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Post feature RSS Pets and Abilities - (Game Dev Updates)

I'm happy to announce our Steam page for "Bloom: Memories" (an artsy RPG I've been working on for over 7+ years) is finally up for wishlists! Along with that, here is a video covering my latest progress with the game as I finish up.

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I'm happy to announce our Steam page for "Bloom: Memories" (an artsy RPG I've been working on for over 7+ years) is finally up for wishlists!

Along with that, here is a video covering my latest progress with the game as I work on finishing up. ((I do regular videos like this, along with looks back at the history of the game and how it has evolved))

-- Transcript --

Hey everyone, time for another update.

It’s been a busy couple weeks, so let’s go over what I’ve been up to.

First off is I’ve finished up the scripting for the mountain dungeon. Everyone walks their paths and all of the ways to solve the challenges are working. It probably doesn’t sound like much, since I was talking about it a while ago too….but trust me, this part of the game was a pain.

I’ll still need to revisit it a bit once the character sprites are imported in, but overall it’s ready to go.

Then I did some new art for icons and new world objects before I started to sort out the water area.

Now, I’ve known what I wanted to do with this area for a while. It was meant to be a bit more platformy, and giving the player a hover ability to go between platforms and islands… but I wasn’t too sure how I’d handle it.

With a bit of fiddling around I found a good way to control the collision switching through the system already in place. Godot actually makes it pretty easy with their animation nodes and collision keyframing.

So with the hover mechanic working, I then went onto the platform water creature.

It has a placeholder currently, but in the final version this will be a flat turtle that comes up from under gourds thrown into the water before splashing out and eating it.

The gourd also needed different versions depending on where you throw it, which I was able to do with a little work around of making the water collision actually spawn the floating version...instead of the projectile itself trying to spawn it.

Then it was onto working on the abilities of the water dungeon creatures.

Now with them I wasn’t too sure what I wanted….it had to be different than what was in the rest of the game…. So a simple projectile or melee attack was out of the question.

As I thought about it I was playing around some and I came up with a bubble character …. And then I figured I’d take that and wrap it into a sort of bubble bomb that the water dungeon frogs people would use.

I’ll also make the bubble frog use a similar attack centered on itself, giving the water area a much different feel in terms of the types of attacks found elsewhere. And, world wise, it just makes a lot of sense that the locals would be using an advanced form of some of the abilities found from the wild creatures in the area.

But the water area has more than just those creatures. So next up was the water wolf and puddle pup.

Again, I wanted to give these creatures their own flavor… and I’d been thinking they’d use some sort of water splash or something like that.

So the first attack I made was something along those lines. They’d create a water sphere that would float for a little bit and shoot splashes at the player.

But I just wasn’t liking it too much, so I went back and tried again…. This time making the larger one shoot storms at the player. I ended up liking that one a lot, it definitely was different than anything else I’d done….and storm wolf sounds fine to me.

So I carried it through to the puddle pup also. Making them create energy filled puddles to keep the player away and limit their movement.

After those, I was on a roll, so I kept going with abilities and began on the mushroom people.

Again, I wasn’t too sure where to go with these. But I was still trying to come up with something unique to fit the creatures and keep the gameplay interesting….

That was until my sister made a joke about eating them and them causing hallucinations…. Which I actually thought was perfect!

Well, not the eating them part, but hallucinations meant I’d have more freedom in what the actual effects were.

So I experimented with the look until I had a colorful spore attack.

These then have several different effects on the player that are randomized in. From thinking you are smaller and slowing you down, to greatly inhibiting your vision, to even illusions that will then attack you. I’m still trying to come up with more effects that will fit into this, so if you have some ideas feel free to put them in the comments. This dark forest area is the last area before the final dungeon, and I still need to think up some more obstacles there.

Anyhow, with all those abilities done for the late game creatures… I then jumped over to something I’d been planning for a long time… but wasn’t entirely sure how it would be implemented… the pets.

Originally I was planning on having a handful of pets the players could find and grow attached to.

I’d actually made the first pet back during the Prelude demo….with the wiggle mites to get past some world obstacles. These could be captured by making it happy, and then they would let you pick them up ...and they had an unlimited hunger to eat any thornvines nearby.

But as I was thinking of what else to add to that, I figured why not just throw in most of the creatures.

So that’s what I did, and I went through and picked out the creatures that weren’t too smart… to avoid the entire pokemon problem of really intelligent “pets”.

Then I was left with the question of how to let the players find them.

Now, this is where playing games comes in handy… because there are a lot of other games that have dealt with this problem out there. But the one I looked to as having one of the best and most open pet systems….was actually the old MMO star wars galaxies.

You see, in this game, players could find wild creatures all over the world. But now and then a player would encounter a baby version that could be tamed with the proper skills.

This seemed like a great and natural way to let the players know which creatures were tamable. And in the real world, getting a wild animal when it is a baby is probably one of the few ways you can actually make it a pet.

So I went ahead and babyfied the set of creatures I’d picked out. But just picking them up would be too easy…. So instead, like that first wiggle mite I’d made, I gave them each something that will make them happy and accept being picked up... which the players would have to figure out.

Except for the rock….drop rocks are always happy and don’t really care.

Next I had to figure out what the pets do.

So I first put in some blanket bonuses for having a pet in your pack….such as they will randomly cuddle the player to give them a heal, or they will start wiggling in your packpack to let you know to set them down so they can find a secret….

But I also wanted them to each have a unique flavor to experiment with. So I went through the list and gave each creature 3 “attachment levels”, along with a range of substantial bonuses to the player.

Everything from invulnerabilities to certain attacks or elements, to letting them find secrets much more often, to them giving you a special attack now and then, like the drop rocks at the highest level like to be thrown as a strong ranged attack.

Anyhow, you can only have one pet at a time, and after you find one it will unlock it in the sanctuary where they will be walking around to go get again if you’d like.

Currently there are 16 pet types, and I might add a couple more down the road. But the big achievement is having now finished all of the scripts which drive the entire thing.

So, yea, that’s what I’ve been up to lately. Now it’s just more filling out the last parts of the game and the scripts….then a sound pass.

But I think the biggest challenge currently is figuring out what to do with Ariel having turned into casper. I was hoping he’d show up at some point and at least send me the tool we were using to process the character frames into their scenes….but that hasn’t happened... so now I’m still sitting on a lot of unprocessed frames that are ready to be popped into the game.

Hopefully I’ll be able to find someone to help out with that soon….and then replace the placeholders for promotional stuff.

It can be pretty frustrating… but that’s how indie development goes I guess. A few steps forward, and a step or two back….

But, of course, I can still keep chugging away at everything else in the meantime, so stay tuned to see how it all comes together.

And also, if you like these videos and / or what I’m doing with Bloom, please do share it with others or post on whatever communities you happen to be in. I’m quickly approaching being done and I’ve been struggling to get the word out…. But that’s to be expected I guess, competing with memes is hard!

Anyhow, just gotta keep chuggin along right? Thanks for watching :)

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