dev diary #1

Hello everyone. I’ve been a bit busy as of late working on a major project: a video game! And I thought that as a fun way to keep people interested in what I’m working on, and as a good way to keep this blog updated, I would post updates about the game’s progress, and why and how I’m doing certain things in it.

I’ll start this out with what programs I’m using to make it. I’m using Aseprite to draw all the graphics. Nothing too special there; it’s a program specifically designed for creating and animating 2D sprites, and it works pretty well. And I’m using Famitracker to make the sound effects and music, if you can call what I’ve done so far “music.”

Now what I’m using to actually do all the programming and design bits is something called Pixel Game Maker MV. It’s a game creation tool put together by the team who made RPG Maker. I had originally begun this game in Game Maker, but ran into multiple problems. The big one being that I have no fucking clue how to actually program. And it doesn’t help that at some point in the last couple years, Google has completely lost any use and utility it once had. For example, I wanted to figure out how to implement playing a short death animation and restarting the level if you were hit by an enemy, Super Mario style. I instead got page after page of completely unrelated bullshit. Wanting to make a “Black Box” era NES-style game and instead being asked if I wanted to learn how to implement gun recoil physics. One, my game doesn’t use guns. Two, even if it did, I sure as shit would not put recoil physics in a fucking 2D shooter! So I gave up on working on the game for a while, until PGMMV went on sale and I got it after my partner said I should.

As someone who spent a lot of time as a teenager messing with RPG Maker, this program came pretty naturally to me. In very short time, I managed to have a game evolve from a single-screen platformer similar to something like Balloon Fight or Bubble Bobble into a multi-screen shooter. And of course, as my big rambling post about Mega Man probably gave away, that series is a big influence on what I’m working on.

My current plan with demos and builds is that I will release the most up-to-date build to Patreon, and then make the previous build public. And for Patreon, this will be available for anyone who backs me, even if it’s only $1. And I feel the need to talk about this, because I want to explain myself, and not come across as someone charging money for a demo. You know, I didn’t like it when Gran Turismo 5 did it, and I’m not about to do it myself.

The thing about spending all my time working on this, is that I don’t have the time or energy to make smaller art pieces, the thing that my Patreon backers pay me for in the first place. So I’m putting this together as a way of saying thank you for the support, and sorry for taking so long with making other stuff. Think of it along the lines of an “Early Access” sort of deal.

As for the actual design, I’m aiming for a short run time; about an hour to complete. Better than to cut things short than wear out your welcome. As for the amount of levels, that’s still very much in the planning phase. I’m still working on making graphics, in addition to making levels with what I’ve already made. But I’ll post a preview for a new enemy here for you all:

Anyways. Keep watching this space for more updates when more substantial things are done.