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City of the Shroud - Funded on Kickstarter in 9 Days!

Discussion in 'Works In Progress' started by Shibukun, Oct 2, 2015.

  1. Shibukun

    Shibukun

    Joined:
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    City of the Shroud™ is a tactical fighting RPG where battles unfold in real-time, and every single player influences a live story campaign.

    City of the Shroud™ combines deeply tactical gameplay with the on-your-toes action of a fighting game; your battles unfold in real-time, and your decisions influence an evolving, community-driven story campaign. Can you save Iskendrun from itself, or will you doom the city to annihilation?

    We were also recently featured on Kotaku UK's 51 British Games to Look Forward to in 2016!



    Back Us on Kickstarter: www.abyssalarts.com/kickstarter

    Vote for Us on Steam Greenlight: www.abyssalarts.com/greenlight

    City of the Shroud is a tactical RPG inspired by the gameplay of titles like Final Fantasy Tactics and Fire Emblem, but with an added twist of Street Fighter. Combat uses a unique real-time tactical fighting system where you unleash special moves, build powerful combos, and outmaneuver your opponent.



    The story is a new approach to video game narrative: a live, episodic campaign where every player's actions impact how the story unfolds for the entire community. Each episode is crafted based on the cumulative effect of every player's actions by our resident novelist Moira Katson, author of The Light & Shadow Trilogy as well as other stories and novels. Moira has topped the Amazon Fantasy download charts 3 times since making her debut only a couple of years ago.



    As the story moves towards its conclusion, the stakes will grow higher and higher as you are forced to make choices that will shake Iskendrun to its very core - and permanently affect the direction of the story.

    Nothing is decided - your choices and actions will drive the story and, together, we will tell the tale of the City of the Shroud.

    FEATURES
      • Brand-new type of tactical gameplay using our real-time tactical fighting system
      • New approach to interactive fiction based on your and every other player's actions, and written by Moira Katson, a chart-topping independent author (#1 downloaded title on Amazon Fantasy 3 times)
      • Single player, episodic campaign with fierce AI battles
      • Online PVP multiplayer
      • Deep combo and stat system lets you customize your character to suit your playstyle
      • Customize your character’s appearance through mod support
      • A distinctive world, beautifully realized in 2D and 3D


    The latest version for Windows and Mac can be downloaded here:

    gameplay screenshot.jpg mage screenshot small.png Brute Screenshot Small.png
     

    Attached Files:

    Last edited: Feb 2, 2016
    Kona and nasos_333 like this.
  2. Shibukun

    Shibukun

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    If anyone is going to be at PlayExpo this weekend, we'll have a demo there and would love to hear what you think!
     
  3. Shibukun

    Shibukun

    Joined:
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    We've updated City of the Shroud to version 0.0.1!

    We had a great showing at PlayExpo, with a lot of interest in the game plus fantastic feedback from users. We're hard at work improving the game based on everything we learned at the show, but in the meantime we've updated the game to the same content as the expo version. If you have a moment, please check it out and let us know what you think!

    On a side note, seeing kids having a blast with your game is an amazing feeling, and watching parents and kids have fun playing together on what is most definitely *not* a kid-focused game is really rewarding. It makes me smile even as I write this...

    Any-who, the latest version is available here:

    http://abyssal-arts.itch.io/city-of-the-shroud

    We'd love to hear feedback on how it plays!

    Here are the changes we've made to it:

    Version 0.0.1 Updates
    :
    • Slowed down game speed by 50%
    • Added hit-stuns so that characters are briefly stunned upon taking damage
    • Added a victory animation for the Brute (other classes are currently being worked on)
    • Game now prompts first-time players to use the tutorial
    • Various improvements to the tutorial
    • Brute punches alternate between right and left when doing basic attacks
    • Range indicator is now more clear
      • Bug: Fantastic quality settings make particle effects faint and hard to see
    • Tiles with an enemy on them turn red when in range
    • Made the Team menu lighting less bright
    • Health bars now show how much damage an attack did and then slowly collapse to the new HP level (like in a fighting game)
      • The color of the bar representing the damage corresponds to the type of damage dealt:
        • Red: Power (Wild Swing, etc.)
        • Blue: Magic (Devastation, etc.)
        • Yellow: Quick (Snipe, etc.)
    • Character UI also flashes when taking damage
    • Character portraits don't disappear when a character is defeated anymore; instead, they get a big, red X over them!
    • Added a small outline to the UI underneath characters to make it easier to see
    • You can now cancel out of waiting for an online opponent
    • Bug Fix: UI underneath characters now disappears when a character is defeated
    • Bug Fix: The game saves team makeup properly now
     
  4. Shibukun

    Shibukun

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    We’re happy to announce version 0.0.2 of City of the Shroud, our real-time tactical brawling RPG, is available for download!

    We've made a bunch of UI, readability, and gameplay tweaks! Grab the latest version from the links below and let us know what you think!

    itch.io: http://abyssal-arts.itch.io/city-of-the-shroud
    GameJolt: http://gamejolt.com/games/city-of-the-shroud/86902

    Here's a neat little screen grab of the updated combat input wheel:



    0.0.2 Patch Notes

    • Updated the AI based on player feedback
    • Switched to tile-based selection - instead of clicking the character model to attack, players click the tile on which the opponent is standing
    • Tab key now cycles the selected character
    • Moving the cursor over an enemy tile that’s in-range animates and highlights that tile
    • Moving the cursor over an ally’s tile animates and highlights that tile
    • Added a (text) reminder that characters move instantly using Right-Click - we’ll, uh, make it pretty later
    • Battle pop-up text is now easier to read, performs better; still placeholder as all get-out
    • Magnetic Mines now show the team color of the character who placed it
    • Magnetic Mines now appear on the porch instead of hidden inside of it
    • Changed Void’s tile Corruption effect so that it no longer stacks
    • Updated tutorial text in the hopes of making the link gems easier to understand
    • Changed combo queue UI to be more noticeable and consistent with the character AP gauges
    • If player tries to make input when they don’t have enough AP, the currently-filling block will flash red and a sound effect will play
    • Characters now flash more prominently - white when attacked, yellow when AP is full, red when low on health
    • The white destination bubble for link gem icons now shows a faint, pulsing version of the icon
    • Updated the test combo wheel in the Details menu to be the same as the new in-battle version
    • Added an outline to AP cost number for special attacks in the combo wheel
    • The team UI for the player is now on the left instead of the right
    • Added numbers next to characters in the team UI that correspond to their keyboard selection shortcut
    • Added outlines to the individual AP chunks in characters’ AP bars
    • Added outlines to each character’s HP bars
    • Changed color of AP bars to be less brown
    • Other minor UI tweaks


    Phew! That… that’s a lot of adjustments. And we’ve got something extra big planned for 0.0.3, so please stay tuned!
     
  5. Shibukun

    Shibukun

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    We’re happy to announce version 0.0.3 of City of the Shroud is now available for download! Grab it here:





    Do… do you hear that? Is that an… overture? Like, a theme song? For the game? … ??

    Yes, indeed it is! Feast your ears on City of the Shroud’s Overture, as created by the ever-talented Chris J. Nairn - try not to get this song stuck in your head!




    Also in this latest build, we’ve done a complete overhaul of the UI for inputting attacks, and we’re really happy with how it’s turn out. Hopefully, you will be too!

    We knew that overlapping icons and unclear relations between input and activating special abilities was causing confusion for players, and we wanted to do something about it. Witness the latest iteration of the Combo Wheel:





    Now, icons will never overlap, and you can see the exact order in which you started activating them, from out to in. Icons will clearly show you where they want to go, and you can compare all of the options for your combo at a glance.

    Of course, you can move faster than the wheel’s animations if you know what you want to do as soon as you open it up!

    There are a bunch more under-the-hood changes, including fixes to a bug that prevented the Combo Wheel from opening in the tutorial, but I’ll let the patch notes summarize all of that for you:


    0.0.3 Patch Notes

    • City of the Shroud Overture now plays on the title screen!

    • Overhauled the Combo Wheel UI

    • Added outlines and highlights to a bunch of the UI to make it more apparent on-screen

    • Player names will no longer overflow out of their box

    • Fixed bug where the Combo Wheel wouldn’t open in the Tutorial (we hope!)

    • Updated the language in the tutorial and other places in the UI to make it a bit more clear what everything means/does

    • Updated our bug reporting system - fingers crossed this solves the issue with holding down click to type…

    It’s a short but impactful list! Try out the latest version of the game and let us know what you think!
     
  6. Shibukun

    Shibukun

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  7. Shibukun

    Shibukun

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    We’ve been working the last few weeks on some features that we’ve wanted for a long time now - character customization support (i.e., appearance modding) and tiles that grant effects.

    It’s still early, so we’re using some hastily assembled programmer art and a testing-purposes-only user interface. That is still enough for me to create horrifically ugly characters, which is my specialty:



    Right now, these are just palette swap models but our ideal setup would allow full replacement of each 3D component model, preferably with color masks for the different pieces of each asset plus color sliders to really allow people to go nuts. I will of course use that to create horrifying monstrosities of art, but there is the potential for goodness buried in there too.

    We’re also experimenting with a different way of showing tiles on the map - having a semi-transparent overlay was not the most efficient display method and meant that our map had a grey hue over it. Instead, we’re seeing what using markers in the corners of the tiles looks like:



    It’s still early (lots of little visual bugs) and will need a beauty pass, but it seems like a better direction to go in. We’ll have to update the movement and attack range displays soon as well (they’re doing the previous iteration’s ‘cover the tile’ thing).

    Also in there are some placeholder, sparkly particle effects showing where are our latest gameplay tweak is: tiles that grant bonuses. In the map right now, these just grant +4 Action Points to whoever gets there first, but we can easily add all sorts of options; we’ve currently got damage bonuses, defense bonuses, AP regen bonuses, healing, and Falling To Your Death. The tech is also expandable to AOE abilities and more.

    Here's what that looks like in action:



    In introducing these effects, we want to address the ‘first-mover disadvantage’ where the best strategy was to stay back and wait. We also wanted to incentivize players to take quick and decisive action and to make the start of battles faster, giving a bit more tension to getting out and ahead of your opponent.

    So far, they feel pretty good. It’s simple, but it gives players an immediate goal beyond waiting to see what your opponent does. With time and tuning, hopefully they’ll prove to be a fun and engaging mechanic.
     
  8. Shibukun

    Shibukun

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    This has been an exciting few weeks for us; first, City of the Shroud has been selected for the Indie Zone at Insomnia 56! If you're going to be at the show, come by to see us! I'll be giving out stickers :D

    Also, I'm happy to announce version 0.0.4 of City of the Shroud is now available for download! Grab it here:

    Itch.io: http://abyssal-arts.itch.io/city-of-the-shroud
    GameJolt: http://gamejolt.com/games/city-of-the-shroud/86902

    A good deal of this month was spent preparing for upcoming features (see previous post). A lot of them won’t be visible for a little while, but we’ll soon be able to start showing you all the cool stuff that the game will support in the final release!

    In the meantime, we've put in a bunch of new toys for you to play with. First, we added a full set of new abilities for each character class. They really change the way each plays. You can even adjust each character's loadout, so you can find a setup that works for you.



    We're also working on the tech to support customizing your character's appearance. While all characters currently support it, only the Brute is customizeable at the moment - there are a bunch of palette swaps for him - let your creative spirit soar!

    We've also added lots of little improvements thoughout to improve the experience, and we've got more coming! We hope you like the build!


    0.0.4 Patch Notes
    • Added a new main menu to the game
    • Added a new set of abilities for all 3 classes
    • Added ability to customize ability load-out for all 3 classes (go to Party > Customize)
    • Added character customization tech (only Brute palette swaps currently available)
    • Improved game synchronization in online play
    • Added tech for tiles that grant bonuses and power-ups; try out the AP-granting tiles in the market level
    • Changed the appearance of tiles in the map - now there are + symbols in the corners to identify boundaries and the ground is no longer grey
    • You can now log in and log out of your account from the pause menu
    • Updated audio solution to allow transitions between tracks
    • Mousing over a character highlights their UI portrait
    • Lots and lots of under-the-hood tech implementations… more info coming soon…
     
  9. Shibukun

    Shibukun

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    We’re happy to announce version 0.0.5 of City of the Shroud is now available for download! Grab it here:

    Itch.io: http://abyssal-arts.itch.io/city-of-the-shroud
    GameJolt: http://gamejolt.com/games/city-of-the-shroud/86902

    Scroll down for patch notes!


    We had a great showing at Insomnia 56 in Birmingham from December 11-14. The feedback from players was tremendously positive. We got fan mail (!!!) and people are also really enthusiastic about our community-driven story, which is encouraging. Being a bit of a niche product, it is always reassuring to see the game ‘click’ with users.
    We did learn a lot about how players are viewing and interacting with the combo wheel UI system. Contrast, movement, subtle directions - all of these things are playing a role in how people are using the wheel, and being able to see this up-close was extremely valuable. Our latest updates include the UI changes we developed in response to what we saw!

    Following Insomnia, we set about updating the game with some things we’ve had in the works for a while, namely our real set of Mage animations and an updated game camera. We’ve also added several new features, listed below:

    Patch 0.0.5 Notes:
    • New Mage animations!
    • Special attack gems now use moving arrows to show you where to move the mouse next
    • Draw order for gems now keeps the first activated gem on top
    • Camera now rotates to a higher angle when characters are bunched together
    • We now have persistent player inventory, and items can be awarded from quests
    • Equip items to change your character stats!
    • Performance enhancements!
    • Saved games are now stored in our cloud backend, so they will be portable across platforms
    • Tiles that grant bonuses are now green so it’s clear that it’s good to stand on them
    • Corrupted tiles now have solid visual effects on them to be more obvious that you should not stand there

    Did you notice the bit about player inventories? Just to geek out for a moment here, that means we have the fundamentals of our equipment system in and working! As the game gets built, more gems that have more dramatic stat effects will be introduced, so you can enhance and alter your characters to behave the way you want.

    With that, it is time to eat cookies and take a short holiday. We'll be kicking off the new year with some fun news, so keep an eye out!
     
  10. Shibukun

    Shibukun

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    City of the Shroud is coming to Kickstarter and Steam Greenlight on February 2nd!



    We are launching both campaigns on February 2nd. Please consider backing us and voting for us on Greenlight!

    During the campaign, we’ll be running our first-ever live community-driven story. Anyone who backs the game will get access to a 4-part story set in Iskendrun before the events of City of the Shroud. This means that, each week, we will look at players’ decisions and write the next part of the story, then update the game for our backers. Backing will be the only way to experience AND influence the story, so backing early will be encouraged



    We’ve also launched a Thunderclap campaign to help get the message out when we go live, and it's currently only 1 member away from success with nearly 200k social reach (we're pretty happy about it). Link: https://www.thunderclap.it/projects/36408-kickstart-city-of-the-shroud?locale=en!

    Now, some more details about that Kickstarter! Here are the details of what we’ll be doing:

    Why: primarily to fund the remaining art production, but also to cover some staff salaries and business expenses (legal stuff, etc.).
    Funding Goal: $45,000 USD
    Platforms: Windows and OS X (we are approved for PlayStation development…)
    Duration: 30 days (February 2 - March 2)

    Some of the rewards we’ll be offering include an original short story collection by our author (who hit #1 on Amazon Fantasy downloads 3 times as an indie novelist), the opportunity to appear in a quest, designing a map to fight on, access to our character appearance modding system before anyone else, and a “making-of” book that will talk about the process of making the game (like an art book + production journal), to name a few.

    All the rewards (and any stretch goals) will be focused on the game - we want to make City of the Shroud as quickly and to as high a quality as we can. We decided to forego physical rewards due to the strain it would place on the team, but if there is enough demand, we will look into putting something special together.

    Thoughts? Opinions? Any and all feedback is appreciated! orz



    We also went ahead and updated the game to version 0.0.6, which you can download here:

    itch.io: http://abyssal-arts.itch.io/city-of-the-shroud
    GameJolt: http://gamejolt.com/games/city-of-the-shroud/86902
    indieDB: http://www.indiedb.com/members/shibusuke/downloads

    0.0.6 Patch Notes:
    • New and improved tutorial! Give it a whirl!
    • Initial implementation of the equipment system! You can now equip gems to your characters to enhance and alter their stats.
    • More on-screen gameplay reminders during combat
    • Gems now have their names and cost displayed underneath them before starting a combo
    • Combo Wheel now has a big, prominent cancel zone
    • Combo Wheel now turns grey once the player has used all 7 AP slots (you can't do any more than that!)


    Last little note, we got featured on the front page of indieDB at the beginning of this month, which was pretty exciting. We went up to #21 for a few hours. I don't know if it will make any difference in the long run, but it was nice to know people were looking at our game.
     
  11. Shibukun

    Shibukun

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    We’re excited to announce the launch of City of the Shroud’s Kickstarter and Steam Greenlight campaigns as well as our first-ever trailer! We've also released a new build of the game AND got featured on Kotaku UK - it's been a busy month.



    Watch the Kickstarter/Greenlight Trailer

    Back Us on Kickstarter: www.abyssalarts.com/kickstarter

    Vote for Us on Steam Greenlight: www.abyssalarts.com/greenlight

    City of the Shroud's first trailer is now live, and we’re also releasing a community-driven story preview, available now exclusively for Kickstarter backers.




    During the Kickstarter, we'll be running a 4-part mini-story that will play out over the course of the campaign (new episodes released every 7~10 days). Backers will get exclusive access to the story and the ability to influence it - their choices, along with every other players’, will drive the story in each episode over the month in a live campaign written by chart-topping author Moira Katson.

    Combat in City of the Shroud uses a real-time tactical fighting system where you unleash special moves, build powerful combos, and outmaneuver your opponent in a format with incredible depth but that is easy enough to play with one hand.

    The story in City of the Shroud is a new approach to video game narrative: a live, episodic campaign where every player's actions impact how the story unfolds for the entire community. Each episode is crafted based on the cumulative effects of every player's actions by our resident novelist Moira Katson, author of The Light & Shadow Trilogy as well as other stories and novels. Moira has topped the Amazon Fantasy download charts 3 times since making her debut only a couple of years ago.




    Back us early in order to make your impact known - don’t miss your chance to influence an episode!

    Here are the important links:
    You can get the latest build (0.0.8) straight from any of these sites:
    Thank you to everyone who’s supported us in getting this far, and please back our game - we can make this happen!
     

    Attached Files:

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  12. Shibukun

    Shibukun

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    The second episode in the backer-exclusive story is now live! When backers played the story this past week, they were driving change in the game world. Their choices of whom to support have been felt, and the plot is responding…



    We’ve updated the game to 0.0.9 and added a new stage for you to try, pictured above! Checkwww.abyssalarts.com for patch notes.

    Episode 1 has already revealed a crack in the alliance between Zem and Azura. Bound by pragmatism and a shared appreciation of the other’s ruthlessness, their unity has nonetheless been shaken by this theft. Zem, known for her capriciousness, must answer to a city that has judged her guilty - and as her allies flock to Azura and Navid, she must make new alliances, and fast. Meanwhile, as Navid gains power, he seeks to wreak vengeance on the woman he holds responsible for his city’s downfall. But Azura is a dangerous enemy to have…

    Here's what that looks like:



    All that from one week - now imagine how much more we can do in the full game.

    When this campaign started, the three factions in the exclusive story were equal. Zem, Azura, and Navid had the same amount of influence in Iskendrun, and alliances were in place. Zem and Azura, being connected through trade and having similar personalities, got along well, while Navid despises both of them: Zem for her corrupting influence, and what he views to be a willful ignorance of Iskendrun’s needs, and Azura for what he views as greed and a lack of sympathy for those less fortunate. Navid, in turn, is disliked by Azura and Zem for his pretentiousness and his claims of piety while he acts without morals when no one is looking.

    After saving the Hat Merchant from a loitering Brute and his Gunner friend, players' choices of ally began to ripple through the city. Some chose Navid, some chose Zem, and others chose Azura; this resulted in a change in the balance of power. If you play episode 2, you’ll see the effect this has on the city, and your quest...
    This is really exciting - we would not have predicted that events would develop this way at all. Azura, mistrusting an ally; Zem, believing in someone who may no longer hold her interest at heart; and Navid, presented with an opportunity to damage someone he wants gone from the city.

    This preview is a small sample of what we can do in the final game, but hopefully you see what sort of influence your choices have on the city, no matter how small they may seem...

    Back us on Kickstarter to get access to the backer-exclusive campaign!

    And please vote for us on Steam Greenlight!
     
  13. Shibukun

    Shibukun

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    We've released Episode 3 of our backer-exclusive story preview and updated the game to 0.0.10! You can download the latest build (and the latest episode if you're a backer!) here:




    In the latest episode, Zem’s influence continues to wane, placing in her a precarious position: Azura and Navid are vying for power, and Zem no longer has Azura’s trust. However, Zem is most dangerous when she is desperate, so what does this mean for the city and its people?

    0.0.10 Patch Notes
    • Episode 3 now playing! (Must have backed Kickstarter to access)
    • New abilities and stat gems accessible
    • You can now make the Mage purple because it's awesome
    • The Gunner also has an alternate color scheme
    • General bug fixes and improvements
     
  14. Shibukun

    Shibukun

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    We were Greenlit in just 3 weeks! Thank you everyone who voted!!

    We just released the final episode of the Kickstarter preview campaign, along with our first-ever boss fight, which you can download here! See the story through to its conclusion (if you backed the campaign) and get a sneak peek at what’s coming in the main game.



    We’ve also added some cool new features: controller support and New Game+!

    The controller support is still early, but we're hoping some of you intrepid players will send us your feedback on how to improve it! That said, it feels pretty good for an initial implementation.

    With New Game+, backers can go back and replay the preview campaign against a much stronger, smarter set of opponents. Of course, they get to keep all their stat gems and abilities, so they should be able to eke out a victory with practice…



    Another bit of exciting news: City of the Shroud is going to EGX Rezzed in April! I went last year to help a friend out with their booth, which you can read about here if you’re interested. It’s exciting to think that just one year later we’d be showing our own game along companies like Vlambeer and Creative Assembly.

    We’ll be there with the latest build of the game, postcards with some sweet artwork on them, and information about our new Kickstarter. Let us know if you’re coming by so we can say hi in person!

    0.0.11 Patch Notes
    • Episode 4 is now available (Must have backed Kickstarter to access)
    • Boss fight!
    • New Game+: If you finished the preview campaign, you can now go back and play it again against stronger and smarter opponents - plus, you get to keep your items!
    • New abilities and stat gems accessible
    • Controller support: you can now play the game with a controller - send feedback!!!
    • General bug fixes and improvements
    Download the latest version here: Indiedb.com
     
  15. Shibukun

    Shibukun

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    We were funded on Kickstarter in 9 days! We learned a lot on our first attempt, and that knowledge combined with the support of our (new/bigger) community let us hit our goal in a very short period of time.

    Our Kickstarter page is here: https://www.kickstarter.com/projects...-of-the-shroud



    We took City of the Shroud to EGX Rezzed, where it had a really good showing. Players backed the game on the spot, then told their friends to come play the demo and do the same.

    Our Steam page is also set up and live! You can check it out here (feedback appreciated): http://store.steampowered.com//app/449100

    The prototype has also been updated to version 0.0.12; you can grab it here:


    Here are the patch notes:

    0.0.12 Patch Notes

    • Reworked nearly all the under-the-hood login stuff - with any luck, this will stop the bug where new players couldn’t use the UI on their first time opening the game (eesh)
    • Overall menu system should be working better and have a more uniform appearance
    • Minor difficulty adjustments to a couple of encounters in the story preview
    • Tutorial wording has been adjusted for clarity
    • Fixed a visual bug with the Mage’s staff
    • Water should now appear in the Docks stage on Fast settings
    • Quest tracker visuals should work better
     
  16. frosted

    frosted

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    This looks great! Strange that nobody has commented yet - I wonder if it's just too successful already. ;D

    Do you have any straight game play video unedited?

    Are you a solo effort or a team?

    The art is really unique and the UI just looks fantastic. Really high quality work here.
     
  17. Shibukun

    Shibukun

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    Thank you for the reply - I've waited so long T.T I hope people aren't put off by how it looks, we're so indie it hurts :p

    Here's a video of unedited battle footage from about 5 versions ago - generally gameplay is still the same, so it's mostly visuals and under-the-hood stuff that's been updated:



    We're a team - there are a couple of us who were/are on the game full-time, and everyone else contributes their specialties as needed. We also work with a few local artists and friends who help us with models, UI, etc.

    The plan is currently to revise the UI art (same mechanics, better images) and then dive in to creating the final layout for all our menus. I've got some ideas but am not quite settled on the direction...

    If you check out the demo, I'd love to hear what you think :D
     
  18. frosted

    frosted

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    3,807
    I've actually been working on some similar games for a while. So I'll definitely be checking out your demo when I get a chance. I think the lack of responses might actually be because of the non-indie level of your work. It's clear that you guys know what you're doing and this isn't your first rodeo.

    The video is a little confusing - the attack chart - is that like a timing based attack powerup?
     
  19. Shibukun

    Shibukun

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    That's a very nice compliment, though now I'm scared...

    Anyway, the 'combo wheel' makes more sense once you get your hands on it - if you ever played Legend of Legaia, it's similar to that system. Each character has a set of special attacks that you equip, and each attack requires a specific input to activate. The inputs overlap, so you can 'combo' your special attacks together to deal huge damage quickly and efficiently.

    The critical element is that the game is in real time but uses stamina ('Action Points') to create pseudo-turns. So if you have 5 AP and have equipped a 2-input move and a 4-input move that overlap, you can activate both even though your AP total isn't high enough to use them separately.

    The game is designed to have a 'think on your feet' feel to it, but the key to victory is in patience and reading the best time to strike. We're basically trying to make a strategy game that feels like an action game (where strategy is still primary).

    Phew! So, short version: it's an input system for comboing attacks together!
     
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  20. _M_S_D_

    _M_S_D_

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    Just saw this now and wanted to say I'm very impressed. :D Looks great. Will be looking into testing it eventually. :)
     
  21. Shibukun

    Shibukun

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    Awesome, thank you very much! Would love to hear what you think when you get a chance to try it out :D
     
  22. frosted

    frosted

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    I tried the demo out. I really loved the dialog. Pitch perfect stuff. I personally didn't really understand the combo wheel or what was happening out of turn (despite being trained).

    The dialog and art is so good it almost doesn't matter that I didn't understand the mechanics.
     
  23. Shibukun

    Shibukun

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    Haha, thank you - our artist and writer will be thrilled! Though that means we need to work on presenting the mechanics :p

    We did update the tutorial mission for a couple of game shows we took it to recently, and the new version seemed to do a lot better job of teaching people. The #1 piece of feedback we're getting now is asking for a more gradual on-ramp for introducing the game and how it works, which we're working in to our structure, so over time we should be able to improve it!
     
  24. frosted

    frosted

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    The big question for me with the combo wheel was like "what do those empty boxes do?"
    "why do the open spaces slowly open up?"

    I think the problem is that there's a big delay between setting the move up and the execution (like 2 seconds or more).

    The best way to make it entirely clear, would be if the moves were executed as you moved the mouse around the combo wheel, so the feedback was immediate and you could really see what you're doing.

    That may just not work at all if I just totally misunderstand how it works! But I thought I'd throw it out there.
     
  25. Shibukun

    Shibukun

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    That sounds like 2 things are happening to make it confusing - the first is a visual bug (that I hate with a passion) where panels that can/cannot be activated don't highlight properly (sometimes they highlight, sometimes they don't - it's totally random what happens). The second is the stamina system preventing you from doing the move right away - if the bar isn't charged enough on the side to accept the input, it forces you to 'wait' until you have enough.

    When the panels aren't highlighting properly to tell you that you can/can't activate the panel AND you're being introduced to stamina, which in the current UI is not communicated super-well, it gets extra confusing.

    Here's the UI update we're working on:



    The bar on the right is your stamina - if the block isn't full, all panels other than the one you've currently activated should be grey. If you have enough (like in the screenshot), they'll all light up and you can proceed with the move. The character in the screenshot has full stamina (7 Action Points), so the player can activate the final 'up' input on Wild Swing, and the panels are lit up to show that you can make that input.

    One suggestion we got that I want to implement is: if you don't have enough stamina for the next move, that white line showing you where to go will be hollow and slowly fill up to show how much longer you have until you get your next block of stamina. That way, you can see how long you'll have to wait to activate the next input at a glance.
     
  26. frosted

    frosted

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    Explaining novel mechanics is the hardest of hard work.

    I'm definitely gonna follow the thread and see where you guys take this.
     
  27. Shibukun

    Shibukun

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    Thank you! We're going to do our best to make it as intuitive as possible... wish us luck :p
     
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  28. frosted

    frosted

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    Last suggestion:

    Maybe if when the moves were being executed - the combo box got smaller and moved into a corner - but there was some animation synchronized with the attacks as their executed. This also helps connect the input (player clicking on an attack) to the output (dude making an attack) and might help explain some of it a bit more.

    Maybe my suggestions suck, who knows! Good luck :)
     
  29. Shibukun

    Shibukun

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    There are less than 72 hours remaining on our Kickstarter! We can still unlock New Game+ and Survival Mode if enough people join in and share the campaign!

    If you're interested in the game, now is the time to back! Every backer gets development builds on Steam immediately following the campaign!

    https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/abyssalarts/city-of-the-shroud

     
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  30. sowatnow

    sowatnow

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    Looking good mate. Keep up the good work.
     
  31. Shibukun

    Shibukun

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    Thank you!
     
  32. Shibukun

    Shibukun

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    There's just one hour left in City of the Shroud's Kickstarter campaign!

    We're a new type of tactical game with a story that's driven by the cumulative choices of its players - not exactly common or easy to explain. But over 300 people came together and funded us in 9 days, and we can't wait to get the game out to our players!

    If you happen to see this and are interested in the game, please check us out - last call!

    https://www.kickstarter.com/projects...-of-the-shroud

     
    RavenOfCode likes this.
  33. KheltonHeadley

    KheltonHeadley

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    Love this, looks awesome.
     
  34. Shibukun

    Shibukun

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    Thank you very much!
     
  35. zenGarden

    zenGarden

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    You put lot of work on it, congrats :)
     
  36. Shibukun

    Shibukun

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    We've made some major progress on the art front, so I wanted to share some of the fruits of our labor! We’ve completed the Gunner’s animations and have put them in the game, along with all of her abilities.



    Attacks in CotS use a combination of animation and visual effects to designate each ability during combat. We've pretty much got the Gunner's animations and VFX (placeholder!) set up and ready to go at this point, along with the Brute and Mage classes. Since we have the Gunner’s animations fresh off the… animation software, I’ll run you through some of the new abilities we've added to the game (and some of the ones that make way more sense now).

    Just a note: they’re not all tuned yet, meaning the timing on some of the movement and visual effects may be a bit off, but I figured: why wait?

    Dynamite: throw a stick of dynamite that deals damage to adjacent tiles after a set amount of time. The danger indicator is new too (and placeholder)!



    Buckshot
    : The opposite of Snipe - deal more damage the closer you are to the target. Can be combined with Scramble and Parting Gift, which deals damage to adjacent tiles when you move away, for an in-your-face playstyle.



    Aim Down Sights/Scramble
    : when the Gunner has certain buffs active, like Aim Down Sights or Scramble, she will take on a unique idle animation until the effects wear off.



    Staggering Shot
    : deals damage and removes a dodge buff from the target, dealing bonus damage if it does (dodge buffs negate an opponent’s yellow gem attacks).



    Vault
    : Jump backward one tile and deal damage while you do it! Great for getting out of melee range and making the opponent pay for it while you do. Works well with Magnetic Mine.



    And finally, Spray and Pray: shoot 21 times, spreading the damage across all tiles adjacent to the target.



    We’re really happy with how the animations turned out and can’t wait to let our backers try them out.

    Those of you with keen eyes may notice some slight graphical improvements to the game as well - hopefully you like them.

    We’re about ready to roll out the new character class abilities for testing to our Noble-tier and higher backers! We have a bit of tweaking to do before we do (we want players to be able to just get them instead of having to fight random battles until they drop, for example), so as soon as that’s all ready, we’ll be rolling out a new test branch on Steam. Keep an eye out!

    Last but not least, City of the Shroud will be going to Insomnia 58 from August 26 - 29 at NEC in Birmingham, UK.




    If you’re going, come by and say hi - we’ll have a (hopefully VERY) updated version of the game on display!

    I also want to give a big thank-you to Charlie Ewing, creator of Flow Point, and Liz Henwood of Sock Thuggery for showing City of the Shroud at Games by the Sea at Develop! None of the team proper were able to go to the event this year, but our friends stepped in to help us out. The game went over really well, and “lots of people played it for a really long time,” which of course is a good thing!

    And last thing: we're thinking about setting up a Linux testing build to see if we can add it as an official platform for the Steam release! Wish us luck!
     
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  37. Shibukun

    Shibukun

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    This is a big update! First, we’re taking City of the Shroud to EGX - formerly the Eurogamer Expo - from September 22 - 25! We'll be heading up to the NEC in Birmingham, UK, to show off the game. We’ll be in the Rezzed Zone, so come on down and say hi if you're there!



    But in even more exciting news, we are finally ready to unveil something we’ve been dying to get into your hands for months: the newest addition to CotS’ class roster, the Duelist!



    The Duelist is a martial-arts cowboy… assassin… Basically, she’s awesome:

    “The Duelist is a hybrid strength/dexterity class, and also a hybrid melee/ranged class. Armed with pistols and martial arts, she has abilities to dash in and out of melee, as well as abilities that function differently if your target is in melee or at range. This makes the Duelist a very flexible class, capable of setting the terms of the fight. However, as the name suggests, the Duelist does best when fighting a single target, so you can defeat enemy Duelists by sticking together and ganging up on them.

    When you manage to isolate your target, the Duelist is without question the deadliest class in the game. The core philosophy of the Duelist is that the best defense is a good offense, and if you can get an enemy in a one on one situation you will be able to use your mobility and disruptive offense to make short work of them.

    When building a Duelist, you will have to choose between mobility, disruption, or pure offensive power. Whether you want to focus on staying safe and faking out your opponent while you whittle them down or simply diving in and going for the throat, the Duelist is going to be adept at picking off fragile enemies.”

    Here are some of the moves you’ll unlock for her in the game:

    • Dash: From range, move to the closest available space adjacent to the target. In melee, move to the opposite side of the target. In either case, deal damage to all enemies in your path (if the enemies are lined up, you can use this ability to dash through the entire line, dealing damage to all of them). (Cost: 2)


    • Flashbang: Toss a grenade at the target which explodes after 3 seconds, damagingall characters within 1 tile of the blast and reducing their damage by 50%. (Cost: 3)


    • Quick Shot: Deal bonus damage if you have moved within the past 5 seconds. (Cost: 1)


    • Roundhouse: Damage and knock back all adjacent characters. (Cost: 4)
    Here’s an example of how those tie together:

    • Dash (Move in on target, dealing damage while you do) >
    • Quick Shot (you just moved, let’s use the opportunity!) >
    • Roundhouse (Damage the opponent and get knock them out of range if they’re melee) >
    • Flashbang (Deal damage and reduce their damage - let’s see them try to counterattack!)
    All together, this advanced combo only costs 5 AP, and you’ve closed the distance, hit them 4 times, knocked them out of melee range, and reduced their damage by 50%. The Duelist is fast and dangerous (and is my personal favorite of all the classes)! But don’t worry - the other classes have just as much up their sleeves.

    I also put together a new combat footage video with some Duelist gameplay and our updated UI; give it a gander:



    And if you’re in the UK and are going to EGX, be sure to drop by our booth to say hi!
     
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  38. Shibukun

    Shibukun

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    In anticipation of showing City of the Shroud at Rezzed 2017 in London from March 30 - April 1, we are putting together a new demo to show off not only the newest playable class, but also a boss fight preview from the main campaign!

    The demo will have a bunch of updates:
    • New playable class - the Defender!
    • A preview of a boss battle (in a new environment!) from the main campaign!
    • Updated visual and sound effects!
    • Enhanced visuals and an updated UI!
    So, what does all this look like? Allow me to explain:

    Introducing the Defender


    This is from one of the new environments in the game. Can you guess the setting?

    The Defender is big, intimidating, and tough. Wielding her twin shields, she fights up-close and in the thick of it using a combination of physical power and magic. She can heal her allies (yes, we added healing mechanics!), set up barriers to keep enemies away from her allies, and deal punishing damage with the help of a little Corruption. She is a formidable opponent, and a valuable component for any team!

    Here are a couple of her moves (and see some of the visual effects we’re working on):

    Wave of Corruption
    Input: Up > Left > Down > Left



    The Defender sends out a wave of magic 3 tiles wide that travels to the edge of the map, dealing low damage and adding 3 stacks of corruption to any character it touches (look out for allies!).

    Purify
    Input: Down > Left



    Consumes all Corruption stacks on every character within 1 space of the Defender (including the Defender and her allies) to heal the lowest health ally within 3 spaces. The amount of health restored goes up with each Corruption stack the Defender consumes.

    Shield Bash
    Input: Right > Down



    The Defender smashes the target in the face, dealing damage and stunning them. The ability deals bonus damage and stuns the target for each Block, Dodge, and Disrupt effect they have active.

    The Defender has plenty more tricks up her sleeve, but hopefully this gives you a taste of how to utilize her talents in combat.

    Updated UI
    We’ve also updated the combat UI to its final iteration - we’re really happy with how it’s come together. Check it out:



    We've got plenty more in the works (and I may have hidden a bit of a preview in one of the images), but for now, if you're coming to Rezzed, please swing by and let us know what you think!
     
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