Devlog #4 - Cultist Astronaut - Deep Dive into Sludge Haven
We're back with more insights into the dark and mysterious world of Cultist Astronaut. Today, we'll journey deeper into Sludge Haven's design, dissecting our unique NPCs, unveiling the significance of artifacts, and previewing the daunting Anybody boss.
Here is our devlog on YouTube if you enjoy video format.
Section 1: The Inhabitants of Sludge Haven - Shared Variables and Character Depth
In Sludge Haven, you'll encounter a handful of NPCs, each with distinct stories and roles. Let's dive deeper into three of these characters: the Eldritch Tourist, Lance, and Jerry.
- The Eldritch Tourist, a fragment of the God of Doom, isn’t just there for an occasional counsel. This character is deeply intertwined with your journey, tracking your interactions with other NPCs.
- Lance isn't merely a stoic Goatling providing historical trivia. Lance’s interactions with you are designed to reflect your understanding and knowledge about the world of Sludge Haven and its inhabitants.
- Then, there's Jerry, a 'Nobody' managing to retain a sliver of identity in a world flooded with Imposters. His persona and interaction will evolve based on your choices.
Section 2: Treasures in Trash - Artifacts of Sludge Haven
Our new artifacts are more than optional treasures; they're lore-filled gems that tell the story of Sludge Haven and the Imposter cult.
We have three unique artifacts to showcase: the Tacklebox, the Cracked Mirror, and the Glowing Scale.
- The Tacklebox: This artifact becomes accessible depending on the stories you hear of Fisher Lee from other NPCs. Each story you collect paves the way to unlock new layers of Sludge Haven's history. This tacklebox contains fishing supplies and a picture of Fisher Lee with his friends at the bar. This artifact has sunken into the depths of a lake and requires Lee himself to fish it out.
- The Cracked Mirror: This mirror was shattered by an Imposter who surprisingly began to regain their sense of self while peering into it. You can find this item in the “Six Falls” secret room which requires you to follow the trash through a sequence of doors. If you get the sequence wrong, you will have to fight a wave of enemies. If you get the sequence right, you will find the hidden room.
- The Glowing Scale: This is obtainable from the Great God Fish. These glowing scales are said to be the source of the fish’s longevity, deceptive nature, and narcissism. You can meet the Great God fish beneath the depths of the Spire. If you attack the egotistical fish enough times, it will bargain for its life with one of its scales.
Section 3: Battling the Anybody Boss: Juggling Multiple AIs
Next, we are excited to share more details about the Anybody Boss.
This boss stands out because of its unique ability to mimic multiple personalities. The complexity extends to the corpses it possesses, each with its own AI (behavior tree) that we switch on and off as the worm jumps between bodies.
The different corpses the Anybody Boss can control, such as the Spore Mage, Flying Gunner, and Goatling, each bring a unique ability to the boss's arsenal, adding depth and challenge to the battle.
- The first corpse is a Goatling Captain who was Lance’s Squad Leader. This Goatling is larger than average and sports a heavy suit, making it very durable. The anybody mimics the player and poses as the gun arm, and utilizes horizontal lash attacks.
- Second is the Flying Gunner. This corpse used to be an alien cat with a heli-pack and a rifle. Anybody can manipulate this body to hover around and attack you from a distance. In addition, the Flying Gunner will have the capability to drop grenades from above.
- The third form is the Shroom Mage, a corpse infested with fungus and draped in mystical robes. This stationary form attacks from the room's center, casting spore spells that cause mushrooms to sprout throughout the area.
We'd love to hear your thoughts on these elements and challenges. Be sure to join us on our Discord for regular updates and discussions.
Sneak Peak: Door of Denial
Before we conclude, we've got a sneak peek of a game mechanic we're working on - a key / lock mechanism with a quirky twist.
Imagine this: a door with an identity crisis. Yes, a door that denies its very essence. As you attempt to convince it of its reality, it dismisses your claims, refusing to budge.
The solution lies in the "Mirror Key," a unique item that reflects the door's true self back at it. Presenting this key to the door forces it to confront its identity, eventually reverting it back to its normal state and allowing passage. This isn't just a lock and key; it's a narrative woven into the gameplay.
Here's a glimpse into the early progress of this feature:
Please let us know what you think on our Discord or in the comments below.
Enjoyed this sneak peek? Don't forget to add Cultist Astronaut to your Wishlist on Steam. Your support means the world to us, and we look forward to hearing from you!
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