Last week, I went into lengthy detail about the look and feel of my newest game, Shadowfall. As a recap, Shadowfall is a roguelike platformer that features randomized level generation. In Shadowfall, the player takes the role of a Knight of Light called Sir Bright, who has to outrace an evil entity called the Darkness up a tower to save the world. This week, let’s talk about getting that look down in a quick form to see if it will look interesting as a concept. This is called making a mockup. Without further ado, here’s what the game currently plans to look like:
This is generally what the entire game is supposed to look like, at least until I decide to change something if that ever happens. I’m trying to go for a Light vs Dark theme, with massive emphasis on the contrast of both Black and White. Enemies are primarily black, the Player and the Tower are white, and everything else like platforms and hearts is grey as neutral participants.
So let’s look at the three sides and where my current assets are coming from.
The tower that the Player climbs in the game is a Tower of Light, home of the powerful Light Gem. Hence, the Tower is meant to represent a pillar of light. There are no assets for the tower itself, so I left the background completely white. This also helps because it makes the platforms and enemies more visible.
The Player is a Knight that also represent the Light side. He wears massive armor and is really bright. Still, because of the white background, he required some black in his sprite.
This sprite was modified by me. The original is this:
At the moment, this sprite is used solely for the purpose of this mockup. This sprite isn’t animated, and so isn’t used in the current build right now. I’m still on the lookout for the perfect sprite to use, so I’ll keep you all posted in the coming weeks when I do find it. For now, the build is using a sprite from another one of my earlier games. If you’re interested, check out this week’s test build at the bottom of this post!
Moving on, the Darkness is a large, shapeless entity that is devouring the world. The Player has to use the Light Gem at the top of the tower to undo the destruction of the Darkness and send it back into the smallest of holes. Obviously, the Darkness doesn’t want this to happen, and so it chases the Player all the way to the top of the tower. The Darkness is represented by this shapeless thing that crawls up the screen.
I created the Darkness graphic for the development process of the game. Near the end of the game’s development, I will animate this graphic so that the tendrils look like its trying to grab at the Player. It travels up the screen, like in this mockup:
The Darkness is accompanied by its many minions. I decided to settle on a specific artist so that the style of the enemies are constant between them. That artist is Calciumtrice from OpenGameArt.Org. His pixel art monsters are just about perfect right now. Here are a few sprite sheets that I took for this game:
I’m using every frame from these sprite sheets, but something about them doesn’t fit the look I’m going for. They’re not dark, or to be more accurate, black. So I modified them.
So there are a number of neutral objects and characters in the game. For one, the randomized platforms are made of multiple blocks.
I took one of these 4×4 block sets and modified it to be grey.
The game randomly picks from these 16 blocks to build the platforms for the game’s levels.
The Player has hearts on the right side of the screen to show how many hits the Player can take before he loses strength and falls over. These hearts are also found on certain levels to replenish the Player’s health when picked up.
Again, I modified it to be grey. Its grey, because at this point of the design, enemies can pick them up if the player is too slow.
In the mockup, you probably saw a counter for Light. That is to count the number of Light Orbs you have picked up in your adventure up the tower. Light Orbs act as the Player’s currency when the Player dies and goes to “Heaven”, a shop that sells upgrades. These Orbs are dropped by dead shadow minions.
The orb was modified to contain shades of black, white and grey since they are obtained from the Dark Minions and picked up by the Light Player. For this mockup, I couldn’t put the Light Orbs in as they are supposed to be incredibly small and numerous as a Minion dies. Just think of them as blood droplets, spattering from the Minions.
I have a Game Over Screen. It’s a good place to show what font I’m using right now:
The font I’m using is Morris Roman. It’s a font that is very reminiscent of medieval/fantasy ink writing on parchment, which is close to the setting of the world.5
To those who are interested, try out the latest build here: DOWNLOAD (1MB)
How to Play:
- Click on the link above, and press on Download.
- Use Flash Player to play the game. If you don’t have it or don’t know how, just drag the file onto Google Chrome.
And there you have it. If you’re interested in following the development of Shadowfall even further, try out the latest build. It doesn’t have the enemies except for the Darkness itself, nor does it have lives and Light Orbs. More of these will be implemented as time moves on, I assure you. Do comment if you have a problem, a suggestion or a thought!