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Thursday, February 22, 2018

Battle Gem Ponies DevLog #159 (Prep-Work)

     Still setting up the new BGP workflow. Gotta convert the spritesheets to super-efficient packed-textures, recreate all the prefabs using the new Unity systems, and start painting all the tilemaps that will make up the region of Pinto... 

     Exciting things are coming, and if you're curious about the steps towards this glory, then check out this week's devlog!

Been squeezing all the related menu pieces together so they take up less file size and all load at once when needed.

  • Converting 2D Toolkit Sprites to Regular Texture-Packed Unity Sprites
  • Made NPC Sprite Sheets Dynamic (so I can add extra frames to bring cutscenes to life)
  • Submission to Orlando Overdrive Indie Game Showcase (live demo of BGP in April to motivate me to get the alpha done)
  • Found a More Efficient Way to Animate Moves Using Animated Particle Sprites & Object Pooling
  • Studied Even More Unity Tutorials
  • Charted Out What New Tasks Need to Be Done
  • Adjusted Development Task List to Follow New Workflow
  • Purchased TexturePacker Pro
     Lessons Learned:
  • I leaned a lot about efficiency and organization by doing this. I also mastered some hotkey shortcuts that are speeding up my dev process by a huge chunk.

       I've been spending a lot of time away from my computer this week during some cross-country traveling, but stuff is still coming along. A lot of the grunt work getting this new work pipeline in order is tedious renaming/recreating, reorganizing and general file management or asset testing. Hoping to have it all done in the next couple days so I can start showing off BGP's cool new look & feel.

     A little hectic thing happened where the TexturePacker website went down for maintenance exactly when I was purchasing the full Unity Compatible version and I never got a license key. But after reaching out to the dev, he got back to me the very next day to explain the mishap and give me the key I needed. Cool guy.

Orlando Overdrive is adding local indie games to their VGM concert!
Since I want to become known as Orlando's resident indie dev, I should get in on this...

     I'm gonna try to present my game at this Video Game Concert thing my friend runs in April. Of course I have no real showcase equipment, but I think I can get away with just putting up a tablet version of BGP to play, and a QR code to the latest demo surrounded by some MLP & Pokemon figurines to get the idea across. It's a small thing for small fry's like me in Orlando, so we'll see how things turn out. 

Also, I came up with this new short description pitch for BGP to use for events like this:

Command super-powered, shape-shifting ponies in this turn-based RPG Adventure! Embark on a journey to become the best pony trainer in the world and protect the magical creatures from those who want to use their power for evil. Master the elements and special move combos to gain the advantage in Rock/Paper/Scissors style shapeshifting combat!

     Took last week off to spend time with a loved one across the country for Valentine's week, but still found a few hours each day to grind out some progress on reorganizing BGP's sprites and assets. Things are looking good, but I really need to hurry with this before it consumes the rest of February.

     It also doesn't help that I got stuck at an airport for an entire day yesterday. But it gave me lots of time to mess around with BGP notes, write out a detailed task list for finishing the new pipeline, and figuring out some clear weekly goals to push this project towards completion! I'm back in the saddle, let's get this game out there!

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