Epsylon is a game project based on the good old detective stories but taking it a step forward mixing it with an unconventional cast and a new game engine technology. Detective stories are in general static narratives with limited set of interaction and little replay value once the story is done. The player has next to no influence on the way the story unfolds. Here the Epsylon project hooks in and expands the game mechanics to allow the player to conduct investigation his own way. How the player conducts the investigation influences the world and people around him. An AI in the background reacts to the moves of the player potentially altering the course of actions. Besides the basic detective moves the player has access to some "characters" providing some special abilities that can be of help.
You are Georgo Valentino, a private eye. On your way looking to solve one of your longest standing unresolved cases you end up with a hunch leading to the parallel world Alpha-10. In this universe multiple worlds exist next to each other. Very little people know about this though. One of your friends, a scientist, does know. and he most certainly knows more than that. He has a special "friend" himself that he met while researching what is called the "Xendron", the multidimensional space. Arriving at Alpha-10 Georgo is quite surprised finding his "friend" having dropped off his little girl at his side as he has "own business" to take care off. You should learn soon that this little girl (Sean) has some special abilities that can be of help to you. And if that is not enough the organisation you end up with has two special "agents" (Odjin and Bahatos) at their disposal that have their own set of abilities to bring to the table. The interesting part? The little girl and these two special agents are dragons of different kinds. As it looks like they play an important role in the case to unfold.
Will you be able to solve the biggest case you ever had?
All your actions have large influence on the events in the world. It is better to conduct your investigation without force if possible. As you are a stranger in this world people tend to not tell you all they know so you have to find your own ways to gather the informations you need to crack the case. There are multiple ways to solve the case depending on how you approach the investigation and with whom. Be careful though with whome you talk and what you do. The underworld is watching you and will react to your snooping around. Counter measures can range from making "vanish" information you seek all the way to trying to silence you or people you got in contact with. Various features can help you on your way:
One of the key points is that the story is part of the game mechanics. It is not told to the player by hitting NPCs. The story is the main case in the investigation. So to learn the story solve the investigation. Depending on how you solve it you can learn more or less about the story. It is therefore useful to look sometimes deeper than requested. And who knows what influence your choices have on the outcome... or members in your team.
Last time I talked about Generated Content. Now I'll expand on the previously shown concept of Environment Rooms. The attentive reader will remember what it is but for all others in short it means faking rooms behind building windows to not make them look flat.
Environment Rooms are a powerful feature but the required textures are not so simple to create. I've added Artist-Usable Scripts to easily generate proper Environment Rooms out of Live In-Game Content. The video below shows how this works.
The actual in-game used env-room textures compose of two generated env-rooms, one for color and the other for emissivity. You can also add Env-Room-Mask to add cutrains to the windows if you want.
The Drag[en]gine is advancing more and more. With the new Game Definition Editor the IGDE is nearing completion for the first release. Only one Editor missing now.
The Game Definition Editor is quite complex so I'm giving only a short overview in the video below. Basically this is the central Asset Catalogue of a game project for the use by Artists and Modders. This is not required for the final game but vital for fast and efficient development.
The Drag[en]gine has a special concept, the GLEM System. One of the benefits of this system is Full Platform Independency (no need to worry about Platform-Discrimination, it just runs), 100% Run Safety (no chance to run hidden malicious code by accident) and the freedom to play games Where You Want not where you are forced to. There are also many other advantages which I leave up for later reading to keep this short. Important here is now the DELGA files.
DELGA files are Platform Independent Game Distributions. To play a game you just need a DELGA. You can then play them on any platform(s) you own. This video is just a quick show-case on how this works. I skipped doing the video on other platforms (Linux, MacOS, Android) as it works the same.
Games are locked to one computer... O'Rly? Not with the Drag[en]gine Game Engine. Get Portable!
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