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Game Development, Making a Train Boss and more!

Welcome to the weekly Boss 101 update!

Today we are talking about one bad ass mo-fo, the Train Boss. This dude is found on one of the later planets and he is not one, not two but multiple parts and weapons you battle as you make way from the caboose to the front of the train.

Though he shares some of the base abilities of the earlier bosses (flames, lasers and ultra shots) he also has a new ones you haven’t seen. He has a train car which fires balls of plasma which can destroy YOUR shots. What the heck!?! Don’t fret, you have counters for all his tricks but you do have to be careful. This dude requires patience and a steady hand. Blasting away might not get you too far. Let’s look at some of the cars and the process behind the boss.

First off – he’s a train. HAAAAA!!! YOU KNOW THAT! Well, we had to create a track system and when I say “we” I mean Joshua, our uber programmer. I think the conversation went something like this

Me: Hey, what about a train boss thing?
Joshua: Yeah, we can do that.
Me: Man, we can have it race across the bottom of the screen all awesome.
Joshua: yah, totally. It will look cool.
Me: Dang, wouldn’t it be cool if the track actually had hills and stuff the train could move up and down on?
Joshua: I thought that is what we were just talking about. I was going to make that happen.
Me: WHAT!?! You mean you can code all that train shiz to work? Like a real train on sloping hills.
Joshua: Oh yah, S’easy.

Welp, guess what – he sure made it look easy. Once those tracks were in we started creating the cars and the play space you will fight in. Check out JUST A FEW of the awesome possum things we have.

Mine Layer Car – this guy will teleport in mines to block your path. Not something you want to hang around for a long time. Be sure to take this clown down quick.

Mortar Car – Lobs one of the biggest shells in the game at you. Sure you can shot it but if you’re caught in the explosions don’t blame us. We warned you.

Flak Cannon Car – designed to keep you in place and pound you out of the sky. He has to take a break between blasts so make the most of the time you get.

Laser Beam Eyes – fires trick shots

Gas Car – goes boom

Some early work on the process of the train boss and how we do art in general!

Gophers Remember these guys? Check it:

We continue with a look at the little touches we’re putting in Boss 101. We are polishing. That means fixing bugs and cleaning up the game to give you a top notch experience.

Well they are back and we have a pass of the gopher collection room working. It goes like this, you collect gophers after you finish certain rounds. You bring these guys back to the Command Center where they set out on their secret project. What exactly is that – well you will have to find out YOURSELF when you collect all of them.

Check out this image with a few gophers collected and their mighty machines being upgraded. The way this works is you collect five gophers per machine type and each new gopher upgrades the machine. Kinda cool!?! Look at those guys zooming around. They use the machines too! YES!!!!!

Cleaning up and polishing Kite Hill

This is a great example of things we are doing to make Boss 101 nice for you. Kite kill is awesome. It works, it looks good, there is technically nothing wrong with it. Well, we decided to take a feature we really liked and use it with kite hill. You see, when you start the game you are presented with a random opening scene (day, night, etc). That scene is reflected on a smaller scale in the Command Center but it was not reflected on Kite Hill, until now. Let’s look at some examples.

Opening Scene Sunrise

Kite Hill Sunrise

Opening Scene Daytime

Kite Hill Daytime

Opening Scene Night

Kite Hill Night

Boss 101, Tim Donley and talk about Planescape Torment

Planescape was a long, LONG time ago but next to Boss 101 it had to be one of the most rewarding teams I (Tim Donley) have ever had the privilege of working with. Great people and great energy from the team. I strongly feel if you have a great team you will make a great product and the reverse is also true. Boss 101 is a great team and we do enjoy each other’s company. The final product will be yours to judge but the ingredients are there.

Interview with Tim Donley @Boss 101, Planescape Torment and more!

The interview above is about an hour long and it covers mostly Planescape Torment but there is a lot of talk about game philosophy and we things work the way they do in game development. If you’re interested, please check it out.

Thank you again for your support. It means everything. Take care and please live your dreams!

-Tim

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