Progress on the game
My name is Dennis and I am the guy who wrote code for Confederate Express.
In this update I wanted to share how much work has been done on the project
and what still needs to be completed.
This one took a while. I realized early that pixel perfect content is very managment-heavy to render.
That's why I had to create a framework (False2D™) to assist me with code and texture generation, packing sprites and just being a general content provider between Photoshop and Unity.
The game code is largely a done deal, with a few minor tweaks and additions planned. As of today, Confederate Express has 253k lines of code.
Maksym - who created art and animations - has sharpen his skill greatly during these last three years, and now the visual fidelity is nearly seamless.
We have also carefully designed his work setup which led to an enormous increase in productivity. You wouldn't believe how much effort is wasted on content management between Photoshop and Unity!
The majority of still art assets created are game environments - "scenes" where gameplay will take place. So far we have put together only 3 playable levels and it took us surprisingly short time. Besides these 3 levels there is enough content (textures/objects) to last for around 30-40 levels, depending on the design. Great potential!
The animations were by far the most time-consuming part. An average charracter has at least a thousand of unique animation frames - and so far 22 characters have been fully completed. Combine that with hand drawn special effects and interactive environment - it's no wonder Max has spent nearly 2 years on animations alone! So far there are 42,000+ animated frames: 35,015 for objects and characters and 8,000+ for special effects.
Music I have made myself, using really great tools. I have made 24 feature tracks and around 15 ambient tracks. The style fits the game mood really well, but I am still not sure how to implement it in the final product. My general plan is to have feature tracks playing during major game events (boss fights, cutscenes), and ambient tracks just looping in the background providing atmosphere. I hope you like it!
Things TO DO:
1. Sound Effects.
As most of the sounds are still missing - we are trying to hire an audio production specialist. So far we have settled on AJ Lornie (he was mentioned in KS campaign) to help us with audio design - hopefully we can raise enough funds here on itch.io to pay for his services.
2. Artificial Intelligence
So far the AI of all enemy characters is very limited to a see-chase-shoot scenario.
We want to expand this through a variety of patterns, game logic and special mechanics. This will add a challenging "puzzle" element to this game - providing flavor to otherwise mundane farming.
3. Main Characters
In Confederate Express, there are 3 main character you can play as: Jackson, Igor and Mach4. So far only Jackson has fully implemented skills and abilities - and we still need to finish kit designs for Igor and Mach4. This is hard to estimate, as all characters must be equal in balance compared to each other.
4. Assembling levels
As mentioned earlier, we have put together 3 playable levels using our level creation tools. This process was very smooth and we are confident in our ability to expand content rapidly - given that the textures and objects are already present - all that's left is putting it together.
These are the main cornerstones of our project. As you can see, the game is ready to be assembled, and we wanted to share this process through itch.io pre-order system. We estimate the core game to be completed by this January, with a brief testing phase before release.
Thank you for taking an interest in our project! We greatly appreciate your support.