This is the alpha build of The Elemental, a platform active-strategy game. This preview of the game features the both the beginning game engine and previews of the environment engines. All assets and features these demos are subject to future change / modification.
UPDATE: Earth Element
I've been quiet for a long time! I've been working on the Earth element for while... too long, really. It has been the most difficult part to code so far because of it's complex nature. Here is what's in this update
* Earth Element (Illusion shatters not in place)
* Updated HUD mouse icon
* Fixed Fire Wall skill icon
* Modified Fire skills and stats
* Enemies now take damage when they fall
And here is what I will be working on for the next update:
* Air Element
* Void Bearer (Supporting - healing - ranged)
* Void Popper (Suicide bomber)
* HUD update on primary skill (try to make the interface more user friendly)
* And who knows what else!
Too many skills?
I've gotten some great feedback so far - you've given me things to work on, which is good! However, one consistent issue that is brought up by multiple people is whether or not 5 skills for each element is too much.
I think for now I will avoid cutting down on the number of skills per element. I want to first see if these skills will work or not and, if people find it is too confusing, I will slash the number of skills to a more reasonable number.
Here are a few ideas I had to maybe help with the learning curve that would be involved in learning 25+ different skills across elements:
* Have the name of the element on each skill icon. This way when it says "Meteor Shower" you can guess, even without playing the game, how that will work.
* When you right click on a skill icon, it gives a description of the skill. (I will add an option to disable this in the options menu in case you don't want it getting in the way.)
* When you are in casting mode for a skill, it gives a small descriptions of what that skill will do in one of the corners of the HUD. (It would also be possible to deactivate this in options.)
* Add a specific, in-depth tutorial section for each element, describing each skill and its uses in detail.
As another point, you aren't switching between these skill sets all too frequently. You could even absorb the one set you like and try to barrel through the whole game this way. However, that might become difficult because some enemies will be easier for one element to handle just by design. So, if a player does feel bogged down with the sheer number of skills and tactics, they can easily just stick to one style of play that they like. It is just in the interest of the player to learn all of the elements so that you can absorb and use them based on the challenge presented.
If you wish for a preview of its skills, read the spoiler below:
DOWNLOAD NEW UPDATE
NOTES ABOUT THIS VERSION
KNOWN GLITCHES: Fire Wall might trap enemies inside it and kill them VERY quickly.
FRAME RATE: Right now, the enemies do so much collision line checking that, when there are many of them, the frame rate may drop. (The frame rate is now optimized at 50 instead of 100.) I will attempt to streamline their programming to make it faster.
GRAPHICS: All graphics here are placeholders or are incomplete!
ENEMY AI: Enemy AI is very basic and rather stupid. I'm having trouble balancing enemy intelligence and game optimization. Although I still want want to point out that these are the most basic type of enemy in the game: they are meant to be easily defeated. No single enemy will be all that versatile, but different enemies will have different behavior patterns that will present different strategic puzzles.
RESOLUTION: The game is right now optimized for a widescreen laptop, so it may look a little weird on a conventional desktop monitor. I will add screen resolution options later.
ELEMENTS BALANCE: Adding a new element brings with it a new challenge: balancing them against each other. I won't be able to figure it all out right now, but when all of the elements are made and all the enemies created, balancing will be a huge focus of mine.
Screenshot of current alpha version.
Landscape engine: Terra.
Landscape engine: Ventas
Concept Art: Acritar Architecture
Taking my cue from ArenaNet, I have decided to declare my purpose and design in this game in a Manifesto of sorts. In mast past projects I have just created them for the sake of making a game, but with The Elemental I have invested literally years in the slow design process. Here is my manifesto:
The goal of this project is not just to make a good video game, but to make a work of art in the combination of Music, Story Telling, and Artwork. I want to tell a compelling story in a world that is rich in history and culture. I want to create an environment that draws the player in and compels them to explore for the sake of discovering a beautiful world. I want to create a soundscape in my music and sound design that draws out the "spirit" of the world and the story. The medium I have chosen to do this in is through a video game, and so I also intend to support all of these goals with fun, compelling gameplay that makes the player think without punishing them.
This game has gone through many iterations that I have posted from time to time here on the forum for the past five years. I have been developing this game in my spare time for so long, and I am very excited to finally have a complete, functioning engine that finally lives up to my original vision for this game.
I’ve had a very hard time describing what this game is! It is a platform game, but it’s unlike anything I’ve ever played before. The gameplay is centered around absorbing elements from your surroundings and using them in combat. Each element has a unique style of gameplay determined by the skills and abilities they all possess.
These skills are used in a very active, strategic way: Place a wall of fire on the ground to hold your enemies back, reverse their gravity, teleport your enemy into a pit of nearby lava – the possibilities are endless.
The elements and their styles are listed below:
- FIRE – This fulfills the role of the classic RPG mage, creating meteor showers, throwing fireballs, and knocking enemies away with large explosions. Fire element relies on using enchantments to augment its skills to keep enemies back and pummel them in groups.
- EARTH – An element of manipulation and illusions, Earth gives you the power to remove the gravity from your enemies, throw them any which way you like, or twist their perception of reality with illusions.
- WATER – This element is a dark, mysterious power. With Water element you can become a mist, allowing you to either be invisible to your enemies or dissipate and reform anywhere. You also have the ability to set traps for your enemies.
- AIR – Keeping your distance and positioning are key with Air element. Place fields of energy in the air that affect your attacks that pass through them and can be destroyed by you for different effects. Strategic placement of these fields and using Air’s flying ability to position yourself around them are key: the further you are from your enemy and the effects put on your attacks increase your damage.
- ENERGY – A composite element formed from all four other elements, Energy give you the power over elemental Spirits, making it the Summoner element. Summon three different spiritual beings and command them on the battlefield, stealing health from your foes to benefit you or your summons.
Each of these elements have five skills: one primary skill that, 3 secondary skills, and one healing skill. The primary skill has three different versions of it that you can use. Every element also has a unique attack skill and a special ability. Since in this demo only fire is available, here is the skill list for Fire (The ability for Fire is still being designed… it’s the one ability that has yet to be determined):
PRIMARY SKILL: Enchantments (While the enchantment lasts, your attacks have different effects on impact.)
- Enchantment of Flames (Your skills catch enemies on fire.)
- Enchantment of Power (Your skills give you back some energy.)
- Enchantment of Healing (Your skills heal you a small amount.)
Skill 1: Fire Wall (Cast a fire wall on the ground. Enemies cannot pass this wall and are knocked back if they touch it.)
Skill 2: Burst (Blast a ring of fire around yourself. This attacks does minimal damage, but knocks back all nearby enemies.)
Skill 3: Meteor Shower (Create a meteor shower that lasts for 10 seconds. The meteors explode when the impact the ground.)
Healing Skill: Flaming Invigoration (Heal yourself a small amount and create a small AoE burst around yourself that does very minimal damage.)
Attack: Fireball (Normal: A small bolt of fire that does minimal damage to a single target. Charged: a more powerful attack that explodes for AoE damage.)
Ability: In Progress
Walk: A and D
Dash: A+A or D+D (Costs 5 energy)
Double-Jump: W+W (Costs 5 energy)
Skills: 1,2,3,4, and 5
Left Click: Cast, examine, read, interact, talk
Right Click: Cancel casting
The graphics in the Alpha are obviously placeholders. A few skills have effects, but they are going to change. The terrain is going to be a painted style done in Photoshop. Here is a topic I started a while back featuring the terrain engines I've made. These are also undergoing big changes... but it gives you the basic idea of how it will look in the end.
Edited by IKSB, 22 May 2012 - 05:04 PM.