A highly musical programmation

Dear devblog reader,

It’s been too long since we last read each other. I will not talk about graphics today, but about another artistic side of the project: the music.

Indeed, we’ve been working hard with a composer (Matthieu) since the end of last year, and more recently with a sound designer (Pierre), in order to create the music and sound identity of Energy Heroes.

It’s now with pleasure, and after many discussions and visits of the SCD Manta, that we let you have a little sneak peek at the main theme of the game.

 

 

You will be able to listen to the full track later, with many surprises! Dear reader, do not hesitate to react on social networks and on the devblog to tell us what you think of the musical style of the game.

I must go now, I have spacepony.

See you soon devblog readers!

Xarden, outer space sheet music.


Online termination

Dear bloggers,

For a few weeks now, we’ve been sharing concepts from the renovated “Stage 375” that you may visit during the Energy Heroes’ Early Access. Today, we’ll talk about the game’s website.

Indeed, after more than 9 months of good and faithful service, we have decided to put an end to our relationship with the alpha’s website. It’s sad, but rest assured that it happened without any virtual violence.

Our web knight is now working on a new version that will be ready at the end of March. You’ll have to wait a few days to appreciate the results.

Meanwhile, you can register for free to the Energy Heroes early access by following this link, be ready for change!

Cactusrose – the web communication


The universe: a colourful sequel!

Greetings!

We’re back this week on the art planet to talk about the universe. We will talk about the two main factions present in the game: the E’Nyhm and the Qen’Ory.

In order to make the universe a main component of Energy Heroes, we’ve decided to make these two civilizations differ with two different colour codes: blue and red.
Furthermore, in-game elements and architectures are specific to each faction. That’s how the game’s art and universe are combined to offer the most riveting experience to the players. It also makes the difference between the two teams more obvious in game, which is a good idea, isn’t it?

Here are two new concepts illustrating the differences between the two factions.

The first concept depicts the E’Nyhm, red being their predominant colour and their architecture being massive and technological.

Devblog_Concept_TransRoomRedThe second depicts the Qen’Ory, easily recognizable by the predominant blue colour, by their ethereal and floating buildings.

Devblog_Concept_TransRoomBlue
We will be back very soon to talk again about the universe, but we’ll focus on sound this time. See you next week for new adventures.

Cactusrose – Coloured communication


Stairways to Energy Heroes

Hi!

Since the alpha, many modifications and improvements have been made. One of them may seem especially trivial, however it made our 3D modelers and UV unwrappers go crazy, and, even worse, it made SCD’s older mercenaries angry: access ramps have all been replaced by stairs.

At first, you could think it’s easy… then you hear modelers grumble about the “Art director’s stairs” and you witness the animators, covered in bruises through jumping right into the studio’s stairs in order to observe what happens when the human body fights its worst enemy: gravity (good thing animators are quite tough).

Devblog_Concept
Live testimony: “At first, I thought that it would be simple, that I just would have to duplicate steps. It’s only 153 steps later that I realised how wrong I was.” – Anonymous modeler

Escaliers
Eventually, when you’ll have the opportunity to gambol through the Stage375 firing at anything that moves, have a thought for the brave who made the 387 steps constituting the map’s stairs.

Breenoux – Special reporter.


Join the SCD

Greetings!

This week we’ll be talking about a subject that matters to us: Energy Heroes’ universe.

As player ourselves (yes, our developers do not only spend their time coding, they also play ;)) we wanted Energy Heroes to have a “soul”. That’s why our game designers worked hard to create a rich and consistent universe of which you’ll find a small overview in this article.

Have you spotted the following logo in previously released concepts?

SCDLogoBlanc

It’s the SCD’s one (Society of Control and Defense). By the way, it’s a reference to another famous acronym, do you know which one? Don’t hesitate to post your answer as a comment.

Back to the subject, this company, created by a human, is one of the most famous in the known universe. Its objective:  take action during important conflicts and use its mercenaries to deal with it on a small scale, preventing long and deadly wars.
In Energy Heroes, you assume the role of one of these soldiers recruited by the company. Join the SCD and fight for peace!

And that’s it for this short glimpse of the universe, see you next week!

Cactusrose – The scenarised communication


A prickly issue: episode 2

Prepare for trouble, make it double! The studio’s pet cactus is back. [link]

Slier than ever, it escaped from the communication office and hid somewhere inside the game engine. It thought that we wouldn’t find it… but we eventually got our hands on it in a quite peculiar place: the brand new Stage375’s aquarium.

Cactus
In short, this spiky adventure was an opportunity to show you a new area of the beta map.

EH_MRAqualifeSee you next week for new adventures!

Cactusrose – The aquatic communication


Confusing terms

Hello everyone!

A promise is a promise! However, before showing you the very first beta concepts (just released from our artistic factory), I would like to focus a little on two terms used in the video game industry that sometimes lead to confusion: alpha and beta.

The difference? The alpha’s purpose is to test the gameplay (for instance: is the game fun?) and not to give a preview of the visual aspect. On the other hand, the beta must include stable gameplay and the visual aspect must rock as our art director would say.
Let’s get back to our artistic topic, we have decided to show you two beta concepts for the 3v3 map along with their alpha counterparts for the sake of comparison.

stage375_alphavsbeta_02_720 stage375_alphavsbeta_03_720
We hope you will appreciate these new concepts, see you next week! :)

Cactusrose – The confused communication.


Back to the past (That’s really the title)!

Hello,

News about Energy Heroes’ development have run scarce lately and we apologize for that. However, no news doesn’t mean that nothing happened, far from it! Here is a little summary of our last adventures.

After our trip in Korea during the Animasia Festival in October, we jumped in the plane and visited France capital in order to attend the Paris Game Week.

20151027_131021 copieIn the course of this event, we had the opportunity to defend our project during the Development Awards ceremony in which we were nominated for Best Social Game. It was also a great opportunity to present the game to the public. Unfortunately, we didn’t get any trophy, and maybe that’s a good thing since it would have made the metal detector ring on the way back at the airport.

20151028_090810 copieThe jet lag was difficult to overcome for our project manager.

20151028_100358 copie

In the meantime, we moved the studio in a new galaxy (well, on the second floor), and we have been looking for talent all around France in order to complete our team. In short, we wanted to tell you that the Energy Heroes production is still ongoing, and we will give you more news in 15 days with a new devblog article comprising exclusive visual from the incoming Energy Heroes Beta.

Eventually, the entire EH Team wish all of you a happy new year 2016 that’s going to be, we hope, one of video games.

Cactusrose – The overbooked communication.


A journey to Korea for DSC Studio22

Greetings to you, gamers and Asiatic Culture enthusiasts!

Since the online alpha closure, developers have been tracking bugs and artists have been drawing on their tablets in order to address your feedback and suggestions.
While some of us are getting the next Energy Heroes alpha ready, I (the communication lady) am taking care of our next video-game expedition: the Animasia Festival.

Friends from Bordeaux and from further realms, we’ll be at the Animasia Festival from October 10th to October 11th (Bordeaux), don’t hesitate to come.

On the program? A human sized adventure in the video-game industry (what a video game studio like DSC Studio22 looks like), development anecdotes, and we will of course be pleased to answer your questions.

And there’s more! The Animasia Festival will also allow you to discover Asiatic Culture thanks to many activities, prestigious guests (guest list link). This event is organized by the mighty Mandora association.

We won’t go there empty handed! What about an exclusive Animasia skin? If you want one, come at the DSC Studio22 stand from October 10th to October 11th. :)
We still have a lot on our plate though! See you in a few days for more information, stay tuned!

Cactusrose – The factual communication.


The Energy Heroes alpha prolonged!

Dear alpha testers,

We are back this week for a new announcement: the Energy Heroes alpha will be extended! The end of the alpha, initially scheduled for the 17th of August 2015, will in fact happen a few weeks later!
This alpha phase is very important for our developers as it’s the best time to test, to change and to adjust the gameplay in order to make the game as enjoyable as possible.
That’s why we are counting on you! Register if it’s not already done, talk about the game to your friends and invite them to play with you during the server working hours (from 7PM to 2AM (GMT+2)). The more of you that play the game, the faster the game reaches the next stage: the beta.

After 15 days of alpha testing, we gathered and processed your first impression, and updated the game a few times. The third update, including the in-game chat, should be released very soon.

J0_Boxe copie

To conclude, get your agendas: a new match against the developers is scheduled for Thursday the 20th of August 2015 at 8PM (GMT+2), the occasion for you to test your skills and challenge the developers! Beware though, they are training hard. Will you be able to beat them? See you on Thursday for the answer! :)

Cactusrose – the competitive communication.


The bug war has been harsh for our developers.

Greetings faithful Energy Heroes mercenaries!

First, we would like to thank you again for your patience, we understand that the servers shutting down may have been unpleasant, however it was necessary. After many hours of intern testing and entire pages of bugs, we are pleased to announce that the Energy Heroes alpha is once more available and working.

IMPORTANT: You must install the new version of Energy Heroes (0.2.1.0 version). You’ll discover the game launcher which will make future updates easier.

Further to the servers downtime, and despite our effort to restart the alpha as fast as possible, we encountered many issues with the matchmaking server which prevented the game to work as intended. Our developers died because of that, two times. But good news everyone, not only did we solve this problem, but we also took this opportunity to improve some features (better feedback, balancing etc.). You may find more precise information by reading the soon available patchnote on the forum.

To conclude this fourth article of my blogger career, we would like to share another good news with you: Energy Heroes has been greenlighted by the Steam community!

BanniereGreenlight_v2
A big THANK YOU TO ALL OF YOU! We are very pleased by the way you welcomed Energy Heroes and we will do our best for what happens next! If you want to help us make the game, play during the alpha, have fun and give us your opinion. :)

Cactusrose, the bugged communication


The closed alpha is now available!

Greetings future tester,

After more than a year and a half of intense production by our team of mighty geeky knights in Development and Art, we are pleased to announce that the Energy Heroes closed alpha is now available!

Thank you very much for your support during the production, but now is the time to play! Players who receive an alpha key may have access to the following features:

We ask the alpha testers to keep in mind that the game is in alpha 1.0 stage and will evolve a lot over the next months. Alpha testers should report any bug or problem they may encounter using our support page.

We will pay close attention to your reports, your impressions and your comments in order to make the game evolve the way you would like it to be. Don’t hesitate to share your opinion and communicate with us via the forum or on our social pages #EHGame_alpha. Thank you in advance!

New alpha keys will be distributed over the next weeks so new players may join the Energy Heroes community. Keep an eye on social networks and on the official website, keys may be hidden there ;). Meantime, have fun and above all “Change the way you fight!”.

J0_Alpha

Cactusrose, the experimental communication.


Some energium for evolution

Hi there! We meet again to talk this time about one of the Energy Heroes gameplay features which will, without any doubt, spice up the game a little bit.

When a game starts, both bases begin with level one entities which do not make coffee and simply do what is written on their instructions: towers shoot enemies, the Energy Gate powers up minions who then go for a little walk in the fields. The ship itself is at its maximal level from the start: pew pew, shopping.

Energium is what makes the world go around for the Qen’Ory and the E’Nyhm, and mercenaries will be sent on Syrh in order to take part in the conflict resulting from it. Jorvak engineers installed a module inside Stage 375 that simulates the conditions and situations mercenaries will face on Syrh. This module which is on the first floor is in fact a room containing a resource stockroom (and a nice space view too).

EntityEvolution_01

This resource stockroom produces energium during a game. Players may gather it and bring it back to their bases in order to stock it and unlock upgrades for their buildings. Beware, if the player is hit while carrying energium, he will drop a bit of it.

During a game, your team may be able to buy some or all of the available upgrades, and keep in mind: the last one is really powerful.

Here is the upgrade tree available for the alpha:

EntityEvolution_01

Of course, we worked hard to make all of these upgrades visually and easily identifiable in-game.

EntityEvolution_02

This already unlocked pack at the start of a game is comprised of 2 towers, one Energy Gate and a colonization module which can create minions.

EntityEvolution_03-2The tower’s core is upgraded, making the tower’s shots more powerful.

EntityEvolution_03-1Minions’ core are upgraded, their attack is more powerful when powered up at the Energy Gate.

EntityEvolution_04-2

The tower core is powerful enough to generate a shield around itself. This shield must be destroyed, beware though, given enough time it will replenish even if it has been destroyed.

EntityEvolution_04-1Minions’ cores are upgraded, making them more resistant.

EntityEvolution_05-1The tower core is so powerful that its attack now have an area of effect!

That’s all about entities’ upgrades available during the Energy Heroes alpha which will start in two days! If you have an alpha key, you may take part in it.

And by the way, someone dropped this on my desk, you might find a use for it! 😉 ALPHW1-G1CF-3HQ5-ESSV

See you soon!

Xarden, art stockroom


Technologic uplifting

Hi! The closed alpha is approaching quickly, and now it’s the perfect opportunity to talk to you about the new Energy Heroes’ entities. After the local alpha they indeed took the road to the factory.

NewEntity_Concepting

After the local alpha test, Lunder and I came to the conclusion that the entities were not relevant enough in regards to the Energy Heroes’ gameplay. With the help of the Art team, we revamped these entities around a new notion: Cores. It was also a great occasion to prepare the integration of a new feature: building upgrades.

Now, every destructible entity has a core which must be targeted to destroy the entity (whether it be a tower, an energy gate or the colonization module).

NewEntity_Cores

Those cores, made of pure energy, will take two different shapes: a destructible (the first on the image) and an indestructible shape (the second one on the image). Building entities must be destroyed in a specific order: if an entity is the first, its core becomes destructible while the following ones keep being indestructible.

Cores being the only objects destroyable during the training on Stage 375, we essentially got rid of the holograms and replace them with reusable structures which retract whenever their cores are destroyed! Technology is great. Here is a preview of Energy Heroes’ entities (alpha version) at their initial evolutionary stage. Do not hesitate to tell us what you think about it.

NewEntity_MinionsNewEntity_TowersNewEntity_EGatesNewEntity_Modules

See you soon, we’ll show you the buildings upgrade system with some new visuals!

Xarden, art factory


Give Energy Heroes the green light!

Fellow gamers and steam users, hello!

We hope you enjoyed the surprises we unveiled this month. The launch of the community website and the release of the gameplay video bring us closer to our next objective: the alpha release scheduled in a few weeks.

Meanwhile, you can join our first registered users and interact with them on the forum or on our social networks.

If you still haven’t watched the gameplay trailer, here is your second chance:

June is not finished yet and we still have announcements to make. Are you ready to support us on Greenlight?

We hope so, because Energy Heroes is now ready to receive your votes on Greenlight. What are you waiting for? Give Energy Heroes the green light, vote for the project and “Change the way you fight!” with us!

J0GreelightVote

As an indie studio, your opinion matters a lot to us because it permits us to make a game you will enjoy. Do not hesitate to share your opinion and give your suggestions about the game.

Stay tuned, other announcements will come very soon! Like, share and make some noise for Energy Heroes!

Cactus, the green communication



Local Alpha Test #1

Greetings! After a long rush period, we are back on the devblog to speak about the test session which took place last week at our studio!

Last weekend, we accepted about fifty people to realize a first wave of tests on Energy Heroes. It was an occasion for us to see how the principles of the game are welcomed by the players. An occasion to go out from the production routine and to see the defiant bugs we will have to track until gotten rid of.

Alpha_01We received a lot of feedback that we will take into account! Let’s do a quick review of it. The game concept has been really well greeted by the players, and this is awesome! There remains some feedback gaps on the HUD, but we’re already working on it, including some bugs that made our developer die twice during the test session (we had to rez him, twice). However nothing too serious. We are ready for the next step, called «Debug, debug, debug, pursuit of the operations»!

For the most curious of you, the alpha tester could test:

  • The quasi entire 3v3 map, called «Stage 375» and its features,
  • Two «finished» characters: Kurt and Cornalyx,
  • Two characters not fully implemented: Azura and Spade.

Alpha_02The DSC Studio22 team wants to thank every person that made the move and fulfilled their duty of alpha tester! We want especially to thank the ECV students and their teacher Adrien of the Black Flag studio, the association Mandora and Flat226 for their help and their support!

Stronger than ever, we are more than motivated to engage in the upcoming events, such as the online alpha test (yes, yes), to test our servers and our out of the game system.

We will catch up soon to speak about the upcoming festivities… Stay tuned! 😉

J0TestXarden, energetic battery


Interfaces

Greetings, it’s the second coming of the graphic’s side of the force. After a presentation of the matchmaking last time, here is a video with a piece of our animators’ work, today we will introduce you with another important side of Energy Heroes: the in-game interface.

In-game and out of game interface

The out of game interface, which won’t be approached today, will allow the player to manage his account, check his stats and successes, buy some stuff, prepare his games, and interract with the community. It’s a puzzle thingamajig on several points (even too much points).

The in-game interface will allow the player to have at any moment information on the game at hand, his ammo, and his cooldowns (skill availability time).
It has to be practical, readable, usable in any circumstances and above all, it has to be compatible with the  BG-140 semantic comprehension module. Ah, I, … No, it’s not the same topic.

J0Interface

Space

We are doing a game which goes out of the ordinary. A mix between TPS and classic MOBA, a MOSS as we titled it. We need then a TPS interface displaying as much information as the MOBA’s one: a MOSS interface.

A reactive interface, which doesn’t become a timeout, or a drag. The in-game interface of Energy Heroes has been made in order to allow the player, in a blink of an eye, to see the information that he wants to see, whithout losing the battlefield from sight. Here is how we use the space:

HUD_ZoningIn gray are the permanently displayed parts (information on the weapon, on one’s own character, etc.) and in blue are displayed the foldable elements. These elements, or rather screens, are organized by category:

  • F1: Teams – It displays the players of the game, their objects, their life, energy bars, and some more useful information.
  • F2: Character – Where one has access to stats and objects of his own character.
  • F3: Map – Which displays itself in full screen for more readability of the map.
  • F4: Skills – It displays information on the character’s skills and allows to make it evolve.

 

In the end

Here is a little overview of this in-game interface, as it was thought. For the alpha, the interface may slighty change, but currently the teams are only composed of 3 players. Interfaces in Energy Heroes are propulsed with Scaleform and Unreal Engine 3. They are made under Flash.

HUD_D01_F1Team

That’s all we will tell you on the interface for the moment! It’s not fun if we spoil everything at a moment, so until next time !

See you soon!

Xarden, graphic interface


Choice of one’s team

This is a revolution!

Let’s talk about a topic often ignored and which in a lot of games, can be a source of great frustration: the matchmaking system.
Who has never wanted to leave it without penalty, simply because the proposed team wasn’t of your taste? Who has never went crazy, because the internet connection was interrupted at the worst moment, during the launch of a MOBA party?
Energy Heroes, based on a MOBA model, proposes a matchmaking system concept allowing the player to choose his team and even to discuss about it before going to the battlefield without any penalty if he changes his mind, and without any time limit to do so.

 

Put into practice

The principle of the system is based on rooms. It means that once the player has chosen the game mode, the player will then be sent into a room named “Squadron” in the game.
In it, the player will chose the character he wants to play, and the different content proposed. (skin, modules, etc.)
The player will be joined by other players of the same level who will have to do the same actions.
No time limit for the choice will be imposed. Every player will confirm his selection and once the whole team will have confirmed, the system will look for another Squadron with the same level.
During the selection process, players will be able to discuss about the characters to pick, and in case of disagreement or absence of one of them, they will be able to leave the room without penalty or kick an unwanted player, always without penalty for anyone.

J0Salon

 The purpose

The most important advantage is, obviously, the inexistence of constraints during the matchmaking step.
The system can be a bit slow if the players are taking time to choose and discuss of the strategy to adopt during the game, but it can also be extremely fast if the players want a quick launch. It’s up to the players!
Moreover, the system can be improved and allow players, for example, to create a Squadron, invite friends and keep some places reserved for random players.
Another advantage to highlight is that both teams are not made at the same time, and are not pre-selected. On our side, we are going to work on the matchmaking system in order to observe some rules, as the “mirror” inexistence (two players with the same character) or the balancing of the level of the squadron.

To conclude, I would say that the aim of this matchmaking system is to give to player as much time as they want and to avoid the frustration often created by the classic systems.

Lunder, team dispatcher


The Art behind Energy Heroes – Part 3

Greetings and welcome to stage 375 aboard the SCD Manta!

The Manta (also known as the manta ray) is a huuuuuge interstellar space ship of 8 x 5 km. Among a real intergalactic city, this ship hosts other things such as the training and simulating stages of the SCD, which allows to train new unaffected mercenaries on board this vessel.

SCD Manta - Concept

One of the many training rooms with a view of the interstellar void is the scene of a ranged battle of 3 versus 3. No material stakes in this pseudo-war. Every entity has been replaced with advanced holograms which have a tangible existence. The projectiles are stopped by their magnetic fields. The choice to equip the training rooms with holograms is mainly funded with the economic side of it: the bill would be salted if it was real equipment!

Concerning minions, projectiles and weapons, they are real. It wouldn’t be funny otherwise.

Entities

As previously explained, many entities are placed and mirrored on both sides of this training room: two Defense Towers, an Energy Gate and a Colonization Module. In order to make things easier, a color code has been established on both sides to distinguish the two sides: red for E’Nyhm and blue for Qen’Ory.

To avoid jealousy, the orange color has been dedicated to the SCD equipment and more commonly, to the « neutral » objects.

Therefore, it will be easy to see with a blink of an eye what side of the map we are on. Of course, it won’t prevent some bad-sighted Jorvaks to return into the wrong base for some shopping…

The environment

The SCD provides the mercenaries boarded on the Manta, geostationary orbiting over Syrh, its technical advanced training stages in order to prepare for incoming conflicts.

DreamDestination

If you like the cold contact of metal, solid armatures, purified lines and vast ventilated spaces, then stage 375 is for YOU!

These training stages also have a pretty view of the interstellar void and the Omega system. To reassure the most fearful of you, the bay windows of the Manta resist to any type of impact. It simply can’t have unforeseen issues during a training session, at least not of this kind. Anyway, for now, there have been no problems…

Reports affirm that a compartment full of J0 drone models have been, by mistake, ejected a few days ago. If ever, while in a training session you see a J0 take a walk outside, please quickly inform the Jorvak Manta’s engineers to bring them back in the ship.

See you!

J0_Space

Xarden, tour guide


A prickly issue

I’m not so sure on how I gonna bring this to the public, so I’ll be blunt with you. This is not a post about Energy Heroes complex creation process or weird fantasizing on graphics and game design, but about an unexpected founding following the last posted video.

Cactus_videoI think you’ve all seen it on the foreground: a cactus.

You think it’s usual? You think it’s been created by some schizo graphic dude and settled by a paranoid level designer?

Actually, not at all, we found it at the same time as you did and preferred not to take the risk of touching a thing.

However we still investigate.

We questioned all and every graphic designer in the company, even the trainees, to get to know who modeled and inserted this cactus, but none of them answered despite our threats.

Even worst, as I was adding new elements to the under construction map setting, I discovered others, of course I preferred not to touch a thing as I didn’t know who putted it there.

Cactus_4Yet, I wish to reassure you all, after a week of investigations we finally found the one to blame for that mess. And in the end, it all made sense.

The culprit was no other than our pet cactus!

Cactus_2Then, after we made clear to him how important it is not to touch the game engine, we removed all the cactuses, and wish we didn’t forget one.

Lunder, Spiky detective


The Art behind Energy Heroes – Part 2

Hi, here we go again on the graphic side of the force! Last time we skimmed trough Energy Heroes artistic guidelines, today will take a closer look on the game characters, which are the vibrant core of this game. We naturally won’t disclose everything not to spoil the fun (for ourselves).

At the very beginning of this project, which already means a while ago, we decided to settle a few racial archetypes so the characters will take place and act within more or less numerous nations and cultures. Out of this saga in unknown space came three races, today known as Humans, Nelmas and Jorvaks.

Humans

Humans from planet Layem are visually just typical ones: Humans settlers originally from Earth, they belong to the most significant of seven existing colonies. As conditions between the two planets are alike they remained identical to earthlings in their appearances and customs.

Arch_SizesIf truth be told this archetype was the first we created, we used it as a reference.The others were drawn from this first example. For now they are the shortest out of three species, Jorvaks are actually the most husky ones and Nelmas are in between.

Nelmas

Nelmas first took place on Nelmo. Tall and slender, they’re known as spiritual intellectual mastering advance technology which enable them to explore space.

Their distinctive feature is to link themselves to a mineral during their teenagehood. This requirement comes out as an initiation ritual where the young Nelmas got to choose a matching stone before binding with it. Cornalyx for example chose a sharp and fiery rock discovered as planet Vhotz was getting destroyed. From the ritual on, mineral outgrowth are a part of Nelmas just like hair on human body.

Arch_NelmasAnother characteristic of this race is their blue toned skin which go from light to dark blue, sometimes with darker marks.

Jorvaks

Jorvaks are natives of Planet Jok, no kidding. Known as kind of dumb but skillful craftsmen able to transform pretty much anything into (not always) useful items, those muscular Cyclops are usually employed and sometimes used as workforce. Murky slavery business painfully stains the history of this otherwise peaceful specie which slowly evolves through creative trance.

Arch_Jorvak

Forceful but non threatening, they got horns, small ears and a three joints articulated jaw.

Hinori used those racial archetype to produce concepts of characters (Elyah, Azura, Larho …). Down the road there will be other races, but for now only those three are unveiled.

Here ends this focus on characters, their origins and the art behind it! Next time we’ll meet on board of SCD Manta the SCD spaceship with its training room for advanced mercenaries.

Xarden, stylus tamer

J0Famille


What’s the plan?

Just after Syalen will be done ripping off my gut for the title pun, I shall finally get to describe and show you the game map.
Indeed until now, we broadly described the game and I think now it’s time to get into some key details.

The universe

As  explained earlier in the synopsis, you gonna embody a bunch of soldiers of fortune who belong to a corporation called SCD, hired to supply all military resources necessary to sustain the upcoming conflict between the two top notch superpowers of the known universe.

This conflict is regulated by a council who watches over the conflict and keeps it under control in order to avoid entire systems and planets being dragged and destroyed in an uncontrolled conflict. The SCD served then as a buffer zone.

However, in orbit around the planet the troops train on waiting for the conflict to fly off the handle and SCD contingent to unload on Syrh.

And here is where YOU move to the action as the first map will feature SCD trainingship, a space nave designed by SCD where diverse conditions of the upcoming conflict have been reproduced.

J0_Devblog_Article_Map

Overview

Here, inspect the plan of your future battlefield.

LayoutMap-1

Ground rules of the game

This first mode will confront two teams of three players.
As settled previously, Energy heroes is a TPS on which we added MOBA rules. Then there will be towers, boosters, henchmen and a main building per team.

Nonetheless, those elements were adjusted to match the overall outline of TPS gameplay, the towers don’t have limited range anymore and will shoot at you as soon as they detect you, to put them down, you’ll have to aim their central energetic core.

The Boosters will be shaped in an arc of a circle and all henchmen of your faction passing under will see both their power and resistance increased.

Two kinds of henchmen will be present, short ones who will have to get close to shoot and larger ones with longer range behind those you’ll have ways to hide.

And finally, the main building will display towers which you’ll have to destroy before tearing down the structure itself.

Also, need  to remember, both henchmen and towers weaponry have dispersal, that means you can dodge a bullet by rolling, crawling or seeking cover, but watch out for stray bullets!

In a next post I’ll extensively go through the features of each building.

The goal of this map will be to destroy the two defense towers which lay along the main access then wreck the booster and finally the main building starting with its own defense towers. The classic arrangement of MOBA’s ground rules.

 

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When level design meddle in

Energy Heroes stroke of originality also lies in well crafted level design. The trainingship map will play out on several levels and in this mode dynamic and interactive elements will be an integral part of  the game strategy.

For instance the central room, right in the middle of the map, is cut apart from main access by two doors, one on each team side, when both are closed henchman can’t pass  and the defense tower can’t reach any enemy within the central room. However players will be able to open or to shut those doors by getting to the switches.

I let you imagine what will happen if they do so…

 

To conclude

This map has been designed to mix up MOBA’s ground rules, TPS dynamism and the depth of a 3D map.

Naturally it’s still a work in progress which will surely evolve as we’ll run tests and thanks to feedbacks .

Lunder, Interior Architect

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The Art behind Energy Heroes – Part 1

Greetings! Today we are going to discuss the artistic side of Energy Heroes. We will talk about what we want to do with it and the direction we are taking.

Our computer graphics team is composed of four artists with many technical skills, some even make coffee. This team pursues all of the visual production of the game with joy, happiness and over-motivation (sometimes helped by energy drinks).

GraphdevBlogThe concept artist was exploited for the sake of this article.

Generalities and the graphic universe

Energy Heroes is a game we want pleasant to look at, immersive and entirely spectacular. The graphics must not be a break to the gameplay and the pleasure felt by the player.

Coming from the geek knowledge of the 90s and 2000s, we fish in a lake of sci-fi inspirations, going from Star Wars to Stargate, Star Trek or Dune. With gamer souls for most of us in the studio, everything is good for us to take as inspiration in order to realize the named Energy Heroes alchemy, with one main will: create an original game which the universe is based on sci-fi.

droiddevBlogWe can summarize what we want to do with Energy Heroes to this: our game has to be coherent with the scenario and the proposed gameplay. Although are able to go farther and say that the graphic production of the game will have to enrich the scenario and the gampelay, or at least to enforce it or to justify it. It is, for example, unthinkable to put a cactus in the middle of a big room of a spaceship. Having said that…

cactusdevBlogBeing an indie video game studio, we made the choice to realize comics-like graphics. Our will is absolutely not to risk ourselves in realistic graphics, which are yet often made for TPS. We want to show fun and a universe that is ours, not a reality replica.

The sum is then colored, concrete, and creates a proper identity to the game that will become Energy Heroes. Concepts, screenshots and our progression will be revealed as we go along with the production.

There it is for a first approach of the artistic plan of Energy Heroes! Next time, we’ll speak about the characters and their respective appearances!

Xarden, Art Dictator

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From TPS to MOBA game, and not the other way around

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Definitons

Before going through the details of what Energy Heroes really is and explaining the thought process which has given birth to a strategic shooter, it would be interesting to define the different game styles which have inspired us.

First of all, the TPS, “Third Person Shooter” is a shooter video game in which one sees his character thanks to a positioned behind view camera which follows the players movements. Moreover, in a shooting game there is an aim system and in many of them a taking cover system.

The second style is the MOBA, “Multiplayer Online Battle Arena”.

To make it simple, the MOBA title can regroup every multiplayer game which are not coop.
But namely, this name style concerns a very specific type of game. Former mod of Warcraft III, called Defense of the Ancients (DotA) started the MOBA genre. The “MOBA” title was broadcasted by Riot Game and is now employed for every DotA-like, as Dota II, League of Legends or Smite.

The principle is quite simple: two teams of five players will fight in order to destroy the enemy base. In this purpose, they will have to respect many conditions and will be able to level up their character, becoming more and more powerful as the game progresses.

Veteran players, don’t be upset, it was only a chainsaw-cut version of what are really the MOBA and TPS game styles.

 

In the begining…

Now, let’s speak about Energy Heroes and its beginning. How did the game idea come to us?
Energy Heroes was supposed to be a MOBA. Yet another one.

The problem was: how to make us be a different MOBA? How can we propose to you, the player, something completely new?

In order to find answers to these matters, we had to deeply define the MOBA genre, which today is a very famous style, and what can be modified without losing the spirit of this game style.

Three points were found.

The first of them was evidently the universe, the lore: existing MOBA games are based on a medieval-fantasy world. What about making our game in another world, and possibly in another universe?
Our choice was sci-fi. Furthermore, we decided to make it really present in the game, creating a scene filled dimension for it. A whole world, we said.

Second point was the view, the camera position. The kept idea was to place the camera behind the avatar. Here came the TPS inspiration.

Finally, the map. The game being in 3D, it would have been sad to keep a map without relief. So we had relief, with a vertical dimension, modifying the paths leading to the two sides. We made worth; we cut the map in two levels, one on the surface, one in the underground, permitting to make the environment rich, different and adding possibilities to the map.

 

The result

Thanks to all these observations, one thing came to our mind: we set sail from a MOBA and in a gameplay view, we only had to change the camera place. But it has already been done before us, and that wasn’t what we wanted to do with Energy Heroes.

Therefore, in order to realize something new, we should not have the MOBA as the base, but the TPS.

The project has then made a complete turnaround to this style. During the studies and reflections, we had in mind a lot of questions, with one most important: Why is the camera behind the avatar?

Well, with a third-person view, one can see his character! One can see it jump, run, make incredible things! The kind of stuff we cannot see with a first person camera, huh?

Consequently, we decided to add TPS actions, like the sprint, the roll, taking cover, etc. in order to spotlight this third person view.

But if we change the MOBA basic gameplay, we have to change the entities (towers, heroes, etc.) functionality as well.

Explanations: in a MOBA, towers have a limited fire range and hit every time. But in a TPS, the player has a quasi-unlimited fire range. If we chose to take the TPS as reference, we had to change the towers range, and not the player’s one.

We adapted the towers so that they may not to have a limited range, but they don’t hit every time. We of course adapted the level design in order for our character to take cover to be able to evade the tower’s projectiles. The base gameplay stays coherent with the TPS game style and we obtain something… original.

Moreover, we adapted the level design to every idea we had on the TPS game style.

Every element of the MOBA game has been reflected in this perspective, in order to differently implement them. The principle stays the same, but the way it is done are totally different.

These are the reason why Energy Heroes is not a MOBA, nor a TPS, but a MOSS: a Multiplayer Online Strategical Shooter.

Lunder, headache dispenser