The visuals are still pretty cheap, but I'm starting to make real progress. For example, if you look at the green guy nearest the blue guy in the picture, you'll notice a little floating number over his head. That represents the damage the green guy just took in combat.
That means two things. First, and most obviously: I've decided to make it clear when people have taken damage by making little numbers float over their heads. That's a pretty common thing to do in a lot of games, so it should be pretty familiar to people.
And second, which is probably less clear from a simple screenshot: I have combat working! It's pretty primitive so far -- currently only basic melee attacks are supported -- but the underlying code structure is pretty easily extensible to much more complicated stuff like freezing enemies in place, boosting an ally's defense bonus, blocking enemies' powers, and so on.
This brings the game to a point where about 75% of the functionality is there to support a very early-access alpha release for a few friends to play with. By the end of the Christmas holidays, I should probably have that out.
Next on my list (at least for now) is making the models rotate to face the direction they're walking or attacking, because the fact that they never look the way they're supposed to be going is a little creepy (IMO). After that, I've got some cleanup to do still on saving and loading, and then... well, I guess it'll be whatever the heck I feel like working on at that point.
In the meantime, steady progress is being made on the artwork. We've got the basic design finalised for the kobolds, the brutes, and the angry broccoli, and we've got a pretty decent idea what we're doing for a ranged-attack monster (it's way cooler than what I'd originally had in mind) and the heroic fighter. I'll try to post some of those up sometime this week.
And at some point, I have to introduce some AI to this game...