About Volumes of Fun (twitter: @VolumesOfFun)

David and Matthew Williams working as 'Volumes of Fun'

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All done!

Posted by (twitter: @VolumesOfFun)
Tuesday, August 25th, 2015 5:34 pm

Well, we finished the game! We actually stopped a few hours early due to being on UK time but we’re both really pleased with what we have achieved in the time. Our first Ludum Dare has been a really great experience so we hope we can come back for more next time. Here’s the link to the game for those who want to play it:

And some screenshots for those who just want an impression:

Screen2 Screen1 Screen3 Screen4

We’re going to let the dust settle for a few days, and after that we’ll probably do a post on our main blog where we summarize our Ludum Dare experience and talk about what we have learned.

We’re into the last few hours!

Posted by (twitter: @VolumesOfFun)
Monday, August 24th, 2015 10:03 am

There hasn’t been much time for posting updates today as we’re into the final stretch. I’ve again spent the day on the art work (mostly the arena) and am really happy with the way it has come together. Matt has been working on many tasks such as health pickups, gameplay balancing and voxel destruction! The destruction is quite simple compared to our earlier demos (no debris) but is still a lot of fun.

Anyway, here are the latest images:

map4

10

We’ve only got a few hours left, as being on UK time means we can’t work right up to the deadline. But we’ve already got something fun and shipable.

Day 2 is nearly up!

Posted by (twitter: @VolumesOfFun)
Sunday, August 23rd, 2015 5:01 pm

We’ve made some good progress today and have a game which is somewhat playable. Matt has got a number of enemies chasing the player around the map, and the player can fight back by throwing fireballs to kill them. The aim is simply to survive as long as you can with enemies spawning more and more quickly.

On the art side I’ve continued building the arena and adding a variety of decorations. There’s now a castle in the top-left corner, which is where the game will start with you having just broken out of the keep. I also added a waterfall which you can walk underneath and some paths to generally guide the player around.

map3

We are using Cubiquity for UE4 for all the voxel stuff but the map is currently static. We’re hitting various issues with collision meshes and navigation meshes which we are working around with dirty hacks. We’d quite like to make the environment destructible but this will further complicate the collision and navigation problems, so we’re not sure if that will happen as there’s lots of other things to do!

Assets are now in engine :-)

Posted by (twitter: @VolumesOfFun)
Sunday, August 23rd, 2015 9:39 am

Matt’s a little busy with programming at the moment so he isn’t providing many updates, but he’s given me a couple of screenshots of the scene loaded in Unreal Engine 4. It’s looking pretty good!

map1

play1

We’ll probably need to do some tweaking of the lighting and colors as it’s a little bright at then moment, but it’s basically working and is already playable :-)

Almost halfway!

Posted by (twitter: @VolumesOfFun)
Sunday, August 23rd, 2015 6:41 am

We’re coming up on the 36 hour mark and overall I think we’ve made good progress. Our arena will be constructed of four quadrants to work around the size limitations in MagicaVoxel, and I’ve got the basic form of each of these constructed. I can’t show them joined up at the moment because this happens in-engine, but I have seen it working and expect Matt will post screenshots of that at some point. The current state of two of the quadrants is shown below:

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08

From an art point of view, I think I just need to spend the remaining time polishing the arena and decorating it to make it as interesting as possible. I may also work with Matt to get the in game shaders looking just as we want them.

Arena work

Posted by (twitter: @VolumesOfFun)
Saturday, August 22nd, 2015 3:58 pm

I’m now started replacing the blocked-out arena with a better one, and have also begun modelling a couple of trees and buildings to occupy it. We haven’t actually tested them in game though Matt is working towards this at the moment (battling problems with dynamically updating Unreal Engine 4 nav-meshes).

MagicaVoxel limits the size of volumes to 126³, but we duplicate the corner of the arena four times to make a larger environment.

04

05

06

Basic characters

Posted by (twitter: @VolumesOfFun)
Saturday, August 22nd, 2015 10:41 am

I’ve now made a couple of basic character models, again using MagicaVoxel. The monster will be controlled by the player, and will be chased around the arena and attacked by the peasants.

02

03

Prototyping the arena

Posted by (twitter: @VolumesOfFun)
Saturday, August 22nd, 2015 8:55 am

We’ve decided that Matt will do most of the programming while I do most of the art. I’m getting started by blocking-out the arena in MagicaVoxel, just so we can test our import pipeline.

01

At this point we are indeed planning to use voxels for the visual style, but it’s not yet clear if they will be involved in the gamepla.

Initial brainstorming

Posted by (twitter: @VolumesOfFun)
Saturday, August 22nd, 2015 6:29 am

Our first LudumDare has started with a brainstorming session to decide what we want to work on. The theme of ‘The monster is you’ is fairly open-ended, and we talked about playing one of the ghosts in a 3D Pacman, as well as using building mechanics for a voxel-based puzzle game. After some reflection we decided these are potentially too complicated, as one sixth of our time is almost up already!

Instead we’re going to build a game in Unreal Engine 4, starting from the Twin Stick Shooter template and simply seeing how far we can get. This gives us a starting point which is already playable and we’ll just swap out as much code and art as we can. It’s still risky though – I’ve never worked with Unreal myself, and Matt has played with the engine (via Cubiquity) but never made a game.

There’ll be no voxels/Cubiquity in the initial game, though we may add that in if we get time. First order of business is to get the character movement working as we want, add some enemies (heros, as we are the monster!), and some basic AI. For those that don’t know, the initial template looks like this:

0

Let’s see how far we can get!

First Ludum Dare

Posted by (twitter: @VolumesOfFun)
Friday, August 21st, 2015 5:35 pm

Hey Guys, I’m David and I will be working with my brother Matt on our first Ludum Dare. Wish us luck!

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