Look at that! I’m almost on a semi-regular posting basis. I believe this makes 3 posts in 3 weeks. Baby steps, folks, baby steps.

State of the Union

Overall, it was a pretty good month for me. After so much back end work, it’s been nice to be on the polar opposite of things, doing all sorts of things with the UI. Some of it was cosmetic, some was functionality, but everything was in the “Quality Of Live Improvements” category. Here’s a quick run down on what I accomplished.

Radial Menus

For the longest time, I had a pretty static list menu for doing the only 2 actions that are currently possible in the game: Attacking and Defending/End the turn. I knew I wanted to at least mess around with radial menus for quite some time, and I’m very happy that I was able to whip something together relatively quickly. This is important, because who knows, maybe I’ll move away from this approach. But for now, I like where it is at, so I’ll be adding more functionality in the future.

Cancel Action Functionality

Man, this was a biggie!!! I mean, this is standard issue stuff, and it took me damn near 9 months to get something implemented. Probably one of my personal favorites from the past few months.

Turn Order UI/Unit Visual Cues

As development continues, and as I play more and more battles, I start to realize little things. Like, “Man, I wish I knew which enemy is going to move next” or “I wish I could keep the range of the enemy’s attack up while I plot my next move”. Again, this is basic stuff, but it just adds a little touch to the game that makes the battlefield easier to read.

The above GIF highlights the added inter-activeness I’ve applied to the Turn Order UI. A little highlighting cue to confirm to you which one you’ve highlighted, as well as the color, to specify if it is ally or foe. Also, i will highlight the unit on the battlefield so you can see where they actually are. Good for those moments when you’re like, “Okay, where is the next enemy that will strike first”.

This next GIF shows how you can now select an enemy after you mouse over them in order to keep their movement range highlighted on the battlefield. You’ll notice the little adjustment I make to the alpha/transparency of the color, making it a little stronger when selected. Also, their corresponding Turn Order UI image will remain selected as well.

Another little touch, the Turn Order UI image of a target will be highlighted when you target them, so it’s clear which enemy you’re attacking (imagine you’re surrounded by 8 enemies but only 1 is going to have a turn soon).

What’s Next?

  • implement ability system
    • basic attacks
    • magic
    • talents
    • define all abilities in JSON files, associate to existing unit JSON files
    • integrate into existing radial menu system
  • have SPEED attribute actually affect the Turn Order
  • have basic battle attributes, such as DEFENSE, STRENGTH, DEXTERITY, etc. affect combat in a real way. (This should technically be the first thing I work on, but I’m working off of momentum, which is why I’m tackling the larger ability system first).

Till tomorrow…