As per usual with this project, it has been an extraordinarily long time since the last update. We started this project roughly 3 years ago now, and have not gotten past the concept stage of development.
The main issue with the project is how busy our (me and Nebster's) lives became. When we started we were both in High School and had buckets of free time. Then, I went to Sixth Form and Nebster went to do his apprenticeship and suddenly all this free time we had disappeared. Currently he is now working full time and I am heading to University (hopefully) at the end of this year after my gap year.
However, that being said I have rekindled my interest in the project. Several other games came up and faded away during my time since 2013. Every time I started development I had a far too big scope for the projects and just lost interest in completing them as a result. Since MDH was a combined effort, and was planned by two people, this idea is far more refined and has a more manageable scope than my own solo attempts at conceptualizing and developing games.
Where to start?
After losing the project files and having to recreate the project from scratch in game maker, I manged to regain the lost development and even add more features than before. This time I still have the project files and could easily continue from where I left off. There are too many issues with this, though.
Limitations of Game Maker
The engine I used for MDH was Game Maker 8, and I had bought a full licence for it. At the time, this was as fully-fledged a game engine as I needed it to be. But once more advanced features like lighting and AI were considered, the engine suddenly fell flat. While I could upgrade to GM:Studio, I have become far more accustomed with the Unity Engine now.
One of the main issues with Game Maker 8 is the lack of features, such as lighting. While I did manage to code my own basic lighting engine using drawing-functions to subtract from a grey-layer, it then caused further complications down the road. The grey-layer /HAD/ to be the top layer, if I tried to draw anything above it, it would simply not render. This meant that things like the UI then suddenly light up or were darker in places as they had to be under the lighting layer. This... was not right. UI should not be ligher in places because the room is lighter underneath it.
The Switch to Unity
This means a complete recreation of the game, for the second time now, but I believe that this change is for the better, and should have been done a long time ago. The Unity Engine offers far more for game development and now actively supports 2D games as well as introducing 2D-game-specific features.
I do not want to get your hopes up, so do not take this to mean that the game is definitely being made with a demo and release in mind. It is all up the in air still, I just want to try and get back to work on this project if possible.
TheRealJebus - Project Lead