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Piggy Payback! Our Devblog Is Live!

We are finally posting in real time, people. Due to the issue we had with our original blog hosting site, we lost all of our posts and had to start from scratch. This caused us to have to post about updates we did in the prior weeks and months due to the time constraint. But we are all caught up! We're excited about our new WIP UI/menu system, specifically, so please read on!

We set up some logic in the Bird blueprint to allow us to make some of the birds moving birds. We can set then to move vertically or horizontally. Soon we'll be able to move them diagonally, in a circular motion or any other way we need. These birds are harder to hit and thus, will be worth more points. We have two problems, however. The bird has a jerky motion at the top of its movement path, and we can’t get it to move the distance we want. No matter what we put in the TravelDistance variable, it moves the same distance up and down. We will return to these issues once we have a fix.

We also started to create a Crow-Bomb. A black bird that hovers in place until hit by the pig. It then bounces around the level, unaffected by gravity and then blows up after 5 seconds, taking out any birds or eggs within its vicinity. The player gets to collect those points and keeps the birds and eggs. The character’s name will be Clyve-Bomb Crow. We're using a placeholder mesh for the crow character so far, so no point in showing an image. The explosion will take a half second to go from 0 to full size and it looks really cool as it takes out farther and farther collectibles. The Clyve part is after a pet crow Bo’s grandpa used to have that liked to try to get drunk off of vinegar…

Got some SFX and music and added them to the win and lose screens. On the win screen there is a short, happy/triumphant song over a positive chime and an applause SFX. On the lose screen there is a short sad trumpet song and we have a bunch of bird laugh sounds that play randomly each time the lose screen appears. Similar to that dastardly dog from Duck Hunt!

We have another big announcement to make. We’re working on a brand new menu for the beta project. Not just new elements, but the entire menu system is being either created or overhauled. It’s still a work in progress but we really like the new elements, the animations of the buttons and text, the new 2D characters added to the different menu screens…even the animated shine on the Boar Bucks icon looks amazing! We will continue to add to this menu in the future, and we’re hoping to have a carousel-style level select menu for the final game, if possible.

Another important thing we did was finally setup source control. Until now we’ve been sending the project back and forth between the 2 programmers to work on it. This wasn’t a problem since we’ve kept the project small and tidy, but we decided it was time to finally implement source control. With a couple minor hiccups, we’ve now got it running nicely.

We also made multiple minor fixes to the project and did a bunch of mobile performance tweaks. Since this is Bo’s first mobile game, he didn’t realize how optimized the project had to be to run smoothly on a mobile device. Our first demo didn’t work on two of the phones that people used to try it. These phones were 6 and 7 years old. Although most people have newer phones, we still want to make the game as performant as possible so more people can play Piggy Payback! One of the fixes we did was turning off HDR. Since we’re not using a Post-processing volume, and most of our meshes have unlit materials, it seemed like the right thing to do.

We previously added the stylized wooden boards to the project to replace the logs. Right away we noticed a problem. The pig was not bouncing off of them like it was with the logs. We already gave it the same physical material, but the pig seemed to lose all its energy when it hit the boards. So we turned on CCD (Continuous Collision detection) and changed the collision pre-sets from default to block all. This solved the problem, and now the pig Bounces off it nicely.

And that's a wrap! We're so excited to tell you everything we've been doing in Piggy Payback! And we're very grateful to those of you who are following us. It's hard to show how much fun a game can be with just pictures, but we know you're going to love this game once you play it. Take care!

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Thanks! We're really glad you're enjoying our updates to Piggy Payback! Feel free to get in on the conversation on our Discord server :)

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