Motley Crew

Success! I was doing some testing yesterday on NPC appearances, and it seems like it'll be possible to make the NPC sprites match their loadout. Voila!

IMAGE(http://www.bluebottlegames.com/img/screenshots/screenshot-2014-01-07.png) One of these dudes is non-hostile. Can you tell which?

Since I'm adding new factions, and some are non-hostile, there's an opportunity to add some more strategy to the game. Is that person hostile? Are they a threat? Rather than advertising all raiders and bandits images and names, I'm going to try this approach of showing what they're actually wearing. Some might have uniforms, but some might be in rags, and you won't know whether to trust them based on just sight.

For this to work, I'll also need to obscure their real names until something reveals it. So I might make all NPCs "unidentified man/woman" by default, and only show the real name if the player discovers it. Possibly along the lines of berries and botany.

One of the nice side-effects of this feature is more clarity in combat. Now, when viewing more than one opponent in battle, it's easier to tell them apart visually by clothes and carried weapon. No more endless bandits with the same sprite!

Currently, it only shows clothes and carried weapons. So you'll still need to use traditional methods to see the rest of their stuff. This feature also necessitated a change in artwork for the melonhead, to make them compatible with the human-sized equipment. They're taller now, with slightly less-ginormous heads. However, they should still be pretty easy to distinguish from humans.

Tomorrow, we'll have a look at creature identification. And then, maybe run some experiments with non-hostiles! Have a good one, all!

Comments

Kaaven's picture
Kaaven

This starts to look really neat. But now you simply must add the red "bandit" coat, to differentiate the NPCs a little :D
Also I strongly recommend a "Stranger" instead of an "unidentified man/woman" :)


<--Mighty (mini)Mod of Doom-->
DeviantArt Gallery of MoD Sprites

Malacodor's picture
Malacodor

Invasion of the gray, bald men!
http://mubi.com/films/momo

@ Kaaven: Yes, "unidentified man/woman" is a typical Dan F. expression - precise and correct, but inconvenient. ;-) "Stranger" is way more catchy.

Ran around with a clown mask before it was cool

dcfedor's picture
dcfedor

Lol, yeah yeah. Reminds me of when someone described my UI design as like Google products: obtuse as hell at first glance, but if you know how it works, it does everything you need.

I guess I need to channel my inner Steve Jobs from time-to-time :)

Dan Fedor - Founder, Blue Bottle Games

Hunter4408's picture
Hunter4408

Awesome! The non-hostile dude at the top is the one with the green glow? Lol.

- Hunter

Do what you want because a pirate is free! You are a pirate!

Hunter4408's picture
Hunter4408

Will there still be looters/bandits/raiders, although they are in this new form of gray bald men?

- Hunter

Do what you want because a pirate is free! You are a pirate!

dcfedor's picture
dcfedor

I dunno. Judging by most player accounts, the player is the biggest jerk in the wasteland. Strong+Tough+Meleeing people everywhere, stealing their stuff, skinning them and eating their flesh...

As for bandits et al, most of them will be replaced by more named factions. E.g. the Bad Muthas, Alvin's Butchers, Cult of the Blue Frog, SkyCorps (DMC police), etc.

I may keep "Looter" simply because there will be non-aligned looters out there, picking over scraps. Similarly, there may be a bunch of unnamed neutrals, like "Enclaver" and "Rubble Scum." All of these are likely to be rag-tag, and have no allegiance.

Dan Fedor - Founder, Blue Bottle Games

asthepanda2iscool's picture
asthepanda2iscool

If you can make this work it would be a huge landmark for NS,on the topic of neutral NPC's wouldn't it be possible to have say...a hired gun(mercenary) all with their own traits.

(earlier you talked about NPC's having their own traits and now neutral NPC's,so if you could get that working it would be easier to make loyal companions or just hired thugs?)

asthepanda2