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Gun and souls

I already had a list of things added to my asana tasks. I have a cross-dot already to help with targeting the embers (Medievil also had a cursor of sorts, so maybe it’s ok), what else can I do with the cross-hair-dot.

A pistol was in the list, but that also shoots one bullet at a time – according to the time period I have in my mind for this – so that’s basically the same, but less magic…

How about a shotgun? That’s better, but I still want to be able to hold the axe and possible throw it around at the same time.

What about a magic pistol then, that sort of fires like a shotgun and is powered by the same ember magic (which is blue, even though it is fire based(annoying) and shoots with a spread – because the ember breaks apart of course – let’s bring in a pistol I bought for a game with pirates I was making and see how it goes:

Fireball test

So now I have some graphics for the bars and everyone pauses when I press ‘Start’, what else can I do with magic?

In comes the myth of O’Lantern: Satan promises to never take his soul, yes, but O’Lantern ends up in the dark and alone, he tells Satan: you’re just going to leave me here in the dark?

And Satan tosses him an ever burning piece of ember from the flames of Hades (Greek Hell) that would never burn out. Hmmm that sounds like a fireball of sorts, maybe he chucks it, so I tried it out:

Adding more gameplay

I started thinking about ways to play more with the ragdolls, since this has been a theme with prototypes I made in the past, maybe I could actually make something more this time.

I already had the slide implemented – the idea initially was to throw your head as a bowling ball, but I figured 1) it will be a returning ball instead of a returning axe, that’s not variety and 2) sliding was fun.

Bowling Ball Jack was born:

This was really easy to implement, the only tricky thing was making sure the character didn’t snag on the ragdolls while performing the action, but being able to walk over them once it has been performed. In Unity this was just a matter of switching a Physics layer interaction bool on/off, which is controlled by animation events, just like the collider that pushes them out of the way.

Now this is fun of course, but you can basically spam it and take out a horde of zombies no sweat, I destroyed my game.

What to do, what to do…

Let’s add a stamina bar, so you have to switch up, right? And why would you not spam the axe instead? Well because that works with magic, duh… So I decided to try out what has basically become the classic: Health Stamina Mana trio of health bars.

Ragdolls receive force from the axe

Of course someone said that’s neat and that it would be better if the ragdolls received force, which is something I had automatically from the functionality of the axe, but was too much, sending the dolls to high heavens – which was funny, but broke the models too much.

So I found some time and implemented a more controllable impact force that seems to work like a charm:

First version of axe throw

So this is Jack McLantern – my take on the Jack o’ lantern myth – what happened after the guy who convinced Satan not to take his soul… well it’s not as dire as it sounds. Apparently Death now needs his – your – help – and since you are stuck in purgatory he brings you to the mortal plane to help him clean up some shenanigans and maybe he can help you find your way as well.

Drawing from Tim Burton which is not obvious at the moment, but will be when I start implementing more final graphics and inspired by Medievil and the adventures of Sir Daniel Fortesque (which was also inspired by Tim Burton), I wanted to make a 3rd person cartoony action platformer instead of the usual realistic/dark/grim stuff I usually aim to make.

After playing some Medievil I noticed that it has a lot in common with God of War: let’s fight enemies, find chests and kill bosses.

This God of War parallel gave me the idea for the weapons McLantern would use: an axe. So the idea started fleshing out and a coding thingy wanted to be made, getting a Kratos like axe in Unity.