Hey there, great to see ya! How’s everything going? Had a good Halloween?
Oh, me? I’m just writing the October 2019 update for 8-Bit Adventures 2! …Yes, I know it’s the 2nd of November. For some reason, that’s just the way I’ve ended up doing this. Eh, don't think too much about it. The months go by so quickly now haha. But enough small talk with myself – let’s get into it!
First off, Happy Halloween for the other night! I posted this little GIF on the actual day (via Twitter @CriticalGamesAU), but in case anyone missed it…
In 8-Bit Adventures 2, you'll find ghosts and ghouls galore! But despite all the fiendish foes you'll face, on this Hallows' Eve, I thought a stroll amongst the graves might be a more appropriate treat...
But these ain't your average, mindless Zombies. They may be maggot-ridden, but they're on a mission - to stop you from reaching their master, no matter the cost! Poor guy - that looks like it hurts...
Progress, Pictures, Dungeons, and Combo Abilities!
This month will probably be a little light on the details, but I always like to show off a new batch of screenshots and animated GIFs! I’m approaching the end of testing what I consider ‘Act 1’ of the game (based on a 3 Act structure), so if you’re hyper concerned about spoilers…well, this update should be okay, but we’re getting to a point where I’m being extra mindful of what I show – while also trying to keep things interesting haha.
Oh, and don’t mind the names for Warrior/Thief/Mage – these images are taken from my personal save file (they’re actually the same names I used when testing the first game too!).
Jerram (the artist) has now totally, fully, 100% finished his work on 8-Bit Adventures 2, so give him a round of applause! He’s done an absolutely incredible job, and a lot of my time in October was spent implementing the ending assets he’s made, as well as many other odds and ends which enhance the look of the game, and frankly make it feel polished and complete – such as the final battle transition effect (which I’ll definitely be showing in the near future!).
We’ve still been contending with some very tricky bugs, but Sufyan (the programmer) has been hard at work taking care of them. There’s still plenty more to do (I just ran into one a couple of days ago where every time I defended in a particular battle, my character would get faster XD), but we’re on the road to making 8-Bit Adventures 2 airtight by release!
One of the dungeons I worked on this past month is the Ocean Cave – which is so dark, that unless you’re standing near a light source, you can’t see! These battles are pitch black and enemies appear only as vague outlines – which actually alters their moveset a little. To even the playing field, you'll need to lead them close to one of the many torches before starting the battle. This will let you fight them under optimal conditions, helping you see and revealing their true forms!
But if you do get stuck in the dark, don’t worry – Emma is blind, and fights using her other senses, so she’ll be your secret weapon! If you get caught like this, it’s usually best to put Charlie on support, using Items or Abilities to aid her. But the monsters here are no joke (well, power-wise anyway =P), so be careful and try to put yourself in the best position possible!
Another thing I wanted to briefly touch upon is team attacks! In 8-Bit Adventures 2, we have Combo (2 people) and Trio (3 people) Abilities which combine your party members’ various skills. To gain one of these special team-up attacks, both characters must have learnt specific Abilities. For example, Love’s Shield requires Thief to have learnt First Aid, and Warrior to have learnt Shield Wall.
These abilities can be activated by any of the participating characters (except Robot – he functions a little differently), however they also drain AP/MP from everyone involved - so be careful you don’t overuse them. Otherwise, your whole party might end up running on empty!
Also a minor mention, but the Escape Amulet from the first game returns in 8-Bit Adventures 2 (it’s one of the things I set up this month)! If you ever need to get back to the entrance of a dungeon in a hurry, just open up your Key Items and use the Escape Amulet to zip straight back to the entrance. Leaving the dungeon will re-spawn all of its enemies though (at least, under normal circumstances), so you’ll have to decide if it’s worth the risk!
That’s All Folks!
To make sure you don’t miss any news in future, I recommend following @CriticalGamesAU on Twitter, as that’s the best way I’ve found to keep up-to-date!
And don't forget to visit the Critical Games Creator Page: https://store.steampowered.com/curator/33038547 Follow that page or wishlist the game to be notified when 8-Bit Adventures 2 is finally released!
As usual, I’m afraid it’s not the update we’ve all been waiting for – but I just want you guys to know that I’m still here and doing my best to get everything done. And you know, I’m really happy with how everything’s turning out! This might be a bit of a strange highlight, but emerging onto the Xanthus Desert section of the World Map for the first time felt really satisfying. I know I made the thing, but there’s something about a fully realised World Map that still just feels *right*. I’m hoping to deliver RPG veterans a lot of those moments – not just references that play to nostalgia, but moments that capture the style and feel of games long past in a new context.
And I guess on a grander level, I hope to tell a positive story about the things that really matter in our lives; one that embodies both a hopeful optimism, and a sense that we can overcome any obstacle. I feel these elements – the sense of “striving for a better tomorrow”, as Hironobu Sakaguchi once put it - were key to making so many JRPGs into beloved classics. We’ll see how I do, but essentially I want people to leave my games feeling happy and re-energised, rather than frustrated or depressed. In these troubled times, I feel like making people smile is the most helpful thing I can do with my work. Hopefully 8-Bit Adventures 2 will make you smile too! =) ~Josh