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Too dumb to make it, too dumb to quit.

I made an ollie!

Posted by , 12 November 2016 - - - - - - · 951 views

One of the levels I've been working on requires you to use a skateboard.

 

Allthough in the level you just have to ride the skate through ramps and jumps (hard enough), for this screenshot saturday I decided to invest a little bit of time trying to see if I could make the character perform an ollie on the flat ground.

 

It took quite some time (30 minutes?), its not the most technical ollie you will see... but hey, the wheels are on the air and the character lands it. I'm happy =).

 

http://bit.ly/2fMFjaP

 

Edit: does somebody know why is my .gif not showing in this post? It shows correctly and animated in the editor, but not when I click "Publish Now".
More info about the game: themostposerheroes.com




Adding a companion.

Posted by , 05 March 2016 - - - - - - · 733 views

There are three heroes in my game. They all move the same. Move the limbs -> thus the torso moves. Enter the robotic companion.

 

The Robot idea came from the observation that sometimes you need a little push to make your character go through some obstacle or reach a destination. I consider the idea of having an almighty hand available for "cheating", ala deus ex machina, that you could summon arbitrarily and it would come and push your little paper doll. But having a robot companion not only was better suited, it could also add an extra dimension for the game.

 

So here is the little robot:

 

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As you can see, the robot floats around. Thus it's much easier to control, just drag it wherever you want it to go.

 

This little robot can be used for several purposes:

 

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Pushing your heroes around is one of the best uses for the robot. When you are stucked, or can't reach something, or you start falling to the wrong side and are afraid to move.

 

The robot is not so strong though, so don't expect it to be able to lift you off very high and just fly you through the level. It can help, but don't push it.

 

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The robot is not only useful, but needed in some puzzles. Its small size, flying abilities and full control are perfect in some scenarios.

 

More info on the game and a small alpha demo: www.themostposerheroes.com




Even more changes to first 6 levels.

Posted by , 28 January 2016 - - - - - - · 772 views

I made several small changes to all levels, trying to smooth any rough edges the testers find.

 

One problem with this approach: The games are going to be painted (as in, no tiles or reusable pieces). That means everytime I change a level, a (theoretical) artist should change their drawings and reexport them, which is not good. Not only that, since the game is so sensible to sizes and positions, the artist is not going to have as much freedom as I would like to give them, since they have to respect proportions and positions of several objects in the levels.

 

The changes:

 

Level 1: use to have a button, now has a lever. Several people struggle with the fact that buttons need to be push from the top.

 

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In fact every button now can be pushed from any direction. Instead of having a square shape, now they are round shape.

 

Level 2:
Not changed.

 

Level 3:
Now the arrow lighten up to clearly show how they change directions.

 

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Level 4:
Replaced a hallway with a vacuum tunel, to make it easier for the player to move around. Made the pro token easier to grab.

 

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Level 5:
50% remade. Replace a bunch of repetitive easy-to-guess task with only one hard task that should take a few tries to get right.

 

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Level 6:
not changed.

 

Demo 0.6.4 is available for you to try. Feedback welcomed!




Smoothing out level 2 and 3.

Posted by , 12 January 2016 - - - - - - · 1,379 views

Today there was some level design progress!

 

Based on some feedback, I've been working on the levels to solve details that players are striggling with.

The second level had a few problems:

 

* The wording of the mission briefing made people believe that they had to get out of the pod. This was fixed not only by rewriting it but by attaching the character with a seat bealt to the pod.

* The pod was simplified by removing the controls from the outside of the pod, into a separate deattached panel. Since the original configuration seemed like the pod was actually closing rather than opening.

 

* Some coloring relations were set up to let the player know what controls work together.

 

* The pedal use to be too close to the hand, and somewhat pushable by it. Now was moved to the bottom of the pod, the hand can no longer reached it (by a significant distant) and the fact that you have to use your foot should be pretty obvious now.

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The third level required some changes too:

 

The new additions:

 

* A red cable links the button to the marker.
* The marker is now bigger and clearer to point out the current color.
* The arrows were made bigger to tell the player what each pedal does.

 

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Remember, you can download a demo from here (windows v0.6.1).
I could really use some feedback =), specially in level design.




New Demo out.

Posted by , 07 January 2016 - - - - - - · 1,036 views

It's been a long time since I posted. I've been making significant changes based on some feedback received.

There's a new alpha demo out in case you want to try it: www.themostposerheroes.com (<-- do you have some spare time? feedback will be really appreciated!!)

The big main difference is that now the story starts out in space.

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Why? Because without gravity a lot of issues are resolved. Movement is much easier, and I'm guessing that without gravity players will realise a few things about physics (mainly, that you need to push yourself away from stuff in order to move).

 

I will introduce gravity in small steps, first entering a low gravity field, before the player is actually deployed on earth to complete the mission.

 

If you have the time please check the demo out, I need some feedback. =)

 

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GUI/Tools programming vs Game programming

Posted by , 08 October 2015 - - - - - - · 4,138 views

Dear diary...

I've been doing a lot of GUI/tool programming for the last two months (mainly building a level/character/campaing editor).
And I have noticed a huge difference in my mental state while programming GUI/tools sutff.

As in, when I'm programming games, I'm constantly on my toes: "Is this efficient? Am I making a copy of this? What O(n) is this? How can I avoid this loop?" etc etc... basically I didn't realize until now that every time I'm game programming I'm like this:

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Pictured: 10.000 actions in 16 ms.


Now, don't think I'm a optimization maniac. In fact, after seeing this talk on gpp2015... apparently I'm not even doing enough.
I try to live by the rule number 1 of optimization: "Don't do it"; but I do tend to have a sense of awareness that if I can effortlesly redesign my algorithm to make it faster, I do, as long as it doesn't take me 2x+ the time to code it.


But... my eyes openend when I programmed my tools and my GUI. It felt like this:

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Pictured: 1 action in 100 ms.

My mind was like: "Iterate through all 20 items? Lol, sure... Open 15 files to build this menu? Be my guest!"

Like, the reaction time was huge (user dependant), the number of items being handling was ridiculous low, 20... 30 options. It felt like a vacation.

So, my question to you... Is this a normal feeling?

If it's not: am I doing something wrong? Game programming should not be more stressful than "regular" programming. Any advice?

If it IS: If this is a common feeling, I am seriusly considering not coming back to the game industry once the indie-dream is over. I mean, if I can feel this relaxed on my work environment (and the higher salary is nice too), then maybe my doubts about what industry should I go back to is easier to answer.

Any thoughts?


Character Editor is done

Posted by , 26 September 2015 - - - - - - · 859 views

It was very simple to create since I had all the screens ready.
I just separated three screens form the Level Editor (Image Editor, Part Editor and Object Editor) and packed them into a Character Editor.


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Now you can create your own character, with any number of limbs and its own physical properties, and use it for your campaign. Once the character is saved, it can be loaded for the Character Screen on the Level Editor and set to a starting position and pose, so it can be used on the level.

I was pleasantly surprised by how little time it took me to recreate my old character from scratch using the new editor.

To give you a comparison, this is what my older character "editor" looked like:

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Quite an improvement, if I may say so myself =).


Level Editor done.

Posted by , 23 September 2015 - - - - - - · 905 views

The level editor is done.

It took me a lot longer that I estimated, but I have everything in place now so hopefully I can start focusing on level design.

It is divided in several "screens". The Image Editor lets you load files, set their UV coords, set origin, and if they are animated sprites you can attach them animations.

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After an image is prepared, you can load them on the back/fore ground, or use them in the Part Editor to create a box2d part:

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The Part Editor asigns physical parts to an image. Basically 1 image = 1 object. You can also add shapes by using circles, rectangles and polygons; each with their own physical properties.

Then come the Object Editor which puts together the parts to create links/trees of physical parts joined by revolute/prismatic joints.

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And there's also de physics editor which, after loading a background image, let's you draw the global static physics of the level for the character to collide with:

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Extra screens:

Character positioner (lets you decide where is there character going to start and in the initial position).
Sensor Editor (lets you put sensor all around the level that trigger events)
Victory editor (lets you choose the victory conditions for the level)


I'm planning to include this editor with the game, but probably I need to make it easier to use and hide a lot of details from the user. But that's for another time...

I need a character editor now...


Building a level editor.

Posted by , 06 August 2015 - - - - - - · 792 views

I've been delaying the Level Editor for too long. Always with the excuse that I had better things to do, or that I only needed one or two ore levels for the demo, so it was a waste to make a full editor right now, and I could survive with manually modifying txt file for now.

Well, excuses are over and now a full editor is needed to start the development of the entire game.

The early build is out! www.themostposerheroes.com
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And if you could provide me some feedback would be awesome.


So now full production on the level editor. I'm gonna include it on the final game so people can create their own levels, so I can not just have a barely working version, it needs to be slightly polished and feature complete.

Here are some gimp drafts I made to try to see the scope of the project. So far it's seems like it's gonna be a decent amount of work.

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Brutal Soul-Crashing Dream-Destroyer Feedback required.

Posted by , 31 July 2015 - - - - - - · 839 views

Ok,
I finally managed to put together a 6 level early build of The Most Poser Heroes.


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Please, I need brutally honest feedback. Yeah, the one that destroys your soul and dreams.

Here is an old trailer, and here are gifs and screenshots.
Dowload (windows only): www.stochasticlints.com/builds/TMPH_0_5.zip

Things I'm interested in listening:

1] Tutorials: Did you understand how to play? Are they enough?
2] Difficulty: Is this a game you would clasify as hard?
3] Controls: Did they get in your way? Is something missing to let you achieve your goal?
4] Gameplay: Did you have fun? Do you see yourself playing further? What level did you reached before giving up? If the game was not fun, why do you think that is?

Any other suggestion is welcome.
Please ignore: Artwork and sound.
No music, so use your favorite playlist.

You can post your feedback here on the comments, or, if you want to curse and get personal, email: stochasticlints@gmail.com

Thanks.






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