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Post news RSS Dev Diary #11 - User Interface, Blood Effects & Shrines

This update talks about the user interface changes we've made based on feedback from the Pre-Alpha and the ability to save your progress and raise your fallen enemies.

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New Logo

This update marks an important milestone in the development of Lord Of Decay. You can reanimate your fallen enemies and Flesh Crafting 1.0 is now complete.

There are still some other features to develop e.g. NPC dialogue, quest tracking,skill system, etc. but this means that we have successfully completed all the core features that make Lord Of Decay special.

We also managed to squeeze in some bug fixes, balancing tweaks and playability changes from the Closed Pre-Alpha testers.

Reanimatable Corpses

The true strength of a necromancer is the ability to turn fallen enemies into loyal minions. Now a skeleton corpse will appear in place of an enemy where they fall dead.

This looks a little crude and requires a little more visual flare, but it completes the core of the gameplay.

Lord Of Decay Corpse

Flesh Crafting UI

The core of the Flesh Crafting system has been in place for some time, but I finally managed to get the user interface working which stitches the whole thing together.

Simply drag a body part from the list onto an equippable slot and viola; you have customised your minion.

The UI is somewhat underwhelming next to the video we showed back in September 2015.
Don't panic. I'm working my way up to it. It's coming

Lord Of Decay Flesh Crafting UI

Quick Item Menu

Our pre-alpha testers reported that the health and mana potions were too far away from the WASD keys and made it difficult to use a health potion at a critical moment. It also meant that they were a sitting duck whilst moving between the WASD keys and Action Bar keys.

To resolve this we added the Quick Item menu that pauses time and presents you with usable potions by clicking with the mouse or using corresponding key 1 or 2. Gameplay is more fluid and almost effortless now.
This also makes room for more skills on the Action Bar.

Key bindings changed to better support this. Q now opens the Quick Item menu and Tab switches between weapons.

Only 2 potions right now, but we will soon add a Blood Vial to top up your Blood Meter and Cure Potion to remove a combat effect e.g. Fire, Frost, Shock, etc.

Quick Item Menu


Melee attacks are limited by stamina in great RPGs like Skyrim, Lords of the Fallen, Dark Souls, etc. This is so the player cannot spam the attack button and you need to put some more thought into your tactics.

When using melee attacks your stamina will reduce. When your stamina is too low you will not be permitted to attack which means you will need to monitor your .
Combat is more exciting and rewarding when you need to skirt your enemy and look for that opening to deliver your strike or deliver a flurry of attacks and retreat to allow your stamina. Maybe you want to blend melee attacks and spells to avoid depleting your combat resources.

For the time being all weapons consume the same amount of stamina. We will extend this to prevent dashing and other activities when I get the animation right.

Combat Statistics UI

Health, Mana, Stamina, Blood and Soul Count was previously arranged around a skull image. Our pre-alpha testers reported these statistics were too spread out to read in a glance during intense combat.

After some experimentation I re-arranged the combat resources into clear bars stacked on top of each other. Health is the most important stat so I promoted it to a large orb aligned directly next to the Stamina, Mana and Blood.
The player's Soul count is inside the health orb to save space.
Now player's get that At-A-Glance benefit from a cluster of UI in one corner.

I really wanted to keep a similar skull sprite in the HUD, but it took up too much space and did not convey any real information to the player. It may make a return when we get a UX designer to redesign the UI.

Lord Of Decay Combat Resources

More Blood

Many of our testers are sick little puppies. One of the most requested features is more blood in combat. For everybody. All the time.

It turns out we are also "sick little puppies" so we were happy to oblige with bigger and more spectacular blood splashes that spatter walls and pool on the ground.

Lord Of Decay Blood Spray


Players have reported that respawning at the start of the level is a little demoralising after trudging halfway across the map so we introduced Shrines as checkpoints.

Simply walk up to any shrine to receive Tyrus' blessing and should you die you will respawn at the shrine instead of all the way back at the start.

Lord Of Decay Shrine

Shout out to our friends

We recently met XeRiCZ who is the one-man army behind the ambitious project The Grail. The Grail is a Fantasy Hack 'n' Slash that allows you to play as a knight, paladin, ranger or wizard and support first person and third person perspective.

Already this game is sporting big features like player equipment, magically imbued items, siege engines, destructible environment and more.

Check you the latest update here.

That wraps up another dev diary. Tell us what you think of the new UI and what you think of Stamina. Is it better to hack 'n slash without impediment or do you like the idea of managing Stamina.

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You can get involved in the discussion on the Forum.

Watch the latest dev videos and technology demos on YouTube

Thanks for the support
Sandbox D7 Team

Sandbox D7
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necron15 - - 165 comments

Nice Update. Out of curiosity have you thought of using a little like soul wisp over a corpse instead of skeletonizing them? Always looking forward to new information.

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damianturnbull AuthorSubscriber
damianturnbull - - 126 comments

I am "skeletonizing" them at the moment as I have had some technical difficulties interacting with the character models after they die.

I'll eventually get around to fixing this, but for now this works.

The wisp is a good idea for locating corpses at a distance in a busy environment.

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