A lot has been going on since I last touched on our Synaps project, which has now been officially titled Iron Synapse. This change is greatly due to the overall change of theme for the game. Fundamentally the game is still greatly based on the classic Chinese strategy game GO, but instead of the sleek web 2.0 style we have chosen to go with a more industrial appearance. This has been greatly influenced by the character designs which I shared in my last blog entry.
For the last week and a half I have been working on updated all of the ingame art, excluding the characters. This includes all of the interface, logos, buttons, bars, counters, timers etc. While it has been a daunting task, it has been a fun and educational one! Most of the content I have created is not all that interesting individually but I am excited to share it as whole in future updates.
Included in all of this work I updated the Map tiles; two point Elbo tiles for the corners, three point Tee tiles for the sides and four point cross tiles for everything in between. Using procedural generation we can create any Map size using these three different tiles, which reduces the amount of content we have to create as well as the amount of content that the client/user has to load before playing.
You will also notice in the sample of the Map alphabetic and numerical coordinates on the top on left side of the image. These coordinates will be shown on all four sides of the complete map which is common in most strategy games like Go and Chess etc. To utilize a unique Font and glow effects, these tiles had to each be created by hand. There are 21 numerical tiles and 21 alphabetical tiles.
Creating each of the coordinate tiles was daunting, but I also had the pleasure of updating the Node and Power Nodes art as shown above. Starting from the left side you will see the red and blue Nodes, or Basic Node. These Nodes make up most of the game and will be seen throughout the entire game. Each of the other Nodes are Power Nodes which have unique functions. Starting from the left is the Strong Node, which can never be captured making them a great way to secure sections of your wall. The next Power Node type is a Spiked Node, which will subtract points from your opponent if they capture it, detouring them from doing so. The Power Nodes with the Golden rims are called Rich Nodes which grant the controlling or capturing User additional points. Lastly is the Power Node without a color, this is called the Hollow Node. This Node can be played directly over the top of opposing Node to immediately capture them turning them into a Node of User.
While we slowly complete and add the remaining features we are ramping up greatly on or content development and my hopes are that we can begin sharing the revised and cleaned up version of the characters really soon, as well as actual ingame screen captures with the new art.