TechDemo3Schedule

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Tech Demo #3 planned for next week

Artix Krieger | Sunday, January 14, 2024

January Progress Update

Tech Demo #3 is coming! So here is an progress update post on everything you need to know about AdventureQuest Worlds: Infinity.

Also, it has come to my attention that various awesome YouTubers have been making videos where they reading these posts and add commentary. A very helpful way of spreading what is happening with our video game community. Thank you! This is also why I will now be slipping in words like flibbertygibberygoogoo and spiffypantsgoblin for them to read. This is mandatory and contractually obligatory. Anyone who chickens out is a sniffleplumsnortersaurus.

*announcer voice*

Previously.... on AQWorlds Infinity: Z!

Our last tech demo was a success. Since then we have been working on the GIANT list of issues found in the last post. The programming team, which includes Warlic, Spider, Yorumi, Tunik, and Zhoom, have fixed most of the "big ticket items". They are ready for a new round of testing. Meanwhile the content team (Reens, J6... erm, Jx? or should it be JX?, Ghost, Nulgath, Diogon, Immortal Joe, and myself) have been hard at work breaking things that used to work and introducing brand new problems as we push the envelop of what this game can do. XD

No idea where to start....

So, this post is going to be a bit random.

So how about we start with.... MONSTER LOOT

Shiny Color-coded Monster Loot?

The mockup above was created by Diogon and posted on social media last week. It shows monsters dropping color-coded loot. A version of it has already been implemented on the tech demo server.

While the mockup image was well received by most players, it raised some serious questions by others. Does the color indicate the power or rarity of the item? Can you click it, or do you have to walk over it? Will my pet pick it up for me like an adorable little vacuum cleaner? How can I see the name of the items in it? Why are we not using the exact same loot system as AQWorlds?

These are all good questions.

Instead of trying to guess an answer... how about we just try all of these things out and see how it feels?

Seriously.

Why not? We only get one shot at doing this. Once we "gavel down" on the solution it will be very hard to change in the future. This is our one and only chance to play around and experiment.

It is important to note that nothing on the tech demo server is final.

Also.... we have more than just those little bags to work with!

Treasure Boxes

When loot drops, we want to know as much about as we can at a glance. If the color represents rarity, then the container art can help define the size, significance, or type of item.

JX drew these this week. I love watching his creative process from sketch to final art.

We can play around with these trying different things like putting icons of the contents on them.

The Undead Are Coming

Nulgath converted over an army of the dead... and Horks. Most of these monsters feature upgraded art. You will also notice fiery and icy particle systems in the hands of the skeletal casters.

Each monster is converted to bitmap art and then animated from scratch.

Now that he has re-animated a few monsters using the new system, is it bonkers how fast Nulgath is able to animate them.

Nulgath has also been working on something for an upcoming AdventureQuest Worlds release. (Pictured above)

Art Upgrades

The game's monsters and NPCs have been getting an art glow up by Aranx, Hikari, and Snowvers.

Some of the early changes that were posted were too extreme.... both the players and the team want the feel and style of the characters to to stay the same. So the goal is to bring the shading and art quality up to the level of the new things being made for AdventureQuest Worlds.

For example.... King Alteon's armor looks like gold metal... and his feet are more shapely. A lot of our older feet were very square.

JX has taken the role of Art Director and has been working with the artists upgrading the art to have this awesome and consistent feel.

Thok looks wicked!!!!!!!

Characters getting a glow up started with the NPCs in town and are now moving into Swordhaven....

A Plan to re-build the Main Story

"Some things just happen organically.... and this is an example of that."

It seems we are now converting maps, monsters, and NPCs in the order that the main story was released in. This is probably going to be our strategy moving forward.  We are starting with Swordhaven.... where the original undead invasion took place.

"Hey! But what about Gluttony and the Dragon's Lair!?"

Oops. I got ahead of myself. The upcoming tests will be focused on testing the fixes, loot experiments,  quest stuff, and then Gluttony & the Dragon's lair.

Gluttony currently has everything working except.... cutscenes.

Cinematic Cutscenes

This week we have been working on the process and tools to make "release ready" cutscenes. We are at like.... 60%. We had thought this was already working. However, when we went to make some stuff.... we encountered, uh, surprises. *Announcer voice* This week's surprise include.... localization issues, Mr. Guy concerns, there is no API to upload cutscenes yet, and everyone's favorite... which project should these cutscenes actually live in!? Spoiler: It is the maps project. Cutscenes now live in the maps project. Solving these problems is nothing new. Like Maps & Monsters before it... it is important to have a very straightforward and organized process for creating cutscenes. So Ghost (the animator) has been working working with Warlic, Tunik, and I on creating our cinematic cutscenes process this week.  Not sure if we will have something ready for next week's tech demo, but we should have the process working next week. 

Dialog Cutscenes

We have ANOTHER type of cutscene called a "Dialog". If you have been following this project, you may already know that these are a simpler type of cutscene which does not need to be hand-animated.  It started out as a pretty simple "Hey, can we have something like a visual novel engine inside of this game?" request. But when we saw how powerful it was, a lot of requests followed. This tool quickly became scope-creep city. We are basically creating a mini-version of Flash inside of our game project. Sorry Tunik! So, Tunik has been hard at work on this tool. When finished, any member of the team (maybe you too) would be able to create certain types of cutscenes without knowing how to animate or program.

Dialog Cutscenes

We have ANOTHER type of cutscene called a "Dialog". If you have been following this project, you may already know that these are a simpler type of cutscene which does

Tech Demo 3 coming next week

We have A LOT of things to test. Next week will kick off a large number of tests for AdventureQuest Worlds Infinity. As promised, players who supported the game by becoming a 15th Upholder last October will have access to all of the tech demos. But what about everyone else? Well, I talked to Alina and if everything goes well next week we will expand the criteria for participating. Which is a super vague way of saying, "We hear you that you want to help test, we have no idea how much room we will have for more testers, but after seeing how things go next week we will do our best to come up with something that does not anger players too much.... and also we should probably have giveaways for some of the tester slots too."

Personal note.... on Goals

Every year, around New Year's, I do some pretty intense Goal Setting. The Grandmaster of the Martial Arts school gave me and showed me how to use this super fancy-pants planner. So now, in this book I have all of these huge, crazy, ambitious goals.... about this game, our other games, and every other area of my life.... all written down with plans on how to complete them. But this year, in my gut, I feel like I can actually complete all of them. Do not get me wrong. In the past I have written some big, crazy goals that no one thought were possible (including me)... and they actually happened. Then I have also had years where there were ambitious goals that were far more reasonable that fell flat on their face. Perhaps the problem is that everything just takes a lot more time than I think it will. Because things that I set out to do years ago are suddenly coming to fruition. Many of goals written in my book are the same as last year, and the year before that, and the year before that. But this year, it is actually possible to complete 100% all of them. Finally. This includes, at the top of the list, launching AdventureQuest Worlds: Infinity for all players across computers, phones, and tablets. In my experience, when you reach the end of a difficult journey, there is always some sort of boss monster waiting for you. Some big challenge that you have to overcome before you are allowed to win. I wonder what that will be for us in this project. Whatever it is, I look forward to facing it and hope I can count of you joining the final battle with us. With that, may we both achieve all of the things we are setting out to accomplish in 2024.

Battle on!

Artix

 

P.S. Tech Demos 1 & 2 happened on the same day (in case you were wondering what happened to #2. We are going to simply number each one so we can say what happened on them.)
P.P.S. Be sure to wishlist AdventureQuest Worlds: Infinity on Steam

 

 

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