Despite it being quiet here on the blog front, development on “Call the Blacksmith” has been going really well. A whole raft of new features and the main game loop is finally starting to take shape. In it’s current form customers (mostly peasants) come at random intervals to order items (also random). The player can immediately start working on items or alternatively queue some orders up and begin crafting at a time of their choosing. Crafting depletes inventory and customers return to collect items once completed, rewarding the player with money and XP.
The majority of work this month has gone into the UI. They aren’t so much hard to write, just a little tedious and have lots of tiny little details that are easily overlooked. The game is a little UI heavy given the management sim features and getting this all in as early as possible has started to pay dividends.
The game now has a HUD displaying the players currently level and progress, along with some icons for orders, inventory, fatigue and financials.
The new crafting dialog features a drag and drop interface, progress bar and success/failure depending on the item difficulty and the players current level of expertise. I’m going to be introducing energy expenditure shortly as well as managing the fire temperature, all which will have an affect on the resulting item. In the current state it’s fairly likely that the crafting is successful, I’m planning on tweaking it more once I have a more refined game loop.
Artwork for the different kinds of resources used in crafting items is now in. This removed a blocker with the inventory management and with all the backend work I had done previously, it just kinda worked and was fairly simple to complete. There currently isn’t a way for the inventory to be replenished, but I’m working on that in the current milestone.
I had planned my milestones so that 0.5 would be the first publicly available alpha-release. I’m just finishing up 0.4, so that isn’t very far around the corner. I’m pretty nervous about getting it into the hands of other people, but think it’s really important to do this as early as possible. If the core game mechanic isn’t fun, I’m going to waste months later on. Feedback is really important.
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