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Progress Report #5: Merry Christmas! | Working on the enemies' AI

  • OldPat
  • 12/25/2017 08:15 PM
First of all, Merry Christmas to you all! Had your fill? I'm stuffed and depressed. xD


I had to stop working on the gameplay engine for a while, as I had to work on a teeny tiny 2D Platform game with some friends of mine. (Perhaps I'll translate it and upload it here one day, we'll see).

I've recently resumed working on Karma Flow 2. It's a shame that I'm still this far behind schedule with the release, as I wanted to release the game in time for Christmas. As you might've guessed from some of the screenshots or the presentation itself (even though I don't remember if it was actually implied or not, hmmm), Karma Flow 2's story takes place during Christmas so it would've fit nicely.

It could've been the kind of game to play on Christmas! Like, "Tonight I'll rewatch Die Hard and, why not, let's play some Karma Flow 2 as well, later". xD

Unfortunately no, I'm still working on the structure, so no way the game is going to release now. But I'll try my best to release it somewhere around 2018.

As I said in my previous blog, the gameplay structure is ready on paper, and there's a somewhat working prototype on VX Ace, but it still needs to fully get out of the conceptual phase. I'm creating everything using VX Ace's own programming language, RGSS3.

The basics are all there, as I said before. Enemies are slightly smarter, have their own pathfinding and can also hear the player, Flo can now jump wherever she wants and that helps the player gain a lot of freedom of movement (imperative for this game that aims to be an "Open-Stealth", as I like to call it) and things like that.

Debugging a bit. In this particular case, the enemy tried to call for help "but no one came...". The graphics here are all placeholders, of course.

I'm now trying to finish programming the enemies' main AI. The most difficult things to program is when they have to form search teams in order to investigate a certain area. Enemies can finally hear noises and tell them apart! For example, when they hear footsteps they simply turn around, looking for the source, just for a bit, before resuming their patrol. If they hear an explosion, though, things are handled way differently. They know someone dangerous could be lurking around, at that point. So they form a search team and scout the area where the explosion occured. All of the enemies that hear that specific type of sound get some kind of "ID" which basically tells to each one of them "you belong to team number X".

I'll need to come up with some sort of algorithm for when the enemies need to split up and search around that specific area. The idea is to make them investigate places where the player is more likely to be hiding, and split up to do so in order to not get in each others way.

It is proving to be kind of hard to make, but I'll manage somehow. If worse come to worst, I'll try something different. I hope I can make it work as soon as possible!

As soon as I have a fully working gameplay engine with all of the intended features, I'll create a mission for testing purposes and maybe show it to you through a gameplay video or something else.

I was also thinking about releasing a patch for the first game, Karma Flow - The Prototype. I wanted to change the 100% completion bonus in order to tease the sequel a bit with a little extra something and I was also thinking about implementing support for the Xbox360 Controller. I tried PepsiOtaku's plugin, that allows this, a bit and it worked like a charm, but I've never implemented it in KF1 yet. Fact is, I wanted to release it together with a few other fixes. We'll see about that.

See you soon and, again, have a happy Christmas!