Dev Blog

Dev-Blog 230: Transportive Tour Guides!

07/27/2016

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Welcome back followers of the fearsome!

This week we’ll be checking out some more of those nifty characters we added recently! We’ve been creating these guys during our dev-streams and they’ve been turning out pretty well!

These characters ask for different treasures as you go through the game and if you like finding extra stuff to fight and collect then be sure to keep an eye out for what they are after!

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Above you can see some of the cast of tour guides that will lead our players to new challenges if they’d like to tackle them. Since these guys are after some key treasures, Players are going to have to make a decision whether to gift the loot to these guys or keep them for themselves. Some of the Areas these guys will lead you too are quite difficult so it’ll end up stopping your run short and you’ll lose out on that new treasure!

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Here we can see that somber fisherman pining for a sweet aquatic statue of gold! You’ll have to check out the game to see where he’ll take you if you part with your spoils! The Tour guide mechanic helps us get some more mileage out of some of our areas and also adds some funny characters to the mix. We are super happy to have them all in there!


And don’t forget that we’ll be Dev-Streaming at 4PM to 6PM PST today! It’s been a really great experience sharing our development process with you guys and we hope to see you there!VS_DevstreamBanner


And that’s it for this week’s dev-blog! Hope you had a good time hanging out and checking up on or process and until next time, keep those tour guides full of character!

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Twitter: Nick: @nickwaanders Jesse: @jouste Caley: @caleycharchuk SlickEntertainment: @SlickEntInc

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/SlickEntertainmentInc

Twitch: http://www.twitch.tv/slickentertainmentinc

Posted by: Under: Art Work,Slick Entertainment,Vikingsquad Comments: Comments Off on Dev-Blog 230: Transportive Tour Guides!

Dev-Blog 229: Map Action and Ikenfell Shout out!

07/20/2016

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Welcome back followers of the fearsome!

This week we’ll jump on some of the last touches we’ve been adding to that ever-changing world map! World maps are super tricky and constantly being updated and changed. Our areas have gone through quite a few face lifts and our old world map is a little outdated.

That just means we get to tackle it again! This time we push the camera right in and keep the player’s selection focused and bring out some of our more famous level elements in the zone continents! Below you can see that our new zone one drawing has some cool kraken tentacles, Snowclaw mining gear, and dig site tents! This will hopefully keep our players up to date on where they are adventuring and also gives us an excuse to have more details!

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And here’s another look at some of the specifics we can fit in with our new, larger zone images. The Snowclaw tavern entrance is pretty iconic with the twin fishbiers and the kings statue is one of the first things you’ll be running into in zone 3. Now that they’ll be easy to see on the world map players should be able to remember the areas a bit better and be more connected with their choices!

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And a quick shout out to our buddy Chevy Ray who has a mere 3 days left on his Ikenfell Kickstarter! Congratulations on reaching your goal pal! Of course more support means more stuff from that super charming game so go check it out early while you still can and help out a super great dev!

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And remember that we’ll be Dev-Streaming today at 4pm PST! Come hang out with the crew while we hammer out some more artwork for Viking Squad as we sail ever closer to shipping!

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And that’s it for this week! Thanks a ton for dropping by and checking out our progress. we are getting super close as Nick finishes up the networking on the PS4 (a one man army that guy is) and Caley tightens up all the encounters for maximum engagement! Hope your week had been great and until next time, keep those world maps in a constant state of being updated!

Jesse_avatar64-Jesse

Twitter: Nick: @nickwaanders Jesse: @jouste Caley: @caleycharchuk SlickEntertainment: @SlickEntInc

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/SlickEntertainmentInc

Twitch: http://www.twitch.tv/slickentertainmentinc

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Dev-Blog 228: Boiler Room Bonanza!

07/13/2016

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Welcome back followers of the fearsome!

We hope your week has been going by well as we here at Slick forge out the remaining bits of Viking Squad! We’ve been testing the online and it’s feeling really great as well as diving into our “Hard Mode” end game content and getting those final fights challenging!

This also gives us a chance to go over some of the levels with a bit of cool polish and artwork now  that everything is in the final stages. One of these areas that I wanted to touch up with some new art was the Snowclaw’s basement. This area is cool because it’s darker and has these neat hot coal vents in the floor that glow orange and send embers up into the air. There wasn’t a lot of supporting artwork there but we liked the idea so much we decided to make it a boiler room! The Snowclaws need a lot of heat to get their fish bier just right!

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Above you can see the steps and how great it is to be able to just snag screenshots and start adding elements right into the game! We are also lucky that the lore is fuzzy in Viking Squad so complicated plumbing systems still feel alright in our weird and wacky world. the slots in the boilers and stoves also allow us to have interesting pools of light and gauges offer some fun places to add small bits of animations!

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here’s a quick shot with some lighting and an idea of the modular pieces we can use to mix around and make whatever pipe patterns we want. The boilers really add a bunch of interesting shapes to this area so I guess they’ve done their job! As usual the images are drawn at a pretty high resolution so they can be scaled and twisted around to get more mileage out of the elements.


 

And remember that we’ll be Dev-Streaming today at 4pm PST! We’ve been having a blast interacting with our viewers and working on the game with an audience so be sure not to miss it!

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So that’s this week’s Dev-Blog! Thanks for stopping by as we sail ever closer to shipping! Keep those blades sharp and until next time, keep those boiler rooms interesting!

Jesse_avatar64-Jesse

Twitter: Nick: @nickwaanders Jesse: @jouste Caley: @caleycharchuk SlickEntertainment: @SlickEntInc

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/SlickEntertainmentInc

Twitch: http://www.twitch.tv/slickentertainmentinc

Posted by: Under: Art Work,Slick Entertainment,Vikingsquad Comments: Comments Off on Dev-Blog 228: Boiler Room Bonanza!

Dev-Blog 227: The Slab!

07/06/2016

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Welcome back followers of the fearsome!

This week we’ll be taking a look at a new addition to the main village in Viking Squad. We wanted something that changes during the course of your voyages to show your victories and help show the progression of your exploits! Below we can see the slab in all of it’s level 1 glory! There are some carvings embedded in the stone that make out a very rough star map. Tackling the challenges in Viking Squad activates these carvings and makes them glow!

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In this image here you can see that we wanted the slab to be made from the same material as our checkpoint Valkstones. These chunks of powerful rocks reset players revive state and allows you to choose where to enter a zone. After defeating the Kraken boss of zone 1, the constellation is activated and you can show off your new slab to all your friends!

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The green stones are a fun image system to revisit through the game. We came up with the idea that they actually came from the Bifrost plane and that’s why they are linked so strongly with the after life and players can revive fallen comrades after passing them. The Bifrost plane has been shaken up thanks to the release of Loki and that’s had some interesting effects on all the Valkstones around the world of Viking Squad.


And don’t forget that we’ll be dev-streaming today at 4pm-6pm PST! Come on by and see how Viking Squad art is hammered out and hang with the whole crew at Slick Entertainment! We’ve been getting a lot of really great visitors and our chat has been really awesome! See you there!

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And That’s it for this week! Nick’s been tackling the networking while Caley has been tightening up all the encounters. It’s getting super close guys so thanks for stopping by and checking out what we’ve been up to! So until next time, keep those slab constellations unlocked and glowing!

Jesse_avatar64-Jesse

Twitter: Nick: @nickwaanders Jesse: @jouste Caley: @caleycharchuk SlickEntertainment: @SlickEntInc

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/SlickEntertainmentInc

Twitch: http://www.twitch.tv/slickentertainmentinc

Posted by: Under: Art Work,Vikingsquad Comments: Comments Off on Dev-Blog 227: The Slab!

Dev-Blog 226: Tools for tuning

06/29/2016

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Welcome back followers of the fearsome!

It’s Caley here this week and I’ve got a fun post on a tool we use to tune the in-game economy of Viking Squad (not the real economy, Nicks making a different tool for that).

Game economies, and real ones, are always hard to nail down as you can never fully predict how people will interact with complex systems. Players will miss things, they’ll exploit systems and find bugs you had no idea existed. They may even choose to opt out of certain mechanics entirely. To be fair many of these things are what makes a game engaging. But as a developer you want to leave as little up to chance as possible and develop an economy that rewards but also pushes back.

There are numerous ways to go about testing and tuning a game economy. You can enlist friends and playtesters to play the game so you can see how they interact with it (Early Access anyone?). You can playtest it yourself by trying to mimic various play styles. You can even try to find all the major outliers such as bugs that may cause some players to have an abnormal experience. All of these can and do work to make your game a better experience.

So as we put the finishing touches on the game these are a lot of the questions I spend my time addressing. If you add randomization to the system, such a random drops from enemies the outliers can be even tougher to track down. Let alone how the game will play for the average user. To make all this a bit easier on us Nick has made a tool that simulates thousands of games played and returns the averages. Which you see below.

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Using this tool i can select parts or entire levels and see the average Treasure gain the player is getting based on 1000’s of games simulated (Treasure is the in game currency used to upgrade your character in Viking Squad). You can see it in action below.

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The tool pulls directly from our data so it is always relevant and up to date making it great for checking random drops and ensuring there are no weird bugs that i left on some odd object. I can also see in real time how changes I make affect our economy. It shows the rates for one, two and three player games since more enemies spawn if more players are in the level.

One thing this tool doesn’t show is if a treasure is gained through a secret or some skillful play. This is where I step in and decipher the averages to better understand how your various players will get through the game.

That’s all for this week. Be sure to stop by Jesse’s twitch stream today at 4pm pst.

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Twitter: Nick: @nickwaanders Jesse: @jouste Caley: @caleycharchuk SlickEntertainment: @SlickEntInc

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/SlickEntertainmentInc

Twitch: http://www.twitch.tv/slickentertainmentinc

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Dev Blog

July 27 2016

Welcome back followers of the fearsome! This week we’ll be checking out some more of those nifty characters we added recently! We’ve been creating these guys during our dev-streams and they’ve been turning out pretty well! These characters ask for different treasures as you go through the game and if you like finding extra stuff […]