Thursday, December 15, 2011

Hero Tower Defense Thursday: Day 18 - Native Skills

Go here to read Day 17 of Hero Tower Defense Thursday.

Today I want to go over Native Skills (NS). I apologize in advance for all the abbreviations I'm about to use. :)

So what are NS? NS are skills that you start with and require no points. Each character will have one Native Elemental Skill (NES) and one Native Class Skill (NCS). There are 5 different NES, one for each elemental. The NES you end up with is determined by the character's native element. They are kind of like a racial traits but instead of being based on the character's race they are based on the character's native element instead. The NCS on the other hand is the same for every character. You'll see why in a moment.

All NES are ranged direct damage skills, there's no projectile and not based on your weapon, it just instantly hits. They all have a some sort of duration based effect (e.g. DoT, Buff, etc) and are stackable up to 5 times, each time increasing it's effects and renewing the duration. It's also worth noting that these skills can be used on allies as well. Also, NES are unique in that they are able to generate elemental charges around your character. These charges can be used various ways which I'll explain later.

Here's a list of the NES and how they are currently set up:

Fire: Sets your target on fire causing it to take continuous damage and increasing it's Fire Attunement

Water: Douses your target with water causing it to be continuously healed and increasing it's Water Attunement

Nature: Binds your target with nature causing it to be immobile for a moment then continuously healed as well as increasing it's Nature Attunement

Light: Empowers your target with light increasing it's Physical and Magical Power as well as increasing it's Light Attunement

Shadow: Inflicts your target with shadow decreasing it's Physical and Magical Defense as well as increasing it's Shadow Attunement

As a reminder, attunements are a unit's resistance and effectiveness with each elemental's skills.

Now for the charges. For every NES use that character will receive a charge of that elemental type. So since the NES is linked to your native element it means that characater can only produce that type of charge. Every character can hold up to 5 charges each charge increases the characters attunement corresponding to the type of charge. So if it's a fire charge, it'll increase your fire attunement, etc. The charges are consumed by Finisher skills (FS). These skills require at least one charge but will consume whatever charges you currently have stored. Each charge will increase the FS power to varying degrees depending on the type of the FS and the type of the charges consumed. So for example, if you have 5 fire charges and you use a fire FS it's power will be boosted a lot. If you have 5 water charges and you use a fire FS you won't get much of a boost at all because water counters fire.

There's one FS with the exception to this rule and that's the NCS all classes start out with that I mentioned earlier. The NCS is a FS that lets you transfer whatever charges you have available to another unit. So now you can have a character with one native element holding the charges of another element, it just requires some team work. This also means that you can have a mix of charge types on a character since you can hold up to 5 charges.

This brings up one other point. Say you do a charge transfer and the receiving target goes over the limit of charges they can hold, or perhaps they already are full and you transfer for to them, what happens? Well, first it will check to see if there's any charge spots available and fill those then whatever are left will do a type check against the other elemental charges and either replace them or get countered. Here's a couple simple examples:

1. You transfer 5 water charges to a character with 5 fire charges - all the fire charges get replaced by the water charges. So the target ends up with all water charges.

2. You transfer 5 water charges to a character with 2 fire charges and 2 shadow charges - one water charge gets added, the two fire charges are replaced by two water charges while the 2 shadow charges remain because shadow counters water. So the target ends up with 3 water charges and 2 shadow charges.

I sounds more complicated than it actually is but these NS are meant to be important and used strategically and not just as a "Click skill, do damage" type of move. At the very beginning you'll be using them constantly just because you won't have many other moves to choose from but their importance will remain high throughout the game. This also allows for some interesting stuff to do with strategies for general attacks, boss encounters, level objectives, etc so expect to see some fun things going on in the future.

Well that was a bit long but fun to write! On a side note we're all working hard to have as much ready for the upcoming release as possible. However, I've said it before and I'll say it again just to keep everyone on the same page. This release is basically a prototype of what we have physically developed so far. Design and concept is the majority of what we've been doing so far and so we've only just begun to start physically developing the game into something. But we promised to give you guys something as soon as possible and we want to hear your feedback every step of the way so we're showing you what's essentially a just-started, pre-alpha, v0.0001, right-out-of-the-gates release. So just keep that in mind please. :D

Kevin also has a new poll up on his
blog, KXN @ HTD for choosing Male Hairstyles so head over there and be sure to cast your vote!

As always, let us hear what you have to say in the comments and thanks!



  1. plz be in top 5...

    anyway, i like how the game is turning out! and Dan, are you nearly finished with HTD v1.0?(i mean its the end of the year :D)

    i am Pokeman, but in HTD thursdays, i am Heroman :)

  2. 3rd PLLLZZ!!!!-still hoping for an x-mas release


  3. v.0000001 will release this year :) just don't expect a completed game :D

  4. I'm 1st to say 1st XD

  5. 5th and thanks for the last post Sam cant wait for v.0000001

  6. Awesome concept. Nature really seems like a double-edged sword though. Will the healing rate be fast enough that it pretty much negates all damage done on the target?

    I like how the charge concept works, especially watching charges override each other. Not terribly complicated at all, really.

  7. I was wondering 1 thing, have you got a officail release date yet or just "This year sometime".

  8. How on earth would you program this you'll have to go through every possibility or would you ???

  9. Where is ninja ja?

  10. NES=Nintendo Entertainment System

  11. is it coming out on Christmas like a presnt

  12. Wow nice system, I'm afraid it gets confusing with too much choices (on the long road) but as you said its probably harder spoken that in real play. And to be fair its easier to adjust stuff that make it from scratch ;)

    For the pre-proto-aplpha will there be loot or something we can look after even in this stage?

    And will there be any reset after the first versions? Or any stuff we get now will remain for the rest (I know there won't be any good items for later but just to know if there is a point on farming some more rare items if there are any in the previous versions ;) )

  13. i hope in version v.0000001 there will be other human other then the player,such as an advisor or quest person

  14. What do you mean water heals people? How does that make sense? You heal your enemies? Im confused, I must have read it wrong... Same with Nature.. Im VERY confused and I must have read it wrong :/

  15. @Sam or Dan, will it really be v.0000001 or are you just over-exaggerating? its really v0.1 or v1.0, right?

    and guess what? i am also in the top 2 and the top 30 commentors! what now?! HA!

  16. I never got an actual reply but i still want to know, could y'all make a guild/group/clan system or something, so that me and my friends could play together or me and my brothers, and make like "instances" or other zones were monsters are harder and you need more people to do, maybe even just certain "quest" that are harder to do, that require 2-3? that would be awesome, let me know what you think!

  17. Hi again,long time no see,
    I don't actully understand but i probally will when it's up and running.
    I'm really sad about the HTD symbol: it shows the elements,except it hides light (the best one) and nature(probally the 2nd best) so i'm really sad about it PLEASE do something about it.

  18. @KingOfTheKais maybe we are supposed to use these spells on allies.
    @Aoirc it will be just v0.1,but maybe it can appear later
    This one is a question from me:will there be Mark hunts like in FinalFantasyXII? like,you accept to hunt a beast,the NPC who requested it tells you what route(s) it might appear,and in those route(s) it can appear and drop rare loot when defeated,or the NPC gives you a rare item.I know,I know,"it is v0.1",but i just wanted to know if you could add it later like the shiny voltorb quest or the mystery gift in PTD.

  19. @Heroman - Thanks! Like Sam (and the post :P) said we'll have a release coming up here before the end the year but it's a very very early release and more like prototype.

    @DTAkillR - :D

    @Anon 3:13 AM - True, congrats! hah

    @Nicholas Smith - /wave

    @Chris Tan - Glad you like the idea! :)

    The healing rate won't be that strong but keep mind it's other effects, like that it immobilizes the target for a moment, that's pretty strong. Also remember these skills can be used on your other characters too.

    @Anon 4:38 AM - This year. We'll probably take the week between Christmas and New Year's off.. and we'll be busy on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day.. so that leaves... :P

    @Anon 10:34 AM - That's something Sam gets to figure out but it shouldn't be too bad really, it's just doing some checks.

    @Anon 11:52 AM - On my computer, slowly growing. There aren't any cobwebs in the folder but it's just taking some time since I'm quite busy with various things.

    @TVSmassher66 - I was waiting for someone to point out the NES abbreviation lol.. mmm capri sun

    @Anon 3:33 PM - Well it is free, so it could be considered a type of gift sure :)

    @Gon - Yeah, we'll see how it goes. Tweaking is always an option so not worried about that. :)

    There likely won't be any loot at this point sorry. But it'll be getting updated with stuff regularly so it won't be far behind.

    There aren't any profiles for HTD yet so anything you do in this version is just sort of playing what's there rather than starting the game. If that makes sense.

    @Rashid - There will be someone you have to protect so I guess that qualifies as a quest person.

    @KingOfTheKais - I think you just missed the part about being able to use the native skills on your allies as well. Also remember the other effects of the skills, they are meant to be used strategically and not just continuously fired off a the nearest enemy. It'll make more sense when you are able to play around with them in the game.

    @Heroman - It's a really really early version of the game. Like literally the first form of it outside the concept stage. It's important to remember this is NOT how games are typically released because there's so little to see at first. But this is how we like doing it and it keeps you all involved, so that's why I'm stressing the point of it being such a early version.

    @Aoirc - Yes, we're starting out as just single player for now since it's easier but as we develop it we're keeping multiplayer in mind. In other words it will eventually act like a mmorpg where you could essentially co-op the entire time with friends as a group. Raids and things are all in the future for HTD, it'll just take awhile to get there. :)

    @lux - It should make more sense when you get to try them yourself.

    Lol, yeah that's been mentioned before. Don't worry the logo is still a WIP, Kevin has all sorts of ideas for it and everything that you guys mention gets taken into consideration.

    @Anon 11:05 AM - Sounds like a cool idea. I definitely enjoy the "Go find defeat X monster" type quests so we'll certianly have some I'm sure. Down the road I'll be asking for more ideas from you guys, including quest ideas like this, so be sure to mention it then as well! :)

  20. IPHONE!!!
    (at least by march)

  21. @Dan - So this/these first version(s) will work like a demo not related to the game, I mean, nothing you do or do not do will influence the actual future game, is it?

    Any release date already? =D

  22. hey dan you answer every post on here unlike a SAM i know.just joking but it is true

  23. @Anon 7:52 PM - Why by March?

    @Gon - It's the first working version of the game. Like a demo, yes, progress won't be saved because we don't have profiles set up yet. It's very minimal because it's very early in development. We're letting you in at the developer level, not like the alpha level where there's a lot of stuff already done.

    Very soon :D

    @The T man - Lol, that's because there are like hundreds more PTD comments than there are HTD comments :P

    If HTD eventually gets that many I can't promise I'll be able to answer every comment either but I'll do my best. When you start getting that many comments you have to make a choice: Do I answer all these comments or do I work on the game.

    A good mix is usually the best option, however you can be sure that all the comments definitely get read by us because we want to hear what you have to say. It's just time consuming to respond to all of them. :)

  24. @Dan (I am Anon 7:52)
    I just think that would be enough time to get something out that will have enough. Earlier is good too but if you think i am crazy and that's not enough time then just ignore me. I just want this game to be awesome.

  25. A couple more hours!

  26. @Anon 11:15 PM - Lol, oh. We'll see, it's a bit difficult to plan that far ahead with the way we are doing things. I agree though, I want it to be awesome too, and it shall be!

    @Anon 11:15 PM - Indeed!

    @Anon 11:20 PM - HI!

  27. It's pretty fun :D Is there any way to use the fire charges atm?