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Artemis: The process of creating fun abilities

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    Artemis: The process of creating fun abilities

    Hey all,

    In this development update we would like to give you a glimpse into the iterative process of creating an ability.

    Let’s take a look at some of the Ranger’s abilities and create modifiers for them such that those abilities synergize well together.

    On one hand we have Aimed Shot. In its current state Aimed Shot fires a projectile that pierces all targets along its way. Aimed Shot also has a charging ability mechanic: after activation you can hold a button (or finger on the screen) for up to 2 seconds, improving its damage and potentially activating other perks. Let’s see this ability in action, in its vanilla state:

    As we can see, with the added skill element of having the targets neatly aligned, Aimed Shot is already a lot of fun to play.

    But why stop there?
    Click image for larger version

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    What if we create another ability that briefly aligns the targets in front of us then we use Aimed Shot on those aligned targets. Let’s call this ability Inflow:

    Not bad, but the new ability has some issues:
    1. It occupies an active ability slot. When you are limited to 4 active ability slots, you realize that a slot is very valuable for the player. An ability needs to do a lot more work to be considered in the player’s arsenal.
    2. It kind of feels artificial, i’s sole purpose being to align your targets
    What if Aimed Shot itself, in combination with a perk from an item, would align the targets before shooting its projectile. Let’s say Ring of Magical Alignment has this perk: “When Aimed Shot is fully charged, targets in front of you are... ugh... magically aligned in a line”. Wording intended here and you will see why.

    We gained an ability slot at the expense of a perk that needs to be present on an item. A good trade. However, while the effect does what we want, it has its own issues:
    1. Might be too easy to execute (personal opinion, fun might be reduced)
    2. The targets being aligned by some magical force before the projectile is fired feels kind of odd.
    It somehow felt better with the Inflow ability: you had to activate two abilities in the proper order to get a powerful effect. It was a proper combo.

    That gives us an idea, we already have this Ranger ability: Disengage.
    In its current state, Disengage causes the hero to dash away from the current target. A very useful and flexible mobility ability: it can be used to avoid dangerous situations, gain distance from a target, and travel faster.
    What if we create a perk for Disengage that synergizes well with Aimed Shot: “When using Disengage, targets in the area are pulled in a line along the hero trail”?

    Click image for larger version

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    ​Let’s see it in action now

    Some more gameplay, with a double tap perk for Aimed Shot

    This was just one iteration over an ability, and is far from done. During development we repeat this process many, many times, until we are happy with the result.

    Enjoy the videos and let us know what you think.
    Last edited by Adrian (Developer); 04-10-2023, 08:44 PM. Reason: Added missing images


    I like the idea of disengaging making the alignment. Maybe make the line less straight and building more slowly? On the second video, the first disengagement seems very short... The length is way better on third video.
    Last edited by LodWig; 04-10-2023, 08:09 PM.
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    • Adrian (Developer)
      Adrian (Developer) commented
      Editing a comment
      Nothing eludes you
      Yeah, that first disengage bugged out and stopped too early, was thinking to re-shoot the video because of it.

    Adrian, thank you for sharing the development process. Interesting & now I can imagine how Eternium's abilities were made. So, you like the third option best, so do I.
    Last edited by Arin; 04-10-2023, 08:16 PM.


    • Adrian (Developer)
      Adrian (Developer) commented
      Editing a comment
      Right? I personally feel there's a bit more skill involved and some risk/reward with this option.

    Looks cool! It has to be tweaked somewhat, as now it seems like the world stops for two seconds while you're charging the shot : ) Wonder how it will work against CC immune enemies, guess you'll sometimes have to cancel the charge to avoid getting killed...

    But yeah appreciate theupdate - it hints at how many iterations it takes to make a cool combo
    Mage: Anba
    Bounty Hunter: Gemma


    • Adrian (Developer)
      Adrian (Developer) commented
      Editing a comment
      Indeed, the monsters are stunned (conveniently) for 2 seconds. Players will have to employ other strategies to maximize Aimed Shot against crowd control immune monsters (e.g.: bosses)

    Awesome. Can't be patient to wait pre launch or may some closed beta tester.

    respons to bojck which wonder how it will work against CC immune enemies, I think maybe there are some add ability skills for 'Ignore the defense armor'.
    so, even the enemies have CC immune but the Aimes shot can break the defense.


      I like the disengage concept, but the aim time is too long. In a fast paced game, having to stand 2 seconds is just too long, If you reduce the aim time to 1 sec, it would feel more natural and doesnt break the flow.

      Anyway, it looks nice and its awesome to see how the progress is made.


      • Adrian (Developer)
        Adrian (Developer) commented
        Editing a comment
        Good observation. Yeah, it seems a bit too long, will tweak it until it fits the more fast paced combat.

      oh wow
      I've never seen the creative progress laid out like this.
      Thanks for sharing Adrian♡

      I hope to see more posts like this in the future! It's really fun to watch

      PS: Maybe when the hero disengages, it creates a vacuum, pulling the mobs into it (and thus some will end up in a line too)


        I love the way the new game looks. Very encouraging to see its progress. I am in agreement with Heikki Gross's comment above (#6). Aimed shot is in many RPG games like WoW, and it is a timed shot, not an instant. In a fast-paced game, not necessarily based on agro or mob dynamics so a shorter time would make sense for the flow of the game. However, a longer time is more realistic, for it takes a little longer to line up such an "aimed" shot. There is a fine line between realism and gameplay.