Village Monsters Alpha 1.02 – Out Now!

Village Monsters Alpha 1.02 – Out Now!

Happy Waning Gibbous, Y’all

No full moon? Big deal! I can release a new demo whenever I want, and that’s exactly what I’ve done!

Ok, so this is just Alpha 1.02 which contains the core features of Alpha 1 + some extra bugfixing, polish, and even a few new features

Go download it!

As with Alpha 1, it comes with the usual warnings: there’s plenty of missing content, placeholder features, bugs, and more. However! The game has reached a level of stability and features that I feel comfortable graduating it from Pre-Alpha to Alpha

If you haven’t heard yet, there is a Kickstarter coming for Village Monsters tomorrow, September 12th. As such, this very well might be the last public pre-release demo. All Kickstarter backers at a certain tier will continue to get these free demos every couple months, but if that’s not for you, don’t fret – a final public demo will be released before the game in October 2018!

Alpha 1.02 Changes

This is patch release for the main Alpha 1 release. For full notes related to Alpha 1, head to that section below

  • MAJOR: Added a skeletal version of the quests system and added the first quest to meet all the villagers
    • Find the quests system in the Log tab of the Compendium
  • MAJOR: Added potion-like effects to several food items
  • Fixed an issue with the abandoned house registering as “indoors”
  • Fixed some weird interior tiles
  • Fixed an issue where some picket fences lack collision
  • Fixed an issue where menus would popup while submitting feedback via the mailbox
  • Fixed a rare crash related to selling an item
  • Added indoor lighting to some houses that lacked it. Sorry for leaving you in the dark, villagers!
  • Made the raft inaccessible as it was causing more issues than it was worth
  • Adjusted several collision boxes to make more sense
  • Adjusted draw radius to be a bit less aggressive
  • Improved UI to for the Home Customizer and Cooking Tools
  • Added a better cooldown to the cooking pot to prevent re-opening it immediately afterward
  • Even more new critters
  • Even more new furniture
  • Lots of mischievousness bug fixes

Alpha 1.01 Changes

This is patch release for the main Alpha 1 release. For full notes related to Alpha 1, head to that section below

  • Fixed a common crash bug related to thunderstorms

Alpha 1.00 Changes

Village & Outskirts

Village

  • Major: Much of the village has been rearranged or changed to accommodate new features
    • Four new houses have been added to the residential district
    • A new shop, the General Store run by Bottes, has been added to the village
    • The still-unnamed Treasure Chest merchant has been changed to only sell furniture
    • Stapes & Saley finally turned that weird old skull into a proper house
  • New decorations – like new rocks, trees and flowers – have been added about the village
    • Benches have also been added throughout the village
  • A new town plaza has been added near the Historical Society
  • Graves have been added to the church. It’s creeping everybody out
  • More lightning has been added around town

Lake

  • A mysterious old tower has been added to the Lake west of town

Forest

  • A new forest has been added to the west of town

Beach

  • A new area, the Beach, has been added south of town. Enjoy watching dancing palm trees and kick a beach ball around
  • The villager Pots has decided to move to the Driftwood House at the Beach
  • You can go fishing in the ocean
  • A whoopie pie truck has been spotted at the beach. I bet it sells whoopie pies!

Overlook

  • A new area, the Overlook, has been added east of town

The Ruins of Soon

  • An in-game record of future features has been added to the game. It’s called the Ruins of Soon

Other

  • The player no longer auto-enters closed doors (like when trying to enter a house from the outside)
    • Instead, press A to open it up – assuming it’s unlocked
  • All interiors have had shadows added to give them a better feel

Villagers

  • Major: Most villagers now have additional things to say after the 1st day passes
    • More dialog will be added in an upcoming patch
  • New collisions have been added to each villager

Villagers

  • The following new villagers have moved in:
    • Rainboy, the Elemental
    • Bavarian, the Blob Chef
    • Serin, the Tree inside Overflow
    • Lucy, the Artistic Golem
  • New dialog and portraits have been added for each new villager

Merchants

  • You can now sell items at Bottes’ store (the General Store)
  • Many new items and furniture are now available to buy

Creatures

Critters

  • MAJOR:  A new behavior for ground critters has been added
  • MAJOR: Critters may flee for good if you scare them too much
  • Several new critters have been created
    • Dusty
    • Capricious Cumulus
    • *hearts
    • Many more
    • Stop reading this! Go find them!

Flavor Creatures

  • A new bird, the Sparrow, has been added to the skies
  • A new bird, the Fat Chicken, has been added to the ground
  • A strange ‘bird’ has also been added to the skies

Hobbies

  • There is now a confirmation dialogue before donating items to the Historical Society

Critter Collection

  • MAJOR: Captured critters can now be tamed into pets via the Pet Bowl furniture item
  • Pets can be fed to reduce their wildness and make them more friendly
  • SFX plays when the net is swung

Botany

  • MAJOR: A new hobby, Botany, has been added to the game
  • Plant fruit at various dirt mounds to grow fruit trees
  • Water planted trees each day to ensure they grow
  • Once they reach full maturity, fruit trees can produce additional fruit

Cooking

  • MAJOR: A new hobby, Cooking, has been added to the game
  • It’s quite basic, but bring 3 food items to the cooking put inside your home to whip something up

Player House

Customization

  • MAJOR: Furniture placement has been completely overhauled
    • Press and hold C (Keyboard) or Y (Gamepad) to turn on Customization Mode
    • While in Customization Mode, walk up to a furniture and press Z (Keyboard) or A (Gamepad) to move it around
    • You may move furniture with the arrow keys, mouse, or right analog stick
    • C (Keyboard) or Y (Gamepad) again to turn off Customization Mode
  • Placing a furniture (that you bought at the store) now places you in Customizing Mode automatically
  • Helper text has been added to make it easier to navigate customizer mode

Furniture

  • Many, many new furniture items have been added to both the store and villager homes

Other

  • A new player-specific mailbox has been added in front of the player’s shack
    • On occasion, the player may receive mail. The mailbox indicates new mail
  • A morning news program has been added to the television
    • Tune in to hear random headlines from the village and elsewhere

Systems

Weather

  • A new weather type, Hail, has been added
    • A new particle effect was added to represent hail on the ground

Mail

  • MAJOR: A new system, Mail, has been added to the game
  • New UI (letterhead) has been added to support letters
  • On occasion, the player will receive mail from villagers
  • The player will also receiver mail from the mayor before a special event
  • Players may go to the red mailbox near town hall to submit game feedback via the mail system
    • Mail sent via this system will be actually emailed to me, so make use of it!

Items

  • The bounding box that detects item interaction has been made easier to hit
  • Some items have been renamed

Food

  • Many new fruits have been added to eat

Potions

  • MAJOR: A new type of item, Potions, have been added to the game
  • Potions can have major or silly effects to the player and game systems when consumed
  • Potion of Transparency: Makes you transparent and prevents critters from fleeing from you
  • Potion of Tepid Torpality: Time progresses slower for awhile
  • Potion of Posthaste Passage: Time progresses faster for awhile
  • Potion of Fast Feet: You move quicker for awhile
  • Potion of Fewer Features: You temporarily become a silhouette

Treasures

  • New ore and treasures have been created and seeded around town. Happy hunting!

User Interface

  • Major: A new screen is now displayed at the end of each day. It displays some flavor text and a tip for getting the most out of the game
  • Major: A new title screen is now displayed at game start
  • All fonts in the game have been replaced by Peepo, a pixel-font
    • Using a pixel font means that this is now officially an indie game

Dialogue

  • MAJOR: Dialogues may now have choices which triggers branching dialogue and other actions

Inventory

  • MAJOR: Item Cards have been added for each item to display vital information
    • Item cards contain sprites, type, descriptions, and flavor text
    • Some item contain stories, and you can flip the card to view it
  • A new row has been added to the inventory for mail management

Compendium

  • A new page, the Village Map, has been added to the Compendium
    • The player’s current location should be properly reflected on the map…but no promises
  • A new page, the World Map, has been added to the Compendium
  • A new page, the Log, has been added to the Compendium
  • A new page, the Calendar, has been added to the Compendium
    • The Calendar tracks the current day, elapsed days, and marks upcoming events
    • The Calendar is otherwise very basic

System Menu

  • A new system menu has been added when Escape is pressed
    • The game will no longer close immediately after hitting Escape
    • The system menu can be controlled via the keyboard even when in Gamepad mode
  • You can now toggle the music on / off from the System Menu

Other

  • Months have been renamed and updated where appropriate

Improvements

Village & Outskirts

  • New interior tilesets have been created to create better variation
  • Grass has been added to the base of trees to make them more…uh…natural?
  • Trees now have a cooldown before you can shake them again
  • Shadows have been added to every building, decoration, and entity in the village
  • Collision boxes for each building have been adjusted

Village

  • The town tavern, Overflow, has been completely redone and improved
    • This includes an actual interior complete with bar & kegs
  • Skunkwork’s treasure chest merchant shop has been recolored and redesigned to be a bit less garish

Historical Society

  • You can now donate treasure-based items again at each pedestal

Crossroads

  • The crossroads has been improved and rearranged to accommodate new areas
  • Signs have been added to the Crossroads to make it easier to navigate

Player & Dog

  • A new SFX has been added for indoor footsteps
  • A new walk speed, called “Walk” has been added for keyboard users
    • Toggle it with Control

Dog

  • You may now interact with the dog like all the other villagers
  • The dog’s portrait has been fixed
  • The dog sprite has been improved. It should no longer look like she’s wearing lipstick

Creatures

  • Generally, ground-based creatures should no longer spawn in the middle of water
    • They still might want to go for an occasional dip, though

Critters

  • Full animations have been added to the Coldsteel Hedgehog
  • Full animations have been added to the Pocket Horse
  • Full animations have been added to the Beholden
  • Critters now properly collide when indoors
    • (no promises for outdoors)
  • The Sap Fly now have a proper behavior
  • The Sun Fly has been renamed the Watt Fly
  • The gnome now has a shadow and animation

Flavor Creatures

  • All flying flavor creatures have been completely redone to be less ugly

Hobbies

  • Hobby tools now have proper “use” animations
  • Hotkeys have been added to each tool to quickly bring up via the keyboard
    • 1 = Bug Net, 2 = Shovel, etc.

Fishing

  • MAJOR: The fish system, including line strength and fish stamina, has been completely reworked and improved
    • Fishing has also been rebalanced to be a bit easier
  • Labels and values have been added to the line strength and fish stamina bars
  • While a fish is hooked, you may be prompted to move the rod to the left or right
    • Success in following the prompt gives you a bonus to line strength, while failure gives you a penalty
  • Fish now fade in over time, and properly fade out at random intervals
  • The fish has been improved, though you probably wouldn’t have noticed if I hadn’t said anything

Whistle

  • The player no longer moves while the Whistle is in use

Watering Can

  • A new tool, the Watering Can, has been added

Player House

Furniture

  • The initial player home has been changed to include some new furniture items
  • Furniture now has a basic hierarchy: Toppers (like lamps, flowers) may now be placed on Surfaces (tables, shelves) or the floor.
  • The rug has been made a proper object and no longer is scaled weird
  • It’s no longer possible to move furniture by mouse – it was only annoying people

Systems

  • MAJOR: All systems have been migrated to the “Director” model, allowing for far more robust and interesting interactions with the player, the world, and each other

Weather

  • Temperature now has more granularity, and changes with weather instead of with time
  • Weather particle effects have been optimized and more evenly distributed around the player
  • Weather changes only occur when there’s a new weather type (as opposed to every time the time changes)
    • This prevents issues where it briefly stops raining only to start raining again

Time

  • Time change effects now occur via events
  • The player automatically warps back to their house when the day is over

Music & Sound Effects

  • Music is now properly refreshed as time and days progress
  • All weather sound effects now play inside at a muted volume
    • Thunder now plays even while indoors
  • A new sound effect plays for the Hail weather type
  • The ocean has special ambient ocean sounds
  • The village will now experience the occasional random birdsong
  • Birds that fly overhead will also now occasional chirp if the player is close enough

Items

  • All items have improved descriptions, flavor text, icons, and story
  • The lantern has been adjusted to display correctly

Food

  • Fruits have been turned into cubular shapes. I don’t know why.

Controls

  • Keyboard controls have been massively improved
    • Movement is handed via the arrow keys

User Interface

  • Player movement and time passage are now paused when menus are open

Dialogue

  • The portrait name is now properly centered

Inventory

  • MAJOR: The inventory has been completely revamped in style and function
  • You may now hold many more items than before
  • Upon using an item, the item ‘cursor’ will automatically move to the next available item
    • The graphical look of the inventory has been vastly improved
  • The inventory can be toggled off via the Cancel action
  • The inventory is automatically closed when an item is used
  • Context-sensitive buttons are now displayed in each item card
  • A new inventory mode, Pick Mode, has been added, and is used when prompt to select an item
  • A new inventory mode, Sell Mode, has been added, and is used when items are being sold
  • By default, the Bits (currency) counter is hidden until the inventory is toggled
    • The Bits counter is also temporarily displayed whenever you add or remove Bits
  • It is no longer possible to “Use” items without first opening the inventory (it was too annoying)
  • Using an item is now handled via the Z key or A button
  • The image speed of sprites should be a lot less weird

Notifications

  • Item descriptions have been removed from notifications, as it was very dumb of me to leave them there
  • Notifications have been resized and improved
  • Notifications have an animation when created
  • Notifications time out based on rarity of event (rare notices take longer to disappear)
  • New notifications always stay in the same place as old notifications rotate out
  • A notification is created upon meeting a villager for the first time

New Area Notice

  • The new area graphic has been replaced by a wooden motif
  • The new area notice now animate

Compendium

  • Each section has a new label identifying it

Clock / Calendar

  • New icons have been added for each weather type
  • The calendar icon has been improved
  • Drawing of the clock and calendar have been generally optimized

Technical

Camera

  • The camera surface properly resizes and refresh with each new room
  • A new dynamic camera has been added to make things feel smoother and more relaxed

Collision

  • A new, faster collision system has been implemented
    • Many collisions for objects have been adjusted

Debug

  • The version number is now always displayed in the top left corner

Other

  • A custom sprite scaling function has been added to scale sprites in a less goofy way
  • A number of unused sprites have been removed fromt he game

Bug Fixes

  • MAJOR: A common crash related to critter spawning has been fixed
  • MAJOR: Many crashes related to “Using” some items has now been fixed
  • MAJOR: A crash related to speaking with some villagers twice has now been fixed
  • A rare crash related to the furniture balloon has been fixed
  • A rare crash related to fishing has been fixed
  • It is no longer possible to place furniture outside (whoops)
  • It is no longer possible to place furniture inside other houses (haha, my bad again)
  • Movement during room transitions have been fixed
  • Trees should no longer trap you in an eternal leafy embrace
  • Trying to use an item without a use no longer closes the inventory
  • The bug net will no longer catch bugs if it’s not being swung (don’t ask)
  • Rooms properly fade in on load
  • The Capsule machine should be a lot less crashy
  • Issues related to weather changing have been resolved
  • Weather particles better track the player on map edges
  • Lightning no longer occurs indoors
  • A slight delay has been added to opening or closing the inventory to prevent weird behavior
  • Fish should no longer ‘escape’ the fishing UI element
  • Items in the inventory will now properly clear out if you use multiple of the same item
  • Crashes related to picking up some gatherable items has been fixed
  • The dog ball (and fetching) should work once again
  • Sunflower layering has been fixed
  • General layering issues have also mostly been fixed
  • The Ornamental Beetle should no longer look like a total weirdo when spawned on trees
  • Town lights should now turn on properly even when you aren’t in town

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