Been waxing nostalgic quite a lot lately, for some reason. Digging through old games, playing Nethack a bunch, playing DROD, etc... Spent a little time googling for old games I used to play, and reminiscing about the good old days. You see, I haven't bought a new game since I bought Zelda:Wind Waker for the GameCube. I'm as big a fan of fancy, high-powered graphics as anyone, but lately it seems like nothing really tickles my fancy. Probably just a phase I'm going through...
I've tentatively settled on 4 playable golems for Golem. Throughout the course of the game, the player will need to find all 4 in order to complete the game, as each possesses unique abilities that are required for forward progress.
Burzor -- If you've seen screenies of Golem/Golem3D, you've seen this fellow. In 2D Golem, he was a blue and brown bug-like creature with scythe-like blades for hands, whom you can also see marching endlessly at the top of this journal. In Golem3D, he is an ugly-ass, bug/turtle looking thing--again, with blades for hands. I am reworking him to make him look better, but he will be the starting golem. Burzor and his kin were constructed as harvesters in the Days Before, and spent their days cutting grain and hay and grass. In the Days After, they were bloody and terrible warriors, their natural weaponry and quick agility making them formidable opponents who slaughtered countless humans.
Burzor can slice through small bushes or trees, and makes an effective warrior in melee combat, but he can not break strong obstacles or pick up and throw objects. Upgrades can be found to change his armor characteristics and increase the power of his blade attack.
Lourdos -- This fellow currently exists only as a few sketches and a (very rough) prototype model while I work out his animations. A large, hulking, slow-moving stone golem, Lourdos was created in the Days Before as a bearer of burdens and a hauler of wagons. Stronger than any ox, and often employed in road-building labor, Lourdos can bash things with enormous stone fists, breaking through barriers and crushing armor. Where crumbled rock walls conceal secrets or passages, he can break them down. He can smash barrels and crates to get at the treasure inside, and a blow of his fist will send enemies reeling or flying backward, stunned for a few moments.
Orochlon -- I haven't really given this fellow a whole lot of thought, haven't tried to visualize his appearance or done any sketches. All I know are some details of his role. He is the ranged combatant of the bunch, able to pick up and throw stones, crystal shards, and other objects. Though he is not very effective in the melee combat department, he can be a holy terror when there is ample ammunition lying around on the ground. Certain switches in the game can only be triggered by a thrown object, so Orochlon does his share of secret-finding.
Sheoul -- This golem was the Black One's lorekeeper and recorder of deeds in the Days Before. Gaunt, skeletal and winged with great, leathery wings, Sheoul can leap into the air, spread his wings and glide for short distances before his energy is exhausted and he falls to the ground. As well, there are certain magical Talismans whose secrets he can unlock to cast elemental spells. In melee combat, he is the weakest of all, but with the proper Talismans he can be a terrible force indeed.
I've been making pretty decent progress on the physics and actions that each of these can do, as far as implementation in the engine. I've got walking, running, pushing barrels, breaking objects, and attacking implemented. Currently working on Sheoul's jump-n-glide action. This one is proving tricky for a reason I hadn't foreseen--shadows.
Right now, there are no shadows in the game. So there is really no way to tell exactly what spot Shaeoul is hovering over in order to effect an on-target landing. I suppose I'll have to figure out how I'm going to implement shadows at some point. Since I am trying as well as I can to target lower-end hardware, many shadow algorithms are out of the question.
Oh, well, it's always something...