Quantum Shift GB Dev Log #1

Just over a week ago, I finally decided to try out GB Studio myself, after making video reviews for many games made using the engine I feel like I’ve got a good understanding of what it’s capable of, and what kind of things make a good or bad game in the engine. 

For my first GB Studio project, I decided to recreate and finish off a game I made back in 2014 in RPG Maker XP called Quantum Shift 

(You can play the original RPG Maker version here – https://retrobreak.itch.io/quantum-shift)

As I don’t have a lot of free time to make games, what with my job and making weekly YouTube videos taking up the majority of my time. I decided to do something unheard of for me… Wake up early! So over the past week I’ve been trying to get up around an hour early before work and dedicate that time to working on my game! I found it’s really good for being productive because I know I’ve got a hard deadline of just one hour to make some progress!

Speaking of progress, here’s where I’m at so far:

As you can see, the starting area, as well as the inside of the house are already in place. The tile sets and sprites are all placeholders at the moment. I’m trying to figure out how it all works first, but from what I’ve tried so far, it seems like everything I did in RPG Maker XP should be able to be translated down onto the gameboy relatively easily. 

There were a few things I was struggling to figure out, like how to interact with the environment, for example, triggers only activate when you walk over them, not when you interact. (as far as I could tell anyway…) So I found a work around and decided to try using an invisible actor sprite, which you can interact with by pressing A. So now rather than having to make separate actor versions of all the interactive sprites, I can instead just use a blank actor and change its location and script within the scene. I made it visible in the editor so I know where the interactive parts of the map are, but will swap tot he invisible actor for the final game. 

I also had the idea of making any interactive objects sparkle slightly before you’ve interacted with them for the first time so the player knows what they can and can’t interact with, which will stop people having to walk around everywhere blindly pressing the A button and hoping for an interaction. It’s just an idea for now but maybe I’ll try implementing something like that soon and see how it works! 

Another thing I struggled with at first was the tile sets, and how to get them into the scene. The gameboy has a very limited amount of memory, and a small screen size, so the original sprites and assets used in RPG maker wouldn’t work. I did try to shrink them down butt he result wasn’t great….

Overall though, I’m happy with the process so far, and seem to have picked the engine up early easily! I’m sure there’ll be something I get stuck at later on, but for now I look forward to waking up early each morning and chipping away at what will hopefully become a great time travel adventure game for the system! 

I hope you all look forward to playing it! Stay tuned for more updates soon!  

Here’s some comparisons with the two games so you can see how closely I’m able to get GB studio to match RPG Maker:

Thanks for reading, 

Nick (RetroBreak)

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