Dev Blog – January

Hello, fellow farmers.
We are in 2017, the year in which Orange Season will finally be released. It’s about time I set up a regular dev log, so I decided to do it monthly.
January wasn’t a standard month. I got way too much extra work on my day job and couldn’t focus on the game as much as the previous month. Despite that, I still did a lot of stuff.

The very first thing I did this year, was adding gates to the existing fence system. The fence system is very simple: You buy fences on the carpenter and it will show up on your inventory. When you place them on the ground, they will form an unbreakable fence there. Put several of them side by side and they will connect, creating a real fence. To remove a fence piece, simply press the action button twice near it. Gates work the same way, but you can only place a gate connected to an existing fence. Press the action button once to open or close the game. The only purpose of the gates is to keep your animals from wandering too far.

The next thing I did this month was the Chicken Coop. Despite being a building, the chicken coop can also be stored in your inventory. It needs more available space, but you can place it anywhere in your farm. A single chicken coop can house up to 14 chickens of any color. There are currently 8 chicken colors available.

I also implemented the cows after that, but I still don’t have the sprite animation for milking them, so I’m not showing it yet. Cows are becoming a troublesome animal: they are too big and their hitbox is annoying, as it changes based on the direction the cow is facing. Making them move properly is becoming quite a challenge. And moving through a full barn is another one. I’m thinking about letting the player walk through animals, at least when running, to avoid issues like that. Even a full chicken coop is already hard to move on.

I added several new animals to the game after that. Some of them can’t be bought / found yet, but the game is ready for them. Here’s a full list of implemented animals:

  • Badger
  • Beaver
  • Birds
  • Boars
  • Bulls
  • Bunnies
  • Camels
  • Chicken
  • Chinchilas
  • Cows
  • Dogs
  • Donkey
  • Dromedary
  • Ducks
  • Geese
  • Goats
  • Horse
  • Lizard
  • Monkey
  • Mountain Goat
  • Musk Ox
  • Ostrich
  • Pig
  • Raccoon
  • Sheep
  • Snakes
  • Squirrels
  • Turtles
  • Yaks

Some other animals that I still want to add:

  • Peacocks
  • Drakes
  • Cats
  • Turkeys

My sheep sprite is kind of ugly. Then I realized sheeps are ugly in real life too. I still want a cuter one on my game though.
Around that time I made a video playing the game. It covers one simple spring day:

Some people complained about the lack of brightness in the early hours of the day, so I increased that soon after releasing the video. I also added a few new options. One of them was the the choice of playing with either 30 or 60fps. It should be useful for people with weaker hardware. Choosing 30fps will make the game skip rendering one of every two frames.

I spent a weekend at my hometown in the country side and experienced a little bit of nature for a change. I even climbed an actual mountain path. I didn’t find any item I could ship for money, but I found a squirrel, a lizard and a small field of cassava plants. When I got back home, I added random lizards in the game mountains. I tried to mimick their real life behaviour: When they notice you, they’ll remain still. If you get too close they’ll quickly run away, faster than anything else in this game.

At the same day, I worked on the weather system. Finally implemented random rain days and also left the system ready for storms and snow days. I went a little further and made the game show the weather of your most recent save file on the title screen. Once I have the different season sprites, I’ll do the same with them.

Getting closer to the end of the month, I worked on a bunch of different tasks:

  • Added a schedule for a few more villagers;
  • Implemented the blacksmith with tool upgrades and ore refining;
  • Added Sound Effects;
  • Completed the Task System;
  • Started the Relationship System (Getting friendship points by talking with villagers for working on tasks for them)

Finally, at the very end of the month, I started the mail system. I have already finished it by now, but that counts as february work. You can send and receive letters from villagers and some other special NPCs like the main player’s mom.

For february, my goals are:

  • Make a game trailer
  • Implement the fishing system
  • Add the missing tools (clippers and bell)
  • Add dogs
  • Add a festival
  • Have a basic schedule for every villager in Orange Town
  • Have at least 30 tasks

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