Chrono mechanics

By Ward Dehairs, April 1, 2017

I had just finished most of my master thesis and wanted to get a big stretch of work into the game; finishing the movement system.

The mechanics allow for basic combat and platforming so far, but will still be expanded to allow for some basic puzzles. Features like pushing boxes and the sword ricocheting off terrain are still being implemented.

I was also trying out making some custom character, since I had the idea to take comissions as part of KickStarter rewards later. These characters specifically came from a small-time webcomic called Scrap & Topheavy, the author of which I had met online.

Scrap & TopHeavy Scrap & TopHeavy original

With some more characters and basic movement done, attacking was up next. The hit detection works by tracing out the path of the sword with a series of raycasts. This allows for accurate detection of hitboxes. I turned on some debug features to show the racyasts, as a character takes out his frustrations on a practice dummy.

In hindsight this was a fairly flawed approach, as it opens the possibility to miss in front or behind the enemy, without much player control. the raycasts could also be simplified somewhat using capsule casts, but that's besides the point.

During this time I also designed a secret coding I used later to leave encoded messages troughout Chrono Project.

The following excerpt hides a secret message in a coded language I designed, certain words or phrases encode different letters, allowing to hide a message as a larger, though nonsensical one.

If their son appears real and filthy, then his sister remains law. It was pretty obvious, life seems to be his sister. I do support seriously, but I did not enjoy it. No but still, I've been earning the issue. I've been serving frequently. I don't label readily. The holy man remains special. I do not understand naturally, but what does it mean? The issue has been remembering unexpectedly. I do not remember, it was not the last time. For the first time, their name appears to be their brother. The woman seems harsh, what else? The badger has been counting constantly. The girl has been speaking to specifically, all would soon follow. One month later, clearly his daughter replaces rarely. Firstly, their donkey appears fluid and long. One year later, I like to attack. I do not hug properly. The woman becomes their pet if their brother appears to be his daughter, alledgedly. The man has been deserving seriously. Haven't you been delivering their pet? The stuff of legend ends his body, it was not the last time. School seems light and good. An irreligious man understands the potion. Her partner does not put suprisingly. The next day, the issue remains her donkey. Her mother somewhere changes life. For the first time, the magic sends the shit. I do not squeeze directly, just like it will happen again. The morning hasn't been missing eventually. One year later, their sister wildly pulls the work. Their pet hasn't been returning to their pet, what else? The girl has been explaining to somehow. Haven't you been leaving daily? The potion appears good and physical. A religious man appears to be a religious man, I think. Thirdly, the girl hasn't been buying strongly. His name has been identifying the potion, just like old times. I do not balance smoothly. It was pretty obvious, her partner has been breaking thrillingly. It was pretty obvious, the holy man eventually drops their body. It was pretty obvious, if the badger appears to be his body, then her pet becomes traditional and new. Afterwards, information has been sealing his donkey. His partner hasn't been soothing readily. Their pet seems to be his daughter, but I did not enjoy it. I manage crushingly. If his sister drags the potion, then a religious man seems full. No but still, I do not slap. Her son calmly undresses a religious man. For the fourth time, the morning doesn't arrange directly. I believe that, her pet buries his body. Their mother somehow reaches to time, just now. History becomes short. For the first time, the thing hugs his body. The very next day, school has been rubbing too. Note that school notices thrillingly. I do not question slightly. For the fourth time, I don't agree with. War hasn't been stretching the woman.

Next up are the death mechanics, most importantly ragdollization.

The built in physics engine of Unity is known to have some wonky results, if not used properly. As seen in exhibit A:

Modifying the parameters of the ragdol helps to prevent "spaghettification", but it doesn't remove the source of the problem. The character continues to spasm furiously.

Turns out this was caused by an invisible collider getting dragged along with the character. The ragdol starts to stabilize, when I suddenly notice I forgot to let ragdolling turn off character controls.

The rest of the issues were quickly resolved, leading to a satisfying result.


As an added bonus for you, this tragic and slightly hillarious suicide attempt.

Following this up, I finished making some basic gameplay objects, like pushable boulders crates and levers, along with their basic functionality.

Following this up, I cleaned up the player character movement code, in order to make his movement more general. This allows for rotations and switching to other 2D planes.

And to top it off, I laid down the groundworks for the conversation system, along with a meaty set of animations and facial expressions. This almost gave me enough material to build a first demo of the game, I just needed the most important thing.

At this point there was no more putting off the central game mechanic I wanted, the fabled time rewinding.
I felt unsure if I would be able to implement it all, but as things turned out...