t busy! Quite the contrary.

 

Once you get a basic simulation running, all you want is to keep adding more stuff to it. Statistics, comfort ratings, combos, more jobs, more rooms, more everything. Once you get a system running in the limited time you gave yourself, you can’t help but see what a new, better iteration could bring. As the project grew, we moved from a web game to a steam release.

To me, it means that it has to be my best game so far, my best work yet, because releasing a retail game has always been a childhood dream.

In that regards, now is the time to announce yet a new feature that will enrich the game a lot!

Grid based combats

Protecting and caring for your survivors would be meaningless if you didn’t take them on adventures. When ready, promote some of your meatbags to explorators in your headquarters and prepare a nice little trip for them! Resources, items, make sure you bring what you need because their deaths are permanent!

Preparing an expedition (wip)
Preparing an expedition (wip)

Event

When a group knocks on your door or you encounter bandits in an expedition, the game will pause for a combat scene.

Based on a grid, characters will be laid down one by one, by clicks or automatically, starting with the shortest ranged characters.

The player will have the option for automatic layout or manual layout and automatic combat or manual combat.

Attackers will use the same automatic algorithms.

Characters stats and equipped items will greatly infl

uence the fight.

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Time to deploy your forces!
Where will you put him?
Where will you put him?
here?
here?
Great!
Great!
Time to fight! Seems like someone is ready to make a move.
Time to fight! Seems like someone is ready to make a move.
What will it be?
What will it be?
Lets move
Let’s move
Ah that's better!
Ah that’s better!
The door can shoot too!
The door can shoot too!

The combats will give an extra purpose to training your characters and making items.

Stay tuned for more previews this month!

 

Bunker Sim Expedition System

First of all, thank you again for such a good greenlight campaign! :)

Now, being underground is great and all, but what about the wasteland outside?
Surely you can’t be the only ones left.

In the last weeks I focused my attention on the expedition system. It still needs some love, but it is far enough that I can show you the idea behind it:

Once you’ve hired an expedition manager, you will be able to plan trip outside your shelter. When preparing, you will select a few people and resources and send them to explore the wasteland. Plan carefully, because what you bring with you will influence the events you will face and the length of the expedition! Items and clothes will play an important role in outside skills. Expeditions will also reward the risk takers with loot, merchants and new recruits… or flood them with bandits :)

I also started centralizing the controls so they can be changed. I added better time speed controls and did some minor adjustments to the HUD while I was at it.

I’m still touching up the HUD every day, searching for new ways to make the information more accessible and efficient.

Some screenshots:

New speed controls and expedition status.
New speed controls and expedition status.
Crew selection
Crew selection
Moving people around
Moving people around
Selecting resources
Selecting resources
When you reach a goal, you get an event like this.
When you reach a goal, you get an event like this.

Milestone 2: Unit Controls

Day/Night cycle

 

 

Recently most of my efforts have been concentrated on one subject: controls.

Unit controls are very important because it’s your main way of interacting with the game. I am inspiring myself from popular games like starcraft or age of empire. Right clicking will move your units, left click will deselect or confirm a prompt, etc. I already had a formation system and some pathfinding in place, but I needed to push the AI further and finish all the actions units can do in the game. While I was at it I also added a lot of random improvements.

Here is the complete list:

  • Around a 100 new sounds (!!!)
  • Fog of war ( this one was a big one )
  • Action bar for units and buildings
  • Unit recruiting from buildings
  • Unit queue of buildings on HUD
  • Hunting and Ressource gathering for settlers
  • New AI actions such as “escaping” for animals
  • Mounting units inside structures and attacking from them
  • 4 new tree variations
  • Re-animated catapult
  • Build menu for units that can build
  • Better targetting, units respond better to incoming attacks
  • Better squad position system ( right click and drag to spread the formation)
  • Portrait and name display
  • Resources and cost display
  • Population cap based on buildings
  • Better targetting of structures (walls are always chosen last)
  • Custom cursors
  • Unit selection
  • Day / Night cycle
  • Lights on buildings
  • + a lot of bug fixes and general code cleaning.

Next will be more map editor features and scenarios!
I am leaving you with those screenshots:

The new Fog of War
The new Fog of War
Tiles data used by the pathfinding
Tiles data used by the pathfinding
Day/Night cycle
Day/Night cycle
Preparing for battle
Preparing for battle
Recruiting units
Recruiting units

Watch towers

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Watch towers and general unit mounting is done! It was a bit complicated because I had to split the building’s assets in two parts: foreground and background. The way it is now it will be very easy to add more buildings in the future.

Here is a screenshot of what the game looks like at the moment:

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Click for full resolution

The AI also got a nice refactoring / optimization pass.

Workers hunting animals from farms will wait for new ones if they are all gone. That means resource collection is pretty much done on the coding side wich is pretty cool :)

Next up, building and recruiting!

Hunting & Gathering

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Hunting and gathering is in. Workers assigned to a certain farm will keep working on animals from that farm. Workers are also able to hunt wild animals as they flee for their lives. I also started adding agressive animals such as the giant spider, which attack you but still wield resources. Some animals, such as elementals, will wield other resource types. Imagine a level where you need to hunt down a golem to get the gold you need to build or research further.

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A preview of the action bar, used to control selected units and buildings in the game.
screen001
Workers, gathering wood and food.
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A large group of giant spiders attacking a bunch of wizards. Legend says fire is the best answer in these situations ;)
screen003
A busy day!

Next will be mounting units inside structures!
(these watch towers will have a background part)

After that, recruiting and building from the action bar!

I’ll leave you with this screenshot:

A large raid from the wildlings ( click to view full size )
A large raid from the wildlings ( click to view full size )

House of Wolves II: Age of Dawn

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The Age of Dawn has begun…

It’s a century before the events of Lord Vilereck. Your ancestor’s land is invaded by the Grand Desert of Malabhi. Crops wither, people are dying of starvation, and resources are exhausted. Most stay and blindly hope for change, starving and fighting for the remains. Hoping against hope, the most courageous men formed a caravan and called themselves “House of Wolves”, in honor of brotherhood, strength, and vitality. Mustering their strength, the House of Wolves left what was once a safe haven to face the dangers of the wild.

There is a long journey ahead of you. The wilds surrounding your lands have been know to kill even the strongest of men. Only you can lead your brothers to sanctuary.

A thousand pikemen and wizards facing catapults.
A thousand pikemen and wizards facing catapults.