Dev Diary 54 - Blood


This tenday brought a lot of handy updates. The most important, I finally fixed quick world reloading, and now you don’t have to relaunch the game when you to load or start a new run, haha! This also allowed me to fix some issues related to Replay Last Turn functionality and to implement the long-awaited undo button (which resets the state to the beginning of the turn). Due to unforgiving spell effects and combinations, where one little mistake might ruin everything (yes, this is intended), the game has become much more fun with “undo”. At first, Thinking of limiting it, like Into The Breach does, but I see no reason to do this without such cool narrative tricks like in Into The Breach, and now I find myself using it a lot (didn’t try with playtesters yet). Anyway, player turn in Colossal Citadels is more like “a planning stage”, even though you can see applied abilities.

Here how “Revert Turn” looks now:

From other cool things, I juiced up battles, even more, tweaking attack particles a bit, and adding variable blood color to different species. This is also a groundwork towards procedural species functionality that will make each village tribe you encounter look completely different (with different body shapes, quirks, hairstyles, etc). Procedural species is also a base of the Farlanders faction.

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It will be an unique faction because it literally means that it’s a faction that nobody has encountered yet - it came from a very far away land of The Infinite Ocean, and the player will discover its appearance, stats, and quirks only on the start of the game. Kind of like random fighter selection in fighting games! But here the species will be composed of a subset of all starting quirks. There are a lot, so this will be quite hard to balance, but this is not a threat for such a cool thing!

Also, I’m continuing to try to rebalance the game in favor of making abilities more important and melee battles more forgiving. 50% melee damage cut was definitely too big, but -33% feels just right so far. Now the player has more gems at the start, meaning that he can get more abilities immediately. To quickly see all available options, I felt like it needed a special menu, listing all creatures abilities. Here it is (at left). Also, check out new icons!

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One more awaited feature was implemented: ability knowledge. Now, all creatures can’t get any random spell from gems or from leveling up at any time. It doesn’t much any sense when your human-worker expedition starts throwing fireballs suddenly. Now, they only have only “physical” abilities at the beginning, like throwing a torch to start a fire, or throwing a nail bomb. So far, I added 12 new abilities!

What about getting more advanced abilities (like using stones flying somewhere very high as a weapon of mass destruction)? You can add them to your faction’s knowledge by doing everything: discovering a pyromancer school, learning a specific understanding, mining crystals. Then, they will start to appear in your creatures' learnable abilities.

One more thing: tessellation, which is a GPU feature used on grass, wasn’t doing very well on old GPUs like GTX650 and lower. Grass takes 0 FPS on more modern ones, and 10+ on older ones. And I really didn’t like how it looked without grass at all - it SHOULD appear soft and alive. So I made a lower graphics settings option for grass, which should make it run instantly too. See the comparison:

Thank you for reading all of that! Here is the full changelog:

  • better action zone behaviour
    • houses are now added to your action range
    • houses extend action range
    • so if one of your creatures is within an empty town, all houses are added to action range
  • now movement orders make less difference on creatures that are already engaged in battle
  • new blood particles
    • variable blood color - every species has now its own now
  • balancing
    • -50% to all damage was too much. -33% seems to feel better
    • now you have 6 elemental gems at the start instead of 1, meaning that you can have a selection of abilities immediately
  • now player’s faction doesn’t know about all spells by default - at start, creatures can only come up with non-magic abilities
  • encountering structures like pyromancer school adds possible spells
  • new content
    • 12 new spells, including decent starting “non-magic spells”
  • new menu available in group’s action bar: spells list that shows all available and learnable abilities
  • UI improvements
    • updated icons for many spells
  • health doesn’t regenerate now if the creature was damaged or attacked
  • reloading game is fixed now! The player can now load and restart the game without quitting it
  • replay button now works
  • revert turn button, which resets game state to the beginning of the turn
  • cool animation and sound when pressing replay and revert button
  • improved camera behaviour
    • middle mouse look now behaves more stable
    • middle mouse button now peeks strategic view
  • quicksave on F5
  • bugfixes