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Welcome to the first devlog of my new Unity game development project! After a tumultuous year with previous game attempts, I’m back with a new project that I’m committed to finishing. Here’s a look at the journey so far and the initial steps I’ve taken to bring this game to life.

From Setback to New Beginnings

Earlier this year, I encountered several setbacks with a game called “Beneath the Boughs.” After paying the Steam fee and starting development, I discovered a conflict with my day job’s moonlighting clause. Despite eventually getting permission to continue, the whole experience left me burned out. I decided to abandon the over-scoped project and start fresh.

Rediscovering a Low-Scope Project

With a Steam credit and permission to release a game, I revisited old projects for inspiration. I found a challenge game from January 2022 that was originally created in one hour and polished over a week. Although my initial video about this game flopped, I realized the project had potential due to its low scope and fun gameplay.

Upgrading and Refactoring

I booted up the project in Unity, upgraded to the latest LTS version, and started reviewing the code. Since it was a jam-style game, the code was rough, but there weren’t many scripts to handle. I planned to rewrite the systems to make them more expandable and connected the project to version control on March 31. In the past two months, I’ve made significant progress, with the project now at 69 commits.

Enhancing Core Systems

Saving and Loading System: I developed a more robust and extensible saving/loading system. While I’m debating whether to encode the save files, I’m not too concerned since it’s a single-player game.

Mutator System: I designed a mutator system with future modding support and Steam Workshop integration in mind. Mutators are scriptable objects that tweak gameplay, like slowing everything down except the player or reversing controls. Players will eventually be able to create and share their own mutators.

Ability System: The player ability system was reworked using scriptable objects to define abilities. Abilities are categorized into three tiers, from simple dashes to powerful ultimates. I also rebuilt the upgrade system, allowing players to enhance starting abilities and acquire new ones. Enemies will also use this system, making for more dynamic gameplay.

Streamlined Development Tools

Rewired Integration: I replaced Unity’s input system with Rewired, which has proven to be much easier to work with.

Odin Inspector: I integrated Odin Inspector to streamline development, adding useful features like inspector buttons without writing custom editor code.

Looking Ahead

With core systems in place, I can now focus on content creation, such as adding more enemy types. If you like what you see, please wishlist the game on Steam using the link in the description. I have a Trello board full of tasks to complete before the project is finished and welcome any suggestions in the comments below.

Thank you for following along on this journey. I’m excited to continue sharing the development process and look forward to your feedback!

By focusing on refining systems and streamlining development, I’ve laid a strong foundation for this new project. Stay tuned for more updates, and feel free to support the project on Patreon for exclusive access to test builds.