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rllmuk
A nice cup of tea

The Game Development Thread

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Oh. My. God. This being the first time I've done anything 'proper' with JavaScript I expected a few gotchas but... just spent a week hunting down a bug in my method of restoring the state of the 3rd party random number generator that I'm using. Feels so good now it's sorted, apart from the embarrassment at what an obvious mistake it was in hindsight (d'oh!)

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All mistakes are obvious in hindsight. Like the one where we all stayed up until 7am the next day trying to work out why our controls didn't work. I'd set an integer value to 6 instead of 3. :facepalm:

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So I stayed up all night and wrote up a Sudoku game in Flash that, in executable form, loads in JSON Sudoku puzzles and spits them back out again as a solved file. I'm quite proud of that.

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Heavily WIP scene (tree bases not blended, water pixel shaders not applied, no river bed, etc etc etc) but it's nice to have got some graphics done after so many coding tasks. There's nothing more motivating than getting a load of art assets done to play with.

waterings.png

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I'm trying to get my damn work done but thanks to a lovely recruitment consultant I have five interviews this week. Already been chatting to some guys in Glasgow about their interactive storytelling project then I'm off to Leamington Spa and Oxford on Tuesday and Wednesday. Phone interviews with another Leamington company and a place in Barcelona on Friday.

Unfortunately I've had a sudden panic attack about my programming skills but hopefully my work is actually up to snuff.

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Good luck dude. Remember the interview works both ways, which is something people doing code interview seem to forget from time to time - there were too places I interviewed at almost 9 years ago (before I did my post grad) where the coding questions were just a war between me & the interview, extreme C++ minutia, extreme dick waving stuff that's nothing more than the interviewer showing off or the other great one "how would you do X?" (in this case a crowd in a football stadium, cheaply on the PS2) so I gave it a couple of mins though and gave them a couple of solutions, response "no, we do it like this", what...

Both those interview put me off working for those places, these were the lead coders coming off as dicks. I've since worked with people who worked for both of them and they were dicks to work with/for.

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I think it's pretty shocking that this sub-forum is barely touched so I've started this thread for people to discuss what new things their teaching themselves in regards to game programming.

I used to post little bits and pieces in the Forum Works In Progress thread here but I kind of got distracted with other stuff. I don’t really do any serious programming – I’m not studying anything or in a development job – but I do sometimes dabble in making Flash games and toys for my own amusement, just to see if an idea I come up with in my head is feasible in practice. A lot of the stuff I do is pretty lazily slapped together and could probably be achieved through more efficient script if I could be bothered to teach myself, but for the moment I think my knowledge is at a point where most of my headaches come from balanced and fair gameplay rather than fundamental code-y stuff.

One of the little playthings I’ve been messing with recently is a sort of “random battle generator” in Flash, where the player takes part in an oldschool RPG battle using physical and elemental attacks whilst discovering strengths and weaknesses the enemy might have. I had always thought about creating a “traditional” RPG-lite in Flash, but as I said I get too concerned about balance issues. I got the feeling that if I ended up creating (for example) an elemental attack that could be used in 99% of situations, there wouldn’t be any sort of tactics or strategy. So I drew out a little table showing attack types down the first column (physical, earth, air, fire, aqua), enemy strengths against elements across the first row (weak, neutral, strong) and general damage ranges in the main table. (40-50HP lost from an attack the enemy is neutral to, 1-3 HP lost from an attack the enemy is strong against, etc.)

I haven’t thought about player levels yet, but I was thinking about creating the currency for these elemental attacks (MP, magic points, spirit points, whatever) and then increasing HP and MP on each level, allowing stronger attacks to be used more often. Also, the player is neutral against all elemental attacks at the moment, so the only strategy comes from picking the right attack against the enemy before the player’s HP is drained. Enemy strengths and weaknesses are decided randomly (and I have separate graphics for body parts that change in appearance depending on certain elemental strengths so as to give clues to the player) so there’s always the possibility of an enemy being strong against everything, but I don’t have a “flee” button yet.

As I say, it’s more of a plaything as opposed to something serious, but maybe if I add enough stuff to it I can wrap it up in an “overworld” and add some BGM. :P

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Currently kicking my metric project to death. I'll have the game up for people to test tomorrow. Shouldn't take more than about 15 minutes to do the playthrough and a quick survey.

Also, I got the job at NaturalMotion. I'm pretty chuffed about it, and also a bit terrified, but in a good way. It'll be nice to do a job I love, rather than customer service.

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Played and done respectively. It's a lovely little game :) I think I had one weird instance where I had to restart because Aida was running against thin air, although I think I had moved a block awkwardly beforehand. I also scrambled to make platforms at times because I couldn't keep up :doh: but moving from my lousy laptop touchpad to a proper mouse helped a lot. The presentation is excellent and the in-game hints work really well, and once it had finished I wanted to see more of it. :)

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I'll get you a link to the Facebook version while it's still live, which is considerably more stable and finished. We can't keep it up for long as it's only there for research purposes while we negotiate transferring the IP from the university.

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I've been working on a rewrite of my Retro-Library, essentialy converting it from C code with SDL to C# with XNA.

So far, Sprite engine is nearly complete and I've added code for Backgrounds to render, although they are a bit static and not much fun to look at.

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As a bit of a break from the coding side of things I've decided to give my iOS action puzzle game a bit of a graphical overhaul. As in completely redo it, make it less dark and more inviting, this is all work in progress:

Make the tiles cleaner and easier to read, background, buttons & text still to be changed:

before:

el3.jpg

after:

Fr3Z7.png

Testing out new background for the front end, again old buttons & text:

before

el5.jpg

The game tiles in the background moved, but I think I'm going to sacrifice that, after:

Q9aTE.png

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Started re-making a game i had started last year. quite surprised how quick i got it up and running compared to the time it took to get the first one up and ready in some kind of playable form.

However, i think i am thinking of using the same engine but changing the gameplay quite a bit to make it a bit more interesting. Didn't help when a mate of mine said "you need to make shorter games for the iphone/ipad finish of your other game". Kinda put me off a bit but i think ill still continue. (oh and ill finish off the other game at some point..)

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I'm working on something I can't talk about at NaturalMotion, all C++. I'm feeling a bit in at the deep end since I've not done anything except JavaScript, SQL and PHP for six months but I'm catching up with it really quick. Looking forward to sharing the game with you once it's announced.

Not really doing any of my own stuff, and NM has dibs on the IP if I do, but I might have a stab at some prototypes once I settle in.

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Gone back to working on a game I started early 2011. Going to try and flesh it out a bit, as it was a simple game in the first place. Re-did some of the graphics last night, which is nice as i dont get much chance to do that lately.

Certainly not gonna win any awards but it would be nice to finally release something on IOS. Nothing wrong to stop me releasing as flash or PC/MAC i guess.

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Lots of progress on my game! Have spent many hours fine tuning the controls. I'm still not 100% happy but its definatly much better than the control routines i was using before.

Added power ups last night and its changed the flow of the game hugely for the better. Will have to get a video on here soon!

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