Just wanted to update you all on what’s been happening for the last month or so. ^_^ Before I do though, I wanted to give a shoutout to a couple of very generous donators whom I greatly appreciate. Thank you very much to the following people!
So, starting off, I want to discuss a couple of things and what the plan is moving forward! First, I’m going to talk about the character creator and the progress regarding that. Second, I’ll talk about the Save/Load state and what the plan for that is, the GUI will come afterward, and then Player Housing and I’ll talk about the main city Map as well. Hopefully by the time I finish this post, I’ll have a video, or a couple of pictures to include.
I’m happy to say that the character creator is progressing nicely. But honestly, half of the viewer’s production so far has been me learning HOW to do it, practicing something, failing and then trying something else and having that work, haha! But anyway, the viewer is coming along and I have all the major sketches ready to be darkened once I finish off the clothing.
There are 16 starting hairstyles which can be changed at anytime (assuming the player can afford it), these include bald, 4 short styles, 4 medium styles, 4 long styles and 4 very long styles, there are also eight clothing pieces; 4 tops (a tubetop, a haltertop, a tanktop and a leather poofy sleeve top) and 4 bottoms (short shorts, a miniskirt, a long skirt and a pair of tights) which are interchangable at will with far more to come.
In short, there are a lot of pictures…over 90 so far; breastsize, lipsize, hipsize, buttsize, hairstyles, ear-type, fingernail length, tail-type, scales, feet-type, pregnancy, fur, tattoo and piercings and so on. But for the time being, I think these are sufficient to get the player started on the adventure. I can always add more upon request, or at my leisure as production goes on. I can also color them production goes on too so little by little it’ll improve.
As for the character creator itself, I have completely finished the main coding for it and all of the questions therein. I think there are around 24-25 which determine your upbringing, family history, your appearance and several secret variables which determine how villagers will react to your character. The creator is a little barebones in the looks department right now but as time goes on, I can make it prettier. Looks are easy to change or update.
(Check it out below. As a warning there is NSFW imagery. I have provided a .MOV and .MKV — If you need any other formats let me know. Also, keep in mind what is shown in the video is just an alpha layer test. I also want to redo the hip-sizes a bit so some of the clothing on the top half of the body doesn’t clip.)
SAVE AND LOAD
This brings me to the Save/Load system which in my opinion is one of the most important aspects of the new game, especially since this very system is what plagued the first iteration of the APOCAMORPHOSIS in Quest for YEARS and is what initially led me to find a new engine to continue production in. I couldn’t seem to fix it because Quest was a hodgepodge of coding and programming languages with fixes built over fixes. Highly unstable to say the least. I do have a special place in my heart for that engine but…unfortunately sometimes we have to leave things behind in order to grow.
I’m happy to say though, the SAVE/LOAD system in Unity will be much faster and way more reliable. The idea for it is; I specifically want it to be able to save all rooms, player states and object variables, and also load those variables just as they were saved. Like if the player drops an item in their home, I want the item to be saved to that spot, or any storage containers that might be within. If they increase their height, their height will be saved.
Right now, it works on a basic level but isn’t incredibly nice looking. As progress continues, I’ll work on making it prettier and more efficient. I’ll keep everyone up-to-date. Hopefully, it’ll be just as easy to continue in my game as it is for people who play mobile games. Download new update; hit play, game continues is my dream for it.
And now, let’s discuss the GUI; Game User Interface. This is what the player will see as they play the game. The design is wholly original to AUVORA and I’ve designed it with a couple of important things in mind, including; ease of understanding and access, keeping it simplistic and making it so that the player can stare at the screen for long periods of time without hurting their eyes. With that in mind, this is the design I went with…
The top image in the link is the original template I came up with and designed, and the bottom is the more detailed template of what it will look like in game. I really hope you guys like it!
Personally, I think it’ll be really great and I have a lot of confidence in the design. It’ll also give the player information without overloading you with too much text.
One of the first surprises I want to spring on all of you is that AUVORA is starting off as a kind of life-sim surrounded by adventure and danger which you are free to participate in or ignore. The start of the bigger adventure as experienced in APOCAMORPHOSIS is just around the corner however and will be lingering and pulling the player toward it. Will you heed the call of the adventure or do you just want to stay in the town and live your life? It’s completely up to you. Best part about it as well is that you can bypass the town whenever you wish. Or you can stay for a couple of months until you build up your funds and then move on accordingly. Alternatively, you can just better your living situation, work, earn money and get a family, protect the town or pleasure the people there for as long as you wish.
The first major section that I’ve just finished writing is the player housing which turned out to be around 15,000 words of description. This is where you will live, rest, sleep and raise your family. Your home can be upgraded five times in total if you desire for such and is a massive storage area for your convenience. You also have to pay rent on it which is 100 gold every 10 days or so (subject to change). In addition, you can customize certain aspects of it and keep pets — basically, you make it your own. And you’re free to sell it anytime. This means, yes, you can be homeless or you can upgrade your house enough to afford one in a more expensive district. The sky is the limit ^_^
Speaking of districts…the map for the town Ajun (June) is more or less ready to go. There are 39 points of interest/places to visit planned right off the bat when you start in the main area of the town (this is not including areas outside of the village itself which I call ‘Outer Ajun’). There’s…
(Normal Commerce District/Normal Housing)
(School + Law Enforcement, Guilds)
(Rich High Priced District/High-End Housing)
(Housing District + Slums + Refugee Camps)
Now, I’m aware that having a town with four separate Districts and basically 40+ main rooms will be quite daunting for some people. Not to mention, I know that navigating in text adventures can be not only confusing but outright frustrating as well. But I think I came up with a clever solution to help ease the player until they become more familiar with the town.
The first solution was separating each District into smaller Blocks. For example, you have…
East Ajun, Block 1
East Ajun, Block 2
and so on.
On each of these blocks will be several locations which the player can travel a loop in and when they are ready to leave that loop, they simply click a button on the Compass Rose and it will take them to wherever they want to go next.
The second solution is continuing the trend I did in APOCAMORPHOSIS; having a detailed description of where an exit will take the player. This will allow the player to figure out what their next course of action is and allow them to plan accordingly.
The third solution is the city MAP itself which I designed. When visiting a new room or District, all the player has to do is click the map and it will show them exactly where they are in the town. Hopefully that will also help them triangulate their current position and help them figure out where they want to go next.
And finally, the fourth solution will be allowing the player to simply “jump” to whatever location in the town they want to go. So if you type; “Go Kiki’s Bakery” the player will be automatically transported there. When they are ready to go home, if they are inside of the city walls, typing “Go Home” will transport the player there instantaneously. The only downside to this solution is that you might miss random events.
Let me know what you guys think about this or if you would like to see the map so far.
This finally brings us to the future. Having learned a couple of lessons from APOCAMORPHOSIS’ production, I know exactly how I want to handle what’s coming up with AUVORA. Simply put, I will create all the blank rooms of the town first and how they fit together. Then I will do the descriptions for all those places one at a time. After that, I’ll add in each person and their descriptions to each location and then from there I will add the other options.
Once the main town is finished, I will do the same for ‘Outer Ajun’ etc, the more dangerous areas; the farmlands, the forest, the river and all of that.
So what is officially next? Aside from working on character viewer clothing and the art for the Afflictions, I’ll be starting on all of the town location descriptions. My goal is to finish all of them this month. I also, want the GUI to be implemented, the Saveload System to be ready and I want to start adding in the character viewer elements.
A NSFW button has also been added which can easily be turned off and on. This will remove any NSFW questions/content from the game and will allow me to essentially split it in two versions without any trouble at all.
That’s pretty much it for the time being! The important thing to take away from this is that I don’t feel overwhelmed in the slightest and things are coming along very smoothly. However, if you guys have any questions at all or concerns of any kind, please feel free to get in contact with me via the following…
Until then, see you guys out there! I’m looking forward to speaking with each of you!