"Where Is Here: New Home"
This is my first game on Steam and second game I made after “Where Is Here?“.
I will soon make an online course for the people that want to find answers instead of reading many posts and watching videos and didn’t help.
Those online course will be mentioned with my game “Where Is Here: New Home”. Meaning what I have learned by myself in this game. I will share it with you. This game is published in the month September 2022.
There will be a link soon.
Project New Home. You will play as a teen girl that will explore the world with her drone Cassandra but encounter mysterious obstacles along the way. She has the power to open all the portals. On her adventure, you will find mystery creatures that will help you or hunt you down.
Store Page On Steam Since June 2022:
If you wishlist or bought my game, I thank you.
List During Development skills And Reviews From Players and Indiedev friends
- Added main menu and pause menu in the game (HUD/ UI) (devlog click here).
- Invisible walls with particle system if you are close by.
- Added animations to doors and creatures when they attack you.
- Learned performance in Unity version 2019 (devlog click here):
- Universal Render Pipeline (URP) added in the game because of Standard Render Pipeline was to slow to load the game with drawing cells and needed high FPS to evade lag during gameplay.
- LOD’s in all game objects.
- Added Occlusion culling.
- Enable GPU instancing to all materials for saving draw call.
- Lower textures and compression less on normal. Between 16 and 1048 max).
- Audio performance about stream and compressed in memory.
- Sound effect stay Native (WAV). WAV keeps better sounds.
- Game quality on low level and adjust how many lights will be visible in player’s range.
- Remove mesh render and replace with box, sphere or capsule collider. Less calculations meaning better stable performance.
- Settings in Terrain.
- Post-Porcessing with URP doesn’t take much performance as with Standard Render Pipeline
- Use Static option on game object for objects that doesn’t move.
- When using Enable Occlusion, don’t select static batching.
- Use only navigation and contribute IG statics
- When having a city with walls or dungeon with walls covered (example rooms):
- Use occluder and occludee Static and add a occlusion area box so it will work.
- Don’t use more than 5 textures in a scene because your FPS will go lower.
- game objects with UV on, 16 bits and compressed on high.
- Only moving game object with realtime light and others with mixed (baked an realtime light).
- Lightmap or light probes select on every game object to bake for scene
- Deactivate other dialogs when 1 is already activate. Check which dialog will fits on which path you take so multi dialogs will not happen in the same time.
- Tall grass removed and added small or medium highs.
- Added controls menu in the pause menu to let the player know which button to press and adding in the beginning of the game too.
- Used input manager to use 2 kinds of keyboards for players (devlog click here):
- Possible with WASD, left shift to run, left mouse click to interact with crosshair change when game object is active to interact and right mouse click to look back.
- Possible with ZQSD, left shift to run, left mouse click to interact with crosshair change when game object is active to interact and right mouse click to look back.
- Added objectives on the screen so the player won’t forget what to do.
- Added subtitle box (I designed in photoshop with spine animation) with text so the player can read while the dialog is working with voice.
- Add effect sounds for surroundings (example waterfall) and game objects moving) (devlog click here).
- Saving “Easy Save” used in every scene autosave and continue button available in main menu to continue the game (gameplay is between 2.30 – 3 and hours long).
- Added limited stamina bar (made design in photoshop).
- 24 scenes in total.
- Learned playmaker visual script in beginner – level intermediate.
- most tutorials didn’t help because out of date so I had to improvise a lot.
- Unity asset first- person didn’t work in my game because of the main menu and scripting from the asset. So I made a first-person with playmaker (devlog click here).
- Change animations by triggers.
- Added kill action and restarting game.
- Added voices in the game with audio tool (voice changer).
- Create animation with the bones for a specific game object in the game. Asset didn’t have animation, only bones.
- Try to adjust colors to with other 80 – 100 assets in the game to every scene. Using photoshop to change color texture (devlog click here).
- FPS is above 60.
- When I build my game without performance check, it was 60 GB big. After 2 months learning performance en URP, it’s now 2 GB.
- Bought a commercial music for my game and the players liked it a lot (devlog click here).
- To extend the game play, I added collected objects in the game to find it and achieve a steam achievement.
- Added Steam achievements in the game. Total of 52 achievements made by pictures in the game and drawings in photoshop. (color and gray color).
- Fixing error and bugs a lot in the game. The game works so that’s a good sign. I thank my friends that helped me find them and explained where and how. Thank you!
- Learned a lot with New Home game about Unity and Playmaker.
- Fixing the main menu to not press on 2 different things at the same time (devlog click here).
- Fixed to ignore with the world interaction of an object in front of you and while the inventory is already visible on your screen.
- Unity editor fixed lagging while making the game (devlog click here).
- No walking and running footsteps sounds in first-person game object.
- Didn’t make prefabs so the game took longer to make.
- All effect sounds, voices and music is based for headphones use. I didn’t know to make a general, VFX and voice sound globally to change higher or lower. Only players that have used a headphone while playing the game didn’t complain about this.
- Make the map bigger so the player can see from afar instead of being at the end of the map.
- No mini map on screen (because it doesn’t fit with the story).
- Some dialogs will prevent the player to move. Some players didn’t like that. I didn’t want the next dialog in a specific area to activate while the other dialog is still active.
- Without learning performance and URP, I build my game in March 2022 and the game wouldn’t load at the first time after downloadingand start the game at the main menu pressing on the start button. So that was a bad sign. I had to learn performance and URP and fix half of the game objects that became pink and change original shaders from game objects that didn’t have URP compatible. That took me 2 months to fix it. 60 GB disk space to 1.78 GB disk space.
- After my indiedev friends playtested the game and gave a bug report and opinion, the game was to short. 2 hours long. So I extended in 2 scenes some ideas that my indiedev friends and my mother has given to me. Now it’s between 2.30 and 3 hours long. It took a couple of months to fix it (devlog click here).
- Because not using prefabs and learned the program and fix bugs and errors. Fixing the performance issues too. It took me 1 year and 4 month to make this game. From May 2021 until September 2022.
- The marketing is a difficult part and I posted my game too late on Steam so I couldn’t collect more wishlisted to be on the popular wishlisted games on Steam. To be visible for more players (devlog click here).
- The launch wasn’t great but I had some small sells and very less refund so that’s a good sign. Even if the game isn’t sold so much. Seems the people who bought it are keeping the game. Itch.io or Steam (devlog click here).
- Did a lot of play test and started at the beginning and restart every time from the beginning when something is wrong at the end of the scene was stressful. Next time I will make an test scene so I can test it directly instead of playing over and over again for a small thing in the scene.
- Messing around with particle system to add in the game. Need to learn to start and stop without a timer.
- Visual scripting is messy and some of them are still unable to understand what I did. So next time I will try to organize and do a little more to the point actions in the FSM.
- 1 commercial song to use in the game was expensive for my budget (devlog click here).
- This is a 90s Sci-Fi thriller game style. It’s not for everyone.
- Kids under 12 years old shouldn’t play this game because it has skeletons and creepy stuff that maybe would scare them easily.
Why making this game?
When my first game was a small hit. I decided to make another game. My mother, my friends and in the indiedev community gave me a confidence boost and still supported me along the way. Thank you everybody. And this game was a level of beginner/ intermediate. I learned a lot in Unity version 2019 and Playmaker (visual scripting) and finished another game which is available on itch.io and Steam. And added Steam Achievements in the game too. It was not easy to make Where Is Here: New Home. I had sleepless nights and cried but at the end I smiled and feel confident again. I wanted to finish my game. The launch wasn’t great because of marketing issues but the people who bought it on itch.io or Steam are glad with it. It’s not a failure for me. And I still want to make another game.