Updates, Melee Combat and More.
By Ian Fisch
Topic 1: Status Update
We’d like to apologize for the infrequent progress updates since concluding the Road Redemption kickstarter.
We have limited manpower, and for us the most important thing is to get Road Redemption into your hands as soon as possible.
We’re currently refining the core elements of Road Redemption to make the game as fun and satisfying as possible.
Recently, we’ve implemented splitscreen multiplayer for up to four players on a single computer (or console). We’ll post an update on the technical aspects of that later, for anyone who’s curious.
Our goal, vis-a-vis splitscreen, is to include drop-in/drop-out co-op gameplay for the entire “single player” campaign. With the technical aspects pretty much conquered, the remaining challenge involves the design.
For example, if you’re playing mission 20, and have a heavily upgraded bike and characters, what happens if your two friends come over and want to join? Should they have to play mission 20 as level 1 characters or should they take on whatever stats your character currently has?
Another co-op question is what happens in-between missions? Should each player have access to his own separate storefront for buying upgrades or should there be a single store, with all upgrades going to everyone who’s playing? What about cash earned while on the road? Should the money go to whatever player earns it, or to a communal pool?
As you can see there are a lot of questions, and we’d appreciate your suggestions on the topic.
Topic 2: Rogue Legacy
I regret to inform you that at least one day of productivity this month was lost playing Rogue Legacy. If you’re a fan of action games, and own a PC gamepad, I recommend purchasing it immediately.
In my opinion, the game just does an amazing number of things right. For example, you’re almost never locked in place while you wait for an animation to finish; you can swing your sword while in a full-on sprint. The swing animation is just layered on top of the run animation.
Compare this to the Castlevania series (Symphony of the Night, Dawn of Sorrow, etc), where every attack stops you in your tracks, leaving you open to enemy fire.
If the ultimate goal of a gaming interface is to make the player forget that there’s a layer of computation between what he wants his character to do, and his character doing it, than forcing the player to be stuck in place, despite the fact that he’s he’s holding right on the d-pad, is bad design. The less control the player has, the more frustrated he’s likely to get when he takes damage.
The upgrade system in Rogue Legacy is also a work of art. Whenever you die, you have a chance to buy character upgrades with the money you earned that life. What’s interesting is that whatever money you don’t spend, you have to throw away before coming back to life. This means that you can’t just slowly chip away at the game in a challengeless grind; if you don’t earn a significant sum of money before dying, you won’t be able to afford any upgrades on your post-mortem trip to the store.
There are definitely lessons in Rogue Legacy that we will be incorporating into Road Redemption.
Topic 3: Road Redemption Melee Combat Controls.
Road Redemption’s gameplay largely focuses on melee combat. I’d like to share with you the current actions the player will be able to perform with melee weapons. We’ll go into this same level of detail on gun combat, in a later update.
The following are Road Redemption’s melee actions mapped to the default Xbox 360 gamepad buttons. We’re still tinkering with the mouse/keyboard controls and will have an update on those later.
Throttle – Makes your bike go. The more you hold down the trigger, the more torque goes to the back tire.
Handbrake (Quickturn) – Holding this button down allows you to make sharp turns. Since Road Redemption is focused on combat, you won’t see super curvy tracks, but this button will be there when you need it.
Nitro – Hold the button down to get a burst of speed. You can earn more nitro, mid-mission by taking down enemies in combat.
Quick Attack – A quick, low damage melee attack with whatever weapon is in your hand.
Strong Attack – A slow, high damage melee attack with whatever weapon is in your hand. In addition to dealing a large amount of damage, strong attacks are more likely to deal concussive blows, which stun your opponent for a moment. They’re also more likely to result in your enemy dropping the weapon in his hand, especially if it’s a gun.
Headslam – Grab your opponent and slam his head into his own handlebars. If you’re familiar with fighting games, you can think of this as a throw move. It’s unblockable, but you must be very close to your opponent to perform it.
Block – Hold the button down in order to block strong and quick attacks. Depending on the weapon you’re blocking with, and other factors, there’s a chance that your opponent could brake his own weapon on your block. While this means he has fewer options to attack you with, it also means his weapon is no longer there to steal.
Steal – If you press the block button at the precise moment of your enemy’s attack, there’s a chance you will steal his weapon, rather than simply blocking the attack. It’s risky because if you press the button too late, you’ll end up taking a hit.
Kick – Kicking an opponent’s bike will send it flying accross the road. This won’t cause your opponent any damage on its own, but could put him on a trajectory to slam into a roadside object or oncoming vehicle. Like the headslam move, it’s unblockable.
All of these actions are still a work of progress, and may change completely before the game is released. Let us know what you think. All feedback is appreciated.
I want to thank you guys for your participation in the forum and, as always, for supporting our kickstarter.