If you're an indie dev or author of a game, book, film, or other production, this is where you can pitch it -- just don't be spammy!
User avatar
noiseredux
Next-Gen
 
Posts: 38079
Joined: Fri Nov 14, 2008 1:09 pm

Re: I am Overburdened [devlog]

by noiseredux Wed Nov 14, 2018 4:27 pm

When are we gonna see a physical release via Limited Run Games or one of those other small boutique publishers? :)
Image
User avatar
Spidi777
16-bit
 
Posts: 62
Joined: Fri Mar 03, 2017 4:13 pm
Location: Budapest, Hungary

Re: I am Overburdened [devlog]

by Spidi777 Sat Nov 17, 2018 4:37 am

I suspect a game needs to be at least somewhat successful to be taken on for physical boxing/publishing :(
But if it ever reaches that point (would be awesome :)), you'll be among the first to receive a boxed version noiseredux :wink:
User avatar
Spidi777
16-bit
 
Posts: 62
Joined: Fri Mar 03, 2017 4:13 pm
Location: Budapest, Hungary

Re: I am Overburdened [devlog]

by Spidi777 Thu May 16, 2019 2:12 pm

Hi there!

Maybe I should start with some rambling about why I've been dormant for so long, but I want to jump right into the details of the latest I Am Overburdened update I've just released. I'm leaving the boring bits to the end ;) !

Update

Version 1.2.1. has a plethora of changes, but most of these are fixes, tunings and other tiny additions. All in all it is not THE huge content update I've been teasing, but it has a bunch of nice things I hope many will appreciate.

Image

The game has been localized to German ( Image ...) and Spanish ( Image ...). With this second set of official translations the game now supports 7 languages :O ! Hopefully this way even more players will be able to enjoy the wacky descriptions and dialogues :) I would love to add even more in the future, but I can't make promises yet as these take time and money. Will try my best.

Special thanks to the translators for their work:
Nico Weiß (canemus): German, Juan Buleo (PsychoKurt): Spanish

Mouse and UI

When I Am Overburdened launched it lacked proper mouse support. I patched-in this feature shortly after and I tried upgrading it ever since, but there are still a few ideas left worth pursuing.

Book graphics and controls

Image

The menu book graphics were improved with a simple trick and all the screens received separate "Back" and "Close" buttons. This way it is way easier to navigate them (some menu "stacks" were quite deep) + now it is possible to move around with only the left mouse button easily.

In-game UI

Image

There is a new book icon under the health-bar for opening the menus. Again this allows left mouse button only navigation during play.

Inn renovation

Image

The same way the user interface needed some changes to better support controlling the game with mouse only, the inn had to be updated a bit to accommodate. I added a journal next to the innkeeper which can be used to access the main menu.

Stash confusion

Image

Many players claimed that they did not notice the "Stash" in the inn and had no idea about collecting starting items. Mea culpa, this was a big design error on my end. Now when it has items in it there is a smoke effect triggered when entering the inn similar to the ones accompanying other unlocks and play variants. Hope this helps in discovering the unlocked starter items.

Bug-fixes and tweaks

Besides adding new languages a lot of localization fixes found their way into the game. Layouts of the menus were changed a little to make translated content better fit them. I also increased the item pickups notification time for longer fluff texts as translators suggested.

Image

A small balance change was applied too. The luck penalty on nightmare difficulty has been decreased to 3 from 5. It is not a heavy impact modification, but it does make nightmare an itsy-bitsy less luck based.

Path-finding

Image

I made a mistake in the underlying path-finding system which caused a rare but weird issue when controlling the player with the mouse. Fixed!

That is all for this update, but soon more will follow!

So what's up?

Sadly In the last six months I had to face a lot of difficulties (financial, personal and housing/moving related). Due to this I left the game hibernated and as a result its community dwindled :(

I really wish to do a 180 on this. I'm going to have free time for making updates in the upcoming months and I already re-organized my TODO list and plans. I'm also working on a somewhat "new" project pretty closely related to I Am Overburdened ;)

To sum it up, I really had neither time, nor money or energy to work on the game. Thankfully it looks like now I'm on track to complete updates I've been dying to deliver for months now :)

Thanks for taking the time to read my post.
Stay tuned!
User avatar
Spidi777
16-bit
 
Posts: 62
Joined: Fri Mar 03, 2017 4:13 pm
Location: Budapest, Hungary

Re: I am Overburdened [devlog]

by Spidi777 Thu Jun 13, 2019 4:39 pm

Hello everyone!

New I Am Overburdened update, new entry ;)
This time instead of launching new content or features I'm upgrading the graphics of the game a little.

Graphical facelift

As I hinted before on social media I've been working on multiple graphics related changes. This is the first update for I Am Overburdened focusing only on the visual aspect. If the response is good I may create another similar one :)
Let me know what you think!

Auto-Tiling

The biggest graphical improvement is the auto-tiling feature of the dungeon levels. In short, it is a technique to (dynamically) change tiles based on their neighbors to achieve a much less "blocky" look and to add depth to the scenes.

Image

To me, the difference is night and day. It does make the grid structure of the levels less readable (functionally may be a bit of a downgrade), but it makes the dungeons feel much more claustrophobic so all in all, I feel like it is a big win :)

Some technical details:

Image

The most flexible and well-established method is the "blob" or 8-way auto-tiling where you create special tile graphics with the required corners for all the relevant neighbor combinations (47 exist, the first part of the image). Each neighbor is represented by a bit (power of 2 value, the second part of the image) and by combining the flags of the ~important matching neighbors you get a unique value identifying the required tile.

Even though I coded a system like this long ago I decided to go with a different technique because of the amount of graphical work required...

Image

So I switched to the "sub-tile" approach. It is super simple to implement and requires much less sprite work while still achieving a similar result. The idea here is to split tiles which require special corner graphics and check the relevant neighbors for each corner. To cover each situation 4 variants are required so 16 sub-tiles. Based on the horizontal, vertical and diagonal neighbors of a given corner the appropriate sub-tile graphic can be selected and voila. Auto-tiling.

Crystal clear

The looks of the last episode in the game received some valid criticism. My original goal was to make the "Crystalline Cavern" a bit confusing. Almost like a place full of mirrors. I think I went a little overboard and visual clarity suffered a lot.

Image

I've redrawn parts of the tile-set, recolored the rest and a new walking effect was introduced to preserve the reflecting and mirror-like feeling.

Rain

The ambient sounds in the inn just weren't doing it justice. I added some splash effects outside of the building to set a more convincing mood.

Image

Bugs & Performance

The fixes and optimizations are graphics related too. The biggest enhancement is the introduction of multiple (rendering) layers within the effect system and overall improved effect handling performance.

Effect layers

This problem probably did not bother many players, but some environment effects looked funny before the introduction of multi-layer spell effects.
Fixed!

Image

Mouse control sprites

There was a tiny sprite state related bug which could only occur when controlling the game with the mouse. Not anymore.

Image

Spell performance

Although the game could always run on a "toaster" hitches and frame-spikes during spell heavy moments weren't uncommon. This is now a thing of the past.

Image

Next stop?

Work continues on I Am Overburdened. The planned content expansion pack is shaping up nicely. So far, I deliberately kept concrete info about it to the minimum since I'm still really bad at estimating the work left and I would like it to be a surprising and bigger release. This means the upcoming few updates will be similar to this and the last one (just a bunch of tiny changes), but I'm going to start teasing the new features in the following weeks ;)

Thanks for taking the time to read my post.
Take care!
User avatar
Rydon
24-bit
 
Posts: 118
Joined: Thu Oct 18, 2012 6:26 pm
Location: TN

Re: I am Overburdened [devlog]

by Rydon Fri Jun 14, 2019 9:49 pm

Hey Spidii thanks for the update. I wanted to ask, do you see a correlation with the time you are putting in on updates/"dlc" to more people buying the game? Is it worth it to continue on the game from a monetary perspective or are you wanting to get the game to a certain "threshold" before you call it done?
User avatar
Spidi777
16-bit
 
Posts: 62
Joined: Fri Mar 03, 2017 4:13 pm
Location: Budapest, Hungary

Re: I am Overburdened [devlog]

by Spidi777 Mon Jun 17, 2019 10:09 am

Hi Rydon!

Continuing to make and release updates do seem to increase my weekly sales and the interest towards the game a little, but the project is still at a loss overall.
I have future plans with I Am Overburdened. I'm working towards releasing it on multiple platforms which is more of a "for profit" endeavor though. So I'm making these updates primarily for the existing (and hopefully future) players and for creative reasons (game becomes even better with each iteration).

Let me know if you are interested in knowing more.
Cheers!
User avatar
Spidi777
16-bit
 
Posts: 62
Joined: Fri Mar 03, 2017 4:13 pm
Location: Budapest, Hungary

Re: I am Overburdened [devlog]

by Spidi777 Tue Jun 25, 2019 8:06 pm

Hi there!

So it came to pass, that only a tiny update gets completed within two weeks while working on another way bigger project :D
Hopefully, the user interface enhancements in I Am Overburdened version 1.2.3. will be appreciated still.

The book of monsters

The biggest (albeit functionally neglectable) change is the new "Book of Monsters" layout. Now the unlocked monsters can be explored using a scrollable grid just like in the case of the "Tome of Artifacts". It looks much less crammed + this was a necessary change for the future ;)

Image

Yep, this also means new monsters will join the party with the upcoming bigger content update (currently it looks like 4 to be more exact) and for this to happen the presentation had to be changed beforehand to accommodate.

Scroll madness

All the scroll-bars (not just the new monsters book one) were updated to handle up/down clicks too + screens where scrolling grids reacted to mouse movement (Stash, Treasury), were fixed since they could produce horrible noises with the quickly changing focused artifacts.

Image

Nearby beasts

How could I forget about this feature?! The same thing was implemented for the "Tome of Artifacts" with nearby items long ago, but somehow I missed this one. Opening the "Book of Monsters" next to an enemy now selects it immediately.

Image

Tome hot-keys

I also added hot-keys for accessing the tomes (Left Ctrl + A for the "Tome of Artifacts", Left Ctrl + M for the "Book of Monsters") with only one press as they may be opened semi-frequently during play. The input guide was updated to reflect these changes.

Image

In-game inventory on steroids!

A real nemesis of mine. I could not find a good way to notify the player about nearby items so far. I tried multiple things in the past (some even made it into the game), but I was never satisfied.
I think I got it now? I really like the current version. Let me know what you think!

Image

Little development history

One thing I tried long ago was changing the color palette of the slots which may be affected by a neighbor item pickup. Empty slots became lighter and used slots became red. I scrapped this approach because I could not find good enough color variants and it generally did not look that useful.

Image

To give at least some help to the players I decided to add in-world slot notifications. I liked them quite a lot so I released this feature a while ago, but I admit that functionally it was not best (e.g.: with a full inventory the slot icons don't help too much :| )...

Image

Then it hit me! Don't change the slots I have to focus on, change the ones I don't have to focus on. May sound counter-intuitive, but it worked way better than my first color based attempt :)

Image

It wasn't a ~perfect solution though. I just could not pinpoint the best time when to fade in and out unrelated slots. It looked a bit chaotic. With some iteration, I worked it out though. If there is a rapid change just forget the whole thing (disable the feature) so it doesn't bother the player and only fade out the unneeded slots if the player stays still a little nearby an item (or items).

Summer Sale

In the meantime I Am Overburdened also joined the Summer Sale!

Image

You can buy it at Steam or at itch.io for dirt cheap (50% Off - 2.49$, may vary based on region).

Image Image

What's next?

This is the first "teaser" update where changes related to the expansion pack crawled into the official build of the game and I shared tiny but concrete info about what is to come. Expect a few more updates like this in the upcoming weeks, but soon (hopefully really soon) I will unleash a bigger and better I Am Overburdened upon the world :)

Thank you very much for following my progress and for all your support.
Stay tuned!
User avatar
Spidi777
16-bit
 
Posts: 62
Joined: Fri Mar 03, 2017 4:13 pm
Location: Budapest, Hungary

Re: I am Overburdened [devlog]

by Spidi777 Tue Jul 23, 2019 7:32 pm

Hello everyone!

This entry will be a bit more personal and full of rambling about game development in real life and how come making a tiny bug-fix update for a game takes a whole month. Stay awhile, because if you can put up with my whining, you are going to read some real advice ;)

The unexpected

Image

Around a month ago severe cartilage damage and bone wear (arthrosis) was diagnosed in my right wrist-bone(s). This is a permanent change. One that quite possibly will heavily affect my future :(

I always had problems with my hand, we could call it chronic pain I guess, but it never was so frequent or so drastic that I thought something could be really wrong...
In middle school, I thought it must be my hobbies. A lot of Diablo :) and other games plus art (both classical and digital).
In university, I thought it must be my studies. My hobbies stayed with me and I started programming multiple hours daily.
As an employed programmer, software became my full-time job and I thought it must be my life-style. I started pouring hours after work into game development and art daily because I really wanted to make games, not just business software.

Image

Probably you are rolling your eyes by now, that I must be crazy for not taking care of myself, but I'm pretty sure if you are reading this you may have a similar history and of course I always did everything I could to heal. I always took sufficient rest, sometimes totally stopping these activities for a few days taking medicinal products to recover, plus in the last few years, I used various supporters to help my hands during work.
I never experienced wild long-lasting pains.

Except for 5 weeks ago.

Image

I heard it called pianist disease by a Doc and it is fairly common amongst musicians, artists, programmers, essentially anyone using their fingers and wrists excessively for work.

I've been doing physiotherapy and taking medication during the last month besides keeping my hand in a splint and barely using it at all. It is better now. I only experience pain if I disobey the "try not to use your right hand!" rule :P
Doctors told me that the pain will become manageable, but surgery seems to be necessary if I want to use it again for work...

Yep, you guessed it well. Even though I'm right-handed (was?) and relatively fast at typing (was!) writing this entry took me a while because I used my left hand only. That is how a tiny bug-fix update takes a month :D

Now onto the advice part:
Life will throw unexpected things at you. Even if you are at a point where everything seems to click and nothing can stop you, I'm pretty sure there is something that can. Take care of yourself and if you happen to experience similar things consult with a doctor to see if you can prevent bigger problems down the line.

The update

Since players discovered some glaring issues lately and I just managed to repair a few long-standing problems, I decided to put out a build with important fixes in it ASAP as version 1.2.4.

Not saved

Image

Sadly the path was not "ensured" (existence of directories) in all cases when saving the game. I estimate, that this could affect quite a few people, but not many reported it so far on any of the channels for the game. I hope this means it worked for most people and not many run into it :?

If you did lose a save I'm really sorry. Please accept my apology and know that now it is fixed and works as intended.

Hallucinated boss

Image

Some items in the game are totally insane and their combinations, well let just say they can lead to weird outcomes :P
One of these is the "Carnival Mask" which can turn monsters into hallucinations. It cannot be triggered on the boss level, as there are no other monsters around the boss itself. Except when you have an item on you which can summon monsters in certain situations. Mix in some chemical X and bang! The boss can easily turn into a hallucination, preventing the player from completing the run. Funny thing is that I already had a configuration coded for items to optionally disable them against certain enemy types (e.g.: the boss), but I probably thought this could not happen.
Fixed!

Left-handed

Image

Due to the underlying technology I used the game could not support left-handed mouse usage (left and right buttons switched in the operating system). I swapped out parts of the tech and fixed this problem. As you can guess I only realized the existence of the issue when I myself started using my mouse in this mode :|
To all the left-handed people in the world who would have loved playing I Am Overburdened with a mouse: I'm sorry for not realizing this before!

Focus on what you are doing!

Image

There were some reports about the game occasionally capturing mouse input even if its window is not in focus. I tried fixing this before, but I never had the complete picture about what is going wrong. I'm still not sure if it is fully fixed, but I could reproduce a case when it occurred and with the input tech change, I could correct this problem too.

Special thanks to all the community members who reported and helped in the diagnostics of these issues.

Is this the end?!

This slowed me to a crawl (no pun intended), but there is no way I'm stopping game development :)
I just wasn't prepared for it. Neither physically nor mentally. It will take some time getting used to it, but my left-hand dexterity is getting better each day and hopefully, surgery will further improve the state of things later on.
It is uncertain now how long it will take, but I will follow through my plans and deliver the content expansion pack for I Am Overburdened.

Thank you very much for reading my post and for all your support.
Take care!
User avatar
marurun
Moderator
 
Posts: 9535
Joined: Sat May 06, 2006 8:51 am
Location: Cleveland, OH

Re: I am Overburdened [devlog]

by marurun Tue Jul 23, 2019 8:32 pm

Aw, that sucks, man. Typing left handed only is balls. You know, for non-programming stuff, it might be time to hook up a microphone and narrate to your computer. That seems to be standard in most PCs these days. Good luck!
B/S/T thread
My Classic Games Collection
My Steam Profile
The PC Engine Software Bible Forum, with Shoutbox chat - the new Internet home for PC Engine fandom.
User avatar
Rydon
24-bit
 
Posts: 118
Joined: Thu Oct 18, 2012 6:26 pm
Location: TN

Re: I am Overburdened [devlog]

by Rydon Wed Jul 24, 2019 8:13 am

Spidii
Sorry about your wrist. That is a big change to get used to. Keep at it though, you can get through this kind of thing. I have developed several physical anomalies within my wrists from over indulging in musical and technical things, like ganglion cyst and other things that impede progress. I always try to think about how the guy who drew Dilbert got some weird disorder where his hand started shaking when he tried to draw comics. He says that he eventually, "hacked" his brain, and would only touch the paper with a pen for a few seconds, which would be enough time to not allow it to shake. You might not be able to do that, but it might help to think about.
Anyway, glad you are still working on the game. I hope you create another one as well!

Rydon
Return to Creator's Corner

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest