Guild Hall Adventures

Hey all, it has been such a long time since I have posted on the forums.
Glad to say that I am back, me alone this time, doing solo development is hard, but yeap lets keep it up.

I have started by making myself a Clicker RPG game, seeing that it is relatively easy to learn and I am using the concept of making a clicker game, but making it a story that can get told while playing the game.

The proof of concept is by having a powerful enemy destroying your town and family and you basically want to put an end to this.
A guild hall symbolizes in my eyes where Heroes meet up and do quests together to fight monsters. But why have a guild hall already?? in this game I am creating the visuals and experience of how you go to a broken land with rubble and disaster and you are going to rebuild everything!!! you are going to use the foundations that was once a thriving town and rebuild it into a City with a Guild Hall in the center where all the heroes and management gets done to make your City thrive even more.

This is all click based though, so no running around unfortunately and no big things. (My skills and time is not on par to get that done)

First the character screen where I had a 2D idea for the game, but then me being able to post about the game became very limited as it looked meh. So it first started out like this and then ended up to be a bit 3D afterwards.
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Once I liked the look and feel of the second bit, I improvised and started making a more done concept of what I wanted.

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The gameplay which would be the clicking part is imagined in 3D point view which is like this :

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And then the story scenes could be where you are either reading what to do next, or just skim through it. It is all up to the player at the end of the day. Previously the story was just a button here and a panel there and with text just ontop of the panel, no visuals, so how does someone promote that?? there is nothing to look at basically, almost like playing a DOS game haha. But then I changed it where you will see who is talking to you.

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I have been busy with basic implementations of how the game plays through, but there is so much coding and unity gameobject drag and drops that needs to happen and screens that needs to be made and then models that needs to be made with some animation here and an animation there. That this small project feels big still, but in the end I will be pushing through.

But one thing that I am finding myself struggling with, is how do I get a following without giving the story away? or some nice aspects of the game? I start with creating myself a youtube channel, which I will post about progress on the daily programming I do , but edit here and there so that I don't give all my secret saucy code away of course.

I can make a gif here and there just like the guy that made "The First Tree" - but the question remains, how do you have enough time if you have been working almost a full week on just implementing code and stuff looking like :

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This can be made looking perfect, when I actually have a nice background of buildings that I have modeled with Blender and added some props with one peasant beating another peasant [hehe] - but ya it takes my time. LOL

I have registered on Steamworks finally. It cost me $100 but meh, needs to happen, did not upload my game yet, as I heard that once you upload your game then they evaluate it for 30 days and in those 30 days you need to get as much wishlists as possible so that after the 30 days you can be featured in "Upcoming Popular Releases" - sooooo now I don't want to upload my game as my following = 0 and the only people that knows a little bit about it is the small twitter following I have created and the South African Game Developers group that I am the admin of.
So how does one go about this? Do I need to dedicate one day to make enough gifs for a week of posting? or enough images for a week of posting? post 2 times a week? is it wise to post on reddit when I gave myself a full 10 months to complete this game?

Main question would be, do I need to make sure my following is 1000 people before uploading to steam, so that the following can support me by wishlisting my game during the 30 days? and should I dedicate the 30 days on just promoting? Because this will mean that I will also need to get my game to a 50% or 70% completion rate so that I have loads to post about.

But yea that was me rambling a bit about marketing crap.

What do you guys think about a clicker RPG? think it would be nice? A person that lost everything and working from nothing to something. From starting with only a stone axe and -> chopping logs -> making a lumberyard -> chopping logs -> making planks -> repairing guild hall -> researching -> combating monsters etc etc :D

Comments

  • edited
    While a lot of people talk about posting regularly on social media because of how various platforms (particularly evil Facebook-owned ones) apparently prioritize posts by accounts that have more activity, the thing that typically makes something really popular (especially on Twitter) is just one or two gifs that show something very clever, very beautiful, very funny, relatable or unusual or otherwise entertaining.

    There's some danger to this, in that when someone sees a really great gif they gets them excited about the game, if they're not seeing gameplay they typically have an idea in their minds of what the gameplay is. They're imagining the best possible version of the game, which might get them disappointed if your actual game isn't what they were hoping for. (You can mitigate this by talking to them and either incorporating their ideas into your game, or managing their expectations.)

    You typically want to think about what it is that makes your game special/unique/interesting, and throw as much energy as you can making that part really great. Letting people be able to play a prototype is great, but that already requires them to be invested. Having really good gif hooks to get them invested in trying it out is important imo, especially when they don't know you.

    I agree with building a fan base before uploading to Steam. I would personally want to have something about my game go viral, already have a significant fan base, or significant numbers of daily downloads on itch, before even considering Steam.
  • So would you recommend making a demo for itch.io for people to play it first? And this is the exact thought process I was thinking. You have to captivate with a gif that would explain something, I have something in mind, but this requires me to be done with more of the modeling aspect and decorating of the game more for me to be able to do this.
    But also I have never played demos before, so ill have to see what is the concept of how much to give the player to play with.

    "I would personally want to have something about my game go viral, already have a significant fan base, or significant numbers of daily downloads on itch"

    - Please give me a link to your game, just so that I can get some ideas on what you are doing. :)
  • edited
    Two itch games that I've been involved with that have been pursued more seriously have been Terra Nil and Second Earth.

    It's not really even about making a "demo" for itch (although functionally I suppose it's kind of that). We literally release the full game that we've made on itch, for free (or pay what you want). If people aren't even going to play the game when you give them the full thing for free then you have pretty much zero chance of making any sales at all when asking them to pay. The idea being that if the numbers prove that there's interest in the game (thousands of downloads, gets picked up by media/streamers), we can polish it further, use feedback from itch players, make it look prettier, add more content, etc., and sell a paid version of those (edit: both in Itch and on Steam or other platforms). It also potentially gets it noticed by publishers, and good stats give you more room to negotiate a better deal (or allow you to make some napkin-maths calculations to more easily walk away from a bad deal). I suppose in that sense it's as much a "demo" for us as developers as it is for players. If the "demo" doesn't give us the numbers we want, maybe we should be spending our resources on another game.
  • I really appreciate this feedback, this will make me look at it from a more different aspect and aim on actually releasing the game for "Free" on itch and see how people judge the game. It can give me a good concept for if the game is going to make it or not. And also im sure it will also point out all the bugs the game might have lying around :P
  • As per @Elyaradine suggestion.
    I have made the game possible to be played on Itch.io while I am working on it. Now anyone can get the current version and play it tell me what they think and if they get any bugs, let me know. Join the discord even and let me know there what you think would be cool in the game etc.

    https://obsessivegames.itch.io/
  • edited
    Looks awesome! Love the concept :) Im looking into something a rebuild similar theme and going through some Brackey videos to start learning :P Good luck!

    I wanted to ask, have you started thinking about your marketing as well?

    Off hand things I can think of are:
    • Making list of curators you respect and would like to review your game on steam
    • Making a list of local (or international but local is easier) blogs/news/social media platforms who would promote your game
    • Starting a website where you can start sharing your steps,thoughts etc (great to build fanbase) and you can also ask use it as a gateway to your steam page,social media profiles etc - Also a great way to build up a email database if you need to send out an email on publication day (the more communication platforms and channels the better)...ps dont spam :P Good solid advice from @Elyaradine

    "I agree with building a fan base before uploading to Steam." ~ Elyaradine

    *This is just me coming from a campaign strategy/online marketing skillset, im sure there are more people who can point you in the right direction in terms of contacts and relationships to pre-emp build
  • No - I am basically asking here what would be good for marketing, I am just thinking about posting it all on youtube and facebook basically until it is 70-90% done then I can start asking youtubers to promote. It also helps with it being on Itch.io so that people can see it so long - but I am also not sure what to limit people on.
  • Ok, so I have constantly been busy with the game and also I opened my own business which is a hiking trail in Gauteng called Out of Africa Adventures so time was minimal. No more times for playing games or watching series....it all just gets used for gamedev & business & website creation & full-time work at the software company I work at.

    Last time I posted anything, it was at about 1st of Aug 2020 in this group.
    Today I am updating you guys with what I have done so far.

    So the game was redesigned to something that I would love playing myself, even if I am the only player that could play this with my friends co-op.

    The game is now a Hack n Slash game, where monsters will spawn all over and come in waves to destroy your town in certain time periods. It is also a RPG driven game that I have written a 3 page story so far with 14 chapters that needs to be given more detail that will be +- 2 page per chapter (just need to find time for that).

    I have redesigned the assets with Synty and done my own setup also got some character models that I also edited a bit with creating my own weapons.

    The main menu looks a bit more appealing now and this is how the game will look as well.

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    After you go into the play screen you will reach the class selection screen.

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    At this current moment my time will allow me to only make the warrior for now, so this is what ill focus on for now, the UI is something that I still want to change, so please dont judge too harshly on the UI, but suggestions would be appreciated.

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    There is numerous things that I have already coded into the game, like a leveling system, enemies spawning, camera, intractability with objects, stat points and skill points.

    There is production that is done in the game and building for buildings.

    How I tested movement in a demo scene with the cursor changing when hover over a object / enemy.

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    I am still trying to get inventory system up and running and saw some cool ideas like this one :

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    So all and all im actually behind schedule on when I wanted to release my demo for the world to see.

    I will try and update everyone here once I am done with a section to find out by any other more experienced artists & game developers on where I can improve. More feedback will make all the change in the world.
  • I'm very late to this because I somehow missed this thread when you originally started it so I don't know how many of those marketing questions are still bouncing around in your head but the blog How To Market A Game has answers to - or at least suggestions for - many of the things you were asking about last year. I'd recommend signing up to the newsletter and going through the blog archives.
    Thanked by 1Sonicay
  • @watman, thank you so much! I will be using this 100%
    Thanked by 1watman
  • Implemented a toolbelt system for the game

    Check the link above with some of the progress that I have done in the game already. Atleast repairing and gathering resources is working as intended.

    I can also start killing enemies now.
    Thanked by 1konman
  • Quick update today.
    What I have completed since last time.

    Character can now produce weapons and armor - can also equip them.

    Questlog is updated and a few quests has been added to the game.

    Level design improved and world UI added which can display a quest UI over an NPC, when you accept the quest it changes, and once it is completed it changes the color again and sprite.

    Saving and loading has been implemented (this was hard HOLY COW) - I used Serializable for this and format binary in unity which writes to the default location on the device - whether it is mobile / pc / w.e

    Created tower and plot of land where the towers are built.

    Created the wave system for when a wave comes to attack the town.

    I will provide images in future updates, it takes so much time to take screenshots of all of these updates. So will make an update soon again with my progress (Fridays!).

    I am also making more projects as I am ahead of my timeline for Guild Hall Adventures with the demo release - want to make a few small projects quickly which is a lot smaller for personal training in game development and providing value for other Studios as I am trying to actively find a Game Developer job at the moment while I am designing and making my games.

    Regarding the demo of Guild Hall Adventures, I am aiming for the end of March, so if I don't do my weekly Friday updates, GIVE ME SHIT ABOUT IT.

    I have been learning so much in this journey so far, this project is huge, but it is fun, I am only doing it part-time, I do my full-time job from 7 to 4 and then 1 hour cleaning up etc, and then from 6ish to 12am I do game development all the way. AI do courses on more game development sneakily at my current job as well (don't tell them please)

    It is hard getting into a studio with no projects fully completed, for all of you searching for a game dev role, and game dev companies don't look at an "in-progress" game as there won't be a demo for them to play.

    But yea the above rabble is not my game-related, but just a brief vent of what the struggles are. I am pretty sure I am not the only one out there that feels like this, but I am still motivated and I am enjoying this so much, game development is just a ray of sunshine tbh. One day soon ill let everyone know when I have eventually got that game dev job / the progress of this game will just make me a full-time game dev if all goes to plan ofc.
    Thanked by 1konman
  • With a prototype like you have, if you continue, I don't see why you would want to make games for other poeple to be frank... :) It looks awesome. I have been playing Valheim recently (which has a similar crafting system and feel).

    Also a save system is intense like you mentioned and I have also gone down that rabbit hole recently. It's painful necessity. Like an octopus the tentacles need to touch everything.

    Keep doing what you are doing, I am getting happy vibes here man. <3

    Thanked by 1Sonicay
  • Best motivation words ever! thank you so much for the kind words, I actually improved my skills a bit.
    I put my game to the side a little bit just to increase a greater portfolio and to show people what I can do as a developer.

    The only reason why I want to work for someone else is, is because I can't go full-time with my ideas / game yet. And the current job im in is not my passion, I want to be a game developer, I actually started working on a contracted gamedev job part-time now, which is taking more of my time, and I have a schedule I need to follow, but I am streamlining his game so fast that I am ahead of schedule.

    It just shows that the more games you create, the faster you can code and get solutions.
    My portfolio is growing greatly.

    https://obsessivegames.co.za/projects.php

    This website shows everything I have worked on already which looks good in my opinion. But yea, I am just releasing a mobile game on Android and then after that my next plans for Guild Hall Adventures will be smooth combat system using some spells like whirlwind and killing that wave of enemies haha.
    Thanked by 1konman
  • Ok, for some reason I struggled getting logged in on the forums today, but finally it went through.

    So quick update, I quit my job yesterday. Now I am going to go full-time into game development as I have saved up a few months to survive and go on this journey. I also have investments to fall back on, also my portfolio looks good enough for people that are reaching out to me for freelance work which I can do at night.

    23rd of April is my last day at my job, but in the meantime I am prepping everything for Guild Hall Adventures to work on it full-time.
    I want to ask everyone for help and support me on this journey and just join my discord of Obsessive Games
    My discord link is in here : https://www.obsessivegames.co.za/

    We can have quick chats and throw ideas at each other and just grow as game developers together.
    I have a great deal to do on the game as I will start making a smooth combat system where there is a juicy feel when killing a enemy like in Path of Exile and Diablo 3.
    Once I got this looking good while doing a few spells and swordplay, then I can focus on making the enemies attack me while going to the gate and not just focus on going to the gate and ignore me hitting them.

    Will sort that out haha.

    Game testers which wants to point out bugs to me and tell me how bad I am at coding, please come, you are more than welcome hahaha :D
  • @Sonicay It's Friday... :)

    I am not going to tell you it's stupid to quit your stable job to pursue your passion, however risky.
    Especially in times like these. I am sure you understand the risks. I have also turned down perm work and juicy contracts that got in the way of a game dev holiday in my case.

    I firmly believe it is more important to follow one's dreams no matter what. If everyone was scared to take risks, nothing would get done. Haha.

    So I applaud your boldness and sincerely wish you all the best. It's a solitary journey.

    Please PM me a build when you are are ready. I'd love to play and would be happy to give feedback if you want on your Discord or elsewhere.

    Cheers,
    K
  • edited
    Ok so I ended up quiting my job like I said, but in the end I was approached by a Gamedev studio to work for them full-time, signed the contract last week.. So guess I'll still have a full-time job, but you know what, it is in the direction I am aiming to be in and this will give me even more experience in the field. I must say, just the few days I was with them already I learnt a lot!

    It was a wise decision to work on my portfolio as that is the one thing that landed me this job and passing programming test they gave me ofc, they showed me an example of someone that took 6 days to create a prototype they wanted and I created it in 3 hours.

    Ok let me stop about other things not related to this thread.
    Will keep it at Guild Hall Adventures.
    @konman - I would love it, if you joined the discord : https://discord.com/invite/QybEbjm

    Picture time.
    Had some nice fun with getting in more assets and getting the combat system working.

    The lighting looks so great but the shadows feel to over the top, I need to dim it down somehow, but will find a way soon.

    image

    I also implemented projectiles and not just having mellee weapons in the game, I might have some gameplay that shows how I kill some monsters. But at this moment I am building the system more stable and letting it work with the amazing save system that is working when going from one scene to the other scene.

    image

    One thing that I loved, was the fact that I got like a little snake Arrow Pet following me. Not sure if it will show very well on this forum, but if you look at the ground you will see the arrow following the Player hahaha. Some weird bug.

    image
    Thanked by 2watman konman
  • edited
    OMG, that looks amazing. Swaying grass and other environment items. Arrow pet seems potentially painful, haha, but very interesting! Wow.

    Minor critique, the sword blade model seems too thick. Subjective preference perhaps.
    Thanked by 1Sonicay
  • The sword blade is a placeholder for now. But thank you so much.
    I even got cinematics sorted, but ugh, will need to do that for a lot of scenes.

    One thing I am realllyyy struggling with is the Area of effect damage still, need to figure that out.
  • Preparing the game for Kickstarter.
    Demo is getting close to be done with the amount of time I have with working on the game.

    Make sure to join the Obsessive Games discord to see the updates I am busy with :)
    Thanked by 1konman
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