I added a bit more to dialog parsing today, so that as long as it’s not text that requires user interaction (like the traditional RPG chat logs), it can be anchored to a position relative to the “speaker”. It was another seemingly simple implementation that took much longer than I had hoped, but it was worth it, though it’s not completely finished either. This is so the player can see random NPCs conversing about unimportant stuff or enemies shouting orders without breaking gameplay mainly. I’m still exploring another font for the text, but not sure what is really appropriate, since this game isn’t necessarily medieval, but I also don’t want it being generic looking like so many RPGs tend to do (after all, font creation and/or licensing is serious business, much more than I had realized).
I toyed around with some deeper RPG interaction ideas, and may still use some of them, but not sure how much people will really like that. I just don’t think that a straight arcade-style hack and slash is going to keep people’s interest in a world very long, but I don’t want to overwhelm them either since the whole world isn’t open (in this game anyways).
I’m currently trying to fix a bug where Arashi can’t use anything if she’s facing left or up, it’s really odd since the math looks correct, but I needed a break from that and wanted to see a bit more of the engine at work. Since I will eventually be making real graphics for the forest, I decided to do some research on bamboo trees (I never even knew what they looked like full grown), and planted a few near the infamous tree stump and the lake… which I hope you noticed I took the time to draw much more acurately. The lake is semi-important since it is an automatic trigger if Arashi gets close to it, for this test level she is reminscing about going fishing with Ket later (well, he is a cat after all). Also, the bamboo is broken up into actual functional pieces unlike the elm trees to the east; the overhead canopy, the solid stalks at the base, and the subtle shadow overlay on the ground.
Basically, I’m prepping myself for the actual level design now, since I want to at least create the first checkpoint by the end of the month, but hopefully much sooner than that.