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lmbarns

Member Since 18 Aug 2011
Offline Last Active Aug 15 2014 08:00 AM

#5059246 AR games

Posted by lmbarns on 04 May 2013 - 01:24 PM

Yeah that's how it works guys. I can use an image or drawing or 3d object like a soda can as a target. When you open the app and point the camera at a target it recognizes, it can spawn whatever you want within the game engine that can have whatever game logic you want.

 

At work I made cards as targets with 3d animated fbx characters for each card. If you move the cards close enough to each other, they play animations and do damage until one dies.  I also made intro and exits so if the camera loses the target a particle effect starts and the character disappears. When the camera recognizes the card an intro particle effect plays and the character appears, playing an idle animation.

 

You can rotate the cards, pick them up and as long as part of the target is still showing it's pretty good at following it.

 

Similarly I was thinking of making kids puzzles where once you put it together, you can view it as a 3d scene with animated animals and stuff.

 

For tower defense you could position your pieces on a game board or on a table top, and point your cam at it to watch it play out. Tablets are better with big screens than phones but it runs smoothly on both.

 

I made a mob spawner than drops models at an interval and they can walk toward a waypoint and you could put your character cards in it's path to make them fight. And if any of the enemies make it to their waypoint it counts against you.

 

But you can apply any game logic you'd use in a game engine. The camera feed is simply the input. Once a target is recognized you can spawn 1 or many models with or without animations, with or without AI...

 

This was last weekend when I first got it working, but each target spawns different set of models. In this vid only 1 target at a time but now it can track dozens at the same time:

 

@mipmap yeah at work they were showing me the ikea catalog and we're doing something similar with a different catalog to show as a demo to prospective buyers. You can spin the cards around to view the models from 360 degrees. And you can even add virtual buttons where when map off a region of the target and when it's occluded from the camera stream you can trigger a function in the game engine...

 

My whole job right now is to make demos to pitch to some big brands. I work at a post-production studio with a half dozen artists and me as the programmer. They hired me to make stuff more interactive, some is just simply javascript and html but the larger projects are conceptualizing AR applications. I'm making stuff that goes on a sedna for digital billboards in big cities.

 

Edit:: One idea I was thinking was to go take pictures of landmarks in the city from common positions and use them as targets which you could spawn stuff around. I also made a screenshot script that will snap a shot of the virtual stuff over the real life scene. So I could make targets of statues and when you load the app and point the cam at the statue you can add ears, mustaches, noses, hats, etc and people can pose in front of it and it will all be in the image in their phone's gallery.




#5058784 AR games

Posted by lmbarns on 02 May 2013 - 09:19 PM

I'm trying to come up with some simple games using augmented reality. I think long games would be annoying holding a screen in front of you to play, so I was thinking about mini games. A simplified tower defense where you set out your pieces and watch how it unfolds could be neat.

 

Last weekend I got the basic mechanics working for recognizing cards, and this week wrote some game logic to attack each other if the cards are near enough, and a monster spawner to create mobs at an interval to pop out bad guys.  

 

So a tower defense with physical card pieces, say 10-15 that you can place in an orientation, maybe on a printable game board so you can lay your cards out according to tiles. Then start the app on a tablet with a camera and watch it all come to life?

 

I got some basic functions for virtual buttons, if you occlude part of the card with your finger that's mapped off as a button it can trigger a function. 

 

For development I was just using my webcam, then making builds and testing on my gf's phone when it's available. Seems to run great:

 

This is from last Saturday when I had the basic mechanics to recognize multiple cards and 2 virtual buttons that toggle skeletons on/off also I don't have a printer so I just pulled the textures/targets up on the monitor and point the camera at it, but it works on the phone with rotation just fine.

 




#5039722 Tumbleweeds - A creative challenge with rewards

Posted by lmbarns on 05 March 2013 - 03:54 PM

Tumbleweed Tumble.

 

You are a delivery driver for amco feed and you control a dilapidated old farm truck named bessy that goes a minimum speed of 50 mph at all times.

 

Your delivery route includes multiple cities across southwestern texas. You have to get to each stop as fast as you can while dodging tumbleweeds because your vehicle lacks a windshield.

 

Taking a tumbleweed to the face at those speeds blinds you and causes you to wreck your vehicle and lose all of your delivery. Your boss gives you a second chance, if you can make your next delivery you'll keep your job (continue playing) if you lose 2-3 deliveries the game is over, you're fired.

 

Gameplay revolves around steering to avoid flying tumbleweeds or find shortcuts, timing a turbo boost that has a cooldown, ramping off jumps to avoid walls of tumbleweeds.




#5039570 What would you make armour out of?

Posted by lmbarns on 05 March 2013 - 10:47 AM

If you have a "plains" area, reed grass could be used to make a lower level armor. Or padding for other armors.




#5026539 Racing AI + game ideas...

Posted by lmbarns on 28 January 2013 - 03:53 PM

Thanks guys. Here's the map I'm going to use for the first release, can always branch off and add more later. There's 4 towns and the home "farm". The colored lines are races you can launch from each town. I was hoping to have 3+ "contests" for each town and have it randomly offer them so it's not always the same. It costs money to enter and you win money for winning. If you don't have enough money to enter contests you can do some small tasks for npcs within the town or haul resources to other towns.

 

s5aiyc.jpg

 

One issue I need to figure out is the main character. On the home farm level it uses a tap to move controller to move a "fairy" around and tame animals, but when you ride animals it loads them as fps controller with 3rd person camera and no rider, just "guiding" the animal so to speak. I haven't animated a riding character or looked for one on stock sites.

 

The animals are different sizes as well, the goat is 1/4 the size of the horse which is half the size of the elephant, the smaller animals turn faster and can be faster, I should probably make it slow you down when you turn or when you are on rougher terrain.

 

I like the idea of riding out to look for the chickens to gather eggs for a task that can be repeated daily, as well as find missing animal that didn't come in with the rest, little quests from the farmer.

 

I thought about making the elephant destroy jumps by running into them while the other animals jump over it. As it is now if you jump over a jump and get the treat floating above it, you have a small chance of increasing the animals stats, which increase it's speed. So while you're racing and trying to beat the other animals, you have incentive to try to hit some jumps as well.

 

I think I should incorporate more with food, like you can feed the different animals food you've gathered.

 

Building your own competition courses could be really good and something to keep people busy, instead of the buildings. I thought about making some resource management mechanics where the animals have jobs at the local zoo, so the more you tame the more money you start aggregating, and you have to buy food to keep your tamed animals happy or they go wild.

 

Dressage used to piss me off as a kid, I was one of the few guys in pony club hehe with all the hotties, I did eventing and dressage was never as fun as show jumping or cross country jumping. One thing I noticed was games that are basically riding simulation games get nitpicked by riders for not being perfect, where I was hoping to go for something more silly but that would interest girls. You can ride a goat, sheep, pig, etc as well so might be funny to more people.

 

I think the costumes is a great idea as well.

 

I was also thinking if you run into too many obstacles on an animal it becomes injured and you can't ride it for 3 real life days or something(based off timestamp). There's a total of 30 different animals so hopefully they'd have something they could ride as a replacement.

 

Here's something just for laughs, not part of what I'm working on:




#5025850 Racing AI + game ideas...

Posted by lmbarns on 26 January 2013 - 01:50 PM

I've been chipping away at a kids game for a while and am looking for ways to make the racing AI more competitive. I believe it's a matter of slowing down if they're too far ahead of the player or speeding up if they're too far behind, and while they're in the "zone" around the player they're "competitive".

 

I'm using waypoints to drive the racers, I guess I could check distance from each racer to the player every so often, but it's a mobile game so performance is an issue.

 

In the game you're racing animals rather than vehicles, and the player's animal grows stronger over time. The animals have a strength and agility attribute which determine it's speed and maxCarryWeight. So I can't just set the opponent's speeds equal to the player or there's no sense of "progression".

 

One idea to improve the dynamics of the races is to add powerups and hazards. So far I've made 2 powerups, one is a speedboost for a few seconds, the other is a jump that can send you over terrain or somewhere as a shortcut.

 

I'm obviously looking at the old mario kart games for ideas with powerups and racetrack design, but aside from some mechanics the game's are much different.

 

The basic idea of the game was to be a "combat-less" rpg of sorts, you can tame then ride 30 different animals. You can ride around a somewhat open world with 5 village/towns. At each town you can enter (for a fee) whatever contest is happening there, right now I only have a few courses that are like steeplechase or "cross country" type races with jumps. I was thinking of adding barrel racing, sprint racing, and whatever else I can think of that use the simple mechanics of "go" and "turn/steer".  You can also accept jobs to haul resources to another town, the amount based off your maxCarryWeight.

 

Some quest ideas I had were finding a missing animal, retrieving an item, guiding a lost animal home before dark, scouting/investigate, anyone have any other ideas that involve steering and driving an animal?

 

Here's some of the prototype:

 

This is a little prototype "task generator" that's easy to swap out the icons/messages for a variety of tasks, one use is an npc might ask you to help assemble a few items, the farmer might ask you to feed an animal the right food, when you find a treasure chest you might have to try a combination of key turns to try to open it.

 

 

 

Another idea I threw together, but it's too much work for the time being, was to let the player buy building deeds, throw it on the ground and touch it to create the building at that spot, let the player position it, then confirm placement and destroy the deed, save the coordinates and rotation of the building to an xml file that's read each time the game starts to recreate the placements:

Would be a lot of work to make dozens of buildings, but would sure make an excellent gold sink to keep the player making money to build their dream farm or whatever.

 

I also thought about at each town/village letting a player buy land which they can keep animals at, or which unlocks new wild animals on that land for the player to tame and then ride.

 

Any feedback appreciated. I've been disabled for half of last year and couldn't work on anything. I'm trying to get back into this but have to take oxycodone and nerve pain meds to function and they kill creativity. :(




#4977673 Tutorials - How to Learn a Game's Mechanics

Posted by lmbarns on 07 September 2012 - 09:26 AM

I think it depends on the game and target audience.

I'm making games for kids and found that dual touch controls were too difficult for the 4 year old I tested with, while the tap to move was intuitive enough for a 4 year old.

I made 3 quick tutorial levels, one you just use one touchpad to go forward collecting some objects. Once you've collected them you go to the second training level where you collect objects in a circle, once you collect them you load to a 3rd level which introduces the jump mechanic. Once you get through it you enter the main world.

Now I'm wondering in the interface, how much to add? I can make a blinking arrow pointing at various controls during the tutorial, but it can get really complex.


#4961770 Monetization ideas

Posted by lmbarns on 21 July 2012 - 03:13 PM

Threw up a basic example of what I'm talking about:


The headings on the webpages didn't show up well in the video, but it launches a different webpage for each ad in game. I just threw some solid color divs on the webpages as fake banners for demonstration purposes.

Loads the browser very fast, going back to the game has a few second pause. Hopefully rewards in game would make people want to take a few seconds to open and close the browser giving me a dozen impressions each time.


And heck I could research what kids are into, put a big banner of a supersoaker or whatever on the page that they might click giving a lot more than just page impressions.


#4961594 Which software to produce 2D art like Angry Birds?

Posted by lmbarns on 21 July 2012 - 12:29 AM

You could make that with illustrator, fireworks, photoshop, or in flash(especially characters in flash then use elsewhere).


#4961429 Ideas wanted: RPG Spell combination system

Posted by lmbarns on 20 July 2012 - 01:43 PM

I made something along those lines for my rpg where you can acquire 4 runestones of fire, water, air, earth and put forth combinations to create up to 15 spells from 4 runes.

I thought about the same thing for a survival game where you pick up items in game which can be put forth in different combinations to form an attack.

You can then use the staff/weapon as a modifier, so having a wooden staff + 4 ingredients can make 15 spells, while having a metal staff and the same combinations triggers15 different spells.




#4955354 Do you remember gamebooks (books where you are the hero and jump from page to...

Posted by lmbarns on 03 July 2012 - 10:41 AM

Wow, it looks like they signed a deal to release a new version on iOS and android.

Looking at the list of "Fighting Fantasy" books, they're amazing.

This one has a "fear score" determined before you start playing, each disturbing event adds between 1-3 fear score, if the player gets to the max fear number they "die of fear". lol http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/House_of_Hell Not only that, it's a horror taking place modern day, pretty rare and it's from 1984. I want to use that in a dungeon crawler.

This one: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/City_of_Thieves_%28gamebook%29

Most encounters in the city are potentially lethal, several being no-win situations where the best outcome involves injury or loss of money.

YEEEESSSSSS....


All of them look amazing. Great inspiration.

Actually this company has a bunch of them on iOS http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Big_Blue_Bubble#iPad_Games


#4951786 Designing for children...

Posted by lmbarns on 22 June 2012 - 11:56 AM

Anyone have any good resources on the topic? I've been reading what I find on Google, most are about educational value or lack of in games and not so much about different age groups, cognitive/motor skills of the age groups, etc. in regards to gaming.

I'm making a short and simple game that consists of a few 3d mini games with a couple different control schemes for mobile devices.

One is a simple touch to move controller to move around by touching locations on the screen.

The other 2 use 2 touchpads, the left one gives the same as w,a,s,d while the right one rotates/steers. The player steers the vehicle through a linear course collecting items, or not. I figure I need to make a time limit on the level in case the player just wanders around aimlessly lost that will after 5min or something take them to the loading screen.

I was playing some kids games yesterday, maybe they were for a younger audience, but they took control away from the player completely, you just watch as your character moves along the track making noises, pressing a single jump button to jump over obstacles as they approach. So I'm wondering if driving, steering and jumping is going to be too much for a 5-7 year old?

So far assumptions I'm following:
-No violence, no combat, no scary sounds/monsters
-Constant feedback effects (audio, flashing icon/graphics)
-Happy/silly sound effects
-Only positive actions acknowledged (player doesn't die or lose lives)
-Simple as possible (goal is to make a game in less than 40 hours, so keeping as simple as possible)

Things I'm not sure about:
-Dialogue(I should probably do audio versions of all my dialogue? Or should I use dialogue to teach reading[simple phrases, or audio with reading])

-Losing pets (one task is to retrieve a lost animal, when you bring it to the npc it takes the animal away and rewards you) but I'm wondering if that would make a kid sad. I remember in UO angry parents cause their kids pet was killed.

-Controller, can a 5-7 year old kid move, steer and jump a vehicle? Probably need a demo to orient the PC with the controller before each level. Or a basic instruction lesson at the start of the level for sure.

Any thoughts or resources?

Here's my prototyped loading screen, I need to make graphics, badly...each of those 3 placeholder icons will be a mini game. (the horse and sheep randomly shuffle animations and sound effects in the loading scene)

The other picture is one of the "courses" with the dual touchpads(the text stats will be icons). So far I've spent 10 hours and have a full taming system with a dozen animals in the top down level, and 2 mini games roughed out.

What age group would you say I should focus on? Is 5 too young for this? I figured even if they don't do the course correctly they could ride around. Maybe that's fun enough for a kid if I get some decent sound effects.

Attached Thumbnails

  • horseLoading.png
  • horseFPS.png



#4950300 Just a quick question regarding designs

Posted by lmbarns on 18 June 2012 - 10:22 AM

At Ifest I a couple weeks ago in Seattle I listened to some presenters, one was the producer for "Hawken" and the other was the programmer for "Spore".

The Hawken guy said play test constantly, they do it twice a week, even on a larger game. He also emphasized demoing your game to anyone who will try it and getting feedback.

The "Spore" guy said to spend 20% of your time prototyping(but also limit it to that), trying to see what's possible, push the limits. Then as core mechanics are developed he rolled those into how can he make a fun game using his awesome mechanics.

I think good gameplay does evolve and some things that sound awesome on paper actually take away from the experience.


#4947272 Deformable Terrain Game Engines

Posted by lmbarns on 07 June 2012 - 09:48 PM

This was a plugin for Unity http://www.voxelform.com/

Here's a concept video for a refreshing game being built by 2 guys with Unity:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YxBSYit49c8&feature=player_detailpage

It has deformable terrain as well as procedural base creation.


#4946626 Where can I buy a 3D model of a elven mages and elven civilians?

Posted by lmbarns on 05 June 2012 - 08:52 PM

Hard to find fairies and elves. I need both and not much luck so far.

This blender file http://opengameart.org/content/sorceress is rigged but not animated. Not sure if you can convert to your format...most models from Unity are fbx though some sellers give .3ds files which could probably be converted.

But I don't think there are any elves on Unity's store even paid ones. I need like 5-6 elf/fairy models myself.




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