ENTRY #3 - 04/01/2021 : Monsters from the Deep       

    
     After about a month I have gotten a little farther towards my vision. I have implemented placeholder sound effects, more animations, particles, and aerial movement. You can see the new features at work below, including a lighting concept, night vision, a firearm, and skiing (a concept where a character will not encounter any friction on the ground, seen in games such as Tribes.)

     It's clear the combat system is going to take me quite a while to perfect, so lets put that discussion on the back burner for now, as my goal hasn't changed since my last log entry. I'd like to reveal a bit more about my vision and what you see above.

     The very first decision made when I started this was when and where it would take place. On the Meyers Briggs chart I fall into the Explorer category. I love to play open world games such as Assassins Creed, Grand Theft Auto, No Mans Sky, all because they immerse me in a new place. I wanted to do something that wasn't done often, and explore it in a new way. I decided on the ocean floor. There are so many games that explore the unknowns of outer space, but so few that explore the unknowns of our big body of water. I knew from there it would have to be science fiction, and players would need a mode of transportation. Aquanox already explores underwater fighters/ships, what about mechs? I have never seen any mech battles take place underwater. That became my mode of transportation so to speak. Lastly, who would the player fight? Should the player fight?

https://gfycat.com/cleanunevenkouprey
Godzilla vs Kong by Legendary Pictures, 2021

     The answer was pretty obvious. I've personally not seen Pacific Rim (I know, I'm sorry) but I have seen at least 70% of the Godzilla films made. They're part of a genre of giant monster movies called "kaiju films". If you haven't seen any Godzilla flicks, the creature is a giant radioactive dinosaur-monster that emerges from the ocean to wreak havoc on Japan. Pacific Rim had the right idea- pit giant mechs against formidable foes: kaiju. However their battle takes place in familiar territory, our cities and homes. In my game, the tables are turned; it's the player who is invading kaiju home turf. Thus, the big threat in the game are kaiju, hence the working title.

     I've been experimenting in just how I want these combat interactions to go. To elaborate on what was stated last month, I want a mix of Street Fighter with a bit of Monster Hunter. The player will have their main weapon, which requires commits (attacks that render the player vulnerable and unable to move until the attack ends) and melee combat as their backup, which will be weak but fast and fluid. I don't want the player to hunt kaiju either. I want them to be more than they can handle; a threat to avoid and something to fight only to make an escape.

     To wrap this all up, I'm experimenting with how I want to treat the environment in the game. Because it's deep underwater there can't be a lot of light. There has to be fear of the unknown. I've given the player a light drone that can illuminate a small area but not much else. Night vision will help track foes once found, but should be too blurry to keep on all the time or it should cost thermal. The kaiju have to feel like predators and the mechs prey. The player has to be careful where they are going to reach their desitination safely. That destination is something I will cover down the road.

https://gfycat.com/consideratespiritedboar
Stranger Things by Netflix, 2016

 ENTRY #2 - 03/01/2021 : Character Control       

    
    I'm only about a week into this but I figure for the sake of consistency I will post updates the first of every month. What I have so far is some basic character movement and attacks. Keep in mind I am using placeholder assets grabbed from Mixamo.com.
My vision for combat in the kaiju game was to make it very arcade-like while retaining a bit of risk and strategy. In this game you will play as a robot with different abilities that cost "thermal" to perform. Attacking or boosting too much will raise your thermals to max and cause you to temporarily shutdown while you cool off. Thermals are always going down automatically, so the player has to choose when to fight, when to evade, and when to run.

     My combat system is inspired by a mix of fighting games and beat-em-ups like the Arkham series with a mix of Monster Hunter and Dark Souls. The player needs to feel like they are in control of not just a robot, but a fighting machine. Hits have to be fast, fluid, and streamlined for an action adventure- while challenging players to keep their thermals down. In the update video I have melee combat, sword combat, player movement, and boosting in it's initial state.

 ENTRY #1 - 02/21/2021 : Conception      


     After two years of game jams and quality assurance work, I still strive for the stars. I want to be a designer on a AAA development team. Many studios expect at least one shipped title to even apply. I have spent a long, long time thinking about what I wanted to make to show all of my development skills. I have thought up many original ideas, but most were too ambitious. Unfortunately, I can only think ambitiously. I finally came to a loose concept that, while huge, is still reasonable.

     Much like the creator of Stardew Valley, I want to make an entire game myself. I want to experience every facet of development and become a jack of all trades. My education and experience in art, design, and programming will surely be tested.

     I don't have anything to show at the moment, but I will let "The Kaiju Project" speak for itself and divulge more about it in time.

© 2020 Chris Schickler