Weekly Update #33 – Fire effects + Plans for battle techs

Hello and welcome to another weekly update!

Before we go on, an important message: Since we’ll be more busy with studies, we will post biweekly updates from now on. We still might have some posts in-between, but not necessarily with game updates. Of course, we’ll continue with weekly updates, when we find more time for CrossCode again.

For a change, we thought we’d make the whole update a bit more personal. So who exactly is doing what?

Technical Stuff

R.D. is currently working on the menu, making progress with tedious stuff like scroll panels (it’s too bad we can’t simply use HTML here, but nope: no support for blocky pixels D:).

I (that is… Lachsen) started working on the technical foundations for a guard option during battle, next to some integration work here and there. Also some optimization (our menus caused some serious slowdown – even when invisible).

Music and Graphics

Intero is continuously working on improving the (actually already pretty neat) soundtrack of the tech demo. Here you find another preview of the BGM running during all those puzzle segments.

We also got a couple of pixel artists who contributed a lot this week: T-Free and TQ… who we kinda missed to properly introduce so far. We’ll catch up on that later! (avatars are WIP~)

T-Free already helped us a lot already before the release of the first tech demo. He contributed some some really amazing effects. Now he’s back and sets our whole ball-throwing business on fire… quite literally with some “cool” heat element-mode effects:

heatbash1heatbash2Looks good? You gotta see that in motion. Yeah… we’ll provide a video once we have some more effects done and polished.

TQ/Teekuh/Vintal is another pixel artist helping us with environment graphics. This week he created some fancy text and logos for our new cargo ship scenario:

cargoship-logos

So… what do you think that logo is? :D

Planning around

We also had a really productive planning session this week, discussing aspects of the story as well as gameplay.

For instance, we decided on how exactly we want to integrate special techs into the battle system. That’s right, next to “real-time element change” you’ll be able to perform specials skills apart from the usual ball throwing – but those won’t be for free. You’ll consume Special Points (SP) whenever you execute a special skill – kinda like mana or magic points (MP). However, you will only have a pretty limited amount of SP and many ways to regenerate them quickly. Thus, there is little advantage in saving SP. The whole idea is to avoid the usual “MP saving” behavior that you find many classic RPGs. Because where’s the fun in battles if you ignore all the fancy stuff to preserve your MP

Actually we’d like to know your opinion on that one.
What kind of “special skill/magic cost system” do you like?
Classic MP? Cooldown? Or something else entirely?

That’s all for this week! Again, progress updates will continue biweekly from now on. In between we plan to have some other posts, discussing some design decisions of CrossCode and maybe game design in general.

3 Comments

  • That logo is the sun, half realistic(ish) and the other half blocky.

    I like the updates ;]

  • No problems with framerate drops during heavy fire-action? ;-)

    To answer your question:
    My favorite would be an MP-system related to the one “Metroid Other M” has. The MP-O-Meter pauses for a short time right after doing a special attack, and then starts increasing again. Of course, special upgrades — that the player can gather during his journey — could speed up the regeneration rate or extend the maximum amount of MPs. You see this system also in the upcoming 3DS game “Zelda: Link Between Worlds”, where it replaced the original system where you had to collect mana bottles. A very wise decision if you ask me.

    My wish is that Cross Code remains mainly action/puzzle-oriented, so that’s why I am voting for this kind of system! ;-)

  • Hi NicM!
    It’s the first time I hear that Zelda tries something new with respect to MP. That’s some nice development!

    I think you’ll be glad to know that we’ll go for a system where SP will regenerate pretty quickly. However we to have the regeneration not only driven by by time but also other factors, like how exactly you behave in battle.

    So far no framerate drops during the flaming action. All running in smooth 60 fps :D (well… at least on my machine… which already struggles with some modern computer games, I recently found out)

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