Added new "conveyor belt" functionality
Fri May 28, 2021 1:32am

I was trying to think of other "nifty" tile 'effects' I could add besides just teleports and decided to also add conveyor belts.

These push the player in the direction that they're programmed to push in at each game tick. The player can speed up using these by going with the direction of the belt (effectively giving you two moves per game tick). This helps in out running some enemies.

The belts serve double duty as the player can't walk against the belt. Therefore, they work as forced one-way tiles with no backtracking. Enemies can walk against the belt's direction which can make things interesting.

Tile effects are different from items in the game as the items, who also have their own effect ids, are placed on top of floor tiles, are consumed when picked up and are not tied to the actual map's floor. Tile effects are a permanent action that gets performed each time the player steps on that spot on the map.

Thankfully how I programmed the tile effects, it's pretty simple to add additional ones. Items are currently another story.. I created a whole separate item creator application that's still in the early stages to build those. The idea is that you create the items in the item creator which sets their display information as well as stats, then in the editor you select from your previously created items and place them on the map. This way you can place the same items (ex small health potion) between levels without having to remember all the stats you made of them on each new map. That said, items as of right now have no engine/editor implementation yet.

Anyway... rambling.

Here's a short video showing the conveyor belts in action. The player movement in the large loop around the halfway mark is all being done by the conveyor belts. I don't touch the input until stepping back off the belts.

  • COBOL Roguelike - Erik_, Fri May 07 2021 3:26am
    This project has stemmed from the QB tile engine idea from the previous thread where I decided to try and make it in COBOL ( ). It's been slow going with work and everything but I think it's finally getting somewhere! :... more
    • Added new "conveyor belt" functionality- Erik_, Fri May 28 2021 1:32am
      • Those can be cool - Puckdropper, Sat May 29 2021 5:05am
        I remember conveyor belts with some versions of Zelda. They would also have a switch to change the direction of some belts, so you couldn't access something without finding the switch first. You'd also sometimes be propelled towards an enemy, so you had a problem you had to fix first.
        • Oh! I remember that. That's an excellent idea! - Erik_, Sat May 29 2021 3:03pm
          I was already thinking of switches to open doors and such but didn't think about reversing the conveyor belt's direction. I guess I can reverse the foreground and background color when they get reversed. The tile character can be anything so I don't think I can just swap it to a " Thanks!
          • Flipping color can be a pretty good clue. - Puckdropper, Wed Jun 02 2021 4:37am
            Especially if you choose contrasting colors so it's easy to see that things have flipped. That might help for "color challenged" people (if you think any such people will play your game.)
            • 95% implemented now... (demo video in message) - Erik_, Thu Jun 03 2021 1:16am
              I created a test world that requires you to flip the switches back and forth to get to the exit teleport. I guess I could have picked more contrasting colors, but for just a test I think it's okay. I'm currently not sure if I want to keep the "blinking" while reversed feature or not. (Actually... more
              • I like it. The conveyors work well, it's easy to tell what - Puckdropper, Thu Jun 03 2021 4:56pm
                they're doing. That hidden or secret wall, though, I'd never have discovered. There was a game called "Milton's Secret Castle" or something. Waste for $5 on the Wii Play store. You basically had to know where everything was to unlock secrets or hidden things, and try everything on every tile. ... more
                • Thanks! Glad to hear it's clear what they are. - Erik_, Fri Jun 11 2021 4:05pm
                  Yeah, I guess I could have set the conveyor belt to push you all the way into the wall or something. Where that secret wall is now, you can't exit back out any other way but it could leave you pressing every wall to see which one might "open". (If you even knew that was a possibility).
                  • I've seen games do that the first time - Puckdropper, Sat Jun 12 2021 3:28am
                    to "teach" the player that there's a walk-through wall. The next time, they do just what you did. OTOH, some successful games do go for the inescapable chamber approach.
                    • way to show new features to the player. Give them a spot to learn it so that they know how it works in the future (or know to look out for it.) I remember reading the first level in the original Super Mario Bros was designed like this. It showcased jumping, enemies, pits, star power, mushroom, flowe... more
                      • People read tutorials? - Puckdropper, Thu Jun 17 2021 2:41am
                        Before they're stuck? I just don't understand them... People that is. Some will read, some won't but they'll all play the game. The cool thing about the first level was it did all those teaching things but still felt like "level 1" of the game. Some games have a "teaching" mode that feels ex... more
    • Cool! - Puckdropper, Sat May 08 2021 1:57am
      I kinda like just calling the character "Adventurer", it's very classic PC-game. Nintendo was the one who had you naming your character (4 whole letters!). I often just called it "Link". How does your HP system work? When the enemy attacks, it looked like you took very small damage. (Video 2.... more
      • damage to either 1 or 2 so that they wouldn't kill me before moving to the next section. Right now, your health gets increased and refilled at every level up. I plan on adding health items that will heal you for a certain amount when you pick them up down the road. I think in Zelda for N... more
        • It's a bit of a balancing act... - Puckdropper, Mon May 17 2021 4:23am
          Making sure someone gets some playtime for their quarter (arcade game reference) while not making things too easy so they get too much play time. Yeah, I'm thinking the Capcom Zeldas on Gameboy did 5 letters. It's been a long time since I played the other ones.
          • It's definitely not the fun part of making a game. - Erik_, Thu May 20 2021 5:13pm
            At least not for me! Right now, I'm not really worrying about it so much as the test level data formats are still in flux with me making changes. All the levels in the screenshots/videos no longer work with the current version of the editor and engine. I have a few test levels I've thrown toge... more
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"Forces act when not restrained" - Puckdropper