This is my third 7DRL, and this year I’m hoping to kill two birds with one stone by exploring some alternate gameplay concepts I first explored in last year’s entry, Auto Fire. Auto Fire introduced car combat and exploration of a (poorly-rendered) cityscape and in the ensuing year has been extended to 3D, with richer generation, an overworld countryside, and a variety of superior UI and tools. None of which I’m going to use this week, see below.
This year, with Westbound and Down, I want to explore some of the “Convoy” style aspirations that I have yet to put into Auto Fire… Traveling from town to town and taking on cargo missions between outpost cities in a post-apocalyptic western U.S. Instead of exploration combat, the player must drive “blocker” for a convoy of trucks that is continually harassed by bandits and other road hazards. Upgrade your car and convoy vehicles, hire drivers, maintain your stock of ammo and fuel, and take on loads with higher risks for greater rewards.
The tough part of this year is that even though I’ve progressed quite a bit with Auto Fire’s codebase over the last year… in the spirit of making this a fresh 7-day effort, I’m working from the code from 2016’s 7DRL and seeing what I can construct within those confines. I hope to create an alternate movement model (forced directional movement, with most of the maneuvering involving lane-changes and acceleration/deceleration), a regional highway map, a cargo quest structure, some interfaces for cargo and hireling loadout, and hopefully some FTL-style dialogue encounters which could lead to bonus salvage or ambush. That’s a fair amount of stuff, but I’m hoping I’ve got enough to build from… and if I have to hack up my code a bit to try something, that’s okay, I can take any successes and work them into Auto Fire later, hopefully the “right way”. 🙂