Exilian

Exilian Projects => Computer Game Development - The Indie Alley => Bigosaur => Topic started by: bigosaur on March 16, 2016, 05:28:40 PM

Title: Son of a Witch: Devlog and general discussion
Post by: bigosaur on March 16, 2016, 05:28:40 PM
(http://bigosaur.com//blog/images/witch-0002-forest-room.png)

In the past 7 months I have been planning a new game to make. It will be a multiplayer action brawler like Castle Crashers with cartoony graphics. The main problem I have with CC is that once you complete it, there's no incentive to play more. So, I decided to combine the brawler mechanics with roguelike elements: permadeath, procedural generation of levels, items, enemies, etc. and non-modal gameplay (esp. imporant if you have 4 players playing).

I have most of the concepts on paper and spreadsheets and some 60% of the graphics is ready (still need to work on animations and special effects a lot). Current plan includes: 12 heroes, 44 monsters, 16 bosses and 6 different environments (forest, battlements, castle, dungeon, catacombs and a special ice level). Additionally, 50+ different weapons and items will be available to loot and use for the first version, and more planned later.

There will be 3 distinct play styles available, focusing on melee, ranged or magic combat. The player's starting class would determine the proficiency (i.e. base damage and effect modifiers) but the player can upgrade during the game and become multi-class if desired (and RNG does not get in the way). Melee combat is going to work similar to Castle Crashers with additional "rage" mechanics, which is a meter that fills up and you can use a special attack then.

The levels will be laid out like rooms in the Binding of Isaac with boss fight at the end of each level. The mana system and magic items will work like batteries in Isaac (i.e. you need to complete a couple of rooms before reusing the special magic) and the regular magic users can constantly shoot various weak projectiles similar to tears in Isaac.

I plan to post my progress every day, so stay tuned :)

Latest cool .gif:

(http://bigosaur.com/blog/images/witch-0017-magic-backwalk.gif)

Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac (w/ gifs)
Post by: bigosaur on March 16, 2016, 05:29:21 PM
The Story

(http://bigosaur.com/blog/images/witch-0004-logo.png)

You mom is a witch. Together with your brother, the three of you live in a forest. One day, the king's soldiers show up at your home and take her away without any explanation. As a player, you can choose one (or both in co-op) of her sons to go on a rescue mission. One of the sons is a young sorcerer and the other one is a warrior.

In the meantime, someone has stolen a powerful ancient artifact from the goblins who live in the nearby forest. Angry goblin patrols are searching the forest for the thief.

You need to avoid or fight the goblins to reach the castle, and then find a way to get inside. On your adventure, you can rescue or recruit other heroes to help you on your quest. (up to 4 players will be able to play in co-op mode, with 12 different playable characters).

Once inside the castle, you try to reach the dungeon hoping that the mom is locked up and alive. Meanwhile, the goblins track the thief to the king's castle gate, and they demand their artifact back. The king soldiers cannot find the thief and aren't able to produce the artifact. The goblins demand to come inside and find it themselves, but the king refuses. The goblin siege begins and soon they manage to break down the defenses and come inside... now you need to fight both the goblins and the guards. They fight against each other too.

But the real reason why your mother was taken away remains a mystery until you find her...
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac (w/ gifs)
Post by: bigosaur on March 16, 2016, 05:30:02 PM
Add a bunch of goblins and the action becomes intense. I have improved the AI, so now they don't walk over each other anymore. They are trying to surround the player from all sides.

(http://bigosaur.com/blog/images/witch-0018-action.png)

Using melee weapons really feels like playing a true brawler game like Castle Crashers.
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac (w/ gifs)
Post by: bigosaur on March 16, 2016, 05:30:45 PM
Special Magic Powers

One of the characters available at the start of the game is a mage who has a Snake Staff as the primary weapon. The Snake Staff fires basic blue magic orbs and has a special ability to imbue poison to weapons. It can imbue poison to itself as well, so you get to fire poisoned orbs.

(http://bigosaur.com/blog/images/witch-0023-poison.gif)

The amount of poison damage depends on the player's magic proficiency. At 100% it's going to be 3 poison damage every 1.5 seconds (it only shows 2 in the screenshot, because I messed around with player stats and it wasn't at 100%). If a player is not very good with magic (say, a knight has only 30%), it will only do one poison damage in the same interval.

The poison does not kill, but it can completely drain the health points, and then it only takes one hit to finish off the enemy. The same goes for player characters.

It can be also used to make swords poisonous, or even some more deadly combinations: for example, if you find a fireball staff, you can make it poisonous as well, and it will shoot fireballs that set enemy on fire and poison him at the same time.
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac (w/ gifs)
Post by: bigosaur on March 16, 2016, 05:31:25 PM
You can find various potions in the world. Some are dropped from fallen enemies, some are found in chests, some are stored in barrels and boxes, some even hidden under the rocks which you will be able to destroy with bombs. And you will be able to buy some in shops as well.

Here's a small health potion. At the top, you can see what it looks like in player's inventory, and underneath is how you pick it up.

(https://bigosaur.com/blog/images/witch-0025-potion2.png)

It heals 20 hit points, which is equal to one red bar. You can stack multiple potions of the same kind, so they only take one inventory slot.

(http://bigosaur.com/blog/images/witch-watch-0026-potionanim.gif)

I made a spearate magic particle effect animation for smaller items like this one.
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac (w/ gifs)
Post by: Cuddly Khan on March 16, 2016, 08:12:25 PM
This game looks so good! I love both CC and Isaac and if this game is like a mix of the two than I can't wait!!
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac (w/ gifs)
Post by: bigosaur on March 17, 2016, 07:12:06 PM
While toying with a nice pose to drink potions...

(http://bigosaur.com/blog/images/witch-0027-drinkprepare.png)

...I figured I need to remove the cork (plug) from the vial. Looks pretty good now:

(http://bigosaur.com/blog/images/witch-0027-drink.gif)

Added a small emotional touch to it ;)
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac (w/ gifs)
Post by: Jubal on March 17, 2016, 07:29:42 PM
Minor quibble, but surely once the drink leaves the character's lips the vial should then be empty?

Looks nice though - the staff thingy is pretty :)
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac (w/ gifs)
Post by: bigosaur on March 18, 2016, 10:19:16 PM
Minor quibble, but surely once the drink leaves the character's lips the vial should then be empty?

Yes, that one bothers me as well. It's still work in progress, I plan to fix it soon. Thanks  :)
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac (w/ gifs)
Post by: bigosaur on March 18, 2016, 10:19:59 PM
Poison buff animation is complete:

(http://bigosaur.com/blog/images/witch-0028-poisonbuff.gif)

Hope you like the bubbles.
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac (w/ gifs)
Post by: Jubal on March 18, 2016, 10:49:39 PM
It's nice. :)

...and I'm now actually wondering where the idea that poison is bubbly and light green comes from. It's so common in games that it's what our brains expect now, but where did that start? I'm pretty sure most actual poisons aren't bubbly, and aren't a sickly green colour either. I guess potions being bubbly might come from Shakespeare (Hubble, Bubble), but I've no idea about the colouration.
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac (w/ gifs)
Post by: Glaurung on March 18, 2016, 11:57:09 PM
I think that the idea of poison being green has quite a long history, though I'm not sure I can pin it down at the moment. In modern fantasy it goes back at least as far as C. S. Lewis' The Silver Chair: as the Witch transforms into a serpent, she is described as "green as poison". Some trawling with Google suggests that phrase is well-established, presumably with a older history than 1953.
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac (w/ gifs)
Post by: Cuddly Khan on March 19, 2016, 05:27:45 AM
I don't like how the staff changes hands at the start of the animation... but that's just a small problem. :P
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac (w/ gifs)
Post by: bigosaur on March 19, 2016, 08:26:37 PM
I don't like how the staff changes hands at the start of the animation... but that's just a small problem. :P

You will be able to hold sword in one hand and the staff in the other and then use the staff to buff the sword with poison... let's just say it got really complicated in my code and it was easier to always lift the staff with the left hand ;)

Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac (w/ gifs)
Post by: bigosaur on March 19, 2016, 08:26:59 PM
Here's an improved potion drinking animation:

(http://bigosaur.com/blog/images/witch-0029-heal.gif)

and a nice particle effect for healing.
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac (w/ gifs)
Post by: Jubal on March 19, 2016, 09:14:25 PM
Nice work :)

Also, minor friendly admin note: if you can try to avoid double-posting that would be good - if you post something then find you need to add extra content to the post, there's an "edit button available for the purpose. :)
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac (w/ gifs)
Post by: bigosaur on March 20, 2016, 10:03:46 PM
I just made this nice swoosh in Gimp for the sword swing attack.

(http://bigosaur.com/blog/images/witch-0030-swordswing.png)


It can also be used partially (on the first strike frame):

(http://bigosaur.com/blog/images/witch-0030-s2.png)


If you press attack button during the up-swing, the hero also does the return-swing to get back to initial position:

(http://bigosaur.com/blog/images/witch-0031-swing2.png)

Animation coming soon...
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac (w/ gifs)
Post by: bigosaur on March 20, 2016, 10:14:12 PM
Also, minor friendly admin note: if you can try to avoid double-posting that would be good - if you post something then find you need to add extra content to the post, there's an "edit button available for the purpose. :)

Do you mean those cases when I replied to other people, or when I add more images?

If it's the latter - how does the pagination work? I plan to start posting some .gifs soon, and most of those will be about 5MB each, so having them all in a single post could make a really heavy page. Thanks.
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac (w/ gifs)
Post by: Cuddly Khan on March 20, 2016, 10:56:18 PM
He means when you post and then post again right after without someone else posting in between, like what you did just then.
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac (w/ gifs)
Post by: Jubal on March 21, 2016, 12:50:08 AM
^What he said. :)

Essentially there's no difference for loading splitting GIFs between posts or keeping them in a single post (unless you happen to split them across pages that way, but it's not worth bothering with that). I'm not sure if spoiler tags do anything with image load... I'd be surprised if we have terribly big issues though, I've never had serious page load problems with Exilian, the site software itself is pretty lightweight. If your animated GIFs are really long, though, why do them as GIFs rather than YT videos out of interest?

Anyway, onto more interesting stuff; yes, that is a very lovely sword swoosh and is appropriately swooshy :D
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac (w/ gifs)
Post by: bigosaur on March 21, 2016, 10:01:07 PM
I've never had serious page load problems with Exilian, the site software itself is pretty lightweight.

I was just thinking about visitors with lower bandwidth, 20 gifs 5MB each is 100MB for a single page.

If your animated GIFs are really long, though, why do them as GIFs rather than YT videos out of interest?

The gifs are short, however my game runs at 60fps. A simple 2-second 480x270 .gif takes about 5MB. It makes no sense to upload 2 second videos to YouTube. But nevermind, I'll avoid doing back to back posting and use the edit button. Hopefully, the content will be good and replies from other forum members will space it out ;)

Anyway, onto more interesting stuff; yes, that is a very lovely sword swoosh and is appropriately swooshy :D

Thanks.

And now, it's hack&slash time:

(http://bigosaur.com/blog/images/witch-0032-fight.gif)

Goblins with shields cannot be attacked when they raise the shield, so you have to go around and attack from back:

(http://bigosaur.com/blog/images/witch-0032-sneak-from-back.gif)

When you defeat them, you can pick up their sword and use it:

(http://bigosaur.com/blog/images/witch-0032-swing-goblin-sword.gif)

When enemies are knocked down, you can stomp them or smash your weapon to the ground to hit them real hard. Of course, when an enemy is on the ground, the hitbox is different, so I'm fine tuning that now.

(http://bigosaur.com/blog/images/witch-0033-stomp-devel.gif)

You will be able to run and jump from a short distance. Unlike the knight, the mage jumps because he's too light to do ground smashing attack.

(http://bigosaur.com/blog/images/witch-0034-stomp-devel2.gif)

This looks so cool, I might add a long-jump competition to the game.

Most swords will have dashing as special rage attack:

(http://bigosaur.com/blog/images/witch-0035-dash.gif)

Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac (updated Mar26)
Post by: Jubal on March 26, 2016, 10:54:14 PM
I like the idea of a long jump competition - having add-ons and things outside the main hack and slash sections like that are always good :)

Can the shields be destroyed if you smash them enough?
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac (updated Mar26)
Post by: bigosaur on March 29, 2016, 11:31:22 PM
Can the shields be destroyed if you smash them enough?

Yes. Well, actually, you'd have to smash them many times. It's much faster to go around him and smack him from the the back as he doesn't turn while the shield is up. Anyway, here are some new updates:

Mega Rage Attack

Every melee weapon in the game has a special rage attack. Swords mostly have some kind of dashing, axes can be thrown, hammers will be able to call on help from the gods and clubs become 3 times bigger than usual and smash down the enemies:

(http://bigosaur.com/blog/images/witch-0038-megastrike.png)

Here's the animation:

(http://bigosaur.com/blog/images/witch-0039-megastrike.gif)

Telepathy potion

On your adventure, you will find different magic potions. These potions are colored differently on each playthrough. For example, blue potion can mean stronger magic in one game, and faster speed in the next game. You can discover their effect with an Identify scroll, or you can take a chance, drink and see what happens.

(http://bigosaur.com/blog/images/witch-0042-tele.png)

This one allows you to see the enemies in adjacent areas. (1B) means that the effect will wear of after one battle.
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on March 29, 2016, 11:40:16 PM
The rage attack looks fun :)

Do any potions have negative effects, and can they be thrown or only drunk?
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on March 31, 2016, 12:44:02 PM
Do any potions have negative effects, and can they be thrown or only drunk?

No throwing. About 35% potions have negative or mixed effects. Most negative effects are balanced out with a different positive in the same potion. For example, you can get Iron Flesh Potion that reduces your speed but makes you more resistant to hits. Or you can get Overdose Potion that fully heals you, but you get reversed controls for one battle. One of the potions I also plan is Barbarian Potion that increases Melee but reduces Magic. So, that one is great if you are a fighter, but if you play as a mage then it's negative.

Here are some other mysterious-potion effects.

(http://bigosaur.com/blog/images/witch-0042-potionfx2.png)

Magic skill determines the damage and size of magic projectiles, and effectiveness of magic caused effects like using magic to buff weapons with poison. The game will also feature magic scrolls and the player would need to have a certain magic skill threshold to be able to understand what the scroll does before using it. Of course, if you are a warrior, you could still read the scroll and activate its magic, but some of the scrolls have really bad effects.

Potions can also increase your base skills, even to the point where it would make sense to switch class. For example, if you buffed up archery skill and range a lot, it would be a good strategy to start using bows and arrows.

(http://bigosaur.com/blog/images/witch-0043-potionfx3.png)

(http://bigosaur.com/blog/images/witch-0045-barelsboxes.png)

Every game has some elements that are boring and unexcited to make but still important for player experience. Here are the boxes and barrels.

(http://bigosaur.com/blog/images/witch-0044-barrels.gif)

You can break barrels and boxes and find some items inside. Usually it's food and coins, but sometimes you may find keys, bombs, arrows, potions and other consumable items.

(http://bigosaur.com/blog/images/witch-0046-boxbreak.gif)

This was the first time I made animation of stuff breaking like this, so it was an interesting experience.
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: SaidaiSloth on March 31, 2016, 11:51:34 PM
This seemed really ambitious for a one person team so I was doubtful and I was expecting a 100% science based dragon mmo style situation, but this actually looks really cool.

Any words on a price? If the gameplay feels as good as these animations look, I'll make sure to check it out once it's released.
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on April 01, 2016, 08:03:12 AM
This seemed really ambitious for a one person team so I was doubtful and I was expecting a 100% science based dragon mmo style situation, but this actually looks really cool.

Thanks. That means a lot.

Any words on a price? If the gameplay feels as good as these animations look, I'll make sure to check it out once it's released.

I really don't know yet. All I know at this point is that I want to get this on Steam, possibly in Early Access because there's so many variables (esp. after the forest level which is planned in detail) and player input could be very valuable. I was thinking something like $5 for Early Access to allow people who support the game to get it for cheap, and then the price would rise as more content gets added, probably ending somewhere in the $15-$20 territory.

Or, if I see that the hype is not catching up, I might seek a publisher to help with the marketing and then it all depends on the deal I make with them...
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on April 01, 2016, 03:44:36 PM
Ah, OK, "trade off" potions sounds a good system - the barrel breaking anim is good too :)
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on April 01, 2016, 08:40:22 PM
Each level in the game will have one or more locked rooms with treasures.

(http://bigosaur.com/blog/images/witch-0048-lock.png)

You can unlock the rooms with keys or blast the doors open with bombs. Or you can use magic scrolls that open doors magically.

(http://bigosaur.com/blog/images/witch-0049-lockeddoor2.gif)

Unlocked doors are not controlled by monsters, so you can use them to escape from tight battles.
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on April 01, 2016, 11:36:57 PM
Will the locked rooms just be treasure piles? Or will there be other sorts of special room like in, say, pixel dungeon if you've played that?
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on April 02, 2016, 03:21:29 PM
Will the locked rooms just be treasure piles? Or will there be other sorts of special room like in, say, pixel dungeon if you've played that?

There will be different ones. All locked rooms will have treasure chests, but some will also have traps and guards that are protecting it.

There will be other special rooms, but those probably won't be locked. For example, different kinds of shops and also quest rooms, where you can interact with some NPCs.

Presenting Goblin Berseker:

(http://bigosaur.com/blog/images/witch-0050-goblinaxer.png)

This goblin combines ranged and melee into a single unit. His rage increases even without hitting an enemy and when the rage is full, he throws the axe towards the player. When up-close, he uses the axe to fight in classic melee strikes.

(http://bigosaur.com/blog/images/witch-0051-goblinaxer.gif)

Goblin Axe is a very desired weapon for warriors. It can be thrown from a distance. If your rage meter is full, the thrown axe is unstoppable and flies across the screen knocking everyone down.
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on April 02, 2016, 10:31:30 PM
Nice stuff :)

Will there be many mage-type enemies too?
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on April 03, 2016, 07:52:42 PM
Will there be many mage-type enemies too?

Not many, but there will be approximately one per faction. Goblin Shaman will use a voodoo doll do hurt you from distance, skeletons have two mages: one is using dark magic to create various effects like slow, curse, etc. and necromancer can raise dead skeletons during the battle. Thieves won't have a mage. On ice levels there will be an Ice Mage that can freeze the heroes and shoots ice balls. Knights get help from a mage that lives in the castle (still haven't figured out what kind of magic he will use) and Crystal Wizard is one of the bosses. Also, Medusa will have petrifying power, so if you consider that magic, then there's one more planned.

Anyway, I finished the Goblin Berserker. Here's the axe-throwing animation:

(http://bigosaur.com/blog/images/witch-0052-goblinaxing.gif)
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on April 03, 2016, 08:16:11 PM
The mage looks amusingly chilled out about all the axes thrown at him :P

And sounds good :)
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on April 04, 2016, 09:07:24 PM
I got the multiple shots working. Reminder, it's an effect of one of the potions:

(http://bigosaur.com/blog/images/witch-0052-magicsplit.png)

You get more shots, but each orb is weaker. When you start a game with mage you make 6 damage per orb. When split, each orb does 5 damage, but you fire two orbs at once, so that's 10 damage, a nice increase. Of course there are other ways to increase damage back up:

(http://bigosaur.com/blog/images/witch-0052-magicsplit.gif)

A good combo is when you add poison to it. You can easily poison multiple enemies at once:

(http://bigosaur.com/blog/images/witch-0052-poisonorbs.gif)
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on April 04, 2016, 11:22:22 PM
Can't remember if I already asked, but will you be able to have multiple potions active at once?
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on April 05, 2016, 08:50:42 PM
Can't remember if I already asked, but will you be able to have multiple potions active at once?

Yes. Some potions have long lasting effects, so only a couple of battles... you can have unlimited different buffs active at the same time.

Anyway, I'm testing my game engine to see how it behaves in big battles:

(http://bigosaur.com/blog/images/witch-0053-mayhem.png)

Two players, 15 enemies and it works as smooth as with an empty screen. The game will run on a 10-year-old Core2Duo CPU with integrated Intel graphics card at 60fps with smaller resolutions like 1366x768. For HD screens it pushes about 53 fps on that config, but if you have just a little bit stronger CPU or dedicated GPU like nVidia or AMD it will work just fine. It only requires OpenGL 1.1, so even some really old hardware will be able to run the game.

Axe throwin'

(http://bigosaur.com/blog/images/witch-0054-throwin.png)

As promised, you can pick up enemy weapons and use them. Goblin axe has a simple overhead strike attack mapped to fast attack button. Pressing Strong attack button throws it:

(http://bigosaur.com/blog/images/witch-0055-throwing.gif)

When your rage meter is full, you can use the sweeping mega throw attack:

(http://bigosaur.com/blog/images/witch-0056-refactoring.gif)
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on April 06, 2016, 10:26:26 PM
Nice :) Should be no problem for my new laptop, certainly!
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on April 07, 2016, 10:09:31 PM
Here are the magic scrolls. Of course, first comes the less interesting part, like picking them up, storing in inventory, etc.:

(http://bigosaur.com/blog/images/witch-0057-scrolls1.png)

And then comes the fun part, i.e. using them:

(http://bigosaur.com/blog/images/witch-0057-scrolls4.png)
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on April 07, 2016, 11:03:39 PM
Neat! (I feel like ideally the scrolls would be open when you "read" them, but I accept that may be too much of a faff and what you've got looks fine). Also, "peaceful" has only the one l at the end unless I'm mistaken. :)
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Clockwork on April 08, 2016, 09:32:43 AM
You're right Jub.


I like how this game is looking though. Really interested in the co-op ;)
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on April 09, 2016, 02:11:14 PM
Also, "peaceful" has only the one l at the end unless I'm mistaken. :)

Good catch. I fixed that right away. Thanks.

Here's the first boss: Ogre Mom:

(http://bigosaur.com/blog/images/witch-0058-bossogremom.png)

She can be challenging, especially for beginners. She will have several different attacks, the main one hitting you with that huge club:

(http://bigosaur.com/blog/images/witch-0060-ogremom1.png)

It shows zero damage, because the player is invulnerable during testing ;)

Update: Here's the animation. I still need to work on some dust effects on the ground where the club hits:

(http://bigosaur.com/blog/images/witch-0059-ogremomstrikes.gif)
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on April 10, 2016, 07:39:35 PM
I'd be interested to see more gameplay with the camera shake - it feel like it might be vibrating at slightly too high a frequency at the moment, but I'm not sure whether the gif is a good indication.

Looking forward to seeing the other attacks!
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on April 11, 2016, 11:39:27 PM
I'd be interested to see more gameplay with the camera shake - it feel like it might be vibrating at slightly too high a frequency at the moment, but I'm not sure whether the gif is a good indication.

The gif doesn't do it justice, it looks much better in the game.

Here's the second attack. If you try to pass behind her, you might get smacked in the back:

(http://bigosaur.com/blog/images/witch-0062-ogremom.png)

I'm also planning an arena for the boss fight. There will be a small building for goblin warriors to come out and help the Ogre and there's a catapult that you can use when the battle is over

(http://bigosaur.com/blog/images/witch-0063-bossroom.png)

The boss room will have a distinct door which cannot be blasted with bombs:

(http://bigosaur.com/blog/images/witch-0063-bossdoor.png)

The first level ends when you catapult yourself into the King's Castle:

(http://bigosaur.com/blog/images/witch-0063-ready.png)
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on April 13, 2016, 12:16:21 AM
Very nice, I approve of the catapult :D
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on April 16, 2016, 09:20:40 AM
There will be shops on each level, where you can buy various items like potions, bombs, scrolls, weapons, etc.

(http://bigosaur.com/blog/images/witch-0064-shop.png)

I plan to have a special potion shop that only sells potions and a pet shop that sells... well, pets.

(http://bigosaur.com/blog/images/witch-0065-shop.png)
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on April 17, 2016, 06:47:32 PM
Nice :) Though if that's the goblin shop, the pedestals do look a bit oddly neat compared to everything else the goblins make!
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on April 17, 2016, 08:01:29 PM
Nice :) Though if that's the goblin shop, the pedestals do look a bit oddly neat compared to everything else the goblins make!

Actually, it won't be a goblin shop, I just haven't got around to animate the shop keeper yet  :)

I got so many new elements, I guess it's time to build some variety of levels. Currently there are 15 different level layouts for the forest, but I plan to have at least 60 for the first alpha version:

(http://bigosaur.com/blog/images/witch-0066-levels.png)

I plan to have a playable demo by the end of May.

Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on April 17, 2016, 11:23:47 PM
Ahh, right :)

And goodness, 60 sounds a fair number - how many rooms do you play through in the forest levels?
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on April 19, 2016, 10:38:00 PM
And goodness, 60 sounds a fair number - how many rooms do you play through in the forest levels?

Forest levels have 10-15 rooms, depending on the number of players and procedural generator. Four of those are fixed: Starting room, Boss room, Treasure room and Shop. Well, not completely: there will be about 20 types of treasure rooms (some with enemies, some with traps) and 3 types of Shops (potions shop, pet shop, weapon shop). This leaves us with about 6-11 "regular" rooms per level. Regular rooms will be selected from that pool of 60.

Pyromancies

It's time to play with fire. One of the playable characters will be a fire mage, so I decided to play with various fire effects. Wands can shoot fireballs which explode and enemies can players can be set on fire and lose a lot of health while burning:

(http://bigosaur.com/blog/images/witch-0068-pyro.png)

Here's some animated action. The mage is still using the Snake Staff to fire fireballs, but there will be a special Fire Staff in the final game:

(http://bigosaur.com/blog/images/witch-0068-pyro.gif)
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on April 19, 2016, 11:11:38 PM
Yay, the first rule of adventuring in action! :D
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on April 22, 2016, 02:42:02 PM
Here's a cool combo. If you get both the Snake Staff (poison) and the Fireball Staff (fire), you can buff the Fireball Staff with poison to shoot poisonous fireballs:

(http://bigosaur.com/blog/images/witch-0067-green-flame.gif)

Enemies that get hit will be set on fire and poisoned at the same time. Somehow the burning animation is missing here, I need to fix that.
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on April 22, 2016, 06:30:50 PM
Could you make that have a green fire anim? That would be doubly cool.
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on April 23, 2016, 07:34:30 PM
Could you make that have a green fire anim? That would be doubly cool.

I think so. I'm already coloring the fireballs green, so it shouldn't be much trouble. Will try and see what it looks like.

In the meantime, I found another use for the fire animation:

Campfires are the first hazard in the game. If you step on it, you are set on fire for a couple of seconds, which is enough to deplete 80% of fully healed hero. At least, until you buff your hit points. The fire does not kill you ever, but it can lower your HP to just one point and then a single enemy hit will bring you down.

(http://bigosaur.com/blog/images/witch-0069-campfire.png)

Enemies try to stay away from it, but with some skill you might be able to push them into fire by a well placed sweeping attack.

(http://bigosaur.com/blog/images/witch-0069-campfire.gif)

P.S. unlike this .gif, the animation doesn't skip frames in the real game ;)
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on April 23, 2016, 11:58:51 PM
That's neat :) looks the part too!
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on April 25, 2016, 09:53:12 PM
Bombs

Bombs have three different purposes in the game: 1. blast the rocks to find some items hidden underneath and to open some blocked passages. 2. blast doors to escape tough battles or locked doors when you don't have a key. 3. blast your enemies. This 3rd use is hard to do because the enemies are constantly on the move, but it's great for bosses because most of them will be stunned for a couple of seconds if the bomb hits them.

(http://bigosaur.com/blog/images/witch-0070-explodingbarels.gif)

Yeah, those exploding barrels are really in the game, but they have a special role. It's secret you will have to discover while playing.
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on April 25, 2016, 10:02:38 PM
Yay bombs :)

I feel like the explosions may have too sharply defined a shape, they seem to work by forming a specific shape and then vanishing from the inside to the same sharp edge rather than dissipating or being more smoky... I can't help feeling it makes them look a little bit clip-art-ish. The huge barrels look good though!
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on April 29, 2016, 10:19:53 PM
Teleport spell

So many ways to escape when things go south: blast a door with a bomb, use a scroll to open doors, use a key if some of the doors is locked... but now there's one more. A magic scroll that teleports you to a random location somewhere else in the forest:

(http://bigosaur.com/blog/images/witch-0070-teleport.gif)

It never teleports you into a boss fight, but anything else is possible.You might even get into a locked treasure area without a key.
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on April 29, 2016, 11:28:58 PM
I implemented random teleport as a spell in my game Adventures of Soros, it's a lovely one to have :D
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on May 07, 2016, 05:46:16 PM
During the adventure, you will be able to upgrade your weapons as well. The upgrade material are the runestones, magic stones of unknown origin that can be used to improve damage and range of your weapons. There are different runestones for melee, magic and ranged weapons.

(http://bigosaur.com/blog/images/witch-0071-runestone.png)

The upgrade animation is still work in progress, but I'm getting there:

(http://bigosaur.com/blog/images/witch-0071-runestone.gif)
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on May 07, 2016, 11:54:53 PM
Lovely stuff, and a nice animation!

Will all the runestones be purely positive, or will you get "decrease damage increase range" type ones too?
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on May 08, 2016, 10:14:47 AM
Lovely stuff, and a nice animation!

Will all the runestones be purely positive, or will you get "decrease damage increase range" type ones too?

All runestones are positive and effect is the same every time you play (there is no randomness). Runestones won't be easy to obtain. You can only get them from bosses or gold chests. Which brings me to the latest addition to the game:

On every level there will be some areas that are behind locked doors or simply blocked paths. If you manage to find keys or blast your way through (or teleport across, or ...) you can get inside and loot all the chests. Well, maybe not all. Some chests are locked and you need a key to open those.

(http://bigosaur.com/blog/images/witch-0072-chestgold.png)

Here's the animation:

(http://bigosaur.com/blog/images/witch-0072-chest.gif)

You might discover rings that give you special powers of the second sight. For example, the blue one allows you to see inside locked chests.

(http://bigosaur.com/blog/images/witch-0073-rings.png)
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on May 10, 2016, 12:39:59 AM
Yay, magic rings! Those never go wrong in fantasy settings :P

Also, to let you know, decided to do a cross-side newspost for this month which featured this thread: http://exilian.co.uk/forum/index.php?topic=4517 :)
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on May 11, 2016, 09:18:44 PM
Also, to let you know, decided to do a cross-side newspost for this month which featured this thread: http://exilian.co.uk/forum/index.php?topic=4517 :)

I just read it. That's great. Thanks.

I created a death animation for the player character. It does seem a little bit odd, but I kind of like it. What do you think, does this look cute, silly, or ...?

(http://bigosaur.com/blog/images/witch-0074-bombdie.gif)
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on May 11, 2016, 11:18:21 PM
Two things look odd to me. Firstly the dust should maybe settle downwards rather than in a band. Secondly the eyes look odd somehow, I'd probably have them closed. Or maybe making the cartoon xs bigger might work? Not sure.
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on May 12, 2016, 09:51:48 PM
Two things look odd to me. Firstly the dust should maybe settle downwards rather than in a band. Secondly the eyes look odd somehow, I'd probably have them closed. Or maybe making the cartoon xs bigger might work? Not sure.

I'll experiment more later. I guess when I add more stuff to the game I would see how it actually feels.

In the meantime, here's another environmental hazard:

(http://bigosaur.com/blog/images/witch-0075-spikeballs.png)

I call them SpikeBalls. Does anyone know the real name?
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on May 13, 2016, 12:17:14 AM
Is it just a non explosive spiky hazard if you tread on it? If so it maybe counts as a sort of caltrop? Not sure.
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on May 13, 2016, 01:38:35 PM
Is it just a non explosive spiky hazard if you tread on it? If so it maybe counts as a sort of caltrop? Not sure.

Yup, Caltrop. That's it.

Moving on, the character selection screen has some basic stats like Archery, Melee and Magic proficiency:

(http://bigosaur.com/blog/images/witch-0076-character-stats.png)

Those numbers are percentages. For example, if a Sword does 12 damage, a hero with 100 Melee will deal 12 damage when he hits, while a Hero with 50 Melee will only deal 6 damage. Those skill numbers can increase and decrease during game with various potions and artifacts.

The character on this screenshot has both Magic and Melee at 100 for testing purposes, but there won't be any such character in the game... Actually, one class (Paladin) will be close, but it will have something like 100/70/30 for Melee/Magic/Archery.
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on May 13, 2016, 11:16:30 PM
Looks good :D
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on May 18, 2016, 09:42:14 PM
The goblin shaman's main weapon is the Meteor Staff. I'm testing how the meteors work:

(http://bigosaur.com/blog/images/witch-0078-meteor-shower.gif)

Looks like I forgot to limit the meteor count ;)
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on May 18, 2016, 11:15:57 PM
Reminds me of when Comrade_General and I finally worked out how to hack meteor strikes into the Rome: Total War engine. We got quite trigger-happy with the things :P
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on June 01, 2016, 05:07:50 PM
If you attack a shop keeper, you can snatch any item for free. However, he has a bodyguard:

(http://bigosaur.com/blog/images/witch-0080-bushido.png)

There are various ways you can defeat him though, but it's often very risky:

(http://bigosaur.com/blog/images/witch-0080-bushido.gif)
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on June 01, 2016, 11:34:43 PM
Hah, nice :) I've played other games with similarish systems - can you sell items to the merchants, assuming they're alive/friendly?
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on June 06, 2016, 10:51:42 AM
Hah, nice :) I've played other games with similarish systems - can you sell items to the merchants, assuming they're alive/friendly?

Currently there are no plans for that. There are many items to pick up in the maze and inventory space is (deliberately) scarce, so being able to sell stuff would mean a lot of boring back-tracking.

I plan to have altars where you can sacrifice some specific items to get help from the gods. And shop keepers might sometimes give you quests. If you complete those, the shop will be upgraded on the next game level.
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: BearKnight on June 06, 2016, 01:34:51 PM
graphics remind me of little fighter 2 + CC
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on June 07, 2016, 11:47:36 PM
Altars sound a good plan (I remember the ones in PD where you had to tempt/kite enemies onto the altar then kill them in combat, those were fun but unpleasant).
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on June 12, 2016, 11:41:42 PM
Here's a video of some co-op gameplay. You can see how we robbed the shop  ;D

Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on June 16, 2016, 01:28:52 PM
What's the magical life-giving fairy triggered by? :P
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on June 30, 2016, 10:16:53 AM
What's the magical life-giving fairy triggered by? :P

It comes when at least one player is dead and at least one player is alive and there are no monsters.

Here's a trailer video, this time with proper cuts, so it's much more interesting and dynamic:

Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on June 30, 2016, 11:00:15 PM
Nice! Are you going to have any cutscenes/voice acting etc as the plot advances, btw?
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on July 12, 2016, 10:02:47 PM
Nice! Are you going to have any cutscenes/voice acting etc as the plot advances, btw?

Cut-scenes are planned. I currently only have a couple of still screens with characters and dialog boxes (will share those soon).

I don't think there will be voice acting, as that's hard to do right and better no voice acting than bad voice acting. I might add a narrator to the story in the end.

Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on July 12, 2016, 11:52:39 PM
OK, cool :)
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on July 15, 2016, 08:08:42 AM
I  have some cut-scenes planned for the final game, but currently a couple of placeholder images will do the job of showing the game plot:


(http://bigosaur.com/blog/images/witch-story1.png)

(http://bigosaur.com/blog/images/witch-story2.png)

(http://bigosaur.com/blog/images/witch-story3.png)

(http://bigosaur.com/blog/images/witch-story4.png)
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on July 15, 2016, 11:58:16 PM
Nicely done :)

Only one thing which struck me - the brothers if anything look older than their mother. Which may make sense given, you know, witchcraft, but I guess I'd expected her to look older.
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: BearKnight on July 21, 2016, 07:44:14 AM
Could be a vampire?
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on July 23, 2016, 04:25:12 PM
Only one thing which struck me - the brothers if anything look older than their mother.

I never looked at it that way. Perhaps I should make the "grown up" sprites a little bit taller... Or maybe just plug in the "youth magic" idea somewhere in the story. Thanks.

Potion shop

Sometimes a special kind of room will be created in the maze: a potion shop, pet shop or a quest room. More on quest rooms later, but here's the potion room:

(http://bigosaur.com/blog/images/witch-0087-potionshop.png)
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on July 23, 2016, 09:47:51 PM
Does this have the same bodyguard system as the merchants?
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on July 27, 2016, 10:48:47 AM
Does this have the same bodyguard system as the merchants?

Yes. But this NPC is a healer, so she can even heal the bodyguard while you fight.
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on July 27, 2016, 12:46:24 PM
Owch, fair enough!
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Phoenixguard09 on July 29, 2016, 12:16:19 PM
This looks awesome. Very keen to give it a crack! :)
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on August 02, 2016, 02:46:55 AM
I made a free demo. You can download it from here:

http://bigosaur.com/witch-demo035-setup.exe

It lacks sound effects and of course a lot of content, but you can play with those 2 characters, 7 different enemies and about 30 different weapons/items.

Let me know how you like it.
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on August 03, 2016, 12:26:28 AM
I've had a little play :)

It's very good fun! I'm going to do more playthroughs later and I'm looking forward to seeing more versions.

A few initial thoughts on things that were tricky/seemed off, many of these may be things you're already acting on but here goes:

I do like the general systems, though, it seems to work well, plays smoothly, looks good and I've found it good fun so far. Will report back soon with more thoughts and when I've explored the possibilities a bit more :)
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on August 06, 2016, 04:14:29 PM
On the initial trailer line, have the speech bubbles pop up one by one rather than appearing statically - keep people having something to look at. Though I guess you may want to actually move the characters around during that sequence in later versions anyway.

Yeah, those images are just a placeholder for now. I plan to have a complete "video" type of trailer. I still haven't figured out the whole script for it, but it should work in "show don't tell" fashion, i.e. stuff should happen on the screen and player will be able to figure out who's who and what's happening without narration overlay.

Menus - when I hit w to input a name I ended up also typing a w at the start of the name. A silly thing but I bet players will end up with unwanted characters called things like "wAragorn" and so on :P

Yup, I was annoyed by that one too. Caused by a strange bug in SDL. Fixed in the meantime.

In the village: during dialogue, it was pretty unclear when a conversation was supposed to have ended, and I missed several bits of advice on my first character as a result. I think you do need a [w for more]

I watched a couple people play and have seen this problem. One of players even stated that NPCs were useless because he didn't figure out that you can press W multiple times. Definitely a problem.

I still haven't fixed it as I'm not sure what is the correct way to do it. Do you think changing "w to talk" into "w for more" would be noticeable enough?

I think more explanation of when you can do powered-up attacks etc would have been good too, and possibly some kind of very gentle test-run fight beyond attacking the villagers. I'm still working some of the mana/etc levels out. The goblins are pretty tough opponents to hit right at the start of the game. About six dead characters so far can testify! (Or could testify if they weren't corpses)

These two kind of blend together. Since the game is rogue-like it's meant to be hard. This also means you will restart and play the game over many times. Not discovering all the mechanics immediately is a good thing. I really want the players to just go in with basic attacks (that's why the Knight is the default choice) and slowly learn the ropes and discover more and more effective ways to deal with enemies.

BTW, the mana system is shortly explained by the Cleric NPC if you have a magic item (ex. a staff) and talk to him.

I do like the general systems, though, it seems to work well, plays smoothly, looks good and I've found it good fun so far. Will report back soon with more thoughts and when I've explored the possibilities a bit more :)

Thanks! This kind of feedback means a lot.

Here's some eye candy. The forest level ends with this:

(http://bigosaur.com/blog/images/witch-0090-launch.gif)
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on August 07, 2016, 11:59:46 PM
Yeah - I think a difference to a lot of roguelikes I've played before is that the combat is pretty fast moving and I'm usually finding precious little in the way of health restorers. I'm very used to playing roguelikes, but it's the tendency even early on to be wandering around, unable to regain health, and knowing that I'm toast as soon as I walk through the next door that's kind of frustrating at times at the moment. I'm exploring a bit more though now.

EDIT: Have now completed the forest level as both characters, both times by using the barrel transformation on the boss. I guess my current feeling is that it's a bit too random - if you get the perfect item or sheer luck you've got an OK shot, but that doesn't always feel good as a player; ideally most games there should be some mix of item combinations and skill that *could* let you beat the boss, which doesn't feel like it's the case yet.

A few thoughts:
- Maybe script in some limit to ensure you can't get two shamans in one room, especially if there's much in the way of obstacles to stop you getting to them then having two is just a frustrating death sentence.
- The knight's sword has enough reach to cross low walls, but goblins don't attack back across them, which makes for perhaps overly easy kills any time you have a "trapped" goblin in the centre of a room
- Your rage builds up when you attack the guys in the village - as such I always end up tagging back there between fights to build up my rage counter
- There doesn't seem to be any way to check what stored potions and scrolls are without dropping them and picking them up again

Regarding conversations, I think at the end of every conversation box except the last one you need [w for more] or something in small writing, then it'd be reasonably clear.
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on August 21, 2016, 06:14:07 PM
Have now completed the forest level as both characters, both times by using the barrel transformation on the boss. I guess my current feeling is that it's a bit too random - if you get the perfect item or sheer luck you've got an OK shot

You're probably not used to playing so fast paced games. The first boss is made so that you can defeat it easily with default weapons. Especially with Knight: just lure her to initiate the club strike by standing in front of her. As she raises the club, quickly step aside (down or up) and then you have plenty of time to spam the light-attack button and build up the rage. After 2-3 rage attacks, she's gone. Make sure you do this positioned to the right of her as light-attack stun-locks the approaching goblins. You don't want to go left and risk goblins sneaking behind your back. It just takes some practice.

Beside the "Barellize" scroll, you can get the Peace scroll or Meduza arrows (if you're lucky to find a bow as well) for a quick and easy battle. Also, ice weapons (sword/hammer) make the fight very easy. The main problem is obtaining those (with some luck - in a locked treasure room). Or you can get the Escape scroll and skip the battle completely. Also, if you get a Potion of Infinite Rage, the fight is a breeze. But all these were meant for quick and easy skip of the boss to not have to go through the fight every time. Still, you should be able to beat her every time once you get more experience with the game.

Useful items are often found in the shop, but are too expensive. If you have 1 bomb, you can rob the shop by attacking the shop keeper. Once ready, place the bomb near a door to blast it, grab the item you want to, and run through the blasted door. The bodyguard doesn't follow you. It's risky, and I only succeed 50% of the time, but for some items it's worth it. Also, you can use Barellize or Gamble (change enemies) scrolls on the bodyguard and then loot all the items from the shop for free.

Maybe script in some limit to ensure you can't get two shamans in one room, especially if there's much in the way of obstacles to stop you getting to them then having two is just a frustrating death sentence.

I don't know if you figured it out already, but you can grab the voodoo doll once the Shaman drops it. So, the strategy for two shamans is to wait for a doll drop, grab the doll and then "activate" it, i.e. bind it to some of the enemies and drop it back to the ground. Then wait for the other shaman to drop the doll and grab that one. This way the shamans won't have any way to hurt you via dolls, and you only have to dodge the meteors, which isn't that hard. BTW, as you hit shaman, he becomes more and more aggressive, so make sure you sort out the doll collecting business before you start going hard on them.

The knight's sword has enough reach to cross low walls, but goblins don't attack back across them, which makes for perhaps overly easy kills any time you have a "trapped" goblin in the centre of a room.

Yup, the Knight sword deliberately has more damage than any goblin weapon. The goblins would actually attack you through walls/rocks if they could reach, but their reach is rather low. Only Goblin Sword has somewhat useful reach, but it's still shorter than the Knight's Long Sword. I don't mind giving players an easy option for some fights. As you noted, the game is already hard enough ;)

Your rage builds up when you attack the guys in the village - as such I always end up tagging back there between fights to build up my rage counter

You're right. I didn't think about that. Not sure how would I fix it though, because the NPCs' purpose is to teach the mechanics, and rage belongs there, so making them immune wouldn't work. Perhaps I should just lower their HP, so you cannot do it often. Although, when you get more experienced with the game, you would rarely feel a need to refill the rage on the first level.

There doesn't seem to be any way to check what stored potions and scrolls are without dropping them and picking them up again

This is actually a real problem and I too feel like it needs to be addressed. Especially if you get the "Avarice" curse and you cannot drop items. However, I have no good idea how? Perhaps I could use the icons that show up when you activate the scroll/drink the potion and show a smaller icons like that in the inventory...?

Regarding conversations, I think at the end of every conversation box except the last one you need [w for more] or something in small writing, then it'd be reasonably clear.

Thanks. I'll do it like that an see how it turns out with new players who haven't seen the game before.

BTW, I'm currently drawing and preparing graphics for the second level. The story continues at the castle battlements:

(http://bigosaur.com/blog/images/witch-0091-battlement-props.png)

As the goblin invasion is in progress, the battlements are filled with dangerous war machinery. The castle guards are defending a siege and have prepared various weapons and traps for the invaders. You are intruding here, so prepare to deal with the guards and the hazards at the same time.

The second level is meant to be more dangerous, but possibly shorter than the forest area playwise. You're walking around the battlements looking for a way to enter the castle insides.
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on August 28, 2016, 10:35:57 PM
Yep - I've worked through most of the possible items now and can usually beat the first boss without extra weapons. I think you're right about the speed being the main issue - moving from mostly turn based roguelikes to something like this is a very major step up in reaction times needed. The voodoo doll is incidentally also pretty good for beating the boss; lock it onto her, drop it, stand on it, get out the way between her starting her swing and the club coming down, and she can do most of the damage to herself.

Could you have an extra keypress option (z maybe) that brings up a popup extra box with stats/info on the thing currently in your active inventory slot? That would seem like the best option to me. I'd like to be able to check my character's Mag/Rng/Combat percentages too, so that could follow a similar system.

Re the village, a few thoughts:
- Have a training dummy, and make the rest of the characters non-attackable or even penalise the player for attacking them (you can have the dummy able to be knocked over, or have a second knocked over one as well). It's possibly just me, but in general I admit I find "joyfully whack your fellow peaceful villagers in the face with a sword" slightly odd simply from a storyline perspective.
- I think after more testing I don't consider the free rage buildup to be so broken it's an issue.
- I feel like having some other fairly useless feature in the village would be good - I'm not sure what, but having something to break up the feeling of "welcome to tutorial village where literally the only thing we exist for is telling you how this game works" is something that I feel would be good to flesh things out a bit and give the game a tiny bit more texture.

Looking forward to being able to play through some more - I used this as my test stream for our twitch channel, I'll let you know if I stream another playthrough at some point :)
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on August 30, 2016, 02:41:35 PM
Could you have an extra keypress option (z maybe) that brings up a popup extra box with stats/info on the thing currently in your active inventory slot? That would seem like the best option to me. I'd like to be able to check my character's Mag/Rng/Combat percentages too, so that could follow a similar system.

I have already implemented the last one. When you pause the game, detailed character stats are shown beneath the player/inventory area: mag/rng/melee, speed, magic/archery range, current/max HP, etc. I might add current weapon/item info alongside.

- Have a training dummy, and make the rest of the characters non-attackable or even penalise the player for attacking them (you can have the dummy able to be knocked over, or have a second knocked over one as well). It's possibly just me, but in general I admit I find "joyfully whack your fellow peaceful villagers in the face with a sword" slightly odd simply from a storyline perspective.

Initially, I had then getting angry at you. However, some test players would accidentally hit them, and then they weren't able to get their tips anymore. So I made a change and now they ignore your hits until they die or teleport away.

The veteran soldier and the pirate are meant to be the dummies for hitting. :)

Looking forward to being able to play through some more - I used this as my test stream for our twitch channel, I'll let you know if I stream another playthrough at some point :)

Great! Thanks.

BTW, I'm going to show the game at the EGX in Birmingham in September. Did you (or anyone else on this forum) plan on going there?

I also have an interesting issue that I'm not quite sure how to solve. Since renting equipment from Eurogamer is too expensive and I only need the monitors, I'm thinking about buying two new monitors for the show (I'm coming via airplane, so shipping monitors all over from Serbia isn't a good idea). Anyway, when EGX is over, I'm going to have two extra monitors that I've payed for, but it doesn't really look like a good idea to fly them back with me (I don't really need those back home, and the airplane cost + customs tax when I re-enter my country are rather high).

I see a couple of options here:

1. find someone else to rent/borrow monitors from for a fee? I don't know anyone in UK, so this sounds complicated.

2. buy monitors and sell them to someone in UK when the show is over. Those would be completely new monitors, used only for 4 days at the show, but I would sell them with some good discount. The main problem is that the show ends on Sunday at 19pm, and I have to leave for airplane Monday at 7am, so basically the transaction would have to happen Sunday evening after 19pm, and I really don't know how to find people interested.

3. buy new monitors, leave them with someone in the UK and re-use them for the next show (I might come to Exilian event in October). Of course, I would need someone to keep monitors for me. I wouldn't mind if that person used them in the meantime if they find some need for it.

The monitor size would be somewhere in 24" - 30" range.

Any ideas how to solve this are welcome?
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on August 31, 2016, 12:16:30 AM
Yes, I figured that you were meant to attack the pirate and the veteran - it's just an aesthetic thing I guess, it feels more right for you to have a straw training dummy to hit than a person (and there's space for them around the bottom left corner).

Are you going to be at EGX for all the four days? I hadn't been planning to go, but I can try to get there at some point to say hi, it's not far from me. :)

On which note I can also definitely offer some help with your monitors problem - I currently live in Birmingham, a couple of train stops south of the town centre. I don't have any monitors of the size you need so I can't help with option 1, or option 2 as neither I nor Exilian have much in the way of spare funds, but I could certainly at least look after some monitors for you and keep them in a cupboard/borrow them for events occasionally (or indeed allow you to remotely handle re-selling them to someone else if you wanted to do that).

Also, if you've got any plans to come to ExiliCon, please drop me an email (megadux@exilian.co.uk) - it's quite a small event to come so far for from your point of view, but it would be great to have you there if you wanted to come. I don't have that many traders' tables left though so if you want to book one please give me a shout soon!
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on August 31, 2016, 05:44:23 PM
Are you going to be at EGX for all the four days?

Yes. In fact, I'm coming in on 19th, and will spend 20th buying the monitors and 21st setting up the stand. If you don't want to mess with the EGX, perhaps we could meet before the madness starts ;) have some beers in the evening or whatever. My sister is coming with me, so we'll definitely want to see the city as well.

I'm flying in late on 19th, and my plan is to pre-order the monitors from box.co.uk and have them ready for pickup on 20th. On 20th, I would go there personally, pick them up and bring those back to hotel. It's about 9 miles away. Any idea how much a cab (taxi?) would cost me for that distance?

After the monitor business is over, we'll probably go sightseeing around the city? Any recommendations?

I could certainly at least look after some monitors for you and keep them in a cupboard/borrow them for events occasionally (or indeed allow you to remotely handle re-selling them to someone else if you wanted to do that).

That would be awesome.

Also, if you've got any plans to come to ExiliCon, please drop me an email (megadux@exilian.co.uk) - it's quite a small event to come so far for from your point of view

I would love to come. It's only an airplane ticket away and there are low-cost companies, so it shouldn't be too expensive. Since it's a small event, I would come alone, esp. since the monitor problem is now handled ;) and I only need to bring my laptop. E-mail coming your way.
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on September 04, 2016, 10:15:05 PM
That's great - I'll probably need to skip the event itself as I'm writing frantically, but I'll happily come into the middle of town for an evening (21st maybe?) and go for a drink :)

I'm not sure what cab prices are like around Birmingham - I'd guess a journey like that would be between £30 and £40, but I might well be wrong as I don't use taxis often.

I've replied to your email now too - sorry for being slow, things are a bit piled up with work here!

One thing on MMAW that I just noticed; when I'm the knight and can't identify scrolls, I can ID them when I have a temporary magic boost (the +50% in next battle one). However, I "forget" what they are when I lose that again. It would perhaps make more sense if once the scroll had been identified it stayed identified, even if you were able to do so only with a temporary stat boost.
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on September 04, 2016, 10:40:45 PM
One thing on MMAW that I just noticed; when I'm the knight and can't identify scrolls, I can ID them when I have a temporary magic boost (the +50% in next battle one). However, I "forget" what they are when I lose that again. It would perhaps make more sense if once the scroll had been identified it stayed identified, even if you were able to do so only with a temporary stat boost.

Great catch. It also happened to me a few days ago when I found a lot of Barbarian (melee+, magic-) potions and basically changed my class from mage to knight mid-game. Suddenly all knowledge of scrolls was gone.

I'll make it work the way you described.

Here are some updates on the game:

I'm adding some screens without enemies, but with traps instead. It creates an interesting variety. Instead of just plowing through the piles of enemies, sometimes you have to stop and carefully thread across the screen. Of course, some screens will combine enemies with hazards, which you can use to your benefit.

(http://bigosaur.com/blog/images/witch-0092-spitfire33fps.gif)

These spitters shoot fireballs. Fire is one of the most dangerous types of damage. Here's a breakdown of the types of damage in the game have so far:

(http://bigosaur.com/blog/images/w-damage.png)

Petrify
Turns into stone within 10 seconds. Counter with Life Staff or Dragon Fire Potion.

Fire
Burning drains health really fast. Regular fireballs, walking onto a campfire or getting hit by a spitter drains 50-60 health in a couple of seconds.

Ice
doesn't do any damage, but prevents movement/attacking for a couple of seconds.

Poison
Slowly drains health. Can only be stopped with Dragon Fire Potion or Antidote.

Hunger
Very slowly drains health. Can be stopped by eating any type of food, including gold coins if you have the Gold Diet buff.
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on September 04, 2016, 11:06:36 PM
One more thing that I've been trying to test but not managed - what happens if you have a run of "speed up, max health down" potions enough to make your max health hit zero? Do you die? I've never found enough of them to test it...

The medusa arrows are great fun. Though I goofed up first time I found them - using them on the boss is actually a bad idea unless having real problems, as a petrified boss = no nice equipment drops!
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on September 04, 2016, 11:19:42 PM
One more thing that I've been trying to test but not managed - what happens if you have a run of "speed up, max health down" potions enough to make your max health hit zero? Do you die?

Your max HP never drops below 10. If it's 10 and you drink one more potion, max HP remains the same, and the current HP drops to one.

The medusa arrows...on the boss is actually a bad idea unless having real problems

That's true for now (Ogre Mom will be one of the easiest bosses in the game). Currently, the best use is to petrify the shop guard.

BTW, I forgot to post this, I have a new unit type ready for the second level:

(http://bigosaur.com/blog/images/witch-0093-guard-spear.gif)

He's shown in the forest in this video because I was testing, but you will find him at the battlements in the actual game. The guards are quick and deadly. They can throw spears from the distance, or stab you when too close:

(http://bigosaur.com/blog/images/witch-0094-guard-stab.png)

Their spears have great range, longer than all standard swords, so melee combat against them is very challenging.
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on September 05, 2016, 12:10:05 AM
Ooft. Looks painful! Might be one where the goblin axe is a fairly useful counter ("two can play at that game"). There are admittedly some weapons that I've just never got the hang of (I never use the heavy hammer; if I'm a wizard I'll use a goblin axe usually and just use the ranged attack of that, if a knight I prefer the reach of the longsword).
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on September 13, 2016, 10:09:51 PM
Here comes the red dragon:


My Mom is a Witch is on Steam Greenlight now, please vote:

http://steamcommunity.com/sharedfiles/filedetails/?id=761177454

Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on September 13, 2016, 11:30:03 PM
Upvoted :) Are those pet chickens and pigs on the greenlight video? If not, what are they?

(I know I should be more excited by the dragon, but hey, pets!)
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on September 16, 2016, 09:55:59 AM
Upvoted :) Are those pet chickens and pigs on the greenlight video?

Let's see... in order of appearance ;) ... bunny, pig, blowfish, deer, lizard, chicken.

There are already 20 pets in the game, each with a different effect. Here are some:

(http://bigosaur.com/blog/images/witch-pets.png)

Snail slows down enemies, Ram knocks them down, etc.

Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on September 16, 2016, 11:52:24 AM
Wonderful :D

Two further questions on this topic:
1. Is that a tiny obese giraffe?
2. Can I have a pangolin?
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: ndnninja15 on September 16, 2016, 05:17:02 PM
Very cool art style you have there! I gave ya a thumbs up on the greenlight page too.
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on September 16, 2016, 06:13:49 PM
Also I recently succeeded in making poisonous fireballs happen for the first time :D
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on September 18, 2016, 11:23:14 AM
Two further questions on this topic:
1. Is that a tiny obese giraffe?
2. Can I have a pangolin?

1. Yes.
2. I'll see what we can do about it  :)
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on September 18, 2016, 01:02:11 PM
Yay :D
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on October 05, 2016, 10:46:01 AM
I have some great news. My Mom is a Witch has been greenlit yesterday. I'm starting to plan for a Steam Early Access release, possibly for Exilicon. Not sure if I'll be able to make it. We shall see.
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Glaurung on October 05, 2016, 01:13:49 PM
Congratulations, and good luck with the release.
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on October 05, 2016, 04:10:24 PM
That's fantastic news, well done!

I've done a fair number (a lot) of playthroughs of the new build now :)

Thoughts as follows:
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on October 09, 2016, 09:33:24 PM
That's fantastic news, well done!

Thanks. I won't be able to get the release out on time for Exilicon, so I moved it to November 10th.

I'm looking forward to seeing a few more different enemies on the battlements

Two more planned: The Guard Captain (has a shield like the Goblin Defender, but can move while shielding), and The Wind Mage (I'm still undecided about his abilities, most probably buffing other units' speed and shooting regular magic orbs at players as well).

The dragon is a good boss. I think what it needs is possibly a few more options that make the fight easier without being an auto-win

Actually, I tried hard to make the Dragon beatable with just basic weapons and a lot of dodging. It's mostly safe to stay close to him and avoid fire. He can stomp you, but I nerfed that attack, so it does almost no damage. Here's how I beat him fair and square with the Celestial Smasher:


2x Gamble to turn it into a goblin

Wow. I never considered using Gamble like that. Awesome!

A 2-3 battle potion of fire resistance, or a pet that confers fire resistance

Yes, fire resistance is on my TODO list, so that will be added at some point.

I can't keep my fingers resting on the same set of keys, it makes it miles more likely that I'll accidentally trigger my special ability when I don't want to, the fact I need to hold it down makes it harder to concentrate on running/dodging whilst I'm doing that, and I'm not really sure what it adds.

It was changed during EGX and by watching some players play on YouTube videos. Many (majority) of players didn't figure out that you can move backward and shoot the other way and complained how it was hard to play with a Mage or that it felt awkward that you have to stop and turn to shoot. After the change, everyone figured it out on their own. I think you might be biased because you're used to playing with the old controls. Basically, the D key is now only used for stomping. If you ignore it, everything works the same as before, you just move your index finger one key to the left or right depending on the shooting direction.

It may well be different when using controllers

Actually, it's even harder because you're using your right thumb to control the stick and you have to let it go if you want to press any of the buttons.

I've almost entirely stopped bothering to pick up bows/arrows when those were my favourite things to use in the older build I had.

I'll think about ways to find some better compromise perhaps.

I think speeding up the attacks from the goblin warriors was a good call, I definitely have a rather healthier respect for them as enemies now!

Thanks. I also lowered their HP, so it doesn't take too long to take them out when they start hiding behind the shield.
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on October 09, 2016, 09:56:31 PM
I'm getting better at the dragon over time; speed certainly is the key to beating him without special kit, I think. Though I did overdo that in one run and died because my character stacked so many speed boosts I found him too hard to get into the right place!

With the controls issue, I've played enough games (at least 20 or so dead dragons!) now with the new version that I don't think it's just bias from the old controls, I think it's playstyle more than anything else. I really like being able to do tactics that involve very quick weapon switches (fire poison/ice arrow then switch to melee for example), which are less intuitive when you have to hold down X or C to shoot, I guess for players who are more into dodging around but still using one weapon. IIRC the holding is another difference, I think you used to be able to just tap the D key once to start firing the arrow whereas you seem to need to hold X or C down now to draw the bow, though I may be misremembering that?
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on October 10, 2016, 07:44:02 AM
I really like being able to do tactics that involve very quick weapon switches (fire poison/ice arrow then switch to melee for example), which are less intuitive when you have to hold down X or C to shoot

Oh, I see your point now. Being able to use the same key to attack even after you switch weapons. That makes sense, and actually that was the reasoning the game worked like that before.

I think you used to be able to just tap the D key once to start firing the arrow

Yes. And that was actually one of the problems with new players. Once they did that with D, they never tried holding the key down to shoot continuously, and would also never discover that you can back away from the enemy and shoot back at him. See how this player struggles, for example:

https://youtu.be/5FxRsq0VMW0?t=9m02s

He's just an example, I have seen 80% of players on EGX doing the same.

I'm currently thinking to add a hidden counter in the game. Once you fire 20 magic orbs or, say, 10 arrows, the game would enable the old behavior with D key as well. This would solve the problem, but it might introduce a new one - the controls might feel inconsistent and players will think there's a bug in the game...

Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on October 10, 2016, 12:07:53 PM
Could you just have "enable d key to fire ranged weapons" as an option on the main menu "settings" screen that's disabled by default but which people can turn on if they want to?
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on October 11, 2016, 09:00:03 AM
Could you just have "enable d key to fire ranged weapons" as an option on the main menu "settings" screen that's disabled by default but which people can turn on if they want to?

Looks like that would be the best option. Although, I hate having such things as options, because it usually means that I failed in game design. There must be some other way...
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on October 11, 2016, 11:00:48 AM
I don't see it like that at all - I often like having some options in a good game, because it means the developer has catered for and thought about the fact that people will like playing the same game in slightly different ways :)

(The other option I thought of would be to have the D key unlocked by an actual event, for example killing the first boss, by which time people should have gotten used to the x-c system.)
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on October 20, 2016, 10:38:50 AM
I have been quiet with adding new features to the game as I was preparing for the Steam release (http://store.steampowered.com/app/539400). Many bugs were fixed, netcode works properly again, and I made some changes to enable full controller support. That's right, now you can lean back and play it all with a controller, even stuff like entering player names and password codes for online multiplayer.

The Glacier has been nerfed a little bit - the special Freeze All Enemies power is now magic based instead of rage based. It needs 2 mana bars to activate. It's still very powerful, but not game breaking anymore.

I also added health bars to enemies:

(http://bigosaur.com/blog/images/witch-0095-hpbars.png)

I was a little bit conflicted about this change. Neither Castle Crashers nor The Binding of Isaac have those. But Rampage Knights has, and the combat feels better. You would rarely look at the health bar for enemy, but sometimes it gets important, esp. when you're dealing with bigger crowds - it makes it easier to pick those you can one-shot and remove from the battle. I understand some players might not like it, so it's optional. You can turn it off in the Graphics settings.
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on October 29, 2016, 09:13:24 PM
I always preferred the Mjolnir to the Glacier in any case, but yes, that sounds a sensible nerfing strategy :)
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on November 23, 2016, 12:38:14 AM
In case anyone missed it, My Mom is a Witch is on Steam.

(http://bigosaur.com/blog/images/mmiaw600steam.png) (http://store.steampowered.com/app/539400)

http://store.steampowered.com/app/539400 (http://store.steampowered.com/app/539400)

I was in Paris last week, showing it on IndieCade, and now I'm back into development.

(http://bigosaur.com/blog/images/witch-0102-action.png)

Currently working on the Archer character. Should be ready soon. There will be a simple quest to unlock him - collecting 200 arrows in the forest.

Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on November 28, 2016, 11:57:25 PM
I'll try and produce a let's play video at some point soon - I keep meaning to put more on the Exilian YouTube channel :)
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on December 09, 2016, 07:37:29 PM
I have been so busy with development (and sick with a flu), so I barely managed to give any updates on the progress. Anyway, the Archer's ready:

(http://bigosaur.com/blog/images/witch-0104-archer.gif)

He shows up randomly in the forest as an NPC and gives you a quest. Once you complete the quest, he will be unlocked and you can select him.

And the game is available on MacOSX and Linux.
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on December 10, 2016, 05:12:47 PM
Very nice! I now have the archer, and I'm enjoying the challenges (and doing fairly well at them though I say so myself, though the first time the overdose potion turned up that was a nasty surprise!)

Also, I got bored today and made what might be MMaW's first one-file modpack, making myself a festive variant skin on the red archer:
(http://i.imgur.com/nC1ahoN.png)
(http://i.imgur.com/Vuyu8au.png)

I'm happy to share the file & instructions for use, if that's OK with Bigosaur! :)
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on December 17, 2016, 09:29:06 PM
It sure is ok. Santa looks super fun  ;D

As for the game... I have been silent because I'm preparing a lot of content for the next chapter:

(http://bigosaur.com/blog/images/witch-0108-executioner.png)

The goblins are storming into the castle. While the guards are fighting back, you are trying to get to the dungeon. You need to go through the keep while the goblins and guards are both attacking each other and you as well. This gives you some interesting tactical options. Do you just evade them and let them battle it out before attacking the winner, or you try to help the weaker side to even out the balance of power.

The next update will feature a new area with different graphics, background music and environment (traps, destructable items). And a couple of new enemies and a new boss.
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on December 23, 2016, 11:42:01 PM
Oooo, new boss - will be interested to see how tough this one is to beat, I'm getting alright at the dragon now though it still kills me on occasion.

Also, some bugs that would be good to fix: when you have a string of pets following you (aka if you have the wolf) some of the pets' abilities have problems:

Also, welcome to the new subforum! :)
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on December 25, 2016, 09:48:56 AM
The fox can't always be moved into position to unlock chests

That one is intentional.

Quote from: Jubal
The item-fetching dog, if it's placed after one of the scout animals (tiger or chicken) in the queue, will carry items to its place in the queue, not to the player, so it will just pick up things and run away to whichever door the chicken/tiger is scouting, which can make it worse than useless!

That's a bug. I'll fix it.

BTW, the dog can be deadly. If you're using a melee weapon and the dog brings you the voodoo doll you are marked with it's easy to kill yourself ;)

P.S. Some new items coming in the next version as well:

(http://bigosaur.com/blog/images/witch-0109-newitems.png)

There's a reusable map, bottomless bag of bombs, and a magic chest that turns mana into gold.

Beside those, there will be a bunch of pendants granting you immunity to fire, ice, poison and petrifying. The Run Like the Wind potion is removed from the pool because it was OP - a new amulet is introduced instead which gives you a permanent speed upgrade.

The Overdose potion is going to be replaced with a Beer item, so that drinking unknown potions isn't so punishing.
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on December 25, 2016, 01:50:44 PM
Ah, OK. Though that does mean that the later you get the Fox in your line of pets, the less useful she is.

I don't think there's ever much reason to use the dog in the forest levels - in the castle there are some things behind fences that you can't blow up, but it's pretty rare that there's anything you can't get at in the forest.

I like the look of the new stuff :) If there's immunity to petrifying that presumably means there will be petrifying enemies - does that basically mean one hit will kill you from those if you don't have the pendant?
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on December 26, 2016, 09:41:37 AM
I don't think there's ever much reason to use the dog in the forest levels - in the castle there are some things behind fences that you can't blow up, but it's pretty rare that there's anything you can't get at in the forest.

Well, there are situations where it's hard to get to the voodoo doll, ex. if the shaman is on the other side of the screen walled off by a bunch of barrels and you're busy with enemies. And there are some configurations in the locked room where you need 2-3 bombs to get to the pedestal item on the other side. Since it's the first level, you could go to the shop and get a dog to help.

I like the look of the new stuff :) If there's immunity to petrifying that presumably means there will be petrifying enemies - does that basically mean one hit will kill you from those if you don't have the pendant?

Petrification (is that a word?) is a slow process, you have enough time to use the Life Staff or Dragon Fire potion to remove it before you turn into stone completely.
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on December 26, 2016, 11:44:30 AM
Petrification is indeed a word :) And yeah, I guess you're right, but I'd still usually choose another pet over the dog.

Another small bug, if you use the sunset scroll on lvl 2 it affects the ogre & battering ram on the end of level cutscene but nothing else:
(http://i.imgur.com/jTvQm5F.png)
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on December 27, 2016, 01:29:25 PM
Quote
if you use the sunset scroll on lvl 2 it affects the ogre & battering ram

Fixed it. It will be in the next version. Thanks.

Moving on... A new sword is added to the game:

It's called Thunderstriker currently. If you have an idea for a better name, please tell me.

(http://bigosaur.com/blog/images/witch-0110-thundersword.gif)

It has regular swing and overhead strike attacks and the special rage attack is to shoot a lighting bolt. The bolt doesn't knock down enemies, and does 25 damage/hit, so it can deal anywhere between 50 damage to lesser enemies to 125 damage to a boss. The shorter range of the special attack is compensated by the longer range of the sword (currently it's the weapon with the farthest reach in the game), decent damage and ability to shoot lightning through obstacles.

Get an Infinite rage potion and have some fun.

UPDATE: Lightning staff added as well: https://twitter.com/Bigosaur/status/814242256110710786
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on December 29, 2016, 05:44:31 PM
Is the lighting staff affected by orb split potions, or do the bolts not count as orbs?
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on December 30, 2016, 05:14:06 PM
Is the lighting staff affected by orb split potions, or do the bolts not count as orbs?

They do not count, because lightning isn't treated like magic in the game. This also means that increasing/decreasing your magic stat doesn't affect it.

The staff has regular orbs. The lightning attack is only available when you activate it (1/4) and then lasts until the end of the battle, similar to the Fireball staff.

Using a Sorcerer Runestone upgrades both the orb damage and lightning damage. There's also a sword with lightning rage attack, and you can use Sorcerer Runestone to increase the lightning damage for it as well.

Hm, thinking about this, maybe the Fireball staff should do more burning damage as well if upgraded. I need to think about it.

Update: I decided to have a special set of items to upgrade the elemental damage. A different item for fire and lightning damage, and another to extend the freeze duration. The Sorcerer Runestone will be for staves only.
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on January 05, 2017, 03:53:43 PM
That works well, good stuff :)

I'm just still being smug about topping the first monthly leaderboard :P
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on January 05, 2017, 06:10:00 PM
I'm just still being smug about topping the first monthly leaderboard :P

 :)

BTW, Chapter 3 is ready:

(http://bigosaur.com/blog/images/witch-0115-chapter3announce.png)

This update brings the castle level, with new graphics and music theme. The goblins and guards are fighting each other while you are trying to reach the dungeon.

Features:

- Executioner boss
- Big Orc enemy fighting alongside the goblins
- The Royal Sorcerer enemy helping the guards
- 4 new pets with new effects
- 3 new weapons
- 15 new items
- lightning based damage
- fire and lightning damage can be upgraded with the new items
- duration of freezing for ice based weapons can be upgraded
- pendants for ice, poison, fire, petrify immunity
- overdose random potion replaced with beer
- orbs can now be upgraded to bounce off the walls
- various reusable items: Magic Map, Magic Chest, Bottomless Bag of Bombs, etc.
- balancing of different weapons, spells, potions, prices
- fixes to enemy AI
- cut scene between chapter 2 and 3 can be interrupted
- other minor tweaks and improvements
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on January 05, 2017, 07:49:16 PM
Mjolnir + Infinite rage potion should possibly be nerfed a bit somehow.

That is to say, just did my first run of level 3 and took the executioner down really very quickly with that combo, it does a lot of damage and then inevitably does it again on the rebound if you use it right. Not that many hits, at range, and any of the bosses can be taken down.

I like the new stuff! :) Will take a while to work out how to use it. With the element boosts I'd make them rarer - there seemed to be quite a few of them around, and my character didn't have any weapons that could use them so it felt a bit flat that there were so many items and "upgrades" I was getting that did nothing. I'd also consider making some of them upgrade the weapon rather than the player?
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on January 06, 2017, 01:30:28 PM
Mjolnir + Infinite rage potion should possibly be nerfed a bit somehow.

I could nerf the damage, but if the rage is infinite it would just make the fight a little bit longer, nothing else. The same problem was with the Glacier, but changing Mjolnir megathrow to be mana-based doesn't make much sense. Maybe I should just change the Infinite Rage potion to something else. Maybe make it a Double Rage potion or something like that, so your rage fills up really fast for one battle, but you still need to land a couple of hits to fill it. Since the rage fills up only for melee strikes, that would make the fight more interesting.

With the element boosts I'd make them rarer - there seemed to be quite a few of them around, and my character didn't have any weapons that could use them so it felt a bit flat that there were so many items and "upgrades" I was getting that did nothing. I'd also consider making some of them upgrade the weapon rather than the player?

This is tied together. It's likely that you'll find the upgrade before you find the weapon, and having to drag upgrade items with you is no fun (esp. with limited inventory space). The only upgrade with OP potential is the Ritual Icicle, but it has "Max HP down" effect, so it's a tradeoff - if you don't have an ice based weapon, you'll think twice before using it.

As for the rarity, it will be watered down when more items get added to the game.
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on January 08, 2017, 02:42:11 PM
That could work, though I don't think infinite rage is overpowered on any of the non-throwing weapons or bows, it's the speed with which you can pump out weapon throws (just hitting the special attack on mjolnir or throwing axe is often as effective as a bow, lower damage but you deal it so much faster) that seems to be the worst issue... maybe make some distinction there? Would it be possible for it to only allow you another throw after the previous throwing weapon has disappeared, because that would fix it I think? I think I'm definitely finding the mjolnir the most powerful weapon at the moment, though that may just be me.

Also, a tactic I've worked out which you might want to think on whether you want to counter it: potions like super rage and blur run out after one battle, but the game only triggers the battle end when you're in a given room and all the creatures are dead. SO, if you have a bomb or escape scroll, you can drink your potions, start a battle, continue until you're leaving one enemy just alive, then walk off by blowing/opening a door and still use the same potion effect for more or less another whole battle somewhere else, rinse and repeat if you have enough bombs/escape scrolls to do so. Something to think on whether that's something you're OK with players being able to do :)
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on January 11, 2017, 02:27:37 PM
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I don't think infinite rage is overpowered on any of the non-throwing weapons or bows

Ice Sword and constant dashing is OP against all enemies. Even the dragon is kept frozen most of the time. Lightning sword is also a killer due to huge lightning damage. With gold arrows bows are also OP. The hammers are mostly useless though.

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I'm definitely finding the mjolnir the most powerful weapon at the moment

Me too. But it's Mjolnir, a divine weapon afterall :)

I considered using a slower animation for throw thus slowing the rate, but it wouldn't be so much fun anymore.

I also considered lowering the thrown damage (i.e. keep 25 damage for melee attack and have something like 10 for thrown Mjolnir), but I feel like it would only make the battles longer while the player will still keep doing the same thing (evading enemies and throwing it around). I feel like it wouldn't make the battle more challenging, just boring.

I think I'll just leave it as it is. As more weapons are added to the game, you will be less likely to get Mjolnir often, so those runs when you do will feel special.

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If you have a bomb or escape scroll, you can drink your potions, start a battle...

Actually I hope more players discover and use that. It's a fun, creative way to use the game and bombs are so valuable for other things you can never get too much of them. Escape scroll is really rare and drop count is limited.

BTW, I envision the final game to be more like The Binding of Isaac or Spelunky than old-school roguelikes. I.e. a skilled player should be able to beat it 90% of the time, but the real challenge will come from achievements and quests - some of which will be really difficult. And speedruns.

The other thing is that levels should get harder after the castle (which is mostly easy due to goblins and guards fighting each other). On the next level (dungeon), you will have a horde of escaped prisoners (thieves, rogues) on your hands, and after that come the catacombs with really dangerous skeleton mages and a necromancer.
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on January 16, 2017, 02:56:36 PM
I'm still finding the castle hard enough - most rooms are fine, but the rooms where you get say 2 mages, 6 guards, and no goblins are exceptionally difficult - even if I have a scroll I'm often dead before I can use it, taking on large numbers of speed-boosted guards on your own is very tough.

And yes, that's fair enough, look forward to seeing some more weaponry :) A couple of thoughts I had - the crossbow as a one-off archery boost is cool, but it also feels odd that the crossbow isn't a weapon in itself. Could a quiver or bracers be used as the "boost" item instead, that would feel like it made more sense?

Also with staffs for the wizards, I'm finding I always just keep using the poison staff in preference to others. The lightning staff takes ages to recharge its special ability, which I find isn't even *that* good (it's OK early on, but if I've managed to upgrade the poison staff properly I'd much rather be pumping out 2-3 10-damage poison globes at a time from that), the fire staff is too much of a liability if everything's happening fast - I might use it in the very, very rare case that I was fire immune but not otherwise, and I don't think (correct me if I'm wrong) that there's much point in using the life staff on solo runs.
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Phoenixguard09 on January 16, 2017, 03:35:47 PM
I just wanted to take a moment to congratulate you Bigosaur on your work. I have enjoyed several hours of gameplay now, and intend to enjoy several more when I get the time.

Excellent work. :)
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on January 17, 2017, 06:19:41 PM
Another thought - I currently find it too easy to accidentally trigger the new boost items when I don't want to (for example because I'd rather use a replicator scroll on them first); I'd find it easier and have fewer such "accidents" (which can be very annoying if you say trigger the icicle while you're trying to fight remaining guards after a boss drops it) if I took them into my inventory and then triggered them rather than just directly "grabbing" the upgrade.
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on January 18, 2017, 10:43:15 PM
feels odd that the crossbow isn't a weapon in itself.

I thought about that, but having to pick up bolts on top of arrows seemed like too much. The other idea was to just make it shoot with unlimited ammo, but I felt like it wouldn't be a very interesting mechanics. 

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Could a quiver or bracers be used as the "boost" item instead, that would feel like it made more sense?

Yes. I never though of that, but I already have some archery upgrades planned, and I was thinking about possible graphical representation, so I could use that.

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Also with staffs for the wizards, I'm finding I always just keep using the poison staff in preference to others.

I'm split between Snake staff and Meteor staff, even though Meteor staff is nerfed it still stuns both the Ogre Mama and the Executioner and I can use it with a voodoo doll to deal decent damage to dragon. And I can still use it to rob all the shops even if my speed goes below default (6).

The lightning staff takes ages to recharge its special ability, which I find isn't even *that* good.

It doesn't do much damage, but it can shoot through walls. It's really useful for some tough rooms on the battlements where you can kill everyone through the fence or behind the rocks. In the castle there aren't any vertical obstacles, so it's mostly useless, but that will change in the dungeon/catacombs levels. It's also a decent off-hand weapon for the Knight because the lightning attack isn't magic based.

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The fire staff is too much of a liability if everything's happening fast - I might use it in the very, very rare case that I was fire immune but not otherwise

That's why it isn't always "on", but you can activate the fire when you needed. When I add more bosses to the game, and there's not always a fire-resistant dragon, it will make more sense. BTW, there's a fire mage character planned that you will be able to play and he would start the game with fire resistance. So, that weapon was meant for him.

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and I don't think (correct me if I'm wrong) that there's much point in using the life staff on solo runs.
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Well, if you like risk/reward situations, you can use it to drain HP from the bosses. Stock some mana potions and you can do it multiple times per battle. Not really useful for mages, but as a Knight/Archer you can use it as a good healing item and boss HP drain.

There will be some more uses like petrified statues you can bring back to life and also stopping the petrification process against the Medusa boss, but that's the future...

Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on January 18, 2017, 10:44:03 PM
I just wanted to take a moment to congratulate you Bigosaur on your work. I have enjoyed several hours of gameplay now, and intend to enjoy several more when I get the time.

Excellent work. :)

Thanks!
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on January 18, 2017, 10:58:24 PM
New content coming soon. Player vs player mode (local only) for 2-4 players. There will be about 15 different arenas - just like regular forest, battlements, castle levels, but without enemies. And items and weapons drop randomly on the ground or pedestals while the players are fighting each other until only one is left alive. Here's the screen showing the results between rounds:

(http://bigosaur.com/blog/images/witch-0118-pvp.png)

To make it more interesting, a Bushido will spawn at a preset "sudden death" time, and chase the players around.

You will be able to select one of the unlocked heroes or a Goblin Berserker - that's the one with the axe.

And here are some new bows that will be in the next version as well (if you have unlocked the Archer):

(http://bigosaur.com/blog/images/witch-0119-bows.png)

P.S. Gold bow + gold arrow + rhino = chance for 280 dmg/shot. ;)
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on January 19, 2017, 07:48:52 PM
I'll be interested to see what they do! I like the look of the vine-covered bow :)

And yes, I suppose I rarely find I have the inv space to want an off-hand weapon as the knight (if I do it'll often be a bow or throwing weapon) but I guess there may be some tactics with those staffs.
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on January 20, 2017, 05:14:46 PM
I guess there may be some tactics with those staffs.

It still isn't definite. Maybe I'll make the lightning and fire damage scale with magic skill. We're still a long way from version 1.0. I need to play the game more too, to see what kinds of decisions I would make on 10th or 20th run with similar choices. Currently I'm more focused on adding new stuff than testing (I play maybe 2-3 runs per day).
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on January 25, 2017, 12:07:26 PM
A few actual bug reports!

In runs where the bear is present (I think it's only when the bear is present), boxes and barrels sometimes break randomly and spontaneously regardless of whether the bear is near them or indeed whether you have the bear as a pet at all. Had that happen on a few occasions.

The executioner gets very upset and gets stuck in one place if you try to burn him (it may also be when he tries to do a specific attack after being burned, it's quite a hard one for me to test thoroughly). His legs disappear and he goes a bit glitchy.

I recently had a run where, after picking up the guard captain's sword on the battlements (as wizard), I got text saying "press d for quick attack" which turned up next to me every time I wielded the sword and wouldn't go away.
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Glaurung on January 25, 2017, 12:25:52 PM
The executioner gets very upset and gets stuck in one place if you try to burn him .... His legs disappear and he goes a bit glitchy.
I'm not familiar with the game, but in general this sounds like quite reasonable behaviour if you try to burn someone. I think I too would get very upset and go a bit glitchy; depending on the level of damage I might well get stuck in one place, especially if I had no legs left.
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on January 25, 2017, 12:59:14 PM
Reasonable perhaps, but it's a bit out of character given that blowing him up, poisoning him, etc, don't invoke similar reactions. It makes him rather easy to finish off, as on account of the lack of legs one can just hit him repeatedly with any regular attack. And oddly enough using any sort of special/rage attack on him seems to make his legs reappear, which is not very medically reasonable by any standards!
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on January 25, 2017, 02:51:38 PM
In runs where the bear is present (I think it's only when the bear is present), boxes and barrels sometimes break randomly and spontaneously regardless of whether the bear is near them or indeed whether you have the bear as a pet at all. Had that happen on a few occasions.

That's really strange. Could you activate the auto-recording in the Settings menu and confirm that on a replay when it happens the next time?

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The executioner gets very upset and gets stuck in one place if you try to burn him (it may also be when he tries to do a specific attack after being burned, it's quite a hard one for me to test thoroughly). His legs disappear and he goes a bit glitchy.

I have seen this one two days ago and I'm trying to hunt it down, but cannot reproduce it. It happened twice to me, but I didn't connect it with fire. He seems to get stuck in the "laser" animation and legs just start blinking. I just had a run where I burned him with arrows fired from the Brimstone bow, and he didn't glitch, so something really strange is happening there.

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I recently had a run where, after picking up the guard captain's sword on the battlements (as wizard), I got text saying "press d for quick attack" which turned up next to me every time I wielded the sword and wouldn't go away.

I added that notice because I noticed some players would only use the strong attack all the time. But, there's a bug that doesn't remove the message when you finally use the D attack. I fixed it yesterday, it will be in the next version.

Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on January 25, 2017, 03:06:04 PM
OK, I've turned on auto-record, I'll let you know if the exploding barrels thing happens again.
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on January 25, 2017, 03:08:58 PM
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The executioner gets very upset and gets stuck in one place if you try to burn him (it may also be when he tries to do a specific attack after being burned, it's quite a hard one for me to test thoroughly). His legs disappear and he goes a bit glitchy.

GOT IT! It was the fire afterall, thanks for reporting. It didn't happen to me because I never allowed him to shoot the laser after he was burned. The thing is that the burning animation uses the identifier "fire" in the game, but I completely forgot that, so when I added animations for the Executioner I named his laser-fire animation "fire" as well. Once you burn him, the laser fire animation would get mixed up with burning animation and the glitching would start.

Fix coming ASAP.
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on January 25, 2017, 09:15:40 PM
A new version is up with the bugfixes and the Troll Bridge. There's about 10% chance you might get it. Here's a video how I played through the game with the Glacier + Icicle:


The troll is at 1:30:

https://youtu.be/gU5bxCPfVmo?t=1m30s

Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on January 27, 2017, 11:19:25 PM
I like the troll bridge, more one-offs like that would be great :) And the new furniture in the third level is good too!

I saw someone got like 100,000 on a recent daily challenge, btw (Jan 26) - do you have any idea how? Also, it would be good to somewhere have a list of what actually gains how many points in the daily challenge, as I'm still not quite clear...
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on January 29, 2017, 09:20:58 PM
do you have any idea how?

No idea. Either cheating or found some exploit. I plan to track some hidden variables in the submitted hiscores so I can track it down and see whether the player is tempering with the score (in game's RAM) or has found some bug/glitch to make points.

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Also, it would be good to somewhere have a list of what actually gains how many points in the daily challenge, as I'm still not quite clear...

I plan to add that. Until then, here are the things that count: seen rooms, completed levels, collected coins (magic chest counts too), potions used, bombs exploded, scrolls used, gold chests unlocked, pets acquired. This means that you can use some bad potions/scrolls to get a higher score.

If two players are playing, it counts only for actions that the first player does.
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on January 29, 2017, 09:23:43 PM
OK, that was the list I had worked out as well, good :)
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on February 04, 2017, 06:37:28 PM
A new batch of weapons is coming soon in the game. Here's the Rogue Sword's special effect that hides you from the enemies:

(http://bigosaur.com/roguesword.gif)

This update will bring 2 new axes and 4 new swords with special effects. There are some other changes: thrown weapon damage now scales with Melee skill and I changed some items to make more sense: eating a Mushroom removes Hunger, drinking a Beer removes Hunger instead of removing Poison.

I also added a hidden score counter to the posted hiscores, so we can catch if some players try to cheat using CheatEngine or other program that manipulates score in RAM.

P.S. The game is featured in IndiePrize 2017 in Berlin next week (7-9 February). If you're coming make sure you drop by and play a demo. There will be some new stuff in it as well.

Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on February 08, 2017, 03:38:30 PM
OK, a question - is there a good tactic for rooms with sky-wizards (esp if there are 2), several guards, and no goblins? That's one of my biggest current issues; especially if there are two of them, the speed boost becomes quite OP if there aren't any goblins around to fight back, unless I'm missing something.
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on February 12, 2017, 08:28:51 PM
OK, a question - is there a good tactic for rooms with sky-wizards (esp if there are 2), several guards, and no goblins? That's one of my biggest current issues; especially if there are two of them, the speed boost becomes quite OP if there aren't any goblins around to fight back, unless I'm missing something.

I tend to save scrolls like Gamble, Barellize and Peace for those kind of rooms. I often dump some other weapons/items on previous levels just to be able to bring in such scrolls into the castle. Having a turtle pet and/or ice hammer (+icicle if possible) also helps a lot to kill the wizards quickly. If you're out of all of those, then bombs can help if you saved a couple - because the mages stop moving while they're casting spells. Of course, depending on the room layout and enemy positions it can be really hard to pull that off.

If there are a lot of traps in the room, you can trick the guards to get hurt that way. Also, if you have a lightning based weapon you can shoot+stun many of them at the same time, so saving mana for Supercharger or improving rage buildup for Thunderstriker is really important. Here's an example of a run I had recently where I cleared such rooms multiple times (1 mage only though) with Supercharger:

https://youtu.be/wIrMkQu1xEg?t=22m45s (https://youtu.be/wIrMkQu1xEg?t=22m45s)

If you only have basic weapons, it's really hard, so using Escape scroll or bombing one of the doors and getting out might be the best option. Not all enemies have to be defeated.
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on February 15, 2017, 12:02:32 PM
OK, that's basically how my strategy already goes - it just feels a bit too common that I literally *have* to go through rooms like that and often don't have the scrolls/kit I need to do it successfully. I've started picking up and using the speed-boost magic thingy a bit more which is helping, but nonetheless; sometimes it's just so fast/so many enemies that I don't have time to cross a room, bomb a door, and escape; I've been caught already by that point!
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on February 19, 2017, 07:31:47 PM
sometimes it's just so fast/so many enemies

Agreed. However, it's as-designed.  >:D

You do literally have to go through at least one of those rooms. The rooms are not completely random, there's a 10% probability of guards-only room, and the room before the boss room is always guards only (unless it's a shop). Since the game will probably have 5 levels on the first playthrough (you unlock levels 6 and 7 when you complete the 5th level for the first time and unlock the "hard mode") you're already deep in the game and the difficulty has to ramp up.

I don't have time to cross a room, bomb a door, and escape

Use Ice Hammer to buy some time, or Rogue Sword and just sneak through. ;)

I watched some video a couple of days ago and read some player comments on Enter the Gungeon vs The Binding of Isaac and this made me think about the game a little bit. I feel like the game should be hard, but you should be powerful. So, I think I will revert some stuff I nerfed recently. For example, I'm changing back the Ice Hammer to be rage based. Since Infinite Rage potion is removed, you can never have too much freezing  ;D I'll probably just shorten the default freeze time a little bit, but it should make it more fun to play.

I'm also considering to rework the rune system, have the Damage Rune (melee,archery,magic) and Range Rune (magic,ranged) combined and use the extra runes to power up some other aspects of the weapon (elemental damage, special effect duration, etc.). Not still sure how would that work, but I'd like to reduce number of useless items you might find.

Also, adding more potions with positive effects (currently it's around 55% good, 45% bad ratio) would make it less risky to drink potions and the players would be able to power up before they get into tough areas.

Still, I'm beating the game about 50% of the time with a mage, and around 30% of the time with Archer and a Knight which I feel is a good difficulty range I want to have. Currently I want the game to be more like Spelunky in that regard.
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on February 19, 2017, 08:32:02 PM
Yeah - I think I'm probably beating the game a slightly lower % than you, but if that's what you're aiming for then that seems about right :) I guess it may change once levels 4 onwards are in there, how strong the incentive is to save scrolls, etc.

Agreed that ice hammer would now be OK rage-based - especially now there are more weapons so less chance of getting it anyway. I really like the idea of doing that with the rune system; it would be very nice to occasionally be able to get a weapon and then add an elemental effect to it etc. As for potions, I more or less never drink potions unless I've ID-ed them or I've got a dragonfire potion handy at the moment, which may suggest the current risk is too high (though I'm quite a risk-averse player in some ways).
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on February 22, 2017, 11:43:31 PM
Due to some players complaining about the difficulty, I decided to avoid having Easy/Normal/Hard option, but to give players some powerful boosts until they manage to beat the bosses. The starting boosts are Books your Witch mother left for you.

At first, you get a Book of Life that gives you 100 extra HP. You keep getting this book until you defeat the Ogre Mom. This helps with the fact that the player is still learning the ropes and the goblins do a lot of damage.

After you beat the Ogre, the subsequent runs give you the Book of Ice which freezes enemies for 3 seconds every time you enter a new room. This helps from dying too quickly against the guards. You gain a couple of seconds to survey the room and position yourself.

After you beat the Dragon, you start getting the Book of Fire, which sets all enemies on fire as you enter.

After you beat the Executioner, you start getting a random item. Those items aren't as powerful as Mom's books, but still provide some help.

The idea is that once you reach Mom in the Dungeon, you will unlock her (you can play as her) and then you won't be getting items anymore.

Any thoughs or comments on these changes are welcome.

P.S. Beside the books, there are 6 new items and 2 new potion effects in the game. The new version is already up, so you can try it now.

P.P.S. There will be a fourth book - the Book of Death. It will allow you to kill yourself and come back as undead. This will change the game as you won't be able to heal using the health potions, but by killing the enemies. You will have an appearance of a skeleton and maybe you will be immune to some things, like the magic the skeleton mages will use in the Catacombs level. I still haven't figured out this completely, so I'm putting this book aside until I create the Catacombs level and all the enemies there. However, if you have some cool ideas about playing as an undead, I'd love to hear them.
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on February 24, 2017, 03:11:59 AM
Right, got all the new achievements - one thing to note, you don't currently seem to get the achievement for beating a boss if you barrel-roll-scroll it, I don't know if this is intentional!

I'll have a think about undeath - something like immunity to knockdown like the orc-thingies have would be a big and interesting change? Immunity to poison would make sense too, hard to poison a skeleton!
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on February 25, 2017, 01:28:13 PM
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you don't currently seem to get the achievement for beating a boss if you barrel-roll-scroll it, I don't know if this is intentional!

Yes. Also, Gamble scroll allows you to get the Dragon and Executioner achievement on the first level with goblins helping you beat the Executioner because they belong to different factions ;)

Quote
I'll have a think about undeath - something like immunity to knockdown like the orc-thingies have would be a big and interesting change?

I think it would be too hard to play without it. When you get surrounded on all sides getting knocked to the side is the only way to escape. Also, I feel like the skeletons should have even less poise than full bodied enemies.

Quote
Immunity to poison would make sense too, hard to poison a skeleton!

Yes, complete poison immunity is planned. And maybe inability to drink and eat since they have no stomach.

BTW, I was thinking how magic staves feel a bit weak, and the reasoning that you have no motivation to use the Life Staff or Heal Staff for combat. Because of this I'm changing the base orb damage for those from 6 to 10. I'm also buffing the Supercharger base damage from 6 to 8 to compensate for the higher mana cost of the lightning spell.
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on February 25, 2017, 09:11:05 PM
Approve of the magic staff tweaks, that sounds sensible :) And yes, that's a fair point regarding being knocked back.
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on February 27, 2017, 12:32:01 AM
A new version is coming soon. It features a new forest area (similar to the Troll area), where you need to stomp on the pests to get the rewards (they drop runestones):

(http://bigosaur.com/blog/images/witch-0134-garden.png)

And I have improved the UI to make the effect icons more understandable:

(http://bigosaur.com/blog/images/witch-0133-effectnumbers.png)

The Rogue Sword is getting an upgrade. When you are concealed, the next few attacks have Sneak Attack bonus which starts at +100 damage and quickly drops to zero. Basically, you can sneak up on one enemy and one-hit kill him, or maybe do about 150-200 damage to a boss if you swing the sword really fast. The bonus applies to any melee weapon.
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on March 02, 2017, 12:24:26 AM
I really like the pest stomping - I wonder if having more pests that are there for longer but only say a 50% chance of getting a runestone might be better? It feels like there are very few of the pests and it's all over quite fast. But it's a good minigame and I really like it :)

Also, looks like I topped the leaderboard for another month, I should let someone else have a chance really :P
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on March 03, 2017, 12:58:07 PM
(http://bigosaur.com/blog/images/witch-0135-boars.png)

The third themed forest area is the hunting ground. Well, not really hunting, but more like taming the beasts. Depending on the number of players playing there's one or more wild boars walking around. You have to chase them down, or hurt them from the distance to tame them. Once tamed, you can mount and ride them which gives you +2 speed.

While you are riding, all the damage taken is split between you and the animal. The boars eat all the food, which heals them. If you get the Hunger curse, you can remove it with the Dragonfire Potion, drink a Beer, eat a Mushroom, or find a way to get off the boar. For example, if a Goblin Shaman drops a meteor on your or someone stomps a Voodoo Doll you're marked with.
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on March 03, 2017, 01:01:23 PM
Piggles :D

I've had some good runs lately (sadly not during the daily challenges in the last few days, but ah well), and worked out some nice tactics with the retaliator - if you can get poison immunity and the retaliator, and either some health potions or toughness potions or both, you can currently stand in front of a poison firer for a bit, take say 30pts of damage then heal up before going into the executioner level, and be doing some very, very big hits when you get there!
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on March 03, 2017, 01:22:00 PM
Piggles :D

I've only played about 20 testing runs with them and I feel really sad when the enemies manage to kill them. But, they stay on the screen, so you can revive them with the Life Staff ;)

BTW, they aren't in the Steam version yet, I need to do more testing with various effects/situations. The version will be 1.6.5 or higher.

I've had some good runs lately (sadly not during the daily challenges in the last few days, but ah well), and worked out some nice tactics with the retaliator - if you can get poison immunity and the retaliator, and either some health potions or toughness potions or both, you can currently stand in front of a poison firer for a bit, take say 30pts of damage then heal up before going into the executioner level, and be doing some very, very big hits when you get there!

Yes! Similar with fire/ice immunity. But the poison immunity is even cooler if you get Mushroom level in the forest and bring those 11 mushrooms to the castle. You can buff the Retaliator like crazy and then just one-shot the boss ;)
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on March 03, 2017, 10:32:41 PM
Look forward to seeing them, anyhow :) Will the other levels each have some special rooms possible as well?

And yes, I hadn't thought of that... it's interesting with the challenges at the moment how the points system really changes my playstyle, especially pushing me to drink extra potions etc to get points. I play very differently when I'm just doing runs on my own!
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on March 05, 2017, 10:24:00 AM
Will the other levels each have some special rooms possible as well?

Yes, but not so many. The forest should have about a dozen in the final game, because you play the forest every time you start a new game and I want to make sure it's always interesting. I already have some ideas like a Jousting tournament, a pond for fishing, long-jump competition, ...

especially pushing me to drink extra potions etc to get points

Yes. I have seen this too, even if I know the potion is bad, I would still drink it for extra points. But I guess that's good - it makes the daily challenge special.

Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on March 05, 2017, 04:38:06 PM
I'm creating the sorcerer character currently and she has a staff that can create food. I'm not sure what would be a better description for the staff: "Provides food" or "Provisions food" ?
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Glaurung on March 05, 2017, 05:05:43 PM
I would choose "Provides food", or maybe just "Makes food". "Provisions" is already a noun meaning "food"; it's sometimes also used as a verb meaning "provides", but I think only in specific technical contexts.
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on March 06, 2017, 11:06:27 PM
Agreed with Glaurung :)

I got killed by the troll in the daily challenge again... I should really get over my pride and actually pay the fee sometimes, I just keep fighting the thing and dying because I don't want to pay :P

Also - I'm not sure there are enough things to counter poison at the moment. The two potions that do it aren't that common, and the number of poison shooters in the third level is quite large potentially...
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on March 08, 2017, 10:55:25 AM
Agreed with Glaurung :)

Thanks to both of you. I had to rush her into the game last night because of an important bugfix. The quest to unlock the mage will come in later.

I got killed by the troll in the daily challenge again... I should really get over my pride and actually pay the fee sometimes, I just keep fighting the thing and dying because I don't want to pay :P

 :o  ;D  >:(

I often pay to pass and come back later when I have better weapons to get my gold back ;)

Also - I'm not sure there are enough things to counter poison at the moment. The two potions that do it aren't that common, and the number of poison shooters in the third level is quite large potentially...

There's also an amulet which you can get at the start or find it somewhere along the way. I feel like adding more means to stop poison would make the amulet worthless.

Also, playing while poisoned adds excitement  >:D
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on March 08, 2017, 12:44:20 PM
I think it's the fact that poison from the shooters seems to be permanent and doesn't go away even when you reach zero health - it's worse than fire, because you never really get a chance to recover, and it's both harder to cure and bites harder than hunger. So if you didn't get the amulet, antidote, or dragonfire on that run, poison is just a death sentence which annoying and frustrating. The poison from eg the mushrooms is fine and far more fun as that only lasts for a certain number of battles, so you have a big incentive to rush some battles and take some risks. But it seems a big penalty if you didn't happen to find the right items and got hit by a poison shooter for it to be "this will keep draining all your health permanently".
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on March 08, 2017, 10:37:59 PM
if you didn't get the amulet, antidote, or dragonfire

Retort also helps. Carry it with you and create potions until you get one of those.

But the best way is to simply avoid going close to poison spitters. I often take a hit from enemies instead of going into the middle of the screen.
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on March 08, 2017, 11:41:42 PM
Yeah, I guess - I suppose my feeling is that it's odd that the poison is so much nastier than the fire or ice shooters, as mentally the player probably expects them to be roughly equal. But fair enough :)

I'm liking the sorceress for playstyle btw - super powerful when combined with the retaliator and the standing-in-front-of-an-ice-shooter trick!
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on March 14, 2017, 12:37:50 PM
I'm liking the sorceress for playstyle btw - super powerful when combined with the retaliator and the standing-in-front-of-an-ice-shooter trick!

Yup. Especially if you get a Mana Canteen early and save up all the mana for later ;)

Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on March 15, 2017, 12:32:09 AM
Indeed :) Though I'm mostly running with an archer as my main challenge character at the moment, the ability to deal really big hits on third level is definitely a plus.
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on March 15, 2017, 08:04:50 PM
(http://bigosaur.com/blog/images/witch-0142-golem600.png)

A new boss is added to the forest area. He starts showing up after you defeat the Ogre Mama, or you play 20+ games. As you would expect from a golem, he is immune to poison. This one being an Earth Golem makes him also immune to meteors and petrifying. Now, this might seem tough, but he's still a first level boss, so once you learn his attacks it shouldn't be much harder to beat him.
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on March 17, 2017, 06:28:11 PM
I'm making a bunch a of new magic staffs. So far, I have the Turret staff, that creates a standalone copy of the staff that hovers mid-air and shoots at the enemies on its own.

The second one I'm making is an Earthquake Staff. Not being a native speaker, I'm unsure what to put as the description. Maybe "evokes earthquakes". Alternatives I considered as "produces", "triggers", "initiates", "induces", "incites". Which word would you use?
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Glaurung on March 17, 2017, 06:35:26 PM
I think "triggers" is probably best. All the others also mean "cause something to start", but (in a typical English-language way) each one has a subtle shade of meaning that's not quite right for earthquakes.
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on March 18, 2017, 01:01:05 AM
Agreed with Glaurung, triggers is the best option.

I like the golem boss! I think he's mid-range between the ogre mama and the dragon so far, I'm not sure it's so easy to take him on with basic weapons, especially as the knight, but he mostly feels about right in terms of difficulty :)
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on March 18, 2017, 08:26:52 AM
I think "triggers" is probably best. All the others also mean "cause something to start", but (in a typical English-language way) each one has a subtle shade of meaning that's not quite right for earthquakes.

Thanks.

I just realized I need more text to explain that "the stronger your magic, the more rocks the earthquake destroys", so I'll probably put something like "stronger magic destroys more rocks" (<- if you can come up with a shorter phrase, please let me know) and avoid the whole "triggering" business. Players will deduce that it's earthquake from the weapon's name and the effect they see on the screen.
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on March 18, 2017, 01:36:30 PM
Yeah, that sounds fine :) I'll have a think, though I'm not sure if the wording can get much more condensed than that...
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on March 21, 2017, 11:59:02 PM
(http://bigosaur.com/blog/images/witch-0144-king.png)

After you beat the Executioner, you proceed to the throne. The king greets you and explains that your witch mother wasn't really kidnapped. The king called for her because he has a major problem in the catacombs: Someone or something is raising the dead, and she's the only one who can stop it.

You can choose to peacefully enter the dungeon and find your way to the catacombs. Or you can attack the king. If you defeat him and his guards, you can take the Royal Scepter, which enables you do summon castle guards to aid you.

Beside the scepter, a bunch of new weapons are added to the game: the Shepherd Staff turns enemies into sheep, the Turret Staff creates standalone copy of the staff that autonomously shoots at the enemies and the Earthquake Staff knocks down all the enemies and destroys some rocks. The stronger your Magic skill, the more rocks will be broken. For combat, Earthquake Staff is a melee weapon - you can strike or knock down enemies, similar to Warbreaker Hammer. The Earthquake Staff is currently the only weapon that scales both with magic and melee skill. This means that you can upgrade it with both Warlock and Blacksmith runestones.

Beside all this, two new room types have been added. First one is the Scroll shop, which sometimes shows up as an alternative to the Potion Shop. The shop offers all four types of scrolls for that run at a low price, and you can buy an identify scroll for only 10 gold coins. The second one is a special room in the castle where the Ogre Mama is fighting the castle guards. It can only show up if the Ogre Mama boss is absent from the forest.

Additionally, the Fireball Staff now adds 1-battle fire immunity to the caster who activates the fireball buff.

I also fixed the hitbox for the sword strike of the Guard Captain. It was wrong on the first strike, so she could sometimes hit targets that are far away from her (sometimes even on the opposite side of the room). This is fixed in version 1.8.6.
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on March 22, 2017, 12:48:32 PM
Ahh, I think that hitbox error may be what was exploding boxes randomly sometimes! New stuff all looks great, look forward to playing it... (I do question whether the King could have just told you about this *before* you slaughtered most of his guards, that said!)

I still think you should add a "tavern" shop that has a different look/set of items but always sells at least 2-3 beer, with other options maybe including the goat, the dog, a basic bow, and a key (and consequently remove beer from the potion shop's options, it feels odd to me buying booze from a potion seller for some reason and it could be done quite nicely to a theme). :)

(I also still think that poison shooters in the castle level are OP and should be more like poison 5b rather than permanent poison, just got caught by them on another run - I really do think there needs to be a 4b/5b limit which would actually make the player feel incentivised to fight on with low health rather than just feeling like they may as well give up, which is how I usually feel in those circumstances.)
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on March 23, 2017, 02:23:05 PM
I still think you should add a "tavern" shop that has a different look/set of items but always sells at least 2-3 beer, with other options maybe including the goat, the dog, a basic bow, and a key (and consequently remove beer from the potion shop's options, it feels odd to me buying booze from a potion seller for some reason and it could be done quite nicely to a theme). :)

Nice idea. I was thinking about something similar, perhaps with an option to hire a Bushido (the shop guard guy). However, I feel like he's OP, so he would have to be expensive (say 500 gold), but then it wouldn't make sense to have that in the forest. So, I just set it aside until I figure out something better.
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on March 23, 2017, 02:42:23 PM
Could you have a hireable companion in the tavern room that changed partly depending on level? So a tavern in the forest would give you the chance to hire someone fairly useless, but one in the castle would give you the Bushido option...
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on March 24, 2017, 08:48:51 AM
Could you have a hireable companion in the tavern room that changed partly depending on level? So a tavern in the forest would give you the chance to hire someone fairly useless, but one in the castle would give you the Bushido option...

Good idea. I think that could work.
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on March 25, 2017, 06:09:30 PM
(I also still think that poison shooters in the castle level are OP and should be more like poison 5b rather than permanent poison, just got caught by them on another run - I really do think there needs to be a 4b/5b limit which would actually make the player feel incentivised to fight on with low health rather than just feeling like they may as well give up, which is how I usually feel in those circumstances.)

I was thinking a lot about this yesterday because I'm making a Hornet boss which has a poison attack. And then I figured out what might be the problem: do you know that the Healer NPC (the one that shows up in Potion Shop) has a staff you can use the remove the poison? And it always drops when you kill her.

To recap, if you get permanent poison you can:


I feel like there's enough options to remove poison, you just have to be prepared. If you see a Potion Shop, maybe it's time to risk it now and have a poison-removal option with you at all times. Just like carrying a potion or Retort it takes an inventory slot, so it's a trade-off player needs to consider.

Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on March 25, 2017, 06:17:37 PM
BTW, here's a new video


I got a Mana Canteen and no useful magic items/weapons, so I had around 30 mana when I defeated the King and took the scepter. So I summoned about a dozen guards to fight for me. That part starts here:

https://youtu.be/z86JYOAwTTo?t=26m22s


Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on March 29, 2017, 01:38:38 PM
(http://bigosaur.com/blog/images/witch-0147-hornetboss.png)

A new boss is added to the Battlements: A giant Hornet Queen. She can attack you or lay eggs from which the regular hornet enemies hatch. Both the Queen and the regular hornets have poisonous attack. The poison wears off after one battle.

(http://bigosaur.com/blog/images/witch-0146-hornetsting.gif)

This boss starts showing up after you defeat a Dragon (either a fire or the ice one).
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on March 30, 2017, 10:16:55 AM
I'm taking a bit of a break from the daily challenges, looks like there'll be plenty more to murder me when I get back :)

It's interesting how much some of these tweaks change my strategy - I used to regularly run and do the boss level for forest as soon as I saw it, in case it gave me something useful like the mana carrier that I could build up with. I'm completely stopping doing that since the golem was added, I'm definitely finding the golem far harder than the ogre mama and possibly harder than the dragon, especially trying to tackle it in melee where it has very big close-quarters attacks and you can only get a solid set of hits during one of its attack moves (head-bowling, which it doesn't do that often).
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on March 30, 2017, 01:14:13 PM
It's interesting how much some of these tweaks change my strategy - I used to regularly run and do the boss level for forest as soon as I saw it

Funny, I was doing the same. Now I always make sure I have a Voodoo Doll with me before the boss fight. It makes it so much easier because you can throw it anywhere on the screen, stand on it and make him drop meteors on it.

head-bowling, which it doesn't do that often

You can trigger it if you stand right in front of it.

Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on March 30, 2017, 08:26:58 PM
Ahh, hadn't worked that out - I've been terrified of standing in front of it in case it giant-fist-hits or rolls into a ball at me... and yes, the voodoo doll does seem like a good plan!
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on April 01, 2017, 08:44:33 PM
(http://bigosaur.com/blog/images/witch-0150-meetfiremage-amanda.png)

The Pyromancer character is ready (not yet in the Steam version, I need to do a lot of testing first). He starts with the Fireball Staff and has permanent fire immunity. This means you can walk on campfires which makes some rooms much easier. The fire spitting traps in the castle and the Red Dragon's breath only do a small impact damage to him, but cannot set him on fire. Because of all these advantages he starts the game only with 3 health bars (60 HP).

He can be problematic for co-op, as you can easily set the other player on fire. A good strategy is to give the Fireball staff to the other player to activate, so he gets fire immunity. Or, if the other player is a magic caster, just swap the staffs at the start and play like that.

To unlock the Pyromancer, you have to find Amanda somewhere in the forest and escort her to one of the shops in the castle. This means that you have to go all the way through the Battlements level without her dying. It's a very challenging and interesting quest to complete.
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on April 02, 2017, 11:59:10 PM
Ooh, looking forward to meeting the pyromancer :)

Recent testing notes: I've encountered the hornet a couple of times now - works well and seems balanced, similar toughness to the dragon, the second time round the poison did the damage and I got taken down shortly thereafter, first time I had a powerful wizard with good spread of orbs and took her down without injury. The mana cost for a couple of items doesn't quite stack up to me - I think the bag of bombs costs is one or two too high, and the royal sceptre perhaps a little low? I'm still not convinced on the eternal poison shooters either after some more testing - it's not because I think it's unfair per se, but because it feels too powerful for a little dart-shooter compared to the fire and ice ones where you can recover more easily: I'd be more inclined to switch and have a permanent poison effect coming from the hornet queen's sting and only a temporary one from the shooters, because the boss feels more appropriate as a really powerful effect that the player should prepare and use inventory slots for, whereas a really powerful effect that you need to actively prepare for coming from a regular bubble-shooter just feels embarrassing. Of course it's your call though, and my problem with it is more about the feel of the thing than a real balance issue. I also used the turret staff for the first time and killed the king, both of which work well and are fun. The summoned guard didn't seem to have a health bar which confused me a bit? I've still not managed to find and use the shepherd staff yet, but I'm looking forward to doing so :)

Also, one query - will the strawberry wand/staff be available other than as that specific character? It could make for some nice combos with other characters (as it allows keeping a boar alive much longer) if it was available as a rare item in chests or rocks or something.
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on April 03, 2017, 08:33:06 AM
I think the bag of bombs costs is one or two too high

Bombs have many uses and can make any run OP since you can use a bomb to escape any room except the boss room. I initially tried a couple of runs with cost being 5, and I noticed that I would only use mana for bombs. Also, if two or more players are playing any lower cost would mean creating a lot of bombs.

Quote
the royal sceptre perhaps a little low?

Possibly. I plan to balance that once we have 4th level (Dungeon).

Quote
I'd be more inclined to switch and have a permanent poison effect coming from the hornet queen's sting and only a temporary one from the shooters, because the boss feels more appropriate as a really powerful effect that the player should prepare and use inventory slots for, whereas a really powerful effect that you need to actively prepare for coming from a regular bubble-shooter just feels embarrassing.

I never considered that point of view. I'll have to think about it and maybe change it.

Quote
The summoned guard didn't seem to have a health bar which confused me a bit?

In the first version they were all the same color, so I thought that would be a good way to separate summoned ones from regular ones. But now that we have two colors, perhaps I should add a HP bar.

Quote
will the strawberry wand/staff be available other than as that specific character? It could make for some nice combos with other characters (as it allows keeping a boar alive much longer) if it was available as a rare item in chests or rocks or something.

I guess I could add it as a low-chance drop in the rocks, just like the Snake Staff.

Thanks.
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on April 06, 2017, 11:12:09 PM
The VioleNt Knight is a new boss for the 3rd level (Castle):

(http://bigosaur.com/blog/images/witch-0151-violent.png)

They come in tandems and start showing up after you defeat the Executioner. The knights are small in size and have a moderate amount of HP, but are really quick. They have a regular strike attack and a dashing attack similar to the playable Knight character. One of the knights always drops his sword, which players can pick up and use. The sword has the greatest reach of all the swords in the game and does 10 base damage (+12 for strong attack). The sword's special ability is giving full rage to the player after every kill.

Beside the new boss, I made several bug-fixes and improvements:

- The Hornet Queen now tries to catch up to the player before doing the sting attack
- Telepathy potion effects now stack over multiple battles if you drink more than one
- Dashing attacks now have a damage threshold below which they cannot be interrupted
- Escape scroll no longer opens the doors blocked with the stone rubble
- Added a sound effect for the Royal Scepter summoning effect
- The Strawberry staff can be found randomly in the rocks sometimes
- Flying units and thrown goblin bombs don't get stuck on locked gold chests anymore
- Health Bar is now shown for player-summoned guards
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on April 06, 2017, 11:58:53 PM
Aie, more fast enemies, my reaction times can't cope! They look very cool though, I look forward to them murdering me a lot :)
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on April 09, 2017, 12:10:20 AM
I need to get more cautious on daily challenges. I think I've played so many of them that I tend to go for broke and try and build a really powerful character very fast, so either I get right through and have a very solid character by the end or I die really early doing something stupid like trying to rob a shop with almost no bonuses... :/
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on April 10, 2017, 01:00:17 PM
I need to get more cautious on daily challenges. I think I've played so many of them that I tend to go for broke and try and build a really powerful character very fast, so either I get right through and have a very solid character by the end or I die really early doing something stupid like trying to rob a shop with almost no bonuses... :/

 :o

Yeah, I often die when I get too confident as well :)
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on April 10, 2017, 04:54:48 PM
Occasionally I can do it - for example, if there's an item like a relevant scroll it's often just possible to shoot an arrow then run down, grab the scroll and use it just before the bushido gets to you. But it's difficult!
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on April 12, 2017, 08:09:53 AM
Occasionally I can do it - for example, if there's an item like a relevant scroll it's often just possible to shoot an arrow then run down, grab the scroll and use it just before the bushido gets to you. But it's difficult!

My favorite tactics in such cases is to fill up the rage and grab a sword that has a dashing attack. Then I stand to the left of the shop keeper and do the dash attack to the right. As the shop keeper is hit, Bushido comes out to his right and gets hit by sweeping attack that knocks him down. Plenty of time to pick up and use the scroll before he gets up. This is especially easy if the scroll is on the right-most pedestal.
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on April 13, 2017, 01:41:44 AM
Bug report - I shot the King with a petrifying arrow recently and he didn't respond/the fight didn't start, might want to check that out.
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on April 13, 2017, 10:29:52 AM
Bug confirmed. I have no idea why it happens as I have an explicit check to trigger if he gets petrified. Need to do some debugging. The fix will be in the next version.

BTW, I also found a bug that the game would sometimes generate a maze with backdoor into the king's room, so you can skip the boss fight on 3rd level. I'll fix that one as well.

P.S. I accidentally hit "modify" instead of "quote" and at first edited your post :( instead of creating a new reply. Sorry about that. Is there some way to revert it to the original?
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Glaurung on April 13, 2017, 12:56:29 PM
P.S. I accidentally hit "modify" instead of "quote" and at first edited your post :( instead of creating a new reply. Sorry about that. Is there some way to revert it to the original?
Not that I'm aware of, unfortunately - I don't think the forum software maintains an editing history for posts. If you find you've accidentally gone into "modify" in future, use your browser's Back button to exit without making changes.
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on April 13, 2017, 02:47:36 PM
If you find you've accidentally gone into "modify" in future, use your browser's Back button to exit without making changes.

Of course. The problem was that I didn't realize that right away and thought it was some glitch that the "quote" markup wasn't there, so I added it around Jubal's text and replied ;) Only after I submitted and have seen his profile picture alongside "my" message did I figure out what happened.

I guess the missing "quote" markup will be a red flag the next time this happens to me.
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on April 13, 2017, 03:02:22 PM
I had an excellent gamble recently - gambled a pair of viole(n)t knights into an ogre mama and an ice dragon, which was good fun and complete mayhem :P
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on April 13, 2017, 04:50:35 PM
I had an excellent gamble recently - gambled a pair of viole(n)t knights into an ogre mama and an ice dragon, which was good fun and complete mayhem :P

ROFL  ;D
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on April 13, 2017, 09:44:05 PM
(http://bigosaur.com/blog/images/witch-0152-crystal.png)

The Crystal Wizard is a new 3rd level boss. He starts showing up randomly in the castle after you have defeated the Executioner. He's similar to regular small enemies (i.e. you can stun him, freeze him, etc.) but he has a magic staff which he can use to shoot at you, the same way the playable magic characters shoot. He has +2 orbs and a mana canteen with practically unlimited mana, which allows him to use the staff's special ability at will.

His weapon is a Teleport Staff, which can be used to teleport to the opposite side of the screen. You can pick it up and use it yourself. Teleporting to the opposite side costs 2 mana, and you can also press the regular attack button to return to the position from which you teleported. This other action is free, but can only be done once. After that you would need to spend mana to teleport again. Some levels have hard to reach locations like walled off areas or parts across the chasm. These levels have a special preset teleport location, which is revealed if one of the players picks up the teleport staff at any point of the game. You can use the teleport staff to reach those places and return. That also includes the areas behind the shops in the forest, so now you can go there and break the barrel without needing two pets (bear+dog) to get the items. The teleport return point remains active even if you leave the room, but you have to be inside the room to teleport back to it.

The teleport staff can also be found in gold chests, shops and pedestals in the locked treasure rooms or blocked challenge rooms.

Beside the new boss and the new staff, there are other changes. I added a couple different texts for the signs in the forest shops. I fixed the bug when the guards wouldn't attack you if you petrified the king and sometimes the level generator would create a shop adjacent to the king's room, allowing you to skip the boss fight in the castle.
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on April 14, 2017, 11:36:31 PM
Looking forward to meeting the new boss & equipment, good stuff :D

And yes, I don't think I've *ever* had a bear and a dog on the forest level simultaneously: I may be grabbing more of those barrels in future!

EDIT: And then of course today's daily challenge *did* have a bear and dog on the forest, and I met my first crystal wizard! He didn't seem too tough a boss - though the fact I was a fast moving wizard & using a decent staff with spread-shot orbs helped, the lack of ability to deal real hard hits makes the CW a bit less vicious than most of the other bosses. It was an enjoyable fight though, I guess it felt like a good duel more than a big gribbly boss but I actually really liked that. I was surprised I got that far - I accidentally let a bomb off in the forest whilst fighting so I didn't get the main gold chest or get through the rock-door, plus I ended up getting 2 health-down potions early on. Fortunately, I found a replicator scroll and used it on a speed amulet, and got some magic splits on second level, so I wasn't at all tough but was dealing some good spread-shots and regularly using poison and just about managed to fight my way through third level (which was a tougher one than usual, there were like 4 or 5 rooms with just castle guards, I used bombs between rooms a couple of times to make my magic last longer and I probably had a bit of luck with some of the super high speed guards running into traps that I just missed). It was a good run though :)
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on April 15, 2017, 10:46:12 AM
the lack of ability to deal real hard hits makes the CW a bit less vicious than most of the other bosses.

Idk, he's the hardest 3rd level boss to me. I can beat him maybe 70% of the time, while I beat the others 90% of the time. If you're slow or lack some decent damage from the distance (arrows, magic, thrown weapons) he can be really hard as you need to dodge his orbs, guards and also try to hit him. But he's definitely different and requires different tactics, which I'm sure the players will appreciate.
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on April 15, 2017, 10:41:22 PM
Yeah, I may well change my mind when I try and tackle him with a melee fighter!
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on April 19, 2017, 03:34:35 PM
Hey, I watched a recording of your Twitch stream. It was pretty cool.  :D
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on April 20, 2017, 12:54:21 AM
Thankyou! I was annoyed that it ended with me getting piled on rather than getting to a third level boss, but learning to talk whilst playing the faster battles is really really hard...
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on April 24, 2017, 10:44:11 PM
I see you had over 34000 points in yesterday's daily challenge. Was it something special?
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on April 24, 2017, 11:32:50 PM
Ah yes - I have a bug to report! :P

If you have two replicator scrolls (which I did) you can literally keep using one to replicate the other forever which completely breaks the daily challenge system. I just got bored after about 10,000 points of doing it...
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on April 25, 2017, 08:46:39 PM
If you have two replicator scrolls (which I did) you can literally keep using one to replicate the other forever which completely breaks the daily challenge system. I just got bored after about 10,000 points of doing it...

Thanks. I have no idea how to fix it though. I could simply remove points for scroll usage... not sure if that would hurt the game. I though about simply not giving points for usage of replica, but it feels inconsistent - especially since you could replicate some other useful scroll or item. Or maybe I should add a magic barrier and replicate scrolls would refuse to work on other replicate scrolls.

BTW, I re-evaluated the whole poison thing. Sometimes you might get a run where simply the gods of random number generator aren't in your favor and it's really hard to remove poison. You could sacrifice an item slot for it, but it somehow feels like it isn't fun to play a game like that. So I decided to reduce the poison spitter effect from unlimited to 5-battle poison. You can clear 2-3 battles while you still have some HP left and then you have a challenge of surviving a couple of rooms with 1 HP.

I plan to add a "hard mode" to the game at some point, and maybe all poison will be permanent there, but for a "normal" game it will have some limit.
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on April 25, 2017, 11:54:08 PM
I think just make replicators refuse to work on each other would seem the simplest solution.

Agree with the poison change, that sounds reasonable :)
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on May 10, 2017, 09:07:48 PM
A new version is up with some improvements to the easy mode, and a couple of fixes.

Most important change is that arrow shooting animation has been changed (for all characters). After firing the first arrow, the characters no longer reset to idle position, but transition to grab the next arrow instead (if you're still holding the key). That changes the arrow shooting frequency from 200+ frames to about 100 frames per shot. Only for arrows 2 and beyond. The first shot still takes 108 frames.

I also increased the base damage for bows to make the archer more on par with other heroes in late game. Since there aren't many ways to increase the archery skill, my reasoning was that, with a bunch of buffs, you should be able to one-shot regular enemies. This makes archers a little bit OP vs bosses, but they are still inferior in close combat with regular enemies so it evens out. Or at least, I feel like it does. Early game is now easier with archer, but late game is harder (except for bosses).

BTW, I'm currently adding a way to enter a custom seed, so you'll be able to replay some games if desired. And I'm preparing stuff for the dungeon level. Hopefully it will be ready in June.
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on May 10, 2017, 10:10:16 PM
Couple of points on easy mode if you haven't picked these up yet: last I played it you can still get the blood mixer (which is useless), and it spawned the Ogre Mama & her hut within a regular room a couple of times for some strange reason.

I often play as the archer & hadn't been finding it too bad; I'll let you know how I do with the new version. I think the archer had been under-powered on easy mode more than in main game (because of the lack of variant-type arrows which are usually pretty vital for archers).

Looking forward to the dungeon level!
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on May 11, 2017, 06:17:20 PM
last I played it you can still get the blood mixer (which is useless)

I completely forgot about that. Will fix.

Quote
it spawned the Ogre Mama & her hut within a regular room a couple of times for some strange reason.

I have seen that one as well and fixed it earlier today, so the fix will be in the next version.

Quote
I often play as the archer & hadn't been finding it too bad; I'll let you know how I do with the new version. I think the archer had been under-powered on easy mode more than in main game (because of the lack of variant-type arrows which are usually pretty vital for archers).

Yes. I even though about disallowing archer in the easy mode, esp. because it's really hard to aim in multiplayer (enemies are chasing other players and not lining up with you) and I expect easy mode to mostly be played in multiplayer. You cannot unlock him in easy mode anyway.
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on May 13, 2017, 11:46:15 PM
Reaction: I think the anim change is good, but I think the damage boost is larger than it needs to be - it doesn't make much difference but looks/feels a bit OP on early rooms.
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on May 14, 2017, 05:14:39 PM
Reaction: I think the anim change is good, but I think the damage boost is larger than it needs to be - it doesn't make much difference but looks/feels a bit OP on early rooms.

Yes, it's definitely OP in early rooms, however, once you get to 3rd level it still feels underpowered compared to melee/magic (except the boss fights). Even if you power enough to get 100+ damage/hit, it still takes too long to fire an arrow in close-quarters situations. At least, that's my feeling after playing about a dozen games so far.

Perhaps it's too early to make the final decision. I'm soon going to add the dungeon to the mix and then we'll see how it would feel.
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on May 16, 2017, 02:06:26 PM
I've never found that an issue: there's a bit of maneuvering skill involving starting to nock an arrow in the opposite direction so you can then run round and fire it, and in lining lots of enemies up to use the rage attack, but both are quite possible. The rage attack in later levels with the archer is extremely powerful (and was even before this change) - it often allows me to all but clear a room with one shot. It might just be my playstyle being more closely suited to playing an archer, perhaps.

And yes, I agree that the dungeon could change a lot of the balance yet again!
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on May 19, 2017, 03:57:49 PM
I'm working on the Dungeon level. For the first version it will have 3 new enemies and a new boss. Of course, a new background theme and new objects and traps as well.

(http://bigosaur.com/blog/images/witch-0157-butcher.png)

The planned name for this boss is "The Butcher". It sounds a bit brutal to me. This game is played by kids as well (esp. parent + kid combination), so I'm not sure having a "butcher" boss is a good idea? It's hard for me to "feel" that as I'm not a native speaker. Do you have some better idea for the name?

Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on May 20, 2017, 11:50:55 PM
I don't feel like "butcher" is much worse than say "executioner" which you've used already. I guess I tend to think of a butcher initially in the sense of a friendly person who sells you bits of meat in a shop rather than its meaning as a killer! What attacks does it have, out of interest?

Looks good though, either way! :)
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on May 21, 2017, 12:38:04 AM
I guess I tend to think of a butcher initially in the sense of a friendly person who sells you bits of meat in a shop rather than its meaning as a killer!

Ah, awesome. In Serbian we have two distinct words: the man in the meat shop is "mesar" and the man who actually slaughters the animals is "koljač" and we often translate "butcher" to the "bad" one.

Yesterday I set the name to "Simerian Butcher" because the "Butcher" felt too short. I guess with this prefix it would seem like a notorious killer, right? Looks like it would be better to simply have Butcher or "The Butcher". Is that true?

What attacks does it have, out of interest?

Don't you like surprises? :)

1. He has an overhead strike with the mace - slams it to the ground. Upon impact, the spikes detach and fly into 7 different directions. The mace itself does a lot of damage, the spikes only do 10.

2. He quickly swings the knife in a circle striking any players below and behind him. After a couple of rounds, he suddenly stops and stabs in front of him.

I tried to balance the attacks in such way that he's equally hard to fight with melee or magic/ranged characters.

You can stun him, but the recovery is much faster than the Ogre Mama and the Executioner.
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on May 22, 2017, 10:20:41 AM
Ah, awesome. In Serbian we have two distinct words: the man in the meat shop is "mesar" and the man who actually slaughters the animals is "koljač" and we often translate "butcher" to the "bad" one.

Yesterday I set the name to "Simerian Butcher" because the "Butcher" felt too short. I guess with this prefix it would seem like a notorious killer, right? Looks like it would be better to simply have Butcher or "The Butcher". Is that true?
I really like "Simerian Butcher" as a name - you could just use "The Butcher", but I quite like names that give a sense of place & space, it gives more of an impression of depth to the world of the game :)

Don't you like surprises? :)
I've played this game long enough to know that surprises have a high tendency to kill me :P
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on May 27, 2017, 12:19:17 AM
I updated the game trailer with all the new content:


I also finished the animations and AI for the 3 enemies and one boss for the Dungeon. Still waiting on the artist to complete all the objects and props and then I'll start designing room layouts. I expect Dungeon to be ready mid-June.
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on May 27, 2017, 12:56:18 AM
Nice :) And I finished my Doctor Who Sontarans skinpack too, that's now got its own thread here & is ready to download!
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on May 29, 2017, 01:48:01 PM
Here are some elements for the Dungeon levels:

http://imgur.com/a/Btdb0

Soon everything will be prepared, and then I'll start designing the rooms.
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on May 30, 2017, 12:06:19 AM
Looks excellent, well done! :)
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on June 02, 2017, 08:24:00 AM
The 4th level is ready. You descend into the dungeon where all the prisoners have been set free from their cells. Three new enemy types await you: a thief, a bandit and an assassin.

(http://bigosaur.com/blog/images/witch-0160-stolen.png)

The thief tries to jump on your back. If he succeeds, he starts stealing away all the items from your inventory. If he finds a bomb, he will immediately use it. You can knock him off if you use a rage attack, or find some way to hit him - including meteors, bouncing orbs or via a voodoo doll. Also, if anything knocks you down, he will fall off as well. The thieves use a curved dagger, which is a new weapon with a throwing attack and backstab damage bonus that you can also use yourself.

(http://bigosaur.com/blog/images/witch-0160-muggers.png)

The bandit is quick and uses a Morning Star that does a lot of damage. You also use this weapon if they drop it. The bandits will try to surround you from two sides, so watch them carefully.

(http://bigosaur.com/blog/images/witch-0160-poison.png)

Assassins have a short poisonous sword and a shield. They move and attack similar to the castle Guard Captains, but poison attack makes them really dangerous.

To counter all the shielded enemies, there's a new weapon in the game: The Excalibur. You can sometimes find this legendary sword in a forest, stuck in a rock. Once you retrieve it, you can cut through enemy shields as if they weren't holding any.

(http://bigosaur.com/blog/images/witch-0159-dungeon-props.png)

The dungeon features a new level style, with a couple of new trap types, a new treasure chest type and new music theme as well.
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on June 05, 2017, 01:00:35 AM
I like the new stuff, good work :) I've only got as far as the new boss once, though I did beat it that time. I'll do a proper front page about this tomorrow - I'm knackered at the moment, have been at a big boardgame convention promoting Exilian this weekend.
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on June 13, 2017, 01:30:42 PM
I've been playing really badly recently, I'm too tired and keep dying early from loss of concentration so I'm rarely getting to the fourth level. :/ Anyhow, some recent bug reports:
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on June 14, 2017, 09:56:36 AM
I've been playing really badly recently, I'm too tired and keep dying early from loss of concentration so I'm rarely getting to the fourth level. :/

That's strange. I have had the same problem since I added the 4th level. I feel like I'm distracted thinking about surviving the Dungeon and it changes the way I play. I have to admit I win maybe 1 in 8 runs in the Dungeon.

Quote
I once had a thief try to jump me near a doorway and manage to jump outside the main play area box

Yeah, I know exactly how that might happen. Will have a fix in the next version.

Quote
When you kill the violet knights...does the death animation again.

I have seen that one too. Thought it was a glitch, but if it happened to you as well then there must be some permanent problem. Will investigate. Fixed.

Thanks.
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on June 15, 2017, 11:56:42 PM
Beat the Butcher with the archer for the first time today - done by plugging it with ice arrows repeatedly, which is never a very exciting way to do a boss battle but if it works it works I guess!

Also found the new hippo/rock breaking pet - the descr said it'd break three rocks per room but it only broke one in practice...
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on June 16, 2017, 11:12:24 AM
Also found the new hippo/rock breaking pet - the descr said it'd break three rocks per room but it only broke one in practice...

Whoops. It was 3 while testing, but it turned out to be OP, so I reduced it to one. Looks like I forgot to update the description. Thanks.

Although, after some playing, I see the problem that sometimes you cannot reach the item. I'll change it so that he jumps once, but breaks all the rocks he touches when he lands.
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on June 16, 2017, 12:25:25 PM
One didn't feel very powerful, I swapped him out for another pet before I changed level because it felt really quite underwhelming - I guess if it's "one stomp, breaks all the rocks it touches" that might be better.
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on June 21, 2017, 09:49:01 PM
The game has had a big influx of new players recently. One of the popular Twitch streamers played it live, so many people got the game. Some of them recorded live streams on Twitch and some on YouTube. I watched all of those and see that many players coming from simple brawler games often miss the subtle clues about weapons. They just run and gun and don't want to experiment, so they have a sub-par experience as they miss out on fun. On the other hand, as more levels are added the loading times are getting longer (esp. when you first start the game) so I'm planning to add some tips/hints to the loading screen. There will be about 30-40 of those, each showing some interesting mechanics or just explaining how stuff works. The game will pick one randomly for every "loading" screen. Here's an idea what it might look like:

(http://bigosaur.com/blog/images/tips1280.png)

What do you think? Is it clear or did I try to cram too much information in?

Any ideas how to make it even better?

Thanks.
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on June 21, 2017, 11:06:14 PM
I like the idea, and having it as a quote from the sage/mage guy I think is a great idea :) Mainly I'd make the text much bigger/bolder and the illustrations less so. Right now it feels very busy and my eyes would be all over the place: people need to see & read the text first and then look at the illustration.
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on June 22, 2017, 10:11:13 PM
I like the idea, and having it as a quote from the sage/mage guy I think is a great idea :) Mainly I'd make the text much bigger/bolder and the illustrations less so. Right now it feels very busy and my eyes would be all over the place: people need to see & read the text first and then look at the illustration.

Thanks.

Perhaps this screenshot isn't the most representative because there's text (weapon description, etc.) in the images. Other tips where images are pure images and the only text is below work much better. Also, everything looks huge here because it was made on 1280x720 screen. On regular 1920x1080 everything is much smaller.

I'll implement it like this and see how it feels in-game with different combinations of images and text.
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on June 23, 2017, 11:50:46 PM
Hm, sure. I'd still strongly consider making the text bigger, I think - you could give a very slight fade to the game image too, the aim should definitely be to draw the eye to the text first and then the illustration I think. See what the feedback from others is like though, this may just be me :)
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on June 25, 2017, 10:10:38 PM
Hm, sure. I'd still strongly consider making the text bigger, I think - you could give a very slight fade to the game image too, the aim should definitely be to draw the eye to the text first and then the illustration I think. See what the feedback from others is like though, this may just be me :)

I added a short animation. The text shows up first and pops a little bit (gets bigger for a split-second) and then the images slide in from the top of the screen. As far as I can feel it, the player would start to read the text before images show up.

I have a question. I want to use the following text for one of the tips: "Mages can use the quick attack button to stomp fallen enemies". Does it sound right? I have two doubts:

1. should it be "stomp enemies" or "stomp on enemies"? I prefer the shorter one because this text is already long.

2. Is the "fallen enemies" phrase always used for dead enemies? Should I remove the word "fallen"?

Thanks.
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on June 25, 2017, 11:58:27 PM
1. "stomp on enemies" is better grammar, but "stomp enemies" still makes perfect sense.

2. "fallen enemies" is fine and works well for this purpose I think.

EDIT: minor bug report, on the room with the rectangular pits on the battlements I just had a pig poop its coins into the void where I couldn't get them. Very frustrating :/
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on June 28, 2017, 10:10:18 AM
A new version is out (2.1.2) with the tips on loading screen and:

- added an option to automatically detect the aspect ratio and pick the best resolution for screens larger than 1920x1080
- added a screen resolution confirmation screen. If you get a blank screen due to invalid resolution you can now wait or press ESC to cancel the change instead of having to delete the settings file manually
- fixed a bug when a thief would sometimes be shown alive on the screen when he was dead in networked games
- buffed Poison and Snailbite arrows
- nerfed Ice arrows duration
- lowered mana cost for the Snake Staff
- added UTF8 support for text printing in preparation for future translations

P.S. as for the pet Pig bug, I will probably fix it, but the "fix" will be that coins fall down into the hole :)
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on June 28, 2017, 04:55:26 PM
Fair enough :)

A few more suggestions, not super important ones but just thoughts/things that might be nice to have:

Also just to confirm - it is definitely meant to be impossible to rob shops on the dungeon level, yes?
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on June 29, 2017, 09:00:36 AM
For daily challenges, I'd add significantly increased bonuses for completing a level/winning boss battles and completing the game as a whole. I feel like the aim should be to encourage people to get to the end, whereas currently there's a strong bias towards spending lots of time firing off extra bombs and working out what useless potions you can drink in order to get points and it's often just as worth trying to do more extra regular rooms even if you don't end up managing to do the boss battle or advance further as a result.

Perhaps going to next level should give you more than 1000 points. Now it's about 10% of the successful run points. Maybe something like 5000 would be better? Currently you don't get points for the last level, but that's just because the game isn't finished yet.

Quote
The video-game style "ping" for picking up coins really annoys me and I'd like a more metallic jingle or clink when you pick them up. This might just be me though.

I'll try some jingling sounds to see how it feels.

Quote
An NPC in the castle tavern room would be really nice to have, it just feels weirdly empty at the moment whereas having someone to say "welcome to the tavern" or similar might give it a nicer atmosphere for the player even if the NPC doesn't really have any function

I have some plans for it. One is to be able to recruit Bushido and the other is to have some NPC quest which starts there. Have yet to implement both.

Quote
Idea for a new scroll type, transformation - turns any bow, hand weapon, runestone, potion or staff into a randomised different item in the same category. So it could be great, or it could just turn something into something else even less useful.

Already on my list ;) I haven't made it yet because it's tricky - if a player picks it up in a networked game and another player tries to transform it at the same time, there could be a conflict, so I need to make some special procedure to make sure everyone has the game in sync. Similar to disallowing double-pickup of the item, but special case. That one took me days to debug and make work properly, so making this scroll (and a bunch of other ideas with similar problem) is on hold.

Quote
Also just to confirm - it is definitely meant to be impossible to rob shops on the dungeon level, yes?

Of course not. ;)

If you have a certain pet, which can grab stuff from pedestals... :)

Besides that, if you're really quick, you can grab the item at the same moment when spikes appear. And you can throw yourself onto spikes to pick up other items as well (as you fall and get up, there's a single frame where you can press the pickup button at the same moment when you get hit with the spike again). Of course, it's very risky and you need a lot of HP to even try.

Also, there will be a magic staff that allows you to fly over spikes and a pet that you can stand on similar to the mounts. Hmmm, maybe mounts should be resistant as well?[/list]
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on June 29, 2017, 04:28:07 PM
For some time I have been thinking to change the name of the game to "Son of a Witch". It would match the game story better and I noticed that it's awkward for some players to say the current name of the game out loud. It's also shorter and more memorable.

What do you think? Which name is better?

Thanks.
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on June 29, 2017, 07:53:06 PM
Yes that all sounds reasonable :)

Hmm. My Mom Is A Witch is a little long. On the other hand, "Son of a Witch" will be easily confused with/misheard for the phrase "son of a bitch" which might not be ideal either!
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on July 01, 2017, 07:09:08 PM
"Son of a Witch" will be easily confused with/misheard for the phrase "son of a bitch" which might not be ideal either!

I though having a well known similar phrase would make the game name easier to remember.

If it gets misheard, it could start a conversation about clearing up the confusion, which would make people remember it even better.

I got some good feedback on Twitter and Steam page, and nobody complaining yet, so I'm going to go with the change over the next couple of days. Probably squeezing in some game features/changes into the new version as well.
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on July 02, 2017, 01:01:42 AM
I guess so - I don't know exactly what market you're looking at, I was thinking it might put off eg parents buying it for their kids to have it sound a bit like a swear-phrase. Follow the feedback though :)
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on July 02, 2017, 09:10:23 AM
parents buying it for their kids

Yes, one of the main demographics is parents playing the game with their kids. I hope buying to play "with" instead of simply buying it for them to play would make them look past the title in this case. I guess they just have to be careful not to roll the other phrase off their tongue at some point ;)
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on July 02, 2017, 11:59:36 PM
Yeah, that's fair :)

Also, one continued bugbear of mine - would it be possible to let players use lower case as well as upper case letters in their player names? It aesthetically bugs me that I can't.
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on July 04, 2017, 06:54:15 AM
Also, one continued bugbear of mine - would it be possible to let players use lower case as well as upper case letters in their player names? It aesthetically bugs me that I can't.

Actually, the font that I use is upper-case only. The lower case letters are the same as the upper case ones, just a little bit smaller in size. Now, I could allow you to enter both, but it would mean having to extend the text-entry dialog to double it's current size. I'm not sure it would fit into the character selection frame. Or perhaps have a toggle button that shifts between upper/lower case while keeping the rest the same. Feels a little bit too much for a game though.

I'm not saying it won't be done at some point, but currently it's near the bottom of a huge TODO list. There's so many more important things like new stages, enemies, weapons, items, etc. for the full release.
 
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on July 05, 2017, 06:38:17 PM
I uploaded a new version with some minor bugfixes to multiplayer and one important change: all the food now gives much more HP. Some players complained that the Sorceress was useless, so I figured there are two options: 1) increase number of food dropped by the Straberry Staff and 2) all food should give you more HP. I went with number 2.

We shall see if this works out. I played only one full run to test, and it seemed like there's just too much food in levels 1-3, but on level 4 it was kind-of ok. I mean, there was more food than I needed because I stocked up on beer and health potions. Perhaps I should change my playing strategy: ignore health potions, beer, mushrooms and use the extra inventory space for other stuff instead.

If you play any games with the Sorceress I would love to read your thoughts on this.
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on July 07, 2017, 10:34:57 AM
I'll do my next few runs with the sorceress and let you know :)

EDIT: Of course having said that I just got my first sorceress killed super fast from mis-timing a shop robbery :/
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on July 07, 2017, 05:01:34 PM
I'll do my next few runs with the sorceress and let you know :)

EDIT: Of course having said that I just got my first sorceress killed super fast from mis-timing a shop robbery :/

I uploaded version 2.1.7 yesterday with some rebalancing. Food gives less HP than previous update but more than it did before. The Strawberry Staff now creates 5 pieces of food, giving you about 60 HP. The Sorceress is primarily meant to be a great support character if 2+ players are playing (healing both players and pets via food, 2 keys at start, understand scrolls). Offensively she starts out slow until you find a better weapon or upgrades.
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on July 08, 2017, 06:15:34 PM
Just had a decent run with the sorceress, died after getting poisoned in the dungeon but that's always a risk that's pretty hard to cover for. I was running with an upgraded teleporter as my primary weapon and just using the strawberry staff for food gen; it worked pretty well, but I didn't get any bounce or orb boosts which made it hard to deal with bigger rooms of enemies by the dungeon level.

I got this "dark orbs" thing in the dungeon which I think is new, I bought the upgrade for 300 coins but I wasn't really sure of the point, it didn't seem to do anything or make any difference as far as I could tell.
Title: Re: My Mom's a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on July 08, 2017, 10:51:47 PM
I got this "dark orbs" thing in the dungeon which I think is new, I bought the upgrade for 300 coins but I wasn't really sure of the point, it didn't seem to do anything or make any difference as far as I could tell.

Regular orbs only do damage while dark orbs also stun the enemy (just like melee attack does). If you only get one, it doesn't change the combat much, but if you get two or three, you can basically stun-lock enemies from the distance. It's also a good combination with the knockback potion.

We shall see, maybe I'll increase the drop chance, so there's a higher chance you would get 2-3 in one runs.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on July 09, 2017, 12:54:01 AM
Ahh right, OK. Yes, I think reading "stun" made me expect a bigger effect than just that little momentary knockback, I'd usually associate the word with meaning "knocked unconscious or barely conscious" so was looking for a larger effect than that very momentary pause. I'm not quite sure what else to call it...
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on July 09, 2017, 04:41:34 PM
Ahh right, OK. Yes, I think reading "stun" made me expect a bigger effect than just that little momentary knockback, I'd usually associate the word with meaning "knocked unconscious or barely conscious" so was looking for a larger effect than that very momentary pause. I'm not quite sure what else to call it...

I'm trying to use the standard computer beat'em up game terminology:


I guess in tabletop games, stun usually means that enemy loses his poise and is temporarily unconscious. I would imagine a bunch of stars flying circles around his head ;)

Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on July 09, 2017, 05:07:52 PM
Ahh, I didn't know that stun was "short freeze" in beat 'em up games, I was going by common English usage (which is also closer to what's used in tabletop gaming).
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on August 10, 2017, 06:20:48 PM
I'm working on the Catacombs. The boss fight with the Necromancer turned out to be too easy (gamble scroll, freezing, etc.) so I tried with two necromancers and it's great. However, this breaks the story. Tar of Akhal is "goblin" for "Staff of the Dead". It was supposed to be the necromancer staff, a rather unique item. Having two of those makes no sense, and having only one necromancer makes the fight trivial again.

So, I'm changing the story. The Necromancers will be reduced to a reason why Witch was invited into the castle and not play any other part in the story. The main enemy will be the Dragon Rider (one you can see when you complete the game). The Witch Mom will no longer be a playable character as I want the players to meet her in the catacombs to tell you more of the story and give you a reason to pursue the Dragon Rider for two more levels after the catacombs (Ice Mountain and The Desert). She will be locked away by the Dragon Rider who holds a special key to her cell / magic barrier / whatever she's locked in.

Also, having the Necromancers as part of the story means that they will probably always be present. So there will be a mini-boss fight before them that changes every time you play (planned bosses are: Skeleton King, Vampire Lord, Mega Zombie) and Necromancer Twins as the final fight.

So, removing the Witch makes me want to add another female playable character. I'm thinking something like a Female Knight. She would have similar starting skills to The Knight (100/70/30 + 5 hit shield). I'm looking for some cool ideas regarding her class name (Female Knight feels too generic) and maybe some special skill she should have?

She will have a special sword (different graphics that Knight's sword) which could have something special to it. If you have any ideas...shoot?

Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on August 10, 2017, 08:37:33 PM
If you go with a knight, you could have one who starts with a lower base stat (say 80 health and only 90% combat) but gets a mount of some sort from the beginning. That would add a significant uniqueness (and you could then use "Chevalier" or "Cataphract" or some such term for a specifically cavalry trooper).

Alternatively, go for a "Paladin" who gets 10hp auto-heal after every battle as a free ability (should be balanced I think, though quite nice if combo'd with the Giraffe). Or you could have a tank-style character "Champion" or "Defender" with a sword where each kill gives +1 to the shield ability. Or switch to a more damage-focussed character ("Varangian" or "Barbarian") who drops 10% off each of archery and magic and goes down to 80 health in favour of starting at 110% combat and using an axe.

I could probably stick with this all day but those are a few thoughts!



Other feedback from recent playthroughs:

Also I've started doing some skins themed around some of my actual academic work, I've got a second one coming soon: http://exilian.co.uk/forum/index.php?topic=5214.0

Hope all's well! I'm now based in Vienna, so I'll have to take a trip down into the Balkans sometime :)
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on August 11, 2017, 12:11:40 AM
If you go with a knight, you could have one who starts with a lower base stat (say 80 health and only 90% combat) but gets a mount of some sort from the beginning. That would add a significant uniqueness (and you could then use "Chevalier" or "Cataphract" or some such term for a specifically cavalry trooper).

Ah, that would be so cool. And I guess suitable for a female knight. I love the idea.

BTW, I have plans for more mounts, but bigger ones (horse, elephant, dragon). Those should be available in the last, 7th level, which will be designed with more open space to allow those big animals to move everywhere. Maybe 6th level as well, I haven't decided yet.

Quote
Alternatively, go for a "Paladin" who gets 10hp auto-heal after every battle as a free ability (should be balanced I think, though quite nice if combo'd with the Giraffe). Or you could have a tank-style character "Champion" or "Defender" with a sword where each kill gives +1 to the shield ability. Or switch to a more damage-focussed character ("Varangian" or "Barbarian") who drops 10% off each of archery and magic and goes down to 80 health in favour of starting at 110% combat and using an axe.

Barbarian is already in the character list. He will have faster rage buildup and possibly increased combat and decreased magic skill as you suggest. I also plan to have a couple of special combat animations unique to him, which will make his axe more deadly. He will be unlocked with a set of challenges (stuff like "Beat the game with all bosses coming in duos") you have to complete. However, for that we need to have all levels ready, so he isn't in yet.

I have some plans for Paladins in the future versions of the game, but I don't want to introduce it now.

"Champion" also looks like a good alternative as well. It means I wouldn't have to create a new mount at this point.

Quote
I still think that avarice should have a 10 or 12 time limit on it like tracker delusion does. The whole game just grinds into inventory management once it's been triggered, which is a pain.

Maybe the game should simply lock inventory and you cannot take anything? But that would prevent drinking a potion to remove it.

You can lure the thieves in the dungeon to steal stuff from you. But I guess it still means playing until dungeon.

Maybe I could enhance it with some positive effect. For example, you could have double coins for every coin pickup (and triple/quadruple/etc. if you drink more potions).

Quote
I also think that generosity feels a strange name for a potion that's 100% negative, as being generous usually has good connotations. I think I'd call it "extravagance" instead.

Fixed. Will be in the next version.

Quote
The warbreaker hammer getting the +mana ability with each kill makes it awesome, possibly too awesome when combo'd with the retort or the magical chest. It also feels an odd match of ability to name - having a "Wizard's Mace" or something with the mana ability feels like it'd make more sense.

Initially it was the only weapon that can break shields and stun bosses with a regular attack. "Wizard's Mace" feels too simple. Maybe something like "Enchanted Warbreaker" would be better?

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It currently feels a bit too hard to keep the boar alive into fourth level unless you're the chanter. This may of course be intentional, but thought you should know.

You can use the Life Staff to revive it at a cost of your own health.

Also, a new type of mount, Undead Boar, will sometimes be available in the Catacombs.

And big mounts are planned for the final, seventh level.

Quote
Would it be possible to make the level jumps from 2-3, 3-4, and 4-5 trapdoors, so you walk on it then trigger the trapdoor with W? Tiptoeing around the 2nd level exit trying to gather items blown out of the rocks whilst also trying not to fall in just feels a bit of a pain and I'm not sure it adds much to the game to have occasional times when you fall into the next level early by pure accident.

I'll check. That part of my code is rather complicated because it ties into level transition, so I cannot promise that I will be willing to touch it.

Quote
Will the ice dragon start appearing at any point?

No. There will be an Ice Mountain level, but with different bosses.

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I've seen it occasionally via gamble scrolls, but it never turns up in game, and it'd add a bit of variety, having to do the hornet queen too many times just gets a bit of a drag.

Every level will have 3 bosses, I just haven't got to it yet. The current plan is that 3rd boss on the battlements is "The Four Ninjas". So, actually 4 of them at once. Also, a Cyclops or Minotaur is planned for the first level, and Thief Mastermind and a Giant Slime are planned for the Dungeon (once you beat the Butcher).

Quote
Purely so you know, I've now switched back to my tactic of always doing the level 1 boss fight as soon as I find it - I can now beat the golem with basic weapons pretty reliably.

Yup. Although, I mostly play with Pyromancer and Golem's vunerable to fire, so it's easy.

Quote
Also I've started doing some skins themed around some of my actual academic work, I've got a second one coming soon: http://exilian.co.uk/forum/index.php?topic=5214.0

Oh, I completely missed that. There was the whole "site transition" thing and I went to Greece for a couple of weeks, so I didn't come to the website for some time.

It looks awesome!

Quote
Hope all's well! I'm now based in Vienna, so I'll have to take a trip down into the Balkans sometime :)

Actually, it's only a 4.5 hour drive from my city (Subotica) to Vienna, because it's at the very north of my country. I guess I might come visit you some time. My wife and I always wanted to go to Vienna for a weekend but never got a real reason for it. ;)

Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on August 11, 2017, 12:14:13 AM
BTW, I just got the Necromancer staff logic working. Once you get the necromancer's staff, you can raise your own undead army (costs mana, of course):

(http://bigosaur.com/blog/images/witch-0164-undead-army-ezgif.gif)

This is different than the Royal Scepter because the undead stay on screen when they die, so you can raise them again, but you cannot summon new ones. I plan to allow raising of undead archers and mages as well. We shall see how that pans out.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on August 11, 2017, 10:35:59 PM
Necromancer stuff looks good! :)

Further thoughts on your points from the long post, in order:

And yes, for the next few weeks I'll still be learning my way around and doing lots of paperwork, but definitely come and visit Vienna sometime, I'm here for the next few years and in a month or so I'll hopefully know a lot more good places to visit and things!
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on August 13, 2017, 12:39:11 AM
Son of a Witch is actually really quite a hard game to play a tank in as
the damage values are quite high.

You're right. I'll try increasing the starting shield bonus for the Knight, maybe to 10 or 20 hits - until the difficulty seems similar to archer/mages.

Quote
Interesting that you usually play pyromancer - I relatively rarely use it, as it's so hard to "safely" test potions early on (too high a chance of ending up with super-low max health). I try and vary character type so I can test all the fighting styles properly. :)

It fits my play-style. Fire does great damage to everyone except the Red Dragon and it's easy to upgrade with kindlings. I usually carry another staff to shoot when I don't have mana to activate the fireballs. And I rarely get hit on early levels (once I kept drinking potions to increase speed and magic and mostly played the first two levels with 1 HP). Unless I'm really unlucky to get both bad potions early AND no red runestones/Iron Flesh potion in the first 2 levels.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on August 13, 2017, 04:08:09 PM
I actually find the knight OK at the moment as a start character - I was just commenting on the fact that 99% of the time you're better off dodging than absorbing hits in this game, which isn't a problem it's just a feature of the system. :)

And yeah, I think archer probably tends to be my favoured character type but only slightly. Chanter is very good indeed as well.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on August 17, 2017, 01:22:42 AM
I need some help!

I'm trying to wrap up the story, so I can develop the game further. There are some important decisions to make which will steer the game development towards the end and I need to decide which story the game should have, so I can make weapons, NPCs, cut-scenes between levels, etc.

Anyway, I have thought about this a lot, and I have narrowed it down to two choices. I'd love to read your opinion on both of those:

STORY VARIANT 1:



STORY VARIANT 2:


BTW, if you have any completely different ideas or radical modifications to those above, please tell me. Especially if it includes going from catacombs into ice level without a portal. I really need some brainstorming here  :gandalfgrey:
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on August 17, 2017, 09:52:46 PM
Variant 2 I think I like a bit better - if the Tar was simply a necro-staff, why were the goblins keeping it in the first place? I mean sure, undead are tough, but the goblins are already happy to rain meteors down from the heavens on people, so in this world a necromantic staff doesn't seem like it's massively out of the ordinary. I feel like the Tar should be a "raise the stakes" item that the goblins (or anyone else in their right mind) should be extremely scared to use.

Here's a story variant 3, quite close to V2 but might explain the necro/dragon rider connection better:

Might that solve some of the issues?
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on August 18, 2017, 03:46:32 PM
The Dragon rider stole the artefact along with the necromancer (both are more or less native to the kingdom in this version, and both intending to ultimately be the sole user and betray the other)

I guess this could work. I would change a story a little bit, so that they hire a thief to steal it for them. I would have 2 cut-scenes in the game:

1. Thief sneaking into the goblin camp and stealing the Tar
2. Thief giving the tar to the Dragon Rider while Necromancer is also present

This would show what's going on, without having to have some NPC explain it.

I could also have a cut-scene where the Dragon Rider tells the Necromancer to start raising the dead, so nobody enters the catacombs. Although, it would be hard to pull that off without dialogue (which I'm trying to avoid).

Quote
Once you defeat the Necromancer, you get a short sequence where the Dragon Rider escapes with the Tar using a super powerful teleport scroll/system

I find that a little bit problematic. I think I will go back to the portal idea and have the Dragon Rider escape through the portal which remains open long enough for you to follow him.

I'm also thinking to use portals to explain presence of dragons (and perhaps other future enemies which seem out of place). I could show a couple of cut-scenes where the Dragon Rider creates the portals and the dragon and other monsters come out.

Quote
Having rescued your mom...she can also explain the real use of the Tar & why you need to follow the dragon rider

Good idea. Although, I would like to keep her locked or something. Otherwise, it would make sense for her to join the party and follow you. I tried to make a good mage AI for that, but haven't been very successful with that. So, a story where she doesn't come along would be better.

Quote
At the end, you can return the Tar to the goblin shamans who will take it back to a secret goblin location for safekeeping, and you get to go home to your village.

Yes, that could be the final cut-scene when you win the game.

Thanks.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on August 21, 2017, 08:14:24 PM
Sorry for sparse information lately. I have been working hard on some new things for the next update:

Stuff to do before the next release:


I'm still not sure what quest to use to unlock the Skeleton Archer character. I thought to maybe make him show up in the catacombs as an NPC and tell you that a long time ago (while he was alive) he was a friend with a powerful wizard who cast a spell protecting him from any form of mind control. So when the necromancer raised him from the dead, he didn't turn into his servant like the other undead did. But, the Necromancers have some magic item that restricts all the undead into the catacombs. He needs you to find that item, destroy it and set him free. Accepting his quest would open a passage into a secret part of the catacombs that has super-hard rooms full with traps and enemies.

What do you think? Maybe some variation on this story or some completely different idea for the quest?
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on August 22, 2017, 10:56:32 PM
That sounds a good one :) And another forest minigame would be great! Less sure about whether the new avarice variant will be balanced - doubling your current gold could be a pretty OP one-shot ability in some games if you have the retort and can make a few plus a dragonfire potion to use it with. If it doubles every time and you got 4 potions, you could go from say 1000 gold (achievable by sometime in level 3) to 16000 by which point money is no object. Certainly you may want to make the extra money not count for extra in points, or it'll become broken for the daily challenges.

One request though wrt the "subplot quests" - have the characters reappear at some point! It feels weird that you only get to play the quest until you complete it and never find that subplot again. Like the woman you have to transport to the castle could sometimes optionally turn up in the castle tavern if that appears or something?
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on August 23, 2017, 09:25:09 PM
Certainly you may want to make the extra money not count for extra in points, or it'll become broken for the daily challenges.

Yes. Already done. I have also capped the gold at 999999 because I managed to blast past that during testing ;)

Quote
One request though wrt the "subplot quests" - have the characters reappear at some point! It feels weird that you only get to play the quest until you complete it and never find that subplot again. Like the woman you have to transport to the castle could sometimes optionally turn up in the castle tavern if that appears or something?

I actually planned for her to show up again at some later stage (locked in a dungeon or something like that) and you have to escort her again. But this time it doesn't unlock a character. She gives you some reward instead. I completely forgot about this, thanks for reminding me.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on August 23, 2017, 10:31:12 PM
No prob :) There's also the forest archer and the woman who gives you the duck, though I'm not sure how they could come back necessarily... but yeah, having a couple of regularly cropping up sidequests might be a good thing.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on August 24, 2017, 02:54:59 PM
the woman who gives you the duck

She's also the vendor in the pet shop :)

Archer has a fetch quest (fetch 100 arrows) which I think would be boring if you had to do again? I mean, I could make another "fetch X pieces of Y" but I'm not sure players would want to see that often.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on August 24, 2017, 11:56:44 PM
Hm, maybe, not sure.

Also, bug report: I just robbed a scroll shop with petrify arrows in a daily challenge but the prices didn't disappear.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on August 25, 2017, 01:22:06 PM
Also, bug report: I just robbed a scroll shop with petrify arrows in a daily challenge but the prices didn't disappear.

Thanks. I fixed it. It will be in the next version. BTW, while testing that fix, I also found another bug: you can use replicate scroll on arrows to create stacks instead of single arrow (ex. using it on a singe Petrify Arrow creates a new stack of 3 arrows). I fixed this one as well.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on August 25, 2017, 04:35:57 PM
Good stuff :)
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on September 01, 2017, 03:02:06 PM
The Catacombs are ready, including a playable Skeleton Archer character, a bunch of new items, weapons, special rooms, etc. I did a lot of changes to the game to allow playing with undead, so I will need to test it for a while before releasing to make sure there are no serious bugs.

If you want to try the newest version, I have uploaded it to steam into Beta mode. To switch to the beta version, right-click the game name in your Steam library and select Properties option from the menu:

(http://bigosaur.com/blog/images/optin1.png)

Then click the BETAS tab at the top of the Properties window. Select the "testing - Unstable" option from the dropdown menu:

(http://bigosaur.com/blog/images/optin2.png)

Enter the password: minimum89012

(http://bigosaur.com/blog/images/optin3.png)

Steam would then download the files that are different and let you run the beta. If you plan to play online multiplayer - both players have to have the beta version (there will be some periods in-between releases where beta version could co-op with stable version, but this is not guaranteed).

If you decide to go back from beta to stable just open the Properties again and select "opt out" from the dropdown menu in the BETAS tab.

(http://bigosaur.com/blog/images/optout.png)

In this version, the Skeleton Archer is fully playable, without needed to unlock him (for easier testing). I plan to run this testing version for a week or two before the official release. In the meantime, I'll probably make the quest as well and then the Skeleton Archer will be locked until you complete it.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on September 01, 2017, 09:18:30 PM
Great, thanks :) Not sure how much time I'll have in the next week but I'll try and give it a test drive if I get a chance!

I put SoaW in Updates again: http://exilian.co.uk/forum/index.php?topic=5312
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Glaurung on September 03, 2017, 10:43:22 PM
Moderator action: the discussion in this thread about the Updates e-mail not getting through etc. has been split off to a new thread (http://exilian.co.uk/forum/index.php?topic=5317.0), to try to avoid muddling topics. Please feel free to continue to contribute to this thread or the other one, as appropriate to the subject.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on September 10, 2017, 10:15:31 AM
The Beta version has been updated. New version is 2.2.6 and contains:

- added quest (with a special maze in the catacombs) to unlock the skeleton archer
- added the Skeleton King boss
- added blue sorceress skin and achievement to unlock it
- added a Squirrel pet
- balanced the music volume for all the songs to make it consistent across levels
- fixed stomp hitboxes for some units
- improved Vampiress strike animation (second part only plays out after successful hit)
- skeleton archer hero has a different color for health bar and his own set of sound effects
- fixed a bug with missing animation for stomped spiders in the garden
- fixed display height for status icons for enemies
- fixed Amanda's pathfinding code on the final screen of Pyromancer quest
- displaying status icons in multiple rows when playing co-op
- if you have dark orbs and exploding orbs upgrades, the orbs explode into smaller dark orbs now
- improved engine performance when there are many objects on the screen
- increased runestone drop rate for rocks on levels 4 and 5 (because there aren't many rocks)
- various minor bugfixes

I plan to test this for a couple of days, esp. online multiplayer and then, if there are no bugs, turn it into the official "Catacombs update" release.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on September 10, 2017, 07:33:50 PM
OK, finally got some testing done.

The new stuff works well, the catacomb levels etc seem good to me, and I think the necromancer twins feel like the right level of toughness. The skeleton archer quest levels I'm less sure about; I think the number of wizards/curses is often too high, such that unless you're a wizard of some sort that deals damage exceptionally quickly, by the end of one room you probably already have so many curses that any other tactic is very hard to use, especially because all your mana-using items quickly end up useless because they use the distraction curse so often. I'm not sure what to suggest with this. I'd consider giving the undead wizards a more restricted range of curses possibly, so the player has some vague idea what to prepare for and feels a bit more in control. I'd also exclude distraction & extravagance from their curses, unless you're planning to time limit or add more things that can "cure" them. The trouble with any curses like those that require dragonfire potions to remove is that you then have to sacrifice all your status effects, which for some characters (depending on what potions the game has) can feel like you're undoing the whole game's work. (They also seem to "curse" you with fire immunity occasionally which is a bit weird, or at least I'm pretty sure I saw the fire-immune symbol appear above my head at one point?)
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on September 11, 2017, 09:35:27 AM
The skeleton archer quest levels I'm less sure about; I think the number of wizards/curses is often too high, such that unless you're a wizard of some sort that deals damage exceptionally quickly, by the end of one room you probably already have so many curses that any other tactic is very hard to use, especially because all your mana-using items quickly end up useless because they use the distraction curse so often. I'm not sure what to suggest with this. I'd consider giving the undead wizards a more restricted range of curses possibly, so the player has some vague idea what to prepare for and feels a bit more in control. I'd also exclude distraction & extravagance from their curses, unless you're planning to time limit or add more things that can "cure" them. The trouble with any curses like those that require dragonfire potions to remove is that you then have to sacrifice all your status effects, which for some characters (depending on what potions the game has) can feel like you're undoing the whole game's work.

This quest is meant to be really hard, perhaps the hardest in the game. I have maybe a 20% win ratio so far.

In one of the runs with a Knight I got a mana canteen at the start and one of the potions was Barbarian's friend. I found a retort in the castle and created a bunch of potions (since I didn't use mana at all up to that point). I got about 360% melee by the time I got to the catacombs, and a bunch of dragonfire potions as well. With a decent sword, I would do about 50 damage per hit.

A mage with some orb upgrades and magic skill upgrades can do the quest without too much trouble. Challenging but doable.

Another feasible way is to defeat the necromancers, take the Staff of the Dead and then kill the vampiress shop vendors and raise them. Add a couple of skeletons and you have your own undead army. I played this type of run a couple of times. Once you defeat 2-3 rooms it gets easier as you can raise more vampiresses to help you.

There was one run where I got a book of life on the altar of nature, so with +100 health bonus the tomb quest became doable even with average damage.

In any case, I want this to be a real challenge, not something you can done every time. Since it's optional, the players can skip it if they didn't get enough upgrades / items to prepare for it, go past the necromancers to complete the main game and do the quest another time. I'm thinking that tomb might show up as an optional area sometimes even if you have already unlocked the archer.

Quote
(They also seem to "curse" you with fire immunity occasionally which is a bit weird, or at least I'm pretty sure I saw the fire-immune symbol appear above my head at one point?)

The overhead icons only show the spells that were cast. If you are immune, they don't affect you. Perhaps I should change this to show some symbol (red X maybe?) if the spell failed. Or simply not show the icon at all.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on September 11, 2017, 10:55:47 PM
It's not so much the difficulty, just the balance of tactics available, which gets super restricted by the lack of mana abilities. The distraction curse is the only one that I particularly think is an issue - it's not what it does to the difficulty, I just suspect that eg an amulet to stop distraction or a bit more possibility of protection/cure from it would help make the player feel more in control/able to strategise than I did. The issue was not feeling like I can do anything other than run a lot and hope for the best, I guess. I've found things like your suggestion of building an undead army (which is much more my sort of approach) really difficult because I usually find I run out of mana far too fast (I managed it once I had a run with the mana canteen admittedly). But anyway, you probably have a better idea of it than I do, those are just my feelings after a few playthroughs :)

A couple of minor bugs to report:
1. I hit the undead pig with an orb from the healing staff and it didn't let me ride it afterwards.
2. I took the skeleton archer (NPC version) in to fight the necro-twins, they "killed" him and then raised him on their team. This doesn't make any sense given that his whole backstory is "that one undead guy who's immune to their mind control".

EDIT: Finally unlocked the skele archer character. Not played much yet, but immediate issue - not sure why, but he seems to have an automatic left-facing, so it's really hard if not impossible to get him to shoot right. No idea why.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on September 13, 2017, 08:12:21 AM
A couple of minor bugs to report:
1. I hit the undead pig with an orb from the healing staff and it didn't let me ride it afterwards.
3. not sure why, but he seems to have an automatic left-facing, so it's really hard if not impossible to get him to shoot right. No idea why.

Yes, I noticed those as well, and fixed in version 2.3.4. which I uploaded later yesterday. If it still happens with 2.3.4, let me know.

2. I took the skeleton archer (NPC version) in to fight the necro-twins, they "killed" him and then raised him on their team. This doesn't make any sense given that his whole backstory is "that one undead guy who's immune to their mind control".

Whoops! You're right. I completely forgot about that possibility. I need to fix that.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on September 13, 2017, 10:07:05 PM
OK, did my first proper run with the now-functional skeleton - completed it right through to the necro twins on the first go which I was pleased about, though then attempted deep catacombs and got smushed pretty quickly.

Some notes & thoughts:
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on September 14, 2017, 12:15:41 PM
The main reason I managed the whole thing as the skele was that I got the giraffe pet early. As the main big disadvantage of the skeleton seems to be physical fragility, without many ways at all to restore health, the giraffe is an excellent pet to combo with that character.

Yes. There are four ways to heal: Giraffe, Vampire Sword, Healer Staff, Life Staff. Well, you can also get a Book of Life from the nature altar, but that's rare.

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Sunset scrolls are now massive no-brainers most of the time in how you use them, except on the final level; I just always fire them all off at the end of a level before moving to the next one, so I get all the benefit without ever having to fight in the dark.

Yes. I noticed that I'm doing the same. Not sure if this is bad or there is something I should really change.

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Is it now intentional that hidden forest-level rooms can have skeletons in?

Yes.

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Will they always do so?

I'm not sure. The plan was that they would be full with undead from the very start. There were goblins initially because I hadn't created the undead enemies yet. But now I feel like the room doesn't feel right. You can get hit by a Skeleton Warrior and get muscle spasms without seeing that before and bats are very hard to fight when they can hide behind the trees.

I'm thinking maybe it should be goblins-only, at least until you defeat the necromancers, and maybe 50-50% goblins/undead later. Or maybe just make it goblins-only like before. I somehow felt those rooms were more fun to fight than the current ones.

What do you think?

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Unless I'm very much mistaken, you seem to be able to get items from the dead pile when you start the castle level by turning them all into barrels. Are you meant to be able to do that?

No. It's a bug. I will fix it.

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What is it that actually triggers the bone arrow drops? Is it just being the skeleton archer, or is it actually holding/using the bow?

They drop if one of the player characters is the skeleton archer. At first I wanted it to be a feature of the bow, but as we played co-op games it turned into "don't kill enemies, I need arrows to power up" which made it less enjoyable for other players.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on September 14, 2017, 04:01:49 PM
OK, fair enough :) Are the catacomb levels officially released now?
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on September 15, 2017, 08:10:26 AM
OK, fair enough :) Are the catacomb levels officially released now?

Yes. The testing and official version are currently the same. Here's the official announcement:

(http://bigosaur.com/blog/images/witch-0167-catacombs.png)

A new version is available with a lot of new content:

Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on September 16, 2017, 11:03:37 PM
Excellent, added to frontpage :)

One thought - could you make a separate thread/post in this forum where the top post just has all the general information about Son of a Witch (links to twitter, steam page, etc)? When I do announcements and stuff I'm often finding that I'm trying to put in several links and it would be good to have a main information post to point people at rather than some place halfway through the dev thread.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on September 20, 2017, 08:52:58 PM
Bug reports:

- You're missing an article in the mom's final dialogue, it should be "to the goblins"
- I let off a poison cloud scroll at the end of the castle, then jumped in, and when I got to the dungeon after the cutscene I had no health. My guess is that the poison cloud was continuing to kill my character during the cutscene, which probably should be fixed.

I like the new cutscenes though :)
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on September 21, 2017, 08:20:15 AM
- You're missing an article in the mom's final dialogue, it should be "to the goblins"

Fixed. Will be in the next update.

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- I let off a poison cloud scroll at the end of the castle, then jumped in, and when I got to the dungeon after the cutscene I had no health. My guess is that the poison cloud was continuing to kill my character during the cutscene, which probably should be fixed.

Yes. The problem is that you are still "in the hole" during the cut-scene and in networked games there's no "pause". I will have to find some way to fix this. Perhaps "if player is in the hole ignore poison effects". I guess I should do the same for hunger as well.

Quote
I like the new cutscenes though :)

Thanks.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on September 21, 2017, 10:18:50 AM
Quote
if player is in the hole ignore poison effects
Yes, this would seem the obvious solution I guess.

I had a great final boss fight on the recent daily challenge too - used gamble scrolls on the twins and ended up fighting an ice dragon which was fighting an executioner with a few goblins running round, which worked fairly well for me :D (I also used a gamble to rob the catacombs shop, so every one of the vampire bats turned into goblins which was fun)
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on September 28, 2017, 07:36:01 PM
I finally made a website for the game. It's here:

https://sonofawitchgame.com/ (https://sonofawitchgame.com/)

Please tell me how you like it and let me know I have some typos or bad grammar ;)
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on October 06, 2017, 02:45:37 PM
Sorry about the disappearing posts, hacking attack :/

Anyway, regarding the website (which looks good!) a few grammar points:

Hope that helps :)

Recent updates are good, I like the new dungeon boss, I think he's a bit less difficult than the butcher in general but fun nonetheless. The cyclopes are good too, I've faced/beaten them once. The long jump is nice, but I didn't feel like I'd gone very far at all from the look of the jump on-screen despite getting both items, which felt a bit strange.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on October 06, 2017, 02:52:04 PM
Hope that helps :)

Awesome! Thanks.

Quote
The long jump is nice, but I didn't feel like I'd gone very far at all from the look of the jump on-screen despite getting both items, which felt a bit strange.

Well, you can't jump much further without more speed and I really wanted the player to behave exactly the same as usually. I also wanted the players to always be able to get both items.

I did add a Steam achievement for jumps longer than 200. To get it you would need some speed upgrades like the blur potion, rabbit pet, rabbit amulet, etc.I tested a bit - a player could jump really far with a couple of blur potions (esp. if you get a couple of duplicate scrolls to make some more). So the length of the landing area is still reasonable for that.

Here's my previous post:

(https://bigosaur.com/blog/images/witch-0170-cyclops600.png)

Meet Ugh and Ogh, the cyclops. These brothers are a new boss in the forest. Cyclops is the weakest of all bosses, so there are two of them to make the fight fun.

Since the catacombs update I focused on adding new content to existing levels and bugfixing any problems. I also added 10 new achievements to make the game interesting for players who completed all the levels.

Another new boss is the Ringleader. He sometimes shows up in the dungeon instead of the Simerian Butcher. The Ringleader can jump on you similar to the way the thief does - except that he is faster and has greater reach. If he finds any bombs on you, he would use them immediately. He also steals and throws your other items around.

(https://bigosaur.com/blog/images/witch-0169-jump.png)

I also added a new themed area in the forest - a long jump competition. You get some items as rewards for jumping certain distances. To jump even further, you can find some speed buffs like The Rabbit Amulet, Blur Potion, etc. There's also a Steam achievement if you manage to jump really far.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on October 06, 2017, 02:57:25 PM
I'd consider making the second item require more speed so you don't always get both? Or add a third item/coin reward for really long jumps. It just feels a bit odd that once you get the achievement, 80% of the long jump space doesn't really have any use.

Also, which cyclops is Ugh and which is Ogh? ;)
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on October 06, 2017, 03:46:08 PM
I'd consider making the second item require more speed so you don't always get both?

I feel like players would complain then because it all depends on the random generator and not your skill.

Quote
Also, which cyclops is Ugh and which is Ogh? ;)

Aha, that's a tricky one  ;D

Ogh is the one with the green clothes :)
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on October 07, 2017, 12:41:37 AM
Yeah, it's difficult. I guess you may be right and it's the best balance, it just still feels short on-screen.

Good to know. Ogh is now my favourite cyclops :D
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on November 03, 2017, 08:57:37 PM
I'm working on the ice level. I added a couple of enemies and am now working on a boss. I want the first boss to be a mad Santa Claus throwing exploding presents at the players.

I'm not sure whether to name him "Crazy Santa" or "Mad Santa". Which one is better?

Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on November 04, 2017, 11:24:08 PM
Crazy over mad I guess... though I'd rather give a more different name/version, I can't help feeling that Santa will be great as a Christmas thing but then feel kind of odd the rest of the year.

Also, some balance thoughts from recent playtests:
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on November 05, 2017, 12:04:04 PM
Crazy over mad I guess... though I'd rather give a more different name/version, I can't help feeling that Santa will be great as a Christmas thing but then feel kind of odd the rest of the year.

Well, it's a snow/ice level. It should work.

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The healing staff is, I think, overpowered at the moment. 8 damage + poison removal and heal, given how dangerous poison is, makes it a no-brainer as my main attack staff any time there's a shop I can rob one from on 1st or 2nd level (which is a fair chunk of the time). It's frustrating because I like using the others, like shepherd and turret especially, a lot, but at the moment, in most games the healing staff is just always the better option. I'd drop it to 6 or even 5 damage, so people will still cart it around as a curing tool but it's not automatically the best fighting-power option around if you find one on first level.

Agreed. Will do it for the next version.

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Why is the lightning from the staff so weak compared to the lightning from the sword?

Compared to other staves, lightning staff is similar. I find it especially OP with some bosses because lightning can do a lot of damage. Perhaps the sword is OP compared to other weapons - however, when it was weaker it felt weak and I would rarely use it (although it's mean to be one of the best swords). For example, if you got a VioleNt sword there would be no reason to use the Lightning sword. Since I upped the damage, it's usable again. Note that lightning is rage based, has short range and no dash attack, so it's really not that great - thus very high lightning damage to compensate. Compare it with the Rogue Sword for example, which can also deal 300-400 damage with rage attack but also allows you to sneak out of tough situations.

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This doesn't make a huge deal of sense to me, especially considering how high-mana the lightning staff's ability actually is.

Well, I guess I could lower the mana cost. Actually I'm thinking to do the same for Fireball staff as well - to make it more fun.

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Is there any way at all for the skeleton archer character to get rid of curse effects like distraction and avarice, given that they can't drink dragon fire potions?

Currently, no. I planned to have some items or altars that remove all negative status effects but still haven't decided what exactly it would be.

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I've not had this come up, but what happens if you try long-jumping while riding a boar?

This can never happen, because those two rooms (boars and long-jump) are mutually exclusive, i.e. they can never get created in the same game. However, if you would be able to create it (via cheat codes) the boar would simply run through the spikes while you're jumping above. And if you tried to walk onto spikes while mounted, you would fall off the boar.

Quote
Are you meant to be able to resurrect Undead King Salamis and have him follow you around?

Yes. Vampire Lord too. It is a bit OP and I will probably reduce the drop rate for Staff of the Dead, so necromancer drops it rarely and those runs when you do get them feel special.

Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on November 05, 2017, 01:57:28 PM
Hmm, I guess. I suppose I associate the modern style red-clad "Santa" with quite a modern/American version of Christmas (the older English "Father Christmas" is still more normally the one referred to in my family), so for me personally I find it jars oddly with fantasy settings. That's just me, though - I think you're right, it will probably work fine for most players (and I can always reskin him for myself at least if I want to...!) :)

I think fireball staff is balanced atm - dropping the mana cost on the lightning staff would make that a better choice though, certainly.

I like the idea of altars that remove some status effects, that would definitely be a good addition!

Btw, I'm compiling a three-part guide to the game in the rest of this subforum, so if you ever get a chance to check I haven't said anything stupid in those threads please do take a look :)
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on November 05, 2017, 02:19:30 PM
Btw, I'm compiling a three-part guide to the game in the rest of this subforum, so if you ever get a chance to check I haven't said anything stupid in those threads please do take a look :)

Oh. I don't know how I missed that. Going to read it now.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on November 05, 2017, 02:29:18 PM
Btw, I'm compiling a three-part guide to the game in the rest of this subforum, so if you ever get a chance to check I haven't said anything stupid in those threads please do take a look :)

I few things you can add:

Goblin Bomber can occasionally drop a bomb right next to him if you're sticking too close to him for a longer period.

The "official" goblin unit names are: Goblin Defender (sword+shield), Goblin Berserker (axe), Goblin Warrior (club), Goblin Shaman, Goblin Blaggard (bombs). I'm not sure if Blaggard is a good name, what do you think about it?

The "official" dungeon unit names are: Thug (mace), Thief (twisted knife), Brigand (shielder). I'm not sure these are the best? Maybe I should switch to the names you used.

A good weapon to take down Orcs are the bombs or melee weapons with knockdown ability (Warbreaker, Earthquake Staff, Twisted Knife). The same weapons are also useful against shielded enemies (Goblin Defender, Guard Captain and Brigand).

The get the thief off your back you can try to get hit deliberately (buy an enemy or a trap) or use a dashing rage attack with a melee weapon. With some precise positioning, you can get the floor spike trap to only hit the thief. In co-op games, the other player can hit the thief. Thieves are very useful if you have the Avarice curse. You can use them to get rid of unneeded weapons and items.

Skeleton Sword has a "tetanus infecion" attack that manifests in poison+muscle spasm effect. Hiccups also result in muscle spasms.

Skeleton Archers have no negative effect, except really high arrow damage that can often one-shot the player.

Vampire is actually a Vampiress. They don't have any boosts. They have a two-stage attack (hit + uppercut) which triggers if the initial attack succeeds.

One of the simple ways to kill a Bushido is to use the Meteor Staff + Voodoo doll. Drop a meteor on the shop keeper. As soon as Bushido comes out, mark him with the doll and drop it. Then just keep dropping meteors on the doll until he's done.

Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on November 05, 2017, 02:57:15 PM
Thankyou! :) Will add those notes on thieves etc (and of course some of the other guide parts are very much incomplete so far, as you'll notice).

That's interesting tactically, personally I almost never use knockdown weapons on the orc etc unless I have the horse so I can reliably kill them on stomp - I just find they catch me unawares too often when they get up slightly faster than I expected.

I am very much in favour of "Goblin Blaggard", that's an excellent name for them :) I'll change the others to their official names later (I wonder if "soldier" might be better than "defender" though, given they're mostly trying to attack things throughout the game!).

In terms of dungeon unit names, I think my idea of Bandit maybe works better than Thug (I feel like thug implies they're stupid, whereas these guys are quite smart given they flank you, run shops, etc), but your name of Brigand for the shielders is probably better than my suggestion of Assassin (because assassins with shields/defense capacity is a weird idea).
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on November 05, 2017, 03:08:33 PM
I wonder if "soldier" might be better than "defender" though, given they're mostly trying to attack things throughout the game!

I used "defender" because of the shield. But maybe this isn't a good connection?

Quote
In terms of dungeon unit names, I think my idea of Bandit maybe works better than Thug

Ok. Updated.

I have finished reading the unit part and added some more comments to my previous post (see above).

I'm going to read the boss guide now and make a new post for that.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on November 05, 2017, 03:22:54 PM
Defender does make some logical sense - I guess I'd associate "defender" with defending something else/external, though, beyond just shielding themselves, which is why I'm a bit less sure about it?

Thankyou! For the equipment & general gameplay guides, it's probably not worth looking through them yet - the monster manual is by far the most complete of the three.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on November 05, 2017, 03:25:45 PM
Golem hand slam does 60 damage if the hand hits you.

Cyclops do 60 damage for the club attack (you probably got 30 if you were playing with a knight and had 50% damage reduction due to the shield). The hand-slap does 30.

For boss enemies who are regular humans (Violent Knights, Crystal Wizard, Necromancer, Ringleader) there's a good melee tactics: just stay close to them spam the light-attack to keep them stunned. I have actually designed these bosses to be easier for a melee character to offset the fact that most other bosses are much easier for a ranged character to fight.




Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on November 05, 2017, 03:28:49 PM
Defender does make some logical sense - I guess I'd associate "defender" with defending something else/external, though, beyond just shielding themselves, which is why I'm a bit less sure about it?

Understand. Not sure about "soldier" though. I feel like "soldier" would be a profession for someone who made that choice in life and doesn't feel like something goblins would have as they are warrior race and they all fight? Or maybe it just doesn't translate well from English to Serbian so I got a wrong impression?
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on November 05, 2017, 04:02:30 PM
That's a good point, yes, soldier usually does imply professional/regimented or at least specifically trained/kitted out - a conscript is still a soldier despite not having it as their profession, for example.

I guess "Goblin Swordsman" would be another option, or you could rename the goblin warrior to "Goblin Thug" or "Goblin Grunt" (both of which would I think imply low skill), and then rename the defender to warrior?
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on November 05, 2017, 04:03:11 PM
Swords don't all have the dashing rage attack. Most of them do, but not all: The Rogue Sword makes you disguise as a barrel and then sneak-attack for 100+ damage per hit. The Thunderstriker shoots lightning instead of the dash attack.

I have changed the Firestarter for the next version to have 100% burn chance, i.e. enemies are always set on fire.

You probably know this, but a couple of weapons are missing: The Fake Excalibur, War Axe, Dual Bloodblade (Vampiress weapon), Twiligth staff, Demonic staff and Staff of the Dead (raising undead).

The weapons with backstab bonus are usable in single-player games against the big bosses who don't turn after they start attacking (Ogre Mama, Golem, Executioner, Dragons, Butcher, etc.) and also when you freeze enemies and then attack from behind.

The War Sheep boss can easily be defeated with a Meteor staff, Stormbringer or a simple voodoo doll. Since the sheep does not move, make sure you use the Shepherd staff when the boss is near the spawning "hut" so the spikes hit it instead of covering the whole screen. Then stand below the hut and just attack from range or via voodoo doll. The hard part is only getting the boss to stand in a position that's good for turning him into a war sheep.

Medusa arrows are useful against Bushidos.

A typo, this should probably be "rage" up instead of "range up":

Quote
The ranged secondary on throwing weapons generally doesn't build range up

Going to read the potion section now...
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on November 05, 2017, 04:04:28 PM
You could rename the goblin warrior to "Goblin Thug" or "Goblin Grunt" (both of which would I think imply low skill), and then rename the defender to warrior?

Awesome. I like the Grunt + Warrior idea. Will change it now.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on November 05, 2017, 04:19:47 PM
I had the others noted down, but I'd forgotten the bloodblade, thanks for the heads up (and thankyou for the info on the war sheep, I'll add that to the monster manual!)

Also, I decided to make another little extra skinpack, which isn't very good but it's a useful excuse to practice doing some digital art etc :)
https://exilian.co.uk/forum/index.php?topic=5401.0
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on November 08, 2017, 08:35:11 AM
The Winter is coming...

(http://bigosaur.com/blog/images/witch-0171-ice.png)

A new version of the game is up with the Ice Mountain level:

- slide and glide across the snow as you fight - unless you have a mount
- 3 new enemy units
- 2 new ice weapons
- 1 new boss (Crazy Santa throwing exploding presents)
- added music and sfx volume adjustment to the pause screen
- fixed Mom Books drops for altars to match the achievement unlock description
- lightning now shoots through metal shields
- adjusted mana cost and base damage for some magic wands
- Fire sword now has 100% burn chance
- spawning minions no longer give you mana via Warbreaker (this is to prevent getting infinite number of points in daily challenge)
- fixed a couple of translation related bugs
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on November 08, 2017, 11:45:13 AM
Just defeated crazy Santa for the first time, as the chanter (well, I kinda defeated him - I basically just kept out the way and let my friend Undead King Salamis do 80% of the work). :)

A couple of thoughts:
- Could we get a visual dark version of the snow orbs? It looks really weird when a pogonip staff (of which I really like the name - it's not a word that's used in the UK at all, it's quite a fun one) is firing a mix of regular dark orbs and snow orbs.
- Mounts are currently super important, especially I think for archers, on the new level, I managed most of it as an archer but lining up for shots with the sliding effect is hellishly tough (the whole level is much easier for mages because you usually have some spread-shot effects by then) - some extra possibility of removing the sliding effect might be helpful (maybe a "snowshoes" item that occasionally turns up?). I guess maybe also I need to be using the multishot on the bow more and change my tactics...
- I was thinking of status effect removal stuff for the undead archer too - what about a rare item "mind focus amulet" that provides protection from hypochondria, avarice, extravagance, and distraction?
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on November 08, 2017, 02:16:11 PM
- Could we get a visual dark version of the snow orbs?

I had a similar thought, but I'm not sure about it. The idea was that those dark orbs fired from Pogonip staff have no freeze-chance effect, so you have to decide whether you want to combine it with dark orbs or not. If the graphics were different, players would think those always have frost chance. (I have to check this though, I just tested and it looks like they do freeze).

> pogonip staff (of which I really like the name - it's not a word that's used in the UK at all, it's quite a fun one)

I was looking for something that would cover both "ice" and "fog" in a single word :D

> is firing a mix of regular dark orbs and snow orbs.

Yes, it does look strange. Perhaps I should just add alternative graphics for it and make those dark-orb projectiles faster to match the speed of ice ones.

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I managed most of it as an archer but lining up for shots with the sliding effect is hellishly tough

Actually, I find the archer bearable. It takes some practice get a feel of how much it slides - after that you just run and stop a little bit earlier than usual to let it slide while you aim the arrow.

However, with a Knight you have to be really precise if you want your hits to connect.

Mages definitely have the easiest time.

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maybe a "snowshoes" item that occasionally turns up?

Yup, already in my notes, but I need to play-test level a lot more to see if it should be added. I mean, it would be an item only usable on one level and it kind of defeats the whole sliding difficulty. Additionally, I already have graphics ready for a Deer mount, and I'm thinking it would randomly show up somewhere on the ice level sometimes, so maybe that would be the replacement.

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provides protection from hypochondria, avarice, extravagance, and distraction

Sounds OP. The whole point of Skeleton Ranger is that you have to play the game with a handicap offseting his very-high damage. I just tried a run yesterday where I had 300+ damage per arrow shot by the end (killed the Santa with a single rage-shot). There might be some removal items, but I think those would work for one effect only. Maybe something like "remove one curse"...

Hm, I have a Halo "item" that would drop sometimes which was meant for multiplayer (extend the death countdown timer by 5 seconds). Maybe I should include curse removal into it's effects: "+5 seconds to co-op death timer" / "remove a random negative effect".
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on November 09, 2017, 04:20:04 PM
More mounts would also be a decent option that I'd be in favour of. :) I guess I'm partly just reacting a bit negatively to the sliding effect as it's the sort of thing I tend to enjoy less in games like this - I can certainly see the fact that it's an appropriate challenge to have in the game, but I personally get more frustrated by feeling like I can't control my own character properly than enjoying the challenge of it, I guess as usual going back to the fact that I tend to do quite slow/strategic play when I can.

Fair enough on the mental amulet - I guess I feel like the difficulty of healing is usually enough of a setback without the risk of permanent curses, but you may be right. A "remove 1 curse" item would also be a good call.

Also I think I've just about finished the equipment guide now... I'm sure I've missed some things, but I think I've got most of them!

EDIT: Also note, current game still has "Raindeer" as the name of the Reindeer pet, I can't remember if this was intentional for some reason or if it's just a typo?
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on November 09, 2017, 07:02:13 PM
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Also note, current game still has "Raindeer" as the name of the Reindeer pet, I can't remember if this was intentional for some reason or if it's just a typo?

It's a typo.

I'm currently making a new snow boss: Yeti. I already have a bunch of small Young Yetis running around (they are similar to the big green orc in the castle) and the boss is a big monster similar to Ogre Mama. I'm thinking to name him: Elder Yeti. Does that make sense?

I know of the Abominable Snowman name, but the 3rd boss will be a giant snowman, so that one is off to prevent confusion.

Or maybe you have some cool (no pun intended) ideas?
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on November 09, 2017, 07:28:35 PM
Sounds good :) Though I'd maybe suggest "Yeti Elder" rather than "Elder Yeti". Something being "Elder X" makes me think of either Elder Scrolls or Elder Gods/Signs, neither of which I think is the vibe you're going for.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on November 09, 2017, 07:29:11 PM
Also I think I've just about finished the equipment guide now... I'm sure I've missed some things, but I think I've got most of them!

Looks good. Few things:

Ice Mages freeze you with their projectile shots (20% freeze chance), while the Pogonip special slows you down for 1 battle and creates a fog which makes it harder to see the enemies and traps.

I'm going to remove the "iron" reference from the Snailbite arrows in the next version. I actually didn't notice that it was left in there until I read your guides. So, maybe a find&replace would be needed.

Crazy Santa has two close-combat attacks: staff slam and a hand slap doing 55 or 20 damage.

The Sharpshooter potion is actually meant to non-archer classes who have low starting range. So they can improve and use the arrows as a secondary weapon from greater distance.

Heavy Bones potions can especially be useful with weapons with knockdown effect (Warbreaker, Scepter, Earthquake staff). With high stomp damage you can just knock down enemies and one-shot them. If you combine this with the Horse pet, you can even kill the orcs, bushidos and do serious damage to small-sized bosses (violent knights, crystal wizard, necromancer, ringleader)

In the beer description maybe add a note that drinking two beers in a row reverses the controls back to normal.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on November 09, 2017, 07:56:18 PM
Scrolls:

Toxic Cloud is useful if you have a rogue sword. Create the cloud and then hide and just wait out while enemies lose a lot of HP. You can also use this tactics, if you have a teleport staff and you can teleport into unreachable location.

Random Teleport's main use is in co-op where you can use it to escape tough rooms when the death timer starts. If you teleport into an empty room, the timer stops and you can revive dead players and recuperate. It can also be used to rob shops in the early game if you don't have the weapons (hit the shopkeeper, grab the item you want and teleport away).

The Peace scroll is super useful in the necromancer boss fight because those minions do not spawn - necromancer keeps raising the same skeletons over and over.

Rotten Cheese Wheel is useful if you build up high poison damage via Cheese Wedges. It's easy to get to 24 poison damage or even more with replicate scrolls. Then just let a boss hit you once. It's useful for bosses that don't do much damage but can take time to kill (violent knights, ringleader).

Missing pet names are: Beaver Ben, Bird Britney, Hippopotamus Hector, Tiger Tony, Hedgehog Harry, Pengiun Peter, Rhino Ray, Turtle Tom, Wolf Walt.

Rabbit Rick and Bull Billy seem to be missing. For dog, maybe add an explanation how it's the only way to rob shops in the dungeon. Giraffe has been changed to +10 HP a long time ago (git says March 5th 2017).

Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on November 09, 2017, 08:53:05 PM
BTW, the guides are rather good. If you agree, I will link to those from the Steam page.

I'm also thinking maybe to create a couple of booklets with your descriptions mixed with a bunch of relevant screenshots from the game and maybe share those to the players when I show the game at expos or such. With your permission of course. I would list you as the author and myself as the booklet designer/editor. We can also print an URL to the forum with Exilian logo (shown on the back and/or front pages) for people to come and get up-to-date information (and maybe also explore Exilian further).
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on November 10, 2017, 10:49:51 PM
Yes, of course, that'd be great :)

And thanks for the extra information - will add that soon!
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on November 12, 2017, 10:51:40 AM
A few more details:

Blood Mixer gives 10HP, not 5.

Magic Map is very useful for the old catacombs / eye of ramana quest, because the maze is huge and you can use it to see where the boss room is. Also, for the Amanda (pyromancer quest) when you need to get through the battlements as fast as possible and then find a shop in the castle.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on November 12, 2017, 12:48:52 PM
(http://bigosaur.com/blog/images/witch-0175-yeti.png)

A new version is up with a new boss, the Yeti Elder who is a huge beast whose jumps cause ice to fall from the top of the mountain. He can also spawn smaller Young Yeti minions who also show up in various parts of the ice level.

Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on November 13, 2017, 08:28:43 PM
I got the achievement for beating the Santa :) Still not met the big yeti, though seen some little ones - they do 40dmg + freeze, right?
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on November 14, 2017, 10:07:53 AM
I got the achievement for beating the Santa :) Still not met the big yeti, though seen some little ones - they do 40dmg + freeze, right?

Yes.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on November 15, 2017, 11:21:03 AM
I have slain my first Yeti Elder :) Rather against the odds - today's daily challenge run, done as the Owlbear/Knight, involved me nearly dying in all of the last three boss battles. I went *into* the dungeon fight with 20hp left, gambled Felgin into an Executioner and then let the thieves/bandits fight it whilst staying out of the way. I then got cursed into nothingness in the dungeon, somehow managed to win that boss fight by slowing all the enemies down with a deadwood bow & throwing the mjolnir whilst keeping at a distance. Then on the last level I accidentally filled my last inv slot with weapons when I wanted to pick up something else ( :( ), so I couldn't get rid of the avarice: I did have a LOT of stored mana, though, and I had the twilight staff, so somehow I completed the level including the boss fight just on eating food (I also had the giraffe), including doing the Yeti boss fight on about 20hp + keeping moving very fast. One of the most bizarre runs I've done (and first time I've completed the ice level as a non-mage character).

One graphical thought - the younger Yetis look a LOT less furry/hairy than I'd expect them to... they look fine, but I guess the way they look doesn't shout "yeti" to me, and if I didn't know they were meant to be yetis I might just generally assume they were some other kind of mountain orc/troll thingy.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on November 15, 2017, 09:07:17 PM
One of the most bizarre runs I've done (and first time I've completed the ice level as a non-mage character).

Awesome. Sounds like one of those runs you don't forget easily. I had a couple of such interesting ones, especially since I risk way more than you do while playing.

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One graphical thought - the younger Yetis look a LOT less furry/hairy than I'd expect them to... they look fine, but I guess the way they look doesn't shout "yeti" to me, and if I didn't know they were meant to be yetis I might just generally assume they were some other kind of mountain orc/troll thingy.

Actually they are meant to be "Yeti babies", the fur hasn't grown yet  ;)

BTW, the Snowman boss is done, I'm testing the network code now - it should be in the game in a couple of days.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on November 16, 2017, 10:19:19 PM
Cool, looking forward to it :)

A couple of thoughts on Daily Challenges:

Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on November 18, 2017, 09:09:16 PM
or just avoid that room turning up in DCs?

I could do that. I will add it to my TODO list of the next release.

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rather than dying out of control and sliding all over the place accidentally

And I was thinking that the ice level was too easy :)

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some players may still choose to try that for Daily Challenges rather than keep going onto the ice.

Well, there will be a 7th level (desert) after the ice level, and ice+desert will be as long as the old catacombs approximately - but you get 2 level-complete bonuses.

In any case, I don't think those should be considered as alternatives. When I play, I go into the old catacombs and keep pushing forward until it becomes too risky. Then I back out and proceed to the ice level. I find the ice level rather easy - esp. if I have a mount. If there's an undead pig on the level I don't take it until I'm ready to leave through the portal.

Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on November 18, 2017, 09:09:56 PM
BTW, I did upload a new version earlier today. The Candy Snowman boss is in.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on November 18, 2017, 11:33:39 PM
Will there be any equivalent "area effects" in the sand level, out of interest? (And will there be more fire used, considering that the prev level is ice themed and poison is fairly common earlier on in the game?)
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on November 19, 2017, 10:56:28 AM
Will there be any equivalent "area effects" in the sand level, out of interest?

No.

Quote
And will there be more fire used, considering that the prev level is ice themed and poison is fairly common earlier on in the game?

That's the plan. Fire and some petrification. I'm still not 100% on it, will know when I start building the levels.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on November 19, 2017, 09:27:15 PM
Also, I'm sorry I haven't managed to finish the various guides yet - I've hit a rough patch with life and work and health all at once, so I'm suddenly being really slow at things :(
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on November 20, 2017, 09:26:37 AM
and health

I hope nothing serious. Get well first. Worry about the rest later.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on November 21, 2017, 05:52:16 PM
Don't worry, it's just a minor seasonal thing - I have a couple of underlying problems that mean those affect me worse than some people, but I'll be alright soon!

Finally had a daily challenge today where I had both catacombs and the necro staff, so I cleaned out every room of the lower catacombs entirely then did the ice level completely with a good ol' undead army led by King Salamis :) Solid 120,000+ score in the bag :)
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on November 21, 2017, 08:58:16 PM
Solid 120,000+ score in the bag :)

 :gandalfgrey:

Wow. BTW, the Trickster boss is coming soon to the dungeon. He will be able to clone himself (each clone having just 1 HP) and create some obstacles on your path. He'll have two weapons, both of which can drop for players to use.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on November 21, 2017, 09:52:29 PM
Ooh, exciting :)


Also, one thought from today - the blowfish blows up too frequently at the moment, I think. When you're down to 1 enemy they often just get pinned in place because as soon as they get up they get knocked down again, to the point where it's actually annoying (because e.g. they're being repeatedly slowly knocked down on a spike trap and to actually finish the battle without waiting ages you need to go and get yourself spiked to make the stomp attack). I feel like it should be a slower/less regular effect.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on November 22, 2017, 01:42:21 PM
Also, one thought from today - the blowfish blows up too frequently at the moment, I think. When you're down to 1 enemy they often just get pinned in place because as soon as they get up they get knocked down again, to the point where it's actually annoying (because e.g. they're being repeatedly slowly knocked down on a spike trap and to actually finish the battle without waiting ages you need to go and get yourself spiked to make the stomp attack). I feel like it should be a slower/less regular effect.

Actually that repeated knockdown has saved me multiple times, so I will keep it. It's also nice when you have built up strong stomp damage for easy kills. I admit I have yet to get into the spike situation, but I understand how it can be frustrating. Maybe I should just increase the blowfish damage. I kept it low (only 3) because I wanted the bat to be the most dangerous one and it does only 15. Maybe blowfish should do 20, and bat should do 40 or something like that.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on November 22, 2017, 01:55:33 PM
I'm not sure increasing blowfish damage would help, 20 sounds too high - I think you just need to decrease the frequency a little, so there's more like 3/4 of a second between them getting up and getting knocked down again (time for a sword-swipe or hammer hit). They'll be stunned for basically all that time anyway so it shouldn't really put the player in any more danger. I do think the bat should do more like 30-40dmg though to make it a worthwhile pet to have - I almost never take it at the moment unless I have the wolf already.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on November 23, 2017, 08:45:29 PM
Version 2.7.2 is online:

- a new boss for the dungeon level: Trickster. He's able to create clones of himself and use his staff to create obstacles on the battlefield. He's got a special axe that can be thrown through obstacles, so you have to tear them down before he kills you
- two new weapons (drops from the Trickster boss, but also random drop from chests and pedestals in treasure rooms)
- fixed a bug where the game would crash if you try to set the big Yeti boss on fire
- the minions for the ice level boss fights are ice mages now
- fixed a bug where the Witch mom would disappear if you hit her with a meteor, hail or celestial hammer
- fixed various bugs regarding frozen and petrified enemies
- fixed rider and mount positioning for the boar and undead pig. Fired projectiles (orbs, arrows, thrown weapons) are now properly vertically aligned
- increased damage for pet attacks. The blowfish can now kill enemies easily and the Bat does 40 damage per hit.
- the Witch mom shows up at the start of the ice level to advance the story

BTW, how do you feel about the ice level bosses? I somehow feel that Snowman and Yeti are alright, but Santa is too easy. I'm thinking to change the logic for his presents - instead of exploding right away, they would remain on the ground and only explode if you touch them. I mean, it's 6th level of the 7-level game, perhaps it's time bosses get hard to beat.

Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on November 23, 2017, 09:39:20 PM
I feel like I've found Yeti marginally easier than Santa so far (plug with lots of snailbites, and then he's actually vulnerable whilst rolling), though it's hard to tell because so much is just the luck of what state I'm in by that point in the game - Snowman I feel is definitely the hardest of the three, but that's partly because I haven't found good tactics for him yet. That present change would make the Santa harder, certainly, might be interesting to test at least. Why did you change the minions to ice mages, btw? I can see the logic behind making them tougher, but I feel like using that many ice mages specifically may make the boss fight excessively tough in runs where you don't find a mammoth amulet... I dunno. I just have a feeling that with three Ice Mages + trying to fight a boss, I'll just end up using scrolls or fancy one-hitter tricks any times when I don't have that amulet and would never actually do the fight properly.

Also, minor point - if I'm right from observation, the rocks in the long jump rooms currently never have items in. This seems kind of unfair, as there's no way for players to tell that they're not normal rocks.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on November 24, 2017, 08:33:54 AM
Why did you change the minions to ice mages, btw?

I felt like the boss fight (esp. Santa) was much easier than the regular rooms on ice level, so I wanted to balance that. Perhaps something else should be done instead of that. I guess I need to play-test the game more to see.

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if I'm right from observation, the rocks in the long jump rooms currently never have items in.

Yes. I didn't want the players to destroy the rocks... esp. since some are near the spikes and items dropping on spikes doesn't feel right. Not sure what to do here, perhaps the NPC on that screen should tell you something about that?

Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on November 25, 2017, 06:58:16 PM
I feel like the best solution would be to make the rock a different type/visually different in some way, and most importantly make it so they're immune to being blown up rather than just not containing anything, which more clearly signals to the player that they shouldn't do that.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on November 28, 2017, 09:24:57 PM
I'm adding a potion (to the random pool) that will give you 100% double damage change for 1 battle. I have two ideas for the name:

1. "Every hit is crit"
2. "Crit every hit"

I somehow feel like the first one is much better, but I haven't played much D&D so I'm not sure.

Which one do you like better?

P.S. Also, I'm preparing a bunch of other new potions and weapons for the next release.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on November 28, 2017, 10:02:05 PM
"Every hit's a crit" would be my suggestion :)

Good job on all the new content - it's coming out rather faster than I can write the guide to it :P What does the stickiness on the slime king actually do? I couldn't tell when I fought it what effect it was actually having...

Also I just got caught and slowly killed between two ice shooters - given I had a lot of health, this took AGES, and I had no way of stopping it. Worst death ever :(
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on November 29, 2017, 09:52:24 AM
"Every hit's a crit" would be my suggestion :)

Ah, of course. Thanks!

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What does the stickiness on the slime king actually do?

The "Sticky feet" has two effects: 1. slows you down and 2. protects you from sliding on snow/ice. There will soon be an item you can pick up with the same effect, so you will be able to examine it closely.

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Also I just got caught and slowly killed between two ice shooters - given I had a lot of health, this took AGES, and I had no way of stopping it. Worst death ever :(

Those two in one of the treasure rooms? Yes, it's a trap. It happened to me while I was making that room, and I liked it and decided to leave it there. I suppose it will happen to most players once and after that they will be extra careful in that one room.

BTW, I'm adding a new random potion effect that will give you 1% skill (magic,melee,archery) bonus for every 100 gold you have. I tried it out last night and it stacks really nice with avarice (to the point it becomes OP if you survive the old catacombs).

My plan is to add about 20-25 new things in the game over the next week or so - mostly new items with special mechanics, but a couple of potion effects and weapons as well. I got most details planned out already, just need to add graphics and program it.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on November 29, 2017, 11:18:05 AM
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Those two in one of the treasure rooms? Yes, it's a trap.]Those two in one of the treasure rooms? Yes, it's a trap.
Yes, I figured that out now :P Was just a pity to lose such a good character in the process!

I think all three of the guides are mostly up to date now, anyway, so they should be useable - there'll be more ideas to add, I'm sure, and especially I need to add an overview of the character classes to the general gameplay advice guide, but for now I think they're functional :)
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on November 29, 2017, 03:34:23 PM
I think all three of the guides are mostly up to date now, anyway, so they should be useable - there'll be more ideas to add, I'm sure, and especially I need to add an overview of the character classes to the general gameplay advice guide, but for now I think they're functional :)

Awesome!

Here are some corrections/details:

BTW, The Ogre Mama has a third attack: she can slap you if you stand behind her and attack her. This is rarely seen in single-player games but it often catches novice melee players by surprise in co-op games.

Cyclops damage is 30 for punch and 60 for club. Both knock you down.

P.S. I love how quickly you figured out the importance of poison for the Trickster fight.

Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on November 29, 2017, 03:53:30 PM
BTW, I'm re-reading some of the old descriptions now. I have reduced the Healing Staff damage to 6 recently so its section would have to be updated. And Fireball staff is only 3 mana now.

Staff of the Dead has always had 9 damage, I don't know why it says 7.

Shepherd staff is super useful to quickly eliminate tough enemies like Orcs in the castle, Vampiresses in the old Catacombs and Skeleton Mages when they are near you but behind an obstacle so you cannot hurt them directly.

You probably haven't seen it yet, but the staff that the Trickster has can sometimes drop in a chest/pedestal or by Trickster himself. It does 8 damage and can create temporary walls of barrels for protection. Can be very useful, especially when combined with the Ethereal Bow.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on December 01, 2017, 10:49:37 PM
Oops, thanks for those, will try and update soon. Also, do you have a list/spreadsheet of monster health values? I kinda want to add health and attack stats to the UMM, but determining health in particular via having to go round and kill/be killed by everything in the game is going to be a really grimly slow process.

I'm still not sure about the blowfish - it does hold you up less now, though I worry it's a bit OP sometimes, especially when it just traps a whole bunch of enemies next to a fence and kills all of them pretty efficiently.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on December 01, 2017, 10:53:34 PM
Also, do you have a list/spreadsheet of monster health values?

Not really, I can write some code to extract the units, but for bosses I will have to hunt it down across multiple files. Boss HP depends on game mode (casual/regular) and number of players. I will create a list for you now.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on December 01, 2017, 10:57:45 PM
I'm considering to change is the way Archery works by default. Here are the current problems from my point of view:

1. the 3-arrow strong attack is rarely useful. It's hard to aim and doesn't do much damage. It does have two uses:

a) when you have really, really high damage (300+). But by the time you get that you are probably on the ice level and enemies have more HP, or
b) you want to poison/petrify/freeze/burn multiple enemies. While this second case is valid, I find that I very rarely use it.

2. the regular arrow attack does so much damage that it immediately knocks down most regular enemies. This can be useful when there are a lot of them. However, when there is only one enemy, you need to try to stomp (which usually isn't enough damage to kill) or wait for him to get up and use the second arrow to kill (which usually does enough damage).

What I would like to do is change the default attack set for the bows. Instead of the current "single" and "triple" arrow attacks, the bows would have "regular" and "knockdown" attacks. Hitting an enemy with the regular attack would make him stand his ground. The strong attack button would trigger the "knockdown" attack that always knocks down an enemy (for "small" enemies, not bosses).

The special (rage) attack would be upgraded to always be the triple-arrow attack (but spend only 1 arrow) + piercing as it already has. So, you could still use it to poison/freeze/etc. multiple enemies, but not as often as before.

How do you feel about this ideas? Do you currently use the triple-attack?
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on December 01, 2017, 11:08:05 PM
I will create a list for you now

Here it is for the regular game (in alphabetical order):

Bandit: 120
Bat: 60
Boar: 100
Brigand: 80
Bushido: 320
Castle Guard: 90
Goblin Berserker: 90
Goblin Blaggard: 90
Goblin Grunt: 100
Goblin Shaman: 120
Goblin Warrior: 60
Guard Captain: 80
Ice Archer: 170
Ice Raider: 250
Ice Mage: 200
King: 150
Orc: 200
Princess: 100
Sky Wizard: 100
Skeleton Warrior: 100
Skeleton Archer: 100
Thief: 100
Troll: 220
Undead Mage: 90
Vampiress: 300
Young Yeti: 320

Bosses (in regular game):

Ogre Mama: 400 + 300*players
Earth Golem: 400 + 250*players
Cyclops: 300 + 200*players
Dragon: 400 + 500*players
Hornet Queen: 400 + 450*players
Slime King: 500+500*players
Executioner: 600 + 600*players
Crystal Wizard: 400 + 400*players
VioleNt Knight: 250 + 250*players
The Simerian Butcher: 700 + 700*players
Felgin the ringleader: 700 + 500*players
Trickster: 800 + 500*players
Necromancer: 600 + 500*players
Undead King Salamis: 700 + 300*players
Vampire Lord: 600 + 400*players
Crazy Santa: 1200 + 1000*players
Candy Snowman: 1200 + 1200*players
Yeti Elder: 1500 + 1500*players
War Sheep: 500

Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on December 01, 2017, 11:22:23 PM
Fantastic, thankyou for the list! :) Undead Boar and Hornet seem to be missing still.

I don't usually use the triple-shot - the fact that it uses up multiple arrows for not much damage is the main reason, I think. I guess it'd be worth testing a change. Only thing I'm wondering is if it might make robbing shops too easy if there's an always-knockdown attack: that with snailbite arrows, if I could repeatedly knock down the bushido, might make it super easy (I can currently rob a shop at base speed with bow + snailbites, but it takes very quick and careful maneuvering and I don't need to get it much wrong to die).
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on December 01, 2017, 11:31:19 PM
Fantastic, thankyou for the list! :) Undead Boar and Hornet seem to be missing still.

All NPCs and non-hostile units are missing. Not sure if you need those. Undead Boar has the same as regular Boar: 100, Hornet has 50.

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Only thing I'm wondering is if it might make robbing shops too easy if there's an always-knockdown attack

Only on regular, "small", enemies. Bushido, Orc, Vampiress, Young Yeti are "medium" sized units and would be immune to that effect.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on December 04, 2017, 11:58:27 PM
OK, makes sense :)

Thankyou! And no, I don't think it's worth putting all the NPCs in the monster manual, I may do if I get bored sometime I guess but there's plenty to do as it is.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on December 11, 2017, 11:13:22 AM
(http://bigosaur.com/blog/images/witch-0176-drop.png)

A new version is up:
- 17 new items with unique mechanics
- 5 new weapons with unique mechanics
- 4 new potion effects
- a new scroll: Confusion
- a new quest area in the forest where you can play baseball
- 6 new achievements
- all bows now come with a low-damage knife as a strong attack. You can use the knife to quickly break barrels and boxes and stay alive if you run out of arrows
- get a special reward from the shopkeeper if you buy all the items
- fireball + dark orb synergy now works
- fixed returning bow animation for the Archer
- fixed swoosh animation for melee swing attacks
- all Mom's Books can now be duplicated for increased effect (double poison/fire damage, double freeze duration, etc.)
- added a note showing which sword attacks are quick in the weapon description
- removed the Catacombs Shortcut from the daily challenge
- reduced the mana cost for the Bottomless Bag of Bombs
- show current run time on the pause screen
- fixed the Slime King boss netcode bug
- fixed bug when a player would get sticky feet if he walked into another player that had the effect
- added an option to show the timer during the game.

PvP fixes:
- sudden death timer is no longer running when the game is paused
- using twilight staff spell only increases power for the caster
- turret staff clones now shoot at other players and cannot harm the caster
- fixed the dead animation glitch for the winning player after he gets smashed with the huge hammer
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on December 11, 2017, 12:12:17 PM
Nice! Might be a while before I get all the guides updated, I've found most of the new stuff & what it does now but I've only got a week left before I take a trip back to the UK for Christmas so things are a bit hectic at the moment.

A few thoughts before I forget though:
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on December 11, 2017, 01:26:56 PM
Why does the portable foundry have no mana cost? It's way more powerful than the magic chest, which does.

I initially wanted it to have mana cost, but if it did, you would be tempted to go through a very tedious process of bringing all the items into a single room to convert them with a single mana-spend.

Magic chest is limited by mana, Fondry is limited with the number of items that drop. Maybe I should increase the magic chest coin amount or reduce the mana cost - I do find that I rarely use it because it doesn't give you much gold.

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Does "special attacks" on the cushion just mean rage attacks?

Yes. Every attack that spends mana/rage, even magic buffs.

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I feel like the bomb effect on the miner's shield should maybe be a removable status effect or something?

If you wear an item/amulet/etc. it makes no sense that a potion would remove it.

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I dunno, it feels a big playstyle change for what appears to be a not terribly uncommon item.

This is what I wanted to accomplish. Have some runs that feel and play differently so the players never get bored.

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Are we going to get a scroll of summon monsters at some point? It's a bit of a classic of roguelikes etc and it'd work quite well in this game, I think.

Not a bad idea, although I've seen various variants of that. Do you have some idea how exactly would it work?

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There's now a whole bunch of dwarven or plausibly-dwarven items (spinner, ring, miners' shield, foundry) - but no dwarves. I was thinking that using dwarves as the ice mountain shopkeepers might fit thematically quite well?.

Good idea. Added to my TODO list.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on December 11, 2017, 08:43:35 PM
Decided to try and see how do-able the "In A Rush" achievement is. Took me most of the evening and a LOT of runs to complete it - it's one of those achievements where you need to actually go out achievement hunting, and even then you need to be very lucky to get all the boss fights close enough to level starts to have a decent chance. It's nice to have a few of those really difficult ones on the list, I guess.

If you tweak magic chest, I'd increase the gold amount given - I agree it's quite low at the moment compared to other things I could use that mana for.

So does the cushion give invulnerability to wizards only during their casting action, or for as long as the spell is in play? Seems super powerful if it's the latter.

Regarding summon monsters - basically I was thinking it would spawn (maybe on the other side of the room) a small number extra monsters, ideally some of the bigger/more monstrous ones (and maybe a couple of bonus ones if the art budget stretches that far). These would then fight both you and the enemies, but might give you some useful cover/distraction, especially in boss fights. It would also be a fun surprise if you tried reading it at random in forest level and suddenly accidentally summoned three yetis or whatever.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on December 11, 2017, 09:35:10 PM
Decided to try and see how do-able the "In A Rush" achievement is. Took me most of the evening and a LOT of runs to complete it - it's one of those achievements where you need to actually go out achievement hunting and even then you need to be very lucky

With a proper starting item you could be less reliant on luck. At first I tried the regular "whatever the game gives me" approach, managed to beat it on the third try (because level 1 and 2 bosses were only two rooms away) and thought it was easy. Then some player complained on their Twitch stream, so I tried again and hit a wall. I did notice that some starting items help a lot, so I would just restart until I got one of those.

For the hero I pick Skeleton Ranger because he can one-shot from the very start. Bottomless Bag of Bombs is great to skip rooms, Magic Map is great not having to rely on luck to explore, but my favorite is the Rainbow Horn - allow monsters to hit you until you're barely alive and then 200+ damage makes the boss fights much shorter. Still, my success rate is maybe once is 10 runs. It's cool that it takes only 5 minutes to try.

I recorded a couple of runs, but it will take some time to upload to YouTube because my upload speed is abysmal.

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If you tweak magic chest, I'd increase the gold amount given - I agree it's quite low at the moment compared to other things I could use that mana for.

I have increased it to 100. Will test to see how it feels.

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So does the cushion give invulnerability to wizards only during their casting action, or for as long as the spell is in play? Seems super powerful if it's the latter.

Only during casting. The idea with cushion is to save you from situations where you have mana/rage but enemies keep stunning and you can you cannot perform the attack/buff.

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Regarding summon monsters - basically I was thinking it would spawn (maybe on the other side of the room) a small number extra monsters, ideally some of the bigger/more monstrous ones (and maybe a couple of bonus ones if the art budget stretches that far). These would then fight both you and the enemies, but might give you some useful cover/distraction, especially in boss fights. It would also be a fun surprise if you tried reading it at random in forest level and suddenly accidentally summoned three yetis or whatever.

Would those monsters follow you into other rooms like guards and undead servants? This part of my code was somewhat messy, so I have avoided adding much features to it (for example, I had an idea that you can hire Bushido for 100gp/battle), but maybe I should just bite the bullet and rewrite it to allow any unit to follow the player.

Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on December 11, 2017, 10:01:17 PM
I suspect 100 for the chest will be too high - I was thinking more like 50.

Yes, I eventually completed In A Rush with skele ranger + magic map. I still think it takes a good degree of luck - though of course it's probably the worst achievement for me to attempt, since it's the most alien to how I normally play the game! I think it usually takes ten minutes for me to get past the forest level...

I was just thinking that the summoned monsters would be "wild", not allied to the player, and would be part of the battle so wouldn't follow you around. I think more ally units would be good (on which note, I feel like the mana cost for the sceptre may be too high, I never use it atm because the soldiers just always walk straight into traps and get poisoned and die), but that wasn't how I was thinking of Summon Monsters being implement.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on December 12, 2017, 10:13:59 AM
I suspect 100 for the chest will be too high - I was thinking more like 50.

I feel like anything lower than 100 doesn't make it desirable. It's 33 per room but takes an inventory slot and you don't have any mana for other things.

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Yes, I eventually completed In A Rush with skele ranger + magic map. I still think it takes a good degree of luck - though of course it's probably the worst achievement for me to attempt, since it's the most alien to how I normally play the game! I think it usually takes ten minutes for me to get past the forest level...

:) Here's my attempt with the Magic Bag (forgot to take the Infinite Bow and ran out of arrows near the end):


And a successful one with the Unicorn Horn:


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I was just thinking that the summoned monsters would be "wild", not allied to the player, and would be part of the battle so wouldn't follow you around


Is this how the "classic" summon spell works? I haven't played D&D myself, but as far as I know, "summon" usually means "allied". For example, this page:

http://www.d20pfsrd.com/magic/all-spells/s/summon-monster/

states "It attacks your opponents to the best of its ability."

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(on which note, I feel like the mana cost for the sceptre may be too high, I never use it atm because the soldiers just always walk straight into traps and get poisoned and die), but that wasn't how I was thinking of Summon Monsters being implement.

You're right. Maybe I should lower the sceptre cost to 1 mana.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on December 12, 2017, 06:25:03 PM
Summon usually means allied in D&D spellcasting, I think, but this isn't true of standard English nor of roguelikes in general, which are mainly what I was thinking of - I think the ToME summon monster scrolls act more like what I was suggesting, and the Pixel Dungeon summon monster traps. Also, I guess it makes sense if a cast spell summons allies (you cast it after all) whereas if you're reading a scroll someone else inscribed you wouldn't necessarily know what it summoned or have an ability to control it.

Also, the cutlass keeps having its effect on spawned goons in the boss fights, so you can currently "farm" them and keep notching up your combat stat forever.

Agreed on the sceptre being 1 mana - especially as it's a pretty poor combat weapon.

I see what you mean about the chest - I dunno, I feel like some of the new & tweaked items may be getting a bit powerful/unpredictable and might want to be made a little rarer to compensate, but I'm not sure.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on December 13, 2017, 10:34:54 PM
if you're reading a scroll someone else inscribed you wouldn't necessarily know what it summoned or have an ability to control it.

Ah, makes sense. Like cultists drawing a pentagram and summoning a demon, etc.


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Also, the cutlass keeps having its effect on spawned goons in the boss fights, so you can currently "farm" them and keep notching up your combat stat forever.

This should not happen. I just checked the code. Perhaps the bug is that I forgot to flag some of the spawning enemies as such. Do you remember which fight it was?

Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on December 13, 2017, 10:39:42 PM
This should not happen. I just checked the code. Perhaps the bug is that I forgot to flag some of the spawning enemies as such. Do you remember which fight it was?

Nevermind, I found it. Both the Goblin HQ (first level boss fight) and Guard HQ (2nd and 3rd) level did not set the flag. I will fix it in a new version tomorrow.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on December 13, 2017, 10:45:17 PM
Good stuff :)

I'm thinking of making a couple more winter/Christmas character skins, not sure what to do yet - I have the Father Christmas archer from last year, I might do a snowman knight or something, not sure :)
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on December 15, 2017, 02:55:28 PM
Version 2.8.7 is online:

- fixed the bug where the game could sometimes crash if a pet attacks the Snowman while he is holding up his cane to defend from the projectiles
- show proper arrow graphics when you switch arrow in a middle of attack animation
- show proper arrow graphics when you run out of one type of arrows and the archer starts to shoot a different type
- fixed the hair color for the evil princess death animation
- some bows would transfer their special effects (ex. freezing) to the backup knife - fixed
- reduced the Shepherd staff mana cost to 1
- fixed the gap between the fences (gates) in one of the battlements rooms
- fixed the problem where the hero would sometimes automatically start shooting after being dead or knocked down
- removed special effects (Cutlass, Warbreaker, etc.) from respawning minions in the boss fights in levels 1, 2 and 3
- updated some of the translations
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on December 17, 2017, 10:09:15 PM
Fix suggestion: could you turn off the "teleport spots" that appear for the teleport staff when the player no longer has the staff equipped? It's kind of annoying seeing them if I only picked the staff up once several levels ago.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on December 18, 2017, 11:23:46 AM
Fix suggestion: could you turn off the "teleport spots" that appear for the teleport staff when the player no longer has the staff equipped? It's kind of annoying seeing them if I only picked the staff up once several levels ago.

I actually put those up deliberately so players can see what they're missing out on. I have watched many players playing the game on Twitch and YouTube and they just pick the staff up, teleport once across the screen and then discard it. If those "whirls" were not visible, they would never figure out that the Teleport staff can be used to reach those "special" places.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on December 18, 2017, 10:53:17 PM
Couldn't you let people know that via the loading screen suggestions/tips though? I can see that it's useful for newer players to learn that, but as a more experienced player it's really annoying.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on December 19, 2017, 11:08:10 AM
Couldn't you let people know that via the loading screen suggestions/tips though?

I find that people start to ignore these very quickly.

as a more experienced player it's really annoying.

I don't understand why do you find it annoying? It doesn't really change the gameplay at all. I barely notice it while playing. Is it distracting, or you just get angry because you could have taken the staff but now you cannot get there and it annoys you?

As a solution, I could add an option in the Settings to hide it, but it somehow doesn't feel like it's something that important to warrant a special setting.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on December 20, 2017, 06:48:29 PM
I think it's both - I do find it distracting, and whilst angry would be the wrong word, I guess it feels like the game is giving me irrelevant information that is frustrating and that penalises me for playing correctly. For example, if I find a tele-staff on level 1, it usually make sense to ping to the corners of the shops and get the barrel contents there, even in cases where I don't need a staff and have much better things to take to the next level. It's not always the correct move to keep the staff with you. At the moment, though, I often decide not to pick it up at all, because permanently having the flashy teleport pings for the rest of the game is just a frustrating distraction.

I do see that it's not important enough to warrant a whole setting... You could do something like add an achievement for teleporting to multiple hidden locations in a game, and then switch the teleport signs off when you're not holding the staff after the player gets that (& thus "proves" they know how to use the staff), but that might be quite complex to do I guess. It may not be worth the trouble of fixing the problem at all, but it is really annoying for me personally.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on December 21, 2017, 11:20:55 AM
You could do something like add an achievement for teleporting to multiple hidden locations in a game, and then switch the teleport signs off when you're not holding the staff after the player gets that (& thus "proves" they know how to use the staff), but that might be quite complex to do I guess.

Not really that complex now. I have added a new framework for dealing with such achievements recently. However, I still find it useful to see the teleport destination, even if you don't have the staff with you, so you know that you can reach it in one of the future runs. IIRC there are a couple of rooms where it's not clear whether the teleport staff would help or not. Because of this, I'm not sure that hiding it is the thing all players would want.

Now that I think about it more, it looks like the best way would be to have an option in the settings after all.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on December 21, 2017, 12:19:32 PM
Here's a list of new stuff added recently with short descriptions, to save you some time when you get around to update the guides:

Potions:

- Apprentizer: every time you spend mana (using an item or a staff) your magic skill increases by 1%. Drinking multiple potions stacks, so if you drink 5 of those, every time you use mana, your magic skill increases by 5%. Pretty OP for mages, but also usable for Knights and Archers as you can build up your magic and use the various helper items/weapons more effectively (ex. Earthquake staff breaks more rocks, Turret staff shoots more powerful orbs, Snake staff buffs your sword/bow with stronger poison, etc.)

- Money is Power: every 100 coins you have give you +1% to all skills (melee, magic, archery). The effect stacks, so if you drink 5 potions and have 300 coins, you would get +15% boost to all skills. This potion is OP when combined with Avarice or other items that earn you a lot of gold (ex. Magic Chest)

- Every Hit's a Crit: gives you 100% critical chance for the next battle. Similar to Mega Boost, it's useful to save for bosses and other tough fights.

- Bomberman: same effect as Double Bomb item, see below.

Scroll:

- Confusion: all enemies start thinking that everyone is their enemy. It also enables "friendly fire" on enemy units so they can hit each other even with orbs or thrown weapons. The AI might still decide to attack the player, especially if you hit an enemy. Useful when there are many enemies on the screen. It only works for enemies that are present, so don't use it too early in the boss fights - wait for some minions to spawn first.

Weapons:

- Cutlass: 7/17 damage, 65 reach. Sword moveset. +1% melee skill for every kill - does not count for spawned minions. Very usable weapon if you get it early or mid-game.

- Sword of the Damned: 40/50 damage, 91 reach. Sword moveset. The most deadly melee weapon in the game damage wise. The sword is cursed and you lose HP every time you hit an enemy (-5HP for quick attack and -10HP for strong attack, damage reduction from shields does not help here). If you have a giraffe and/or strawberry staff at hand it creates a nice challenge of having to restore you health all the time. Health/mana potions become very usable. Also usable if you get the Bare Bones Amulet and try to play without getting hit at all.

- Batting Sword: 8/18 damage, 81 reach, sword moveset. A decent sword for the early game (and later if upgraded). Has ability to repel enemy projectiles back at them. It takes a lot of practice to actually do that for Guard spears and Goblin Berserker axes as the window for hitting is short. You can use it to repel the crown of the Slime King boss for high damage. It's easy to repel multiple weapons at once if you use the rage attack (dash). There's a new quest in the forest where you can try to repel some axes across the screen and get runestones from barrels on the other side (or you can just teleport across if you have the teleport staff)

- Great Blood Axe: 20/30, 96 reach. Similar to the War Axe it has the quick melee swing attack that deals a lot of damage. This weapon feeds on blood - it gets +1 damage after every battle, but you lose 50 HP every time you bring it into a new room. This weapon is for players who want high risk/reward ratio. If you get it early on, it will get very strong and quickly clear rooms of enemies, but you can also die from any shot. It combines very well with the Unicorn Horn - since you're going to play with low HP all the time, you might as well enjoy the double-damage benefit. If you also find the Dwarven Spinner, this weapon can one-shot most enemies in the game

- Clockwork staff: 6 damage. If you have gold, it will shoot it (1 coin per orb) adding +15 damage to those orbs. This fixed damage upgrade makes it usable for knights as well if they need a ranged option for some boss/shop fights and don't want to carry bow and arrows. The staff is extremely usable in the dungeon as you can turn off all the traps making the level much easier and also allowing you to rob the shops without much trouble.

- Notched bow: 50 bow damage, 30% chance to fire three arrows instead of one (each shot spends only 1 arrow regardless).

Items:

- Chain Reactor: makes the enemies drop bombs when they die (one to the left and one to the right) if you keep the enemies lined up, this can create a nice chain reaction and kill them all. Duplicating it has no effect.

- Double Bomb: when you drop a bomb, you will drop another one for free in the opposite direction. Duplicating (and/or drinking Bomberman potions) makes you drop 3,4,5... etc. bombs all arranged in a circular area around the player.

- Silver Coin: you can only get the coin by buying 4 items in a shop. The coin is a single-use item which you can carry with you (just like bombs, for example) and it teleports you into a randomly selected shop in the level. If you are already in a shop it will teleport you into another one. Some of the uses for this item is the Amanda's quest (so you can quickly get into the shop in the Castle) and whenever you need to escape from tough situations into a safe place.

- Wooden Shield: halves the damage taken for 10 hits. Same effect like the starting Knight's shield or the Toughness potion

- Warrior's Emblem: adds 40% to your melee skill

- Green Slimeball: your feet become sticky, making you much slower (-2 speed) but you no longer slide on ice. This is the same effect as walking into a puddle created by the Slime Boss, except it's permanent. If you have a mount or low speed, it is advisable to skip this. It can be duplicated, but it's only worth it in co-op games, so that all players can have one.

- Battle Horn: increases the "flight" speed of projectiles: orbs, arrows, thrown weapons. It does not affect the shooting speed, only how fast the projectiles fly. This is very useful to reduce slowdown the effect of the Full Metal Jacket. It can be duplicated for increased effect.

- Pillow: makes you invulnerable during special attacks. Basically this prevents the enemy hits from interrupting your special attack animation. This includes rage attacks like "dash" or "piercing arrow" and magic "buff" animations. So you know when you press the special attack button that it cannot be interrupted by getting hit. You can also use this fact to walk through some traps without getting hit.

- Steel boots: slow you down (-1 speed) and make you immune to floor traps. Currently only useful in the dungeon, where you can use it to rob the shops as well.

- Goldsmith's magnet: make all the coins in the room fly toward you. Very nice when combined with the Portable Foundry and the Bear pet allowing you to turn unreachable items into gold and pick it up.

- Dwarven Spinner: gives you triple melee damage for axes and hammers. All thrown weapons are tripled. This combines great with Mjolnir, and also with the Ringleader Hammer - you can throw 3 hammers, each doing 40 damage.

- Carpenter's Emblem: creates a copy of any thrown weapon - flying in the opposite direction. This makes the Ringleader Hammer very usable alternative to Mjolnir as you don't have to turn to throw it. Still Mjolnir bounces so they kind of even out. If you get the Dwarven Spinner as well, it can quickly turn into an OP combination with one of those throwing hammers.

- Miner's Shield: 10 hits damage reduction (similar to wooden shield) AND you drop a bomb whenever you get hit. This can change your play style significantly as you might position yourself to get hit in such a way to break some rocks with those bombs that drop. It gets really interesting if you have had a couple of bomberman potions and the Ice Bomb, it can easily freeze and kill all the enemies around you (just be careful not to run into some of the bombs yourself).

- Bare Bones Amulet: reduces your health to 20, your HP to 1 and mana cost for all items and weapons to 1. Pretty risky, but if you can find some blood runestones it can be great. Also, if you've got a Bottomless Bag, you can create a bomb in every room and basically skip everything except the boss battles.

- Mom's Book of Chores: slows down all enemies in every room you enter. Similar to the Lazy Enemies scroll, but it's permanent effect and works in every room. Unlike other books, this book cannot be obtained via altars. The only places to get it is the pedestal after the boss fight in the old catacombs and the starting pedestal in the forest (only if you haven't beaten the Executioner yet).

- Elven shield: protects you from 20 ranged hits (orbs, arrows, thrown weapons). It doesn't look like much, but being able to walk and attack without being interrupted has saved me so many times, especially in some boss fights where the boss or his minions use the ranges attacks. Worth to duplicate because the effect stacks.

- Bear in the Barrel. Extends the weird connection between bears and barrels in the game (the bear pet breaks all the barrels and boxes). Every time a barrel is destroyed (either by you, pets or enemies) the player gets full rage. Very useful in long fights in rooms with many barrels. Combines very well with the Evergreen Oak Branch staff (which lets you create barrels).

- Portable Foundry: a non-consumable item allowing you to smelt any item or weapon into gold. It doesn't cost any mana, so you can just bring it along and smelt all the things you don't need

Some important changes:

- bows now come with a "backup" dagger you can use as a melee weapon. There is no triple-shot by default anymore (but Notched bow has triple shot chance)

- Celestial Hammer now automatically aims at the enemies

- Shepherd staff mana cost is reduced to 1

- Healer shop vendor sometimes sells the staff so you don't have to kill her to get it

- reduced the Bottomless Bag of Bombs mana cost to 3
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on December 23, 2017, 12:44:45 AM
Thankyou :)
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on December 27, 2017, 10:15:36 PM
A new version is up. You can ride the baby dragons now. While you're on a flying dragon, you can fly over chasms and floor traps. You are also immune to slime puddles during the Slime King boss fight.

The dragons breathe fire at the enemies on their own. You can use a magic staff or a bow and shoot to the left or right to make them shoot in the same direction.

Currently the dragon mounts have 10% chance of randomly showing up on the battlements level. The probability is low because they are really powerful. I will probably tweak this later, maybe add a room in the ice or desert level where you can get them as well. Currently I'm thinking about a challenge room where you have to defeat 2, 3 or maybe 4 dragons, and if you manage to do it, you can get the baby dragons to ride.

(http://cdn.edgecast.steamstatic.com/steamcommunity/public/images/clans/26509154/786769ce268d76132375c68024313f6732d1f321.png)
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on December 28, 2017, 12:25:23 PM
Nice! :) And yes, dragons sound like they should be a challenge to get.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on January 15, 2018, 10:56:14 PM
I just finally updated all the guides :)

Also, check out the stats from a neat Money Is Power + Barebones + Chest combo in a recent DC (this is from a couple of days ago:
(https://i.imgur.com/9WiHRDg.jpg)


I've had some good runs lately - though today's was marred by the fact that I had a super powerful character (knight class) who completely cleared out the catacombs, was in good shape, had both King Salamis AND the Vampire Lord as bodyguards... and then just got demolished by the snowman :( There was no mammoth amulet in the game, or any protection from ice slippage, and I just got caught and gunned down by the ice wizards in the boss fight (who also completely neutralised the two undead with freezing).

Also, what HP do the baby dragons have? I really like them :) Although graphically I think might look better if they had some change to make them look more "baby" rather than just like tiny versions of the adult. Maybe if they were less blotchy? I dunno. It's just a minor thought on a potential tweak - they do look OK as is.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on January 16, 2018, 03:39:31 PM
Also, check out the stats from a neat Money Is Power + Barebones + Chest combo in a recent DC (this is from a couple of days ago:

Wow. I see you also turned all the items into gold for extra power. I'm planning to add an achievement for some amount of gold the player has. I was thinking two achievements, one for 10k and another one for 50k. As least now I know 10k is surely doable ;)

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I've had some good runs lately - though today's was marred by the fact that I had a super powerful character (knight class) who completely cleared out the catacombs, was in good shape, had both King Salamis AND the Vampire Lord as bodyguards... and then just got demolished by the snowman :(

 >:D

BTW, did you notice that Snowman can block ranged shots (orbs, arrows, etc.) when he raises his cane? I believe that's missing from the description.

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There was no mammoth amulet in the game, or any protection from ice slippage, and I just got caught and gunned down by the ice wizards in the boss fight (who also completely neutralised the two undead with freezing).

Yes, watching when mages prepare to attack and dodging away before they even start to shoot is high priority in those fights. If you're a knight, staying under the igloo and attacking them as soon as they get out is a good tactics, especially if you have allies to deal with the boss.

Anyway, I feel like Snowman is tough, Yeti is appropriate and Santa is too easy currently. I need to do more playtesting.

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Also, what HP do the baby dragons have?

200.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on January 24, 2018, 06:17:43 PM
Yeah, those sound do-able. You'd need a stack of avarice potions plus, say, the foundry, for 50K, so it'd be a case of just loading games until you got the right combo I guess.

And yeah, I noticed that recently when the dratted thing killed me yet again.  :( I need to add it to the guide still.

A few recent observations:
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on January 25, 2018, 05:19:19 PM
Yeah, those sound do-able. You'd need a stack of avarice potions plus, say, the foundry, for 50K, so it'd be a case of just loading games until you got the right combo I guess.

I did a couple of test runs, managed to get over 30k without problems. This is without gambling on the "heads or tails" machine or going into the old catacombs. So, 50k really seems ok, and something higher like 100k seems impossible so I'll make the achievement 50k.

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And yeah, I noticed that recently when the dratted thing killed me yet again.  :( I need to add it to the guide still.

Level 7 is coming soon BTW.

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I'm finding that the rabbit is increasingly a "take this above all others" pet for all character classes.

Well, there's the wheel, rabbit amulet, Super Weight Loss potion and having a mount boar/undead pig/dragon. Undead pig mount should appear in almost every run and you can revive it with both Death and Life staves.

Even if you get a run without any of these, bringing a Stormbringer from a castle is a viable alternative. It has high mana cost, so you might want to save it for tougher rooms. I find that sliding is a problem for melee heroes only (and somewhat for archers), who don't use mana that much anyway, so stacking on some mana potions and using Stormbringer should solve that problem. For magic heroes I simply skip on slime unless I already have high speed, I'm running away and shooting back at enemies all the time without stopping anyway.

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I switched back to playing archer for a bit lately, and I'm finding them quite weak compared to the melee & magic characters currently. I think the new set of items has decreased the relative frequency of things like the crossbow, fletcher's emblem, full metal jacket and other archery-specific items, whilst adding things that will boost your melee (cutlass) or magic (apprentizer)

You're right. The game does change the drop probabilities depending on the class you play, but the sheer amount of non-archery items make it really hard to play pure archery build. I think one of the problems is that archery range (runes and potion) effect is also meant for non-archer classes because archers start with good range anyway.

I will have to add more archery based upgrades (and maybe some potions?) to balance it out.

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Felgin and the Trickster are both particular death to archer-mains too

They can be tricky for mages as well. Since most bosses were harder for melee characters, I added some to balance that out and make it easier for melee but hard for ranged combat.

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change to add a hand knife is good, but in general the regular archer I think is just lacking in power at the moment

Against the bosses - I agree. However, with just a little bit of power up (darkness, money is power, etc.) and a rage upgrade (bull, infinite bow, potions) you can one-shot rooms full of regular enemies other classes cannot.

So, archers are generally better against minions, but have problems against bosses. I'm not sure if I want to change that, it makes choosing a class actually have some strategic consequence. For example, I find that saving the ice arrows for the 4th level boss (instead of using those against bushidos/earlier bosses) is crucial for a successful run when you're an archer.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on January 25, 2018, 08:26:38 PM
I think a small increase in the number of archery items would do the trick - they're not badly underpowered, they just need to more reliably be able to access better equipment. I think the difference between 80 and 100 damage is super important for the archer - once you get to one-shotting, they're very competitive, before that point they're quite weak, especially in more crowded rooms. Possibly 1 or 2 higher damage bows available for later levels, and a slight increase in chances to boost archery?

I guess also I'm mostly playing daily challenges, for which I presume the drop probabilities are fixed for everyone?
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on January 26, 2018, 10:34:20 AM
I guess also I'm mostly playing daily challenges, for which I presume the drop probabilities are fixed for everyone?

It still depends on the class.

However, there are 3x more melee weapons/items than archery ones, so they have 3x more chance to drop. So, without class-based modification the ratio is 3:1. Class based modification works by multiplying the drop chance with the stat percentage, with a special rule that uses (stat percentage - 20%) if the stat is less than 100%, and uses at least 10% multiplier if the above -20% reduction would make it less than 10% (ex. Skeleton Archer magic skill).

So, if you have an archer with 70% melee it would multiply melee items/weapon chance by 50%, it means that ratio now goes down to 2:1. But this still means that melee stuff would drop twice more often.

Magic items/weapons aren't a problem, because archers have low magic stat, so it multiplies all the magic item chances by 0.1.

For the next version I think I'll just increase drop rates for the archery items/weapons by about 40% and then we'll play and see how it works.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on January 27, 2018, 08:43:23 PM
OK, sure :)

And speaking of archers, I finished another bonus skin:
https://exilian.co.uk/forum/index.php?topic=5515
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on January 28, 2018, 11:00:51 AM
And speaking of archers, I finished another bonus skin:
https://exilian.co.uk/forum/index.php?topic=5515

Cool. I'm having trouble finding the download link? Did you include it?
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on January 28, 2018, 11:09:14 AM
(http://bigosaur.com/blog/images/witch-0177-level7.png)

Version 3.0.9 is up with the final, 7th level of the story, the end-game boss and the final cut-scene:

- a new desert level with a new status effect (thirst)
- completed the game story w/ the final boss fight
- some enemies have petrify attacks. Drink the dragonfire potion quickly to remove or use the Life Staff
- 3 new enemy types
- 1 new boss
- 2 new weapons
- 2 new items (both were present in the game, but didn't drop before)
- fixed the drop algorithm for the Magnet item
- bugfixes for ranged AI
- fixed "on sale" name translations for the potion shop
- blood runestones now give you 20 HP on top of +20 health increase
- balanced archery weapons and items drop rate
- allowed special / quest rooms to spawn in casual mode
- fixed a netcode bug where the Book of Ice would freeze enemies who are immune to freezing
- added more detailed decorations to the forest area

The game can now be played from start to end, but this is not the final game and there's still a lot more content to add before we exit early access. The most important ones are the Barbarian hero and 12 quests that you will have to beat to unlock him. And after that, 2-3 more bosses for some variety in the desert level, a bunch of new items and Hard mode. Also, about 30 more achievements are planned now that the game is completely playable from start to finish.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on January 28, 2018, 01:36:21 PM
Completed the desert on my first try :) I feel like the lack of ranged enemies makes it almost surprisingly do-able? I played a wizard with turret staff, and a few upgrades and some sunset scrolls, so I was able to keep fairly far from the enemies (as such I don't actually know what most of their attacks are yet :P ). For the boss fight, I went in and made turrets everywhere (like 10+ of them) and then just ducked and dodged until they did the job for me.

How will you deal with alternate desert bosses in terms of the storyline? I feel like it kind of breaks the plot if it doesn't end with the dragon master being defeated...
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on January 28, 2018, 09:40:01 PM
I was able to keep fairly far from the enemies (as such I don't actually know what most of their attacks are yet :P ).

The most dangerous is the Redhead Assassin who can petrify you in one hit. I deliberately made the other enemies easy so the players can concentrate on dodging the Redheads.

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For the boss fight, I went in and made turrets everywhere (like 10+ of them) and then just ducked and dodged until they did the job for me.

So, you had the mana canteen? I tried a couple of runs, if I manage to survive the ice level, I win. The Dragon Master fight can be pretty epic if you fail to upgrade your weapons. I fought it with a 28-damage-per-orb staff and it spent all my mana with the healing staff and even had to drink beers.

We also tried a couple co-op games and the dragon master fight feels right. I'm eager to see how some less experienced players will fare before tweaking the difficulty.

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How will you deal with alternate desert bosses in terms of the storyline? I feel like it kind of breaks the plot if it doesn't end with the dragon master being defeated...

I plan to have back-to-back boss fights, so there will be another boss fight before the Dragon Master. Current plans include Medusa (with petifying arrows) and an Elephant Rider (big barbarian type of boss who rides a huge elephant in the first phase of the battle and later walks and attacks similar to the executioner).
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on January 29, 2018, 11:53:13 PM
I completed the game as my elf archer, too, now :) I did have to use a dragonfire potion to stop myself getting petrified at one point! I also had a weird small bug at one point on the battlements level where I was cycling through inventory items whilst drinking a potion, and ended up with a key disappearing from my inventory instead of the potion, which was a bit odd.

Also, I got a frontpage announcement done:
https://exilian.co.uk/forum/index.php?topic=5518

And I started updating the guides with info on the new enemies, the stoneheart sword, and the thirst effect :) Out of interest, what do you call the beasts in the desert? I've mentally named them jackal-gorillas, but I suspect you were aiming for something else.

Medusa and the Elephant Rider sound fun! Lots of possibilities for a third option too - a sphinx could be neat & thematically work well, or a scorpion-man like in Assyrian myths would look awesome, or maybe have a Chimera to stick with the Greek myths (one head biting, one head breathing fire, one breathing poison, would make for a fun opponent). Or a sand-wizard who could cast a range of different spells to force you to vary tactics mid-battle somehow.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on January 30, 2018, 09:00:16 AM
I also had a weird small bug at one point on the battlements level where I was cycling through inventory items whilst drinking a potion, and ended up with a key disappearing from my inventory instead of the potion, which was a bit odd.

I need to find a way to replicate this problem. Do you have the "replays" on by any chance?

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Also, I got a frontpage announcement done:
https://exilian.co.uk/forum/index.php?topic=5518

I have seen it via twitter link. Thanks.

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And I started updating the guides with info on the new enemies, the stoneheart sword, and the thirst effect :) Out of interest, what do you call the beasts in the desert?

I haven't decided yet. Internally (in the code), they are called: Redhead, Dual Wielder, Gorilla. None of that sounds very interesting though. Jackal-gorilla could actually be a good choice. If you have suggestions for the others, I'm all ears. Maybe they could be portrayed as mercenaries that the Dragon Master has hired or something like that.

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Or a sand-wizard who could cast a range of different spells to force you to vary tactics mid-battle somehow.

That one sounds really interesting. I will have to think about it. Thanks.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on January 30, 2018, 06:25:50 PM
I have updated the monster manual with the Dragon Master health numbers.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on January 30, 2018, 06:40:39 PM
Thanks! What are the numbers for the three "minor" enemies?

I do have replays on, but only two saved at any time, so I've lost it now - sorry, I should've thought sooner. :(

In the MM I currently have them as "Desert Swordsman", "Jackal-Gorilla", and "Stoneheart Assassin" (to go with the sword name). I'm sure there must be a better choice of name for the swordsman, but I'm not sure what yet.

Also, here's a shot from today's daily challenge - again, the best way to defeat the dragon master proving to be "let some friends do it for me" :)
(https://i.imgur.com/qntfLJd.png)

Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on January 30, 2018, 07:20:11 PM
Thanks! What are the numbers for the three "minor" enemies?

Oh, I completely forgot about them.

Redhead 120
Gorilla 360
Swordsman 150

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I do have replays on, but only two saved at any time, so I've lost it now - sorry, I should've thought sooner. :(

I looked at the code and tried to make it happen, but I could not. It must have been some combination of items / weapons / status effects you had at the time.

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In the MM I currently have them as "Desert Swordsman", "Jackal-Gorilla", and "Stoneheart Assassin" (to go with the sword name). I'm sure there must be a better choice of name for the swordsman, but I'm not sure what yet.

One of the ideas I had was to call him a "Dualist". It was supposed to be a twist on "duelist" since he wields two weapons. Not sure if it sounds good?

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Also, here's a shot from today's daily challenge - again, the best way to defeat the dragon master proving to be "let some friends do it for me" :)

Ah. :)

In one of my runs yesterday I tried to bring in Salamis, defended him from the ice wizards at all costs. But they managed to petrify him just a few rooms from the dragon master fight. I didn't bring the Life Staff (because it was a drop in the forest and I needed inventory space).

So I'm yet to defeat him with some help.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on January 31, 2018, 09:38:02 PM
I'm testing Medusa now. I gave her a bow so she can shoot Medusa arrows. The bow is a new weapon: Composite bow. You can get it from chests, pedestals or buy in shops. Base damage is 50, special ability is +50% damage when riding a mount.

Well, at least one new archery item to balance out the archer class :)

She also has a curved sword for melee attacks, but it is not available to players (at least, not yet).

New version coming by the end of the week.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on January 31, 2018, 09:58:24 PM
I've now completed the game as a close combat character - no mana shenanigans this time, but I had a very highly upgraded retaliator sword which I buffed by standing in front of a dart shooter for ages before going in, so I was doing hundreds of damage per hit. I just soaked up the dragon-breath (I think I had a fire amulet, can't remember) and then once he was on foot it was really pretty easy to keep him on the back foot and keep him disrupted with the sword.

I also got the two achievements I hadn't got yet, so I'm 100% on those again until you add some new ones :)
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on February 01, 2018, 06:52:22 PM
I've now completed the game as a close combat character

I had an interesting one with the archer. Unicorn Horn, upgraded gold bow, a darkness scroll and low health - I did fixed 600 dmg per 1 gold arrow fired. This is the highest consistent damage per shot I have seen in the game so far.

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I also got the two achievements I hadn't got yet, so I'm 100% on those again until you add some new ones :)

Many more to come once I finish the Barbarian character.

But first, to complete the desert bosses.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on February 02, 2018, 02:46:14 PM
I need your help naming this guy. I tweaked the initial "Viking" design and decided to split this guy from the elephant. This one will be a separate boss, and the elephant will be a mount (small variant without much armor) and possibly a huge elephant will be another boss. So, I'm trying to turn him into "pustinjak", which literally means "man from the desert" in Serbian, and translates to Hermit in English. However, I feel like the desert connection is lost with the "hermit". Is it?

(http://bigosaur.com/blog/images/witch-0178-harvester.png)

He walks around, attacks you with his sickle and plants living cacti (cactuses?) into the sand. Once planted, they start to wiggle like tentacles and attack players near them. So, I'm thinking about this guy like some evil desert gardener. ;)

Here are some ideas I have for the name, but cannot really sense which one is good:


Which one do you like the most and do you have some better idea?

Thanks.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Glaurung on February 02, 2018, 03:50:04 PM
So, I'm trying to turn him into "pustinjak", which literally means "man from the desert" in Serbian, and translates to Hermit in English. However, I feel like the desert connection is lost with the "hermit". Is it?
It is, I think. "hermit" implies an individual who's deliberately isolated themselves from people, usually to practise their religion without human distractions - but that could as easily be on an island off the Irish coast as on a pillar in the Syrian desert. I can't immediately think of a generic English word for "desert dweller", though that might just be my erratic memory letting me down.

Here are some ideas I have for the name, but cannot really sense which one is good:

  • Son of the Desert
  • Cactus Harvester
  • Desert Reaper
  • Desert Gardener

Which one do you like the most and do you have some better idea?
I don't have any better ideas; of your suggestions, I'd go for "Desert Reaper" - anyone with a scythe like that has got to be a reaper. If he actually looks after cactuses, then maybe "Cactus Reaper"?
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on February 02, 2018, 09:25:51 PM
Yeah - I do associate hermits with deserts, but that's because I'm a historian and associate them heavily with early Christian hermits who were mainly living in Syria/Egypt. It's definitely got a heavy religious connotation.

I think "gardener" and "harvester" sound quite peaceful... I wonder about "Thorn Reaper" if cacti are his thing?

Also, the red beard/hair interests me - I associate red hair very much with northern Europe and pale skin aka people who would burn easily in a desert, so that seems odd to me, I dunno. Would a darker shade be possible?
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on February 02, 2018, 10:00:23 PM
I don't have any better ideas; of your suggestions, I'd go for "Desert Reaper" - anyone with a scythe like that has got to be a reaper. If he actually looks after cactuses, then maybe "Cactus Reaper"?

That's also a good idea.

I think "gardener" and "harvester" sound quite peaceful... I wonder about "Thorn Reaper" if cacti are his thing?

Well, there's this green plant resembling a tentacle with thorns that he plants to attack the players. It takes some imagination to call it a cactus, so I guess "Thorn Reaper" could be good in that sense. But I somehow like the sound of "Cactus Reaper" better.

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Also, the red beard/hair interests me - I associate red hair very much with northern Europe and pale skin aka people who would burn easily in a desert, so that seems odd to me, I dunno.

This character graphics was actually planned for the Ice level, but I have so many ice units already, so I moved him to the "desert" section. Elephants definitely belong in the desert.

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Would a darker shade be possible?

Possibly, but I just completed all the animations, imported it into the game and hooked up the AI, so I'm not going back to the layered graphics to fix it (where it would be easy) because it would mean re-doing most of today's work.

I will try playing with color manipulation on the final .png texture atlas to see if I can change it without having to fiddle with any pixels manually.

Although, the red hair looks pretty good with the desert background.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on February 02, 2018, 10:06:30 PM
Also, the red beard/hair interests me - I associate red hair very much with northern Europe and pale skin aka people who would burn easily in a desert, so that seems odd to me, I dunno. Would a darker shade be possible?

BTW, at one point I had an idea of calling him a "Desert Vandal". Since Vandals came from northern parts of Europe and managed to get all the way to the North Africa it looked like a good idea. I even searched for names for Vandal kings for some inspiration, but none felt good. And the word "Vandal" has different modern connotations, so I gave up. (internally in C++ code, the class that handles all the animation/AI is called "Vandal")
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on February 03, 2018, 12:53:23 PM
Dw, the red hair does look fine and I can always play with the pngs myself if it annoys me at all :p

I had another win with a combat character today - sword with plenty of upgrades, good stats w/barbarian's friend & berserker potions, and some sunset scrolls. Plus I had the mana canteen and the sceptre so actually once the dragon was gone I just swamped the dragon master with minions.

Does the gamble scroll work on the dragon master, and can it summon the dragon master to replace other bosses? I kind of feel like you shouldn't be able to gamble him away, since he's the final boss...

Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on February 03, 2018, 05:11:22 PM
Does the gamble scroll work on the dragon master

Yes. Only, I need to check if he drops the Tar of Akhal (because you cannot finish the game otherwise)

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Can it summon the dragon master to replace other bosses?

No.

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I kind of feel like you shouldn't be able to gamble him away, since he's the final boss...

I though about that, but... there will be more achievements in the game and stuff to unlock. Most notably the Barbarian hero and Hard mode. Some of these will be tied to killing the Dragon Master, so if you gamble or barrelize him, you wouldn't get the achievement.


BTW, the new version with Medusa and Reaper is up.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on February 03, 2018, 06:54:53 PM
I had a quick run as the chanter (unusually quick since I used the quick-jump to the catacombs and somehow survived), and beat the medusas... though I had an elven shield & medusa amulet so I was basically perfectly kitted out to beat them!
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on February 03, 2018, 11:25:11 PM
I had a quick run as the chanter (unusually quick since I used the quick-jump to the catacombs and somehow survived), and beat the medusas... though I had an elven shield & medusa amulet so I was basically perfectly kitted out to beat them!

Awesome. There will be an achievement for that (took the shortcut and won the game), so now I know it's actually doable ;)
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on February 04, 2018, 11:50:25 AM
In today's daily challenge, I checked that "gamble" definitely works on the dragon master fine :) Had the medusas again, one of them shot me but again I had the amulet... I suspect they'd be really difficult bosses without it, but we'll see I guess!
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on February 04, 2018, 12:42:20 PM
In today's daily challenge, I checked that "gamble" definitely works on the dragon master fine :) Had the medusas again, one of them shot me but again I had the amulet... I suspect they'd be really difficult bosses without it, but we'll see I guess!

I tried the Skeleton run (not daily challenge, just a regular run). No problems, used some duplicate scrolls to make 7 darkness scrolls and had 250+ damage per shot for the last two levels. With the bull pet I was able to one-shot many rooms. It felt almost too easy.

I'm starting to think that there would always be some combination of items/weapons available that will make the game easy to beat in the end. Perhaps I should leave it as it is, but address this in the Hard mode: limit powerful scrolls to 1 per run, have Mana Canteen only show up behind some tough challenge like the old catacombs, etc.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on February 05, 2018, 08:03:51 PM
(https://bigosaur.com/blog/images/witch-0179-elephant.png)

Version 3.1.4 is online with the 4th desert boss: The War Elephant. This is an important milestone, because all the bosses I planned for the first full game release are now in the game.

The initial plan was actually 20 or 21 boss, but as the game has been developed many new ideas came and now we have 24. I do have some ideas for 4-5 more bosses, but those will come after Early Access.

Here's a short roadmap for the rest of Early Access development:

- Barbarian Hero with some special mechanics (faster rage buildup, higher mana cost, combo hit damage bonus)
- 12 special challenge modes to unlock the barbarian
- Hard mode
- 45 more achievements already planned "on paper", maybe more
- there might be some additional pets and items/weapons along the way
- a new trailer for the game

I plan to exit Early Access in May this year if all goes as planned.

There are also some ideas that might be implemented before we exit EA, but most probably afterwards:

- more mounts: baby elephant, horse, deer, green baby dragon (spit poison)
- additional quests and special rooms
- more weapons and items
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on February 06, 2018, 03:31:10 PM
I'm preparing stuff for the Barbarian. To unlock that hero, you will have to complete 12 challenges, which basically means beating the game with a special set of rules. For example, one challenge makes the game start in the Castle instead of the Forest.

One of the challenges creates a straight path (similar to Casual mode) with every room having a single type of enemy. This is done once for every enemy type. For example, in the forest you fight with Goblin Berserkers in the first room, then Goblin Shamans in the second room, then Goblin Blaggards in the third room, etc. At the end of the level you fight all the bosses back-to-back. For example, there will be three boss rooms in the forest: Ogre Mama, Golem, Cyclops and then you go to the second level...

I cannot decide what name to give to this challenge. My ideas include "Collection", "Theme park" and "Compendium". Which one you think is the best?

Thanks.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on February 09, 2018, 11:54:00 PM
I quite like "Compendium". I'd also consider "Bestiary" which I think works quite well for a mode where you get all the different monster/enemy types?
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on February 10, 2018, 11:46:37 AM
I quite like "Compendium". I'd also consider "Bestiary" which I think works quite well for a mode where you get all the different monster/enemy types?

Thanks.

I know of use of Bestiary in RPG (I even own one of the D&D books of such title), but it somehow feels like it's more about "non-human" creatures to me? And there are many human enemies in the game. I think I will stick to Compendium then.

I finished programming for all the 12 challenges a few hours ago, but now I need to do A LOT of playtesting. It's hard to assess if all the challenges are fair beatable - many are not really "fair"  ;D I don't want the players to beat them all on the first try, but I also don't want to make it impossible because it unlocks a playable character, so it isn't optional.

So, I'm not sure when this new version will be available. I still need to add Steam achievements for every challenge and I need to make the Barbarian character, in case someone is really good and manages to beat all the challenges quickly. I will probably release the challenges into "beta testing" branch only. And then the whole package together when the barbarian is in.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on February 10, 2018, 05:22:00 PM
Let me know when they're up on the beta testing branch and I'll take a look :)
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on February 10, 2018, 11:24:43 PM
Let me know when they're up on the beta testing branch and I'll take a look :)

(https://bigosaur.com/blog/images/witch-0180-challenges.png)

It's online now. Version 3.1.5.

The Steam achievements are uploaded, so if you manage to beat some of the challenges it will be unlocked. Once I add the barbarian character, he should be playable immediately, you won't have to unlock the challenges again.

I have played a bit today with varying success. No surprise as these are meant to be the most difficult part of the game (so far).

I managed to beat "One shot", "Drink all potions", and "No backtracking". I feel like those are pretty well balanced. "One shot" gets really easy if you manage to get some Blood Runestones early on. It took me least tries to beat it.

I managed to get to the Dragon Master boss fight while playing "Poison". And IIRC I reached the Ice Level boss fights with the "King" and "Compendium" challenge.

On others, I would usually die on the Dungeon boss fight or somewhere in the catacombs. Maybe it's the problem that I played too many different challenges today, so I sometimes got mixed up on the rules and made tactical mistakes like drinking wrong potions or using wrong items.

This version will be in beta for a week or two until I finish the animations and programming for the Barbarian character.

I'm looking forward to see how will you fare. BTW, if you notice any bad wording/grammar in the challenge descriptions, please let me know.

Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on February 11, 2018, 11:46:19 AM
After playing the "Master Blaster" challenge a couple of times today, I'm starting to think that the player should start with Explosion Immunity (a new status effect I plan to add). I find that I often get killed by my own bombs, esp. if I get some of the upgrades that make you launch more bombs.

I would be interested in your thoughts on this as well.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on February 11, 2018, 10:39:33 PM
I've now tried and failed at all 12 challenges - I suspect they're all do-able, but they'll all take a lot of runs/practice to complete I think. The furthest I got was in "trolling" where I got killed by the elephant boss. I think for several of them it's going to be very largely luck - "I am the King" pretty much requires you to get the mana canteen early for example - and you often need a good deal of luck with bosses. Stomp attacks seem to be super important in IatK and the Bomb-throwing one, but unless you're carrying a voodoo doll everywhere (and you rarely have the inv space) then the boss battles are horrible to deal with unless they're human-size bosses.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on February 12, 2018, 12:05:23 AM
Quote
I've now tried and failed at all 12 challenges

That was my first impression as well. So, it isn't too easy, which is good. When I made them and started testing I felt like it was impossible.

Quote
I suspect they're all do-able, but they'll all take a lot of runs/practice to complete I think

Now that I played a lot more (approx. 40 runs so far I think), I feel like they are beatable, just require much more tactics and thinking than the regular game (because you have less options than before, and a single missed item/scroll could make a difference between win and loss). Also, choosing a right hero could make a huge difference. And I find that I have to pick different weapons/items to bring to the next level compared to the regular game.

Stomp attacks seem to be super important in IatK and the Bomb-throwing one, but unless you're carrying a voodoo doll everywhere (and you rarely have the inv space) then the boss battles are horrible to deal with unless they're human-size bosses.

I discovered today that it's much easier if you play as a Druid. Just poison the bomb stick/imperial scepter, hit the boss once and watch his HP drain. Now your goal is to maximize the Magic skill to have as strongest poison effect as possible (and maybe Duplicate some Cheese Wedges if possible).

As for the inventory space problem, you can carry a voodoo doll for the Hornet Queen and leave it afterwards, or just repeat the run if you're unlucky to meet her without the doll. You could play as an archer (ditch the bow and arrows for extra inventory space), but I feel like poison is too important and the Snake Staff is the only poison weapon whose poison effect scales with hero skill.

I managed to beat the "Master Blaster" one by getting a bunch of "Money is Power" potions and deliberately allowing a Skeleton Mage to give me Avarice x10 so I can stack up a lot of coins and make the poison super powerful. No need for mana canteen. The only real problem was the Dragon Master because of poison immunity, but by the time I got to him I had enough upgrades to survive. One of the important things was "Drop bombs when hit". I had a lot of HP (around 230) so I just stood in front of his dragon and let him spit fire at me while the dragon master cast his "spear" spell. But even without that, I found a lot of runestones to upgrade the stick and my Melee skill was so powerful, I dealt about 100 damage per hit with that stupid bomb stick.

In a couple of other runs I got the "Bomberman" potion, which makes you throw more bombs. With the Ice Bomb (and optionally Icicle) it makes the whole run almost trivial as you can keep dropping bombs and freeze everything to death. The only problem are the ice-resistant enemies. I usually skip the Ice boss fight with Escape scroll or use Gamble. Of course, if you have poison, it becomes much easier.

I need to test IatK more, perhaps it would really be difficult without Mana Canteen. I have only played it once or twice, so I'm still not sure about that one.

BTW, I managed to reach the Desert boss fight with the "Survival" one. Had Gold Diet (so no problem with hunger) and just stacked potions all the time. I did have to play the whole game with Hypochondria though as I got it early and I didn't want to drink the Dragonfire because it would remove Gold Diet. This was my first time actually fighting the War Elephant in the game (beside testing while development), so he managed to surprise me with his wide ranged attack as I forgot about it  :o .
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on February 12, 2018, 12:37:13 AM
I finally just beat One Shot :) I think it's probably the easiest of them, as long as you find some blood runestones then it actually ends up being slightly easier than the regular game in some ways (and clearing out the catacombs on one-shot is pretty fun). 11 of them to go...

EDIT: Also now done Drink All Potions with my elf archer. I didn't have too awful a set of potions (bloodlust, appetite, clairvoyance, tracker delusion, hiccup, barbarian's friend, tremor, telepathy) so it was OK once I got the hang of the tactics - the desert was horrible and I had to walk into the dragon master fight with zero health... but I was also walking in with a handy gamble scroll, a seriously well runed up golden bow and a bunch of ice arrows, and once the dragon master had been transformed into a hornet then things were rather simpler :) I gambled the ice boss fight and the first desert boss as well, so I got to fight Salamis instead of the elephant and the Butcher instead of the Yeti Elder - in fact, I didn't do much fighting the Butcher, I dodged around and let the ice wizards get on with the job...
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on February 12, 2018, 07:59:42 PM
in fact, I didn't do much fighting the Butcher, I dodged around and let the ice wizards get on with the job...

 8)

Reminds me of one of my recent runs where I used Confusion in the Ringleader fight and one of his minions stun-locked him and just clubbed him to death (he kept trying to drink the health potion, so he didn't move away) while I was evading other enemies.

I'm starting to think that RNG isn't really that important because there are so many items and weapons that you would always get something useful to win.

Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on February 13, 2018, 11:34:33 PM
I've been trying to practice/work on compendium, with very little success. A few thoughts:
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on February 14, 2018, 10:54:33 AM
A room with 15 or so ice wizards is really unpleasant/jarring to play with, the only thing you can do is run around with massive screen shake until they kill each other off, and you just have to be staring at a constantly juddering, rattling screen for ages running around waiting for that to happen... it pretty much gave me a headache doing it.

I thought it was funny. Perhaps I will add a setting to reduce screen shake or something like that.

Quote
I've only ever got as far as the dungeon level, because the fights there, especially the Trickster and Felgin, usually rely on a certain amount of attrition, which you just can't do easily with the way the game is at the moment - there are too few "regular" rooms where you can get small health potions etc.

Maybe it needs rebalancing. Also, the Trolling challenge seems to be fine until you run into a room with 7-8 Bushidos in the Desert level. It think I might need to tweak that one too. Maybe adding more treasure rooms / shops in between the boss fights could give the player more weapon/scroll choices to help beating or escaping those fights. I will playtest both of these challenges a little bit more before I decide what exactly to do.

Thanks.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on February 14, 2018, 12:53:55 PM
I dunno, it just made my eyes/head hurt personally. It would be kind of amusing for a few seconds, but keeping the running up for over half a minute just starts really grating on my eyes.

I think in Compendium, the shops seem to sell too many weapons and too few potions/scrolls, possibly.

EDIT: Overdrive completed. Got bare bones amulet in the first level, had the retort & money is power and somehow survived long enough to get back up to health. By the end of it I was running with a well upgraded mjolnir and a massive boost from money is power, plus a critical hit chance of like 85%, plus the dwarven spinner. I think I managed to hit 1314 damage in a single regular close-combat hit by the end of the game.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on February 14, 2018, 08:22:53 PM
I think I managed to hit 1314 damage in a single regular close-combat hit by the end of the game.

 :o  :o  :o

BTW, I found a good tactics for Compendium. Start with a Knight, get a voodoo doll and ice sword (hammer is also ok until you find the sword). Just voodoo every boss, drop the doll and then keep hitting it. All the minions are coming from the right, so you can avoid their projectiles vertically until they reach the doll and then hit them and the doll at the same time.

So, it's good for bosses. There are some tough minion rooms (Orcs and Skeleton Mages are giving me some problems) so you need to use the remaining slots to help you there; and I'm still not sure about the optimal tactics for the ice level, but the Dungeon is no longer a problem.

Lack of healing potions is still noticeable. I did get the Life staff in one run, but forgot to use it before I died :( because it wasn't a boss room.

Maybe the bosses should drop small HP potions more often in this mode. I need to test more.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on February 14, 2018, 11:01:48 PM
Head Start completed. It was a completely mad run, I was a knight and had barely better than base level stats, my pig died quickly, the only immunity I had was poison, and I hit a gold diet potion early so I couldn't even buy any good upgrades... I managed to do it with a combo of retaliator sword + stack of gold diet potions (and high bloodlust). On the last level I had one room where I blew a door open and kept one regular swordsman alive so I could go back in and get stabbed by him a few times to boost the retaliator back up. I had a horse pet, so sweep-and-stomp tactics worked on most regular rooms, then I left plenty of gold on the ground saved up for boss fight prep. Still only just worked, I got set on fire by the dragon master with very little health left (and that after nearly dying in the catacomb boss fight, too), but a win is a win...

And yeah, that's a good point, I need to get better at using dolls in several of these. It took me several runs to work out that you basically need to use the bomb in compendium to bypass the shaman room then come back when you've no longer got all the dolls pinned on you.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on February 15, 2018, 09:47:33 AM
kept one regular swordsman alive so I could go back in and get stabbed by him a few times to boost the retaliator back up

That's a really cool idea, I never thought about something like that.

Quote
And yeah, that's a good point, I need to get better at using dolls in several of these. It took me several runs to work out that you basically need to use the bomb in compendium to bypass the shaman room

Are you playing version 3.1.6? I reduced the number of Shamans to 4, so you can pick up all the dolls. When you pick up the first one, mark one of them and drop it back to the ground. And the other 3 can fit into your inventory. This can be hard to pull off quickly, so when I see shamans, I immediately drop everything from my inventory, so I don't have to switch the active item while picking up the dolls.

I do use the "bomb the door" tactics with orcs and skeleton mages when possible.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on February 15, 2018, 10:42:33 AM
I just find that even with only 4 shamans, I end up running more of a risk than I need/want to, I'm not sharp enough on the controls to always rely on picking up the dolls at the perfect moment and it only takes one miss to be deadly.

EDIT: "Mushroooms" completed. Started as an archer, found some extra mushrooms and, awesomely, the Book of Life on L1, and with careful rationing and use of health potions worked my way through the first few levels quite slowly. Didn't find an improved bow but did get the bird so I was doing OK stats-wise, and I was rushing several rooms at a time with bear-in-a-barrel to refill rage attacks. In the castle level I found the mana canteen, and I had a bunch of pets including the lizard... so I gamble-scrolled the throne room, just about made it out alive, and then essentially switched tactics completely: I'd had a few apprentizer potions so I was on +5% at that point, with a big, big stack of mana. Combine that with the clockwork staff and I basically just swamped most of the dungeon rooms with soldiers (boss fight included - it was Felgin and he just got totally swamped with them). For the rest of the game I just continued boosting my magic (slowly, so I always had a decent amount of reserve mana) until I was on somewhere in the 1000% region by the end. I had a LOT of soldiers, too - the game started glitching several times because there were too many of them on screen, especially in the Yeti and Elephant boss fights where the game really slowed to a crawl. I found the staff of the dead too so I had King Salamis accompanying me until he got petrified in the desert. I find it weird that petrified ally troops still follow you door to door rather than staying where you left them. The last fight was fairly tough, but I still had 15 mushrooms with me so I just plugged away with the staff of the dead (my troops got killed pretty fast), got the dragon down (though I lost my pig about that point too), and then managed to soak up the spear attacks from the Dragon Master whilst plugging away doing about 100 damage per orb with the staff. Victory :)
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on February 15, 2018, 09:53:28 PM
I was on somewhere in the 1000% region by the end

I' thinking about having some achievement for that. It's really rare and cool when you get that much.

Quote
I had a LOT of soldiers, too - the game started glitching several times because there were too many of them on screen

Yes, depending on the hardware you have the game can slow down with too many units on the screen. I have already done some optimization in the game engine, but I will look into it again.

Quote
King Salamis accompanying me until he got petrified in the desert. I find it weird that petrified ally troops still follow you door to door rather than staying where you left them.

This is a bug. I found where the problem is and will fix it in the next version.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on February 16, 2018, 01:17:52 PM
I uploaded a new version. It has the bug fix for the petrified minions following you into other rooms. And I also added some improvements for situations where you have many units on the screen (still not perfect, but it works faster than before).

As for the gameplay, the only change I made is giving the players 30 inventory slots in Compendium. This changes the game a lot, because you can bring different weapons, scrolls, potions with you and use them later (this means you can also bring some silver coins and skip some though fights). On my second test run I managed to reach the 3rd boss fight of the Ice level and died there because I only had 20 health because I accidentally picked up the Bare Bones amulet during the 2nd boss fight (at one point I had only 1 HP left. Since I used Gamble there were some boss drops on the floor: a blood rune and the bare bones amulet, right next to each other. As I was sliding on ice and evading a bunch of enemies I missed the rune and picked up the amulet instead  >:(

I will probably need a couple more tries, but I feel like Compendium should be doable with this change.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on February 17, 2018, 01:40:43 PM
I will probably need a couple more tries, but I feel like Compendium should be doable with this change.

After 6-7 runs I managed to reach the Dragon Master battle. Interesting enough, I didn't use ice weapons at all, just a heavily upgraded Rogue Sword and a Voodoo doll. I killed the King to get some minions to help me / draw attention away while I would smack the doll during boss fights. I was really close to knocking down the Dragon Master off his mount which would have probably meant a victory, but I was too eager to do that and got killed in a very stupid way. So, Compendium is definitely winnable, it's just a matter of staying focused.

I tried IatK a couple times. Managed to get into the desert but got petrified with no way to remove it. I did have a solid 20+ guard army at one point during the ice level, but lost them all in the ice level boss fight. I had a Gamble scroll, but wanted to save it for the Dragon Master. Still, I had to use it when I lost all the troops. So I lost both the scroll and the army which turned out the be the problem later. Lesson learned, I guess. The first few runs I played as the Druid because of poison, but this last run I played as a Knight. With some runestones and potions, the scepter can become a decent melee weapon as well. And the fact that it's always available (unlike poison and guard army for which you need mana all the time) can make a huge difference.

BTW, I found an interesting bug, which I think you discovered before but wasn't aware of it. During the boss fights, the minion "building" keeps spawning units as long as there's a boss unit on the screen. So, if you bring Salamis or the Vampire Lord with you, the ice level igloo would keep spawning mages until your undead servant is dead - even if you kill the ice boss. I will fix this, so that "boss" units under player's command don't count when spawning is checked.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on February 17, 2018, 11:38:16 PM
Yeah, I agree that Compendium will now be do-able, will take a while though. Same with most of the remaining ones, just need to get the right run and be focussed enough. I doubt I'll do much more on them for a bit now, though, I'm really tired at the moment and struggling to focus on anything...

I did try some 2-player runs yesterday, Caradilis (who you might have seen around the forum) came over and she has a controller and I played with keyboard as usual... we managed to win the game on run #5, which is good going given she'd never played before. There was a LOT of carefully timed use of the life staff and having to finish battles literally as the timer ran out, as I was often giving up extra health to keep her character going, and I gamble-scrolled both the last two boss fights, but it was fun. :)
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on February 18, 2018, 11:45:45 AM
Yeah, I agree that Compendium will now be do-able, will take a while though. Same with most of the remaining ones, just need to get the right run and be focussed enough. I doubt I'll do much more on them for a bit now, though, I'm really tired at the moment and struggling to focus on anything...

I noticed this problem as well. Dumping 12 runs on the player at once makes it really hard to focus on any run in particular. I have completed 6 of 12 by now, but have the same problem of feeling exhausted.

Quote
I did try some 2-player runs yesterday, Caradilis (who you might have seen around the forum) came over and she has a controller and I played with keyboard as usual... we managed to win the game on run #5, which is good going given she'd never played before. There was a LOT of carefully timed use of the life staff and having to finish battles literally as the timer ran out, as I was often giving up extra health to keep her character going, and I gamble-scrolled both the last two boss fights, but it was fun. :)

Cool. Did one of you play the Sorceress? It's much easier with beginner players because they can eat food to heal all the time.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on February 18, 2018, 12:27:51 PM
The successful run was druid + knight - as she wanted to play knight, we did try a run with me as the sorceress, which was OK for a bit but my sorceress ended up low on hitting power and I was having to try and finish battles fast too often for me to use a pure support character.

I can now confirm that I Am The King is do-able though, completed it with my owlbear knight just now - which puts me likewise on 6 of 12 done (IatK,Mushrooms, Head Start, Drink All Potions, Overdrive, and One Shot are my set). :) I had a flaming sword with decent upgrades and good stomp damage, plus absolutely massive max health (300 by the desert level), so I was able to do sweep + stomps opening most battles. Ice level was really difficult as I didn't have freeze immunity, I once went down to like 20 health in that, but just about survived. I gambled the ice boss battle (twice) + gambling both desert bosses. Turned the elephant into Ogre Mama which was definitely an improvement!

Query - why are ice level characters treated as being the same "team" as castle level characters? This is apparent whenever you use gamble scrolls, but it's never really explained.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on February 18, 2018, 12:59:13 PM
Query - why are ice level characters treated as being the same "team" as castle level characters? This is apparent whenever you use gamble scrolls, but it's never really explained.

A lot of the game's code relies on enemies only having two factions (guards and monsters). I have never bothered to develop that in more detail as it didn't seem too important. So, goblins, thieves and skeletons are "monsters" and all the others are "guards". The bosses use the same faction as the units on their floor. It didn't work like that initially, for example, the Red Dragon used to be a "monster". But I found that the dragon boss fight was too easy if the dragon was attacking the guards on purpose (instead of just burning them by accident like it does now). As I kept adding new stuff I just picked a faction almost randomly. I guess I might refactor the code at one point to have separate factions, but it will need a lot of testing as the code assuming 2-faction-only possibility is all over the place.

Or maybe I should invent some story element to explain it  ;D
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on February 18, 2018, 01:08:26 PM
Ah, OK. I might add that to the notes for the gamble scroll next time I update the guides. It's especially important if you gamble on the ice level, because the ice wizards will often finish off any monster-aligned boss pretty swiftly but will of course keep acting as backup for any guard-aligned one.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on February 18, 2018, 01:20:47 PM
Ah, OK. I might add that to the notes for the gamble scroll next time I update the guides.

If you do, maybe using "guards" and "monsters" for faction names is not the best idea. Perhaps "good" (for guards) vs "evil" (for monsters) or "red" vs "blue" or something else could be a better choice.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on February 18, 2018, 02:10:34 PM
Well, I don't need to name them at all - I can just say that desert, castle, and ice monsters & characters form one team and forest, dungeon and catacombs ones form the other.

EDIT: Compendium complete, knight with mjolnir, got plenty of runestones on it + dwarven spinner. I also had a deadwood bow which I used often - the whole elephant boss fight I just completed with a massive stack of ice arrows I'd built up. The big inventory definitely makes it a vastly more do-able challenge.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on February 18, 2018, 06:30:20 PM
EDIT: Compendium complete, knight with mjolnir, got plenty of runestones on it + dwarven spinner. I also had a deadwood bow which I used often - the whole elephant boss fight I just completed with a massive stack of ice arrows I'd built up. The big inventory definitely makes it a vastly more do-able challenge.

Awesome. I noticed that it almost eliminates the backtracking (except when you go back to blast some rocks), which was pretty boring because the rooms were linear.

I think the challenges are all good now, no more tweaking needed. I'm going back to working on the Barbarian animations now.

BTW, did you try the "Magic Casters" one? I managed to get to the desert level. My last run I had Gold Diet + Avarice + Appetite + Magnet and some 200 HP which made me felt indestructible. However I made a mistake of picking up the "dying enemies drop bombs" item and some of them just dropped bombs on the voodoo dolls I was marked with :( (and I couldn't pick up the dolls because of Avarice).
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on February 19, 2018, 06:57:54 PM
My best run on magic casters I likewise got to the desert level with a super good swordsman (OK, swords-owlbear, but same difference). Then I managed to hit a voodoo doll I was marked with for about 150 damage and killed myself :( I do often die on first level of magic casters, though - some runs just have too many rooms with 4 or occasionally even 6 shamans on the first level.

On the plus side, slowly checking them off the list: trolling is now completed. I had an archer, got a golden bow and some runestones in the forest, and also managed to get decent speedboosts so I was at maybe speed 10 or 11 by the end and used a couple of sunset scrolls so I was one-shotting the bushidos - I think high speed on a caster or archer is the way to win trolling in general, the most important thing is to be able to outpace your enemies (by desert level you need high damage too of course, and some skill not to get piled by the bushidos!) That leaves four to go: No Backtracking, Master Blaster, Survival, and Magic Casters. I think that's about the difficulty order, too - survival is one of the toughest, I've tried it a few times but I think it needs gold diet potions to make it do-able (or maybe finding a strawberry staff). Magic Casters I think will also be very hard, I've got to desert level on it before but that's a rare exception.

EDIT: Also, I think I found a bug with voodoo dolls. I had a room (we'll call it room A) where I got doll-tagged, left it via a bomb, did a couple of other rooms so I should have been untagged, opened the locked room and got tagged with a doll in there by a shaman I couldn't reach, so I left. Then I returned to Room A (my only option)... and got killed with a voodoo doll in there. :(
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on February 19, 2018, 09:28:27 PM
EDIT: Also, I think I found a bug with voodoo dolls. I had a room (we'll call it room A) where I got doll-tagged, left it via a bomb, did a couple of other rooms so I should have been untagged, opened the locked room and got tagged with a doll in there by a shaman I couldn't reach, so I left. Then I returned to Room A (my only option)... and got killed with a voodoo doll in there. :(

The way voodoo dolls work internally is a very complicated mess. I tried to fix it a couple times, but it turned out to be difficult to pull off, esp. in networked games. So, yes, I'm aware that it is weird.

Anyway, under the current rules, once a voodoo doll targets you, you will remain targeted forever and the link can only be removed if you use the same doll to re-target it to someone else. However, you won't receive any damage if the voodoo effect has expired for your character. So, if someone gives you the voodoo effect again, all the dolls that are still targeting you from before can now hurt you.

Beside this, there are other unexpected behaviors. For example, if you get marked by a doll, bring it into the next battle and get marked again there, you can use the doll from your inventory to remove the voodoo effect from your character because the doll still links to you and your voodoo effect says "1 active doll" at that moment.

I think I would have to delete all the code for this and rewrite it from scratch to make it work properly. But before that, I would need to clearly define what are the rules. Perhaps when voodoo effect expires all the related dolls should unlink from the target. I believe I even tried this and it worked fine in local games, but there were problems in networked games, esp. if one player leaves the room, while the battle is still going on in the other rooms where the dolls are.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on February 19, 2018, 11:21:06 PM
I reached the desert again in magic casters with an archer who could one-shot any of them, then in the second room there I dealt with a goblin shaman then got frozen by a skeleton wizard and shot to death by three crystal wizards before I could move :( I really can't see how to defend successfully against everything in the desert level of that quest, unless you happen to have a really good set of immunities so you can mostly ignore the skeleton wizard curses - you can't take them out particularly quickly, because as a close combat character you'll probably hit a doll targeted on you and as a ranged character you need to be dodging the necromancers etc. I guess it may just take me making enough runs until I get lucky and get fire, poison and ice immune on the same run.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on February 20, 2018, 07:38:55 AM
I reached the desert again in magic casters with an archer who could one-shot any of them, then in the second room there I dealt with a goblin shaman then got frozen by a skeleton wizard and shot to death by three crystal wizards before I could move :( I really can't see how to defend successfully against everything in the desert level of that quest, unless you happen to have a really good set of immunities so you can mostly ignore the skeleton wizard curses - you can't take them out particularly quickly, because as a close combat character you'll probably hit a doll targeted on you and as a ranged character you need to be dodging the necromancers etc. I guess it may just take me making enough runs until I get lucky and get fire, poison and ice immune on the same run.

I see a couple possible solutions to this:

1. have random mages, but one mage type per room
2. limit the number of mages you can get in one room
3. ensure that ice immunity is available some way. The biggest problem I see is when the skeleton mages freeze you so you cannot move

I will playtest some more to see what would be the best approach.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on February 20, 2018, 11:03:06 AM
I'm wondering if there is a tactical solution, but what you actually need is a really high damage mage with many exploding or bouncing orbs. I've not managed to get a wizard past the forest level yet - the 4+ shaman rooms always kill me - but I feel like a mage of that type could be the answer to damage all the wizards in a room fast enough. There are no shielded enemies after all.  The trouble is that my wizards  die on level one so often that it's hard to test this out!

EDIT: Done it. Can confirm, this is the correct approach, I beat the magic casters challenge as a high damage pyromancer. So many small mana potions get dropped that you can leverage that to have fire on every room, and so few enemies are immune to it that it's the best strategy. On the first level I didn't even do the usual thing of waiting and picking up dolls, just ran round and burned all the shamans so fast they couldn't react. I completed about 5 rooms on the last level, then skipped a lot of it using a silver shilling once I found a shop - peace-scrolled the room before the bosses, beat the medusas (I had an elven shield so that was fairly simple) and gambled the dragon master (into an ogre mama, helpfully!) So it's do-able even in its current form with an effective wizard character and smart tactics - if anything the key problem is getting past the first level :)

That leaves me survival (which I think may mainly be a case of reloading until I get gold diet potions), no backtracking (which I don't think should be too bad, but that's partly why I'm saving it to do last), and Master Blaster (which I guess must be do-able with the right set of support gear, I just really hate that bomb stick by this point).
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on February 20, 2018, 04:08:51 PM
I'm wondering if there is a tactical solution, but what you actually need is a really high damage mage with many exploding or bouncing orbs. I've not managed to get a wizard past the forest level yet - the 4+ shaman rooms always kill me - but I feel like a mage of that type could be the answer to damage all the wizards in a room fast enough. There are no shielded enemies after all.  The trouble is that my wizards  die on level one so often that it's hard to test this out!

I was just about to say that getting past the forest was no problem for me. Use the first doll they drop to mark one of them, and then pick up the rest. Once they drop the Meteor staff, pick it up and use it against them. With the Meteor staff it's easy to beat the shamans because they stop to cast spells.

But I didn't even consider playing with the Pyromancer because of low starting health. Great approach.

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I had an elven shield so that was fairly simple

That one is starting to be the most important item in my runs  :)

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That leaves me survival (which I think may mainly be a case of reloading until I get gold diet potions)

I managed to get to the desert several times without it. Hunger is really slow effect, it takes really long to lose much HP. Since you're drinking potions for thirst anyway, you will often drink small HP potions which would heal you back to full. The main problem is having some potion ready to drink after every battle. BTW, beer removes both hunger and thirst. I used it before the boss fights.

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Master Blaster (which I guess must be do-able with the right set of support gear, I just really hate that bomb stick by this point

It's doable. Best runs I had with Druid (super high poison damage) and also Knight because the Blacksmith runestones drop more often (I disabled runes that cannot be used, because you cannot switch the main weapon). In one of the runs I had 120 or so melee damage per hit with the stick.

If you get the Bomberman potion, then it's super fun. Just run around and drop bombs all over the place. Also "enemies drop bombs", "drop bombs when hit" and "freezing bombs" are really, really useful because you are immune to explosions.

Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on February 21, 2018, 12:50:23 AM
Yeah, I can see how to do all the others, I think it's just getting pretty grinding working through the different frustrations of each challenge. Like, they're a good "ultimate test of skill", but I don't think I'll be re-playing many (probably any) of them once I've done them.

I have just completed Survival - chanter, using the turret staff, got the retort early so that was a really important part of it, and I had a mana canteen so I had turrets available in all the last 3 boss fights. I think the closest I came to dying was fighting the butcher on the dungeon level - I was really running low on health and options then. I think I was only one bomb away from being killed by crazy santa, too, and I didn't have secure footing or ice immunity. I don't think I had healing available in any of the boss fights. I had a large number of pets, though, so that definitely helped, they did a lot to help tie up the minions on the boss battles.

Two left, and I feel like I've probably done the hardest ones now. I hope the barbarian is worth it after all this :P
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on February 21, 2018, 08:54:13 AM
Yeah, I can see how to do all the others, I think it's just getting pretty grinding working through the different frustrations of each challenge. Like, they're a good "ultimate test of skill", but I don't think I'll be re-playing many (probably any) of them once I've done them.

Yes, they were meant to be completed once and that's it. Maybe "one-shot" is fun to replay, or taking on all the trolls in the "Trolling" one. Others, not so much.

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Two left, and I feel like I've probably done the hardest ones now. I hope the barbarian is worth it after all this :P

I think Barbarian should be ready by the end of this week.

I tested his weapon yesterday and after a couple of iterations I think I nailed it. His axe has combo buildup: as long as you can string hits together without pausing or missing, the damage goes up. Similar to the Blood Axe it doesn't make the enemies lose ground with subsequent hits, so you can keep the combo alive until you kill an enemy. While your combo is active, you are immune to projectiles (just like having an Elven shield). The strong attack is uppercut, so you can take down shielded enemies. I tried it out with a Knight (because Barbarian isn't finished yet) and it really gives you that "berserking" feeling of just going out with melee strikes and killing everything in your way without thinking much about "defense".

Special attack for the axe is the "mega throw", similar to Mjolnir and Goblin Axe.

As for the hero, I want to make him rarely use magic. He starts with 100 melee, 90 archery, 10 magic and his specials include "double rage buildup", i.e. his rage fills up twice faster than other heroes and "+3 mana cost" similar to distraction but cannot be removed with potions.

I feel like he has great melee potential because of double rage, so he will probably start with 80 health. At first I wanted to have something like "suffer more damage from enemy attacks", but I find that lowering the starting health has the same effect without having to explain too much to the players.

UPDATE: Barbarian is IN. Version 3.2.3. If you want to try him out without having to complete all the challenges, there's a cheat code for that. Just let me know and I'll post it here.

Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on February 22, 2018, 09:18:57 PM
I've only got two challenges left, I'll do it the hard way.

Though that said, I'm thinking I'm going to take a week or so's break at this point - I can't seem to complete the bomb challenge, no matter what I do. I'm very rarely managing to get ice immunity, and even when I do I'm just finding the ice level boss fights impossible to complete. I basically need to reload until I get a run with good scrolls, I suspect, but it's taking absolutely ages and it's just getting demoralising. (Also, you didn't tell me that "immune to explosions" doesn't actually make you immune to the exploding presents...)
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on February 23, 2018, 06:00:32 PM
you didn't tell me that "immune to explosions" doesn't actually make you immune to the exploding presents

Oh, I completely forgot about that. Only bomb explosions.

BTW, I decided to bite the bullet and fix the voodoo problem. It turned out that it wasn't so hard because of some infrastructure (that I added recently with a completely different purpose) that I was able to reuse. I changed it so that all the links to the dolls get removed when the voodoo effect expires. This means that re-targeting a doll to an enemy works properly now and dropping a doll you were marked with earlier is safe. Basically, it works in the most intuitive way. I tested it a lot and it looks like there are no bugs, so it's official now (version 3.2.5).
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on February 23, 2018, 07:33:55 PM
I've had a couple of crash to desktop issues since the most recent version came out - it seems to be triggered when I hit/press a movement key during the game's initial loading screen, though I'm not 100% sure yet.

Master Blaster is now done - I finally got bomberman potions, which I'd not had in any of the previous attempts, and those make a *massive* difference. Using a confusion scroll against the snowman worked really well, incidentally - the ice wizards pinned him in place with his blocking effect so I could chuck bombs in from behind. I didn't have ice immunity or sure footing of any sort, but given I was chucking out over 10 bombs in all directions, accuracy didn't matter so much any more! I did have petrify immunity, but I skipped most of the final level with a silver coin all the same just to be careful! Medusas were easy as I had ice bomb, the dragon master took a while but wasn't really any kind of a threat as I could just dodge and still hit him with bombs, and especially once the dragon was gone I could just keep knocking him down.

One to go. Barbarian should be unlocked soon :)

EDIT: And we're done! Though I got a "this dinosaur ate your game" crash immediately after finishing the final challenge. Logs attached.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on February 24, 2018, 11:47:16 AM
I've had a couple of crash to desktop issues since the most recent version came out - it seems to be triggered when I hit/press a movement key during the game's initial loading screen, though I'm not 100% sure yet.

Do you get the "dinosaur ate your game" for those as well? If yes, getting full.log or crash dump would be really useful.

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And we're done!

Congrats. I'm yet to do it, so you're probably the best SoaW player on the planet at this point. At least regarding the achievements.

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Though I got a "this dinosaur ate your game" crash immediately after finishing the final challenge. Logs attached.

It looks like full.log was re-created later. It shows different game version (3.2.6 vs 3.2.5 in the crash file), I assume you restarted the game before making a copy?

Since we don't have the exact full.log, I cannot see the whole thing, only the crash. From the crash, I assume it crashed when you tried to leave the final screen and selected the option to go back to the main menu? Did you get to see the final cut-scene where you fly away on the dragon before it crashed?

The only thing that could be related are the recent changes I made to the voodoo dolls. The crash log shows that it did crash on some regular item, most likely a voodoo doll, but I can't figure it out. Did you have a voodoo doll in your inventory at the end of the game? Or maybe something else unusual regarding some voodoo dolls in that run?

Thanks.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on February 24, 2018, 01:37:00 PM
Yeah, that's when the crash happened - I did see the cutscene, I think. On the menu loading CTD I don't get the "dinosaur ate your game", it just goes white and then the program stops. There was nothing odd with the dolls going on in that game, and I'm pretty sure I didn't have one in my inventory. It was a good run; I was lucky enough to find the bottomless bag of bombs early, and I had the fox pet, so I barely needed to use any cursed keys throughout the game. I had a pretty pumped-up chanter and a load of gamble and sunset scrolls by the late game, so I was chucking out a lot of damage. I think I still had 4 gamble scrolls left at the end, since I didn't bother using any on the dragon master.

If I have any more end-of-game crashes I'll let you know.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on February 24, 2018, 03:40:09 PM
Yeah, that's when the crash happened - I did see the cutscene, I think. On the menu loading CTD I don't get the "dinosaur ate your game", it just goes white and then the program stops.

That would mean that the problem is not in my code but some of the libraries I use. That will be hard to debug :(

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If I have any more end-of-game crashes I'll let you know.

Thank you. I added more logging in that area now, so full.log should contain even more details. If it happens, make sure you make a copy of full.log before you start the game again.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on February 24, 2018, 06:32:58 PM
Yes, will do :)

OK, so what's "hard mode" going to look like? I kind of assumed it would bulk out numbers of enemies mostly, but that already happened in overdrive...
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on February 26, 2018, 10:25:26 AM
OK, so what's "hard mode" going to look like? I kind of assumed it would bulk out numbers of enemies mostly, but that already happened in overdrive...

Here's the plan:

- heroes start with no items (except arrows)
- a bomb is always on the starting pedestal
- poison is permanent (I know you will hate this one)
- regular enemies have +1 speed
- all enemies have +20% HP per game level (starting from level 2)
- killing one bushido makes them all hostile

Some things I'm considering but am not sure about yet:

- garden/shooting range/baseball room (with many runestones) doesn't show up

- add a red dragon to the final boss fight

- drinking gives you hiccups (maybe every 5 potions) Alternatively "drinking 5 known potions" gives you hiccups to still encourage players to try out the potions to discover the effects

- eating makes you thirsty (maybe after every 3 snacks i.e. pieces of food) This can be a problem if you break a barrel/box and walk onto the piece of food before you even get to see it on the screen. Alternative would be to replace the Sorceress starting staff with some other (Shepherd most probably).
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on February 26, 2018, 12:19:46 PM
By "poison is permanent" do you mean "poison is incurable" or just "poison never wears off until you cure it"?

The main plan all seems reasonable, though I'd consider +20% damage dealt rather than +20%HP - that would keep things fast moving, and make the later level regulars a much tougher combat challenge, rather than just making all the ice level battles really slow as it'd then take ages to plug through all the high HP enemies. Losing the runestone rooms is also reasonable, and I'm definitely in favour of adding a red dragon to the final boss fight, which can sometimes get a bit underwhelming atm. I feel like the hiccups thing could just get annoying - like, a hard mode should make the game trickier, but I don't think making it more frustrating would help. I think the food -> thirst thing could work fine though. :)
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on February 26, 2018, 08:59:49 PM
By "poison is permanent" do you mean "poison is incurable" or just "poison never wears off until you cure it"?

Does not wear off until you cure it. Although, I thought about it a lot today after writing it down. Maybe something like 10 btl. would be more reasonable to prevent luck having too much influence.

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The main plan all seems reasonable, though I'd consider +20% damage dealt rather than +20%HP - that would keep things fast moving, and make the later level regulars a much tougher combat challenge, rather than just making all the ice level battles really slow as it'd then take ages to plug through all the high HP enemies.

In some runs I felt like the enemies should have more HP. I would typically do 25 or more per orb / quick sword hit or around 150 with arrows by that time. If the enemies die before they can reach you, higher damage won't help them.

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I feel like the hiccups thing could just get annoying - like, a hard mode should make the game trickier, but I don't think making it more frustrating would help. I think the food -> thirst thing could work fine though. :)

Maybe it would be better if I restrict the hiccup thing to some potions? The main purpose of that effect was to balance potions like "Money is Power", "Barbarian's Friend" and "Apprentizer" from making players OP without any drawback. Maybe I should just add hiccups to those potions.

Problem with food and thirst is that some enemies drop food and it also drops from barrels, so if you're running and hitting stuff with a melee hero, you would pick up food without even noticing. This would make the melee heroes unattractive for Hard Mode. Perhaps I should link the effect to usage of Strawberry staff (you get thirsty every time you use it, or maybe if you eat food created by the staff).

BTW, another player sent me the crash log with the new version and I was finally able to find the bug. It was related to the new way the Voodoo dolls work. I'm uploading a new version (3.3.2) with the fix now.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on February 26, 2018, 09:19:59 PM
I think personally I could deal with "doesn't wear off until you cure it" - like, it would make the healing staff a much more important item again, but I'd say there are a lot of games where I never get poisoned anyway. I don't think it'd be too unbalanced.

Regarding HP/Damage, you could try with half and half, 10% HP and 10% damage per level? I'm just worried that the ice level potentially gets quite slow if it's just an HP boost. I guess I feel like it might make the desert level enemies more of a threat, as especially if you have the medusa amulet they're just not that dangerous atm.

You could just remove the potentially OP potions - adding hiccups to them would work in terms of game balance, but hiccups just aren't a very fun effect to play with. I find it fair enough if I get them because I got caught by a skeleton, as that's the game "punishing" me for not playing well enough, but I think being forced to have them to advance your character might just get annoying. Hiccups also penalise melee characters way worse than ranged characters, and archers way worse than wizards, so it would heavily change the balance between the character types I think.

Glad to hear the bug is fixed :)
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on February 27, 2018, 01:25:43 PM
Regarding HP/Damage, you could try with half and half, 10% HP and 10% damage per level? I'm just worried that the ice level potentially gets quite slow if it's just an HP boost. I guess I feel like it might make the desert level enemies more of a threat, as especially if you have the medusa amulet they're just not that dangerous atm.

I feel like it 10% is too low for damage, but maybe it would be best to just add it to the game and try it out.

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You could just remove the potentially OP potions - adding hiccups to them would work in terms of game balance, but hiccups just aren't a very fun effect to play with. I find it fair enough if I get them because I got caught by a skeleton, as that's the game "punishing" me for not playing well enough, but I think being forced to have them to advance your character might just get annoying. Hiccups also penalise melee characters way worse than ranged characters, and archers way worse than wizards, so it would heavily change the balance between the character types I think.

I didn't consider how hiccups are a big problem with melee heroes. You're right, removing those potions would be the best idea.

BTW, I'm thinking to really create a printed manual from the unit descriptions you wrote on the forums (I would add pictures/screenshots and more information) so I re-read what you wrote. I don't know if I missed it before, or you added it later but those "background story" snippets for the enemies are very funny. I chuckled a couple of times and even laughed out loud for a couple of those (ex. the wizards and the king). I love them. :)
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on February 28, 2018, 10:54:16 AM
I'll get round to finishing writing them and updating with the new bosses at some point :) I also realised that I really need to update the unofficial monster guide with a list of which monsters & bosses are immune to which effects like poison etc...

Also, some recent fun. On a daily challenge, I got to the desert with a shepherd staff and about 100 mana left in stock, and I just thought, hmm, maybe...
(https://i.imgur.com/b3X1upG.png)
(https://i.imgur.com/sSU925k.png)
(https://i.imgur.com/LEopczq.png)

I feel like there should be an achievement for turning 50 enemies into sheep or something :P One room even ended up with a sheep statue after a stoneheart petrified a sheep before being sheep-ified herself.

Also, I was showing a friend the game, and I decided for once to use medusa arrows (which I never use because I don't want to miss out on the drops). And then I went into the cyclopes boss fight and got *the perfect* shot:
(https://i.imgur.com/OkSkK6G.png)
Beautiful double statue with archway :D And got them both with the one arrow on a rage shot, too!
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on February 28, 2018, 01:14:57 PM
I'll get round to finishing writing them and updating with the new bosses at some point :) I also realised that I really need to update the unofficial monster guide with a list of which monsters & bosses are immune to which effects like poison etc...

Hope I don't forget something:

Golem is immune to Poison and Petrification.

The Red Dragon is immune to fire.

The Ice Dragon and all the units on the Ice level are immune to freezing.

The Hornet Queen, Medusa, and all the skeleton units are immune to poison.

The Wind Mages are immune to freezing.

All Desert level bosses are immune to petrification.

The Dragon Master is immune to freezing, fire, poison, petrification.

Also, some of the bosses are immune to stun effect, i.e. you cannot interrupt their actions at all: Dragons, Golem, Slime King, Hornet Queen, Yeti Elder, War Elephant, Santa, War Sheep, Snowman.

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Also, some recent fun. On a daily challenge, I got to the desert with a shepherd staff and about 100 mana left in stock, and I just thought, hmm, maybe...

LOL. I actually had one run where I had to do something like that to survive. I don't recall exactly, but it was one of the barbarian challenges. I was down to almost no health on the ice level, without freezing immunity or any protection from sliding. My damage was average and I had no minions. The only thing I had was Mana Canteen, a lot of mana points (about 70 IIRC) and I found the Shepherd staff in a chest :) Managed to use it to get all the way to the desert level boss and died there.

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I feel like there should be an achievement for turning 50 enemies into sheep or something :P One room even ended up with a sheep statue after a stoneheart petrified a sheep before being sheep-ified herself.

That's just hilarious.

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And then I went into the cyclopes boss fight and got *the perfect* shot:
(https://i.imgur.com/OkSkK6G.png)
Beautiful double statue with archway :D And got them both with the one arrow on a rage shot, too!

Very cool. You should've uploaded that one to the screenshot section on Steam as well (just press F12 while in game and then click to upload when you end it).
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on March 02, 2018, 05:45:44 PM
Hard Mode is in. You need to kill the Dragon Master with all 7 heroes in regular game to unlock it.

Poison is +10 btl compared to usual. Using the strawberry staff makes you thirsty. OP potions and Mana Canteen are removed.

I also added 3 achievements when you beat the hard mode with melee, magic and archery hero.

Other important change coming today is the new immunity: slowdown immunity. I decided to make all the amulets consistent, so the Rabbit Amulet now gives you slowdown immunity instead of speeding you up. This means you are immune to all kinds of slowdown (using the War Axe, getting Steel Boots or Green Slime, walking into a slime puddle, Ice Wizards fog, any potion that slows you down, etc.).

The Dragon Master will also have slowdown immunity.

The version with these changes is in beta. I'm testing it and will make it official later today.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on March 02, 2018, 08:38:08 PM
Huh, I was thinking of suggesting slowdown immunity as an idea recently. Good to see you got there first! :)

I think the new achievements are good, I was wondering if they could be given more fun names? It feels oddly underwhelming for the achievement to be just called, e.g., "Knight" When it could be, say, "Knight Errant" or "Knight of the Round Table" or something a bit more evocative.

Also, shouldn't the new achievements work with daily challenges? I completed one as a knight yesterday and didn't get the achievement...
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on March 03, 2018, 01:06:47 PM
I think the new achievements are good, I was wondering if they could be given more fun names? It feels oddly underwhelming for the achievement to be just called, e.g., "Knight" When it could be, say, "Knight Errant" or "Knight of the Round Table" or something a bit more evocative.

It could be a good idea, although I feel like it could be confusing if every hero had a completely different one.

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Also, shouldn't the new achievements work with daily challenges? I completed one as a knight yesterday and didn't get the achievement...

I though about that, but daily challenges have a slightly different level generator, so I didn't want to mix it up. The difference can be big if you're starting out and haven't unlocked some drops (it's all unlocked in DC). But now that I think about it, I understand it could be a problem for players who have already completed the game multiple times and only play daily challenge, so I will change that in the next version.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on March 03, 2018, 02:17:58 PM
I've got four of the new achievements now - I decided to start with the hardest and work down, so I've now done Skele, Pyro, Barbarian, and Knight - Enchantress, Druid and Archer still to go :)
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on March 04, 2018, 05:01:18 PM
I've got four of the new achievements now - I decided to start with the hardest and work down, so I've now done Skele, Pyro, Barbarian, and Knight - Enchantress, Druid and Archer still to go :)

I unlocked them all in the past few days, but still have got 4 barbarian challenges to do.  >:D

BTW, I just found a bug that the rabbit amulet effect gets removed from heroes often, so I'm uploading a new version with the fix now. This new version includes the change that allows to win those achievements in the daily challenge as well. Version 3.3.7.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on March 04, 2018, 06:23:13 PM
I've now got all the regular achievements. Had a few cracks at hard mode - it's fine, I guess it just feels like another challenge mode at this point (also in that I think I'll probably play it until I get the achievements and not much further). I got a knight as far as the desert but then got petrified, and a wizard to the ice level but he was using a pogonip staff so his main bonus was then nullified. Scrolls and special effect immunities seem to be more important in hard mode, I think.

Out of interest, is the hard mode achievement "complete the game" or "kill the dragon master" - in other words, do I still get the achievement if I barrel-roll or gamble the dragon master fight?
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on March 05, 2018, 10:59:27 AM
I guess it just feels like another challenge mode at this point (also in that I think I'll probably play it until I get the achievements and not much further).

That was the plan. Just another set of challenges for expert players.

Quote
Out of interest, is the hard mode achievement "complete the game" or "kill the dragon master" - in other words, do I still get the achievement if I barrel-roll or gamble the dragon master fight?

Just "complete the game".

BTW, I finally managed to beat the Survival challenge and it was without gold diet, mana canteen or strawberry staff. The key was the "dying enemies drop bombs" item. I would lure enemies close to doors and kill them to blast and move into the next room before the battle was over. The boss fights were still challenging, but I got a couple of Escape scrolls, so I evaded the Ice (had no ice immunity nor anything to prevent sliding) and the first Desert boss (I think I'm yet to beat the Elephant). I played with the pyromancer, so the dragon master fight wasn't too hard as I didn't lose too much health from his dragon mount.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on March 05, 2018, 11:09:42 AM
Huh, yeah, I tend to go for a "complete everything" game approach more than I should in the challenge modes, I guess. I've got master of magic now - my main conclusion so far is that speed is even more important in hard mode, my deaths are nearly always just "oops too slow".

EDIT: Got Master of Archery and Master of Melee done today. Ironically, Master of Melee was done more at range and Master of Archery at close quarters - for master of archery (with archer), whilst I had a decent bow my main weapon was a cutlass with 3 runestones on it with which I built my melee up (plus sunset scrolls for later levels), and for Master of Melee (with knight), I had mjolnir, only 1 runestone on it but I had both carpenter's emblem and dwarven spinner so I was chucking out six of them in all directions (also with 2 sunset scrolls for ice level and 3 for final level, and I skipped most of final level with a silver shilling). Up to date with achievements again!
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on March 06, 2018, 06:52:33 PM
Up to date with achievements again!

Nice. A new batch is coming soon. I'm currently looking into the marketing side of the game business but after that is done I plan to add 20+ new specific (i.e. not "win the game type") achievements.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on March 07, 2018, 07:04:23 PM
Cool :) Will be good to see more!

I might note down a bunch of general thoughts/ideas I had for things you could add after leaving early access, sometime soon? I've got some notes somewhere - many of them might just take too long or not fit in, but there may be a good idea in there somewhere.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on March 07, 2018, 07:13:52 PM
I might note down a bunch of general thoughts/ideas I had for things you could add after leaving early access, sometime soon?

I would love to read those.

Currently, the launch date is set to May 16th if all goes as planned (It might get moved to June if I get invited to present the game at E3, but I somehow doubt that would happen). I could do it sooner, but there are some big gaming events in March and April, so players will be overwhelmed with new games.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on March 09, 2018, 09:12:00 AM
(https://bigosaur.com/blog/images/witch-0181-ach.png)

Version 3.3.8. is online:

- 28 new achievements ranging from easy to very tricky ones
- tremor status effect now affects orbs, arrows, bombs and throw weapons
- increased the starting hero skills in casual mode
- fixed bug when releasing the attack button with a bow in hand would initiate the backup knife attack
- fixed bug when typing in chat would activate the backup knife attack
- updated some of the translations

This version concludes the content I planned for the Early Access. I will dedicate the next month or so to extensively playtest the game for the final release, so only expect bugfixes and translation updates in this period. I have a bunch of new features I plan to add in the future, but I want the exiting Early Access release to be well tested and bug free.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on March 15, 2018, 02:03:09 PM
Some notes/thoughts:

> Petrification achievement triggers when allies get petrified too, not sure if this is intentional but I managed to get it by taking an army into the desert and them getting casualties from the stonehearts.
> Achievements gained in offline mode seem to disappear when you go online rather than sync. I went achievement hunting yesterday on the plane, but they all disappeared today :(

EDIT: Got both the gold achievements and the hammer achievement done on the same run - had the glacier, and my pirate-knight, and both avarice and money is power potions combo'd. I literally killed the Dragon Master in two hits, I was ridiculously high buffed by the end of it (I also cleared every room of the catacombs along the way...).

EDIT #2: Also, I dropped you a PM about some stuff :)
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on March 16, 2018, 02:01:05 PM
Petrification achievement triggers when allies get petrified too, not sure if this is intentional but I managed to get it by taking an army into the desert and them getting casualties from the stonehearts.

It's a bug. I'm fixing it now.

Quote
Achievements gained in offline mode seem to disappear when you go online rather than sync. I went achievement hunting yesterday on the plane, but they all disappeared today :(

This is because I wanted to allow two different Steam accounts on the same computer. So, once the game loads the achievement data from steam, it overwrites any current state. This basically means that you should either play online or offline all the time, but mixing is not possible. Maybe I could fix this by storing the Steam user ID somewhere and preventing "overwrite" if you use the same account. I need to think about it.

Quote
both avarice and money is power potions combo'd

I find this combination really enjoyable, especially for melee characters. Since I'm not using mana, I can grab a magic chest and buff it even more.

Quote
EDIT #2: Also, I dropped you a PM about some stuff :)

I replied back with a question (whether to send you the key via forum or e-mail) but never got the reply? Also I don't see a way to read my "sent" private messages. Is that even possible with this forum software?
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on March 16, 2018, 03:33:55 PM
I just hadn't got round to replying yet, I'm being a bit slow with things (in my defence, I'm on medical instructions to cut down on things a bit, I've finally managed to actually make myself ill from doing too much). If you go on your messages inbox, there's a button on the left hand side saying "messages", next to "actions" and "preferences": mouse over that, and there's a dropdown with "Sent Items" at the bottom of the list. I think you need to check a box below messages when you send them to save them there, too.

Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on March 16, 2018, 05:23:11 PM
I just hadn't got round to replying yet, I'm being a bit slow with things (in my defence, I'm on medical instructions to cut down on things a bit, I've finally managed to actually make myself ill from doing too much).

I hope nothing too serious?

Quote
If you go on your messages inbox, there's a button on the left hand side saying "messages", next to "actions" and "preferences": mouse over that, and there's a dropdown with "Sent Items" at the bottom of the list. I think you need to check a box below messages when you send them to save them there, too.

Found it. I didn't notice I should hover the mouse over and I somehow missed the checkbox as well, but I just tried it on the message with the Steam key and it works.

Thanks.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on March 16, 2018, 10:18:40 PM
It's not too bad, it's going to take a while to recover from though - I have medication to help manage some of the symptoms, so I guess at least I can focus on trying to recover in the next few months & know what I need to do.

And yes... maybe I should write a guide to how to use the messaging system, we have a section for site tutorials and that might be useful for people...
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on March 17, 2018, 04:40:10 PM
And yes... maybe I should write a guide to how to use the messaging system, we have a section for site tutorials and that might be useful for people...

Don't bother. People won't be looking for a specific thread to read about that, they would simply conclude that it isn't possible. Website users expect features the be visible on the page where they want to use them and I don't know anyone who reads a manual how to use a website. The real problems are:

- the "sent messages" option only shows up when you hover the mouse over, so it's hard to discover
- the "save copy to outbox" checkbox should be checked by default (and you would only un-check it for certain sensitive messages you don't want to store)

Changing those would actually solve the problems, but I guess it's all built into the forum software and there isn't much you can do.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on March 17, 2018, 04:50:04 PM
I'll add it to the to do list... there's a lot that can be changed about the forum software, and I have the technical ability to do it, just not the time :(

I got "Challenger", "Necromancer" and "Takeover" in a single Daily Challenge run today. Challenger and Necromancer are both heavily reliant on having the lower catacombs present, I think.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on March 18, 2018, 01:31:51 PM
I got "Challenger", "Necromancer" and "Takeover" in a single Daily Challenge run today. Challenger and Necromancer are both heavily reliant on having the lower catacombs present, I think.

For Challenger, yes, I believe so. Necromancer can be done without it because raising the same undead over and over also counts.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on March 19, 2018, 01:08:08 PM
The F1 key thing to test for the Dracula achievement - what does that actually test for/require? Necro staff + Lower Catacombs, or just Necro Staff being present?
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on March 19, 2018, 01:16:44 PM
The F1 key thing to test for the Dracula achievement - what does that actually test for/require? Necro staff + Lower Catacombs, or just Necro Staff being present?

It tests if the lower catacombs are created and one of the necromancers drops the staff.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on March 19, 2018, 01:17:48 PM
There's the new release trailer:


We're exiting Early Access in May.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Tusky on March 19, 2018, 01:22:05 PM

shepherd staff looks like a chuckle. I Like the epic music you used too


looks great!
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on March 19, 2018, 01:31:56 PM
I don't think you need the lower catacombs for the achievement, unless it's changed - I'm pretty sure I got it by raising the same vampiress ten times in a row.

(Though it is useful to have the lower catacombs check, mainly for the "comeback" achievement, which I still haven't got).

Can confirm that the shepherd staff is great fun :)
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on March 19, 2018, 03:18:24 PM
I don't think you need the lower catacombs for the achievement, unless it's changed - I'm pretty sure I got it by raising the same vampiress ten times in a row.

Oh, I completely forgot about that. Perhaps I should just print some other message in the log instead.

EDIT: now that I think about it, I think it's a bug. You should raise 10 different ones, not the same one 10 times. I will fix that in the next version.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on March 19, 2018, 05:33:28 PM
OK, but please don't wipe my having already got the thing, saving that vampiress from petrification took some effort :P

But yeah - I think it's a useful readout, but mainly because it's got several attached things that it makes much easier - Necromancer, Undead Friend, and Comeback are all much easier to do if it's set to "possible".

I'm really struggling with the barbarian axe achievement, I've been trying it on the Overdrive challenge but I still can't seem to get above the mid twenties... I guess maybe I need to make it as far as a castle level. I just managed to wipe an entire room of 8 goblins out without breaking the streak once, without any upgrades on my axe/melee (as the upgrades make it harder since you're starting on higher damage) and I still didn't reach 30.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on March 19, 2018, 09:12:29 PM
OK, but please don't wipe my having already got the thing, saving that vampiress from petrification took some effort :P

 :) I never delete the achievements, so no worries there.

Quote
I'm really struggling with the barbarian axe achievement, I've been trying it on the Overdrive challenge but I still can't seem to get above the mid twenties...

You should try with bosses, it's much easier to do. I have done it multiple times during testing. Ogre Mama is tricky because she might run out of HP by the time you get to 30, so you need to string some goblins as well, but bosses on later levels have more HP... just use something to slow them down so they don't move too much and keep hitting. You're immune to projectiles, so minions have to come close and then you can add them to the combo counter ;).
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on March 19, 2018, 10:51:03 PM
I tried that (quite a few times now), I find that either minions get behind me and break the streak or I need to dodge and I'm not good enough on the controls to divert :( I'm sure it's just about possible, I'm just not sure I can be bothered to do as many runs as it will take anytime soon, since a) it takes a while to get to the mid-level bosses where one can sensibly attempt the challenge, b) my melee playstyle usually involves way more dodging and weapon switching so I'm not well practised at just plugging away repeatedly whilst also dodging and c) I don't regularly play as the barbarian. It's just a pain in the neck to try and achievement-hunt that particular one and it's unlikely I'll get it in normal gameplay.

EDIT: Finally did it, kept loading up the Head Start challenge and running into the boss fight until eventually I got a speed boost + getting a bit lucky with the violet knights. Also, completed "comeback"... Gonzales and Shortcut I suspect both need to be done via the shortcut, and both need an extremely good set of boosts from level 1, so I guess those will have to wait until I get some good RNG... is there any chance of getting an F1 readout for whether the shortcut is present? I know it doesn't take that long to look, but with a 1/20 or so chance that's still a lot of useless 5 minute runs around the forest.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on March 21, 2018, 11:35:39 AM
I know it doesn't take that long to look, but with a 1/20 or so chance that's still a lot of useless 5 minute runs around the forest.

The chance is 10%.

I only added the F1 for DRACULA because the players who have played the game before the ach. was added have probably already raised 10 vampiresses while doing the Eye of Ramana quest, so having only 5% chance to get it after that is a problem.

If you really want the achievement, you can simply write down the seed (once you get the shortcut) and repeat it with the /seed command. This one doesn't require cheat mode, it's perfectly "legal" to do.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on March 21, 2018, 11:45:36 AM
OK, fair enough :)

Did shepherd this morning, so 5 achievments to go - Gonzales, Shortcut, Foxy, Friends 'til the End, and Burglar. The latter should be easy, Foxy should be fine sometime when I start a run and get the fox on the first level. FttE I've definitely done once or twice in the past (I think as the barbarian oddly enough)... speed-running isn't my forte though so the others may be trickier!
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on March 21, 2018, 01:34:42 PM
Did shepherd this morning, so 5 achievments to go - Gonzales, Shortcut, Foxy, Friends 'til the End, and Burglar. The latter should be easy, Foxy should be fine sometime when I start a run and get the fox on the first level. FttE I've definitely done once or twice in the past (I think as the barbarian oddly enough)... speed-running isn't my forte though so the others may be trickier!

Wow, I'm way behind you. Although, I plan to record a series of videos for YouTube that would show how to win every achievement in the game and I keep delaying that until all the bugs are ironed out.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on March 23, 2018, 01:16:38 PM
Got Gonzales done as the pyromancer (which speeds up the early battles). Game completed in 29 minutes and 30s - I used a shortcut level with the seed command and it took a few attempts, and I did the last two boss battles with zero health and some gamble scrolls. :)

Shortcut achievement still isn't complete as I had to gamble the dragon master, which I think stops you getting that achievement. Ah well - I guess I'll probably use the same seed again but take a less aggressive/high speed approach.

EDIT: Re-did exactly the same level/tactics, but slower and more thoroughly and did the boss fight properly, and Shortcut is now done as well :) Three to go...

EDIT: And that's Friends To The End done as well. Impressively, I got as far as the achievement without the boar dying and having to be resurrected at any point - I was the chanter and had some very high-damage orbs being fired, and a turret staff. I eventually found the life staff, but only on the ice level - of course I also had my strawberry staff & was feeding the boar a lot. I decided to finish the game, and the boar did die once in the desert boss fight - I got the elephant, and it's basically impossible to avoid being knocked off your mount with its ridiculous super meteor strike attack thingy (I think the elephant is probably the game's hardest boss? I'd definitely say it's harder than dragon master: the ice level snowman is probably the second worst after it I think).

EDIT: And that's all of them done, the last two were pretty simple.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on March 24, 2018, 10:30:46 AM
EDIT: And that's all of them done, the last two were pretty simple

That's... amazing.  :llama1:

Darn, now I have to come up with new ones  ;D
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on March 24, 2018, 10:34:26 AM
Please don't, these have taken up way too much time :P (Besides which, I'm not sure there are many achievements you could add extra to the game as it stands that would provide a good additional challenge without being really annoyingly reliant on RNG).

And I've got to finish writing the guides as well, so I need some time to get up to date with those :)
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on May 16, 2018, 12:54:52 PM
The game is released!

https://steamcommunity.com/games/539400/announcements/detail/1656641115369264946

I want to thank you for all the playtesting, suggestions and help.

BTW, I just got confirmation from Nintendo, so the game will be available on Nintendo Switch console later this year.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on May 17, 2018, 02:04:37 AM
Congratulations! I'll have to try and get the guides up to date, I'm in the US at the moment but I'll have some braindead time getting over jetlag this weekend when I'll hopefully be able to do it.

What're the plans now - more system ports, more features, or another project?
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on May 17, 2018, 06:54:26 AM
Congratulations! I'll have to try and get the guides up to date, I'm in the US at the moment but I'll have some braindead time getting over jetlag this weekend when I'll hopefully be able to do it.

Awesome! Thanks.

Quote
What're the plans now - more system ports, more features, or another project?

I feel like the Switch port will take a couple of months. I'm not sure about other platforms, most probably not.

I plan to have one big update with more heroes, enemies, weapons, items, special rooms in the future. I have a lot of ideas already worked out on paper and the graphics is ready, so I just need to do the animations and programming. This won't come soon, maybe by the end of the year or something like that.

I plan to start making a new game in 2019. I have a bunch of ideas, but still cannot decide which one would be the best. More on that after the SoaW big update comes.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Tusky on May 17, 2018, 07:52:28 AM
Congrats from me too!

Nintendo port - that's really cool :)
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on May 20, 2018, 09:56:37 AM
Bug report - it seems that you can smelt the Tar of Akhall with the portable furnace, which seems like a thing the game shouldn't allow you to do?

EDIT: Also, can I get HP numbers for the three desert bosses?
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on May 20, 2018, 05:09:58 PM
Bug report - it seems that you can smelt the Tar of Akhall with the portable furnace, which seems like a thing the game shouldn't allow you to do?

Should I change this? I mean, there's nothing special about the Tar that would protect it from smelting. I know it breaks the game and you cannot complete it, but consistency-wise?

Quote
EDIT: Also, can I get HP numbers for the three desert bosses?

Sure:

Dragon Master
regular game: 3000 + players * 2000
casual game: 2000 + players * 1000

He has 2 phases. In the first phase he rides a baby dragon so all damage is halved until you knock him off. The dragon has 200 HP. So, you first have to do 400 damage to enter phase two. In phase 1 he is also using the spear magic. In phase two he throws spears at you, but doesn't use the magic anymore.

War Elephant:
regular game: 2300 + players * 1700
casual game: 1600 + players *  700

Medusa:
regular game: 1200 + players * 800
casual game: 750 + players * 400

Thorn Reaper:
regular game: 2500 + players * 1800
casual game: 1800 + players * 800
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on May 20, 2018, 07:07:00 PM
I think you should change it simply because it breaks the game. I think it's fine to say "you can't smelt this it's too magically protected" or whatever, it's literally meant to be the final super-powerful endgame item that we've been pursuing for seven levels, it feels more weird if it *isn't* special.

Thanks for the numbers :)
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on May 21, 2018, 09:54:32 AM
I think you should change it simply because it breaks the game. I think it's fine to say "you can't smelt this it's too magically protected" or whatever, it's literally meant to be the final super-powerful endgame item that we've been pursuing for seven levels, it feels more weird if it *isn't* special.

Alright. Coming in today's update.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on May 23, 2018, 02:40:34 PM
Cool :)

Right, I've added more to the monster manual, still got some flavour text to write. I've not got all the numbers on damage of different boss moves, I've got a fair percentage of it by testing but not there yet. Equipment guide I think is done with the exception of a section on mounts. Playing guide has a bit more to do, I'm working on a section on achievement hunting atm, and I might put more in about the different hero types and combat styles at some point but that might be a longer term aim :)
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on May 23, 2018, 07:58:34 PM
Right, I've added more to the monster manual, still got some flavour text to write.

Checking it out now. EDIT: I noticed something strange, it looks like the damage number for Crystal Wizard ( 8 ) shows up as 8)

Quote
I've not got all the numbers on damage of different boss moves, I've got a fair percentage of it by testing but not there yet.

If you want, just leave a mark like this in the text: (?dmg)

Once you mark all of those, let me know and I will go through and fill in the values.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on May 24, 2018, 12:18:45 AM
Yeah, fixed that smiley code and marked all the stats I'm missing (I think) :)

Query - do all the achievements still trigger in all the barbarian challenge modes? I'm wondering if for some of the catacomb-clearance achievements "try this in a One Shot game" would be good advice to give?
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on May 25, 2018, 12:38:49 AM
Yeah, fixed that smiley code and marked all the stats I'm missing (I think) :)

Updated. Few notes: the elephant charging across the screen doesn't do any damage to the players. It wasn't supposed to, but Medusa sword attack apparently does only 5 damage, and the animation is buggy (only one sword is shown although both swords can hit the player), so I will have to fix this.

Quote
Query - do all the achievements still trigger in all the barbarian challenge modes? I'm wondering if for some of the catacomb-clearance achievements "try this in a One Shot game" would be good advice to give?

Take a look at the achievement description in Steam. If it says "in regular game" that one only triggers in regular game and daily challenge.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on May 25, 2018, 12:58:06 AM
I came across the new version of the quiver in today's daily challenge as the archer, but it didn't appear to have any effect at all, my total damage was still 55 on the bow before and after picking it up :(

Also, I think archers may now be a bit over-powered. The fast draw speed means you can, for example, defeat trolls without needing specialist arrows as long as you have a rage attack available (fire one, fire rage shot, fire two, then you've still got time to fire a killing shot). It also means you can rob shops really really easily with snailbite arrows, rather than it being a matter of careful timing you can plug 2 or 3 arrows into the bushido well before he gets to you. Coupled with really high-powered upgrades, I found in today's daily challenge that I was one-shotting everything, yetis and jackal-gorillas included, from the start of the castle level onwards. I even killed one of the medusas with a single shot, though I think that was with a critical hit; with a crit on the final dragon master battle I did over 2000 damage which seems... excessive? I mean, I built my character and bow up pretty carefully, and in a setup that had plenty of replicators and runestones, but it just felt really weirdly easy compared to normal.

Anyhow - I've finished the guide section on achievements and challenge modes, so that's another thing done :) I'm still meaning to write a short feature suggestions list now the main version is done, I'll hopefully finish that in the next few days and finish adding the flavour text to the monster guide as well.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on May 26, 2018, 11:23:44 AM
I came across the new version of the quiver in today's daily challenge as the archer, but it didn't appear to have any effect at all, my total damage was still 55 on the bow before and after picking it up :(

Strange. I just tested and the damage is 60 after you pick it up. If this happens again, could you make a screenshot for me? Just make sure you pause the game so that the stats and the weapon info are visible on the screen.

Quote
Also, I think archers may now be a bit over-powered.

I am thinking the same, but I need more runs to be sure. I mean, you can get OP with a mage as well, so it's more making sure they would be on par with each other. I need to do more runs to see if the Archer becomes OP every time or not. The problem with the archer is that he has limited choice of weapons and upgrades only upgrade damage. The fix will probably be to just lower the bow damage across all the bows, so that a single arrow shot does less damage and you need to fire more.

Quote
Anyhow - I've finished the guide section on achievements and challenge modes, so that's another thing done :) I'm still meaning to write a short feature suggestions list now the main version is done, I'll hopefully finish that in the next few days and finish adding the flavour text to the monster guide as well.

A few tips that might be worth adding:

The Pyromancer in Safety Escort is always in a shop, so getting a silver coin on levels 1 or 2 is a really good idea. Once you reach the castle, you can simply teleport to him.

It is recommended that you kill the Necromancer boss before going into the catacombs for the Eye of Ramana. You can kill a couple of Vampiress shopkeepers and raise them before going into the old catacombs and with the staff you can revive them when they die and raise new ones. They have a lot of HP and can help you do the quest even with a weaker character. The drop rate for the Staff of the Dead is 100% until you unlock this achievement.

A good room to do the Lord of Thunder, Marksman and Bomberman is the throne room after the castle boss fight. Let the King summon a bunch of guards and then cast the Peace spell. If you have the slowdown scroll or a pogonip staff, slowing them down is a plus. Now you have a bunch of peaceful, slow moving targets and you can do it easily.

Buffed can be done with Mana Canteen + Twilight staff, or even Twilight Staff + Bare Bones amulet + a dozen mana potions.

Athlete can easily be done with a Mana Canteen. Just grab a staff from one of the Wizards in the castle and speed your self up. With some luck, it's also doable without Mana Canteen in some runs if you stack up on the mana potions.

Once the players finish the Eye of Ramana quest, Dracula becomes hard to do because of low drop rate of the Staff of the Dead. Since the old catacombs don't spawn every time, the chance is about 14% to even have all the prerequisites to try it and you won't know until you reach the 5th level. Because of this I added a hint, you can press F1 when you show up at the start in the forest and it will say "Dracula possible" or "Dracula not possible" near the end of the log.

For Magic Casters using the Meteor staff or Stormbringer is a good idea because you can hide behind the obstacles and kill the enemies while staying safe yourself. Ethereal bow is also useful for that, but it's much harder to obtain.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on May 26, 2018, 02:11:23 PM
Hmm, I feel like losing bow damage just makes bows less different to staffs and thus a less unique/interesting weapon to play with. I think a better fix might be to just make the base archery stat upgrades a bit less large?

EDIT: Added the additional details to the achievement hunting section :)

EDIT #2: I finally got round to writing up my "random ideas for the game" list: https://exilian.co.uk/forum/index.php?topic=5636
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on May 27, 2018, 12:18:26 AM
EDIT #2: I finally got round to writing up my "random ideas for the game" list: https://exilian.co.uk/forum/index.php?topic=5636

Great ideas! I already had something similar (Paladin, Bushido you can hire at a fixed cost per battle, something very similar to King Cobra Staff, etc.) I also love the idea of buffing your allied troops.

I will make many of these for sure.

The current focus is getting the Nintendo Switch port going, but after that I plan to start adding new stuff.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on May 27, 2018, 12:23:34 AM
Hmm, I feel like losing bow damage just makes bows less different to staffs and thus a less unique/interesting weapon to play with. I think a better fix might be to just make the base archery stat upgrades a bit less large?

I just had a run where I blasted through all the the rocks in levels 2 and beyond (early bare bones + mana canteen + earthquake staff), got all the runestones (incl. the baseball room) and only did about 140 damage per shot to the final boss. I didn't feel any more powerful than a mage/knight would with those upgrades. I didn't get any of the archery upgrades, so it does feel like simply lowering those would work.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on May 31, 2018, 08:29:08 AM
I had an interesting run a couple of days back. Managed to do 100k in the daily challenge and 50k gold without having the old catacombs. I had bare bones amulet + retort + foundry and one of the potions was avarice. The Lizard pet enabled me to create 2 potions per room and I also took the Earthquake staff and blasted rocks for arrows (at x10 avarice it's 500 gold per arrow stack).
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on May 31, 2018, 10:44:50 AM
What's the best way to turn a replay file into a video? Do I just have to re-run it with a screen capture program, or is there a better way?

And yes, the more I think about it, the more I agree on the archery upgrades. At present because they give such a huge upgrade kick, if a player found a crossbow early on (especially with 1-2 replicators) then it could very easily become the case that switching to an archery playstyle made sense regardless of character class.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on May 31, 2018, 11:21:34 AM
What's the best way to turn a replay file into a video? Do I just have to re-run it with a screen capture program, or is there a better way?

Yes, that's the only way.

I recommend OBS, it's very easy to use and video quality is great on high settings. If you have an nVidia graphics card, and performance is a problem, set the encoder to NVENC and it will have almost no impact on your system.

Quote
And yes, the more I think about it, the more I agree on the archery upgrades. At present because they give such a huge upgrade kick, if a player found a crossbow early on (especially with 1-2 replicators) then it could very easily become the case that switching to an archery playstyle made sense regardless of character class.

Alright, I will adjust those. New version with some changes and fixes is coming today or tomorrow. One notable change is fixing the Medusa sword damage  and her sword attack animation. She now does 24 damage with the sword. As she does a combo hit similar to the Vampiress, she can do 48 damage during a single attack if you aren't careful.

Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: Jubal on May 31, 2018, 11:31:09 AM
Yeah, the quality isn't so much the issue as the time - I was going to get a video of my 100000+pt challenge run from yesterday, but it took over two hours and I don't have a two-hour slot when I can give up my computer in the next few days!
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Castle Crashers meets Isaac
Post by: bigosaur on May 31, 2018, 12:20:45 PM
Yeah, the quality isn't so much the issue as the time - I was going to get a video of my 100000+pt challenge run from yesterday, but it took over two hours and I don't have a two-hour slot when I can give up my computer in the next few days!

Better check if the recording is complete. I had a 2 hour run and it didn't fit into the default 2GB replay file size, so the end of the run was cut off. I have increased the setting to 4GB on my computer since, but if you left it at default value, it's possible you don't have the whole run recorded.

The quickest way to check is just to check the replay file size. Or you can watch in-game and keep pressing right during replay to rewind.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Devlog and general discussion
Post by: bigosaur on June 16, 2018, 01:49:32 PM
Some of the players asked me why is there no wiki or online manual, and then I realized that not everyone is looking in Steam discussion forums.

So, I added the link to Exilian directly on the Son of a Witch store page on Steam. Because of this, I made the Monster Manual and Guides sticky topics as well, so the players can see those on top easily.

BTW, the Nintendo Switch port is almost done. I'm extensively testing it and waiting for Nintendo to look over some paperwork before I can publish it. If all goes as planned, the release will be mid-August.


Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Devlog and general discussion
Post by: Jubal on June 26, 2018, 07:55:07 PM
Thanks :) Hopefully more people will find/use the guides now... I think they're mostly complete though there's always more I could add.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Devlog and general discussion
Post by: bigosaur on July 31, 2018, 02:15:32 PM
Version 3.6.7 is online:

Translation improvements:
- The game has been fully translated to Polish (thanks Telmah)
- Many other translations have been updated with Achievement descriptions and other improvements
- Improved support for Japanese translation

Difficulty balancing:
- Due to very high DPS, the Archer starting HP is reduced to 80.
- Increased base damage of Snake Staff to 7.
- Increased base damage of Fireball Staff to 7.
- Increased base damage of Healer Staff to 7.

New features:
- Added an option to skip the intro story (and go straight into the main menu)
- Faster loading times
- Prevent players running out of bombs during tutorial (if you accidentally spend all, more bombs get spawned)

Bugfixes:
- Fixed bug when pets appear to just stand at the door to remote players
- Fixed bug when remote players seem to be firing arrows constantly when they are actually not shooting at all
- Prevent erasing achievements on first Steam login
- Selection of tips to show on loading screen depends on the screen resolution (if there's a lot of text and the screen is only 720p, some of the tips are skipped)
- Fixed crash when entering empty /seed command
- NPC dialogue prompt (press button to continue) now only shows up when the player is close enough for it to actually work

This version is still mostly balancing, bug fixes and translation update. I plan to work on more interesting gameplay features (new items, weapons, quests, mechanics) as soon as the Nintendo Switch port is released, which should be within the next two months.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Devlog and general discussion
Post by: Jubal on July 31, 2018, 03:58:01 PM
I just played a game for the first time in a while. I can still pretty smoothly cruise through a regular game despite being out of practice, which is nice :) Had a knight and did a standard sweep + stop setup. Ice level/snowman boss was a bit tricky as I had no immunity or footing, but I was pumping out so much damage that it didn't matter too much.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Devlog and general discussion
Post by: bigosaur on August 01, 2018, 01:16:12 PM
I just played a game for the first time in a while. I can still pretty smoothly cruise through a regular game despite being out of practice, which is nice :) Had a knight and did a standard sweep + stop setup. Ice level/snowman boss was a bit tricky as I had no immunity or footing, but I was pumping out so much damage that it didn't matter too much.

I feel like the game has become too easy with all the recent changes. Perhaps I should remove some annoying things from hard mode (mainly the cursed keys) and have that be the default for us hardcore players ;) and maybe have another mode, called "dread mode" or something like that which will be really tough.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Devlog and general discussion
Post by: Jubal on August 01, 2018, 05:01:42 PM
Hm. I'm not sure that would solve the issue per se - yes, if I want things to be arbitrarily more difficult I could play on hard mode, but I don't tend to find that much more fun per se. I tend to find that what I want out of the game is more different tactical problems to face rather than just faster/stronger enemies per se. Though I guess that's a playstyle thing, I'd prefer to see the roguelike element be where difficulty is added if anywhere rather than the beat 'em up element/ramping up speeds and stats.

I really liked the thing Pixel Dungeon did where they had "special enemies" on each level which were very rare upgrades on the regular ones which could provide a real surprise and force you to switch how you were playing because they had some immunity or special attack etc that the regular versions of the enemies didn't use. So for SoaW there could be say a Goblin General enemy who'd occasionally appear with maybe 150 health and the ability to move with a shield, or an Assassin enemy which did the same thing as the thief but had poisoned throwing knives. That sort of thing I think would be a better addition: it wouldn't hugely affect the difficulty for most players, especially as it might just persuade them to stay away from certain rooms, but it would also provide more interesting variations to deal with for advanced players. I think things like that which will sometimes provide surprises and extra challenges could be incorporated into the main game fine and would provide more of an extra challenge than. You could also make their spawning dependent on certain achievements I guess so only good players got to face them, which might be less complex than a whole extra game mode (I think there's enough of those already: an extra would be too many.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Devlog and general discussion
Post by: Jubal on August 11, 2018, 03:21:02 PM
I noticed a bit of glitching in the latest version, when playing the daily challenge - not a consistent slowdown, just the game freezing for a quarter-second or so, once or twice a minute, long enough to be noticeable.

I also tried some MP with some random folks on Steam - we got as far as the final level, which given we did it without mics and indeed without communication in general was pretty good - by the final level we just hadn't stocked up enough potions or planned ahead enough for it to be workable, I think the later levels do need some planning as a MP team.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Devlog and general discussion
Post by: bigosaur on August 11, 2018, 05:41:51 PM
I noticed a bit of glitching in the latest version, when playing the daily challenge - not a consistent slowdown, just the game freezing for a quarter-second or so, once or twice a minute, long enough to be noticeable.

I don't think it's anything related to the latest changes (which have nothing to do with the game performance or such). I have seen the same problem with some people streaming the game on Twitch in earlier versions as well. And I have also seen the problem on one of my computers (the desktop one with nVidia card) a couple of times. I believe it's a graphics driver issue, because I have seen it with a couple other games as well on that computer (for example Dark Souls 3). It doesn't happen often, maybe once per month. On my other computer that has Intel Iris Pro, it never happened.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Devlog and general discussion
Post by: bigosaur on August 15, 2018, 02:05:08 PM
Did the problem happen to you again since the last time? If it does, please let me know.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Devlog and general discussion
Post by: bigosaur on August 17, 2018, 11:29:15 PM
I'm happy to announce that Son of a Witch launches on Nintendo Switch on September 4th (in American eShop). I will probably do a EU release soon, I just need to have all the translations completed.

(http://bigosaur.com/blog/images/soaw_600x338_switch.png)

The Switch version is the same as the current Steam version except for some Steam-related features like leaderboards (there's no daily challenge) and it's local co-op only. I plan to add these features as well in the long run. It's my first time releasing a game on a console, so I'm still learning how everything works.

Achievements are in (Switch is the main reason why I added that achievement screen in the main menu).
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Devlog and general discussion
Post by: Jubal on August 19, 2018, 04:51:49 PM
I got some gltching again in today's Daily Challenge.

Though on the plus side, I think I may have broken my record for highest damage per hit: 5750 points in a single hit, using an upgraded Ringleader's Hammer with over 1000% boost from money is power :)
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Devlog and general discussion
Post by: bigosaur on August 20, 2018, 01:14:24 PM
I got some gltching again in today's Daily Challenge.

I guess I could try to add some additional checks to try to prevent this in the next version.

How does it glitch? Does it looks like your whole computer freezes? Can you Alt+Tab back into Desktop when this happens?
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Devlog and general discussion
Post by: Jubal on August 21, 2018, 09:31:26 PM
The glitches I've had have been too quick to work out if it's the whole computer or to tab out - it just looks like the game picture freezing entirely, only for a part of a second, but long enough for it to be jarring especially in a fast-paced battle and to throw off my timing when I'm fighting. It doesn't seem that consistent either - I didn't notice it at all today.

EDIT: just started today's daily challenge and this one's really glitchy :(
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Devlog and general discussion
Post by: bigosaur on August 22, 2018, 12:41:10 PM
EDIT: just started today's daily challenge and this one's really glitchy :(

I don't know. I haven't changed anything in that area for months, and there are no other players reporting similar issues. Could it be that you have something running in the background (like anti-virus or firewall program) that causes sudden spikes of CPU usage or something like that?

Also, try disabling recording of games if you have it enabled. Recording is resource intensive, so maybe that's the problem.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Devlog and general discussion
Post by: bigosaur on August 23, 2018, 09:32:25 PM
I'm preparing and testing some new stuff:

- Rogue is practically ready, the "quest" to unlock him is rather simple (just blow out some rocks in the dungeon) because I want beginner players to have access quickly. I tried a couple of runs, and it's great because you can mix and match melee and archery better than any other hero
- A new themed area on the battlements where a redhead warrior challenges you to a duel and drops some useful items (sometimes drops the sword)
- Bushido NPC (mercenary) now sits in the tavern and gives you an item that allows you to summon bushidos for 120 gold. The summoned unit doesn't leave the room and is allied to the player. Only works in non-boss rooms.
- A bunch of new potion effects: vampirism gives HP for kills, confidence gives damage bonus when full HP, pickpocket gives gold after each battle but wears off if you get hit

Other stuff planned in this batch:

- A room in the castle with enemy portraits. You can pick one of them to be your "sworn enemy" and you would do double damage to such units until the end of the game
- Vampire Slayer NPC quest (from Jubal ideas thread)
- Dwarf NPC with multiple roles and appearances: 1. shopkeeper on the ice level, 2. special ice shop where he sells runestones for 500gold each, 3. a special room in the forest (or on the battlements) where he acts as a blacksmith and turns weapons into runestones
- Sticky bombs: bombs that glue to the enemy

I'm still not sure how the sticky bombs should work. One idea is to just add sticky-ness to regular bombs, but regular bombs are rarely used to kill enemies anyway. Another idea is to have a special type of bomb that only hurts enemies and you can drop them and then get the enemies to walk into them and get glued to them until they explode. Or maybe, have a pet that randomly drops such bombs on the screen and you have to lure the enemies into them.

Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Devlog and general discussion
Post by: Jubal on August 23, 2018, 11:04:01 PM
Is Vampirism a status effect, and does it stack? I feel like it sounds like it should have a drawback - vampirism usually isn't a positive thing so it would feel strange if it were just a benefit you really wanted to get. Maybe it slowly loses you health (speed similar to hunger) if you have the effect active on any of the outdoor levels (1, 2, 6, 7) without a darkness scroll/staff activated. I like the sound of confidence - again, stacking? Pickpocket sounds really fun.

Regarding the sticky bombs... I wonder if having a pet that dropped what are basically mines would work, where they go off as soon as an enemy walks onto them? (Or even an enemy or friend, if you wanted to make them a bit more dangerous!)

120 gold really feels a lot for something that only affects one room, gives no permanent bonus, and can't be used on bosses, but that may just be me?
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Devlog and general discussion
Post by: bigosaur on August 24, 2018, 10:10:29 AM
Is Vampirism a status effect, and does it stack?

It does. But the effect is rather weak, so I don't feel like it can become OP unless you get a Retort or something like that and drink 10+ such potions.

I have also changed the Vampire Sword to give you HP on every hit instead of kill. It makes it much more enjoyable to use, especially in co-op where you don't have to yell at your ally for dealing the final blows to enemies ;)

Quote
Maybe it slowly loses you health (speed similar to hunger) if you have the effect active on any of the outdoor levels (1, 2, 6, 7) without a darkness scroll/staff activated.

That would be reasonable and very cool, but somehow I find such complicated mechanics hard to explain to players, esp. since I like to keep the text for potion effects as short as possible. It would also be good to prevent players getting HP from bloodless enemies (skeletons, slimes, etc.). If only the game were full RPG, I would have added all the complex mechanics on top as well.

Quote
I like the sound of confidence - again, stacking?

Yes, +20% to all skills per potion. But only active while you're full HP.

It makes a nice decision dilemma when you're almost at full health and don't want to spend a healing potion to heal, say 3HP, but doing so would give you a +60% damage boost for example.

Quote
Regarding the sticky bombs... I wonder if having a pet that dropped what are basically mines would work, where they go off as soon as an enemy walks onto them? (Or even an enemy or friend, if you wanted to make them a bit more dangerous!)

I feel like it might be hard to track if they went off immediately. Maybe a combination would be a good idea: a pet places them on the ground and they are inactive until an enemy walks into the bomb. Then it glues to the enemy and starts ticking and explodes a couple of seconds later.

I guess I'll have to add it to the game and test to see what feels the best.

Quote
120 gold really feels a lot for something that only affects one room, gives no permanent bonus, and can't be used on bosses, but that may just be me?

Initial idea was to be able to use it on a boss as well. But then I tried to play a couple of games with it and the attack speed of the Bushido stun-locks all the small boss types (violent knights, trickster, dragon master, etc.) to the point the boss fights become trivial (esp. if you summon two of them in the same room).

The main use is if you get into late game (ice, desert) with low damage output, but have a lot of gold (it's usually in the 1500-3000 range for me) that you cannot spend otherwise anyway. So, summoning those to get through some tough rooms can be a life saver.

Maybe I should lower the price. It needs testing, of course.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Devlog and general discussion
Post by: Jubal on August 24, 2018, 06:26:44 PM
If you put some of the things on a testing branch thingy on Steam I'm happy to give them a couple of runs for you :)
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Devlog and general discussion
Post by: bigosaur on August 25, 2018, 12:47:22 PM
If you put some of the things on a testing branch thingy on Steam I'm happy to give them a couple of runs for you :)

I will, but not yet. The new things are few and far in between, so it may take more than a couple of runs to see it all. I want to add all the new stuff first, and then I will put it all in the beta branch for testing for a longer time (say, a month before officially releasing).
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Devlog and general discussion
Post by: Jubal on August 27, 2018, 11:15:29 AM
Fair enough - looking forward to it, anyhow. :)

Regarding general game balance, could the portable foundry become a rarer item? I just increasingly find it makes the game less fun, because so often it becomes the right move to focus on a portable foundry + money is power combo to the exclusion of anything else tactical (and once you're buffed properly with that, it doesn't even matter what your starting character class was because your stats are all 400 or 500 so the 50% difference between your melee and magic isn't so relevant any more). I think it's just a bit too dominant a strategy at the moment - I'd rather the foundry became something quite rare, like only a reward for certain special rooms so you wouldn't get it most games.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Devlog and general discussion
Post by: bigosaur on August 27, 2018, 08:47:10 PM
Regarding general game balance, could the portable foundry become a rarer item?

Sure.

Also, I am adding more items, so the drop rate will be lower anyway. And I'm also adding 3 new potions, so "Money Is Power" won't show up so often.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Devlog and general discussion
Post by: bigosaur on August 27, 2018, 08:50:41 PM
Your stats are all 400 or 500 so the 50% difference between your melee and magic isn't so relevant any more)

Maybe I should change the way it works?

Instead of adding up percentages, it could apply the percentage to the skill level. Example:

100 magic, 30 melee, 70 archery + 500% money is power would give +500% magic, +150% melee and +350% archery, so the skills would become: 600/180/420.

I could do the same for Darkness and Confidence as well.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Devlog and general discussion
Post by: Jubal on August 27, 2018, 11:17:40 PM
Your stats are all 400 or 500 so the 50% difference between your melee and magic isn't so relevant any more)

Maybe I should change the way it works?

Instead of adding up percentages, it could apply the percentage to the skill level. Example:

100 magic, 30 melee, 70 archery + 500% money is power would give +500% magic, +150% melee and +350% archery, so the skills would become: 600/180/420.

I could do the same for Darkness and Confidence as well.


That's a great idea, and one I am +100% in favour of! :)
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Devlog and general discussion
Post by: bigosaur on September 08, 2018, 09:07:23 PM
If you put some of the things on a testing branch thingy on Steam I'm happy to give them a couple of runs for you :)

It's ready. In case you forgot, the password is "minimum89012".

It contains all the changes I plan for the next version: Rogue hero, a couple new achievements, new potions, mercenaries you can hire, machine that turns weapons into runestones, dwarf merchant, vampire slayer NPC, etc., etc.

I now need to do extensive testing, esp. if everything syncs up properly in online multiplayer games. If you notice any bugs let me know.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Devlog and general discussion
Post by: Jubal on September 09, 2018, 11:43:08 AM
Which level is the rogue unlock quest on? I just did a playthrough and didn't find it.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Devlog and general discussion
Post by: bigosaur on September 09, 2018, 12:49:16 PM
Which level is the rogue unlock quest on? I just did a playthrough and didn't find it.

In the dungeon. It's a 50% chance, so you should see him in 2-3 runs.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Devlog and general discussion
Post by: Jubal on September 12, 2018, 11:25:14 PM
OK, initial thoughts:

> I'm not getting shown the new skin for the vampire hunter, it's still showing the usual castle guard and I don't know why.

> I've still not completed the vampire hunting quest, I think it's too hard for a sidequest. She usually gets pinned down by the bats, and cutting the bats out from round her without killing the vampiress. Also, I've seen vampiresses use their disrupting attack to just kill her. Like, I'm sure the quest is do-able (maybe with a peace scroll), but I think it feels more like the difficulty of a character unlocking quest than a standard sidequest right now.

> I like the battlements duel scene, that's really cool, as is the runestone smelter. Both are quite easy/cheap in their bonuses, but they're both nice additions.

> Having someone in the tavern finally is great. I've not used the bronze glove yet but it's a cool idea anyway.

> I like all the new potions. Vampire Blood I think might be a bit overly powerful, I'd make it +2 per potion not +3. I feel like maybe one extra negative potion is needed in the mix to balance the good new stuff out. Maybe a "weakness" status effect that knocks your stats down by 25% for 2-3 battles or something.

> Dwarfs! They're great :) The only thing I found odd here was them all having the same name on the ice level. Like with the human shopkeepers you can ignore it as they move because they're never duplicated on the same level, and the vampiresses and bandit shopkeepers aren't named anyway; for the dwarfs it would be nice to have the different shops use different names, or maybe just call them all "dwarf shopkeeper".

The Rogue:

> I was quite surprised when I found the rogue, mostly because I was remembering back and expecting the rogue type character in this older game poster:
Spoiler (click to show/hide)
The new guy looks fine anyway :) Though I feel like he could maybe do with a face-scarf, and perhaps a different skin tone or something, to make him a bit more different to the other characters so far? I can always add those to my version of course!

> I've enjoyed playing with the rogue mostly, completed the game fine, etc

> It feels off that the sneak attack doesn't work with throwing weapons, both because that caught me out the first time or two and secondly because this means I always ditch the throwing knife, despite it being the archetypal rogue weapon, as soon as I get even a goblin sword. Its melee attack is slow, the rogue doesn't have 100 melee anyway and the rogue finds archery stuff in chests so the throwing attack is less good than just finding a bow, etc. I feel like something should be done to stop throwing weapons actually being really underpowered as an option for the rogue compared to swords.

> Because the throwing knife is a hard to use weapon with its close quarters attack (simply because it's slow so timing is hard), the rogue is actually for me an unusually difficult early game character to use at the moment. I can manage it, but it's definitely trickier than most others.

> Also odd that the rogue sword isn't useful to the rogue because they duplicate the ability. Maybe if the rogue uses it they should get double the hiding time or +50% sneak bonus or both, so it's still a really good weapon for the rogue to have?

> In mid levels, the combo of Violet Sword and rogue is amazing - pop out of hiding, immediately kill a couple of people, bam, rage refilled, back into hiding again. That's VERY good fun :)
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Devlog and general discussion
Post by: bigosaur on September 13, 2018, 10:05:23 AM
I'm not getting shown the new skin for the vampire hunter, it's still showing the usual castle guard and I don't know why.

Check the gfx/squire/squire-elite.png file. Does it show the blue skin or the red one?

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She usually gets pinned down by the bats, and cutting the bats out from round her without killing the vampiress.

One approach that I find working well so far is to bomb the shop door (or use the escape scroll / rogue keyring), trigger the battle and kill most of the bats while avoiding the vampiress. Then go outside for the Vampire Hunter and come back to fight the vampiress together.

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The only thing I found odd here was them all having the same name on the ice level.

Yes, I need to fix that. I also have a variant with different hair/beard color, so I should mix that in as well. Added to my TODO list.

Quote
The new guy looks fine anyway :) Though I feel like he could maybe do with a face-scarf, and perhaps a different skin tone or something, to make him a bit more different to the other characters so far? I can always add those to my version of course!

If you make something really nice, I might replace the one in the game with your variant  :)

Quote
It feels off that the sneak attack doesn't work with throwing weapons

It should. Sounds like a bug. I need to check that. By "doesn't work" do you mean that the Rogue doesn't want to hide into barrel when you use the rage attack? (which would be a bug) Or maybe the fact that there's no damage bonus? (which works as expected, but I could change it).

Quote
I always ditch the throwing knife

Backstab melee sneak-attack does 150+ damage. It's my favorite weapon to kill bosses. Also, great for big enemies (Orc, Yeti, Vampiress, even Bushido), knock them down, stomp, and then when they get up, they pause for a second. Enough time to backstab them and knock down again for the final stomp.

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I feel like something should be done to stop throwing weapons actually being really underpowered as an option for the rogue compared to swords.

Well, I could add the sneak-attack bonus for those as well. I might try and see how it feels.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Devlog and general discussion
Post by: Jubal on September 13, 2018, 10:23:03 AM
I can see the elite skin, it looks right (and blue), but the game seems to be using the base (non elite) file. I even tried replacing the regular captain with a skin of my own, and the vampire hunter still switched to that, so it just seems to be using the wrong file.

OK, I'll try that strategy for the quest. I'm still wondering if the vampire hunter needs some kind of extra thing so that if you do get her into contact with the Vampire and clear away the bats she isn't going to get killed by it so easily.

I forgot to mention the keys - they're kind of fun, though I almost never use them. I think it's mostly because I usually save up mana through the game in the hope of getting the mana canteen and being able to throw down some ridiculously powerful spellcasting late on (as the last two levels are the only places ingame that tend to have anything that bothers me, unless I overreach myself badly). And then I often drop the keys before I get there because other items seem more useful.

Well, I'll have some time later next week to play with variants on the rogue skin. :)

I meant that there's no damage bonus with the ranged attack - because the non-ranged attack is so slow on the throwing knife, when playing singleplayer it makes it quite a weak weapon for the rogue to use if you don't get the damage bonus on the throw. For me at least, the high damage if you can get the combo sorted doesn't counterbalance the fact that the attack speed is too slow and there's too much danger of me mistiming it and losing half my starting health to a goblin club! I think you're just a lot better at timing that combat attack than I am, but I suspect that if I find it difficult given the amount of practice I've had then a lot of other players will as well. You could probably have a lower sneak attack bonus for ranged weapons if that would help balance it - maybe 50 rather than 100 to start? Because of course if you get the carpenter emblem then you improve it, and so on. :)
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Devlog and general discussion
Post by: bigosaur on September 13, 2018, 12:31:29 PM
I can see the elite skin, it looks right (and blue), but the game seems to be using the base (non elite) file. I even tried replacing the regular captain with a skin of my own, and the vampire hunter still switched to that, so it just seems to be using the wrong file.

I managed to reproduce the problem now. Will fix it in the next update.

Quote
I forgot to mention the keys - they're kind of fun, though I almost never use them.

Well, they aren't meant to be super useful, it's just a starting item. It's nice to be able to unlock the treasure room (or two, if you bring it to the second level), which is similar to the effect you have from key/bomb starting item. I guess it would be really useful in various barbarian challenges and the hard mode (because of cursed keys).

Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Devlog and general discussion
Post by: Jubal on September 13, 2018, 12:40:37 PM
Yes, that's a good point. :)

I should finish up these other skins I've been making - I've got a themed variant to all the castle guards, and a variant on the druid skin, that I've still not released yet.

Also, why don't vampiresses drop silver coins when you buy all their stuff? It's odd that they're the only ones not to.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Devlog and general discussion
Post by: bigosaur on September 14, 2018, 08:03:04 AM
Also, why don't vampiresses drop silver coins when you buy all their stuff? It's odd that they're the only ones not to.

IIRC, there was some technical problem in the code (it's different because bats spawn instead of Bushidos) that would make them drop coins somewhat complicated in network games, so I disabled it until I get around to work on it.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Devlog and general discussion
Post by: bigosaur on September 16, 2018, 12:13:26 PM
The new guy looks fine anyway :) Though I feel like he could maybe do with a face-scarf

I played with this a little bit. The main problem is the potion drinking animation which either has to uncover the face or have him drink through the scarf and none of these look good. I have give up for now.

Quote
It feels off that the sneak attack doesn't work with throwing weapons

I changed this (to give +100 damage) and tried a couple of runs. It's way too powerful and also makes use of the backstab attacks even more rare than it should be. It does make sense to get some to extra sneak attack damage, but sometimes you're throwing a knife/hammer/axe across the whole room and the enemy is looking at it for a couple of seconds before it hits - hardly a sneak attack.

At +50 damage it makes more sense, but I feel like the whole thing is getting even more complicated with additional rules. Esp. if you don't know the special +50 rule, it feels like the damage bonus drops too fast. I think I'm going to leave it as it is, and wait for more players to give feedback before changing.

The Rogue Sword is still useful for Rogue. It gives 30 seconds of concealment, while the regular rogue skill gives you only 10.

I have also changed the dwarfs, so only the one with the smelter machine has a special name. Others are just "Dwarf Miner".
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Devlog and general discussion
Post by: bigosaur on September 21, 2018, 09:42:13 AM
(http://bigosaur.com/blog/images/soaw-rogue-vampireslayer.png)

Version 3.7.3 is online:

- new hero class: Rogue. Special ability is to use the sneak attack as the special attack with any melee weapon. You can still use the weapon's regular rage attack if you use it in the off-hand slot. He also has a special item that can unlock any door (except boss room doors), so you can unlock treasure rooms and escape tough battles
- Added a bunch of new achievements
- New potion: Vampire blood (get HP from kills. Multiple potions stack)
- New potion: Pickpocket (earn extra gold until you get hit. Stacks)
- New potion: Confidence (deal extra damage when full HP. Stacks)
- Added a new combat item: Sticky bombs. You can plant these as traps. When an enemy walks into one, it activates.
- Added a new pet: Racoon, who randomly drops sticky bombs across the room
- Added a new special room in the castle: the Gallery Room. This room is filled with enemy portraits and you can pick your favorite enemy to do double damage to them.

New NPCs:

- Join the Vampire Slayer NPC in the catacombs and help her kill a vampiress or the vampire boss for reward
- Dwarfs now sell stuff in the ice level
- Dwarven Blacksmith shows up sometimes and gives you ability to smelt weapons into runestones which are used to upgrade other weapons
- Mercenary NPC in the castle tavern gives you an item which can be used to hire mercenaries for fixed amount of gold. DON'T TOUCH HIS BEER!
- Vampire Sword now gives HP while hitting enemies (instead of on-kill)
- A Redhead Warrior NPC might challenge you for a duel on the battlements

Tweaks and improvements:

- Redhead Warriors in the desert now buff their swords before doing the petrify attack
- Disabled invulnerability frames for revival in dungeon shops
- Reviving in regular game now gives 41HP instead of 61HP
- Celestial Hammer rage attack now strikes all enemies in the room
- Darkness, Confidence, Money is Power, Mega Boost effects scale the skill percentage instead of adding to it. For example, if you have 50% melee and 100% darkness, it results in 100% melee skill (not 150%).
- fixed bug when the remote player could join the game twice (i.e. two heroes would show up) if (s)he pressed the button twice too quickly
- fixed bug then Steam library is installed in a path with non-ASCII characters
- minor fixes and tweaks to UI
- updated some of the translations
- dialogue in the intro story now supports translations
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Devlog and general discussion
Post by: Jubal on September 21, 2018, 09:52:21 PM
Nice :)

I exhausted myself doing too much at a politics conference and my reaction times are now too slow and my muscles too taut to play games properly, I've got fatigue symptoms so I keep messing up simple stuff :( Hopefully I'll be back functioning in a few days.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Devlog and general discussion
Post by: bigosaur on September 21, 2018, 09:58:41 PM
I exhausted myself doing too much at a politics conference and my reaction times are now too slow and my muscles too taut to play games properly, I've got fatigue symptoms so I keep messing up simple stuff :(

This version is pretty much the same as the beta one you played (just some minor tweaks), so don't sweat about it. Get some rest.

BTW, I have a new game coming up. A simple and short programming puzzle game (actually, more about hacking CPUs and machine code than writing programs). It's a small project I have been working on and off whenever I got tired of doing the same thing (i.e. Son of a Witch) and now it's very close to being a fully playable game. I'll take a couple of weeks to push some final game mechanics and puzzles and release it. I will open a new thread in the forums as soon as I have some beta test version or a trailer to show.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Devlog and general discussion
Post by: Jubal on September 24, 2018, 12:37:11 AM
Managed the rare combo of bare bones + mana canteen + necro staff recently :) Having a full size undead army of 50 or so units is really fun - and impressive too, getting a volley of arrows and then the warriors rushing forward, with King Salamis plodding along behind to deliver bigger punches.

(https://i.imgur.com/k2hs2C9.jpg)
(https://i.imgur.com/OQU9ZtT.jpg)
(https://i.imgur.com/OXgZfFU.png)
(https://i.imgur.com/PAto7BO.png)
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Devlog and general discussion
Post by: bigosaur on September 24, 2018, 07:16:23 AM
Managed the rare combo of bare bones + mana canteen + necro staff recently :) Having a full size undead army of 50 or so units is really fun - and impressive too, getting a volley of arrows and then the warriors rushing forward, with King Salamis plodding along behind to deliver bigger punches.

Epic!  :o

As I see, it managed to drop your framerate below 60fps as well.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Devlog and general discussion
Post by: Jubal on September 24, 2018, 10:46:11 AM
That's actually happening not too infrequently lately :/ I'm not sure if there's an optimisation problem somewhere or if my computer's just slowed down a bit.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Devlog and general discussion
Post by: bigosaur on September 24, 2018, 11:51:51 AM
That's actually happening not too infrequently lately :/ I'm not sure if there's an optimisation problem somewhere or if my computer's just slowed down a bit.

Well, there are many things layered on top of the game compared to a year before for example. A couple of checks for this and that, all the new features. It slowly piles up. It isn't noticeable for a handful of sprites, but once you've got dozens of them... I did some optimizations, especially for guards which are much easier to spawn, but overall the game wasn't designed for so many units on the screen from the start.

Also, before the official release (when leaving Early Access) I did a major revamp of every room to add in more details (rocks, debris, blood stains, etc.). These all go into the sprite array when calculating the draw order and when you have dozens of units moving around it hurts performance. But the game looks much better with all the added stuff, so I don't plan to remove it.

If it becomes an issue, you can change some of the graphics settings to improve performance: reduce the ground particle count to 2-3 and disable item hover particles completely.

The only thing that isn't really the game's fault are those random lockups. It never happens to me on Intel GPU computer, so it must be something with the graphics card (I did see it on nVIDIA). BTW, I tried to add a possible workaround for that and it's in the version 3.7.3. Did you see the lockup problem in the latest version?
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Devlog and general discussion
Post by: Jubal on September 25, 2018, 03:11:02 PM
I've not noticed it yet, so it may be fixed, I'll let you know :)

I still think the vampire hunter quest is too hard - I've still not completed it, even when I carefully remove all the bats the Vampiress seems to be able to just happily take down Jolanda :/ I feel like at the moment it would be the right difficulty for eg a character unlock level quest, but to me it still feels too hard for a regular sidequest, especially as you can't resurrect Jolanda with the life staff if she dies.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Devlog and general discussion
Post by: bigosaur on September 25, 2018, 04:11:12 PM
I've not noticed it yet, so it may be fixed, I'll let you know :)

I still think the vampire hunter quest is too hard - I've still not completed it, even when I carefully remove all the bats the Vampiress seems to be able to just happily take down Jolanda :/ I feel like at the moment it would be the right difficulty for eg a character unlock level quest, but to me it still feels too hard for a regular sidequest, especially as you can't resurrect Jolanda with the life staff if she dies.

I just did a test run yesterday and was able to do it easily. The trick was to hit the vampiress once so that she starts to chase me and then keep running from her until Jolanda kills her. Running back and forth close to Jolanda does the job. This puts is at 2 successes from the last 3 runs I tried (66%), and I kind of feel that it should be doable almost every time, esp. if you use some help (peace scroll, freeze staff/hammer, earthquake staff to knock vamp down, etc.). I need to play more before I decide. The reward is 3 blood runestones, so I feel like it has to be a tricky challenge.

Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Devlog and general discussion
Post by: Jubal on September 25, 2018, 09:47:47 PM
I think part of my trouble is that if I've played OK, by that point in the game it's really quite hard for me not to end up accidentally killing the vampire myself! I'll get there eventually I guess. But I'd stil be tempted to a) let you resurrect Jolanda and and/or b) go the whole hog and make the drop a Book of Life.

I've finally got the VIP customer achievement - just reloaded the game a ton of times until I got the chest as my starting item, that seems to be the key to it.

I should probably update the guides with the new stuff...
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Devlog and general discussion
Post by: bigosaur on September 26, 2018, 08:19:23 AM
I've finally got the VIP customer achievement - just reloaded the game a ton of times until I got the chest as my starting item, that seems to be the key to it.

Getting Avarice early works too. That's how I did it. But I think it's also doable if you get the Pig pet and the Gilded Predator hammer in the first level.

Quote
I should probably update the guides with the new stuff...

I don't plan to add any significant changes soon (most likely not before December or so), so you can rely on things being stable.

Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Devlog and general discussion
Post by: Jubal on September 27, 2018, 05:34:45 PM
Major bug report, I finally got Jolanda to kill a vampiress... and didn't get the achievement. :( It was in the lower catacombs so that may be why? Also I think confusion was in play, so that may also explain it.

I'm just really annoyed now, it's taken me *ages* - I'm finding this on par with some of the harder special achievements. I still think it's considerably too difficult overall, in the shops the bats are more than a match for Jolanda, plus the Vampiress will usually kill Jolanda herself if she gets tagged onto her, and kite-ing the Vampiress without killing her is usually far too tricky to reliably do in one attempt for me, since the chance of me accidentally killing the vampiress myself is just too high. Could you maybe give Jolanda some level of immunity to the Vampiress' knockdown attack such that she shields herself and can block it? That would improve her odds a lot as long as you can get her one-on-one with the Vampiress. I still think you should be able to rez her with the life staff, too.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Devlog and general discussion
Post by: bigosaur on September 28, 2018, 09:46:46 AM
Major bug report, I finally got Jolanda to kill a vampiress... and didn't get the achievement. :( It was in the lower catacombs so that may be why? Also I think confusion was in play, so that may also explain it.

I don't get it. There's no special check for location or magic. The achievement unlocks when Jolanda hits the vampiress and her HP goes below 1. That's the only check.

Did Jolanda actually deal the final blow with her sword? Is it possible that something else killed the vamp? You mention confusion. Is it possible that some other unit (skeleton archer or mage) killed her with a projectile or maybe a bat dashed into her?

Quote
kite-ing the Vampiress without killing her is usually far too tricky to reliably do in one attempt for me

Remebering the way you play the game, yes I can imagine it being really hard as a lot of dodging and running is required.

I do it mostly by just running around and hitting the bats on the opposite side. And then just switching back and forth until only the vampiress is left. When I get Jolanda with me, I don't attack at all. I think I will record a short video of it today to show, it's hard to explain with words.

Quote
Could you maybe give Jolanda some level of immunity to the Vampiress' knockdown attack such that she shields herself and can block it? That would improve her odds a lot as long as you can get her one-on-one with the Vampiress. I still think you should be able to rez her with the life staff, too.

I just looked at the Steam achievement stats, and the number of people who have killed the vamp. is twice the number of players who got the VIP Customer achievement (which isn't *that* hard really). So I feel like the challenge level is fair.

You can heal her with the life staff when she gets low on health. She's got 300 HP, there's plenty of time.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Devlog and general discussion
Post by: Jubal on September 28, 2018, 10:25:47 AM
No, in this case it was definitely Jolanda who made the kill, everything else was dead and I was on the other side of the room. The Vampire was poisoned I think, but that can't reduce health to below one I don't think. It was pretty odd. I'm sorry I didn't think to get a replay, I was just annoyed at that point and went to do something else for a bit.

What I don't understand is how you get the Vampiress to chase you when you go back in with Jolanda if you're not attacking her? I've often just had the Vampiress go for her, at which point my options are to attack (and likely fail the quest by killing the Vampiress) or not attack (and fail anyway as the Vampiress just kills Jolanda).

But anyway, fair enough if other players are managing it. I just suspect it's a quest I'll often skip once I've completed it for the achievement; the cost of a bomb needed to get a  route out of the shop and clear the bats without Jolanda isn't honestly worth it for a quest I've got quite a low chance of completing, unless I have lots of spare bombs and usually I don't or am trying to save them for use on the ice level.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Devlog and general discussion
Post by: bigosaur on September 28, 2018, 12:45:34 PM
I just gave it a try in today's daily challenge and managed to do it in the second shop (without even killing the bats beforehand):


What I don't understand is how you get the Vampiress to chase you when you go back in with Jolanda if you're not attacking her?

When you attack her to trigger the bats, she should be already following you. You only need for her to switch to you again if she re-targets to Jolanda. Using some weak weapon is a good idea - in the video above I forgot about that and killed the vampiress in the first shop on accident because my damage was too high.

You can see how easily I cleared the bats in the first shop. In hindsight, I was lucky that the second shop was close by. I should have first cleared the path from one shop into another and also cleared the bats in the second shop before leading Jolanda, but I guess I was overconfident that I would be able to do it in the first shop.

If the achievement fails to trigger for you again, it would be really useful to see the replay. There must be some edge case that I'm not aware of.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Devlog and general discussion
Post by: Jubal on September 29, 2018, 05:19:12 PM
I feel like there must be something I'm forgetting about that run... maybe I had a pet and I'm forgetting it? That would explain it. I'm sure I didn't have the blowfish or bat, but I guess I might have had the ram and forgotten about it or something.

I decided to try and find a seed for a run with Jolanda on so, and so of course she hasn't appeared in the last 10 or so runs I've done.  :(
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Devlog and general discussion
Post by: Jubal on September 30, 2018, 04:04:37 PM
Finally got the achievement sorted - cleared out the bats, and I had a flaming sword so the vampire was on about 1hp by the time I left. Walked in the door and Jolanda one-hitted her almost immediately.

I feel like she should have some post-battle dialogue if that's possible, like e.g. the princesses do? Just like a "Thank you" or a "Here's a reward for your help, good luck on your quest!" or something.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Devlog and general discussion
Post by: bigosaur on September 30, 2018, 06:37:03 PM
I feel like she should have some post-battle dialogue if that's possible, like e.g. the princesses do? Just like a "Thank you" or a "Here's a reward for your help, good luck on your quest!" or something.

Good idea. I had it working and then it caused problems in network games, so I disabled until fixed and then forgot about that. I will work on it for the next version.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Devlog and general discussion
Post by: Jubal on September 30, 2018, 07:34:57 PM
Fair :)

Got a mention in for the newsletter: https://exilian.co.uk/forum/index.php?topic=5773
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Devlog and general discussion
Post by: Jubal on October 28, 2018, 09:29:41 PM
One of the oddities of the new multiplier system is that in some cases you can get absurd scores even higher than you used to be able to - check the magic stat on this run out:

(https://i.imgur.com/mpvKtZF.png)
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Devlog and general discussion
Post by: bigosaur on October 28, 2018, 09:40:13 PM
One of the oddities of the new multiplier system is that in some cases you can get absurd scores even higher than you used to be able to

At first I wasn't sure it was a consequence of the new system. But now that I look at it, the 850% bonus to 3000+ base skill...how on Earth did you get your base magic skill to 3160% ?!

Edit: Oh, looks like Bare Bones + Heavy Magic potions via retort? ... and +17% magic when you use mana... ridiculous combination.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Devlog and general discussion
Post by: Jubal on October 28, 2018, 09:46:00 PM
Yes, exactly. With that combination of potions plus bare bones amulet everything gets easy - the difficult bit is surviving a while after you use the BB amulet until you can boost your minimum health again, though if you have rabbit amulet + iron flesh potions (which I did here) that actually becomes quite easy as well.

I mean, I don't think it's actually necessarily a problem - the new system is more balanced on average, it just gets very, very broken if you can get the sort of really good combos I was working with there :) But I don't think it's much more broken to have 30,000 than 3,000 in a skill - once you're working with being at several thousand percent on something, you can just one-hit nearly everything anyway.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Devlog and general discussion
Post by: bigosaur on October 28, 2018, 09:47:31 PM
Yes, exactly. With that combination of potions plus bare bones amulet everything gets easy - the difficult bit is surviving a while after you use the BB amulet until you can boost your minimum health again, though if you have rabbit amulet + iron flesh potions (which I did here) that actually becomes quite easy as well.

I mean, I don't think it's actually necessarily a problem - the new system is more balanced on average, it just gets very, very broken if you can get the sort of really good combos I was working with there :) But I don't think it's much more broken to have 30,000 than 3,000 in a skill - once you're working with being at several thousand percent on something, you can just one-hit nearly everything anyway.

And I still see new players on Steam complaining the game is too hard.  >:(
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Devlog and general discussion
Post by: Jubal on October 28, 2018, 09:51:20 PM
They clearly haven't been using my game guides :P
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Devlog and general discussion
Post by: bigosaur on November 17, 2018, 10:10:31 AM
I'm making a short break from Son of a Witch development while waiting for Nintendo to approve some of the builds for the Switch version, and I'm contemplating a small action arcade stealth game, similar to pac-man, but in fantasy setting (something I can create in a month or two while waiting for Nintendo). I have a prototype that looks like this currently:

(http://bigosaur.com/blog/images/concept.png)

And now I'm stuck on the name. The game's story isn't determined yet, but it's probably going to be about a group of adventurers going into an abandoned castle or cursed castle or dungeon or vault to steal some gold and treasures. The enemies are skeletons (could be called warriors, but I'm not sure if I want them with swords or it's enough that they chase you down), skeleton mages (similar to warriors, there is no magic attack planned, but they will be smarter in chasing you down) and dogs.

So, the name can express ideas of undead, chasing/running, gold, treasure, tower/dungeon, etc.

Here are some ideas I have so far:

- Gold of the Necromancer
- Don't get Caught
- Necromancer's Trove
- Necromancer's Stash
- ???'s Dare
- Quest for the golden Duck (perhaps with a gold duck at the end level)
- Necromancer's Birthday Bash
- Wizard's Birthday Bash
- Gold of the Undead
- Shindig Glitz
- Escape from Undead Tower
- Undead Heist
- Undead Vault Heist
- Gold Rush Tower
- Tower Stormers
- Tower of Necromancer
- Undead King Tower

Some of the ideas I discarded:

- Skeleton Tower (apparently this has some special meaning in English?)
- Thieves of the Undead
- Hide and Sneak (taken: Disney game)
- Tower Heist (taken: a 2011 movie)
- Tower Raiders (taken: Android game)
- Vault Raiders (taken: itch.io game)

I'm currently using "Undead Heist" as a working title:

(http://bigosaur.com/blog/images/undeadheist.png)

Does that even sound good for you native speakers?

Any help or brainstorming ideas are very welcome!
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Devlog and general discussion
Post by: Jubal on November 19, 2018, 03:30:54 PM
Undead Heist sounds fine but isn't necessarily all that catchy. I actually quite like Quest for the Golden Duck, but i like games like this having a certain light hearted/silly element generally. I'll have a think and see if I can come up with anything else.

Btw, it looks like someone found an exploit on the daily challenge - no idea what, but the top scorer this month so far only seems to have played one game but has ten times anyone else's score.

Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Devlog and general discussion
Post by: bigosaur on December 07, 2018, 07:47:12 PM
Version 3.7.8. is up. The main change is support for new servers for online games, but there are also a couple of bug fixes:

- fixed bug with lightning based weapons being able to go through metal shields even when you did non-lightning attack

- fixed bug when item pickup info would show for dead players

I set up 3 new servers for online games.

In the past, all online games used to go through a server in Germany. This sometimes created latency problems for players outside of Europe. To solve this problem I got two additional servers, one for players in Asia, located in Hong Kong and another for players in the US, located in New York. I also got a new server for EU region.

You need to use version 3.7.8 of the game or above to use these new servers. The game host selects which one to use and guests will automatically get routed.

The old EU server for online games is being shut down by the end of this week. Make sure you update to version 3.7.8. if you want to play online multiplayer!
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Devlog and general discussion
Post by: bigosaur on December 07, 2018, 07:50:37 PM
Undead Heist sounds fine but isn't necessarily all that catchy. I actually quite like Quest for the Golden Duck

Thanks. I think I will go with the Quest for the Golden Duck and have a golden duck at the end of the game :) Undead Heist is so hard to remember.

I will have a playable beta version soon. I want to wrap this up by mid-January, so I can go back to adding stuff to Son of a Witch.

Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Devlog and general discussion
Post by: bigosaur on December 08, 2018, 06:45:27 PM
I spent an entire afternoon making the game logo in Inkscape:

(https://bigosaur.com/blog/images/duck-mainmenu640px.png)

Demo coming soon and I'll create a separate thread then.

BTW, I'm thinking about adding a new, alternate story to SoaW, with some new NPCs, some enemies shuffled around, and adding a new faction: Demons. Still not sure what would their main thing be, most probably different types of fire weapons.

The new story would unlock after you complete the game for the first time. It would deal with events after the heroes come back home with their mom. Demons set the whole village on fire and are fighting with goblins in the forest. Since you have the portal staff, you need to find the portal they are using to enter your world and shut it down. Goblins and king's guards are now your allies, but there are still remains of the great undead army roaming around. So you would be fighting demons and undead mostly in this mode.

This is just a rough sketch. If you have some cool ideas or twists, I'm all ears.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Devlog and general discussion
Post by: Jubal on December 08, 2018, 11:26:14 PM
Yeah, that sounds cool - I'd be up for playing most new SoaW twists :) Would this be separate to your eastern-theme storyline idea? And how many levels would you imagine for it?
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Devlog and general discussion
Post by: bigosaur on December 10, 2018, 10:49:51 AM
Would this be separate to your eastern-theme storyline idea?

Not sure yet. I think it will be integrated into the same storyline as I wasn't really able to think of "enough" of a story/lore/enemies/etc. for far-east theme.

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And how many levels would you imagine for it?

Not sure about this either. I was thinking something like: forest, then entering the castle from the main entrance, dungeon and catacombs overflowing with the undead and then a hole in the ground leading into hell (a new level type with lava caverns) where you would fight the demons. So, that would be 5. But we could also have multiple levels of hell. :) I think the main hazard would be thirst again, because it's really hot down there ;)

Or maybe having to go through old catacombs will be mandatory, but with much smaller level than the Eye of Ramana quest (regular 9-12 rooms).
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Devlog and general discussion
Post by: Jubal on December 10, 2018, 07:02:53 PM
OK, how about something like this as a schema (may be too big an idea, but):

Plot point: goblin shaman calls for your aid, gives you the Tar of Akhal and explains that demons are attacking, you must find the portal.
> Forest: Goblins vs Demons. Maybe occasionally forest rangers/an elf here or there?
> Hills: Wild beasts - could include orcs, wolves, some sort of gnoll or other barbaric-type enemy maybe.
Plot point: You reach the edge of town, it is being attacked by ninjas
> Town: Castle guards, Villagers vs Ninjas & Samurai
Plot point: you reach a samurai (similar to king in the original game) who explains that the enemies of his clan want to use the demons to conquer his people.
> Undertown/Town 2: Similar to Town, addition of good Samurai (colour variant on enemy samurai) to allied troops and occasional Bushido and Demons to enemies.
Plot point: you saved the town, they open the way down to the old caves for you
> Caves: Undead, similar to old catacombs (could indeed just be the same as a smaller variant on old catacombs)
> Muspell: Demons and lots of fire
> Lower Hells: Stronger demons & demon magic casters etc, final level. When you win, you can re-seal the gate of hell and return to the surface.

That's maybe overly large, though.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Devlog and general discussion
Post by: bigosaur on December 12, 2018, 06:54:06 PM
OK, how about something like this as a schema (may be too big an idea, but):
That's maybe overly large, though.

It does sound too big at the moment, but I will certainly try to incorporate some parts of it. Thanks.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Devlog and general discussion
Post by: bigosaur on January 24, 2019, 05:35:30 PM
Quest for the Golden Duck is out on Steam:

https://store.steampowered.com/app/996160/Quest_for_the_Golden_Duck/

I decided not to make any special threads as that game is pretty much complete and I don't plan to add anything significant in the future. Here's some history:

In 1999 I made my first game called "Njam", a two-player pacman type of game. It ran on 486 computer with DOS operating system and had VGA graphics. So, it's the 20th anniversary and that prompted me to create an updated version:

I ported all the levels to 16:9 format for modern displays and added a 4 player co-op option and the versus mode (1 vs 1, 1 vs 2 and 2 vs 2). It has full controller support and I completely revamped the graphics to use a fantasy theme with heroes and monsters chasing them around.



This game concludes my short break from Son of a Witch development from the end of 2018 and now I'm back on it full speed. New features coming soon.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Devlog and general discussion
Post by: Jubal on January 31, 2019, 11:38:33 PM
Nice, I ought to get a copy of that and test it. Looking forward to seeing what new SoaW stuff is coming :)
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Devlog and general discussion
Post by: bigosaur on February 01, 2019, 08:57:18 AM
Nice, I ought to get a copy of that and test it. Looking forward to seeing what new SoaW stuff is coming :)

Wait, didn't I send you one via e-mail? .... Whoops. Sending it now. I'm looking forward to read your thoughts about my narrative in the first tutorial world.  ;D

Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Devlog and general discussion
Post by: bigosaur on February 16, 2019, 10:47:18 AM
I started working on Son of a Witch again. For start, I'm fixing minor bugs and I'm changing the Bronze Glove to allow summoning mercenaries into boss fights as well, except for the final boss fight. I also have plans for new pets, items, weapons and potion effects. More details on those later.

I plan for 3 new game modes: first is the RPG mode where players respawn at the start of the level when they die, but enemies also respawn if you venture away from a room too far away. Heroes gain stats by killing enemies. This should make the game easier and more interesting to the casual players, so they can "grind" out a level until they get strong enough to go forward. To spice things up, I might add some new quests and achievements for this mode.

The second mode is Endless Tower. Basically, it will be an arena with waves of enemies. After every 5-10 waves there will be a boss fight and you will be able to go into adjacent rooms to by stuff from shops. The goal will be to reach wave 100 or something like that for an achievement.

I plan to introduce some new heroes, first one being an Alchemist. He or she will start with the Alchemy Ring and the Retort. I'm trying to think of some interesting starting weapon for this hero? Any ideas?
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Devlog and general discussion
Post by: Jubal on February 16, 2019, 04:30:21 PM
Nice :)

> You said three modes - RPG and Endless Tower you mentioned, but not the third?
> I wonder if the alchemist should have something that changes potions to a random other type - maybe a low damage staff that has that as a 1 mana ability, or even a hand weapon with it as a rage power since randomising it generally shouldn't be that powerful I think.
> I vote strongly for the alchemist being a she if possible - I think only having the chanter as female-presented and the knight, druid, barbarian, archer, and rogue all as male-presented feels like it could do with some rebalancing.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Devlog and general discussion
Post by: bigosaur on February 16, 2019, 08:38:22 PM
> You said three modes - RPG and Endless Tower you mentioned, but not the third?

Ah, yes. The 3rd one is the alternate storyline I mentioned before.

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I wonder if the alchemist should have something that changes potions to a random other type - maybe a low damage staff that has that as a 1 mana ability, or even a hand weapon with it as a rage power since randomising it generally shouldn't be that powerful I think.

That is interesting effect, but I'm looking for something with stronger effect. Something really game changing. Alchemists are known to turn metals into gold. Maybe something along those lines?

I think I will make her a melee character, so mana is really used to create potions, at least in the early game.

Or maybe, this hero should rarely fight on her own, but rather summon powerful guardians to fight for her. Something like 50/40/60 starting stats and the weapon has ability to summon golems or animate statues. I'm not sure if this would be too easy. Maybe require full rage for summon or something like that.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Devlog and general discussion
Post by: Jubal on February 17, 2019, 12:14:55 AM
Summoning golems with rage would be good and would make for a very new game dynamic I think as no other class gets allies early on - I think the trouble with turning stuff to gold is that you already have the portable foundry and I'm not sure the game needs more ways to get rich. I think the golems would have to not be too tough, though maybe if they had a shield so they could be good at slowing down the enemy that'd be good - similar to the goblin shield-warrior but with a slightly slower attack perhaps.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Devlog and general discussion
Post by: bigosaur on February 25, 2019, 08:53:51 PM
Summoning golems with rage would be good and would make for a very new game dynamic I think as no other class gets allies early on

I made a couple of prototypes with this using Bushido and Yeti Baby as possible summons to see what it would look like. Bushido is OP, but Yeti is quite fine, esp. when you remove the freezing effect. It works so good, I will probably just reskin the Yeti and keep the same attack animations and possibly HP/damage. I have to modify the AI to have better obstacle avoidance because ice levels have very tightly packed layout and the Golem will be used in all levels.

Here's the plan: hero will have a melee weapon and low-ish stats, most probably 60/60/60. Rage attack summons a golem, and you can only have one at a time. If he dies, you can summon a new one when the rage is full.

Now comes the fun part: the golem never attacks the enemies until you order it, and you do so by hitting them with that very same sword. So, you pick a target by hitting it and the golem will keep attacking that target until either one of them dies. The target stays as long as the enemy is alive, so you can go around and attack other enemies if you want. This makes for a really fun strategy as you can control who to attack and you can surround enemies and fight them together. Or you can just mark a tough enemy and run away to deal with weaker ones until the golem takes care of the business.

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I think the trouble with turning stuff to gold is that you already have the portable foundry and I'm not sure the game needs more ways to get rich.

Yes, I have given up on the gold idea. Too many ways to get gold, and it would probably make this class too powerful as well. This hero also starts with the alchemist kit and ring which is a huge bonus, but lack of bombs/keys can be a problem early on, so I think 100 HP will be the good choice for starting health.

We will see if the HP / damage of Golem needs to be tweaked later.

Now, I need to do all the animations for the new hero from scratch, so it may take some time before I have a demo version for testing...
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Devlog and general discussion
Post by: Jubal on March 07, 2019, 01:00:42 PM
I played a game of SoaW yesterday. It was not good news :/ my ongoing wrist/arm injury has knocked a good 20-25% of my ability with the game out, plus adapting to a new keyboard. I still managed to complete a regular game, but I doubt I'd manage any of the harder modes any more. I just hope it gets better soon, but I doubt it since I keep having to do desk work which makes it worse again. :(

One realisation I did come to - it would be nice for keyboard users to be able to have multiple keys/a secondary key attached to the same action. This would mean than if I was getting uncomfortable mid-battle with my hand positioning, I could have a pre-defined second hand position to shift round into which would stop a single muscle/position getting so overworked and reduce the risk of wrist strain whilst playing.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Devlog and general discussion
Post by: bigosaur on March 07, 2019, 03:46:30 PM
I played a game of SoaW yesterday. It was not good news

 :(

Forget about games, health is more important!

Now, did you consider buying a controller? I find it much more relaxing to play any game. It's not just wrist and fingers, the whole arm is relaxed when the controller is sitting in your lap.

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I doubt I'd manage any of the harder modes any more

Well, the new version will have two new modes: RPG mode will definitely be easier, and you can afford to die at any time because it only means restarting the current level. OTOH, the Endless Arena is actually meant to be harder than regular game...

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I just hope it gets better soon, but I doubt it since I keep having to do desk work which makes it worse again. :(

Is it an injury, strain or just tension? Something like RSI? There are things you can do, equipment you can use to lessen the stress. For example, Microsoft Ergonomic Keyboard, trackpad instead of mouse, etc.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Devlog and general discussion
Post by: Jubal on March 07, 2019, 04:13:28 PM
It's RSI, probably tendonitis rather than carpal tunnel form, but it's taking a long time to heal. I have got a new ergonomic keyboard and wrist rest, and a new upright mouse, as well as various savles and a wrist brace and things, so I'm doing everything I can for it :) I may get a controller at some point but I just spent quite a bit of money on the new keyboard & mouse setup so it can't be the highest priority at the moment.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Devlog and general discussion
Post by: bigosaur on March 07, 2019, 04:36:48 PM
It's RSI, probably tendonitis rather than carpal tunnel form, but it's taking a long time to heal. I have got a new ergonomic keyboard and wrist rest, and a new upright mouse, as well as various savles and a wrist brace and things, so I'm doing everything I can for it :)

Great. If you work for longer periods of time, I also suggest you install Workrave:

http://www.workrave.org/

It's a free program that forces you to take breaks at regular intervals (fully customizable). It helped me save my eyesight from staring into screen but it works well for RSI too. I had this problem with everything getting hazy after working for hours without breaks.

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I may get a controller at some point but I just spent quite a bit of money on the new keyboard & mouse setup so it can't be the highest priority at the moment.

Once you do, I recommend wired XBox360 Controller for Windows. It's very durable (I've got one for 5+ years) and it's big enough so your hands never get tired when using it. For comparison, I always feel some strain when using PS4 controller or Switch Joycon for longer time.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Devlog and general discussion
Post by: bigosaur on March 14, 2019, 07:51:31 PM
The Paladin update is now in beta testing branch on Steam. The full release is scheduled for March 21st.

(http://bigosaur.com/blog/images/paladin500.png)

New features:

New pets:

New potion effects:

New items:

New weapons:

General improvements and gameplay balancing:
   
Bugfixes:
   
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Devlog and general discussion
Post by: Jubal on March 15, 2019, 12:03:25 AM
I look forward to testing it some time when my arms are hurting less... the injury is improving a bit, but it's slow, especially as I can't wholly avoid a lot of the actions that were causing the original damage.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Devlog and general discussion
Post by: bigosaur on March 15, 2019, 11:52:32 AM
I look forward to testing it some time when my arms are hurting less... the injury is improving a bit, but it's slow, especially as I can't wholly avoid a lot of the actions that were causing the original damage.

Man I feel so bad about this, you're too young to have these kinds of problems.  :(

Have you talked to a doctor? There are possibly some exercises you can do to make it recover faster. My wife had these problems with a shoulder due to working with a mouse a lot and she got some workout routine that helped her a lot.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Devlog and general discussion
Post by: Jubal on March 15, 2019, 05:35:01 PM
I am using exercises :) It's just going to take time. I'm feeling quite optimistic about it, I think I'll be fully recovered in another month or so. Nerve damage just takes a particularly long time to heal.

Query - is it possible to lose in RPG mode? Or do you always get to unlock the Paladin just so long as you play for long enough to complete it.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Devlog and general discussion
Post by: bigosaur on March 15, 2019, 06:25:06 PM
I am using exercises :) It's just going to take time. I'm feeling quite optimistic about it, I think I'll be fully recovered in another month or so. Nerve damage just takes a particularly long time to heal.

Glad to see you've got it under control.

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Query - is it possible to lose in RPG mode?

Not really. If you die, you just restart the last level. The spawned minions in boss room also reset so stuff like snowballs and thorns are removed. And your skills increase with every room you clear, so even if you do low damage, you can simply grind it out and retry until you get powerful enough. For this reason I also removed thirst from the desert in RPG mode, so you cannot run out of potions.

Still I noticed that repeating the levels can be boring, so I also added an automatic skill increase every time you die.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Devlog and general discussion
Post by: Jubal on March 17, 2019, 04:19:24 PM
OK, had some playthroughs - unlocked both the new characters, played most of a game as the alchemist but got caught out on the Yeti Elder fight (I didn't have so much HP as I'd used the bare bones amulet, and I'm definitely not as quick as usual at the moment!) I like both, they have their own neat playstyles, and their unlock quests are reasonable. My main quibble is that I find it weird that the golem for the alchemist just walks through rocks - I think it should have the same pathfinding as everything else, it's not like it's a flying creature or anything.

The new challenge room in the ice area is good - I'd do a recoloured chest or something just to tip players off not to expect a normal blue-chest set of contents. I'd also leave the alchemist room appearing even after you have the alchemist - it's a fun enough challenge that I think it'd be worth having as a regular feature with some kind of reward available.

Also, you know the lower catacombs room where there's two statues blocking the entrance to a gated area with a gold chest in it? I did a sweep attack with a sword, somehow got into it from the outside, and then had no way out again. I don't honestly know how, but consider this a bug report that that's possible.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Devlog and general discussion
Post by: bigosaur on March 17, 2019, 07:37:12 PM
My main quibble is that I find it weird that the golem for the alchemist just walks through rocks - I think it should have the same pathfinding as everything else, it's not like it's a flying creature or anything.

It used to work that way in the beginning and it became mostly useless in many screens. It isn't much of a problem for enemies to get stuck behind obstacles because they can wait you out until you go around to fight them. Summoned guards are also alright because they can use ranged attacks. But the Golem was painfully useless and I just had to do something. I tried to improve pathfinding, but didn't really want to write a whole new AI engine for him. It just didn't work.

As for the reasoning, I added this to the Alchemist quest dialogue. The golem is made out of semi-liquid stone, so it can change shape and melt through obstacles at will (much like the T1000 robot in Terminator 3 movie).

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The new challenge room in the ice area is good - I'd do a recoloured chest or something just to tip players off not to expect a normal blue-chest set of contents.

I thought that might give it away and I wanted the bugs to surprise the player (at least the first time).  ;D

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I'd also leave the alchemist room appearing even after you have the alchemist - it's a fun enough challenge that I think it'd be worth having as a regular feature with some kind of reward available.

Good idea. I'll try to think of some other NPC appearing as it would be strange that you meet another Alchemist if you're playing with the Alchemist character.

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Also, you know the lower catacombs room where there's two statues blocking the entrance to a gated area with a gold chest in it? I did a sweep attack with a sword, somehow got into it from the outside, and then had no way out again. I don't honestly know how, but consider this a bug report that that's possible.

There's special logic that allows you to go through stuff when you use dash attack. This is what allows you to dash through big boss enemies like Ogre Mama, Executioner, etc. And there's also some logic that allows you to move away when you get stuck "in" another creature, but it only checks for living creatures. I'll look into it, maybe to still allow checking for petrified enemies as well.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Devlog and general discussion
Post by: Jubal on March 17, 2019, 08:15:02 PM
Mmkay - it does look odd, but fair enough. I clearly didn't read the dialogue that well!

Endless Arena I think feels too random? I've got to wave 35 at the highest, but it's too easy for things to happen that I have literally no way of preparing for - given it can choose to suddenly spawn, say, a boss plus over ten ice wizards in a game where I've had literally no ability to gain ice immunity, that's a bit of a problem to put it mildly, any character can just get shot to death with no way of stopping it which is frustrating (with that many, even if you have an elven shield it'll vanish in seconds). It sort of matters less if that an impossible enemy appears in the very early rounds (which it does, often - I've had e.g. multiple castle wizards showing up alongside skeletons or even jackal gorillas and hyper-speeding them at me before wave 10 even happened), but once you've invested the time to get more than 20 waves in then it's just annoying when the game throws something at you that you literally don't get given a way of dealing with. I feel like at the moment if I got to wave 100 for the challenge win, I'd just feel like I'd got lucky rather than feeling like I'd accomplished something, which isn't ideal. I also found that I bought most of the useful stuff from the shops pretty fast, so money stopped being interesting after about wave 20 and I was just sitting there hoping that each next cursed key wasn't going to kill me.

I dunno what the right tweak is, but some ideas:
> You could make the shops restock with new random goods once you've bought all the things in them. This would create some interesting incentives and provide another way for the player to get new random good stuff.
> I'm not sure if making all the keys cursed is really necessary. You're already trusting to fate a huge amount given that 50% of the chests will be near or totally useless. Also skeleton mages are quite common so it's not like having regular keys would leave the player without the threat of random spell effects.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Devlog and general discussion
Post by: bigosaur on March 18, 2019, 08:56:29 AM
Endless Arena I think feels too random?

That was actually what I was aiming for. A randomized gauntlet, almost impossible to beat. It's meant to be the final challenge, where you need all your skills and some luck on top. I made it for players who beat everything, but still need some excuse to play the game ;) I never designed it as something fair or always beatable. There are other game modes for that.

As for the Ice Mages problem, try playing it with the Paladin. Divine shield protects you from projectiles, so your main concern is just building rage quick enough. I beat this run earlier when the game was even harder (no random potions at all and less drops from chests):


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I'd just feel like I'd got lucky rather than feeling like I'd accomplished something, which isn't ideal.

Luck plays a big role until wave 50 or so. After that, you have unlocked enough chests to get a good assortment of usable stuff to combine and survive. And you probably have all 6 silver coins, so you can escape mid-battle to heal up and prepare before going back in (for example, shooting arrows to rebuild rage). You also got access to Crocodile or Racoon who make a huge difference. I usually get to around wave 60-70 with other non-Paladin characters, but I always die by not using some of the items/weapons/pets game offered or simply by making some dumb mistake.

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I also found that I bought most of the useful stuff from the shops pretty fast, so money stopped being interesting after about wave 20

You can still use it to get silver coins.

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I was just sitting there hoping that each next cursed key wasn't going to kill me.

I never use the keys right away. If I feel like I'm doing enough damage, I do 2-3 rounds in succession. Especially if I'm out of Dragonfire potions. The only time when I deviate from this rule is when I'm playing with Pyro and run out of mana, so I have to risk unlocking something to get a mana potion for my fireballs.

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You could make the shops restock with new random goods once you've bought all the things in them. This would create some interesting incentives and provide another way for the player to get new random good stuff.

I'm trying hard to avoid that because it creates problems with network code. As for spending extra money, I'm thinking more in the direction of having something in the game where you can spend it any time. Maybe something like a Divine Altar where you can remove all negative effects for 5000 gold?

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I'm not sure if making all the keys cursed is really necessary. You're already trusting to fate a huge amount given that 50% of the chests will be near or totally useless. Also skeleton mages are quite common so it's not like having regular keys would leave the player without the threat of random spell effects.

No. This mode should be hardddd.  :) Since I have discovered that it is beatable, I'm not making it any easier ;)

P.S. I don't recommend playing a lot of arena for you because it's very intense. Your hands won't like it. Later in the game, the waves have more enemies. It can go up to 40. It takes about 100 minutes to get to wave 100 and even my hands got tired by that point. Esp. if you play a melee character.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Devlog and general discussion
Post by: bigosaur on March 18, 2019, 08:58:45 AM
Quote
Also, you know the lower catacombs room where there's two statues blocking the entrance to a gated area with a gold chest in it? I did a sweep attack with a sword, somehow got into it from the outside, and then had no way out again. I don't honestly know how, but consider this a bug report that that's possible.

There's special logic that allows you to go through stuff when you use dash attack. This is what allows you to dash through big boss enemies like Ogre Mama, Executioner, etc. And there's also some logic that allows you to move away when you get stuck "in" another creature, but it only checks for living creatures. I'll look into it, maybe to still allow checking for petrified enemies as well.

I have fixed this now. Will upload a new version later today.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Devlog and general discussion
Post by: Jubal on March 18, 2019, 12:04:04 PM
OK, fair enough. I guess I just don't find those really long battles terribly exciting and there's less tactical diversity than in the regular game (no places to take cover, often needing to do several really long fights before I get to do any thinking about what I'm doing, and a lot of the fights the tactic is just one obvious tactic and you just have to grind it out for ages). I'll probably finish it at some point, it just feels more of an endurance fighting slog with quite a lot of luck than a particularly fun new challenge. That's probably just me though - I'm much more focused on the roguelike and tactical elements of SoaW generally, and spending several minutes running around grinding down a pack of ten jackal-gorillas that I'm just fast enough to keep away from but basically don't offer any sort of tactical variation is just a bit shrug. I can imagine players who are more interested in grinding into combat all the time might prefer this mode though.  :)
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Devlog and general discussion
Post by: bigosaur on March 18, 2019, 01:39:43 PM
feels more of an endurance fighting slog with quite a lot of luck than a particularly fun new challenge

That is true. This is the reason why I avoided adding the arena mode so long. I played it in other games, and it's really hard to make it interesting without player simply becoming OP at one point. Definitely not something that more strategy-oriented players would be interested in a lot.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Devlog and general discussion
Post by: Jubal on March 18, 2019, 02:02:16 PM
Yeah. I think I might go back to the main game, honestly - I've had another couple of tries, and I can sort of see how I could win this mode if I played it enough but I can't really bring myself to find it fun. The bigger battles get to a point where I just can't process the information on the screen or even sometimes see where my character is, which I don't really find enjoyable (I suspect I don't do split second decision-making etc so well as you do).
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Devlog and general discussion
Post by: bigosaur on March 18, 2019, 07:45:38 PM
The bigger battles get to a point where I just can't process the information on the screen or even sometimes see where my character is

I had such moments during that Paladin run. I was actually only listening to the sound effect of shield dropping and watching the rage bar at the top of the screen. Because I had no idea where my character was ;)

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which I don't really find enjoyable (I suspect I don't do split second decision-making etc so well as you do).

It definitely is the most twitchy mode of the game. If you still play at the same tempo like you did the last time I watched you, I imagine it's super hard for you. This is the only game mode where smarts are not enough to compensate.

Additionally, for some of the enemies the usual tactics don't work well, esp. those who show late in the regular game when you're already very powerful. I had to find new evasion patterns for Bats and Gorillas for example. And you have to learn which enemy combinations are deadly to neutralize those before it's too late. For example, I just got killed at wave 70 by a room full with Sky Wizards and the Elephant boss. None of those is specially hard on their own, but when the Elephant knocks you down, you cannot move for a while and then all those ice meteors fall right at you doing massive damage (when you fall down you are immune to all attacks except meteors). I actually had a lot of ice and poison arrows, so I could have prevented it by freezing the boss to death, but I never recognized the threat until if was too late.

BTW, it's also worth restarting with a seed if you find a good assortment of items in the shop. For example, Mammoth Amulet and General's Sword are a good combination to have, esp. to prevent early death by ice mages.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Devlog and general discussion
Post by: Jubal on March 18, 2019, 09:52:13 PM
Soooo... I decided to give it one last try and it turns out that getting the rogue ring early kinda breaks this mode. I could quickly work my way around all the rooms and grab the most important items at an early stage. This game having replicator scrolls also made a huge difference - I did up to about level 70 with a heavily upgraded life staff and the parrot (which mostly just covered for the fact I'd messed up and drunk a barbarian's friend potion and a magic down + orbs up potion). Then I got a bit bored so I had a potion making session and used a bunch of the elixir potion with a stack of other (otherwise useless) potions to boost my melee. Then I made a buffed up cutlass and started building my melee further on actual enemies. By wave 200, my basic quick hit with the cutlass was 950 (which was usually doubled as I had critic's shield).

(https://i.imgur.com/hXnrX5v.png)

(https://i.imgur.com/ZAzYhy1.png)

Spoiler (click to show/hide)

I decided that I'd done enough once I got to 200. There's nothing the arena can really throw at a character this powerful, and because my HP regen is based on vampire blood and I have the lizard pet, I can't even run out of supplies.

Oh, and one major thing I noticed - there really ought to be something to tell you that you have bomb immunity. It currently doesn't have a status line symbol but also as far as I can see it doesn't appear in the sidebar list when you press ESC either. When doing several runs of this it's easy to get confused, I had to find some helpful bomb goblins and let them throw explosives at me in order to check!
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Devlog and general discussion
Post by: bigosaur on March 19, 2019, 08:36:24 AM
By wave 200

 :o  :o  :o


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I decided that I'd done enough once I got to 200. There's nothing the arena can really throw at a character this powerful, and because my HP regen is based on vampire blood and I have the lizard pet, I can't even run out of supplies.

Do you think I should add some more challenging stuff after wave 100? I thought about doing it (maybe have only boss enemies spawn after that point), but it already takes about 100 minutes to get there, and since you cannot save the game and continue later it feels like getting players to play for hours doesn't make sense anyway.

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Oh, and one major thing I noticed - there really ought to be something to tell you that you have bomb immunity.

I will add it.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Devlog and general discussion
Post by: Jubal on March 19, 2019, 10:29:07 AM
I agree there's no point lengthening it.If anything it'd be nice to have a "finish and return to menu" portal appear somewhere at that point to tell you you've basically completed the content. You could make it spawn two bosses for every boss fight or something though I guess.

Would there be any way to spawn a few obstacles that only exist for some five-wave sections? I think it'd make the arena more tactically interesting, and things like the ghost orb, astral projection potion, and teleport staff could become much more useful then. Ghost orb feels pretty pointless in the arena atm.

Another thought, either replacing a current room, or opening as a special reward after wave 50, give players the favoured enemy room from the castle as a bonus. I think that wouldn't be too game breaking but would let the player feel they had more choices.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Devlog and general discussion
Post by: bigosaur on March 19, 2019, 11:04:47 AM
Would there be any way to spawn a few obstacles that only exist for some five-wave sections?

AI algorithms for many of the bosses rely on empty rooms. If I added obstacles, those would break and start behaving very strange. So, if I were to add any obstacles, I would have to program a new AI for most of the bosses. But even if I wanted it would be hard to make sense. For example, when the Golem rolls across the screen it would be really weird if he had to go around and up and down while rolling.

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I think it'd make the arena more tactically interesting, and things like the ghost orb, astral projection potion, and teleport staff could become much more useful then. Ghost orb feels pretty pointless in the arena atm.

I will remove those from rotation in Arena mode.

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Another thought, either replacing a current room, or opening as a special reward after wave 50, give players the favoured enemy room from the castle as a bonus. I think that wouldn't be too game breaking but would let the player feel they had more choices.

That thing uses the castle graphics set. I would have to redraw it for the dungeon style, but it could be nice. I was also thinking about adding all 4 altars in top,left,bottom,right room.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Devlog and general discussion
Post by: Jubal on March 19, 2019, 11:33:00 AM
Ah, good point regarding the bosses, I'd not thought of that. And yeah, if you're not going to have a use for those then removing from rotation seems sensible.

And yeah, it'd take some redrawing, I think it's a particularly good room to have for this mode though as it gives players some active choice-making to do which goes beyond a binary open the box/don't open the box. Having some altars might be good as well, but bear in mind that if the player gets any of the books that will make a huge difference to their ability to win.

EDIT: Now completed regular game with both the new characters. Alchemist I think is balanced, I had a bad set of potions & no mana canteen so it wasn't a terribly easy run. Controlling the golem can sometimes be more trouble than it's worth on the last three levels - often by that point in the game I'm strong enough that I either want to fight at range and not run in & tag enemies with a sword, or if I am swordfighting I'd like to be powerful enough that when I close with something it goes down. Also often I'd tag an enemy, dodge out the way, but the enemy would go for me and the golem would just wade through the other enemies taking damage. OTOH the golem is super powerful against all the human-size bosses, including the dragon master, so I think it balances.

The Paladin meanwhile I think is OP compared to the other characters. At present she has the same start melee skill as the knight, a different balance, but also the paladin invulnerability aura and double damage to undead which collectively are miles better than the knight's starting 25 shield points. I think her starting melee skill should be dropped to 80 to compensate, and would make her more clearly the defensive "tank" character.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Devlog and general discussion
Post by: bigosaur on March 20, 2019, 07:56:22 AM
The Paladin meanwhile I think is OP compared to the other characters. At present she has the same start melee skill as the knight, a different balance, but also the paladin invulnerability aura and double damage to undead which collectively are miles better than the knight's starting 25 shield points. I think her starting melee skill should be dropped to 80 to compensate, and would make her more clearly the defensive "tank" character.

I actually tried lowering the melee skill earlier, but it only made the fights longer and mundane. This is why I even added the damage bonus while the shield is up. Without dash rage attacks every fight would go on and on and on. On the other hand, if you get some rage upgrades or a Violet sword, she's basically unbeatable, so there's no point making the player suffer a long low-damage grind when he's going to win anyway.

Paladin was designed to be the "easy mode" type of hero, for players who have hard time playing with other classes. Yes, there are still players out there who complain that regular game is way too hard for them. Or for kids who play together with their parents. But even for experienced players, it's fun to be able to simply charge into a bunch of enemies knowing that there's nothing they can do to you.  :)
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Devlog and general discussion
Post by: Jubal on March 20, 2019, 08:12:01 AM
Mmkay. I still feel she makes the knight feel a bit too redundant. I wonder if she should have some other restriction outside her main area (literally not allowed to use bows, say, or starts with distraction like the barbarian, so you keep the power but lose some tactical options that knight players keep). But yes, point taken generally and she definitely is a slightly easier hero as intended :)
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Devlog and general discussion
Post by: bigosaur on March 20, 2019, 09:05:22 AM
I still feel she makes the knight feel a bit too redundant.

Hm, I never thought about that. Yes, I can see it as a problem.

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I wonder if she should have some other restriction outside her main area (literally not allowed to use bows, say, or starts with distraction like the barbarian, so you keep the power but lose some tactical options that knight players keep)

Distraction doesn't really feel like a Paladin thing. Not being able to use bows actually sounds interesting. Although, I fear that this might make the combat too one-dimensional. If you cannot neutralize tough enemies with ice arrows, you have to use the shield all the time. It's nice to be able to break from that pattern occasionally.

Maybe there should be something else. I'm thinking maybe disallow riding mounts or make her more vulnerable to poison?

Or perhaps it would be enough to lower the starting HP to 80 or 60?
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Devlog and general discussion
Post by: Jubal on March 20, 2019, 09:54:43 AM
Lowering starting HP makes the paladin a less effective tank, which in party games should IMO be her primary role, so I don't think that'd be a good idea. A paladin not having access to mounts would also seem weird to me, just on aesthetic grounds.

I'm not sure losing bows would make combat so 1-dimensional - she'd still have access to staffs, so she can always use the ice staff or either of the ice-related weapons. I switched to a staff a few times in my last paladin run and I had one or two changes of sword with me for different tactics, I didn't use a bow once and didn't find it limiting. I think the main thing it would count out would be using slow arrows to rob shops on early levels (which makes sense, one of my other thoughts would be just to ban paladins from starting shop robberies, they are paladins after all). So I still think that'd work, and it'd be something quite clearly unique to the character. Short of that, banning throwing weapons would be a lesser form of the same thing that would sort of make sense (in terms of the internal logic I'm basically thinking of paladins being super honourable and disliking sneaky ranged fighting).

Short of that, yeah, increasing poison vulnerability might work. I can think of lots of fun smaller things you could do which would work aesthetically but obviously for this it really needs to be one major thing that the players can get their head around easily.
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Devlog and general discussion
Post by: bigosaur on March 20, 2019, 10:43:07 AM
I'm not sure losing bows would make combat so 1-dimensional - she'd still have access to staffs, so she can always use the ice staff or either of the ice-related weapons. I switched to a staff a few times in my last paladin run and I had one or two changes of sword with me for different tactics, I didn't use a bow once and didn't find it limiting. I think the main thing it would count out would be using slow arrows to rob shops on early levels (which makes sense, one of my other thoughts would be just to ban paladins from starting shop robberies, they are paladins after all). So I still think that'd work, and it'd be something quite clearly unique to the character. Short of that, banning throwing weapons would be a lesser form of the same thing that would sort of make sense (in terms of the internal logic I'm basically thinking of paladins being super honourable and disliking sneaky ranged fighting).

Pretty good arguments. Now, only to figure out what to do with archery based rooms.

There's one it the forest where you have to shoot the hornets for runestones. I guess I could disable that one, although it's doable with ghost orb, astral projection or teleport staff. But players might get confused with NPC dialogue who asks you to shoot and gives you the bow.

The other is the Alchemist unlock room in the ice level. Paladin won't be able to complete it (except if you happen to run into Redhead warrior on the battlements), so I guess I better remove that one if paladin is playing because NPC dialogue would be confusing again and he gives you the medusa arrow.

There's also the archer unlock room where he gives you a bow to shoot. So it would be somewhat confusing for new players if they get the bow and then cannot shoot.

Since players would be able to obtain paladin early on, I think I should disable all of those when the only hero in the party is paladin.

BTW, I often use arrows to build full rage, and had to use that a couple of times in my successful Endless Arena run with the Paladin. So, blocking bows+arrows would remove that ability.

Can you think of any other instance where archery is required?
Title: Re: Son of a Witch: Devlog and general discussion
Post by: Jubal on March 20, 2019, 10:54:51 AM
I think that's everything :) I'll let you know if I think of anything else.