It's been awhile since my last update, I've simply had my hands full both with the development of LBKR aswell as in life in general so posting any updates has been less prioritized, least to say.
I'm closing in on releasing v184.108.40.206, and my intentions of the release is to release an early access build, so I felt it could be a good thing to show some signs of life.
Along with the release of v4200 comes a couple of new features to the game aswell as many updates and improvements to features implemented earlier.
- New Features -
As the player unlocks an achievment by some action in-game, they are rewarded with bonus reputation, experience and ability points.
Earlier item's could be enhanced by gems collected by the player, that approach has been scrapped completely and replaced by item modifiers. Less common items may generate item modifier slots that can be unlocked by the player if he/she spend crafting materials.
The modifiers range from basic statistic buffers to more specific bonuses like reflecting taken damage back onto attackers, health steal and alot more.
This also required some new items to be added, namely crafting materials. They've been implemented as a type of currency and will drop from monsters and loot much like the Shard/Cash currencies.
There's a total of five collectable materials, one for each item rarity ranking, and their likelihood of beein dropped is controlled by the material's ranking. The most rare crafting material can only be dropped by Masters, bosses and rare loot objects.
Most player abilities now have 2 - 4 elemental enhancements available to unlock.
The enhancements are unlocked by increasing the tier of the ability with ability points. Each enhancement will modify the ability's damage to be dealing either Fire, shock, frost or toxic damage, and may also greatly change the way the ability functions. As an example, an ability that by default would stun enemies and deal a small amount of damage can by re-enhancing it instead steal health from the targetted enemy and give the health to the player.
A new rare monster called the "Void Guardian" has been added and may occasionally roam the game levels, when defeated the guardian drop keys that allow access to "Void worlds".
These special worlds usually contain a single mission or challenge and take place outside the IGCC station. There are far more monsters in these game levels than what is in the regular levels, also all monsters adjust their stats and skill levels to match the player's, unlike the regular levels in which the monster levels are locked within a specified range defined by what chapter the player's currently playing in.
- Changes / Improvements-
A new damage tracker has been added that will allow the player to slow down movement and actions made by any affected monsters while using a weapon or ability with slow-related attacks.
Overall, alot of bugs have been fixed in the AI behaviours, but a new feature for the AI is their ability to run for backup if cornered or notify nearby AI about the player's prescense if the nearby AI is unaware of what's going on.
I've made some attempts to add flocking behaviour to the AI, at the time the flocking works but it still need alot of adjustments and improvements to be done, unfortunately I don't think I'll be able to sort it all out before the 4200 release but it's high up on my priority list.
Also a bug from earlier with the AI getting stuck in eachother if multiple AI try to get through a narrow passage or doorway but running in opposite directions. This is also something that I've planned to fix but it will be at a later time, mainly since I haven't encountered it too often while playing myself. I'm considering adding an AI ranking/penalty though for moving AI that will decide which AI should be able to forcefully move a colliding AI from the current path.
Each time a new profile ( character ) is created the profile will be set to Easy mode by default.
To unlock more difficult game modes the player must complete the storyline in the previous mode, this is to keep the game somewhat balanced, since more difficult game modes made the game impossible in early stages.
Earlier when a music track began playing, the ambience of the currently loaded game level would be stopped, since both the ambience and music played on the same Audio source. The music player now use it's own audio source and can be played alongside the game worlds ambience.
To the release of 4200 there will also be options to allow the player to increase or decrease the volume of the audio mixers of the game (Sound FX, Music and Master volumes) aswell as the option to constantly play music tracks. (By default the music tracks are only played during "action events", such as boss fights or puzzles.
Alot of UI elements has received minor updates, but the inventory and journal windows have received a complete makeover.
In the inventory the player can now view more detailed information of the selected item than earlier, also each attached item modifier can be seen aswell as information of the amount of crafting materials required to unlock the modifier.
Also the player character is now visible in the window displaying the currently equiped gear, as seen in the screenshot below.
The journal window has been divided into three groups, mission reports - containing all post-mission logs that are automaticly added when the player completes a mission, logs - containing any logs, notes or com. signals that are collected from the game world, and beastiery that contain data samples collected from killed monsters.
Apart from that the journal window is now a whole lot larger aswell, and the entry list is visible next to the content column.
A full update log and a downloadable game build will be posted next, by the time of the release! :)