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In which the combat prototype sees work; as do the combat -mechanics and -AI; and said prototype is nearly ready to be released.

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Greetings and salutations! ^_^

This week's screenshot shows the main menu of the new combat prototype:

Screenshot from 2019 09 22 02 09

Indeed, the week just past was given pretty much entirely to that prototype, and to work on the combat mechanic itself:

The prototype itself is a fairly simple thing:

The player can engage in combat against two different enemies--one (intended to be) very easy, and one (intended to be) rather tough.

Instructions on how to play are given in a straightforward text-format, while a simple pop-up menu offers access to the combat-mechanic's various accessibility options. (The content of this options menu is pretty much copy-pasted from the options menu of A Door to the Mists, but without the latter's stylisation.)

Finally, there are buttons allowing the player to quit, or to view the credits/license text.

Screenshot from 2019 09 22 02 09 1

As I think that I may have mentioned, I intend to release this prototype in order to get feedback on the reworked mechanics and AI. However, even before that's done, it has already proven useful: having a quick-and-easy way to test the combat has allowed me to uncover a lot of issues--both bugs and points to improve--and thus to do a lot of fixing and tuning.

Screenshot from 2019 09 22 02 10

One particularly useful tool has been an on-screen visualisation of the AI's data: various bar-graphs and lines depicting particular values used by the AI. This has proven helpful in showing me how the AI is responding (or not responding) to the action, and thus providing clues as to how to improve it.

Screenshot from 2019 09 23 17 06

And while I won't call either the mechanic or AI perfect, not by a long shot, I do think that they are both very much better than their previous forms!

Overall, I think that I have the prototype pretty much ready, and the combat itself almost so. There's still a bit more work that I intend to do, I believe--but I'm hopeful of releasing the prototype within a few days of this blog-post. ^_^

That then is all for this week--stay well, and thank you for reading! ^_^

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