My Game Designs

Haven’t been doing much programming for a while, just a bit here and there. Much too busy working. Saving up money for next Sunday’s 13-hour plane trip to LA. Scared. Second ever plane trip, and first trip overseas.

Just a bit of theory

I normally like to post a picture with progress, but right now I thought I’d do a bit of theory (as I can’t code anything at the moment). I wanted the monster creatures to run and jump all on their own accord without relying on any other object or value, other than the player (when he is alive). I all the ways I could come up with don’t work in such an environment as this (not efficiently anyway), with no limit in the direction the monsters can go, so this morning I’ve come up with a brilliant plan to try an mix Unreal’s path node system with some A+ pathfinding (which I’ve tried an failed at before). At level creation, spawn node creators that walk across the level, creating nodes, which link to other nodes within a radius, and if there is no ground between linked nodes then that means that it’s a jump destination. Create monsters, and they update their path to the player every second, using the variation of A+… Hopefully this means that the monsters can quickly find a correct route to the player, no heading in the wrong direction or getting lost, and can jump when they need to. Hopefully it will also be faster for the computer, so each monster isn’t doing collisions for jumping and whatnot because the nodes have already done it. Dunno if this is gonna work…

Edit: after some pen and paper debugging, I didn’t realise just how to do this, and with constantly incrementing nodes being checked, I’m limiting the amount of nodes to check, instead of heading all the way to the player. Just head to the closest node after say 10 iterations.

Another Edit: This is stupid.

I haven’t done a lot recently, lots of being busy and Skyrim, and trying to do weird things with code. This video is an old idea put to new, with 6 days failing before I finally got it working.

I went through using nodes and for loops with crazy amounts of collision checking, as I wanted to try and do cool coding using an absolute minimum of variables (which was hectic), but I finally settled on a simpler use of directions and for loops with collisions. The whole code fits nicely on one page in the editor.

The monsters run across the level, checking through below them and above them (relative to the direction its heading in) and checks where it can move to at its current speed, and moves there. There seems to be a step delay between the sprite and the direction change. And they don’t jump properly, but it’s almost there. And for some reason, they get stuck when heading left… That keeps changing as I mess with gravity and directions…

The other problem is making the monsters want to head towards the player, without just aiming straight at him, and also jump towards him, and if something is blocking the path with the shortest distance, then it needs to head away from the player.

Sculptris, Blender, Photoshop. The first one is entirely done in Photoshop, I was trying to learn digital painting and colours, but made level pieces instead. I really like the scuplted painted look, but it is simply just too time consuming to do on a large scale. Probably just make some reusable pieces like they did with Oddworld: Abe’s Exoddus. BTW can you find the skull(s)?

Zombie City
Randomly generated city filled with zombies
I need to put in “combat” and “inventory” and its 99% finished.
It just needs lots of polish to not look so terrible.

I started off with wandering/drunk man to go through the grid placing streets, but that never worked. So I just made it iterate through each cell, if there is a street here, create a street a bit further on, until the grid is half full or about there.

This version has taken 24 hours straight, using bits and pieces from old versions that never worked right.

Now excuse me while I go play Dead Island again.

I thought these were so cool when I spotted them at the Antiques Warehouse, but alas, the date on the back says 2012… So not as retro as I hoped. It saved me $$$ from buying all six though.

Walking home, my wife and I were amazed at how clear the sky was, so we decided to get out the telescope and have a gander. First shot is a picture of the moon seen by the normal eye (iPhone camera) with a planet (I’m assuming, it’s too bright to be a star) and the second and third are using a telescope, and trying REAL HARD to line up the iPhone camera with the view finder lens. These two are the best shots. I just couldn’t hold still. Oh the image is mirrored obviously.

Saw Ender’s Game last night, and it was pretty awesome. I only read the first couple of comics of Ender’s Game, and the key points were in the movie as far as I saw. Still, excellent film.

I met and had a brief chat with a guy at work yesterday, and after I did some research, it turned out to be Chris Conte, a Senior Environment Artist at Sega Studios Australia, and Krome Studios. He was telling me that after Sega Studios closed down, he started another studio not far from where I work, called 5 Lives I thought about applying for an internship, but I don’t want to be the lame fanboy. I’m too busy working, saving up for a trip to Disneyland and HOLLYWOOD anyway.

Pixel art on the half hour trains to and from work today. Just realized I didn’t finish the other hand’s fire…