2016.04.30 Boss 101 Update, ROB has your back!


Main Room with ROB, Professor, STEVE and Max

Rob has your back while you fight the good fight!

While you are out battling the latest boss R.O.B. has your back! He’s handling things inside the Command Center with the Professor. In fact he’s got his sights on you while you’re in and out of the Command Center. From his observation deck inside he’s checking on all the latest happenings across your local and galactic systems.

You need not worry about being caught off guard as long as the systems are up and running and ROB and the Professor are on the job. It’s a pretty good thing they are dedicated dudes who take themselves seriously too!

Let’s look over some of the newer systems they recently installed in the Command Center and ones they are installing across the various worlds you track.

Main Action Room

This is their hub. ROB and the Professor work from here and can pretty well tell you about enemy advances as well as the state of your take-out pizza order. (Two of the most powerful abilities known!) Their room has tons of advanced machinery as well as the Professor’s patented surveillance equipment. Check out those webcams and let’s see more of how they work.

Close-up of ROB’s main interface

As with other things we need animated. We start with the art and convert it into .PNGs to animate with. Then we bring things in to a suitable animation program (we use Spine).

Here is the Action Room setup in Spine:

After this we drop it into the game and setup the correct animation triggers for the various parts.

Professor’s Quantum Camera System

Professor Gopher has created a series of cameras for use across any and all systems which need monitoring. You can never be too careful and an advanced warning means a lot when you are up against a serious enemy.

The Professor started in the Command Center with a series of unobtrusive and discretionary cameras. They are respectful of each person’s privacy and are mostly there for quick communication and testing purposes.

Here is one in the Main Command Center Room

A close-up


The setup starts with art and animation.

We added some cool touches we thought sell the idea of a camera taking pictures. A lot of times when we make art for the game the question comes down to “Does this seem fun or will it entertain the player?” If the answer is yes we normally go for it. It’s all well and good to be “real” with effects and designs but in our minds things should above all be fun in Boss 101.

Boss 101 is a story about a boy, his jetpack and their family going up against a gigantic galactic robot army. STEVE and Max (our heroes) will need every bit of help they can get and hopefully you will be there to help them out!

Thanks for checking in today and as always, please remember to live your dreams!

-Tim

2016.04.23 Boss 101, Warping around with the Clicks Ship

Welcome to the weekly Boss 101 update!

Today we are talking about one of the main modes of transportation in the Boss 101 galaxy. No, no the jump gates, I’m talking about good old rockets. Yep, before there were hyperspace jump gates there were rocket ships that carried people all over.

During the time Boss 101 takes place the robo’s are constructing a warp gate network across the galaxy. As you can imagine this gives them a lot of quick shortcuts to various planets.

The Cosmic Clicks Ship


The backstory

As you might know – STEVE and Max shared an adventure with ROB a little while back. In it they traveled about the galaxy in their ship – the Cosmic Clicks. Here’s a shot from that go around:



That was then, this is now

Well, ROB upgraded the ship and outfitted it for new adventures. Now it’s the main transportation for ROB and the professor when they are scouting areas or making repairs in the local solar system. Of course, they only head out when they know the coast is clear since the Clicks ship isn’t really a warship, it’s more like a science vessel. Check out some of the sweet work done!

Here’s the Click Ship all ready for animation tweaks. For scale comparison that green rectangle represents an average game screen. The Clicks ship is big, it needs to be since the engines are equipped with hyperspace jump boosters.

Full ship – green rectangle is playing fiend in standard game

Engines with boosters

Once everything is in the game we can actually send the guys on an adventure. In this case we have some snaps from them shooting around the local star system. Here’s a series of shots of the ship showing some scale and detail.

Warp Gates

As you might notice in some of the screenshots most world have working warp gates, those giant green or purple objects in the background sky. Even with that knowledge ROB and the professor keep the Clicks ship in top form in case they get the call to action.

Warp Gate on a world

Another warp gate sample



The Boss 101 old school way of travel, use your jetpack

When all else fails, there’s always the old fashioned way

Thanks for stopping by for another update and thank you again for the letters and comments. We appreciate your time.

Look forward to hearing from you and remember to live your dreams.

-Tim

2016.04.17 Boss 101, Cute Animal Buddies!

Welcome back to the weekly Boss 101 development update.

We get a lot of mail during the week and one question that came up recently seemed important enough to warrant a direct answer via the main update. Here goes…

“Will I be able to adopt small cute animal friends in Boss 101? If so can they come along with me on missions but remain totally safe and yet possibly help me out by shooting or healing or something?”
-KP, San Diego, CA

Yes! Yes you will be able to adopt small cute animal friends in Boss 101 and bring them along with you. They actually will play a part in the story but we aren’t going to go too far into that during this update. What we can tell you is you can befriend and help out small animals and they can end up staying with you in your main Command Center.

To address any concerns about taking something cute into areas where a flamethrower or guided missiles may be fired we spoke with Professor Gopher and he has been able to create small personal force fields that will keep these cuties 100% safe from harm. So go ahead and bring them along! You might get hit but they will be SAFE!

What kinds of animal friends can you make? We can’t show you all of them in this update but we can show you a few. First up is the guy that started it all, Chilly. Chilly is one of the first small animals you get introduced to in the Command Center. He’s been the one you see in most of the shots of the place (small white bird). He recently got a little scarf on him to keep him warmer and he has been seen flying around with the guys on missions.

Testing out the animations for the Command Center



Testing out the animations for In-Game

Flying in game

We also have Pat-Pat the kitty. He sits in the Command Center doing kitty things but when it’s time to go on a mission he puts on a small cat sized jetpack and flies with you.

Setup animations for the Command Center



In Game

Finally we have Momka the Ferret. He follows you around with his balloon. Basically just chillin’ while the battle happens. He loves you!

Setup for Momka to fly in game

In Game

There you go. Aren’t you excited to see what other ones there are in the game? We’re excited to show you so stay tuned!

Remember to check back and LIVE YOUR DREAMS!

-Tim

2016.04.10 Boss 101 – The Gravity Gun

Welcome back to the weekly development update for Boss 101. Thanks for stopping by and we hope things are going awesomely for you!

Creating a Unique gun for Boss 101 and tuning it

You know Boss 101 is about battling the robot bosses and their minions but did you know we’re giving you some of the galaxy’s most awesome weapons in your fight? Well we are!

We’ve got machine guns, shotguns, pistols. We have bazookas. We even have flame throwers! Did you know we have a few special guns straight from the mind of Professor Gopher in your Command Center? Check this out!

The Gravity Gun

This one is awesome and uses the latest and greatest tech you find in the game. Once assembled it can put the big hurt on the bosses by turning their own power against them. First though – let’s walk through the process of making the gun for the game.

Art and animation prep

Before it gets into the game, we design and create the base art. This is after discussing the basic powers and leveling of the gun. In this case the art below is a Level 1 Gravity Gun which is the weakest Gravity Gun you can get in the game. It’s limited to smaller boss and minion bullets but can still pack a punch.

Here is the art ready for an animation pass…

Once we have everything in we look at making an idle and firing animation for the guns. In this case we setup the basic idles and prepared to import things into the game.

We also created two more versions of the Gravity Gun as upgrades to the base gun. Here is a Level 3 Gravity Gun. A little more powerful looking and a stronger sense of the ‘magnet’ theme.

Once things are in the game we get them functional before we do any serious tuning. Here’s a pass on what to expect from the gun. It can grab enemy bullets and then release them back at the offending party.

For instance, this minion didn’t know what was coming…

Of course, if you get a little creative you can hold the bullet and have a little fun ramming enemies.

There’s more to come as we continue down the path of polish. Keep checking back for more looks at the weapons and the world of Boss 101. We enjoy showing you a little of the time and care we’re putting into everything.

Boss 101 means a lot to us and thanks again for all the letter and the feedback. We appreciate all your support.

Remember to live your dreams!

-Tim

2016.04.03 Boss 101 Dev Update – Panels, Rogues and Polish

Hello and Welcome back to the weekly Boss 101 update! Hope all is going well with you and we are doing AWESOME thank you very much!

Rogues Gallery

In Boss 101 you receive visitors during the game. They stop by the Command Center for a short bit and MAYBE they’ll drop some knowledge on you. One thing about the world of Boss 101, it is big and you will be an important part of it. One of the ways we are helping realize that idea is showing you some of the people in the galaxy. These are other races and cultures affected by the robos. As they say – “an enemy of my enemy is my friend”.

Check out these cats below. They’re called ‘bounty hunters’ at the moment but you might end up knowing them on a first name basis.

The Rogues themselves

Command Center Area (for reference)

Dialog Machinery

So now that we are here in the Command Center let’s talk a little about that dialog panel at the top of the screen. You see the guys chattering away? Looks FUN right? Well we think so but we also know you might need a little break from the constant fun and a way to know when news is really important versus just regular normal important! HAAAAAAAAAAAA!

As part of the polish phase we’re adding in a nice little set of flaps that open and close when a new speaker comes on or you the player activate some important info switch. Check it out!

The animation layout and work

Sample of the panel in operation

Endless Boss Instructions

As part of the polish pass we’re adding in tutorials and instructions where they make sense. In doing that we are looking to keep the spirit of Boss 101. For the most part this means we have the gophers and their buddies helping you out with instructions. Let’s check out the Endless Boss area for an example shall we?

Here’s the Endless Boss area work in progress screen. It has all the things you can expect to see and do including equipping your guns. We used this a reference page when we were designing the gopher instruction panel.

Check out this animation pass setup for the panels working. This is in Spine and has a rough set of instructions for reference.

The same setup in the game

Check out that sweet panel action. A couple of tweaks to the panels and the actual instruction sheet and we should be in business

YES!

There you are folks – another look at the behind the scenes magic we’re working on every single day. It’s all about making Boss 101 something special and we hope you enjoy the process as much as we do.

Thanks and remember to LIVE YOUR DREAMS!

-Tim