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Animal Friends Adventure Update: New Ways to Die

Pretty morbid headline for a game of all ages. But I’m extremely excited and this is super early in the morning before coffee, so forgive the mental dump. We have been working hard post release to make this game even better! There is a massive upgrade coming along and it’s almost complete. As a micro indie game studio of mostly one person, things move slow but we git er done. Small Company with Big Dreams and all that…

What’s in the Box?

Lots of stuff! New AI! New graphics, new high res textures, realistic trees, grass… It’s like a new game! Sadly this is how it should have been released, but note, we’re one person for now. I liked the game enough to release it, but thought it was not good enough, so I buckled down and got to work.

Beating Crystal Guardian with Shovel
It’s so satisfying to beat this guy with a shovel.

The Enemy AI was ported from Super Panda Adventures and was something I wrote from scratch. It’s extremely versatile and has a tone of features that will breath new life into the game world. The AI covered shooting enemies and that functionality has been expanded even further for Melee combat. But I didn’t just stop there. The player too was expanded on for melee combat. This opens so many doors now.

The Opened Doors

With the addition of the new combat system and AI some game mechanics also had to change. Melee monsters won’t give bump damage. Only weapon damage. So there is a mix of traditional platformer with the head bops and “bump damage”. Then there is the melee and ranged combat system. We’ll tweak and tune this according to player feedback though. In the near future we may add in two more Tutorial levels to cover these changes.

Treasure Goblin
Once done, The Treasure Goblin will be rewarding, but he’s extra stabby.

With the addition of combat comes a first pass at the loot system. Diamonds and fruits (feeding pets) is hard to come by. So I’ll be doing a pass over the loot system to focus on being more rewarding. While I absolutely love watching the treasure goblin and loot bags explode with coins, there needs to be more. We’re doing just that.

But wait! There’s More!

Aside from the amazing AI and initial loot system tweaks, a complete graphical overhaul underway. Dropping in Speedtree models, new enemies, new scenery and so much more. Wherever possible new textures are being dropped in. Water and lava has been swapped out to be far more realistic. Waterfalls even have sound!

Textures have been greatly increased in resolution and as a bonus, wherever possible “normal” maps have been added. This gives a 3D POP to the environment and brings the world to life. We’ve even dropped in new lighting volumetric systems to enhance the caves, forest and other spooky places.

No more billboarding. Animal Friends Adventure IS NOT a mobile game and shouldn’t look like one! So fake scenery and billboarding props have been replaced with the real thing. Thankfully Speedtree has many LOD (Levels of Detail) so you get a really pretty game without the performance hit. How cool is that?

What’s Next?

With Animal Friends Adventure’s acceptance and completed signing to be publish by Microsoft’s ID@XBOX program… A lot really. Having the backing of a massive publisher will give the resources to really make this game even greater.

With the new Melee system we’re opening a store! In game store that is. NO MICROTRANSACTIONS. We’re old school, you buy the game once. So we’ll let you buy new, exciting weapons with currency earned in the game.

The pet system sucks in it’s current state. I may turn it off to avoid confusing the playerbase. I want to give it a complete overhaul but … 1 person studio (smiley).

Spawn system. Monsters are being lined up and put into categories, Forest, Lava, Scary, Cave, Water and so on… They don’t like the sorting system but this allows a creative spawner. Instead of predictable monsters in every location, they’ll all be replaced with a spawner that is set to that level type. So it may pop a series of Evil Mushrooms, or ax wielding foes.

Thank you

A huge thanks to you, the gamers.

A huge thanks to Vanaheim Studios for partnering with us, sharing our posts and lending your art team and keeping my project on track! And David Gould of Digital Gamez (no website yet) for taking us under your wing and being our lighthouse in the darkness of Indie Game development. Without you, I’d being slaving to corporate overlords and having my soul siphoned away.

About Craig

Craig is the founder of The Chaos Rift and developer of the games published here. In his spare time he'll also write about games, play games and dream about games. Being a Game developer has been a dream of Craig's since he was 14 and after some detours has finally started to realize his dreams.

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