The Realms - Beginnings

First Post! Yay! So this is the start of my solo GameDev thread. Up until this point, I’ve just been working on concept design and planning for my game, but with the purchase of a capable computer (UE4 and Mac don’t get along) I hope to be moving to actual development very soon! So let’s start with a little bit about myself.
Current Occupation: A homeschooled sophomore in highschool.
Skills: The basics of HTML, CSS, JavaScript, Processing.js and a little jQuery through codecademy and khanacedemy. A Minecraft hacker, redstonner, and command block programmer. Some artistic/musical talent.
Hobbies: Reading fantasy/sifi books, video gaming, policy debate, surfing tumblr, and procrastinating on homework.
Loves: Good stories, Great story telling, Compelling music, my boat load of fandoms, and my cat, Kitty.

So I’ve always loved the fantasy genre whether it be books, tv shows or video games. And there was this really cool game I used to play when I was a smol child called Fate. It was a magic filled, 3rd person, dungeon crawler RPG on our ancient HP laptop. And I swear it was the coolest thing I had ever played and its still my all-time favorite video game. But when that computer crashed for the 6th time, we lost it. So I started wondering what I would have to do to recreate that game with some tweaks and make it even cooler. And thats what got me into coding and game design. The idea has evolved a lot since then, with aspects from other games incorporated, to make The Realms.
The Realms
Installment: Beginnings
Genre: Fantasy RPG
Person: 1st
Platforms: PC (native), Mac, console
Status: Design, Early Development

I’ll update soon about more of the gameplay and my new computer when it arrives! :slight_smile:

Christmas Update!
Merry Christmas (Eve)!!! So my computer is AWESOME. It runs UE4 and Blender and my other programs very smoothly and without complications thus far. for reference if anyone is interested it’s a 480 CyberpowerPC from BestBuy. The specs are unbelivable for a ~$600 Desktop. Highly recommend it for low-ish budget people like myself. Also, I got FATE again. SO FUN!!!

So moving on to actual development. I’m currently following a tutorial series by TitanicGames for RPGs. It goes very quickly so I’ve had to stop the video repeatedly and catch up, however I’ve found it to be very helpful and I’m learning a lot from it. Although I wouldn’t recommend for true beginners. Take the in-editor tutorials first and read up on the documentation, trust me, its essential before you can do anything else. The plan is currently to take this tutorial all the way through, and then once I’ve finished, I’ll be able to create most of the framework of my game using this first project as a reference. It’s been challenging, the farther I get into the tutorial, the more I’m realizing what I haven’t figured out yet. The area of character leveling and skill trees specifically needs work. I don’t want to use the exact same design most other games have, I think it’d be really cool to simplify and innovate those designs of leveling, skills, and character traits to create something very nuanced. The only issue, I haven’t figured out the way to do that yet.

One thing I have found to be very helpful, is to always have a place to do game design work. I usually have this little blank, black book in my backpack or on my desk. And then I try to figure out and record my game related ideas in that. World building, concept art, storyboards, gameplay design, it all goes there. Its always a good idea to have a design before you start actual development, because now you have a goal to work towards, and an idea of how to get there. And then if you’re planning on recruiting a real artist (if you’re a trashy artist like me) then they have an idea of what they need to do as well.

Have a happy holiday everyone! I’ll keep you posted on any major developments. Hopefully I,ll be able to upload some screenshots by the end of winter break!


Winter Break Summery
Character Mechanics are coming along nicely though I’m still working on getting to work the way I want it to. There are six categories of attributes that the player an invest in: Speed, Power, Dexterity, Accuracy, Strength, and Constitution. Each of these attributes increase certain character stats (movement speed, max energy, vitality regen etc.) As an alternative to an Xp bar, the skills are acquired with Quanta or energy packets. Quanta are acquired by the use of the energy bar. All actions that the player can take (walking, sprinting, attacking, magic, healing) take a certain toll on the energy bar. So in practice, the Quanta are exactly like an XP bar because the more the player does, the more they level up, however it’s more integrated with the whole energy idea and makes makes more sense. As well as an energy bar, the player also has vitality. The vitality is a heartbeat that overlays the energy bar. I thought having a heartbeat for vitality made more sense than a generic health bar. On top of character attributes, I hope to add skills (sword skill, stealth skill, etc) which will upgrade the more they are used, and also different races. I achieved a lot over break, and I’m looking forward to continuing development (albeit at a slower pace) throughout second semester!

The Skill Tree UI

January Progress Report
I’m working on creating a gamedev workflow and documentation on Trello to track all the individual changes, and also to keep development on target. I’ll post the link to that once it’s done. The Attribute System is finished as far as it can go at this point. I spent some time tweaking the Speed, Durability, and Power attributes, trying to make sure the scaling is done at reasonable rate. Also, the base Vitality and Energy Regen system came to a milestone. I wasn’t able to totally finish the Attribute System until I get other systems in place such as attacking, setting up movement animations, and NPC detection, most of which the Titanic Games tutorial series is getting to. The inventory system is what I’m currently working on. I think I’ve established a decent workflow, though I need to commit it to paper. I complete one section/system of the tutorials then I customize it to at least fit the general idea of how I want it to work, then I move on to the next system, updating the old ones as . Once I have all the basic systems in place, then starts the Beta testing making sure the basic stuff works and gels like it’s supposed to. Then comes level design/story implementation and filling out the items, magic, and NPCs. But thats a long way off. There’s an amazing YouTube Channel called Gamemaker’s Toolkit, and I highly recommend it. It talks about different concepts and strategies in game design and how different games either succeed or fail at different aspects. Watching their videos, especially the one on game feel, stories with systems, and the little dotted line, has been immensely helpful going forward in development.