In my fantasy RPG "The Testament of the White Cypress", a solitary monk travels through a post-apocalyptic wilderness to reach an enormous monastery known as Valisade. Gameplay will involve ranged fighting with bow-and-arrow, management of food and shelter, and several different magical powers. The length, difficulty, and geography of each journey will be procedurally generated, and the selection of story elements presented in a given playthrough will vary. "Cypress" is an HD remake of my earlier work "Sanctuary". In this expansion and re-imagining of the original, every single object and animation is hand-painted on watercolor paper in mixed media (acrylic artist paints and colored pencils). Currently in production and slated for a Summer 2014 release on Windows, Mac and Linux. "The Testament of the White Cypress" is written entirely in Common Lisp.
This week's work on my new adventure game "The Testament of The White Cypress" involved painting plenty of new art, and great deal of progress on the underlying Common Lisp software powering the game's AI, object interaction, and user interface.
First up, the game runs at 1280x720 as the default resolution but now upscales properly to 1080p HD with no loss of detail. Although the demo videos linked below are in 720p, I have a nice full-resolution still shot for you here at IndieDB:
Click the "View Original" link to see the native-resolution still frame. Notice how the text and objects do not pixelize at all. This is because the art in "Cypress" is stored internally at 300dpi and then smoothly scaled for display by the video hardware.
And now I've got three new 720p videos to show you, displaying newly coded features and new content. (Be sure to click the HD button for better quality.)
First, we've got some new items and locations to explore in this video:
Our second video shows the new conversation system, inspired by the mouse-driven conversations in the famous Ultima series.
And finally, the biggest news this week is multiple AI's can simultaneously pathfind around obstacles now. In this video, I click where I want Geoffrey to go, and he pathfinds to that place without becoming hung up on corners of various obstacles placed in his way. Lucius, in turn, periodically pathfinds his way to wherever Geoffrey is standing, and thus they follow each other:
Notice how there are no frame drops or slowdowns, even when several characters are pathfinding. (As a side note, I wrote my pathfinding implementation in 2006 but recently resurrected it for Cypress, and it
runs very fast in SBCL.) This will support my goal of defining combat in Cypress as one or two monks against a small number of individually intelligent enemies---at most a handful. (Whereas 2x0ng set the user against hordes of dumb robots that didn't pathfind.)
I've also implemented z-depth-correct rendering and picking for the inventory drag/drop system, painted plenty of new terrain, and worked more on the story and design documents. I can't wait to update you next week about all the progress I'll make in the interim!
I hope you've enjoyed the new videos. Please watch this space for my about-once-weekly project updates; you can click "Track this game" on IndieDB if you'd like to be notified of new articles and videos
related to "The Testament of The White Cypress".