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Sirocco
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PostPosted: Sat Sep 22, 2012 2:17 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote



Not much going on today. Chores, mostly. Must. Kick. Ass. Tomorrow.
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mikedoty
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PostPosted: Sat Sep 22, 2012 2:40 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Dang, they ate whitey up pretty darned fast at the end there. Poor guy!

I like the crispness of the transition to the game over screen. Do you just instantly blast the screen into full-on white and then fade the white down into the game over, or do you ramp the white in incrementally (even if it's a very high increment)?
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Sirocco
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PostPosted: Sat Sep 22, 2012 8:51 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:

Do you just instantly blast the screen into full-on white and then fade the white down into the game over, or do you ramp the white in incrementally (even if it's a very high increment)?


The former. I set the screen tint to almost pure white and let it die off over ~1 second. It's a nice, cheap effect that really looks a lot better than it should. It's also great for shocks and explosions. There's also a secondary effect that makes the screen buffer shake for ~ 1/2 a second. I can't pick up sound just yet, but there's a heavy, metallic 'stamp' sound, like the game over is being blasted onto the screen.
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Jonge
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PostPosted: Sun Sep 23, 2012 12:09 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks for sharing your glow code, I'll post back when I get the time to sit down and make some working code(in FreeBASIC)

How do you know the health status of the team in your game?
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Sirocco
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PostPosted: Sun Sep 23, 2012 6:50 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

The character's glow will fade, and once you reach "oh crap I'm almost dead" level something else will happen, which I haven't decided on yet. I think the player will flash red or something.
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mikedoty
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PostPosted: Sun Sep 23, 2012 7:30 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Maybe you could do something to the bullets themselves, too, since they'll be flooding the screen all the time. If a character has < 20% health, then half of the bullets they shoot out are in black and white, something like that.
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Sirocco
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PostPosted: Sun Sep 23, 2012 6:45 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

mikedoty wrote:
Maybe you could do something to the bullets themselves, too, since they'll be flooding the screen all the time. If a character has < 20% health, then half of the bullets they shoot out are in black and white, something like that.


That... is a pretty fine idea, actually. I think I'll work with that idea tomorrow. Much appreciated!

I didn't get much done this weekend. I felt fine and the weather was tolerable, so I got out and hung with some friends, socialized, etc. I find it easier to work on this during the week since I'm already all blah from the day job, it's nice to come home to something cool.

I also realized my framework is getting so expansive I'm going to have to write a reference guide for it. I keep forgetting I have helper routines and sometimes end up duplicating functionality :)
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Sirocco
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PostPosted: Mon Sep 24, 2012 5:34 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote



Hoo boy, this is going to take a while. I knew I was biting off a huge chunk of code when I decided to make it multiplayer -- so I'm not surprised it's taking me a long time to work through all of this. Medkits and mines are in, but non-functional. That is, touching them does nothing, and the AI doesn't know when to deploy them just yet.

I properly separated the old code and tossed it. It was only designed around mouse+kbd control and things were hard-coded to that, like the camera and such. Again, leftovers from CGA and coding that shit like ten ninjas on shake n' bake meth. Now all three forms of input (mouse+kbd, gamepad, bot AI) press d-pads and buttons on their virtual controllers, and the movement and animation code looks exclusively at that.

Now I'm also running dick-first into the camera and AI movement problems, because now I have the ability to genuinely control any of the four characters, and right now the camera only "knows" how to follow the white dude (aka. The Captain), and so do the bots. There's a "white powah" joke in there somewhere.

So, yes, still slogging through the craziness. Shaping up all right, yadda yadda, whatever.
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Sirocco
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PostPosted: Tue Sep 25, 2012 3:48 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote



Crap. AI takes so freaking long to code. It's easy, but tedious. Even once you have all the building blocks for making state changes, you have to detail all the decisions, and then test them to make sure nothing went derpy. It's fun to watch the results, but just time-consuming in the extreme.

Friendly bots know how to drop medkits, and pick them up when they are in trouble. They generally let whoever is in the worst shape get dibs on any medkits, but there's an override that says "if I'm in really crappy shape and there's a kit close by.... screw everyone. Get it." That's rather amusing, as you sometimes see two bots make a mad dash for the kit, but only one get the goods :) The loser kinda slinks off... heeh heh.

Damage is completely coded, finally. Enemy attacks can hurt the players, and kill them off if they absorb too much.

I'm guessing I'll spend some time tonight finishing up the mines. They need their hit detection (super easy), some explosion animation (might take some experimentation), and a little fix to their vectors to make sure they don't fly off the stage (also easy). Right now they fly around randomly, like the player tossed a handful in the air over their head. Sometimes they land too far up :)
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Sirocco
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PostPosted: Tue Sep 25, 2012 7:10 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Mines are done, but the bots don't know when to deploy them just yet. I'll fix that tomorrow evening. That should be simple. I'd also like to tweak the skill so that it builds up to a maximum number of mines. So, if you use the skill while it's only 50% refreshed (which occurs over time), you get half your maximum number of mines. If you wait for the skill to completely refresh, you get reminded by the green rings emanating from your character.

This will allow the scout to save up mines for goon rushes, or drop them 2-3 at a time when in the thick of battle.

This is going to be one crazy-ass game.
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Gil
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PostPosted: Tue Sep 25, 2012 11:06 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Heh, for some reason, after all that AI talk, I'm anxious to try it out. Congratulations, I'm officially into this project
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Sirocco
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PostPosted: Wed Sep 26, 2012 4:03 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:

Heh, for some reason, after all that AI talk, I'm anxious to try it out. Congratulations, I'm officially into this project


Groovy! One down, billions to go!



I'm working out some kinks tonight; fixing some oversights and menu left-overs. I've also added in the code to let bots deploy mines. I started with a basic level of stupidity, which I had plans to enhance by several different techniques. As it turns out, I didn't have to -- for some weird reason the bot does a great job of tossing mines where they need to go. I wish everything could work out that well?!

Of course, when we get into bosses and things like barricades, this level of intelligence might not hold up well. We'll see.

Mines are el-retardo powerful, and can knock out a normal enemy on the spot. With those, and a rapid-fire weapon, the scout is geared toward chewing up groups of on-foot baddies. The skill fully recharges over time, I'm guessing around fifteen seconds. Triggering the skill pro-rates the effect, so if you're halfway recharged, you toss half as many mines.



The game also saves your controller setup. Shoulda done that a while back...

So, yeah. Me and 3 bots can kick a lot of ass now :)
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n29
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PostPosted: Wed Sep 26, 2012 5:14 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Holy eff balls, I'm gone for a couple of months and Sirocco Shuts up and Dies! Looks awesome, can't wait to play it!
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Sirocco
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PostPosted: Wed Sep 26, 2012 5:45 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

n29 wrote:
Holy eff balls, I'm gone for a couple of months and Sirocco Shuts up and Dies! Looks awesome, can't wait to play it!


Hah! That's what you get for wandering off into the woods for months. Bears will eat you.
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Bean
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PostPosted: Wed Sep 26, 2012 5:54 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Holy shit, I've been so entrenched in my own shit I missed the progress of this. Looks awesome! Also, it kills me that I spend years making a game and then see you bust out with something like that and it's just as exciting. I'm doing it wrong!

-Bean
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Sirocco
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PostPosted: Wed Sep 26, 2012 7:56 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

It's a lot easier when you set your sights low from the beginning!

It looks like I won't have this finished by the end of the month like I wanted, but that's fine. I'll keep hammering away at it in my spare time. I have another non-game-related project that will be taking up the rest of the year.
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Sirocco
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 27, 2012 6:44 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I have the camera positioning itself on its own, which might end up being easier than I was expecting. Sirocco's theory of inverted difficulty strikes again? This is one of those things that will take considerable time to get "just right." I'll likely be tweaking it until the day the game is released... heh.

I also dropped player and enemy movement speed by ~15%. The playing area is fairly small, so at the original speed enemies go from the edge of the screen to halfway up your ass in just over a second. Way too fast! This gives you, and them, time to do some real positioning, rather than just moving out of the way of mass attacks.

Lastly, I hopped into several pieces of audio software and started working on some voices for the characters. What I have now is rough, but I can work on it as time goes. I have three stock phrases per character that are randomly used when skills are triggered. This doesn't happen 100% of the time, otherwise you'd get tired of it reeeeeeeeeal quick.
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Sirocco
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PostPosted: Fri Sep 28, 2012 1:59 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'm getting some work in before my evening is taken up by other (cool) things.

The Captain's shield now works, and blocks enemy projectiles. The shield starts out large, but steadily shrinks. This is good, because I'm working on two new enemies: a helicopter/drone thingy that shoots at you from the air, and another foot soldier that hangs out toward the edge of the screen and throws knives at you.
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Sirocco
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PostPosted: Sat Sep 29, 2012 2:11 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Meh. Not being productive today.

I did at least fix the gamepad aiming calculation error that has been annoying me. Now I can actually use my gamepad :)
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Sirocco
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PostPosted: Sun Sep 30, 2012 1:53 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'm not getting anything done today. Just thinking, and recharging my batteries.

I wanted to make a bad-ass boss battle at the end of the game, and also wanted to provide myself with a good technical challenge. I think I've settled on using skeletal animation in 2D. Apologies is this isn't the proper nomenclature, as I haven't done any research on it. Essentially you have a large creature that moves around, and the torso and limbs are created by linking rotated sprites at joints. I wasn't certain I'd go this route, but around Thursday or so I figured it'd be a good exercise, since I've never done anything like that before.

I'm linking some youtube vids of this type of animation.




Look to the second half for each of these two vids. Boss has two forms :(




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IMakeGames
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PostPosted: Sun Sep 30, 2012 2:13 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

That's quite some work to pull off! I've never done it myself, but I think a powerful and flexible editor for skeletal animation is almost required. For what I see in the castlevania videos, definitely! I don't want to imagine hardcoding values/parameters/motions to form animations like these.

And with that, a proper file format for storing, heaps of code and a lot of time... you've got your work cut out for yourself! :D
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Sirocco
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PostPosted: Sun Sep 30, 2012 3:33 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

What I think I'll find is that I'll be able to save some time if I treat the joints like real-world ones... giving them specific ranges of motion and speed. I believe there will be much work getting the movements defined, but if it's only one monster I can take the hit.
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Bean
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PostPosted: Sun Sep 30, 2012 9:42 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

This is pretty much how I'm doing my character animation. Only I'm doing it in 3D but it's the same idea. The character is made up of a bunch of things that get rotated around, be them sprites or 3d models it's the same principle.

For what you're trying to do I would suggest using keyframing. Have a table of all the poses you want the character to use. For each pose have a list of the rotation each sprite should result in and the number of frames the movement should take.
Some things might need several keyframes so you'll need a way to advance to the next keyframe once the current one completes. Each keyframe applies a speed to all of the sprites so that they reach their destination in x number of frames.

Then you make a list of positions, stuff like:
Stand, Walk, Jump, Fall, Attack, etc
Each of these would execute a list of keyframes.

I can go into more detail but I'm sure you get the idea.


-Bean
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PoV
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PostPosted: Mon Oct 01, 2012 6:31 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I like calling it component or modular animation; Some people call it cut-out animation. Animation tools like Flash and Toonboom also support this, but their problem is they don't export in to anything optimal, just streams of frames.

Me and many other people backed a kickstarter campaign to finally create a general tool for creating these sort of animations. It's still early, but showing much promise.

http://www.brashmonkey.com/spriter.htm
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mikedoty
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PostPosted: Mon Oct 01, 2012 7:21 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

You've been doing it wrong Sirocco, think how much money you could have scored from Kickstarter for your Moai :)
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