Hey everyone, to all who asked about when the game is coming out. Many thanks for the interest, it makes me really happy to see the support and really anxious to not be able to give a definitive answer. So here is some info:
Well it turns out that the last 1% of the game is actually 20% of the effort. The game itself is technically done, it is currently playable from start to finish and has been for a while. However some details are still missing. Credits sequences, disclaimers, some last secrets, polishing the difficulties and adding a couple of different game modes are still keeping us more busy than we expected.
And we need to sort out some things about the release logistics and trailer too… having a game done does not mean it’s ready for release apparently. This is really making me anxious as we all wanted to release the game weeks ago, but it’s just not ready yet.
We hope to be able to soon announce a teaser with a definite release date, but we will hold it until we are sure we can keep that date 100%. We are really sorry about the delays as you can tell we are new at this, there are thing we couldn’t foresee. Thanks to all who wrote, we will keep you updated.
If you ever get to see this animation in game, you will know the meaning of hate.
So, we decided to put a couple of pixelated cutscenes in important parts to add some extra flavor to the game. This as also a good excuse excuse to make some pixel art that isn’t regular sprites like enemies or backgrounds. They cinematics are a bit non-animated because we really didn’t want to spend too much time and because we thought there was never that much animations when it came to cinematics in the old times.
In any case, we got inspired by cut scenes from games such as Batman or Ninja Gaiden on NES but since our game is kind of a humorous I tried to make it funny looking but keeping it still a bit bad-ass…
So here is the process of making one of our frames:
Last week we held the first two official closed beta tests. We had many people play before, but only casually in conventions or at events and in those cases people rarely got past the second level.
Last week on Monday and Sunday we gathered some actual gamers and brought the whole complete game for them to play.
After 3 hours of solid gaming the tester was watching the end cut scene and asked “when is the sequel?” but just at that moment, the marine arrived in hell and I had to tell him that he had finished only the first half of the game. And that that the levels in the second half are way longer.
It seems the game is way longer than I expected, trial and error means that it takes a while for players to finish a level. But I’m relieved to say that with the amount of checkpoints, dying didn’t feel like a terrible punishment but a chance to try again. I’d say it clocks in at 6+ hours of gameplay depending on how good you are, and this is not taking collecting the upgrades or secrets into account.
The difficulty was a scary factor for me, since the game is hard and I thought it might be too difficult and become frustrating. Players played in normal difficulty; It’s the only one right now that is balanced. I’ve seen people struggle, it’s not an easy game. When I asked if I should lower the difficulty everyone said that it’s fine. “It’s just that you can’t finish it without learning how to play” said one tester, and that sounded alright. Plus you can always restart a level in easy.
Overall the testing went really well. Everyone was very impressed with the soundtrack. Hearing that people enjoyed playing and the positive feedback was very motivating. We are all really tired from the hours we put in the game the last two months, it was insane. But its all coming to an end.
Now we are finishing up the options menus, the credits, the scores, the secrets, the difficulties and the trailer. Only the details now.
We mixed a lot of enemies from all doom games because there were so many cool demons and monsters that we couldn´t just stay only on the first two games. Also we think the concept of “demaking” a game is very interesting. Reversing aspects of, for example a cacodemon to make it cute or grabbing an ultra detailed and scary character like a Summoner and make it 60 pixels tall was endlessly entertaining.
Of course, while making all this sprites I always had theirs very-hi-res counterparts near by. I actually bought the Doom 4 art book only to have a legit reference guide to make my silly pixelart.
I used the concept art for everything from colors to ides for repeating tiles for backgrounds and floors.
And here are some examples of the current sprites on MiniDoom 2 vs their original 3d hi-res inspirations:
Couldn’t advance too much this week because life got in the way. But we are back in business now. Here are more screenshots (sorry, no time for gifs). Lots of things we haven’t shown yet. And yes, thats the classic Spider Mastermind. It makes an appearance in a certain level, but is definitely not the final boss of the game. The game is moving along.
Well, it looks like we missed the Christmas deadline and the 2017 deadline. The game will take a bit longer but hopefully no more than a couple of weeks. We will give a release date when we find some time to work on the trailer. Have a happy new year everyone!
Getting stuff done each week, this time we won’t stop for the holidays. We will actually use them to finish whatever is missing in the game.
I can happily say that the main menu is finally working properly; we got a very necessary options menu where you can configure the quality of life basic things that were missing in MiniDoom1. This includes music and SFX volume, windowed or full screen mode and configurable inputs (currently under construction).
The main menu font was too clunky for these menus
For the windowed mode I put 3 default sizes in place and the game will also allow manual window resizing and maximizing. I turner manual resize off in MiniDoom1 because I didn’t want weird screen sizes to alter the graphics. But for MiniDoom2 I decided “what the hell” the player can have whatever experience they want with the game.
Some of the data display is still missing, but the data is there.
Also, there is steady progress with the level graphics. Here are some more screenshots:
I’m happy with how everything is turning out. And I wish I could show samples of the great job the music team is doing, but you will get to listen to it soon enough. See you all soon!
Let’s take a look at what the first levels are. The first 2 levels of the game are pretty tame.
The first level is of course the beloved Hangar; it has the purpose of teaching the basic mechanics of the game and is the home of the Shotgun and the Grenades. It doesn’t have much combat or platforming.
It has some nice outside areas though
2- Central Processing
The second level Is Central Processing, it has a high tech setting. The level will give you two new powerups very early: Double Jump and the Plasma Gun. Yeah plasma is the second weapon in the game, this is because it has an important role. The weapon is very powerfull, but it consumes a lot of ammo and your maximum energy cells are not very high at the start.
High tech all the way
The rest of the level has more platforming than combat and a lot of enemies in angles to get players used to the double jump and plasma. There are plenty of electric traps and the first chosen hellspawn awaits there to battle.
Shit gets serious
Level three is the Foundry, a Doom2016 inspired level. And it’s here where you learn the last of the basic mechanics like rolling around and using switches. It is a large stage with a lot of combat. This level is the first real challenge in your journey.
Seconds away from death.
But I won’t get much more into the levels than this. I don’t want to spoil too much, also I don’t think I will do any more of these descriptions for the other levels, so you’ll just have to play them.