Devblog 5 – December 4 2017
Reflection on November
November was an unsuccessful month for me. I said I was going to do the UI/Menu Updates, along with some other stuff that was mostly already done, and also work on the Space Station level. In reality I mostly worked on the Space Station level, released what I had (almost all) already completed, and pushed some impressive performance improvement on Haunted House.
So why was I unsuccessful? There’s 2 major reasons.
The biggest one:
I allocated way too much time to the Space Station. While its progress is really awesome and I’m really excited about it, I did not deliver on the features that add value now that I said I would be doing.
The other big issue is I underestimated the UI update. After working on it I discovered parts of it I was hoping to defer to a future update need to be done now to provide the most compelling experience while playing Hide and Seek. And…unfortunately these changes are time consuming to implement. If you haven’t seen it yet, here’s a video showing an in-development preview of the new Menus:
Keep in mind this is not the final product, and even as I’m writing this on Monday, it is very different in some places and some issues were resolved.
Also a feature that was requested, I implemented in a way that appears to cause more pain than it resolved. The Auto Kick AFK implementation I cannot count as a success since it really only makes sense to kick the Seeker, since a lot of the time as a Hider, or Spectator, you will not be providing input.
Looking to December, I plan to work on things in the following order:
UI/Menu Updates (expanded)
I stated last time, the UI/Menu Updates is a 2 part task. After really looking at it, it’s more like a 3 or 4 part task. The first 2 are the same as I presented last time. The others are new
- The actual UI Changes that you will see and interact with – this includes the items on screen, animations, sprites, etc..
- The way I manage the UI data – this is more a structure change in how I present and access the data on the UI
- The way I display the UI – more technically – I had 1 canvas that was copy/pasted across every level, so each time I would have to make a change, I’d have to change it everywhere and sometimes that resulted in inconsistencies.
- The experience when using the Menus – this is about the experience you have when using the game. Right now, especially on slower computers, the game may appear to crash at several stages, when in fact, it is just loading data off your hard drive, but it needs to load a ton of it. So this task is more about restructuring the data stored on the disk, and how and when I load that data to make the entire experience of playing Hide and Seek more fluid.
So #4 is really time consuming and #3 is a little time consuming now, but saves me time every future change I will make to the menus.
Auto Kick AFK Update
Along with the UI/Menu Updates …update that I will push this month, this Auto Kick AFK feature will change to only affect Seekers so you can hide in peace and spectate in peace without worrying about getting kicked when you being gone doesn’t affect anyone else in the game.
This was not delievered last month either. It will also probably be a separate update from the main UI updates, but I really do want to add this so you can provide feedback directly from the game instead of having to go to the Community Hub.
I’d really like to put a lot more time into the Space Station level. Depending on how long it takes to complete the UI changes here, I may or may not have a preview video of some of the level to show this month. We’ll see how that pans out.
Yup. Still want to do those. Didn’t get to work on them at all this last month. Probably after the Space Station is done I will get way more time on this.
Space Station Level
Yeah it’s not going to be done this month so it’s longer term.
I see a lot of people being confused about the game saying “it’s weird” or something like that, and really I don’t know what this perception is about. So I asked around and the only feedback I got back was the animations are not 100% fluid and characters sometimes look wonky.
I’d like to address that so it doesn’t feel weird and so I’m adding this Animations Update item here. I have no ETA, I have not started on it, and it probably won’t be for a while since the current animation structure took quite some time to get set up and working as smoothly as it is now.
In the meantime, I’d love to hear from you about what improvements or features you would like to seem made. You can: