This is the last week we get to work on Celestialpod before the show. I’ve finished depth for all the levels, added all vfx, and optimized the game such that it runs on a tablet. A lot of the work this week was finishing depth and adding the level set pieces that Alanna made to pretty up the levels. In addition I worked with tyler to reduce the number of setpass calls per level. In the past our levels had a ton of lights in them, but those have been replaced by emissive textures and a single directional light. I also made lots of feedback VFX for the boss. When it takes damage it sparks and explodes, with passive sparks that get stronger and larger the more damaged it is.
We’ll be releasing the game soon on steam!
It’s been awesome working on Celestialpod with GWAMM making such an awesome game!
For the last couple weeks I’ve been adding a ton of depth to a ton of levels. We’re finally at our beta sprint and development is going really smooth thanks to our great producer Liam.
This week I added background planets, asteroids, ship thrusters, and depth to two levels being “spikes” and “lava lamp”. In addition I’ve been doing optimization changes and tweaking numbers in the game systems to make things more visually interesting. The most exciting of these is the revamped wall shattering. I’ve worked with Tyler our programmer to create a dissolve shader and better particle effects for when walls are broken. Now, instead of shattering into triangles and disappearing, the walls vaporize and burn away!
This week I worked on damage feedback and tweaked some VFX as well as the ongoing depth work. The squid and squid UI now get progressively more beat up as you take damage. We also added walls that appear behind breakable walls that show the remaining interior after you blow them up. Now instead of empty space, the player will see sparking wires and techy panels where the spaceship has been blown away. We’ve also added depth walls which greatly enhance the illusion of depth.
Here’s a gif of the new depth level as well as some broken walls:
This week I made the piranha and player death vfx effects and the depth for level 3 using an updated depth tool. We found that having to input specific values for our depth tools layer system to create parallax created unrealistic effects along with inconsistent blur. So we changed the depth tool to parallax based on an editable variable and the object’s Z position. In addition the blur calculation now takes into account the different scales of different objects in any given parallax layer.
Here’s the VFX
and here’s the working depth for level 3:
This week I worked on depth for level 2 as well as all the electric effects for the new jellyfish enemy. I’ve also made effects for the new sand dollar enemy. I’m starting to get more comfortable with the in engine depth tool and have made some good progress. The sand dollar VFX effect is like a scanning radar that turns red when the player enters it before playing an explosion. There are a lot of new assets for depth like scaffolding, panels, barrels, and pipes.
There’s not a lot to show as new art goes this week because my task was to remake all meshes in the game using blender. We plan on publishing our game and the yearly cost of a maya licence was cost prohibitive. So for the most part this week I learned to use blender and remade all applicable assets from scratch. This was a very tough process but it makes it possible to publish, which is really important.
On another note a lot of enemies made it into the game and I created two VFX effects for the new jellyfish enemy.
This week I worked on adding depth to the game using our depth tool and implementing the VFX. The depth tool has been made to control the hue, saturation, lightness, blur, and parallax of both textured meshes and sprites. Using this tool I can key in values for background objects to create the illusion of depth even in our 2D orthographic game. The VFX has also been added to the game, here’s a GIF of the WIP turret.
There’s still more feedback animation and VFX to me made for the environment and enemies. Here’s a picture of the first level with depth added. In a still image you cant see the parallax. Also There are only a few metal rectangles being used. I’m seriously excited about how far we can push the depth using the new depth assets we plan on making.
That’s all for this week, lots of technical tweaks and implementation.