Jun 16, 2017

Suzy Cube Update: June 16, 2017

#SuzyCube #gamedev #indiedev #madewithunity 
First off, some apologies. Sorry for the missing update last week, I was out of town, and sorry for the late update this week, I've been busy today doing a full playthrough of the game!

I spent most of this week on completing the design of Level 2-4... Ok... Maybe most of my week was spent watching E3 coverage... But a significant portion of my week was spent on completing the design on Level 2-4.

This Level Rocks!

With the completion of the design draft for Level 2-4, Suzy crosses an important milestone. With the exception of bonus levels, which I won't be discussing much in these updates in order to keep some surprises for Suzy's most loyal followers, the entire game can now be played from start to finish!

Heavy artillery!

Now, this isn't to say all the levels are in a shippable state. Many rounds of testing will bring to light issues and fixes to be made, of course, but it does mean that, as far as level design is concerned, from now on it's tweaks and refinements, not blank page design!

So, what of the level itself? As mentioned in my last update, it introduces the Ground Pound power-up along with plenty of rocks and explosives!

Are you a bad enough dude?

Such a setting is, of course, perfect for showcasing the bomb thrower Skulls as well as rocket and bomb lobbing cannons.

I kind of went off script with the design and did a lot of it on the fly while building the space. It resulted in a less by-the-books progression in the end but I'm still confident player are going to have a... BLAST... ... 

ANYWHO... One more thing!

I See You!

Since the start of the project, I've been experimenting with solutions for showing Suzy through obstructing obstacles, much like what the 3D mario games do.

Every technique I tried had issues, though, especially regarding translucency. In the end, I asked Simon Lavigne, of Salad Shark fame, about the feasibility of a dithering based approach. After a little time on GChat, I was able to implement something based on his suggestions!

There you are!

As you can see, the silhouette is drawn using a dithering pattern which, though quite apparent in this GIF, is nearly invisible on the retina screen of my iPod.

For the currious, the implementation isn't actually all that fancy or optimized and does require drawing Suzy twice. I simply applied two materials to her mesh, one, drawn first, which is a solid colour, ignores depth information and is rendered using a dithering pattern, then the 'normal' shaded material, complete with Z read/write on top. 

By playing around with the render queue order of other materials, I was able to avoid ugly artifacts by ensuring that certain objects like pickups, enemies and particle effects are drawn after Suzy ensuring her silhouette effect never appears overtop those objects.

Well, that's it! It's good to be back after taking a week off and it's REALLY good to have a full set of levels to start iterating on. Speaking of which, next week, I'll be concentrating on organizing things for the next big round of testing! So if you've been anxiously waiting to test the game, rest assured it won't be long now. I won't make any hard promises, but I'm certainly hoping to get a build ready by the end of next week! So check back in next Friday, ciao!


  1. Hi good night I am from New York i saw it a video of you trying a demo at GDC for iOS when is the game is going to be realse Apple need game like that

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  3. That's really nice of you to say, but, unfortunately, I've got nothing to announce as far as a release date is concerned. Stay tuned to the updates to follow along, though.