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Where do I go from here?

Posted by
Sunday, April 19th, 2015 8:31 pm

airphonebooth

Well… despite having virtually no major interruptions this time around, I managed to let things get out of hand again. I say that like I’m upset, but frankly, I had a LOT of fun with this, and learned a lot of cool things with Unity. This is actually the first attempt I’ve made at doing an LD with Unity and I have to say it went really well all things considered.

allabouttheangle

It’s kind of silly how attached I’ll get to characters sometimes… I actually feel serious guilt just for never actually providing the world where these characters can live out their stories.

Tooey

I think it mostly has to do with that first convincing expression on a character’s face that really gets across what you’re aiming for. This is Dr. Tooey. He is… completely out of his mind… and head-over-heels in love with a collapsed star that he’s got in that little container there.

beholdthecity

I spent probably 5-6 hours just building 1 level here. Usually I’d be spending 5-6 hours building something to generate a level for me. I was happy with the results though.

bigcityshot

Maybe part of my problem is that I get wrapped up in the atmosphere of it and lose focus on actually making it DO something.

comeonin

Oh, but it DOES :) In case anyone hasn’t picked up on it already, I was hoping to achieve a little Katamari Damacy-ness with the “gobble up bigger and bigger objects”. I was amazed just how good plain, vertex-colored meshes looked in Unity with the “Standard” lighting.

tables

I definitely achieved the chaos I wanted… but that chair to the side of him definitely SHOULD be getting sucked directly into the vortex and it’s not.

TREES!

 

Oh god, Tree Particles.

I guess this is somewhat of a peri-mortem post. Still got another 24 hours or so to submit this, and I probably still will, but I am incredibly burnt out, and still have the work week ahead of me. Hoping to maybe use this as an excuse to actually get in the habit of doing some collaborative game dev after work on occasion again.

Good night everyone! It’s been fun!

It’s 3:22 AM I must be Ludum Dare-ing

Posted by
Saturday, April 18th, 2015 2:30 am

 

 

areyoucheckingoutmyassets

End of night one here for me. Been focusing on pumping out some assets rather than programming. Hoping I’ll have enough time to implement what I’m planning… if all goes well it shouldn’t actually be that much code.

eh

 

Surprised how decent this looks in Unity with basically just a vertex-colored shader. The mesh is kind of awful, but I’m blaming lack of sleep at this point, so I’m going to make that happen for now. Maybe tomorrow I can lure in help from unsuspecting co-workers with pretty screenshots…

For the first time it’s a WE’RE In

Posted by
Friday, April 17th, 2015 10:31 pm

Didn’t post this yet, so here’s the obligatory list. Going co-op this time around with a fellow dev from work Jeff, possibly wrangling some music in from NeonLare, depending on whether or not I can enlist other co-workers help over the weekend.

Tools I’ll be using:

  • Unity
  • Blender
  • ASEprite
  • Gimp (not entirely likely at this point)
  • Audacity (if we get to / I’m involved in sound)

We’ve got what I think is a solid idea. Let’s see if we can make it happen! Good luck to everyone else out there!

I Should Probably Be Finishing My Game…

Posted by
Sunday, April 27th, 2014 12:20 pm
rememberlemmings

Remember Lemmings?

All Around the Alien Queen

Posted by
Sunday, April 27th, 2014 8:56 am
Pop goes the egg sac

Pop goes the egg sac

Time for a Nap!

Posted by
Saturday, April 26th, 2014 1:31 pm
Things are quiet now... but wait till those guys can shoot.

Things are quiet now… but wait till those guys can shoot.

 

So… I wasted way more time than I’d have liked getting the physics working how I wanted for this, but I guess it’s worth it. As always, spent a lot of time animating these guys with sin/cos/abs. That’s always my favorite part of this…. and I always talk about it, and post pictures… but this is the first time I actually did one of these:

 

We can fly too, asshole.

We can fly too, asshole.

Compo, Jam, Who knows

Posted by
Friday, April 25th, 2014 2:41 pm

One thing is for certain… I’m in.

Depending on how things go over the next few hours I may or may not be joining up with some colleagues to do this jam-style. Anyways, here we go:

PLAN A:

  • Unity 3d
  • Blender
  • Notepad++ (Monodevelop can kiss my ass)

PLAN B:

  • GameMaker Studio

Likely being used in either case, assuming I get to these things:

  • AESprite
  • BFXR
  • LMMS

And… assuming I’m using Unity… I may try to sneak my tile system in there. This is very similar to what I’d put together for my “Coggoid” engine a while back, just implemented in Unity now. Frankly I don’t see how people even get started on making some of the worlds they do without something like this, but more power to them.

As always, best of luck to all the participants. Wasn’t really feeling any of the themes in particular in the final round, and I’m pretty sure I’ll hate whatever it is… but that’s no reason to not make something awesome anyways. May the entries that get the highest scores win!

That Tile/Voxel Thing I Do

That Tile/Voxel Thing I Do

Hamlet – Post Mortem

Posted by
Tuesday, December 17th, 2013 3:53 pm

This will be my first post mortem… post… so anyways, here goes!

edit: This is for Hamlet btw…

The Good

  • Sprites! Always a fun part of game dev for me. Got a few basic techniques down that I tend to stick to. This tends to make the pixel art portion of these go pretty quick for me. I’m also pretty much in love with ASEprite. I seem to get a lot of great comments about my pixel art. I hardly consider myself an “artist”… I’m just usually pretty good at emulating other work. If I can recommend anything to a fledgling pixel artist… LESS shades of color. I try to use around 3 in most cases. Dithering those colors generally makes for a nicer “pixel” look.
  • spriteediting

    Seriously. Piece of cake.

     

  • Juicing. I am first and foremost a programmer. Did I draw my sprites to look the way they do because I just love Fisher Price? No. I did it because abs(sin()) makes it REALLY easy to animate their movement. Cover with lerp() and heat to 350… and voila! A deliciously animated  scene, with about 3 real frames of “animation” (the two states of the mouth being open, and the blinking eyes)
  • Storyline. Ok, it was a pretty shameless rip-off, but the “storyline” ultimately was more about you playing the role OF Hamlet in a play. Regardless… it definitely cut out a lot of the “what do I do next?” Despite it all, I had way too much fun with the other stuff and only really made it to the end of a VERY summarized Act 1.
  • Scripting. If this was intended as a pun, it’s probably more of a reality than a play on words. Here you can see the script that executes to begin Act1Scene1 (which was actually just a timeline in GameMaker). I had objects created for each of the characters… all parented to a “proto_actor” object. Basically, for each one of them, all I did was override the index of their sprite, and maybe adjust their speed and mouth/arm height slightly. I wrapped a lot of my common commands into their own scripts. The result was something that looked less like a “GameMaker script” and more like a script for a play:

[stextbox id=”alert”]

enter_left(Barnardo);
with(Barnardo) {
goto_stage(64,12);
holdprop(instance_create(x,y,Pike));
}

enter_left(Francisco);
with(Francisco) {
goto_stage(108,12);
holdprop(instance_create(x,y,Pike));
}

ninja_a = enter_left(StageNinja);
instance_create(ninja_a.x + 60,room_height-40,Elsinore);
with(ninja_a) {
grab_setpiece(Elsinore);
goto_stage(16,4);
}

ninja_b = enter_right(StageNinja);
with(ninja_b) {
holdprop(instance_create(x,y,MoonPole));
goto_stage(300,8);
}
ninja_c = enter_right(StageNinja);
with(ninja_c) {
holdprop(instance_create(x,y,StarPole));
goto_stage(280,8);
}

enter_right(HamletGhost);
showtitle(“Act 1 Scene 1”);

[/stextbox]

The Bad

  • Dangly Stars and Moon. If any of you have actually completed it to the end, you may see one of the “Stage Ninjas” complaining about the moon-on-a-stick not actually dangling off the stick. I tried to use the physics system to handle this, but it ended up not really being worth the trouble.
  • Sounds. I did actually make a quick little sound in BFXR for the sound of the actors hopping across the stage. I don’t know if it was my math for judging when to play the sound or what, but it ended up with an awful grinding noise. This was quickly abandoned. Probably better in the end considering I’d have a lot more sounds to make and get added in that I really didn’t have time for anyways. Music? Forget about it.
  • Balancing difficulty. This is something I rarely end up spending the time to tune like I want to. I guess it’s probably pretty common for an LD48 format, but pretty much all my entries are easily beaten once you “figure out the trick”. As I was play testing this I had a really hard time balancing punishment for not doing what you’re supposed to with still allowing you to get away with enough antics to still make it fun. The end result still really isn’t there, but then again, I had a lot more planned as far as just HOW bad things were going to get on stage.
  • That damn spotlight. One of the features I wanted to add the most, just to emphasize the silly little laments… and I can’t seem to do modulative blending right in GameMaker. Sigh. To add injury to insult, it breaks the gameplay pretty bad on some systems that show it as fully opaque.

The Ugly

  • 9:40 PM EST – Totally amped up and ready to go for LD28… from outside, a crash. Our horse has accidentally put her hoof through the wall of our barn while rolling in her stall. Just my luck. I guess it WAS Friday 13th. Wasn’t till around 10:30 that I actually sat down and got started with even thinking about what to do. Horse is better now at least, and ultimately, it wasn’t that much time wasted in the grand scheme of things.
  • Work. These past few weeks have been absolute hell with the amount of stuff I’ve had on my plate at work. At least I enjoy what I do and work with really nice people. I really needed this compo. You wouldn’t think that 48 hours of stressful work would be such a relief from… other stressful work, but it definitely was :)

Honestly… the comments I’ve gotten so far inspired me to actually do a post mortem for once. A big thank you to everyone who played it, whether or not you got anywhere with it.  I’m considering the possibility of actually finishing it, probably with the help of NeonLare if I do. He’s a fantastic composer and artist.

Anyways, I think that’s a wrap… got a lot more games to try out, I probably should get to that. Good luck to everyone else out there! Seeing a lot of cool stuff as usual, see you all again in April!

Ham-let... get it? sigh... good night folks...

Ham-let… get it? sigh… good night folks…

To LD or not to LD

Posted by
Sunday, December 15th, 2013 12:28 am

Well, wrapping up Night 2 here. Got snowed in, but that kind of worked in my favor since… I couldn’t leave to do anything else. Game is coming along absolutely great. I kind of get the feeling I’m going to obsess over all the cute little details rather than actually get it done, though I did actually put together a quick title screen and “BEGIN” button. (A big step for me)

I’m a total irrational snob when it comes to themes. When I saw this one announced, I immediately figured everyone had voted for it just to “take the easy way out”… but I’m sort of happy about the way things turned out. My take on the theme comes from doing a shameless Google Image search of the theme and seeing several things about “You only get one chance to make a good impression”. I sort of took that and ran with it as “You only get one chance to be remembered… make it count”.

As usual… I turned this into what’s probably a too-ambitious plan:

Get your lament on.

Get your lament on.

You are Hamlet…. or at least you’re some guy playing Hamlet in the same-titled Shakespearian play. Haven’t actually added the audience yet, but the basic idea here is: This is your big break. You can make it the performance of a lifetime, or you can… at least ensure that no one will ever forget it. This is the opening scene… and if anyone cares to recall… Hamlet doesn’t actually appear in this scene… unless of course he decides to wander on stage and make an ass of himself. That little red circle underneath him it basically letting you know that you’re NOT supposed to be on stage right now, and the show can’t really go on with you there. I’m loving the system I’ve got going for this so far. All the other actors actually stop what they’re doing, and stand there watching you like, “WHAT ARE YOU DOING!?!” When you walk back off stage, they continue on, awkwardly.

Hmm... is this a good time to jump for joy? Or should I cry some more?

Hmm… is this a good time to jump for joy? Or should I cry some more?

I actually just got the “action” system added in…. so I can finally actually turn this into more of a real “game”. In addition to the dialog sort of actions, I’m hoping to add a number of contextual actions based on different objects in each scene. It’s downright adorable so far… hoping to add a generous helping of gratuitous violence before submitting.

For now… time to rest.

 

I hope I’m in

Posted by
Thursday, December 12th, 2013 7:20 pm

Been an unbelievably busy past couple weeks at work… and still a lot to do… so I’ll probably be working as fast as I can on work… to be sure that I can… work as far as I can on not work… over the weekend.

Anyways, my plans are my usual gambit:

  • GameMaker Studio
  • SFXR/Audacity
  • ASEprite
  • Musagi (Rarely ever get this far anyways)
  • If for some reason I come up with something I feel I can actually manage and is worth the jump… I may take a swing at using Unity for something 3D

Everyone seems to be doing one of these nowadays… here’s a shot from my attempt at it a few days ago…

Yes, those ARE shamelessly ripped Minecraft textures.

I Suddenly Have Great Respect for Potatoes

Posted by
Saturday, April 27th, 2013 1:43 am
Hubu and Floot

Muh tail is broked!

 

4:30 AM, I’m calling it a night, even though it’s technically a morning. More than a little disappointed at the theme. I’ll leave it at that. Spent probably an hour and a half trying to come up with something that I felt was worth pursuing and still somewhat fit the theme. One of the creatures from my endless supply of game plans happened to be extremely “minimal” in design. So… I decided to create a game based around taking care of them in a sort of virtual-pet way. Realized very quickly that I’d be doing a LOT of sprite work if I was going to do all the animations for different things. (Something I’m awful at) Instead, I started breaking these guys up into pieces and animating them programmatically. Still a lot I’d like to do with the animation, but I think I’m at a good spot to take a break now and get some sleep. For anyone who cares, this is a “Hubu”, and the rather chopped up thing sticking out of it’s shoulder is a tail, which they use to manipulate things, although not very effectively. They are essentially inspired by baby rabbits and probably Totoros.

I am all kinds of In

Posted by
Tuesday, April 23rd, 2013 5:48 pm

You had it coming you over-indulgent pixel bastard.

 

Had a fun time with the warm up. Probably spent a lot more time on it than I should have, considering that, true to form, I didn’t really “finish” it. In any case, got some experience using Game Maker Studio, which is good, considering I plan to use it this weekend. Among other things:

  • Game Maker Studio – All that funky stuff it does
  • ASEPRITE – Sprite editing
  • SFXR/Audacity – Sound generation / manipulation (assuming I get this far)
  • LMMS – Music (likewise)

Depending on the theme and probably just how I’m feeling at the time, I may be teaming up with NeonLare and doing this Jam style. He has a better track record for actually getting things finished, and he pretty much rocks at everything I suck at, so that works well. I don’t know what all this potato business is about, but believe it or not, of the food items from my warm up game is a baked potato.

Good luck everybody, lot of good themes out there…. don’t disappoint!

Obligatory “I’m In”

Posted by
Friday, December 14th, 2012 4:40 pm

Ditto for my April (?) entry… though from my new house with significantly less distractions this time around. Also armed with a plethora of energy drinks should the need arise. Nothing special, just making this “official”.

All devved out, night 2

Posted by
Sunday, April 22nd, 2012 12:57 am

You aren't fooling anyone, they can smell your turnips.

 

Finally got some sort of adversary in here now other than time rotting your vegetables. This will be my 2nd Ludum Dare where pigs are some sort of an enemy…. and I like pigs. Hmm.

24 Hour Report-In

Posted by
Saturday, April 21st, 2012 6:04 pm

1 Day down, 1 to go. Just about an hour ago I had an epiphany for how to up the cute factor of this. Now instead of carrying your produce in the typical magic invisible “inventory”, you’ve got everything all stacked up, with the currently selected item at the bottom, just waiting to be used ;). This should make the next game mechanic I have planned make a little more sense visually. Just got items showing up in the shop, can’t actually buy them yet, but you now automatically sell all the produce you bring in. Made some cheesy little night and day sort of system by moving a gradient up and down. Looks pretty sweet though. Anyways, got errands to run. Seeing a lot of stuff a lot more awesome than mine on here, great job everyone!

Day 1: By the Book, Or the Keynotes Anyways…

Posted by
Friday, April 20th, 2012 11:41 pm

So far so good with doing this the “recommended way”. I started off with a bunch of boxes and just made them behave the way I wanted. I started drawing some sprites now and am happy with the way this is turning out. I was a bit disappointed with the theme, but I’m making it work. Plenty of work still ahead of me, but I think I got a pretty good amount knocked out already. I’m doing a chronolapse from my laptop, and for the first time also have a webcam, which should be interesting to watch afterwards ;). I’m looking forward to actually playing and judging other entries this year because for once I may actually be submitting something!

 

If you’re reading this post…. GO YOU!!!

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