Update day has arrived and it’s a big one! I’m going to do something a little different with the notes this time around. Instead of a jumbled preamble describing everything that has changed, I’m going to add notes on each line item where warranted.
With this patch, there is one bit of bad news. Unfortunately, my primary tester got pulled away from the project and will be gone until about June. I did my best to find any bugs while I was testing, but there is only so much one person can do when it comes to robust bug testing. Apologies in advance if there are any problems. They will be resolved as soon as possible either by a hotfix or through the next major update, which is currently looking like will be at the end of June.
Alright, let’s get into it.
The Battle room is now accessible! Finally, for the first time ever, the Mythlink battle system is publicly available. All players are equipped with a default loadout for the Mythlink “Dino” and can try out the battle system against a stationary, unkillable dummy along with one stage over two variations. Each mythlink is equipped with 6 different abilities to give a brief showcase on what you can expect. Please refer to the individual SteamVR control scheme to see what ability is mapped to which button. Some basic mechanics are explained here:
Mythlink Movement: The arc shooting out from your fingertip shows where your mythlink will be moved to when the corresponding “Confirm movement” button is pressed.
Lock On: Toggle On/Off. When toggled on, changes Mythlink movement so that your Mythlink always faces the opponent. This has several repercussions on movement that you’ll want to understand for future battles.
Ability 1: Axe Swing- Press the button to initiate a melee attack that can only hit once.
Ability 2: Fire Breath- Hold down the button to perform a breath attack. The longer you hold the button, the longer the cooldown will be (to a maximum).
Ability 3: Sprint- Hold down the button to move more quickly. The longer you hold the button, the longer the cooldown will be (to a maximum).
Ability 4: Energy Cannon- Press the button to charge up and a fire a high-damage ranged attack.
Ability 5: Front Guard- Blocks any incoming attacks that would hit you from the front.
Movement Ability: Jump- Press to make your Mythlink jump.
More details about battle mechanics will be discussed as time goes on. For now, just experiment and play around with the kit.
Training Room Game Changes
The training room has undergone a makeover to help spice up locale a little bit, especially compared to the Dorm room.
Games renamed. Per last month’s blog post. The following games have been renamed:
Puzzle is now “Pile-Up”
Bag is now “Bag Slugger”
Board is now “Engine Buster”
A new score effect has been added. The last “bonus score” effect, such as when you cleared a layer of blocks in Pile-Up, was a bit cheesy. It has been replaced with a better effect.
Changed how Score/Multiplier’s are displayed to help clear confusion. Now the format follows this example- “10 x 2.0” would mean you gained 20 points. Previously, this would’ve been displayed like this “20 x 2.0”, which meant you received 20 points because of your 2.0 multiplier.
Menu placement adjustment has been changed. Previously, moving a game up/down and menus up/down to accommodate each player’s individual height was tied to the same button. This led to some awkward situations where things would be much higher than desired. Now, menu placements are controlled via a handle on each menu. Players can grab the handle and manually move the menu’s up and down as they would like. Adjusting the game’s vertically has not changed, and is still tied to the button.
Pile-Up now uses modern “Tetris” piece spawning rules. For those who do not know, Modern Tetris does not use random piece spawns and has not for a long time. Instead, an entire “set” of pieces is spawned before moving onto the next set. It makes the game far easier and more accessible, while avoiding some difficult strings of random-ness. Pile-Up follows this trend. No more getting 10 “A” pieces in a row!
Pile-Up has been rewritten almost from scratch. Pile-Up was not only the first part of Mythlink written, but basically the first thing I ever wrote using the current game engine. As one can imagine, this means there are several things I have learned over the years to help improve it. With the renames I decided now was the time to do so. The game should now scale magnitudes better (12×12 board size is still just as insane, but at least it’s doesn’t perform as poorly) and will hopefully facilitate things such as a release on weaker VR systems like the Oculus Quest. Coincidentally, this should also have solved several bugs that existed within Pile Up, while hopefully not reintroducing several more!
Put the bag on a diet and slimmed it up a bit to help with players who don’t have much space. About a 10% size reduction.
The dorm room has had some effects added.
General Game Changes
Valve Index and Oculus Touch controller support has been added! HUUUUUGE disclaimer here…none of the controls for those two platforms has been tested, so I apologize if there are any issues. I know I said I wasn’t going to do this, but when I was creating the new inputs for this patch, I noticed that SteamVR has made it significantly easier to create controls for other platforms. To this end, I decided to say screw it, fortune favors the bold! Hope it works.
Lighting has been reworked across the entire game. Things should look a little nicer now.
Saving has been updated for several reasons, not the least of which to help streamline development. Unfortunately, this means all existing data will be lost. Sorry about that, hopefully this is the only time that happens.
The “sticky hands” bug in Pile Up should now be resolved (finally!)
There was a problem with particle effects in odd board sizes in Pile Up that has been fixed.
Pile-Up performance should not as severally drop anymore when dealing with larger board sizes.
Along with the score/multiplier display update, there were some bugs where scores weren’t being calculated correctly. This has been fixed.
And there you have it! Skipping a March patch was totally worth it right? I’m excited for the battle system to finally be available to the public, albeit in only it’s adolescent form right now. There will still be a blog update in May, but as mentioned before, don’t expect a game update until June. That patch will introduce the “Punch Junction” strength game and if I’m lucky…some peer to peer networking battles! Until then, have fun!