Game Development Preview: Dungeon Ambassador

I’m back from my blogging hiatus, though I can’t promise regular updates just yet.  School is keeping me very busy.  However, I have something that I’ve been wanting to share, so I thought I’d take the time to write a blog on it.

I recently began working on a game using RPG Maker VX Ace.  I realized that my prior project was too ambitious and unmarketable, so I decided to scale back and start a completely new project.  I’ve heard many people complaining that too many video games are built around violence, and to an extent I agree. Therefore, I decided to make a noncombat dungeon crawler, a game that I could still exercise a lot of imagination over without having to boil down every encounter to “kill x enemies.”  I have a lot of ideas splashing around in my head for this game, and I’ve already included a few in the little progress I’ve achieved thus far.

To make this preview, I played through my current build of the game, taking screenshots frequently to provide an adequate understanding of the game.  Unfortunately, I do not have any original art or assets made for the game yet, so I used in-engine assets for the current build.  Original art will be in the finished product, but I’ve decided to prioritize functionality over appearance for now.

Before I get started with the actual preview, if you’re feeling adventurous: 1 2 3

If you want to see the screenshots without reading the preview, go here.

It begins.

You begin the game waking up in a strange boarding house.

That certainly was kind

After a few lines of dialogue, she asks an important question.

At the moment, the difference is only cosmetic.

Male

Female

For now, let’s stick with female.

She asks another important question.

I decided to go with my standard name

Seems like she wants a change of scenery

After she leaves you are free to check around the room.

It’s impolite to use other people’s beds

That’s better

But, if you want to progress, you must head downstairs.

She has a few more things to say.

And you get to the first major decision in the game!

Merchant

Traveler

Outlaw

Awkward

Priest

Regardless of your choice, the town is accepting.

I’ll pause right here to talk about that choice.  Each option provides certain (mostly unimplemented) benefits to the player.  The Merchant currently gives the player 100 Gold to start with and (unimplemented) give him/her a discount at all shops.  The Traveler (unimplemented) can use certain items longer without them breaking.  The Outlaw (partially implemented) gets a free lockpick and can automatically unlock most locks.  The Priest (unimplemented) resists poisons and can heal more efficiently.  This decision will be important later, I’m sure.

I suck at names, part 1

She’s very particular about her beds

Ooh, is that a quest?  But before you can leave, she gives you something they found when they rescued you.

If you try to talk to her again, she’ll remind you of your quest.

Once you’re done talking to her, you’re free to examine your menu.

I know, not very impressive.  It’s just the default RPG Maker menu, except…

This game contains (mostly unimplemented) survival elements!  Script thanks to Apellonyx!  Moving on, if you check out your Items menu, you’ll find the Item Encyclopedia under Key Items!

Activate it to open the Item Encyclopedia!

Script thanks to White Demon!  Moving on from there, you are able to leave the Boarding House and see the beautiful, yet mostly empty town of Sunfield.

Go to your left to find the Town Hall.

See, I told you

Go to the door to proceed inside.

Talk to the mayor to proceed.

He recognizes your gender

If he’s anything like me, he’ll forget your name in five seconds

Dramatic pause

Spooky

Your first quest

Item get

If you talk to him again, he’ll remind you of your mission.

Leave and head right, past the boarding house.

I suck at names 2, the electric boogaloo

The shop is supposed to be highly populated, but, you guessed it, it’s not completely implemented yet!

He looks shifty

But at least the shop part works!

Torch functionality not yet implemented

Let’s buy some lockpicks.  They might come in handy.

Nothing suspicious about buying or selling lockpicks

Continuing right leads to the Outskirts.

I suck at names, part 3

Planting a story seed

The south path is not yet implemented.

But the north path is!

There’s a secret in the left corner.

Have some currently useless stuff

After building up courage, we enter the manor.

You can’t get across just yet.

In the room on the left you find some useful junk.

I’m not sure exactly how you can carry that

Problem solved?

Problem solved.

Ghosts are jerks

It’s not supposed to be lit yet, and it’s not supposed to be blue, but whatever

More puzzle solving.

The next room is mostly unimplemented, but the stairway will lead to the second floor, where later quests will take you.

But the next room (and last so far) is completely implemented!

Huh.

Ghosts, man

Total dicks

This should solve the problem

Wait, why didn’t they all disappear?

Fire trail

Two ghosts down, two to go

All ghosts in the room cleared

But you still can’t reach the chest… right?

Oh hey, the ghost in room 2 is gone

I knew those lockpicks would come in handy

Drat

Let’s try again.

Jackpot

Sorry, it only works once.

Attempting to unlock the chest with an outlaw gives slightly different results.

Since this is an easy chest, Outlaws have a 100% chance of unlocking it!

One last thing.  You can come to the Manor without talking to the mayor, but since you don’t have the Holy Flame, you can only get so far.

And that’s my game, or at least what I have so far!  I’ll post an update once I have the entire first floor done!