Today I tried to figure out how attacks and other such effects are going to be modeled in GearHead: Caramel. If you’ve ever checked the GH1/GH2 source code, you’ll know that the old GearHead attack routine is a confusing mess of spaghetti that handles everything from beamswords to smoke bombs all in the same place. On the other hand, Dungeon Monkey Eternal has an elegant modular effects system where complex actions can be built up from simple components. Unfortunately, I don’t think the DME system is going to work in GHC without some major modification.
The two big problems that DME doesn’t have to deal with are moving areas of effect and chain reactions. In GearHead, an area of effect attack will sometimes deviate from its intended position. Also, effects often lead to additional effects: a body slam can result in the charging mecha taking damage, a mecha’s engine can explode causing damage to units around it, etc.
Here’s an example of the sort of complexity the GearHead system should be able to deal with: A Harpy launches three blast-radius missiles, each at a different spot, to take out a cluster of enemies. One of the missiles misses and deviates by a few tiles. Another of the missiles is shot down by an enemy’s anti-missile system, exploding several tiles short of its intended destination. One enemy is trapped in the blast radius of two missiles, taking damage from each. It suffers an engine explosion, further damaging its nearby allies.