Building A Community

First, let me show you the official Artillery Royale logo!
If you ask me, it’s beautiful.

Made by Jean-Baptiste Dessaux, idea by Damien Balada

Community

Now let’s talk about Artillery Royale community. If you follow the game you now that we have a discord server where people can get news and give feedbacks about the ongoing alpha: https://discord.com/invite/fq78teW

Growing a community is hard, starting like me from nothing and nowhere — I don’t have any pre-existing network — I’m often wondering how I can get people look at the game and more than that, join the discussion.

On the game side, the technical base is working, know I’m going to iterate and add content. More weapons, more features etc. but what I’d love is to have player engaged in the process, so I’d know that this game will be enjoyed as much as I enjoy making it.

You will probably see me all around the Internet posting on Twitter, YouTube and other game related platforms. I don’t know how to do that, but I’ll report on that blog in a few months, hopefully with some results!

News

Right now I have some pleasant news, first Artillery Royale is coming soon on Steam (as a “Coming Soon” page) and because — or thanks to — the hard work I had to put in that store listing (Steam is asking a bunch of assets and other questions) I have a bunch of nice screenshots, banner, icon and… an official trailer!

It’s not one of my specialty + the game is alpha, so is the trailer, but still I’m proud of it

You can find me on YouTube too, I’m not yet sure of which channel I’ll choose, but I let you know! Follow and subscribe to everything, and we will see which platform wins.

Meanwhile, it’s Discord where all the news are aggregated, and where future player can take part in the development process!

Chess Battle is now Artillery Royale!

Chess Battle renamed into Artillery Royale

Finding a name is a very hard task, and for a non-native speaker even harder.
I thought I had something with Chess Battle, it’s distinct, has some meaning and straight forward to spell. Not bad.

Unfortunately on some very early blind play tests people got confused about the name.
Some warned me that they were not good at the chess game and were hopping that the game did not need much chess skill.

RED ALERT!

Even if at the start, the chess theme sounded great for me, I did not think about that.

A game of chess is hard, and for most people, not even fun to play with. In that way Chess Battle sends a wrong signal about the game. And to be honest, it’s not that much chess related.

So here we are: Chess Battle is now called Artillery Royale!

Six minutes of gameplay

I wanted to give you some news, everything is going well and the development is progressing as expected!

You would get more real time news on the Artillery Royale discord, but I also want to maintain this blog so you choose your favorite media 🙂

Six minutes of Artillery Royale gameplay

It’s still an early alpha here, the final game will feature multiple character classes, more weapon, more map type, etc.

Doubts

When I spend too many hours on Artillery Royale trying to solve a problem or even iterating, sometimes I fall into periods of doubts.

I play my own game and I don’t see what I’m looking for. It’s not fun, not pretty, not well balanced. Full of bugs. In a word: it’s not good. From here it often escalates to the point where I realize the amount of work left. I feel overwhelmed. I don’t know where I’m heading to.

Mentally it’s hard to handle. The only solution I found for those moments is to step back a few hours, or even days. And hopefully, when I’m back to work it’s gone and I’m full of faith again (so far it worked like that).

I guess looking back at the accomplished work help too, hence my previous post about current progress.

I thought it’s important to share those bad feelings too because as indie developers we face many challenges, but self-doubting seems to be one of the worst (at least for me).

Do not hesitate to take a break!

On that note, it’s holiday time for me, see you in a couple of weeks.

🏖

First months progress

From the idea, through prototypes, all the way to a playable demo!
Let’s see how far we are after 4 months.

A little bit of history: Artillery Royale started in January, I mean, it’s been in my head for a long time but I started to write down some stuff in January 2020 and I decided in May to give it a go by working on it full time.

Also, because I know projects work better with a scope, I arbitrarily decided to fix a deadline for the first playable demo to September 2020.

May 2020

In may I was playing with Unity own Physics engine and thought it would be easy. I also used an asset that allows getting destructible sprite very easily but, rests assured, all this will be soon discarded.

I also had a first prototype of map generator based on bitmap at the time. See details here.

June 2020

If I remember well, in June I had my first game over the Internet with a friend. It was laggy as hell and I did not see how it could improve with my technical choices at the time. So I discarded all the networking part too.

I still was trying to get Unity Physics engine work the way I wanted, and it was quite convincing. I built a specifics scene to test all the parameters and stuff.

This is when I decided to implement the distance limit, here with a halo that prevents you to move more than a specific distance. After testing it for a while, I’m pretty sure it won’t end up in the game in that form.

I also iterated on the map generator, positioning destructible objects and ammo/health bonus boxes.

July 2020

What an exciting month! In parallel to coding the game, I was also looking for a designer to help me work on the game. I found someone that has the exact style I wanted and he accepted to work for me.

We can see in those videos some of his concept art. Except that I started to tackle the hard problem: implementing my own Physics engine.

August 2020

With Jean-Baptiste, we settle down on Anima2D for the character animation and it’s pretty cool because I had some time to test some sort of ragdoll animations — something I always wanted to have — on this video, it looks stupid and full of bug but the final implementation will be great. I also worked on my own Character movement controller.

In the last video, we can see that I started to integrate the final art from Jean-Baptiste. The map generator has to be tweaked a bit more too.

To be honest with me I’m not even halfway to have something ready but I hope that in September I’ll get some sort of demo.

Fingers crossed