shawn's blog

One week of work

Posted in OriGamInc, Tone Def by Shawn on February 14, 2012

So, I wrote this up one week after I started working on Tone Def, which was called Music Defense at the time. Yes, I’m out of things to say at the moment, so I’m sharing something ‘private’, I guess.

The idea for Music Defense began as a tower defense game where you lay down instruments on the grid spots to defend your base from the enemies. As of now, the target is unknown, as are the enemies.

The project began on November 30th, with a new take on how to pull this off. This project was actually attempted a few months ago, but I had poorly executed how to do things. This time, the process when much more smoothly. The Conductor was on of the first really important pieces that was added, as the conductor keeps track of when a specific lane should play. The next things added were the Beat Lanes/Grid spots. The grid spots are the areas where the instruments would be placed down, while the beat lanes housed the Grid Spots. Other important assets added were the enemy and the spawners for enemies.

A large amount of task were made for Music Defense, much more quickly than for CloneBot. Some of them, however, are for specific instruments, rather than framework details, which makes the task list look much longer than it should be. 14 task are confirmed closed at this point. There are a few that are still opened, and need to be reviewed, as some should be closed/updated.

Again, the premise of this is to lay down an instrument that plays sound when the conductor tells it to play. Different instruments have different stat points, some have more health, than strength, others vice-versa. Using in instrument cost notes (the ‘currency’ to buy things). You also have an ‘off beat’ lane, which plays between the main beat lanes. The exact use for off beat lanes have yet to be determined. However, they will add sound to the game, making the music sound a bit fuller.

This is also one support lane, which is a vertical lane on the right side of the game screen. This lane is for support instruments only. Support instruments degrade over time, as opposed to normal instruments that lose strength as an enemy damages them. Support Instruments fire some sort of ammo which can either hurt an enemy, or heal an instrument after it comes into contact with it.

Instruments are also susceptible to bonuses which come in the form of synching or duplication. Duplication bonuses are easier to acquire. When you lay down multiple the same instrument within a lane, they receive a duplication bonus, and receive either a strength increase or a health increase. Synching bonuses are a bit harder to get. There are some instruments that play multiple sounds each time they are played, cycling through a set number, maximum being 4. This means that there is a chance that if you lay down two of the same instrument that cycle notes on the same line, their notes may or may not match. If you manage to have their notes match, you then receive a music synch bonus, again raising their health or strength.

However, there are overloads as well. Overloads happen when you lay down too many of the same instruments on a line. Each instrument has an overload limit. For example, let’s say you have a bass drum, with an overload limit of 4. You begin the game, and lay down two bass drums, receiving a duplication bonus. You then lay down another one, increasing your duplication bonus. However, you then lay down a 4th instrument in the lane. You have now overloaded the lane with Bass Drums. Each instrument then loses strength or health, falling close to or below the beginning health/strength.

Bonuses/overloading does a few things to ‘guide’ the player. If a player wanted to, they could simply lay down a large number of the same note, possibly a large number of bass drums. This not only ruins the musical aesthetics of the game, but it somewhat defeats the purpose. However, it’s possible that this would happen. The overloads stop this from happening. The duplication/synching bonuses encourage players to use the same instrument to a point where it the music sounds. Synching bonuses more so, mostly because it provides bonuses if the player matches notes. This way, you don’t get a plethora of awkward notes together, even though I am working to stop that from happening during music composition time.

This is the gist of Music Defense at this point in time. I will continue work with this, as it did not take too long to put together a basic framework for important assets.

That’s all for now. This will probably help explain why I did certain things, or allow more of an insight to my brain, if anyone is interested. The game still hasn’t been uploaded online for the world yet, but that’s due to a few issues out of my control right now.

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