Devlog #12 - Fishing Fixes

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I’m back and working on Dinkum! After driving 4000km through the Australian outback, I had plenty of time to think about Dinkum and be inspired by the scenery. Its been a little hard getting into the swing of game dev since getting back. But here’s what I’ve been working on.

There is now a title screen!

This would normally be something I would add at the end of development, but as the game has increased in size, so have the loading times. This meant more waiting every time I need to test even a small change. The title screen helps with this. Not only does it set everything up over a couple of frames instead of one, but the title screen will also load all the tiles and objects before the players and animals are loaded in.

I think it looks cool and was a fun little project to jump back into coding after nearly a month off.

Something I’ve wanted to work on for quite some time was improving the fishing. Initially, fishing was kind of boring. You would cast and the fish would grab your lure regardless, then you were required to reel the fish in while it struggled. The whole thing could be achieved by holding a button and had no challenge at all.

So I’ve spent a fair amount of time this week making it a bit more challenging and fun. The fish will now spook if you reel your bobber to much or too close to them. When a fish is interested in your bobber, they will start nibbling at it. They will take a random amount of nibbles before biting the lure and making a splash. This is when you will have to quickly reel in to latch the fish. Once the fish is latched you will have to reel them in but if you reel too much while they are struggling they can snap the line and escape.

I think this really has improved fishing and has made them a lot more interesting to catch. The amount they struggle and how fast they can bite is all affected by the value of the fish. So more valuable fish are harder to catch. As a result, I’ve increased the value of all the fish in the game.

One last addition I’m pretty jazzed about is “running” water.

Digging next to water will cause the water to “flow” into the empty tiles. You can also “fill in” water tiles with dirt to remove water. This will allow players to create their own streams and reservoirs for farming and potentially fishing. I’m pretty excited about adding in some other things based on this. Maybe some holes can fill up when it rains? Who knows!

This was actually way trickier to implement than I originally suspected. I had to create a new map to keep track of where water was and save where water had been filled in. As a result, the chunk information sent over the network has been tightened a lot. I might talk about that next time though…

Alright. I’m glad to be back and the break has really refreshed me. I’ll be working on Dinkum over Christmas, so maybe I’ll add a little holiday cheer to show you next time.

Thanks for reading!

James Bendon