Zeus. The code name for the latest game I'm working on. It's going to be an adventure, puzzle, action RPG... and yes, I know that's a mouthful. The game is drawing a lot of inspiration from the old-school Quest for Glory series by Sierra. If you're not familiar with the series, imagine King's Quest, but with combat. If you're not familiar with that either, think of a point-and-click adventure game (like those made by Telltale games), but with less pointing and clicking and more top-down/third-person controls. Add to that role-playing game stats and combat and it starts to paint a picture of what we're making. If you still don't know what I'm talking about, then I've got a new game for you to try out!
You take the role of a newly raised skeleton and after selecting a specialty (warrior, rogue or mage), you quickly get caught up in the politics of the land. You'll have to use all the skills at your disposal to overcome a number of challenges and prevail, likely (and hopefully!) with much hilarity in the process.
Although I took a good bit of time off from game development recently to finish my degree, I dove back in with a vengeance a little over a month ago, and I've made a lot of great progress. I've got a lot of the out-of-combat systems set up, such as inventory management, and intractable objects. I'm pretty happy with how the switching camera worked out:
I also finished an initial prototype of the game's combat system. Although I had to work out a few AI bugs in the process:
I didn't intend for this to be a horror game!
Luckily, I got all the initial bugs worked out, and sent out the prototype to a few friends to try and break...and provide some feedback.
For those interested more in the development side of things, I'm making the game in Unreal Engine 4, which is simply an amazing engine. Also of interest is that 100% of the character and environmental assets for the game are being purchased from the Unreal Marketplace. There's a lot of amazing content there (such as the Skeleton and Ratkin you can see in the image above). While this is limiting in some ways (nothing truly custom), there's a lot of great stuff in the marketplace that we can work with.
I can honestly say that this is the most excited I've been about any of the projects we've worked on, including the games we've published, as well as the projects we've had to scrap. I'm looking forward to sharing more as we move forward.
This article was originally published at Ding! Games.
Shawn Greer is the lead designer and developer at Ding! Games. He's currently working on a project code-named Zeus, a puzzle RPG game for PC For more articles like this or to see more information, please visit their site.