Since the very beginning of development for Otto and the Ancient Worlds, I have fantasized what the Greek stage would look like countless times! Three years ago I started writing down the first concept ideas and very quickly came to the conclusion that Medusa needs to be in the game. I grew up watching Clash of the Titans (1981), so I always pictured Medusa using a bow and arrow while turning warriors into stone with her terrible gaze! Otto gets a unique outfit after defeating a boss which gives him a special ability, so Medusa would give Otto the ability to turn people into stone!
For one brief moment we thought the game should be Greek Mythology only. This would simplify the theme and allow us to reuse certain tiles and sprites… but to hell with that we said! The game has to be more than just one Mythology! Otto is a professor of archaeology who collects artifacts from all different kinds of cultures with his colleague Persephone. The game isn’t just about platforming, it dives deep into the history of the mythology/folklore of the stage. You will be able to find hidden NPC’s that tell you about the story the current stage is based on. In the Greek Stage, one of the hidden NPC’s is Perseus who plays a major role in the Medusa mythology. When you find Perseus in the stage, he will tell you how he was tricked by Polydectes into getting him any gift he desired… Medusa’s head! I won’t tell you who the other NPC’s are because spoilers!
The flow of the stage is very much inspired by Clash of the Titans. At first I thought the stage could start with Otto on Charon’s boat(a ferryman who carries the souls of the dead across the rivers Styx and Acheron which divides the world of the living from the world of the dead), but this was scratched because the Norse Mythology stage has a boat stage mechanic just like it. So instead Otto starts the stage with Charon to his left to indicate he just took Otto across the water, and a cave to his right where the adventure begins.
So I don’t want to spoil much more about the stage or any of the enemies, but you will eventually make your way to Medusa’s Lair. As you can see from the blog post thumbnail image, this lair is all about dat green bb. At first I imagined the area to be dimly lit with gold and red columns, but we thought it’d be a great idea to slightly resemble the snake man stage in Mega Man 3 on NES.
Next couple posts will focus on programming certain game mechanics in Game Maker Studio 2. Happy Fourth of July, watch out for snakes!