Post news RSS Despicaville's Development Direction

Someone on another website had asked me about the job system and future developments, so figured I would re-post my response here as it's fairly informative about the current state of Despicaville and my plans for it. Keep in mind this was a post regarding Alpha 3.7 and some things have already been integrated since then:

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"The job system is definitely still a work-in-progress for the player... it's safe to ignore it for now, but if you wanna make sure you're not 'late for work' then here's the current job initiators:

Diner Cashier: interact with the cash register at the Diner
Diner Chef: just be standing in the Diner when the job starts
Diner Waiter: same as the chef
Diner Manager: interact with the desk at the Diner

Police Patrol: no necessary location or activator
Police Desk: interact with any desk in the police station
Police Sheriff: same as Police Desk
Police Reception: interact with the cash register in the police station

There's nothing you can really do with the jobs at the moment, though, so like I said: safe to ignore for now. Eventually, the civilians will have to actually search their houses for food and stuff instead of just auto-refilling their hunger with the fridge... and when there's no food left in the house, there'll be a place to purchase food from (like a little grocery store), or they can attempt to steal the food or mug someone to get the money to buy food with. Alternatively, they'll have the option of going to the Diner to purchase food... and that's when the place (and the jobs) will get a bit more interesting, since the chef will actually have to do stuff to 'make the food' and the waiters will have to deliver the food to the right tables and take orders... and everyone will have to pay for the food at the cash register. By then, jobs will actually be providing an income as well to get a real economy going in the game. I'll definitely try to implement something to make it more clear about where/how a job is done.

Some other commercial buildings that are planned to be implemented: Butcher Shop, Sporting Goods (weapon store), Bank, Fire Station, Cemetery, Morgue/Crematorium, Clinic and a School. A few other park variations have also already been designed... just need to implement them.

- The Police Officer will eventually be able to arrest people with handcuffs and guide them back to their squad car to transport to one of the jail cells. The 'Attack' option will be replaced with 'Arrest', but you'll still get the option to attack when defending yourself. The overall concept for being a Police Officer is to try to figure out who's the serial killer and arrest them. When you're not playing as the serial killer, one of the NPCs takes up the role and will have a pattern that you'll have to piece together to figure out who they are and where they live. As the Police Officer, you'll also receive messages about reported crimes to investigate and/or make arrests. If you're clever enough, you'll piece together the clues and eventually catch up to the killer for a nice 'showdown'.
- The Civilian will go about their business and try to stay alive as the main target of the serial killer... but since the killer will also be after other characters, there's really no telling when he/she will strike. As an NPC, the serial killer will be majorly overpowered compared to the player... but not impossible to take down or to sneakily get them caught by the police. Granted, they'll be doing everything they can not to get caught. The overall concept for playing as a civilian is to feel like a character being stalked in a slasher movie. You use your wits to stay alive just long enough to get the upper-hand somehow.
- The Serial Killer is as you would expect it to be... you try to kill as many people as you can before you're caught or killed. Every time someone reports a crime you commit, they're also reporting a description of you (the closer they are, the more accurate the description) and where the crime took place... which the police will use to try and piece together who you are and where you live. There won't be any 'unfair' system running in the background where the police can magically know everything about you and just toy with you to create a bit of drama/suspense... they'll literally be investigating your crimes and hunting you down. The more mistakes you make (leaving behind evidence and witnesses), the closer the police will get to catching you and the greater the number of them that'll be showing up to every reported crime matching your description. The 'heat' will build until it's too hot to handle ;)

The AI for all the other civilians in the town will be pretty adaptive... so they'll be able to commit petty crimes out of desperation if they can't satisfy their needs with their job and available resources. It should be pretty rare, though, to be working at the cash register in the Diner and have some random NPC come in and start screaming "Give me all the money!" while pointing a gun at you... but hey, it'll be possible lol Which certainly makes for an interesting and dynamic little town. Probably the most difficult part, as a developer, will be trying to think of a way to keep things from falling apart too much/too soon lol It'll definitely be a balancing-act with some amusing craziness until things are running a bit more smoothly. I could always add in some various modes of play later down the road, too, for those that wanna be running around in a completely chaotic town lol

So yeah, hope that gives a better understanding of where the game is heading and what's currently planned for it. There's lots of other little details that I'm not mentioning, and I'm sure other features will creep in, but that's the basic summary. As far as impersonating an officer goes... will be a great tactic when playing as a serial killer to change what you look like from time-to-time ;) will be pretty difficult for the police to pursue descriptions of you if your description is always changing lol but there's also only so many variations of clothes you can wear... eventually, they'll either figure out who you are or everyone will already be dead XD The keys for buildings will also eventually be handled as loot, so you could take a Police Station Key from a dead officer and everyone will simply assume you're meant to be there when you stroll on through the station with it lol Or you could have fun taking his squad car for a joy-ride as a report of your latest crime comes in through the car's radio. That's about as close as you'll get to impersonating an officer in the game without actually being one.

Which brings me to the last point: when the game is 'over' (the serial killer has been arrested/killed or everyone in the town is dead), there'll be a lovely screen that comes up displaying your stats for the class you played (i.e. arrests made as an officer, crimes committed as the killer, money earned over the course of the game, etc) and a nice little story of how things played out for you in the end. I'll probably have some overall score displayed, which you can showoff to others or try to beat in another round.

Almost forgot: There's also a cooking system that'll be getting implemented as I work my way from Alpha 4 to Alpha 5. All the ingredients and stuff are already in the game, just need to create the crafting interface for combing them into Food products (which is what the Chef job will eventually be doing). Food will also be getting a decay rate added to it after food is purchasable and craftable. The current concept is: in a fridge, it'll take food 5 days before it spoils (and simply disappears) and outside of a fridge it'll take only 1 day. Everything in the game currently gets updated hourly (with the exception of the NPC alarm decay), so basically food will start with a decay value of 120 hours and each hour it'll either go down by 1 point (if in a fridge) or 5 points (not in a fridge) to keep the system adaptable to what the player and NPCs are doing. If I implement the system too soon, then all the food in the game will simply be gone after 5 days and then everyone slowly dies of starvation lol so I gotta add a way to make food/ingredients purchasable first, which means implementing the grocery store :)"

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Despicaville Roguelike
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