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No.42 How Not To Be Seen

Right, so the plan for the next release cycle is to polish the aesthetics on everything that we can.

We’re calling it the “Eyecandy” build and hopefully it’ll make KAG a little more presentable, and a little more visually informative as well.

As you can see from the preview image, dirt is a lot darker and less chunky, which should make mining a little less of a guessing game for new players. That shot doesn’t have the newly updated castle tiles in it but shows one of the draft background layers in effect (though incorrectly scaled, that’s getting fixed next time MM gets a chance).

We’re also going to give the option of using scaling effects on the game – an algorithm similar to hq2x is being used on that preview shot.

Changes are also planned to the HUD and all the actors and structures are getting given a once over to make them stand out a little more from terrain.

In short, KAG will be prettier in a few weeks!

UPDATE – revised a little, the perspective issues are still there but the scale is decreased and there’s more detail. The castle is now a little more ruined, too.

old version here


So, we decided KAG needed a little more ambiance.

I’ll be polishing what’s already there up over the next few days and adding a few more layers for a bit more depth but I’m fairly happy with the mood, I just need to work on foreground/background separation a little more.

Keeping in mind that these are draft parallax layers, what do you think?

99% chance these will come into the game

ModDB community seems to dig our game. Current popularity rank 2 of 4,116.

Hey guys, figured I’d run something by you with a picture to boot that I think would help cut down on griefing – a server lobby.

We’ve all been a part of a game where someone logs in, bombs an outpost and leaves, or starts cutting up the castle, or something equally unscrupulous.

I figure a server lobby and the ability to lock teams and prevent people joining mid-game would prevent those sort of frustrating events because you’d know who you were going to play with before jumping into the game.

The server lobby would also serve as a configuration GUI for some of the more pressing options – Game rules, which map file or generator to use, whether teams are locked in-game, whether players can join mid-game, whether to only allow registered users, whether to only allow paid users, the minimum reputation to allow users to join, etc. Server admins could elect moderators to change some of these settings in their absence.

I think preserving the ability to have a fluid base of players would be important to some people so note that there’d be the ability to turn off all the additional options and even the lobby itself – ESPECIALLY TEAM LOCK AND JOIN BLOCKING.

So, KAG players, what’re your thoughts? This may or may not happen but we’re interested in what you think of this possibility.

We’re currently thinking of implementing some new interactive stuff – stockpiles and rock pots. Both of these will likely be making an appearance in the next major build.

Stockpiles will allow teams to set up supply routes from the mines to the front line without having to run it there themselves. Workers (any anyone with some looted resources) will be able to drop off resources at a stockpile, which through the magic of videogames will be available at any other team stockpile. The catch is that if a stockpile is destroyed by the enemy, then a proportion of your stored resources will be lost along with it.

Rock pots should make defending doors less traumatic. Dumping rocks on the enemy’s heads will have the same effect as firing a catapult at them.

Next build will also contain some fairly notable nerfs unless someone can find a large hole in our plans:

  • Builders will be slowed whilst placing blocks
  • Knights will have to “reshield” after being hit, essentially reducing their ability to be a walking fortress. This means less futile struggles in doorways and potentially more frustrating melee, so this will need tweaking.
  • Archers will have extra warm up time on their arrows, preventing any effective arrow spam – especially at close range. We’ll be tweaking the length of this “zero force” warmup (think of it as putting an arrow to the bowstring) to get a good balance in but the point is archers will be more or less useless at close range.

Hopefully this will encourage a more defensive/support role for archers without making them fall prey to knights >80% of the time.

What do you players think of customisation of your avatar? How important is it?

Here I’ve presented a simple way of customising your avatar – you’d be able to set the skin colour, hair colour and gender of your player and we could probably get that up and working within say, about a week of the CTF release (no promises though 😉 ).

I’d love some feedback on that more realistic proportion of worker as well – I’m thinking that the game world would feel larger and the animation would be more fluid at that scale, as well as giving the game a more unique aesthetic, but Michal is worried about losing “character” in the sprites with the loss of faces to animate… What do you think?

That’s the builder in an environment for comparison.

Forum thread here:

EDIT: I’ve noticed that some people think the two ideas are linked (smaller scale and colour customisation) – They aren’t 🙂

Next release will introduce Capture the Flag gamemode. This is a draft/concept, not necessarily how it will look like.

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