As promised last week, here’s another post about “Deck” creation that has, for the moment, become “team creation” while we think of a better name. A few months ago, I told you I didn’t like using the term “Deck” because WAVEN is not a TCG. You won’t be opening boosters to get cards… And you won’t be collecting any.
No! All your spells (50 per class) will be given to you little by little from the start of the game. You’ll choose to develop certain ones rather than others, and you’ll choose eight of them to build your game. So yes, your spells will rotate, and you’ll draw them in fights. And yes, I will admit that the eight spells you select will be placed in a “Deck”… But ultimately, the interface that will allow you to manage all this consists of more than just that. In it, you’ll also choose your weapon and the four companions that you want to play in combat. I therefore think that talking about “team creation” is most suitable for the moment. What the heck, WAVEN certainly isn’t a card game, and I think that it’s getting important to avoid saying anything to make it seem like one.
With WAVEN, we’re mixing multiple gameplay styles. And reading some people’s comments on the internet talking about a new TCG or MMO, I realize how important it is that we succeed in giving our projects a genre. And at the same time, it’s getting on my nerves. We’ve worked with the team on a few different games, and WAVEN is a patchwork of all these past experiences. The main objectives of this project focus on, first and foremost, the desire for dynamic turn-based combat. Whether it’s PvP or PvM, we’re trying to offer a new experience. And in the end, the game will borrow from various genres, while not bearing a well-defined label itself.
We’re going to cut to the chase, and you’ll understand what I’m trying to explain above just by looking at the team creation interface.
In the end, after a great deal of discussions and exchanges, we found a system that works rather well. The major challenge was displaying a lot of content while keeping it light and ethereal in terms of proposals. So, Franho worked extensively in that direction and gave us a proposal that I think is amazing. There’s obviously a flashy side to it, because it’s nice… But that’s not where the achievement is. No, the achievement comes from knowing how to keep it light despite the mass of information and interactions necessary for this interface.
Analyzing the JPG above, you’ll discover the three main parts that will let you form your team and define your gaming style.
- THE EIGHT SPELLS: On the right, you’ll find what we could call the “Deck”. It’s what’s closest to a TCG because it consists of eight slots where you can place your spells. I’ve already talked about that; each class has 50 spells: 10 spells in each of the four elemental branches and 10 spells that we’ll call the “cardinal spells”. The latter are multi-elemental spells that are highly specific – so specific that I may just devote an article to them in the weeks to come.
- THE FOUR COMPANIONS: On the left are the slots where you can choose four companions to join you in combat. You’ll clearly have to be careful to use companions relevant to your elemental spells. If you choose companions that are summoned with “water” gauge levels but your spells are of the “fire” type, you might miss out on combat support.
- THE WEAPON: And finally, in the middle, underneath the character illustration, you can make out the slot reserved for your “weapon”. It’s funny, because while writing this article, I realize that it isn’t prominent enough with regard to how important it is. I don’t know if I’ve already talked about it, but there’s only one item of equipment in WAVEN: the weapon. In the first versions, we included rings and other little things like that. But the more the project advanced, the more I got the impression there was no need for all that… In any case, it’s the weapon that’ll give your character color and a “style”. You should also know that each weapon changes every aspect of how your character looks. Each weapon therefore has a corresponding look of its own. The weapon also defines your health points, damage, and MP. Finally, the weapon gives you two passives and a spell, which will appear in your deck automatically.
That means you’ll play with nine baseline spells rather than eight. The willingness to make the weapon as functional as possible comes, most of all, from the willingness to have a clear representation of characters and their actions. Thus, when discovering a XELOR like the one above, you’ll know by and large what their specialties will be. They’ll be free to kit themself out with whichever companions and spells they like.
Below, you’ll find a few videos presenting some of the feedback.
Here’s a small video with what greets you in the team-editing interface.
In the video above, you’ll see how the selection bar at the bottom adapts to the part on which you’re “working”. If you’re editing your spells, the bar at the bottom will display your spells and related shortcuts. The same goes for weapons and companions. It may seem obvious now, but we really had to fight to arrive at this system.
And finally, let’s finish with a little bonus video. Rather than having still images, we’re going to work on an animation for each character. It’s a lot of work, it’s a subtle difference, but it also looks good enough for us to take the time to do it.
And that’s it! We’re already at the end of this post about team creation. I hope you liked it, and I’ll be back next week to present the “beast”: the boss fight. There are major challenges for us in this area, because it’s one of the project’s main original features. I must admit I’m a little excited and overcome with contradictory emotions. Part of me is convinced that it’s going to be great, and another part is saying “Y’know what, blockhead? You haven’t even tried it out yet…”. And rightly so: Until we test it, we can’t be sure it won’t be a disappointment. I’ll explain the concept to you in detail and the verdict will be announced in 2-3 weeks’ times… I’m shaking with excitement!
Excerpt from Tot’s blog, September 20, 2018.
Read the original post (in French) in its entirety.