Update 9-23-13: Progress on the Alucard Engine

Wussup peoples! As I said last time, school has restarted for me, so I have been very busy. In fact, as I type this I am in the midst of studying for an intermediate accounting 2 test I will be taking tomorrow. With that being said however, I have still made time to get TONS of stuff done on the engine.
As I also said last time, my next goal was re-inputting all of the basic control actions for Alucard, and completing the controls to implement the attacks, and sub weapons I had created objects for.
Here is the list of what I completed in the last month:
  • Redid, simplified, and improved my controller, movement and collision scripts. They work MUCH better now.
  • Basic actions have been re-input: this includes idle, walking, sitting, jumping, double jumping, high jumping, backstepping, landing on the ceiling, dark metamorphosis, crouching, dive kicking, wing smash, & hard landings. This includes all of the little nuances & animations for each action such as when Alucard changes from jumping straight up, to moving forward in it, the different animations for stopping suddenly, or stopping on slopes/near edges, versus flat surfaces, etc. Basic movement speed has been almost doubled, and jumps are now much less “floaty” feeling, meaning while you jump the same height, you will start to fall downward sooner ONCE you reach the peak of your jump.
  • The new switch sub weapon controls, as well as the new switch weapon in hand1 or hand2 controls have been implemented.
  • I have coded in something new that was inspired by Serio’s Castlevania game: now holding up while standing still will gradually cause your MP to restore faster and FASTER while you hold it. With the much lower max MP I have implemented, this will allow a strategic player with the opportunity to restore MP faster between enemy attacks, thus allowing you to use MP based attacks more often.
  • All basic weapon attack actions have been coded in: this includes swords, spears, knives, knuckles, great swords, and clubs. Just like in the original game landing while using a mid air attack will cause it to cancel as you hit the ground. THE EXCEPTIONS BEING great swords and spears. Many air attacks have also been tweaked speed wise so using them in mid air is slightly slower. This was done because in most metroidvanias it is actually beneficial to generally use air attacks, and rarely use standing ones. Alucard’s sword and club weapons were ESPECIALLY overly fast in mid air in SOTN, compared to everything else and their grounded/crouching versions.  This helps make ground ones much more useful now. Overall attack speeds for all weapons have been increased as well, BTW.
  • All sub weapon actions have been coded in for all of their various levels: this includes shurikens, summon spirit, hellfire, boomerang, the pentagram (there is now a 3rd version of it based on Shaft’s pentagram too in ROB), and the stopwatch (the wolf’s howl and bat fire will be re-input when form changes are re-inputted as well, but those are both VERY fast and already done). Sub weapon attacks all have an animation now, and if one is used in mid air, the attack animation will continue when you land so NO SPAMMING them. Also while you can switch between sub weapons with a button press, you cannot have TWO DIFFERENT types of sub weapons on screen at once, so again: NO SPAMMING can go on.
  • All basic critical arts have been done: this means the blue uppercut for knuckles, holbein dagger for knives, valmanway for swords, rune sword for great swords, javelin for spears, and armor bash for clubs. All have been tweaked and majorly improved, and have their own ground and air animations just like subs, and work the same way when landing from an aerial one. The long range ones (javelin toss and rune sword) also have a delay between uses so they CANNOT be abused.
  • A sort of attack cancel system is in place: normal attacks & subs can be cancelled into critical arts, backstepping, high jumping, mist form, crashes, dark metamorphosis, soul steal, or wing smashing. Critical arts can be cancelled by all of the same EXCEPT another critical art. Backstepping can be cancelled by a normal or critical attack, high jump, or sub weapon, BUT only once until the moves finish; so if you cancel from attack to backstep, or backstep to attack even, this prevents scrubs from spamming and ABUSING it to move even faster across screen, or attack TONS of times in a split second over and over.
  • After high jumping you can now hold on to the ceiling for a short time longer or let go instantly if you choose; the animation has also been changed to NOT look ridiculous like before.
  • One of the four available secondary critical arts is done: the Shotel’s throwing special. This leaves the Laevatin’s firestorm, the teleport slash with the Alucard sword, and the triple stab with the Alucard spear.
I THINK I got everything there! I managed to not only improve my old code, neatness, and ease of following wise (95% of Alucard’s code is now in his object instead of scattered into scripts ALL OVER; the hitbox object only really has collision and basic speed info), but I also cut out about 1000 lines of code too! I even improved it in a way that guarantees less bugs will ever pop up, and when they do I will be able to find them MUCH quicker.
Next up I have to finish the last 3 of the secondary critical arts, do shields (VERY easy and simple), then create the new soul steal, and implement the controls for crash objects I coded in. Then re-inputting bat form is next (also VERY easy), followed by mist form, then the big one: redoing wolf form.
Stay tuned for more updates!
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26 Responses to Update 9-23-13: Progress on the Alucard Engine

  1. Shien says:

    A particular problem came up to my mind lately, Since you’ll be doing a story mode for richter and maria… how will you get voices for them? will you leave theyr story audio-less? or will you try to find voice actor that sound like the originals? or even will you use audio editing tools to get syllabi and then make sentences with those?

  2. Andy says:

    Seriously looking forward to this more than Lords of Shadow 2. ^__^

  3. I know I saw this project forever ago, it’s really awesome to know you’re still working on it. Just figured I’d let you know there’re still people stoked about it.

  4. dire534v says:

    Hey Esco, gotta say that I love that you’re doing this…SotN is actually my *favorite game of all time* and I geek out constantly about the fact that this is happening. I recall reading somewhere that you mentioned you don’t really want to hear from anyone unless it’s specifically about assisting with coding or sprite work. I guess i’ll just throw it out there that while I don’t have any of that to provide, I really genuinely believe that I have some useful ideas to share with you, ideas that nobody else will have the imagination to cultivate nor the ability to articulate them in the manner that I’m capable of.

    I know there’s no reason for you to believe that there’s anything which would set me apart from anyone else trying to ‘help’ but I suppose that’s up to your discretion. I just would want a chance to potentially influence this positively in some way, even if it’s really minor. I have several ideas I’d like to share with you, if you’re open to at least giving it a read. It won’t bother me if you don’t end up incorporating any of it, and it’s cool if you’re still not even open to giving it a read, but it would be awesome if you did.

    Sorry if this isn’t the best way to contact you too, but, i’d like to hear back from you!

    Either way, you’re doing a great job and I hope you finish this game!

    P.S. do you take donations?

  5. madlow says:

    greaaaaaaaaat!!! ^^ u re awesome!!! :D

  6. TAmus says:

    Hi Esco, Any chance you put this as a kickstarter project ? or konami can overkil you for this ?
    by the time i recommend you to take a look at a game made with game maker engine named Valdis history:abissal city . it´s a metroidvania game. ^^ continue with this awesome project.

  7. Hermano says:

    Hey man, I just played the demo.

    I just wanna say kudos. You’ve been doing this a long time, I cant imagine spending so much time on something, even something I love. Thats dedication. Simply awesome.

    I cant wait to play the finished product. Thanks for the hard work :)

  8. Hiram Gurjão says:

    I’m Brazilian, 33 years old
    I really fall in love with your Project. Things I thought could be better in game experience, You just did it!
    But I just can’t play, nothing but the Prologue with Richter. I’m tired of trying to go further then the Prologue. After defeating the Count Drácula for the first time soon as the text about the desapearing of Richter, the game backs to the main page.
    Please help me, please!!!
    I have saw all vídeos with the upgrades you made, and I’m so exciting to play just a little bit more than the prologue!

  9. Dr4k4r says:

    Hi Esco, I wonder if this documentation ( http://www.romhacking.net/documents/528/ ) covers everything that has been discovered about Castlevania SOTN or if you come to find out more when was doing your hack. :)

  10. matteo says:

    This looks better and better with each post Esco. Any chance of 16:9 support with the game maker engine?

  11. maikson says:

    Hey just to telling do you know Jean Michael jarre music’s? the quality of the songs remind the Castlevania soundtrack on all types of scenarios.

    Just saying if you like good music to get inspiration :D

  12. alucardspear says:

    I didn’t mean transitions, I meant the actual map/room/target coordinates for where the player has to go when he collides with the door.

  13. Pyromaniac says:

    So with the new game maker, do you plan on porting to android? I play SOTN on my phone with an emulator and touch controls feel pretty good for it, considering touchscreen usually sucks for gaming. The gamemaker now supports porting to android right?

  14. TerminusEst says:

    Hey man, been a long time SotN player myself. Last week I was bored, so I played SotN again after some years, but this time I used the luck code and played through without anything equipped, unless mandatory. Later, on the tougher bosses on the inverted castle, I had to use something, my attacks would deal just 1 dmg lol. So I used Holbein Dagger, to keep it fair. Galamoth… this guy I couldn’t take it without the circlet that absorves lightning dmg. Finished just a while ago, and I had some crazy ideas I would like to implement in the game. After googling a bit, found you ^^.

    Just a quick question, to raise or lower my expectations. How much percentage do you think you have already done?

    • Esco says:

      Can’t answer that, but I will say this: after playing games like touhouvania, strider 2, serio’s castlevania, MIG’s fan game, and even my own little hacked version I can’t play the original anymore. it’s just too slow, stiff and easy for me.

  15. Adolf Hitler Wannabe says:

    Goodness gracious, I’m just amazed at how well you’re juggling school and working on this project at the same time. Kudos to you for all the updates and making coding sound so easy(i know its crazily hard to go through lines and lines of code just to get one thing working right).

    All the best to your tests, I hope you do really well on them(because you deserve it for working hard), and I can’t wait for this project to be ready @_@

  16. good luck in your studies dude, and great updates though.

    BTW i really like how you looks so motivated about coding when say VERY easy :P

    keep it up.

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