Monday, 1 October 2012

Encircled has health regeneration and is much more likely to be winnable

Tiny update to the code, big difference to gameplay:
  • Gave all actors small level-dependent chance of health regeneration when standing still. This means that the player doesn't have to die on the first level where an enemy has a ranged weapon. I was able to get to level 9 of normal mode before encountering a crash which I think was also fixed in this update (number-flashing routine). Before now, this problem meant I died on level 5 or before.
  • Alter AI to take advantage of regeneration, and to make bosses move more freely when the player is far away (so they don't get stuck in corners permanently)
  • Update colour display information on entering a new level
  • Improve number-flashing routine

Same download link.
More likely to be winnable, but still very easy to die.

Wednesday, 19 September 2012

Encircled has a tutorial!

And the tutorial has text!

Something like 50% of the initial playtesters complained about being dropped in an abstract world with no instructions when they loaded the game. Quite understandable.

However, figuring out which mechanics need to go in a tutorial and writing terse, clear, easy-to-read prose that will explain those mechanics is a time-consuming task that I only just managed to finish now.

But now, Encircled is accessible to people who don't have me on the end of an IM system, don't like reading readmes or built-in help systems, and don't like to have to figure things out for themselves.

Hopefully that demographic includes some people who will enjoy the game.


Next on the RL agenda: planes, Purkinje cells, normal vectors, and parallel fibres.

Monday, 17 September 2012

ARRP: Encircled and Mutant Aliens update 4

For this year's Annual Roguelike Release Party I've updated Mutant Aliens! and Encircled.

Mutant Aliens! update 4

 * Draw bright colours for visible things
* Stop drawing things that are in LoS but out of visual range
* Don't generate aliens with identical representations
* Completely prevent player from being "trapped" (escape was still easy with explosives) when the ship crashes into a building (previous fix only prevented most such cases)
* Fix autotargetting so that it doesn't get confused when the previous target is alive and out of sight
* Allow player to close the door (but not fly away) when the transmitter is destroyed and an alien is in the ship
* Notify player when hit by an explosion
* Don't allow explosions at the corners of the map to break the program
* Choose transmitter location more carefully
* Notify when an explosion happens
* Monsters no longer spawn in player's visual range :3
* Ask for device time and delay before targetting throws
* Put transparent windows in buildings, make doors opaque, randomly turn some doors into floors
* Overhaul terrain destruction - different terrain types take different damage amounts
* Cannon shots can destroy walls and windows (walls unreliably)
* Add critical hits (shoot a monster several times to figure out where it's vulnerable)
* Hologram, sound, scent, and brain devices all give LOS to the player, so they now function as spy cameras as well as distractions
* Overhaul message display to allow partial messages in the message log.
* Include monster health/stamina descriptions, sense descriptions (don't need to be discovered) and finer stat descriptions from Mutant Aristocrats!
* Alter sound levels to allow movement to actually be heard
* Make monsters screech 75% less often
* Make monsters' decision about whether to run slightly more sensible
* Draw running monsters with capitals, draw near-death monsters in red

Encircled, version 0.4.1

* Menu system, including online help
* 6 play modes: standard, tutorial, two quick modes, unlimited mode, and munchkin mode
* Much more interesting level generation
* Offer to dump (very minimal) character stats on death/victory
* Flash damage amounts (like in Sil), remaining HP, and culprit of each attack.
* Option to change animation delay for damage flashing.

Saturday, 25 August 2012

Encircled: 60HRL

Download link.

Two and a half days isn't bad. It's got everything I wanted except an evil challenging AI for the bosses (they just run away). Their now-smart minions totally make up for it, though. It still doesn't have any semblance of plot or background, just because I haven't the faintest clue what kind of world this gameplay would make sense in (aside from Conway's Game of Life).

I verified that the game was winnable against mindless random-walker zombies, but I was too busy coding the AI (up to the 60HRL deadline) to test if the AI is actually beatable. So, good luck with that. I'll be putting an effort into winning and post a blog if I succeed.

Summary from the forum thread:

Unlike every other roguelike out there, you can only attack if the terrain surrounding you matches a pattern on your weapon, and you can only hurt someone if the terrain surrounding them matches a pattern on your weapon. All the enemies have the same restrictions.

Slightly inspired by rogue rage, you automatically attack every turn if you can. All you have to worry about is where to go and whether to pick up a different weapon off the floor.

Objective is to slay a certain number of boss enemies on each level. All the other enemies can be ignored, but they'll do their very best to hinder and hurt you.

The dungeon is initially just a random mess of walls and floors, but as you play a level it gets restructured by whoever stands on a terrain alteration button - as long as someone does that, the dungeon will change so that their weapon patterns are more prevalent.

Please comment or email me if you try the game, and especially if you win.
Encircled running on Linux over ssh.

Totally surrounded by 'b's. NOT THE 'B'S! Equivalent to death without an appropriate weapon.

Doing reasonably well on level 1.
... and I just noticed that "hlth" and "wepn" are the wrong way round. That'll be fixed for ARRP, if not sooner.