Tuesday, 20 June 2017

Game Maker Progress 38: Continuing Foundation of Civilisation Project

Hello everyone,

After a fair amount of time focusing on other work; it's time to continue on Foundation of Civilisation. One of the first steps after the fair amount of time being not working on the project was to re-adjust back into the work I had already done - and seeing how to adjust to the new schedule now that University work is for the moment complete. 

I have chosen to move the project onto Game Maker Studio 2. The new work-flow and features have already proven to be extremely valuable - the most key of which being the new layering systems within the room editor. This has made layers the interface, various instances of objects and so on - far simpler and intuitive. 

Whilst Game Maker Studio 2 did allow for a very simple import of a GM1 project - I have slowly been adjusting the project to not use any of the compatibility elements that come with importing the project. Eventually, I aim to make sure that the project is a GM2 project rather than a GM1 project. Now moving forward what are the priorities? 

The first priority will be getting the project to a playable position and to begin testing in that way. As I have previously spoken about - getting the core of the game-play working is urgent. As such - the first milestone will be that - having the project to a state where the core game-play is functional. After this is done, other game-play elements will be added to add depth, and ensure the user interface is intuitive and convenient. 

Much of what I've achieved in the past week has been hidden system components - such as getting the population code working, the work-posts code working, and changing old systems to fit into GM2 in a way I can work with GM2's workflow easier moving forward. I have begun working on adding the UI elements needed to play the game.

One of the key pieces of the UI elements was the selection of structures. I had a few ideas on how to achieve this in a way that does not take over most of the screen, but also relay the information needed in a manner that both clear and readily available. The above image shows one of the structures available to be built, the Artisan district; by selecting it, you open a few interface elements that will fit as shown on the right image. 

I will also be adding At-A-Glance [AAG] elements that give the player information on specific tiles that they can access during game-play quickly. Depending on what type of structure, the AAG elements will differ - for work-posts, the players will be able to quickly see the workers set and maximum amounts, the efficiency and the current production of that work-post.

It's good to finally be working on this project once again - I plan on getting the playable version ready as soon as I can so that I can begin getting feedback on the new way the game plays - and work with this new feedback to improve the project.

Until next time,

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