My aim now is to complete a rough version of the entire game, setting up the rooms, cutscenes and interactions and slowly upgrade it to final assets. I find myself wanting to make the game in a linear fashion, so that it looks somewhat presentable but I really need to get all the foundations down so I know the structure of the game and the full story.
I am currently working on blocking out all the rooms and sketched the cutscenes I want for the first transition from Chasm city to the surface. I’ve set up rooms in Game Maker that mimic cutscene frames (the easiest way I could think of to manage it), and with the fade to black between frames it looks quite decent.
I sketched out the basic features of the next few backgrounds to get working.
I worked on some of the main backgrounds as a break from coding (also because I couldn’t help myself and wanted it to look somewhat atmospheric). They aren’t quite finished as I need to add more details and objects to interact with but the general look is there. The colours I’m using are slightly unnatural and quite saturated to add the slightly strange and hostile atmosphere. I want it to look a little radioactive and hazardous.
The first image is the player’s first look at the surface so I wanted it to seem quite pleasant and get progressively more hostile looking and dangerous.
The second image is when the world gets a little stormier and more angry before the sandstorm hits (which will be shown in cutscenes). I emphasised the purple, bruise-like colour and the landscape gets spiker to look more aggressive.
The third image is after the sandstorm, in the morning. The previous landscape is transformed and the landmarks (when there are some) will be gone. The player enters the cave which will be established as a new settlement.
The last image is past the new hub-cave, down the rock formation towards a lake or perhaps a sea as you can’t see the other shore, only the heaps of partially decomposed plastic. The plastic has turned the water toxic and given it the trademark rainbow colours of petrol-spill. I received some feedback from my brother about how the plastic mounds look like more land and perhaps to add brighter colours to make it more obvious. I was aiming for it to look like the colour had leaked out over the years but it should look more obvious, so I will work on that.
I have added new instances for the NPCs in the new areas, with new dialogue lines which will hopefully reveal more about their character. Once reaching the hub-cave, they will stay there and will have new things to say after Digby explores more areas of the world.
Here is a link to a video of how the current build is looking. If you want to have a go at it then I have uploaded it to itch.io too – here