School’s Out.

We got the word a little over a week ago that school will not meet for the remainder of the 19-20 school year.  That definitely frees up time to work on my project…inbetween prepping lessons for awful platforms like Canvas and the awful Office365 platform our District adopted (I’m a Google man, myself).  At least I’m not our IT department, right?

The virus is still ravaging the globe – it’s started hitting a little close to home, with a friend’s uncle dying from complications last week.  While I know we have a long road ahead, I’m hopeful that we’ll come out of this in one piece, if not a little stir crazy.  What I wouldn’t give for dinner at El Sombrero Mexican Restaurant right now!!  Ashley is crazy for a trip to a Hibachi steakhouse.  🙂

Anyway, progress is happening on many different fronts.  I’ve gotten concept art for around 3/4 of the town’s buildings complete, and I’m really excited about the art style!  I’m really coming into my own as far as Painterly style is concerned.  This should give the game a very unique look.  There are A LOT of Stardew Valley clones out there right now – I don’t want people dismissing our game as one.  In the end, I think our attention to detail and unique integration of tried-and-true game mechanics will help us stand out.

This is honestly the first time I’ve had a large block of time to re-examine my work from last summer.  I wrote the Core engine last summer…twice.  When I recompiled the documentation, there are a lot of quality-of-life changes I plan to make with the code.


What am I working on this week??

I’m alternating between art, level design, and code.  I’ve gotten the size and layout of the town into a scene, run around it a million times, timed it, measured it, and compared it to other “game towns.”  I have a layout that I think adds character to the game.

Don’t worry…there’s no school (not yet, anyway).

I made mock-ups of building interiors, and designed scenes for those.  Next, I’ll wire everything together and get the basic geography of our world together.  This will be the first time the game world has been “walkable.”  Don’t get me wrong…it’s large swaths of grass and dirt, with big square sprites as placeholders where landmarks and features will be.

While it’s not much to look at, I’ll admit that I really enjoy getting to see the world I’m building.  I’ve always had a vivid imagination, and would frequently get lost in the games I’d play.  I identified with the characters, and enjoyed leaving this crazy world for one that let me play the hero.  Who doesn’t love that???



None yet.  When I get the town’s buildings in place, I’ll show you the layout’s progression – from our original scribble map, to the draft layout, to a screenshot of the town in prototype.  We’ve made a lot of progress!