Post news RSS Indie Game Devlog 35: Spin Attack and Abilities!

This week's devlog is all about player abilities! There's lots to cover in the game like the new spin attack and time stretch field!

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Resonant Blade Devlog 35

Spin Attack and Abilities


INTRO

Hey everyone and welcome to another devlog of Resonant Blade, a 2d action adventure game inspired by Zelda and Hyper Light Drifter. Just a quick update with my computer - it’s back up and running, although I did end up losing a few hundred gigs of data… Luckily, I had most of the important stuff backed up and after a heart-attack inducing encounter with a few BSODs [ wrong chipset drivers ] we’re up and running again with a better cpu and motherboard. Although this experience was unfortunate, upgrading from components that were around 6 yrs old have reduced compile times in Unity by at least 50%, so yea, there’s that. And that’s pretty dang good! I’m actually really pleased with that because waiting too long for scripts to compile or for the game to actually play is very distracting. This might even save time in the long run and keep me more focused on the task at hand. Ok, let’s get on with the devlog.

Today, I want to show you all some of the updates with the player abilities that I’ve been working on. Up to this point, Atlas can pretty much attack, dash, scan, heal, parry, shoot out a blade beam, and throw some grenades. Some things that I’ve worked on before like the Sonic Slam and Phase Shifter are still working but need some visual upgrades and bug fixes.

SPIN ATTACK

I don’t remember if I showed this before or not, but I had created a mod item that allowed the player to use a charge attack. Basically, hold down the attack button for a short time then do a smash attack that does more damage. I decided to scrap it for a spin attack instead. You’ll still need to charge up the attack to use this and have the right mod equipped for it to work. I added in a visual effect for charging up the attack where energy is being drawn in. I also added a little effect for when it’s charged up. Atlas will also flash white while the attack is being held and is ready to use. Like other attacks, I had to create two different animations - one for Atlas’s sprite and one for the Resonant Blade swipe effect. That way I can change out the color of the blade really easily to show which Resonance is currently equipped.


HARMONY SHIELD

The visuals for the Harmony Shield (renamed from Harmonic Shield to fit text into UI Box) have been updated. The old version was generated using Particle Systems, but I changed that to sprites and animations. In order to create this effect, I ended up using a lot of different layers. Two layers are for the horizontal ring expanding outwards (one in front of the player and one behind). One layer is the vertical ring, another one is a transparent circle over the player. Then there’s another 2 layers for the sweeping effect that goes around the sphere (one FG, one BG). The last layer are just a few spark animations that are duplicated around the player with a random delay for when their animations start. All of those combined create this really cool forcefield effect around the player. The impact effect still needs to be changed out for a pixelart version instead of particles, but, overall, I’m really happy with this. As before, the functionality of the shield is pretty much the same. You’ll need to have the Orange and Green frequencies unlocked to use this Triad ability. The Harmony Shield can sustain a certain amount of damage before dissipating and will absorb an enemy’s attack of the same Resonance. If an enemy’s attack doesn’t match the shield’s Resonance, the shield will take damage and the player will take half damage.


TIME STRETCH AND DEFLECTION MOD

Along with the Harmony shield, I also started working on a few more combo abilities that will require 3 of the same type of Resonance to activate. One of these abilities is called Time Stretch, and it basically acts as a slow motion field around the player. This will slow all enemies and projectiles. Combine this with the Spin Attack and Deflect mods, you can deflect tons of projectiles that are slowed back to the enemies, destroying them. Speaking of deflecting projectiles, this is something that I’ve always wanted to add in, but I was holding out because I originally wanted the parry ability to be more central in combat. So, I decided to make this an unlockable ability that can be enabled with an equippable mod. And, I have to say, Deflecting projectiles is very satisfying. Deflecting a ton of slo-mo projectiles, is even more so. The Time Stretch ability will last for 10 seconds before deactivating, so use it wisely. Although, you can just charge it up again with 3 more Blue Resonances. If the Time Stretch is already active and you activate it again, it will refresh the duration back to 10 seconds. Getting the slow motion effect to work was a little harder than I thought initially. I couldn’t just alter Unity's built in Time.timeScale because that would affect the player as well. And trying to change just the player’s timers from scaled time to unscaled time via a trigger was a bit too convoluted; I used timers before I learned about Coroutines, so Atlas and all of the HUD elements have a lot of different timers to try and sort through. The easiest thing to do was to just alter the enemy’s movement speed and projectile speed when the Time Stretch ability was active. So that’s what I ended up doing and it’s working smoothly so far. The visuals for this ability were very similar to the Harmony Shield except there are less layers and it uses a Scanline Shader effect.


UI/HUD UPDATES

I worked on some of the UI elements like the little icons and the text names for these abilities in the Triads Menu. Some of these are blurred out because I didn't want to spoil everything:). I also added in UI indicator pop-ups that appear on the HUD for each Triad ability when they’re charged up.


RESONANT CHARGE PICKUPS

The last thing I wanted to share with you is a simple addition to acquiring Resonant Charges that can make the combat a lot more dynamic and fun. Before, the only way to charge up the Resonant Blade was to parry an enemy’s attack or collect a charge from a Resonant Stone by striking it. Now, if you hit an enemy with the matching frequency, they will drop a Resonant Charge on the ground that you can pick up by walking up to it. The player will be able to strategize in different ways now and can charge up the Resonant Blade much quicker to use Triads. I think this will open up the combat in a good way. The next step is to just make some different types of enemies. I have a few in the works and will hopefully show you all some new enemies soon.

Alright, that’s it for this week. Thanks for reading!

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