Bosses, Abilities, and Items, Oh My! – Joshua Pelkington | Programming Intern Dev-Log #4

They Call Me the ORK Whisperer

This past week some great stuff has been accomplished. Pretty much all of it was involved with the ORK Framework, Monochrome’s main resource for handling the RPG aspects in the game. Its always a good time jumping into ORK and learning new ways to work to manage complex systems. Some of the key features that will be touched on are Boss Battles, Setting up special abilities and implementing many fun new items!

The First of Many

The Gackle is the first Boss Otto will encounter in the wonderful world of Monochrome. Now normally when you hear the word “Boss” in a game, you expect a challenging foe that comes with a memorable and exciting battle. Gackle is no exception! To help get him to this state, I was tasked with setting up Otto’s main ability in the fight.

Normally Otto uses Strum, an ability that raises the Affinity of the target in an attempt to recruit them with a Joke. Gackle is no ordinary foe, and cannot simply be amused into submission. However Otto’s Strum ability will not become obsolete! Progress was made so that it targets all of Gackle’s Fans and helps Otto bring them over to the player’s side during the battle. It’s an exciting start to getting this battle to feel unique!

Boss enemies like Gackle need to be powerful and bring unique abilities to the table. The brains of this operation is the Battle AI, powered by the wonderful ORK Framework. I was able to setup a fairly simple one for now, giving Gackle some decision-making when it comes to grabbing your Fans to add to his troupe, or buffing himself when his Motivation runs out. He even gets angry when you are about to win, and throws out non-stop Garde-dropping attacks! When the battle is eventually finished, the work done on it so far will be a great step in making Gackle memorable and unique.

Items Galore!

This part of the week has been my favorite task, it being to setup a whole bunch of battle items for Otto to use that impact encounters with the various enemies. I had previously never heard what they were, and I have to say I am a big fan of the designs! Here are a few of my favorite:

The process of adding a new item into the ORK Framework is pretty simple, at least from the ones I have full implemented so far. Here is a simplified structure for how I have been setting these items up:

1. Make a new Item in the ORK Item Database: Easy as it sounds, just make a new empty item.

2. Add the proper Name, Icon, and Description: I’m lucky enough to have this mostly laid out for me in another doc, so I just add what is setup.

3. Determine and Set the possible targets, whether it is Self, Allies or Enemies: Ultimately this is just a few button clicks, but it largely determines the use of the item in a battle.

4. Add the Effect for the proper targets: This is the fun part, as there are many features to get some complex effects made for each item. Some use Status Effects to give a lasting bonus or debuff. Some just modify the stats instantly. Either way ORK makes it simple for me.

And that’s it! The new item is ready to be used by Otto on his adventure! I have only finished a few so far, but the only part that can take a while is the effect, so I am hoping to knock those out over this next week.

What’s Next Week Lookin’ Like?

At least for the next few days I am going to be finishing up these items, making sure their effects are working properly and fixing any bugs that crop up. Looking forward to making them all feel unique and giving them the style that Monochrome is all about.

A Cool Thing I Found

Click Me!

Found this neat little subreddit a few days ago, and its been fun looking through posts, seeing what people on the internet think about how systems could be programmed in popular games. Gets me hyped to work on my own personal projects, as I am a huge fan of trying to code complex systems.

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