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June 24 2018

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Thread Author: chojin
Thread ID: 5260
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Kraut Buster
Sensi
The delay of Kraut Buster is logical.
It's NG.DEV biggest game yet; the size of the environments/adventure got two times bigger, they didn't forsee that.
So for them it feels like producing two games in one. And being a small team, I can imagine it takes a lot of time.

It's finished when it's finished and I don't mind waiting for it. Using more time should benefit the game, aka releasing it as bug-free as possible.
s7.postimg.org/sk9u8o4y3/KOF_new.jpg
 
RiKo
I agree with you Sensi. Don't care how long I have to wait if the game is better for the delay. A lot of people in the NeoGeo.com thread seem to be thinking of cancelling at anyone moment. So anyone who wants a copy might be worth putting your name on the waiting list. Some guy who had inquired told me they had 9 (MVS?) copies left. This was about 2 or 3 weeks back
Mini-Reviews of films I have just watched : http://richwatmov...press.com/
Mini-Reviews of ZX Spectrum games : https://iplayzxsp...ress.com//
 
http://www.youtube.com/user/PhoenixRisen7
Spinmaster
After it's released I may get the AES copy if I can find it for a good price.
 
RiKo
Latest video as of 4th October

YouTube Video


Click on link below if video doesn't appear above

https://youtu.be/...

C-MODE:
It's the first time we show the player character: Jack "Handsome" Rowdy and the "contra" mode (displayed as C-MODE).
The C-MODE mode changes the gameplay to a faster more action and running and crushing oriented gameplay.
With less stops, less energy for enemies and less bullet sponges.
Masks and treasures/collectable/secrets are removed in C-MODE to keep this mode as clutter free as possible.
The player's knife attack is also disabled to keep the gunning flow.
To compensate the "simplicity" of this mode we also added a fast kill score system additional to the timed chain system to increase long time appeal of the C-MODE.
Content of video:
We are showing small parts of mission 3-1 (train ride), mission 3-2 (train yard), mission 4-2 (boat ride),
Mission 3-1 you are fighting your way across a military train towards it's locomotive to stop it.
It has 4 parallax layers. Far away background, background, train, foreground details.
All train cars have a nice full body hand pixelated driving motion effect applied to them.
Mission 3-2 is about battling yourself through the ruins of a bombed village, a train wreck and destroying some experimental weapon system in the train yard.
It also introduces the enemy characters: Vixens of the Dictator "Heiße Helga" and "Herrin Peitsche"
We are only showing the first 60 seconds of ca. 6 minutes.
Both missions are also very military. While mission 2 and mission 4 have monsters, robots and tesla enemies.
Mission 4-2 is about escaping a secret submarine base, the fortified coastal zone and infiltrating the dictator's battle ship.
We are showing the first 60 seconds of the "fortified coastal zone" part.
As you can see in the map screen the game has 9 selectable missions.
Some missions consist of several "rooms" with their own settings and graphic sets. Right now we have about 17 "rooms".
Each mission ends with a proper and individual end boss. All stages also have mini bosses.
Overall game status:
The base game will be finished in December/January.
We included below information of which nice to have graphic details we want to add to the game and will see if you guys give us the time for it or if you guys want an earlier release.
We won't do a vote, we will just go with the general impression of the mood we get from you guys.
If we produce the PCBs in December we can do a release in January. A release in February is advised though.
The allotted graphic development budget of KB will be used up after December, we will then start the next pixel art game for NEOGEO.
Shipping is done as always in this order: MVS LE->MVS RE->AES CE->AES RE (order of payment)
Features that we would like to implement but that need more time:
Details:
- Proper story intro / ending / special ending / new fitting music composed
- 3rd character: Valaria "Bona" Bossa (needs to be drawn from scratch unless we reuse the legs of the guys)
- Proper character select screen
- Character customization: skin color / cloth colors
- Mission select screen (partially implemented as you can see in the video, but we would like to include some fun stuff happening on the map)
- Animated title screen
- Adding more destructibles, parallax scrolling and small background animations in the stages
- Player stage win animation (each character)
- Experimental: Sliding for players in C-MODE to make it even more fluid/speedy (requires extra frames for each character) / can have large implication on gameplay / not sure if it can happen
We redrew some later backgrounds from scratch to boost quality even further.
We redrew most explosions.
Added a fast kill / quickkill score system
Having the game run in 60 fps was also quite time consuming at times and not an easy feature to archive.
While we have up to 2x the amount of objects on screen the engine kinda runs up to 4x times as fluid as similar games on NEOGEO (60 fps instead of 30fps).
A lot of optimizations, trickery and out of the box thinking was required to archive this.
We wrote a new Z80 sound driver for better handling the limited resources and adding new features such as user adjustable music volume.
We are not sure but we think it's the first time that it's possible for the user to adjust music volume in a NEOGEO game!?
All our future NEOGEO games will benefit from those engine upgrades.
It also looks like KB could become a gigashock game as it is approaching 512MEGS for graphic ROMs. Music is already at 512 MEGs.
It would be the first pixel art giga shock NEOGEO game ever.
We added some new hardware features on our custom PCBs, implementing them and using them well will take additional time too:
AES+MVS:
- 64 KBytes EEPROM: for example to save scores / configs / unlocks / achievements / game progress
- WLAN for example to do software updates / worldwide online highscore list
WLAN needs quite some testing both in hardware and software, hopefully it will make it.
Having WLAN on NEOGEO would be quite cool and could lead to interesting stuff in the future.
- GFX ROM doubled in size
MVS:
- Micro SD-Card (software update) to replace USB update. If WLAN does not work out we maybe add this to AES too.
Allows software updates without the need of a connection to a windows PC.
Those hardware costs are covered by us for the existing pre orders.
Best regards,
NGDEV
******************

Edited by RiKo on 27. November 2017 00:20
Mini-Reviews of films I have just watched : http://richwatmov...press.com/
Mini-Reviews of ZX Spectrum games : https://iplayzxsp...ress.com//
 
http://www.youtube.com/user/PhoenixRisen7
shion
So did this release yet?
 
http://www.gamefaqs.com/users/1stTobalMan/contribu
Murikov
shion wrote:

So did this release yet?

Not yet, lately it's been pretty quiet from the devs' part. Recently they only announced a re-release of Fast Striker for the AES, but nothing on this one.

I guess you'll read it first from their Twitter page:

https://twitter.c...
i.imgur.com/aLu1k0m.gif
 
shion
OK, it sounds like the game is in development hell which sucks, because it is killing the hype!
 
http://www.gamefaqs.com/users/1stTobalMan/contribu
RiKo
shion wrote:

OK, it sounds like the game is in development hell which sucks, because it is killing the hype!


I think they are trying to please too many people with the Slug and Contra modes. Really will be a lot of work this type of game for such a small team. It's good they are taking their time over it. I'd rather have a good game late than a poor one on time
Mini-Reviews of films I have just watched : http://richwatmov...press.com/
Mini-Reviews of ZX Spectrum games : https://iplayzxsp...ress.com//
 
http://www.youtube.com/user/PhoenixRisen7
shion
It is indeed good NG Dev Team is taking time to do quality control. However, this bad habit of being unable to deliver is trending among indie studios now. For example, Cuphead (PC), which recently came out of a development hell, only has a metacritic score of 8/10 (not a bad game though).
 
http://www.gamefaqs.com/users/1stTobalMan/contribu
RiKo
UPDATE ON KRAUT BUSTER (from NGDevteam Facebook page)

i.imgur.com/dDZ3Qpy.jpg

NGDEV] Kraut Buster Status May 2018

Dear customers,

here is the latest status:

** Kraut Buster Status **

* Current status and schedule *

You can see a first look of the newly added character Valeria here.
Btw. her hair color is configurable if the color is too extreme for your liking.

The base game is already fully done for a while. We are in the final phase of polishing and detailing.
We can finally see the ends of our to do lists.

Finishing up takes now again about 6-8 weeks.
We will order the PCBs in early June to be ready for an end of July release. Of course beta testing can add 1-2 weeks if unexpected issues come up there. But we will have anything in stock in end of July to be ready at any time.

Reasons why it takes longer again:

General difficulty to estimate time of pixel art.
Art is not a linear process you can calculate by the pixel count and frame count. It heavily depends on style, quality and specific tasks.

Just some examples of many:

As parallax scrolling fells so much better we decided to add it to stage 4-1 too, maybe even 4-2 (both weren't planned before)
Stage 4-2 get small new background animations like sailors on the war ships/dock workers

Boss 1-2 animation needed reworking. It was the oldest boss in the game and not up to standards anymore

Another unplanned task was to give the grunt soldier different personalities. They were a little bit boring.
Randomly picked they get 1 of 4 personalities assigned. Each personality has it's own walk/idle and shoot face animations.
Personalities: stoic / angry / psycho / cold blooded killer

New hardware PCB + programmer add-ons

We created a complete new hardware generation of our PCBs (v2.0 3rd generation).
We switched to a completely different MCU and to a more modern and powerful FPGA as the old ones will be discontinued in the future and/or are getting more difficult and expensive to get a hold off.
Also our production chain/dev kits and cartridge programmers needed an hardware upgrade. All this was more complicated than anticipated and added several weeks too.

Getting GDPR compliant

Current to do list:

Graphics:

Cleanup of intro/ending
Parallax scrolling for mission 4-1/4-2 (nearly done)
Stage win animation for each character
Little things for menus.
Adding small things like small animals to the stages.
Adding animated stuff to the map screen.

Coding:
Menus
Intro/Ending
Hiscore screens
WLAN/wireless

Music:

Finishing up the music.
The intro music is currently missing.

Some sound fx and voice work.

Btw. the shockbox insert of the MVS version will change to the same design we use for the AES CE.
The artworks we used back then belonged to another project and they will return to their original (back then frozen) project.
The Kraut Buster AES regular will get an update of the insert too. The 3rd character (Valeria) will be added on the front cover.

We will show the respective insert shortly before shipping starts.

-----------

Fast Striker AES (reprint) is still scheduled for autumn 2018.

Best regards,
NGDEV

Mini-Reviews of films I have just watched : http://richwatmov...press.com/
Mini-Reviews of ZX Spectrum games : https://iplayzxsp...ress.com//
 
http://www.youtube.com/user/PhoenixRisen7
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