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Post news RSS Devlog #3 | The Underside Visual update and Enemy AI

Devlog #3 of The Underside, a rogue-lite hack & slash with 4-players co-op, where you build your own dungeon and change the outcome of each playthrough in this imaginative game based on children's monsters that live under their beds. Hub rework and music concepts.

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Welcome to Devlog #3

Glad to see you here :)

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Introduction

In this devlog, we will be going over the several visual changes that we have made in the last week to give an update to the last devlog’s work. Moreover, the AI of the game has taken a huge step to what we pretend to do in the end, taking a more data-oriented approach.

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Visual Changes

The hub

Until now, art has been in every devlog and we intend to keep it that way! Constantly adding new stuff and keeping things interesting here in The Underside.

Last time, we showed a Blockout of the new main area of the game, the Hub. And now we want to show further progress! We finished the Upgrades area and the Contracts area, and are already implemented in the game. For the Upgrades area, that's where the father of the protagonist will stand and upgrade our stuff, so it is his little workshop, we use two giant gears to grab the attention of the player to explore that area

GrindingGears


For the contracts, we made the screen really pop out (quite literally) and be one of the main items in the whole hub, plus the background screen movement keeps it fresh so that going there doesn't become a boring repetitive task, alongside the screen there is a mini server-level used to communicate with the web, and right beside it, there is the “Powerplant” that gathers energy from the Dreamscapes so that the weapons can be kept charged up and keep studying the secrets of this weird power source.

ContractsZone


Melee Enemy (continuation)

This guy was not supposed to be too worked on this week due to time constraints, but we decided not to finish the entire hub now and skip the armoury and ground to continue working on this enemy type. Last time we showed you the high poly versions of it and now we bring you all the textured and rigged low poly versions! We made a huge jump and turned out exactly the way we wanted it to, we even got to implement all the variations of it. With little time left due to a deadline, we were still able to create some Blockout animations for it, a simple damaged animation with 1 frame, a walk with 3 frames and a hit with 3 frames.

MeleeEnemyRigging

Character RIG

MeleeEnemyFinalVariations

Some possible variations (total of 27 possible variations!)

EnemyWalk

EnemyHitEnemyAttack

With an enemy nearly complete, we can now have a clear view of how the others will look and how we should make them. After completing this one, the next up will either be the boss, a rework of the main character or the father. Stay tuned!

UI

The main UI in our game also got a full rework, this is just another step towards the final look as surely we will have other visual reworks in the future for this particular element!

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Enemy AI

Of course, a rogue-lite wouldn’t really be one without a variety of enemies with interesting dynamics for the player to really make use of the combat and movement mechanics and skillfully conquer dungeon runs.

Right now we have 4 main archetypes of enemies: melee, ranged, summoner and minion. We have constructed the A.I. as a data-driven modular system (which is still being improved upon), so we can create a great variety of enemies in an easier way. Of course, we have bosses as well to act as a true challenge, but that is a topic for another devlog, just know they have the same modularity as the rest of the enemies so you can expect some cool things in the near future!

The melee enemy is almost self-explanatory, they get close to the player and try to deal damage. Although this may seem like a simple behaviour we are working for the melee enemies to act more like bruisers and constrain player movement to give the other types of enemies the opportunity to act.

MeleeBehaviour

Current melee enemy


The ranged enemy, right now, works as a projectile shooter and is the first with a variant, giving us 2 different ranged enemies (yay)! The first variant is a sniper, shooting powerful “bullets” with a slow rate but tries to predict where the player is going, the second is a shotgun wielder shooting 3 volleys of 3 “bullets” in an arc. We want the ranged enemies to give the game a feel of a bullet-hell while not being too much so it doesn’t interfere with the dynamics with the other types of enemies. They also are a bit afraid of the player, so if they sense they are in danger they try to flee to safety!

RangedEnemyAttacks

Ranged enemy and variation


With the summoner, we wanted to create an enemy that does more than putting more enemies on the battlefield, although that was the first behaviour implemented. The summoner right now acts a bit like a nuisance to the player with the possibility of being a real threat. The summoner wanders around the dungeon room spawns around him a number of minions in fixed intervals, but we are working to have it spawn more interesting things than just enemies.

Last but not least, the minion enemy. This type is a bit more unique, it normally doesn’t spawn when an encounter begins, but is spawn through other enemies and their behaviour can be the most “strange”. The way it is working at the moment, they seek the player before winding up a bullet-like movement to deal damage to the player, but between attacks they try to maintain a healthy range from the player, keeping him/her on his/her toes.

Minions

The summoner spawning minions


And this is how they are looking like in our prototype dungeon rooms:

Dungeon

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Conclusion

Sorry for being a little late this week and thank you for waiting! Next week we’ll be posting on our regular day (Wednesday), finally, we hope you enjoyed this visual update of the game (we surely did) and would like to hear from you what are your thoughts on it. Tell us what you’d change or other feedback in the comments!

See you next week for another update on The Underside’s development.

You can follow our content and more of this game on our Twitter here: Twitter.com

And if you want to go one step further you can join our discord and interact directly with us: Discord.gg


The Tip Studios is composed by:

Sound Designer and Producer João Rebelo - Soundcloud

Designer and AI Programmer Miguel Fernández -Github profile

Programmer and Technical Artist Rodrigo Pinheiro - GithubPages

3D/2D Artist Tomás Franco - Artstation

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