Update 12/24: Merry Christmas everyone! Video and Cost Sheet inside!

Ok, so in my last update I promised an itemized sheet detailing the expenses related to Alucard’s new sprite set. And I am a man of my word so I have put that information into an Excel sheet here, INCLUDING any donations over $10 that I have received (For those curious, below that range I received one $10 donation and three $5 ones this year). NOTE: that this sheet does NOT include of the necessary new animations needed for the weapons themselves like spears, swords, etc., which are still being worked on now: sotn-cost-sheet
The bottom line after donations is that I am still down by over $2300. So donations are a HUGE need right now and can be made via paypal to esco1979@cfl.rr.com. Considering the costs, for any other characters, I WILL have to get some kind of fund raising going (the exception being Classic Intro Richter who is part done already) or they just won’t be getting made. Because it’s just not feasible for me to spend about $2000 each for New Richter, Maria’s full moveset and any other characters I try to put in (which I have concept info and full move sets for 3 more Castlevania characters besides them). Not to mention the new animations that will be needed for enemies, effects, weapons, etc.
The other issue of course is time. With more funds, I can afford to pay more artists at once, which equals much FASTER progress. Alucard’s sheet was scheduled to take 3-6 months. But took about 10 months instead since all I could afford was to have only a single artist working on it. Luckily I had one that was truly dedicated and who put his very soul into each animation he crafted.
I understand how before anyone dedicates any major funds that they, of course, want to see what they are getting. And I fully understand that. So my intention is to get all of the new animations for Alucard implemented ASAP, and show a working demo of the game so that people can truly see what I am trying to make a reality for the fans. Hopefully, that will stimulate others to want to help more in any way that they can. As they say: seeing is believing.
Anyway enough about money. Let’s talk about gameplay some! 😀 I decided to expand on Alucard quite a bit. I wanted to make the combat system quite a bit more in depth compared to the original game of basically slash/dodge/slash/dodge etc. I wanted to include things such as the ability to pop up some monsters, knock back others, dealing with enemies who have armor that reduces the damage done to them and being able to actually combo attacks into each other. I wanted you to feel like you had something to handle ANY scenario and for the controls to feel very free exciting.
At the moment, the combat system for Alucard works like this:
  • X (square on playstation controllers) is the normal button for each weapon set. B (circle on PS) is the strong button for each weapon. You switch between both weapon sets by hitting R1 (which can be done during attacks, allowing you to change weapons mid combo).
  • Pressing Up+X uses sub weapon 1. Up+B uses sub weapon 2. You get to choose these at the start of each stage and at menu checkpoints mid-stage if you want to change. There are currently 5 sub weapons: Hellfire, Summon Spirit, Stopwatch, Agnea and one final one. All of these can be used in the air and ground and have animations. The bat still has bat fire which is heavily improved and the wolf has a new howling sub weapon.
  • Blocking with a shield is done via L2, Mist form is set to R2. These both share a guard meter that refills slowly over time.
  • R1 is to do your chosen crash. At the moment there are 5 in human form: Tetra Spirit, a heavily modified Dark Inferno, Power of Sire, a very modified Soul Steal and one final one that I won’t spoil. But trust me when I say longtime fans of the series will get a serious thrill from it. Wolf form also has one: the old moon rod special has been modified into a new Crash called Crescent Moon.
  • Weapon Set 1: Swords & Clubs are designed to be faster, with less range, but allow you to chain attacks in mid-air. The video below demonstrates the basic 4 hit ground and 4 hit air combos for this weapon. They do overall the most DPS, but less damage per individual hit and less stun/knockback amounts than:
  • Weapon Set 2: Spears & 2 handed swords have more range, more damage PER hit, but overall DPS is lower than weapon set 1. These also do more damage to armored enemies than weapon set 1. However, these only have one attack in the air, so no aerial chains. On the ground, they both have a standing 3 attack combo.
  • Weapon set 1 has an attack that can launch enemies into the air, while weapon set 2 has a knockback move that can smack enemies back.
  • Attack priority goes from blocking with a shield, normal attacks, to sub weapons, to special moves, to crashes/mist. So as you see in the vid you can do 4 sword attacks in the air, cancel that into hellfire, cancelled into valmanway, then into mist form if you needed to dodge a counter attack. You could even start it by doing a 3 hit ground combo ending in a launcher, then go into the series above (assuming the enemy didn’t die halfway thru it).
  • Speaking of specials, Alucard has Valmanway, both form changes and the ability to summon a Demon Familiar. Has also has one or two more specials that I won’t be spoiling here. These take MP and generally have cool down. I was originally going to give Alucard a 2nd type of Shadow MP…. but after extensive testing it just felt like it was unnecessary.
  • Wolf Form: has a bite attack, a sub, a crash and a 2nd normal MP costing attack using the runesword. He still has a dash too though it does work different now.
  • Bat Form: has bat echo, a sub and a charging attack now. It also can summon bats to acts as drones to it and can hang from the roof.
I’ve attached a video here that shows off some of his animations as well as how fluid and more modern the attack system is. This includes being able to cancel attacks, more speed, more maneuverability, etc. The white object that you see getting hit is a dummy enemy used for testing purposes. For those with a keen eye, you will notice several combat nuances in addition to the many changes in this video. Please note that effects are missing from this video as are things like weapon attack animations. Some have yellow placeholders and others just aren’t there. That is because those are things that are all WIP and to come later. I also don’t show off a number of things that I may change later as the game is still HEAVILY in development like swimming.
But I wanted to put something out there for the longtime fans of this as all of you have been very supportive and patient. And I thank you for that. I know I haven’t updated a lot in the last few months. Believe me when I say that developing a game on your own that originally was designed and created by a team of professionals while still paying your bills and dealing with all the JOYS of real life is very, VERY time-consuming. But it’s something I am truly passionate about and enjoy doing. Sadly real life (and bills, lol) have to come first, and that causes lots of unexpected delays. But as always I keep plugging away. And gladly so.
Anyways, Merry Christmas everyone. I’m off to celebrate with my family. Stay tuned for more updates!

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4 Responses to Update 12/24: Merry Christmas everyone! Video and Cost Sheet inside!

  1. Jerk Store says:

    It’s hard to imagine many people donating unless word really gets out there of what you’re doing, Esco. I guess you’re well aware of that.

    • Esco says:

      A lot of people in the Castlevania community know about it as far as I know. But not outside of it. If you have a suggestion on how to get the project more exposure, feel free to share it.

  2. Andreas Asimakis says:

    Great update, Esco! I just sent a donation your way! Looking forward to seeing more updates from you in 2017.

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