Post news RSS Indie Game Devlog 27: Urban Planning!

Lower Ionia gets completely reworked! The city also gets some new procedurally-generated NPCs with some basic pathfinding!

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Hey everyone. This week, I wanted to go over a new city area that I actually worked on a while back but never made an update for it.

Ionia LowerLevel NEWbrighter

[Lower Ionia - new version]

This is the updated Lower Ionia City. The old version was oversized with lots of dead space in it. You would walk for a while and never really get anywhere.

IoniaCity LowerLevel OLD

[Lower Ionia - old version]

I decided to delve into the world of urban planning, and came up with this design for the new city (shoutout to Pixel Architect on Youtube!). I like the new design a lot more, and I think the layout is much better. After building out most of the city, the next step was to fill it up with people. Instead of meticulously hand-crafting each individual NPC, I decided to go with a more procedurally-generated approach.


After making all the body parts and walk animations and randomly picking colors for them, I needed to load them into the city...


and add some basic pathfinding AI. I used a series of waypoints for different routes that the NPCs could follow. Basically, once they reach a waypoint, their target destination would update the next one in the list, until they make it to the final destination.


There are lots of things to do in Lower Ionia. I designed some of the areas to emphasize more exploration. You might see a treasure chest, but not be able to easily get to it. There’s also some simple platforming that leads to more loot. You can also visit Atlas’s apartment, smash some synths in the factory, sell old components at the junk shop, check out the hoverboard shop, and ride the elevator to Upper Ionia. I’ll save some of those areas for the next devlog.



Thanks for reading, and I hope to see you next time!

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