The frog returns!

Hi all, this update is overdue, but I have to post something smaller scale or I’ll keep putting things off until I can do some big long promo video again, and that might be a little way off. To elaborate, I really have to keep updating or I get inclined to keep things secret for too long and sooner or later I want to start streaming dev and graphics again, which is really difficult when I have big sections under wraps, duh! (Oh and on the subject of streaming, Earok has started streaming scorpion dev sessions, you should go follow him on Twitch!)

Anyway.. I had a bad couple of weeks for health reasons but I’m back on track again!

Not many people played Zombie Holiday Prologue, back in ye olde days of Power Game Factory, but one thing I’ve been aiming to do is revisit and improve on most, if not all of the ideas in that short game.. That’s the thinking behind the swamp level, and to cap that off, the swamp boss.

In ZH it looked, and worked like this. I really liked how Frobert was out of reach and you had to use unusual means to hit him (in that case alternating switches to drop big rocks on him) – so I needed something similar – but not identical. (I’ll probably use a similar falling objects trick on a different boss later though)

One thing I never got around to implementing in ZH though was the shotgun, so now I have that I thought – maybe I could reflect the bullets around the room off of slanted surfaces?.. Which looked wonky, but then it dawned on me I already have these pipe tiles – maybe I could shoot into the pipes and have the bullets come out of the other end?

So that’s how we got here..

The statues are a throwback to his old ZH lair, and a bit of a callback to SOTB3, Deliverance etc but I’d also been playing a lot of Assassins Creed Odyssey, which is full of giant naked statues, so may have been influenced by that, haha. Left to do on this stage are the character dialogue portraits and a way out of the chamber once you’ve defeated him!

There’s more to this fight, and it needs a little tweaking, (introducing tiny frogs) but you get the idea. The short stage leading up to this chamber is pretty fun too with a giant slime pit and rope bridges.

For the copper background I used a few different techniques. I hand animated 8 frames of the trippy fog stuff, then ran it through BitmapFlow to interpolate extra frames, then cleaned those up. It’s a neat little tool that in some cases can give great between frames, though in others cases, is completely useless. It frequently gives “smooth-ish but weird” looking results, and sometimes that’s useful!

The mushrooms in the background and dangly stuff on the ceiling was iterated on a lot, the biggest problems I had were keeping it to 3 colours per line (technically scorpion can use 4, but to keep things clean and not spill into the black border I like to keep to 3 colours on levels with vertical movement) and making the mushrooms separated randomly – but dense enough that they don’t synchronise into a janky looking vertical grid every now and then as you move about.

I’m planning on moving onto the mansion stage soon, probably the most important and possibly biggest level in the game. Fingers crossed!

Next update will likely be about animations. See you in approximately a week!


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