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Laundry Effects

Another Edit: (October 1, 2011) I derped below on what combat awards do. Currently hit combos and streaks don't offer anything, but chains still give an award. DT1 would cause enemies to drop more money with higher chains. In DT3, they cause the drop rate of anything to boost. Currently the boost is (chain*0.75)% for the drop chance, and will take effect when you have a chain of 2 or higher.

Edit: (October 1, 2011) Wow, it's October already. Time is flying! Just updating with a bit about how hit combos, killing chains, and killing sprees work in DT3... The same. Except, as of this moment, they don't offer any gameplay bonuses. The voices are gone and the screen alerts are minimal, which can still be turned off. They are more, at this time, for the player to use for themselves. There's still records kept about highest on these. Killing sprees have been renamed to 'Streaks'. Here's a screenshot with their on-screen display at this time.

Yes, that is Comic Sans, piss off, it's a nice font. :P

Edit: (September 30, 2011) September just barely took the lead for second most blog views in one month. Still no contender for first though. December 2010 made quite a jump in views. :P

I'm in the middle of laundry, hence the post title.

Gate 2 is finished, and one tester has it at the moment, to find all my mistakes and derps. Going to be adding more effects before I start work on chapter 5, as well as some maintenance and touch ups to things.

If you look at the side, you'll notice that I've added a dropbox download link for both games. I should've done that months ago. No ads, no wait times. I'm big on the 'no ads' part of that. The other download locations have been left intact in case that is your preferred method or you're unable to download from dropbox.

Next Chapter
Chapter 5 is the first non-gate chapter with a decent amount of content (more than 10 minutes worth) and where the story elements pick up even more. If you don't care for the story or dialogue, DT3 has the cut-scene skip feature that DT2 did. 99% of the cut-scenes are skippable. (That's a word because I said so, piss off spell-check.) There are only a small handful of extremely short sequences that can't be skipped.

Just a small post.


Desktop Travesties

Edit: (September 27, 2011) While this won't really change anything, DT3 can run up to 70 fps. Huge improvement over DT1, which only managed to reach 50. As I said way back, DT3 will remain running at 30, though this does mean that I don't foresee lag ever being an issue. This 70 was reached on a busy map with a moderate amount of effects and particles. On the particles note, DT3 will not be using GM's particle system at all. Most of the effects weren't using them anyway and I have more control doing particle effects my own way. Anyway, yeah, I can go nuts on visuals without any worry on frame rate it seems. The sprite rendering speed boost in GM8.1 combined with all the work to optimize the balls out of the DT engine seems to be a nice mix.

So I saw this weird Desktop Ponies thing. I knew right away what it was and ignored it. Weeks later, I was linked to it... again. So I thought, I wonder what coding and level building in DT would be like if I had a few ponies running around. And how long could I stand it before I go crazy. It went fine at first, I only had 3 various ponies running about, doing their thing on my computer. And then... it started, the thing I knew would happen. Without fail, 1 or 2 of these ponies would always come check out what I'm doing... ALWAYS. I'm trying to do something in the map editor, BAM, they're curious! I'm trying to code, BAM, so are they! They always found it humorous to go right where I'm working!

This is the usual trolling they like to do.

I figured, hey, I'll just have 1 running about, but that just hurt my conscience. The pony was so lonely on the screen. They seem to leave me alone when they're alone... sad and alone in their corner with no friends. I had to give them a friend. BIG mistake, they get mischievous around others. Friendship is getting in my damn way! They had to go...

Oh, Another LP
I found another LP of the game of someone going through it on Distorted. I don't know how much of it he's going to actually do, but we'll see. It's all in German, which I can't read. Though after viewing his channel and translating a few things, it seems this guy almost always does LPs of games on their hardest setting. He also seems to approach DT the same way people do with IWBTG, in that he doesn't cut any footage, at least from what I've seen. Every attempt and every death are shown. He's also voice translating the dialogue as he goes, which is nifty. Another thing to note is he has a second commentator. Hmm, I like the idea of a second person voice commenting. Oh if only I could understand German. :P

Fun fact: I lived in Germany way way way back in my single digit age years. My parents were stationed at Ramstein Air Force Base.

Anyway, you can check it out here.
LudorExperiens Youtube Channel

I do believe production speed will pick up now. Normally I'd have been able to finish Gate 2 like... at the beginning of the month, but it's been so busy. Gate 2 should be done by this Tuesday, not that it matters for you guys yet. :P  It does get my testers excited. A few have already made a run through about 3/4 of Gate 2. I was nice on enemy design and kept the nasty ones out of Gate 2. We'll leave that for Claire in Gate 3. She gets the bad end of the stick in everything... no really, she does. I don't mean to do it, it just happens that way. It's some subconscious scorn for women I think. Since I'm terrible with women, I just make games instead... hmm...

Remember, when Gate 3 is done and the game has been better tested, I'll be releasing a demo of that content. That's still a ways to go though. My testers are always bouncing ideas to me, things they like, dislike, and are concerned about. Sometime I'm gonna have to discuss with them about how some of the little nuances should work. Once they've been able to see how the mainland gameplay works, we'll have an easier time deciding what's best.


Two More Days

Till Season 2 of what you really don't care about is aired... aside from those of you that do. I think that covers just about everyone right?

Gate 2 (well about 80% of it) was given to Slaix and a new tester, Amatsu. After a few save file compatibility shenanegans, lots of little bugs and mishaps were found. It was a fun evening of throwing newer versions at them every time they found something game breaking. I blame them for saying "Give it to us now!"... or something.

It's looking to be good though. They didn't have any major complaints, despite its incompleteness. (Hey, spell checker says that's a word.) I don't count, "WHY DOES THIS ROOM EXIST?!?!" as complaints. Those are always good signs. They'll have the completed version of Gate 2 hopefully sometime next week. Anyway, I'm sure I had more to post with this one, but I seem to have misplaced my notes... which is unlike me!!

My OCD has been driving me up the wall these last 2 weeks. I can usually keep it under control, but my fixations have been overpowering my psyche as of late. I've been working on an outlet for it, so hopefully that helps. Anyway, take care everyone. Oh... I just had to tell my stomach to STFU, so it's probably a good time to act on that.


Water You Doing

Edit: (September 13, 2011) I have switched over to GM8.1 now. Everything has been fixed up and it works great. I like all that's been done to it. AND, faster sprite rendering, not that lag has been much of an issue since completing Black Rock on DT1.

That joke sucks and has always sucked. Anyone who uses it sucks too...

So anyway, here's a few things that will be appearing to DT3 to add to your death count. You're all going to love this one.

Oh yeah, DT3 has water. *Everyone screams* There won't be swimming, it's going to take on the standard 2D platformer approach. It works much like Super Metroid, except it doesn't slow you down THAT much. Your movement underwater is limited though, and your dashes are useless for any momentum boosts. The air dash gives you some decent momentum, but your ground dash is almost literally a dash in place. It doesn't negate the invincibility frames. When you're underwater, you can drown. The moment you submerge, a breath meter will be displayed and of course depletes. Bringing your head above water does the intended effect of returning air to you. That leads me to a few small nuances. If you're running or ducking, your head is underwater, which means it will take away air. :P As for when water will start to take effect on your movement, it needs to be roughly 13 pixels up from Jerry's feet. My roommate, Jerry no doubt, says he wants me to put in splashes if you're running through water. (A different effect when it's at your feet, but not affecting your mobility.) Not sure if I'm going into THAT much detail, but we'll see. :3 Aesthetics like that can wait for now as it doesn't add anything to gameplay. (Derp, I add stuff like that all the time, I really can use that argument.)

Oh no, water levels.

Water can also change height. In fact, there is an entire dungeon based around changing water levels to get around. Water affects more than just you. Platforms will float and have a bit of buoyancy, your bombs will fizzle out. Some enemies need water, so if you empty the room, they just flop about like fish on... ugh nevermind. Others can skid along the top of water. There's a few other deally bobs going on with water that you're just gonna have to find out on your own when the time comes.

Gate 2 is getting closer and closer for my testers to try their hooves, err hands at it. Looking forward to that feedback and all the crazy bugs they're going to send me.

More Info Supplied To You

The new values on the right side display an ability's stun power. This is more meta gaming stuff for people. When scanning an enemy, you can now see their stun resist. It's very simple math for this.
BaseAbilityStun - EnemyStunResist = Frames the enemy is stunned
(Those are not the variable names.)
There's a few other small things factored into it like skills and equipment. This new way of handling enemy flinch times helps balance out your close and ranged abilities. The X-Buster only has a stun power of 1. Many of the enemies, specifically robots have a stun resist of 1-3, which will completely nullify stun. Even without using various equipment combinations, I've seen some nifty stun lock methods.

DT1&2 handled stun in a different way. It was based on the percentage of damage you dealt to the enemy's max HP, which really doesn't work all that well in retrospect. Not with the numbers I used anyway. These two games also reset the stun counter on every hit. In DT3, it is continually added on, making it even more possible to stun lock.

But again, the rest is really up to how you want to play, this stun info is ultimately useless outside of meta gaming. I'd rather have stun time be somewhat transparent/ignored like it was in DT1&2. It's simply part of the flow of the game. I provide this info ingame for everyone because of feedback that I've gotten from DT1&2. A lot of people wanted to see these kinds of things and here it is.

Game Maker 8.0 to 8.1
I am still using version 8.0. I have 8.1, but remember way way back when I said it was having problems? Well it seems all this has been fixed according to the internet. I'll be getting my 8.1 copy updated to the most recent version and testing all that. If I see that everything is in order, I'll start DT3 development in 8.1, which will speed things up. Last time I tried 8.1, it flipped out at all my extensions as well as the fonts and a few other small things. o_O


A New Month, A New... whatever

Edit: (Same Day) A review of the game was posted here just today. I was asked a few interview questions to go alongside the review found here.

His review style reminds me of something, I can't remember what it was, so... Instead of explaining his review style, just go see, I usually do a terrible job of explaining anyway. Like they say, a picture is worth a thousand words, what would that make videos? o_O Anyway, here's a link to his review site as well.

I noticed that last month, (August) the blog got the second highest view count in its life time. It's been going up ever since April this year, which is right when DT3 was officially announced. No surprise there. March actually got the second lowest since creation and then BAM it spiked back up. The highest month was December last year, right after DT1 was released. Actually it was released early November and the view count nearly doubled... oh well. April and May this year got the exact same view count with June only 2 views higher. o_O That's... special. If you know blogger well enough I'm sure some of you can figure out how to view this stuff yourself, but I won't be saying the actual view count. :P It's really not that high, though admittedly higher than I thought considering I really don't advertise this game anywhere.

Anyway, enough with boring logistics. DT3 will make gameplay throw-backs and references to both previous games. I found one usable reference perfect for a certain desert road in Gate 2. You know what I'm talking about most likely. :3 Except this time, retribution is possible. Hard, but possible. I'm sure many of you want it after that part.

Zelda 2 Exploit
If you remember back to Zelda 2, you could get into encounters on the map right on an event spot. This would cause you to spawn back in on it, which would allow you to skip over it. When I was doing a no continue run of the game, (and was successful) I exploited that little trick in various parts. (Mainly the road to the Great Temple) Anyway, this trick was going to be available for DT3's Gate 2, and it was originally coded that way. I decided to change that, it's not longer an exploit. In the event of you going over an event spot and an encounter at the same time, the event takes priority.

A few reasons for this. I really don't want you guys 'cheating' over these things. The event maps are designed for specific reasons. Throw-backs, to teach the player about a certain game mechanic through visual cues. (And to build the death counter of course. It's a sign of how manly you are.) The biggest reason are the hidden maps. They're pretty easy and usually obvious to find, but on that rare occasion for the two that I don't think are as obvious, I don't want the player running over it and getting into an encounter, then thinking nothing of it, and not double checking. (I'm glad there's no grammar or run-on sentence checker/auto-correct.) (wtf 'autocorrect' is too a word!!) That and I really don't want the exploit in there, that's really the bottom line. :P

More Exploits, but not really
I doesn't mean I won't be leaving in small non-game breaking exploits, they'll be there for fun for you guys to find. There is one actual game breaking exploit that I purposefully left in the game. The exploit came about through a design oversight with how one of the levels were built. I found it funnier to just leave it in and have a comment about cheating. (Of course the game fixes up the problems caused after you do so.) I'm going to try and put in little easter eggs like this whenever I can. Normally I'd go eww at the idea of breaking immersion but... well yeah...