Work began at 19:30 GMT on Saturday. I’ve recruited an artist and almost got terrain drawing correct (there are a few issues with corners). Currently focussing on getting the entity/event system running – this is one case where getting an @ walking around on the screen isn’t trivial.
Partly inspired by timerogue (a 2008 7drl that didn’t get very far), and Achron (a strategy game that lets units travel through time), this year I’m going to make an attempt at a roguelike with time travel-based gameplay. The player will pull off various bank/art gallery/museum robberies, until they get caught and some government people rope them into thwarting the plans of an evil genius in a volcano base.
Within the temporal bounds of each mission I’ll be aiming for total freedom in time travel – just decide to jump and set a time offset or absolute time, and you go there. Careful timing and flexible planning will be necessary to get around or defeat armed time travellers and guards. I’m not sure how much to reveal about the time travel mechanics at this early stage, but suffice it to say it will be easy to generate paradoxes (the simplest option being to take a step, go back 3 turns, and shoot your past self in the head), and I’ve spent a lot of time planning out how they should be dealt with (ie. not with immediate failure – some paradoxes may be desirable).
I’ll use SFML for display rather than libtcod, just because I haven’t had any difficulty with linking it on linux or windows. I’ll probably crib some display code from Surrounded.
For those curious, the Temporal Tumbledryer is a critical element in the cycle of stealing things, using the money to refresh supplies, and using the supplies to steal more valuable things. A very noble cause.
Well, there are lots of features I wanted that aren’t in it. But it’s playable, it’s very coffeebreaky, it can be very challenging, and it’s very prone to killing you just when you think you’ve won. Don’t let them get too close. Run away often. Use your explosives wisely.
I guess it turns out a worthwhile roguelike doesn’t have to have remote controlled brain slices.
Comments, feedback, bug reports, particularly along the lines of “Add in-game help as a bugfix or I refuse to play” can be posted here, or sent to quendus at google’s email domain. I’ll post to the newsgroup soonish.
Prerelease version. With 11 hours to go, any bug reports, complaints, flames, appreciation, comments, whatever would be appreciated. In particular, is there enough information in the interface to address the concerns previously expressed in comments?
Tested on Windows, Linux, OSX 10.4
Lots of progress. Scent generators do their jobs (when set on a timer), there’s a lot more information in the interface, the sound system is almost working (at the moment you can only hear explosions), holograms are almost working, monster info is displayed in a crude manner, and for the memory system to work I just have to hide the bits that are unknown. Messages and other big wodges of text behave nicely, there’s a speed system, both player and monsters can run, subject to the constraints of stamina (and running speed decreases as stamina is depleted). Screenshot and second prerelease will appear sometime-ish.
- remote controls
- brain slices
- working holograms
- gradated sensitivity to scent for monsters
- correct sound sensitivity (explosions make you deaf for too long, footsteps are inaudible)
- critical hit system
- option to pick up/put down/hide/activate/configure items (at the moment only throwing works)
Winning is now a bit too easy, because high explosives kill things very reliably. I’ll crank up the monster spawn rate when all the player’s nice toys are implemented.
It’s playable, it’s winnable, it’s losable. There are invisible explosions. There are also lots and lots of missing features. But any bug reports or complaints or recommendations would be appreciated! I’m particularly interested in how fast you move when you hold a key down, because scent maps take a lot of processing and some of the intended features will require more scent maps.
- Long messages and descriptive text don’t behave nicely
- On my monitor, blue on black is really difficult to read (any suggestions for alternative colour schemes?
- Memory is not bounded by number of monsters and items that exist, but by number of monsters and items that have existed in that run. I die or win before this becomes a problem, and the number of corpses you can make is bounded by your finite ammunition.
- It is not fun to have to inspect a monster by targeting it and pressing ‘i’ to find out how dangerous it is.
Explosions are implemented but buggy, monsters can follow your scent, monsters spawn, you start in a ship, tab targets a visible monster, the objective (which I haven’t written down yet) is almost accomplishable but not quite with the present equipment (I tend to die with the exit in sight), and I’m marginally less hamstertastic than yesterday.