Sorry I wasn’t able to update last week. I haven’t really found the time to post since my last update what with the end of my exams and the week I spent at my parents’ for the holidays. Nonetheless, we are getting work done – lots of work done actually. Chris is nearly finished with the enemy AI, and I’ve been working on the menu screens pretty much the whole time. Hopefully, we’ll be able to have a feature-complete build done within the
I’ll be honest with you guys – we’ve been holding back. There’s a lot of stuff which we’re planning for Aetherpunk which we haven’t really revealled yet. A lot of these things, you can see in the features list on Aetherpunk’s page (which I should really update by the way). The most salient of these features is probably the Skill System, which I’ll explain for you all today:
Aetherpunk’s skill system will be a lot like Master of Fortresses’ Campaign Honours system. Like Campaign Honours, Skills will be earned through skillful (or simply dedicated) play, as part of a clever plan to get players coming back for more instead of just playing through the whole thing once. Doing certain things (like killing enemies) will give you experience, which can be used to buy skills from a five tier tree with fifteen skills in total. You can kind of get an idea of what that skill tree will look like with the image up top (It’s just a mockup, I swear, the final version will be much prettier), where the player can progress from your tier one “Basic Readiness” skill (as in, ‘Oh! You learned which end of the gun the bullets come out of! Good for you!’) to more specialized and powerful proficiencies.
At about tier three, skills effectively branch into two seperate categories. The first is the continuation of your tier one and two skills, learning how to specialize in particular weapons and getting better at their use, unimaginatively dubbed ‘training skills’. On the other hand, there are also ‘gadgeteering skills’, which gives your character useful gadgets like a targeting monocle (stylish!) or a machine which makes bullets inside a gun (no more reloading!). By creating a branching skill tree and allowing the player to choose which skill to buy, we hope to give the player additional choice over his persistent skill buffs which didn’t exist in MoF. We’re keeping the actual number of skills relatively small so we won’t have to balance a bajillion possible game-breakers (like in MoF), but hopefully, the added thought we put into each skill and the element of choice will make the skill tree a marked improvement over MoF’s system.
More stuff next week, as usual.