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A Game-Guru specific indy dev blog which covers a weekly report on Game-Guru, lightweight analysis on AAA titles, tutorials, and custom content for the Game-Guru engine.

## This Week in Game-Guru - 8/6/2018

Lots to cover this week!
Official Game-Guru News: Things are really making a lot of progress.

For a long time, the Game-Guru market was fairly stable.  Fairly calm.  We had a crappy boat on fair waters, so to speak.  Sure, the thing had a five horsepower engine, but the seas were as easy as could be.  The past year has been a rocketship to the moon, by comparison.

Each week I'd write up my little report and think "well, that was easy".  I'd hunt down the 1-2 lines of detail about what is going on, put up some stuff from the store and cover the bases.

Then TGC went to github and we never came back.

There have been a whirlwind of changes done over the past year and honestly if you HAD Game-Guru at one point and dismissed it, we're now safely at a point where I can say you should give it another look over.  Literally EVERYTHING is different.

We have dynamic lighting (up to 38 simultaneously, up from 3!).
We have functional PBR.
We have memory issues fixed.
We have modifiable projectiles.
We have quality of life fixes, like needing to press shift-f1/2/3/4 to go to the lightmapper.
We have better weapons systems code.
Almost every single DLC pack has been overhauled.

Seriously, it's a lot to take in.  I highly recommend you give it another go, if you have the time.

Full details on the update can be found here: https://www.thegamecreators.com/post/gameguru-launches-monster-update

The big takeaway here is this isn't the first major update in the past year.  It's more like the third.  Seriously.  There's been a lot of changes and appear to be more in store.

What's New In The Store Recently there was a new kit released, specifically a weapons package.
There's very few times when I have to list something as a 'must buy' but you're insane if you don't pick up this kit.  This ultra-high quality kit is as good as I've seen for Game-Guru and really amplifies your options for game-making.  Some minor changes to the textures and you'll have more than enough to change the game to your liking.  Even if you don't, these are superb weapons.  Check out the demo reel here:

So yeah, that's pretty much the first 'must buy' thing I've seen in a while and frankly I'm not surprised.  I've long maintained that EAI (Errant AI) is the best artist in the Game-Guru community.  This new pack sort of underscores that point.

Not that other artists aren't any good - it's just if you are looking for the absolute best of the best in terms of item/set quality items - he has no real equal (especially since his only real competition has moved on).

Speaking of must buys, there are some other really great items this week on the store.
Notably we have another top shelf artist (BSP) who created some fantastic PBR trees.  If you absolutely must have the best looking trees possible, accept no substitutes!

We've also got a great city pack from Lafette (whose work has been growing leaps and bounds lately) and a very non-ninja oriented set of NPC turtles.  While I can't imagine Gtox is going to see a lot of demand for the turtles, I have no doubt they will be of the same high quality as most of his creatures are.

Random Acts of Creativity I want you all to know that what follows here is.. unusual for me.  I go out of my way to not ever be derisive or condescending but seriously, this can't be helped.

In literally one of the most baffling things I've ever seen, there's something for sale on the TGC store that.. I don't know what it is.
Seriously.
It's called 'Data Bafticomputer'.  It's by a 'Drstewart8klar' though if you google around you'll find he goes by drstewart2klar, 4klar, etc etc.. there's a million aliases.  You also find two books on smashwords.com which are of .. questionable english usage.  I mean I found a read-along on youtube and I literally lost all understanding of what the hell was going on.  My inner Gordon Ramsey is standing around asking "What the $@%! is this pile of *** ****?" So yeah. I think this qualifies, probably, as an act of creativity. I guess. I mean it's got some pretty fantastic ms paint art... it's marked as 'adult content' but there's nothing even indicating why or what this is... and yeah. I mean this is a train wreck spaghetti-plate disaster. It's worth looking at, if only as a cautionary tale as to how not to release a game. So in a more meaningful set of reviews - Bugsy appears that he's done with Direct Action 2! Looks great. His minimalist "high speed low drag" approach to game design is worth taking a peek at - he is a ruthlessly efficient developer and while it's not for everyone it has some serious purpose behind it. Moreover the cutscene work is pretty impressive, considering the limitations of the engine. Youtube video of his work can be found here (Don't want to bog down the page with more than one video, sorry!) Another super interesting one (to me, at least) is Bod (you know, the super prolific free-stuff guy) is making a game and model pack. It's a different style but honestly I'm ok with that - I like seeing the variety in people's artistic visions. This medieval style game has promise. As it is refined it should really clean up well. A very Bod-style game, interesting to see it all put together! Lastly we have Len the Man's 'Cowboy Shooter'. I feel like this is a really good example of what a really concerted new game developer can do with the Game-Guru engine. His patient and steady improvement of his levels is really showing some promise and I truly hope he keeps at it!. Tutorials and Third Party Programs With a lot of third party programs being integrated into the core build due to it being accessible via Github, we have a lot of potential loss for this particular section. There was a great article a few weeks back that if you map over Game-Guru's development, it takes a very similar tract. https://medium.com/@eigenbom/how-to-take-7-years-to-ship-a-beta-4fcfc2428d88 Of course, that's all mute now because we're seeing real progress now that the engine's been opened up. In My Own Works <REDACTED> There's a lot going on right now. Keep your eyes peeled for an old project I never released to make the light of day. Some interesting code, for sure. A while ago I uncovered/developed a really impressive algorithm for creating certain randomization within Lua. I think it's about time I showcase them! Also, as an aside my complete time day and weather kit, along with all skies package is on sale at 14.95 this week! View the full article ## This Week in Game-Guru - 07/23/2018 In an effort to keep things brief but functional here at the blog I'm going to rattle through some of the newest offerings as quickly as I can here. Official Game Guru News On 7/18 a public preview release was unleashed which had a significant amount of updates to it in prep for one of the largest mainstream releases to date. This public preview version features a host of fixes as well as a major lighting overhaul (thank god, bout time!) . Further details/specifics can be found here: https://forum.game-guru.com/thread/219880 Also there was an announcement that the sci-fi pack got some extra goodies for it. And also there was a teaser info drop on the forthcoming update: "In other GameGuru news, we are almost ready to release the next big update, featuring a massive list of additions and changes. The last announcement for the Public Preview build revealed many of these new items, but we have added more to the list since - such as the new ability to append animation data to models and, perhaps even better, add hundreds of dynamic lights into your game scenes. " Now we're talking! Third party tools and tutorials Looks like we have some really great tutorials on the way on using third party utilities to make Game-Guru assets! Random Acts of Creativity Guns of solo is coming along nicely though I think it needs a good bit more work finishing up visuals and refining textures. The basic textures provide a good starting point but I'd personally touch them up in an editor to ensure they really look the part. Still, tthe improved atmospherics are really great and making this move towards a reasonably capable shooter game. Next we have an interesting update by Tarkus on his vaunted 'Savior' series, with the most recent 'Savior v3'. It appears he's begun experimenting with various shaders to give a cartoon or smudgy effect to his graphics. This is a good technique for working with the often disparate textures and models we end up with as GG developers but can't be relied on to completely resolve any inconsistencies. Overall his use of clutter is a little much but it's looking good and I'm hopeful he'll complete the project. It so far looks better than most of the stuff out there and I really think he's on the right track with development - most importantly (he is sticking with the development!). This is an often overlooked but crucial part of gamedev that people who are dabbling in game-making often miss - STICK with your projects over years if you want to be able to release anything - but don't be afraid to call it done if it's not perfect so you can move on to your next learning experience/game. Lastly we see some updates by the Cogwork Chronicles which has added a night zone. This particular change really modifies the dynamic of the quirky but impressive steampunk game and honestly I like the direction it's going. Personally I think the lighting needs a touch more work to really hammer home the feel but overall it's looking fantastic. What's new in the Store Corrosion's back at it with his 'Super Enhanced AI'. I'm... not sure. I mean what he describes sounds like a solid overhaul in the description (from one AI dev to another), but without seeing any ACTUAL video or comparison directly it makes it virtually impossible to actually tell from a buyer's point of view. So Caveat Emptor, friends. I also wanted to mention that I've lowered the prices on ALL of my products going forward. They've been up there for quite some time and I feel it's about time to reflect that as the progress made by others in the community have brought up the overall quality of products on the store. I've brought DOWN my prices to reflect that. So enjoy! Free Stuff Sadly the free stuff area has really dwindled down in terms of models/etc. But there's still some stuff out there. Personally I'm not a fan of taking everyone else's cast offs as they learn, but you can still nab some free stuff if you are in dire need. JPH Games has put out a few items for download here: https://forum.game-guru.com/thread/219734#msg2603156 Though not to a standard I'd personally use in my projects, it could still find a home so definitely take a look. More importantly though over on the Lua scripting area, we have several major updated pieces of code that are definitely worth grabbing: Amenmoses updated Dvader's body code: https://forum.game-guru.com/thread/219891 Amenmoses (a few weeks ago, I missed it) released a text based sprite library. Really solid stuff, as usual! https://forum.game-guru.com/thread/219811 In My Own Works While the constant updating of Game-Guru has been fantastic from a developer standpoint, it's been HELL from a writer's standpoint. I have entire sections that have to be rewritten, thrown out, or updated. It's been a nightmare in that respect and I'm looking forward to when people are resting on their laurels for a bit so I can catch a moment to breathe. I'll get there though. I just need to wait until a major release and then unload all the writing I can on the book. View the full article ## This Week in Game-Guru - 7/16/2018 I'll be the first to admit I've been overwhelmed by life and a bit burned out on Game-Guru. This has coupled to a sort of fallout with doing this blog, which I will have to start making some changes to to make it more functional from my standpoint. At least, in the near term. I will try dropping the 'whats new in the store' as this section alone takes inordinate amounts of time for this blog. Game-Guru Official News: https://www.thegamecreators.com/post/gameguru-mega-pack-1-dlc-updated-3 Game-Guru continues their march forward with Github-powered updates. It's producing a lot more over this last year than it's done in the last 4 or so, so it's a lot to keep up with. The latest batch of updates resolved the following: "Back in the main product, we continue to improve existing features as much as adding new ones, specifically an improvement to the depth buffer which controls the fidelity of visuals when viewing objects at a distance. In the previous update, some camera distance settings could lower the resolution of the depth buffer causing z-artifacts, which has now been solved by a higher quality depth map. We'll continue to upgrade more entities to PBR assets in the background, and in the meantime, if you want to get your hands on the GameGuru Mega Pack 1 DLC, it's currently on promotion right now:" However in addition to materials updates for existing 'mega packs' and the addition of a new construction pack, there's also engine-based updates which are pretty regular now. I wish they'd produce patch notes, however, to help make my job curating it a bit easier as there's simply too much to follow at any given time. Regardless, it's still coming along nicely. There's also this gem: https://forum.game-guru.com/thread/219846 With Preben adding some very big updates to the lighting system. I've also heard that others are adding 'panther AI' to the game engine as well. What's new in the store: Check it for yourself this week :P More seriously though this is the most stand-out item of the last few weeks - pasquill's shipping containers set. Very well priced, very high quality. For four dollars, you can't beat that. Also - I've updated the pricing on my own store items, significantly reducing MANY of the cost of packs as they stand. Some are down 15-75% in cost. Check out the packs here today! https://www.tgcstore.net/artist/190502/packs FREE STUFF Notably I found this awesome addition: https://forum.game-guru.com/thread/219812 A free gun, by Bugsy! Really awesome stuff. THIRD PARTY PROGRAMS Ok so.. yeah. This one I'll circle back to. There's literally too much to go over and I've already spent hours aggregating a lot of this information. RANDOM ACTS OF CREATIVITY Some new games have been released. It's nice to see DK productions re-working Hunted: A Step too far along with some hush hush stuff I was given some early teasers on. Bugsy's been especially active lately, with a lot of testing and updates: https://forum.game-guru.com/thread/219234?page=2 Check out that skyline! A cartoony western by Slaur3n - https://forum.game-guru.com/thread/217684 IN MY OWN WORKS Ehhhhh. Don't make me talk about this. I'm obviously lagging on this. But mostly I need to get off my ass and start working on work-related things for Game-Guru. View the full article ## These Weeks (Bi-Weekly) in Game-Guru - 06/18/2018 So as you've noticed, I've switched to a bi-weekly update system. This is to lessen the load on me, which has grown tremendously over the past few months. I have simply too many obligations to attend to to do this consistently and as such, this is the result. Good news though - we're in a slow period so there's not a significant amount of content to curate anyways. So let's get on with it. OFFICIAL GAME-GURU NEWS Not a lot I can find here. Seems like most of the news is done by the community as of current. Work continues towards refining PBR's output and the engine in general. NEW ITEMS IN THE STORE My least favorite section to review because there's simply too much. Here's some pictures: So the rundown: There's some good stuff by M Stockton, Wolf, Campana Productions (love the butterflies and crystal cave stuff), and more. I think I'll be picking up the gun supplies soon enough from MStockton. Looks great and at 2.50 sale price - that's a steal. Pick it up here: https://www.tgcstore.net/pack/11032 THIRD PARTY TOOLS & TUTORIALS You'll notice the addition of '& tutorials'. I am adding this because I want to ensure that the really noteworthy tutorials get encapsulated along with interesting third party tools. And frankly, I already have too many subheadings. An interesting visual scripting framework. My son, who uses MIT's scratch, will love this. https://forum.game-guru.com/thread/219760 A really great tutorial by DK (DuchenKuke) on how to do lightmapping. A must watch! https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=d6-7m6QLQMA Work has begun by BOTR (Bored Of The Rings) of making his heightmap import tool an integrated package in Game-Guru on the GitHub source. https://forum.game-guru.com/thread/218876?page=4#msg2601811 Graphix made a quixel (graphic tool) script for GG: https://forum.game-guru.com/thread/219569 ALERT-EMERGENCY-ALERT - AMENMOSES RELEASED A PHYSICS LIBRARY! GET IT HERE: https://forum.game-guru.com/thread/219758 FREE STUFF Free Motorcycle Helmet by Bod: https://forum.game-guru.com/thread/215012?page=17#msg2601335 Free monitor tables by Wolf: https://forum.game-guru.com/thread/219741 Free rubber boat by GraphiX: https://forum.game-guru.com/thread/217932?page=11#msg2601597 RANDOM ACTS OF CREATIVITY Currently there's a lot of really good work going on in the community by committed members. I recommend following: Acythian, by Wolf: https://forum.game-guru.com/thread/211124/newest Direct Action 2, by Bugsy: https://forum.game-guru.com/thread/219234?page=1#msg2600578 Into the Ice, by Ertlov: https://forum.game-guru.com/thread/206985 Welcome to Manchester, by MooKai wins the honor of getting a screencap put in my blog this week. What fantastic work using very elementary components of GameGuru: You can learn more about WoM here: https://forum.game-guru.com/thread/219645?page=1#msg2601704 Lots of really good stuff here. Still waiting on an update by Dimoxinil for his 'Space Losers' game, which should really be honestly one of the 'best of the best' games made by Game-Guru upon release. IN MY OWN WORKS. I'll admit, I've allowed a lot of my "Battletech: A Time of War" pen and paper (roll20.net, actually) campaign to preoccupy me, but it's served as a valuable creative writing tool so I can't fault it, too much. The book is coming along slowly. I'm dedicating a few hours each week to getting a couple of thousand words done, so it's progressing at the proper pace. Currently I'm working on a segment discussing 'building your first game' - simply put priorities and configurations. This chapter already has a few thousand words but is getting a second pass to really expand on it. View the full article ## These Weeks in Game Guru - 06-05-2018 Ok, I'll admit, I've been busy. Too busy. Lots of nickel and dime stuff with life and it's held me up, significantly with this type of work. I will neither confirm nor deny my Battletech pen and paper RPG campaign has also eaten up many hours of my life more than I thought it would. Regardless I'm here to give you some interesting news on the Game-Guru front. I may switch this to a bi-weekly publication. What are your thoughts on this? Anyone have any preference? It's a lot of work for me to do weekly, so bi-weekly might be just the ticket. OFFICIAL GAME GURU NEWS: There's an update which was pushed out, today, specifically addressing some changes to the fantasy DLC pack as more PBR assets got updated. It appears Lee's FINALLY getting around to the long-standing issue of updating the weaponry to allow more than just a simple fireball attack. He wants to add ice and poison attacks! https://www.thegamecreators.com/post/gameguru-fantasy-pack-dlc-update Why this is important is because the Game Engine specifically is limited with respect to projectile weapons and decals (both of which are used for the fireball effect in the fantasy pack). And by limited, I mean one. You can only have that ONE simple object and any further modification requires a complete redo of the files involved. I know, I've done it. It's a pain. So adding functionality will mean adding the ability to have more than one simple hardcoded weapon (which was a cheap hack, IMO) and is a big deal. I for one am looking forward to it! WHAT'S NEW IN THE STORE: Lots of stuff,seriously. Too much for me to cover. I will go quickly though: Pasquill has made a set of what looks like 1980'sish ford bronco's in many different colors, shapes, sizes, etc. It's a good kit but a little overpriced, by my estimate. I mean in some cases it's literally a recolor and I can't justify spending the same price on one as I do on the other. Thankfully he's got a pack put to it in a much better spot financially. Good times. There's also a new kit by Tazman who is slowly sharpening up his products with the new PBR materials. I for one think he's come a long way and really hope he continues to grow as his kits have always held a lot of potential. There's some other stuff in there. Most interesting, in my opinion is the stuff by M Stockton who continues to deliver new and interesting items. I particularly like the reloader's bench (reminds me of many musty days in my father and stepfather's respective basements making bullets for competition or hunting) model. Very nice work indeed! FREE STUFF: THIRD PARTY APPLICATIONS: RANDOM ACTS OF CREATIVITY: This one is one that is a good 'must look at' - it highlights some new work by MooKai on the unique title 'Welcome to Manchester'. What's impressive is the use of PBR assets in a functional way along with a good lighting setup. See the video for below: A user on discord named PEK put up some really solid looking screenshots as well from a Game Guru game that I have no name for: We're in a good time, where people can actually start putting together really solid projects right out of the gate with minimum experience - just like was originally intended. There's still some major faults that hopefully some donations and the github crew can solve (such as the AI system needing some serious reworking). IN MY OWN WORKS: I have a significant amount of catching up to do this month to meet my targets. Thankfully I'm setting my word count very aggressively to help keep myself on track for my writing and I know I can bust out 15-20k words this month if I really buckle down and do it. The game itself which will sidecar will need some additional love as well since there's a significant amount of assets that still are outstanding. View the full article ## This Week in Game-Guru - 05/21/2018 Official Game-Guru News: So there's a lot of traffic at this point on Game-Guru. Lots of bugs being squashed. Looks like lighting is getting looked at, specifically an SDK called 'enlighten' as a possible solution. In the meantime there's a host of new functions on the github iteration of Game-Guru that are lighting related. Looks like I might need to go make an Advanced lighting kit :) ... Also in official news there apparently progress being made on an underwater state for the player, which should really open up the gates as to how water is handled. Lastly it appears that mega pack 3 has gotten more PBR assets - the roofs really pop with the shine they have now! Check it out here: https://www.thegamecreators.com/post/gameguru-mega-pack-3-dlc-update-2 New Products On The Store: So a few new things available. I'm really digging these complex and ornately textured lamps by Mad Lobster. Reliquia has made some absolutely amazing skies which you should absolutely take a look at. I've noticed that the quality on campana production's models has gone up, check out this cow skull! And lastly Shadow Man appears to continue to be on his building-making rampage. Free Stuff: Good lord, there's a crateload. https://forum.game-guru.com/thread/219680 - A must have ... Reliquia has put 16 free zombies up! https://forum.game-guru.com/thread/219692 - Lafette II has put up two zombie kids and some desert props. Be aware that having shootable children may violate local laws (Notably in Germany). Caveat Emptor. https://forum.game-guru.com/thread/219523 - Here's a good AI script for the soldier, a wandering type script. So from here, I'm going to stop and just sort of separate things so you can really get a sense of how important these next two are. https://forum.game-guru.com/thread/215012?page=16#msg2600572 - This has been a Long, LONG time coming. Amenmoses and Bod have teamed up to make a really awesome vehicle script for a truck - this looks and feels awesome. https://forum.game-guru.com/thread/219628 - Honkeyboy has added his own flavor to the drivable vehicle scene with this racing bike script! Those two should keep you busy for a while. Amazing stuff, truly. Looks like I owe someone a prize from my bounty board! Third Party Tools: I'm working on the notepad++ update. It's a lot of work because they keep making updates over at github! But it's coming along. There's a LOT of XML to pour through and verify/cross check. Random Acts of Creativity: https://forum.game-guru.com/thread/219296?page=1#msg2600665 - DK's latest update in his wasteland saga. Looks good though personally I gave him the following input on discord: "So observations @Duchenkuke for your test #3 - 1) I don't like the new coloring. There's not enough contrast. It looks too black, white, grey, and drab. Sorry! 2) The inventory looks easy to use but I'd really work on cleaning up the interface elements. Maybe use a color other than white (maybe a white-orange?), some asymmetrically sized boxes, etc. 3) The vehicle was awesome. What kidney do I have to give you so I can build a truck driving game for my son? Overall though your level design looks fantastic. Your use of clutter is second to none and honestly aside from the coloration issues I'd say you're coming along really well." In my own works: I'm continuing to procure more items and art for the book's sidecar modules. It's a lot of headache but at the same time there's a big payoff for those who will purchase by getting a combination of high quality free, store, and exclusive assets. View the full article ## This Week in Game-Guru - 05/14/2018 Official Game-Guru News: Nothing new here. Just some AppGameKit Game-Guru Loader updates. I don't personally use either products so it's not particularly relevant to me. New Products On The Store: There's not a lot this week after last week's frenzy. As you can see, not much. Some new animals, skies, and buildings. Unfortunately none of this is particularly stand-out to me. Free Stuff: HonkeyBoy has given some nice looking free bamboo models: CLICK HERE JPH Games made a tunnel PBR pack - I don't really know if I like the texturing on it but some might find some use: CLICK HERE Some cool little Cacti by Lafette II: CLICK HERE Some free textures (always useful, IMO) here: CLICK HERE A really excellent liquor/beer bottle from GraPhiX: CLICK HERE Third Party Tools: There's a free HUD generator WIP worth looking at: CLICK HERE Random Acts of Creativity: So Bugsy has updated Direct Action II's screenshots in his WIP thread and WOW, looks great. Here's one to whet your appetite: I'd show a few but there's like 12 or so so just check it out with this link instead: https://forum.game-guru.com/thread/219234?page=1#msg2597438 Next up we have an update video from DuchenKuke which really shows the extent of his game's state. It's fairly impressive and worth a look! In My Own Works: Book progress is slow, but that's ok. I simply have a lot of obligations around this time of year. As the summer heats up, my book writing will too :) Picked up a few gems to add though so I'm eager to dump some time into getting that book pounded out, hopefully another 30k words in the next two months. As it stands, I'm sitting at 55k words, which is no small accomplishment, considering the end goal is around 120k My Lua Notepad++ API needs an update too. Maybe I'll get to that in the next few weeks. I'll admit I've been dumping most of my creative energies into designing my Battletech: A Time of War RPG campaign. We're prepping for Session 0 (Character Creation) and Session 1 (first play through my custom campaign) and it's been invigorating. It's interesting to bring my video game design philosophies to the pen and paper rpg domain. Lastly my Advanced Time of Day and Weather system and all Skies pack is on sale this week for 17.99 (normal price 24.99!) View the full article ## This Week in Game-Guru - 05/07/18 Been remarkably bouncing between different types of colds this week, currently dealing with a chest cold. It's been a special form of hell for about 7 days now. So with that, here's your 'Game-Guru in a nutshell' for this week. Game-Guru News Nothing particularly new but it appears there's a lot of feature fixes/updates on the issues tracker at GitHub so we'll probably see some forward motion again and soon. Don't forget to help donate if you want to speed along development: https://www.thegamecreators.com/donate/project/1721 New Items on the Store Tarkus remastered his 'Desolation' Audio kit: https://www.tgcstore.net/pack/11026 Alfredx10 (An old hat from the FPSC days) put up a tile kit, presumably for the EBE? https://www.tgcstore.net/pack/11025 Tazman put up a gothic furniture pack with PBR textures: https://www.tgcstore.net/pack/11023 We also have these awesome single individual items available for download on the store now: I'm really liking the new stuff from 'that model guy' though all of these look really useful! Free Stuff Want to go bowling in game-guru? Check this out: Click Here Graphix made a 'by request' birthday cake for GG that looks damn good: Click Here Some nice free cars I missed by BOD (PBR): Civilian edition Police edition Third Party Programs No news that I'm aware of. Random Acts of Creativity This week's must-see screenshots are from DuchenKuke (of course!): I mean aside from a little heavy-handedness on the lens flares, WOW. Great work DK! Len the man is continuing his work on his Wild-West shooter, which I'm happy to see! And Cybernessence added a pretty sweet looking new NPC here: https://forum.game-guru.com/thread/213870?page=4#msg2600203 In my own Works So in my own stuff, I am happy to say I've secured a few more goodies for the book release sidecar products including some weapons and products from BSP! This is a huge win for those looking to purchase my book. I really want to give a big value to anyone who does invest in it when it becomes available early 2019. I'm going to have demo maps, games, breakdowns, custom assets, free assets, you name it. Lots of good stuff going into the book for you, the readers! The book itself is coming along. I just slogged through my EBE tutorial section which was admittedly less fun than I'd like. I will undoubtedly be revisiting that section again, but thems the breaks! Till next week! View the full article ## This Week in Game-Guru - 04/30/2018 OFFICIAL GAME-GURU NEWS: Game-Guru has officially updated! Queue the fireworks, beer, and cheers people! It's the full DX11 release with all the associated Github and PP releases that we've come to know, love, and sometimes despise. This represents a huge departure for Game-Guru and as such you will want to really give your stuff a thorough once-over before you test. In the meantime we have a new pack to help celebrate, with full PBR models - https://www.thegamecreators.com/post/gameguru-construction-site-pack-released There's some really nice looking stuff in those kits so give em a look! NEW PRODUCTS IN THE STORE: The store has a massive smattering of new products this week and while many are great (nice to see Tazman experimenting with PBR, for instance!) - I have to say BSP shattered expectations with some damn fine looking stuff. As you can see these are some top shelf products! There's also some really good stuff by GraPhiX, that model guy, and relative newcomer mechanic. Pasquill has also added some new cars, which are always worth a look. These appear to be the first PBR enabled vehicles so give them a double take! I also have to chime in that I love Shadow Man's style. So I follow him on the store (amongst others) and while he's not a super-prolific author his stuff is top notch and worth a look if you're into cyberpunk/sci-fi/modern styles. Of course most of these are available in well priced packs so spend wisely: FREE STUFF: Not much going on here, but we already have lots of nice new shinies to play with so let's hold off either way for next week! THIRD PARTY TOOLS: The latest version of the Heightmap 2 GG program is out and available for download here: https://forum.game-guru.com/thread/218876?page=3#msg2599966 RANDOM ACTS OF CREATIVITY: Cybernessence did a great job with some coolscripting in his upcoming game 'The Cogwheel Chronicles'. That's the kind of inventive stuff that keeps people interested in your product, people. IN MY OWN WORKS: My own products will need a thorough 'going over' for the latest revision of Game-Guru. I will need to take some time this week to set aside and test it thoroughly then bug-fix whatever new problems cropped up from the latest revision. The book continues to slog along though I literally got NOTHING done due to my day job's total focus last week along with my family getting sick upon my return. Keep an eye out here for more updates. If you are encountering any problems with the Time of Day and Weather system please let me know ASAP via this blog or via the ticket system on http://en.tgcstore.net View the full article ## This Week in Game-Guru - 4/23/2018 I don't have a lot of time this week, regrettably. As mentioned previously this is when my real day job reaches it's crescendo and so I'm going to throw together something for this week and maybe post something more detailed later this week. Thanks for bearing with me! Game-Guru News: Work continues on people trying to find errors and problems in the latest public preview. Nothing really stand-out, just testing, testing and more testing! What's New in The Store: This stuff: I really like TMG's diner pack - I'm interested in some nice PBR screenshots. Gtox is continuing to make animals and Ken Charles Long is making new and improved buildings. His previous work was good but since he's upgraded his tools it's really come a long way! Third Party Tools: Nada. Sorry can't dig too deep. Free Stuff: Sorry guys, this one is going to have to wait. It usually takes an inordinate amount of time to do and I can't afford that right now. Random Acts of Creativity: A few minor updates on the forums here: https://forum.game-guru.com/thread/219549 - an update to Tarkus1971's urban exploration game https://forum.game-guru.com/thread/219588 - an interesting, fairly well done horror game But of particular note, I missed the update screenshots to Wolf's shooter Acythian which look PHENOMENAL! That is some top shelf stuff, visually. Nicely done Wolf! In My Own Works: Work continues on my book though it's taking a while. I'm hoping to get a few thousand words pounded out this week as I am going to have a lot of hours doing nothing otherwise. View the full article ## This Week in Game Guru - 4/16/2018 Official Game-Guru News: I really dig the constant release cycle we're seeing from Game-Guru and TGC now that it's gone to GitHub. Here are the full details on the 04.14.18 PP (Public Preview) release available on steam: https://forum.game-guru.com/thread/219574 This one seems to be more of a bugfix/legacy components fix and users are reporting good results. That means we're inching closer to a production stable build. There's also some good PBR work being done on Mega Pack 2 (one of my favorites) - get the info here: https://www.game-guru.com/news-post/gameguru-mega-pack-2-dlc-update New Products On The Store: Not a lot going on but some interesting stuff. GraPhix continues his PBR work with a nice looking bus stop. One thing that stands out is that the glass isn't suffering that awful 'everything past the second pane gets deleted' bug so it should work flawlessly by the look of it. There's a house set if you're interested by relative newcomer 'Homewreckers studio' and some very nice snow decals by RoseMadder (I always love innovative uses of the decal system). Lastly there's a Randomized Sound System by Corrosion, who continues his utility scripting. This particular one looks really useful and I might consider getting it myself. Definitely give it a view! Free Stuff: Honkeyboy has some free mechs (WOO!) here: https://forum.game-guru.com/thread/219571 Bod has revamped his old lighthouses (I'm super excited about this): https://forum.game-guru.com/thread/215012?page=16#msg2599005 JPH-Games keeps adding to his "Industrial PBR pack": https://forum.game-guru.com/thread/219529#msg2599080 Graphix has honestly got too much for me to list. See his megathread here: https://forum.game-guru.com/thread/217932?page=10 Third Party: There's a pretty big update for AGK but that's really only useful for people using GG Loader, at least from this blog's standpoint. Beyond that, apologies but I haven't sifted through the mountains of posts on the forum about updates. Suffice it to say we should expect a lot of integration of utilities in the near future into GG public releases. Random Acts of Creativity: So this is the area I'm *MOST* excited about. We have two mega updates here that need some attention. Firstly, of course, is Dimoxinil's "Space Losers". This game continues it's march towards completion and there's also a recipe for cooking eggs buried in there? That's definitely a new one. He's added a savegame feature, day/night transition, a friendly NPC, and a village. Details here: https://forum.game-guru.com/thread/217908?page=4#msg2599091 Next I noticed on the Game-Guru Discord (Yes, that is a thing - it can be found here: https://discordapp.com/channels/332652927082692609/332652927082692609 ) That DuchenKuke had posted a pretty awesome update and test video for his upcoming fallout/STALKER style game. You can watch that video here (highly recommended as it's informative just in the sense of learning how to use terrain effectively): This is absolutely gorgeous and he's done a great job. My comments in full can be found at the video. In My Own Works: Ugh. Don't remind me that I have more work to do. I added about 3000 words last week to my book, which is pushing 145 pages now, unformatted. There is a ton of extra work to do. View the full article ## This Week in Game-Guru - 4/9/2018 Apologies for last week. I missed the update completely as my day job as Chief Linux Systems Engineer is reaching it's yearly crescendo (culminating in early May) and so I'm finding myself exceptionally busy, compared to what I would only term the 'off season' where it's much easier to focus on secondary tasks, which unfortunately this blog falls into. As such you may notice for a few weeks a reduced focus on this blog but I promise you it will return as soon as I can steadily manage it. I'd like to give a quick shout-out to Graphix for a freebie he sent me (unsolicited) as thanks for the blog. Give his products a look here - he's been doing some great things with the new PBR system. OFFICIAL GAME-GURU NEWS: Not sure what I can say here. Work continues, Preben is doing a lot of fantastic things with the shaders for DX11 but there's some serious issues that are still being worked on. So as such we're stuck with a more updated public preview edition but hopefully will see movement forward towards a stable 'release' sometime soon. To be sure, this is not the upgrade path I'd have chosen if I were Lee. NEW PRODUCTS IN THE STORE: Teabone (the king of clutter objects, IMO) has released a few new pieces of high quality clutter objects, notably some paintings. There's also some interesting medieval horror objects by Lafette that literally the first words out of my mouth were (and I quote): "Wow! That's.. really really nice. I mean that's absolutely top shelf stuff." And the best part is? They're EXTREMELY WELL PRICED. I mean the entire pack is something like 7 dollars, US. This is something on the level of Wizard of ID level of quality, for a fraction of the price. Definitely worth the investment. FREE STUFF: There's a fairly large body of 'free stuff' to go through: First of all, Bod has made some new PBR remakes of his old stuff that look great! Second we have Lafette (same one as above) making some 'free little mountains' which honestly are fantastic! I hope to be able to include them with my book! Thirdly we have a 'free PBR industrial pack' by JPH Games. Here's a script for making a MOHAA (Medal of Honor, Allied Assault man I haven't played that game in a lonnnng time) style bomb script: https://forum.game-guru.com/thread/219519 And lastly there's a pretty great script set of RPG style functions. All in all, a pretty solid week for freebies! THIRD PARTY TOOLS: Some news: The Heightmap Importation tool is being integrated into the GitHub source - eventually! Still, this is a huge bit of news and I'm excited to see it finally getting it's day in the sun. Also GG loader by Preben has gotten another update of some underwater shaders. That guy has a lot of free time. I don't know how he does it. RANDOM ACTS OF CREATIVITY: There's too much to cover (cries quietly)...*takes a deep breath* Bugsy added cubemapping to some objects in his Redacted2 shooter - https://forum.game-guru.com/thread/216903?page=3#msg2595699 Murmia, that weird game by 'beanz' is coming along nicely: https://forum.game-guru.com/thread/218909?page=1#msg2597459 Death House of Barker Creek by new creator 'HellreaperX' looks like a solid first attempt: https://forum.game-guru.com/thread/219542 Urban Explorer by Tarkus1971 looks promising but needs some fine tuning: https://forum.game-guru.com/thread/219549 Lastly there's a really fantastic update by Cybernessence that needs to be seen to be believed for his Cogwheel Chronicles masterwork. His day night transitions are looking good! https://forum.game-guru.com/thread/213870?page=4 IN MY OWN WORKS: The book is making steady progress though a lot of the lower hanging fruit is taken. One interesting tidbit I posted online which readers of this blog might find interesting is my analysis of what's wrong with using the base AI without a navigation mesh for it: https://forum.game-guru.com/thread/219508#msg2598602 Check it out. I'll discuss it in more depth in the book, by a large margin. View the full article ## This week in Game-Guru - 3/26/2018 (Released 27th) Official Game-Guru News: This past week marks the latest release of the public preview updates, specifically bringing us to a 3rd major update with PP. The full list of commits are available here: https://github.com/TheGameCreators/GameGuruRepo/commits/master There's a lot of good stuff in there ranging from updates to scripts to making sky a scriptable change via Lua. Most importantly of course work continues on updating fixes for broken default items. I personally noticed my rain system and some other weather effect systems I have available on my Advanced Time of Day and Weather system aren't functioning normally. I'll have an update for that as soon as I can but unfortunately am bombarded with my day job's work right now. For now play around with the newest update and make sure you are submitting problems via the issue tracker here: https://github.com/TheGameCreators/GameGuruRepo/issues It appears the Fantasy Pack is including more character creation gear, notably headgear for male/female models. This is a welcome improvement over a system that has a lot of underused potential. New Products on the Store: Nothing really new here. Some minor scripting items, a swing set, and some music. At this point though, nothing to really write home about unless you need some of this stuff. Expect more of an uptick during the summer months, especially after PP goes live. Free Stuff: Graphix continues exercising his increased prowess with 3D models. There's some miscellaneous free items here: https://forum.game-guru.com/thread/217932?page=9 Lafayette II put up a free tree here: https://forum.game-guru.com/thread/219495 Third Party Tools: Looks like BOTR has finally started to settle back into regular daily life after having his first little one and has begun working on his suite of third party programs. Notably work has been done on his DBO/.X data importer. https://forum.game-guru.com/thread/219495 Random Acts of Creativity: *crickets*. No real updates here to write home about. More next week, maybe. I guess people are prepping for Easter or winding down from a long winter. In My Own Works: My book has slowed down; I'm at 50,000 words or so but having to rewrite a segment which I was borrowing too heavily from my blog cost me about a weeks worth of writing. I am re-writing it from the ground up and that's unfortunately a costly affair. Overall I'm on track for being in 1st-2nd draft territory by September (which is my personal goal). Onwards and upwards! View the full article ## Weekly report delayed until tomorrow Apologies but there's a lot going on which is preventing me from dealing with putting up a rather lengthy post about what's new in the Game-Guru world this week. I will have one for you all tomorrow though! Lots of new changes that need discussed so definitely make sure you check in! View the full article ## This Week in Game-Guru - 3/19/2018 Welcome to another weekly wrap-up on all things Game-Guru. Things continue to shape up post-public preview v2 and we're seeing most of the artists develop a workflow around PBR assets which really add a level of depth and dimension pretty far beyond what Game-Guru has been known to do. Official Game-Guru News: Game-Guru now has a donation link for 3rd party development. It's about time! Remember, these monies won't go towards Lee & Company. It will actually go for people who are doing contracted work outside of TheGameCreators to fix up long-standing issues in Game-Guru. I've already put a few bucks towards it and encourage you to do the same to help reward those who are really getting this project moving again! In other news, the Easter DLC is also free so grab it while it lasts! It's also got some new models added so existing owners of it who bought it last year should have that in their inventory as well. Beyond that, work continues on the pending 'regular' release of Game-Guru. Bear in mind beyond public preview editions, we have seen NO real updates to Game-Guru since May of last year. That's quite a long time to wait. So I think a lot of us are really hoping to see something magical though I think it's fair to expect we'll run into some snags as well. Hopefully Lee and team are agile after the fact and fix whatever whack-a-mole bugs pop up. New Products on the Store: This week we're starting to see the current crop of PBR related assets coming forward as more and more artists get used to working with the new medium. Some of this stuff looks really great! Most, if not all of these are PBR enabled. I noticed Mad Lobster Workshop's Mad Scientist Lair now has a second 'kit' to it which is an 'essentials/lite' pack. I love this brain in a jar, Mad Lobster! This is a good idea to corral the ever-expanding inventory and help break it out though I still would have made pack 1, 2, 3 instead of his method. To each their own though. Graphix's work on a playground set is really turning out nice, about time for us to get an updated one. I have been using an older one for years and it's about time to update. Finally there's this way, way, way overpriced toilet from newcomer HomeWreckers Studio. I mean I get it, everyone needs a good quality toilet for their games. For the price though he's going to find it a struggle to sell this piece. Probably. My recommendation would be to offer it significantly reduced by itself (say$3.50) or include it much reduced as part of a pack.

Free Stuff: This week there's not a lot going on.  I will say though Bod has been working on updating his assets for PBR and they look phenomenal.

Though word in the winds is that a fix is coming to PP that will render a lot of his updates unnecessary.

Beyond that we see some new stuff from Graphix (notably a cabinet) and  some free music from the probably very-hard to pronounce "eluukkanen".

Third Party Tools:
This week we got to see a glimpse of something REALLY cool.  A third party tool called "Game Launcher Creator".  This program really allows some impressive things such as live updates, notifications, a WYSIWYG editor, and more.   You can find info on it here: https://forum.game-guru.com/thread/219455 ... lots of potential in this one.

Someone found a new PBR tool: https://forum.game-guru.com/thread/219467

Random Acts of Creativity:

This week Bugsy put up some new screenies of 'Direct Action 2' and it looks great.
He's really getting a handle on GG's lighting and it shows:
Great use of a dynamic (RED) light with lots of soft blue static lights. Also it's nice to see 'Len the Man' still working on his cowboy shooter game.

In my own works:
Sort of a lazy week for me.  I have a lot of life stuff going on.  Lately I've been playing Galaxy on Fire 3 on iphone, World of Tanks Blitz (iphone) and also Tera had an event for Male Brawler classes this weekend .. and I've been a founder in that since the dawn of time.  So not much going on.  Pounded out a few thousand words on the book.  Books are a process of constantly grinding out more material.  I did obtain licensure for a few more assets so that's coming along nicely.  I now have some custom models worth noting and am looking forward to revealing them as time goes on!

Eventually the book will come with:
A full set of level-building supplies (buildings, clutter objects)
A custom character (enemy/npc)
Custom Character Creator assets
Custom weapons and more!

I'm still looking for qualified artists.  Let me know if you have an interest in having some of your work included!

## Game-Guru and Female Gamers

My wife is a hardcore female gamer.  She maintains a fairly popular YouTube channel (https://www.youtube.com/user/Mmogurl).  While I cannot speak for her directly, I will note some observations about her experiences with gaming, being a woman, and gamedev.

You see, she's been a long time horror fan.  I mean long time; as long or longer than I've known her.
She loves Silent Hill; she maintained a pretty high traffic website back in the early 2000's on it.  It crushed her to see Silent Hills (she's not a Koijima fangirl).  It reduced her to rubble when she saw him quit, destroy all existing progress on it, and essentially cause a hard reset for the franchise.  The look in her eyes when I told her it'd be 4 more years from that point before she'd see another SH game was difficult indeed.

So in her mind, she wants to make her OWN horror game.  To her credit (reasons like this are why I married the woman) she put her money where her mouth was and started learning Unity and Unreal.  She's made some impressive stuff for someone with no training in any formal capacity and no real background in GameDev.

She however sees my work in Game-Guru and is interested.  Unfortunately there are literally almost no female models to work with on the store.  She knows I'm writing a book on Game-Guru and have tons of experience with the system - but there's simply nothing there to pull her in for her own projects.

So .. just a little suggestion for developers reading this - please add some female-friendly stuff to the store - it might help attract at least one new buyer I can think of!

## This Week in Game-Guru: 03/12/2018

I'm going to condense my weekly report this week significantly as there's not a lot going on currently. I'm also renaming "Engine Update Progress Report" to "Official Game-Guru News"

Official Game-Guru News:
Do the survey for a chance to win $100 from thegamecreators: https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSczMURUbCOYDaRxMpxmQjq2RpSAz09LMkQEwSuepq8nXb1N9g/viewform New products in the store: More trees from M2design... interestingly they are PBR assets. More clutter items (batteries) from Teabone A completely modular house kit of.. very similar looking houses from a new guy named 'homewrecker studios'. Anyone else see the irony of him selling houses on the store? More PBR assets from Mad Lobster A pretty clever Ricochet script kit from Mstockton Free Stuff: Graphix put together a nice punching bag: here Nothing else going on, seriously. Third Party Tools: There's a inventory system here that I missed last week: here Looks like a solid WIP. Random Acts of Creativity: The bizarre but intriguing title "Visit to Murmia" is getting some new updates. I'm curious about this one but without a plot (by the creators own admission) it's going to be a hard sell as a completed work. In my own works: Still grinding out this book. I'm about 1/3rd through the first rough draft and not quite to the territory where it's a slog. Life is hitting me hard right now though so I'm having trouble putting words to paper when I'm dealing with the constant difficulty of living in my own head. Soon enough though the fog will clear and I'll move forward again with my usual aplomb. For now, I'm sitting just over 40,000 words of a projected 120,000. View the full article ## Some forward progress worth reporting! Just a quick little update post: I've got a source for my Legal, Marketing and Distribution catch-all chapter that's been very forthcoming. He's one of the premier artists and creators in the Game-Guru community who has actually had good success so it's important to me to get his details on how he was able to achieve that. I also contacted a former artist in the Game Guru community who has been kind enough to provide me with my first batch of art for my book. This custom art is something he had already created but since he's done with Game-Guru he'll allow me to distribute it with the book freely :). So thanks Mio! I am still looking for more artists and providers. I don't have a lot to offer at this point so if you're interested in helping out (and a place in the acknowledgements section) let me know! View the full article ## This week in Game-Guru - 03/05/2018 Just a reminder that I spend a few hours on this site every week and new subs are appreciated greatly. I don't make a cent on it and just want to keep interest in Game-Guru alive so spread the word and use the subscribe link on the right for more expert analysis and weekly reports :) ENGINE UPDATE PROGRESS REPORT I think it's fair to say we've been waiting a while for a real update. Public Preview 2 is out and we've had some time to evaluate it. It's not as bad as the first public preview, in my opinion, but it still has miles to go as evidenced by the github repo issues log: https://github.com/TheGameCreators/GameGuruRepo/issues This is disturbing because I think when we started down this road to DX11 we never expected we'd be sitting on the same FUNCTIONAL stable version of Game-Guru for nearly a year. We're going on 10 months now since the last real update to Game-Guru. I cannot understand why the decision was made to not at least offer simple proven bugfixes to the base DX9 edition. I cannot also understand why the DX11 edition wasn't spun off into a separate purchase option but that's just me being my usual Capitalist pig self. NEW PRODUCTS IN THE STORE My LightKit is on sale this week for$2 USD: https://www.tgcstore.net/product/30936
This week can be boiled down to two distinct updates of new content:

First - we have a whole western themed town, which is a fantastic addition to the store and really fits a pretty empty niche.

This is just a fraction of the immense asset list.
On top of that, it has a significant degree of quality that makes it worth the $19.99 pack price being asked. The kit includes around 80 models in varying levels of quality from 100 to 6000 polys with one outlier in the 9000+ range. Some of the models have an extremely simple design but the texturing is expertly done. For this guy, that's hugely important. The artist Sula has the pack available on the store here: https://www.tgcstore.net/pack/11009 Second we have a sort of 'dueling tree competition' between m2design and honkeyboy. I'm not sure why, but both of them have submitted trees to the store for your perusal. There's already a lot of trees on the store but hey, what's a few more right? FREE STUFF - GraphiX continues his free weapon parade with this awesome drill-bit shooting gun: https://forum.game-guru.com/thread/219394 I'm always in favor of new free weapons, as they are time consuming to make and usually cost a fair amount on the store. So anytime someone is generous enough to provide even something halfway decent, it's a boon for the rest of us. This however is a really nice piece with excellent texturing. Not wild about the colors but the actual textures look great! - Dvader came out of the woodwork to provide some interesting water wave code with the new PP water lua functionality: https://forum.game-guru.com/thread/219404 THIRD PARTY TOOLS Just a reminder I haven't updated my Notepad++ API yet for the newest PP commands. I'll get to it soon enough :) RANDOM ACTS OF CREATIVITY https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5l39r6rnaFo - A new developer put together a solid looking ' lush forest ' in Game-Guru. Good stuff. Dimoxinil updated again with respect to his PBR work. Still looks phenomenal. Wolf's change to Acythian - He updated saying he's renaming the project listed as Acythian to... something else. He's going to start a new project for Acythian that he feels is better suited for it. 'Guns of Solo' - Not a bad first try for a project, in fact a pretty good one. Levels look well designed, use of custom assets is decent enough. I have to say it's a pretty good attempt and I hope he takes the time to finish it. IN MY OWN WORKS - added several thousand words to book, almost finishing one of the final chapters on selling, legal information and dealing with hostile customers. - current word count sits at 37,000+ out of a projected 120,000+. Getting there :) View the full article ## This Week in Game-Guru - 02/26/2018 So this week I am proud to say that I've signed a book deal for my Game-Guru book (title withheld) with CRC Press. It's going to be a monster. 450 pages, minimum and it's already well on the way. Stay tuned to this space for more updates on it. If you are a content maker for Game-Guru, be aware I'm looking for assets to include with the book. Namely some weapons, buildings, and clutter objects. Contact me via this site, email, or PM me on the forums for more details. Now on with the show :) ENGINE UPDATE PROGRESS REPORT While not necessarily an 'engine progress' report, it's worth noting that some of the freelancers working on the git branch of GameGuru are looking to get a donation stream started. There's some contention about where it should go and how it should be disbursed but there's a lively discussion on the matter here: https://forum.game-guru.com/thread/219376 Beyond that we're looking at the newest build being pipelined out as a 'main' build (no longer public preview) very shortly. I think they're just looking for the results of this latest PP build which I have found personally to be very stable. NEW PRODUCTS IN THE STORE On the store we have a few new interesting items. Mad lobster workshop is.. STILL ADDING THINGS NEARLY A YEAR LATER TO HIS KIT. I mean.. it's cool, I appreciate the value but I almost feel like this guy is shooting himself in the foot at this point. He'd make more and it'd be more appealing to purchasers if he started doing a new pack. Anywho we have a new set of PBR assets from him that look great. I'm excited to try them out. Next we have a stogie that looks fantastic by master of clutter himself, Teabone. And lastly there are some helicopters by AlfredX10. Not my cup of tea but overall decently done enough. Alfred's got a lot of skill with modelling so I'm looking forward to see him work more on new models for GameGuru. FREE STUFF Lots of great new stuff this week. Graphix has made some phenomenal models which are free for use. They include two new weapons. Namely a really nasty looking hammer and a barbed-wire baseball bat! Looks nasty, doesn't it? Tarkus1971 has added something a little different, namely a creepy basement audio track for free use. Audio tracks are hard to find, harder still to get for free. Definitely don't miss it! THIRD PARTY TOOLS Entity welder has received an update. Per BOTR: (here) "version 1.7.3 now uploaded and available. Emails sent to all relevant users. Any issues, please let me know." RANDOM ACTS OF CREATIVITY This week we see some interesting new projects as well as some updates by the older and more established creators. The first new project is by 'noahuk '. It's called 'Evil of Asylym' and actually looks fairly well put together. You can view a video of it by going here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QayycyzjZ5c Next we have "schneeky's maze" which I have to say is an impressive departure from the typical first person shooter game we see. Definitely not your usual GameGuru game! This maze game uses a robot navigating VR-style terrain from a top-down view. In terms of updates we have an update from the increasingly chatty Dimoxinil who has added more PBR textures to his work. Looks great! Lastly Wolf has made a rare appearance, though if only to unlock a thread on one of his ongoing projects. I'm hoping to see an update there soon. IN MY OWN WORKS Gotta keep my cards close to the vest at this point. I have a lot going on, though a reminder that the Camerakit was recently made available on the store. Give it a glance, let me know what you think! As mentioned previously - there's a book coming. It'll probably be in print middle of next year, but in the meantime I am looking for interested authors to help me provide materials with the book. If you have something you'd like to donate, please don't hesitate to contact me (use the contact form on the right)! I also have a very small budget to work with or will trade you free copies of my own products. You'll also get a mention on the acknowledgements section. Up to you how you want to try to get in on the ground floor of something unique in the GameGuru world! View the full article ## This Week in Game-Guru - 02/19/2018 This week's update will be short and brief. A few major components that are worth mentioning in my area at the end about my own works. ENGINE UPDATE PROGRESS REPORT This week was a HUGE week for Game-Guru. Lee dropped a new public preview update onto our heads and aside from a minor issue with one of my levels loading a strange view (due to something wonky with the AI waypoint system causing my camera to screw up) it is a MASSIVE improvement. Speeds are way up. Weird stutter and lag is gone. Crashes caused by decals are gone. Other associated fixes are still on the way. Impressively, Preben (a forum member who does a lot of code fixes for us) has been getting increasingly involved and it shows. Updates to the update came in quick succession with minor bugfixes deployed often times in several same-day hotfixes. It's a huge jump. Expect a little delay before the next major release as they transition this PP to an actual Game-Guru release around April. For now, it's a great gift and seems to really run well on my system. Full notes and information can be found both here: https://forum.game-guru.com/thread/219024 And on the news update here: https://www.game-guru.com/news-post/gameguru-new-public-preview NEW PRODUCTS IN THE STORE This week on the store we have several new items. You're not dreaming, my name is actually up there for once. Mstockton has put in a low-priced 'burn pile' for junkyards. I like it though I do wish the texturing was a little better. That said it's impressively low priced so it could definitely find a home in your inventory. https://www.tgcstore.net/pack/11005 Also we have several updates - Teabone has added a 'gain health by drinking water' script. It's expressly listed as being similar to the ones in Skyrim and Fallout. https://www.tgcstore.net/product/31049 Graphix has also included something eerily reminiscent of fallout - a 'mech hangar'. This is a nice piece though I do wish he'd have done a little more to differentiate it from Fallout 4's power armor station. I worry that one might run into some snags legally if they used it in a product for sale. https://www.tgcstore.net/pack/11006 AlexGCC has put together a DAMN fine building called the 'derelict building'. This building unfortunately has a slightly ajar door but the overwhelmingly high quality output of the model makes up for that little misgiving I have. It's priced to sell. https://www.tgcstore.net/product/31046 Lastly my own product - the Camerakit (aka camkit) is on the store. This product is expressly designed to make camera work for security monitors, cutscenes, etc much easier for the average user. More on how and why down below but for now, check out this video: It can be picked up from the store here: https://www.tgcstore.net/product/31048 (NOTE - IT'S on sale until 2/25!) FREE STUFF The realm of free stuff has really slowed down a lot. This is all I could find this week - an updated copy of the sandstone building that comes with the base Game-Guru system: https://forum.game-guru.com/attachment/18255 THIRD PARTY TOOLS Looks like OldPman is still improving the normalizator utility which I understand will have full PBR support if not now, then soon. Latest update is as follows: Hey. Pirate Myke and Earthling45 , thanks for the feedback. I'm working on expanding the toolkit at the moment and there will be many opportunities added. A square brush, applying text, stamps is the first on my desktop. Adding the color of the texture and several other filters are now also in development. If you had in mind the choice of the color of the brush, then to the left of the alpha under the paint button, there is a rectangle clicking on which you open the colorpicker. - OldPMan This is a really good utility I need to get my mitts on when I get some free time. RANDOM ACTS OF CREATIVITY There's a lot of stuff on youtube. I found a new project with a purported '239 hours' of development. That's quite a lot for a single project! https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xP4I-Xq1auA There's also this great lighting tutorial by DuchenKuke: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=d6-7m6QLQMA He also made a pretty good mountain-making tutorial showcasing an interesting method of using the flattener tool to create realistic shapes. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RlLS7Kts9mI And a totally Russian (I think?) tutorial. Feel free to watch it if you dare, though I recommend using auto-translate to read it. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eb1zCS8kPxw Lastly Teabone (a generally awesome forum-bro) has been doing some really great scripting work of his own: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uVjoOoSRzwg IN MY OWN WORKS So I just wanted to bring up a few things, things which are going on in my world here. Foremost, I have my Camera Kit (shown above!) on the store. This project has been a while in the making and has some really cool features such as tracking, re-use, multi-camera setups, cutscene style location triggers and more. I may add a trigger zone in the future but for now I have more than enough to get people started. This kit came from my work with the Notepad++ API I made. I realized camera controls in this game engine could be fairly complex. I wondered if maybe it'd be easier to have a camera that had a place you could easily point to instead of calculating Euler angles and rotations. I mean who really wants to use a rotation matrix just to figure out where to place a camera?! So I created a very simple camera system which sort of blossomed from there into an easy to use kit for the 'everyman'. Simply place an object, attach the camera initiator, then choose it's target. Easy! The multi-cam system works the same, except the camera and initiator are separated so you can multiple cameras. Next, I submitted my proposal to a publisher. What, you ask? Let me say that again - I submitted my Game-Guru book proposal to a publisher. I've been in contact with several prominent forum members, Lee, Rick V, and a publishing house (CRC Press). I am currently working on a very lengthy print-on-paper book which will be a start to finish guide to Game-Guru. I'm looking forward to working on that over the next year. It will be eating a lot of my spare cycles but I don't mind even in the slightest. The book is probably going to be on the order of 430 pages, tons of pictures, tutorials, a complete walkthrough of how to build a high quality game, and more. Keep an eye out for more details as I complete the work on it. View the full article ## This Week in Game-Guru - 02/12/2018 Sorry for the delayed update this week. Family's been sick and I'm not feeling that great myself. ENGINE UPDATE PROGRESS REPORT Currently the engine appears to have a PP version brewing for mid-February which should resolve many of the issues we've seen with a quick followup (hopefully) to a regular release. That'll put us on track for Lee's usual 6 month release cycle for major changes. Beyond that it appears there's ongoing work on previous download content and add-ons for Game-Guru getting the 'PBR treatment'. This includes now the Mega Pack 1 DLC as mentioned here. NEW PRODUCTS IN THE STORE Mad lobster keeps adding more and more to his laboratory kit. I'm astonished he'd continue to give current owners extra value on what was ALREADY a good value. The price of the kit HAS gone up to reflect that, but if you're a current owner make sure you download the latest goodies for the laboratory kit. It looks like the venerable (and somewhat wacky) Colosso has increased his proficiency at modeling considerably and his newer objects continue to add quality and value to his portfolio. His newest pack and objects are proof of that. Teabone has added some fine clutter objects, including the best looking food object I've seen in a long time. Not sure how he does it, but definitely worth a purchase for that low of a price. Also, as a side note, purchasers of my Advanced Time of Day and Weather kit will have an update available to them. It's a fairly major bugfix and update. You can see the details below in the 'in my own works' section. FREE STUFF The big news here is that Lafette has given away a very major piece of work for free out of what seems to be boredom with the project. It's an extremely high quality science fiction kit that can be found here: https://forum.game-guru.com/thread/219315 THIRD PARTY TOOLS Heightmap import (HIMP) tool is on hold due to BOTR having a newborn son. Congrats! Entity welder is also on hold for the same reason. RANDOM ACTS OF CREATIVITY Looks like Dimoxiland is doing some more work on his project "Space Losers" for GG. These updates are always exciting because he's pretty much the cream of the crop for Game-Guru developers. Check out this screenshot! That's what I'm talking about. All custom code, graphics, etc. It's impressive beyond any reason and if he finishes it will probably put Game-Guru on the map. IN MY OWN WORKS As mentioned my Advanced Time of Day and Weather kit has had some fairly major updates. 02/12/2018 Added specular effect for snow to give it whitish appearance for terrain objects on highest values. I basically changed specularity to 50x for white. This can be commented out if it's not desirable but overall I think it works well enough considering the engine itself. Repaired broken build with files specifically from PP dev build of mine cross-pollinating live non-pp (DX9) build. updated test map file Fixed/repaired time function(s), they sync to states now and also rollover seamlessly day to day Fixed broken cycleloopcounter pointers which were still working in old code (singleuse/singlestate/etc). Fixed bag_w_indoors script, huzzah! Added 'pp' versions of the weather effects. If they don't work, let me know the error you get. So to sum up I basically had a non-pp build get mixed with a pp build that accidentally got uploaded. I basically made separate FPE files at this point for the PP weather effect decals which can be used in place. The script remains the same for both as it will function on both. I'm also including both .fx files for the effectbank folder which should resolve any conflict between the two versions. The biggest fix is the resolution of the w_indoors script, which now functions seamlessly. Camerakit is almost ready to be bundled up and posted to the store, expect that very shortly! View the full article ## This Week In Game-Guru - 2/5/2018 ENGINE UPDATE PROGRESS REPORT If you keep an eye on https://github.com/TheGameCreators/GameGuruRepo/issues you can get an interesting sense of what is being looked at and what isn't. Currently there isn't a huge amount of 'buy in' for the github repo but it is coming along and in 6-10 months I expect it to be trucking along fairly well. There's a good body of issues being brought to the attention of Lee and company. So we'll see but for now, mum's the word. NEW PRODUCTS IN THE STORE What you see above is the whole of it. Gtox is adding new weapons (this knife apparently has an alt-attack, which is pretty cool!) and M Stockton has done some great work making a skate parka nd some parking blocks. High quality models are always good thing! FREE STUFF https://forum.game-guru.com/thread/219294 - DuchenKuke has offered a really great variety of free music from his old fallout work. I love this type of thing and highly encourage people to use it to help differentiate their product from stock offerings. https://forum.game-guru.com/thread/215012?page=15 - Bod has given us a great deal of things over the years and he continues to deliver. This time it's a Mallard train, carriage, and a really fantastic looking train station (check out the picture below!). Make sure you tell him how much you appreciate his work - I think he's getting fatigued a bit and it always helps to hear some encouraging words. This is a really brilliant new piece, in my opinion! https://forum.game-guru.com/thread/219211 - In HonkeyBoy's thread about his survival system, there's a new Lathe that's been added by GraphiX which is pretty impressive and definitely worth a download. THIRD PARTY TOOLS Nothing really new and exciting here. Preben did make an interesting change to GG Loader which apparently improved framerates significantly by reducing draw-calls. Hopefully this will have some future implementation in Game-Guru. I have more to do for my notepad API but it's going to be a bit. I simply have too much on my plate at the moment.. RANDOM ACTS OF CREATIVITY https://forum.game-guru.com/thread/219296 - DuchenKuke's new project looks promising. I love post-apocalyptic games and this one looks like a solid piece. It's interesting, I've asked him what his method is and he mostly just wings it. I guess some do have a natural talent for level-building. Lucky bastard was apparently gifted with it more than I was, apparently. https://forum.game-guru.com/thread/217908?page=3#msg2595102 - Dimoxiland has done some major reworking to his "Space Losers" game and I think it's really going places. Check out the above video for details. Very cool stuff. Check out how clean the scripting and game play is! Definitely one to keep an eye on. https://forum.game-guru.com/thread/219258 - Honkeyboy's latest creation - Death by Daylight shows a remarkable increase in level design and proficiency for Game-Guru's most prolific author. He's got rapid development down to a science at this point and it's really starting to make strides. https://forum.game-guru.com/thread/219277 - Teabone has done some... very curious... things with scripting and automobiles in Game-Guru. Definitely worth a look. IN MY OWN WORKS I've made some progress on the Camera system I'm working on. I have 3 out of 4 of the major pieces I want before I release it. Once I get the last piece in play, I will build a demo level, zip it up, and sell it (for about$4).  It'll start off on sale at 3.50.  The camera kit will have some very interesting components which I believe most will appreciate.  I may add some niceties to it but that's not required at this point so it may get added down the road.

After that I have to finish my other two kits.  So keep an eye out for some interesting news there.

## Lessons Learned from Deus Ex: Mankind Divided (DEMD)

Minor update: In the lower portion I have some errors which were corrected by Sylvain Douce, the Senior Technical Designer @ Eidos Montreal (who made DEMD).  He states:

"Very good piece! One minor things: AI middleware we used for DXHR and DXMD is Navpower ( http://www.babelflux.com/ ), everything else was built in-house."

Also, it's extremely awesome of him to read it, enjoy it, and retweet it! Thanks a lot Sylvain!

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I don't think it's any great secret that I love Sci-Fi, especally cyberpunk dystopian themed sci-fi.   While I find Bladerunner a bit droll, the environment it helped create persists as one of my favorites.  So Deus Ex games have long fit into my inventory of favorites and this game was no exception.  I absolutely loved Human Revolution so it was only natural I'd eventually get around to playing through Mankind Divided.

Now for reference I should mention this was played through on PS4.  This means it almost always is going to be somewhat graphically optimized to improve the speed and provide a fluid experience on a console.

I've decided to do a rather lengthy deconstruction of the game as it pertains to Independent Gamedevs specifically using Game-Guru.  Others may find it useful, your miles will invariably ... vary.

First of all, it bears mentioning this game was developed using the 'Dawn Engine.' created by Eidos- Montreal.

The engine is not without some controversy due to some issues with load times.  Overall though, it's a fairly stable engine that ran relatively well in my instance.  It did, however, seem to lack some of the really high end features that can set apart an engine.  From what I could tell though:

It seems to have been developed directly for DEMD as no other games have used it since it's inception in 2014. it has reasonably high graphical fidelity with low framerate cost.  I will discuss this in greater detail below. The AI package used was very good, albeit it's middleware (APEX AI).  There's actually a fair amount of middleware, but that's not tremendously surprising. (SEE ABOVE)
The game engine is apparently a heavily modified glacier 2 engine.  For those not aware, that's the 'Hitman' game engine.  I recommend reading the linkthrough for a highly technical summary of what the Dawn Engine encompasses.
That all aside, let's begin our lesson.

Graphical/Lighting tricks Deus Ex: Human Revolution gave us great gameplay in a fantastic looking game.  Deus Ex: Mankind Divided is no exception.   There are a lot of extremely fancy tricks used to produce great framerates while providing a very impressive visual experience.

The first thing you'll notice, if you're new to Deus Ex, is there is no more 'gold filter'.  This means the scenes feel less cohesive if they're not built specifically to match.  While the gold filter is a bit of a bludgeon, it did give a sense of character to DEHR that is somewhat lost in DEMD.  DEMD however makes up for it in spades by having a significant amount of purpose built coloration in the scenes while at the same time using giving identity to each area.  On one hand they lose the 'Deus Ex' filter but gain individuality in each scene.  It was a reasonable tradeoff.

Modders removed the gold filter and added some fidelity in DEHR, but it also serves as a good example of the type of difference you see between DEHR and DEMD.

I am big fan of using colors to 'unify' the palette so that a scene feels more cohesive.  This technique artistically speaking is useful for helping to help join together disparate textures which I have a massive quantity of due to many different artists providing many different assets for my use over the years.  In my case, I'd have kept the gold filter or color tone map (assuming you are using reshade).  All in all though if you have a ton of custom art in a lot of wildly different locations like DEMD did, it makes more sense to not filter them all through a gold lens.

PBR and resource management. DEMD uses a physically based rendering pipeline which allows for some really impressive visuals.  While mirrored surfaces don't look particularly impressive, the shine on the floors is really good.  Certain elements of the environment really stand out, notably pipes.  These shiny surfaces help you realize that in terms of our own engine (GameGuru) which recently obtained PBR capabilities we'd want to use them selectively on things that BEST show them off.  While it's nice to have every single thing in your game use it, it simply eats too many resources.  Selectively choosing the best scenes for it (shiny metal, hardwoods, glass, etc) is a much more attractive option than putting it on bland surfaces where you receive minimal visual 'pop' like concrete.  This in turn helps us save vital resources, which is a struggle with a 32 bit engine like Game-Guru.

The reflections used localized cubemaps which are definitely available in Game-Guru so that's a nice addition on Lee and Preben's part which will allow us to create beautiful reflections  on pipes and mirrors.

Transparencies on light planes DEMD cleverly uses light planes with alpha-transparencies to create the illusion of 'dust' in the air.  The game supposedly has volumetric density for the engine, but I suspect they de-tuned it for the PS4.  If that's the case, at least it's given us a specific example we can draw from.

Those streaming beams of light look more like vertical 'planes' from head on.
Take for instance the above picture.  I walked back and forth and noticed several clear planes (2 dimensional flat objects in a 3d space).  Now granted, it was probably algorithmic or volumetrically done but we can reproduce the same effect with this basic texture for our plane in Game-Guru:

Yeah, I got lazy and made the last line too wide. So basically what we have here is a series of blank spaces that are alpha masked completely open.  Then I took the 'filled' areas, put in a white to grey gradient, then created an alpha mask off those as well.  This gives us a semi-transparent 'beam' of shadowed area.  So we basically get the OPPOSITE effect of what we see above.  Give it a try with your own plane.  I'll probably put one of these on the store (for free) once I correct the mistakes made in the above file.

Flares on lights that  get a lot of attention In the opening area of the main game you begin in Adam Jensen's house, which acts as a sort of technical demo for the game.  In that location if you look up you'll see a significant amount of studio lighting but notably they use a flare decal that is facing the player.

Those are circular lights with a line-shaped flare.  We can achieve this same effect using a decent flare and the player_facing.lua script that is included with game-guru.  One thing that DEMD did really well though was it's occlusion; when you are NEAR a corner the flare switches off subtly so that it looks seamless.  Overall, a fairly simple but nice looking effect is achieved.

Baked lighting 90% of the time.  These days, a lot of games really rely on  dynamic lighting.  It's fancy, it looks nice, and it's GPU intensive.  It also has clear limitations which are another topic for another time.   Deus Ex uses an updated older technique, notably Tiled Lighting that's baked in.  This allows high speed renders of scenes where the light is not likely to change and also allows the artist a great degree of control if they're willing to invest the time.

You start to see it everywhere the more you start looking for it.
Unfortunately Game-Guru cannot do dynamic lighting very well and as such it leaves us in a pickle a lot of the time. However in DEMD they do a LOT of baked lighting and it shows.  This game is virtually a showcase for 'how to do static lighting the right way'.  Color choices are not obtrusive, are placed to provide windows with indoor light.

The red circle shows where the light is, outside (approximately 30ft behind the wall).

Note the placement of the light and how it streams in through the window.  It bakes cleanly onto the surface and gives it a nice 'early day' feel.   This same technique can be done with Game-Guru, rather than relying on 'sunlight' - we pre-bake static lights outside of a window to provide the building interior with realistic lighting.

Clever transitioning One interesting element I think is worth mentioning is, as the heading suggests, 'clever transitioning'.  While many levels simply pop you to a loading screen, moving about the main city of Prague gives you a varied scene (depending on where you are going to or coming from).

Have a mini-game  The hacking mini-game remains mostly unchanged from DEHR but really felt at home in this game. While it's a lot of extra work, at the same time it can really provide a payoff for the player who needs some variety in their game beyond the usual 'shoot or sneak' methodology.

Oh no, only 2 seconds left! ABORT! ABOOOOOORT!
Often I found myself in a higher sense of tension from the hacking minigame than the actual game itself.  Sometimes even the threat of discovery while hacking (the world doesn't just stop while you're hacking) provided it's own 'sinking feeling' while you were ferociously attempting to subvert system nodes to bend an non-compliant computer to your will.  While the additional 'sink' of adding a mini-game is seemingly unnecessary, it also adds a lot of play value to a game.

A living city I have a good friend who also is very into Deus Ex; he's actually the one who first pointed me at Human Revolution, even bought my copy back when I was flat broke.

I asked him what he thought of Mankind Divided, without spoiling anything.  He replied "it's a great game, they really did a great job of making it feel like a living city."

I felt that was worth mentioning here given how spot on his analysis is.  This game really does a great job of making you feel like you are in a living, breathing, ALIVE environment.  Each area has tons of sandboxing and detail which makes every single space different and independent.  So how did they do it?

The red light district, for instance, really takes it's name to heart.
Well, foremost - each area is it's own 'scene'.  It's as if they built one overarching area, built the major components, then filled in the rest with minor story pieces.

This room exemplifies the microcosm within macrocosm feel.
There's a world of microcosms within the macrocosm of the individual 'global' level and it really provides this deep sense of uniqueness to each specific room.  The stories for these rooms aren't anything significant most times.  Often they are simply something as simple as 'this is the asshole gang dealer who doubles as your local black market shop' room.  Other times small rooms take massive twists and turns, such as the crazy cat lady who ends up having her own miniature story that makes her a much CRAZIER cat lady.

While often the rooms are 'revisited' for story purposes and such you can pretty usually boil them down to a basic, simple story.   Obviously the indy dev can't afford the time to write a massive, engrossing story for each sub-mission in their game.  Which apparently, neither can AAA devs.  Which brings me to my next point.

Secrets are simply unexplored areas  In my "Lessons learned from Doom's Level Design (part 1) (part 2) (part 3) (part 4) " I discuss use of secrets and their necessity for gaming.  It's something that helps reward a player for investing even more time in their game than absolutely required.  I mean let's face it, most people play games to feel rewarded, to enjoy the satisfaction of accomplishing a challenge.  Deus Ex rewards this in spades by ensuring that every single hidden area is replete with it's own set of rewards ranging from extra ammo to hidden secret rifles.  I still remember being in the ARC headquarters level and going down literally 5 or 6 stories on tiny rails just to find a hidden rifle.  It was an insane amount of detail for a single secret, but these are the types of things players remember.

I was being literal in the literal sense.  That yellow dot is where you start at before worming down to the gun.

Try to use your dead ends and open spaces to provide the players with additional reward for looking at your hard work.  Open up your single alleyways into branching paths that lead them to interesting rooms that really are just there to provide life and depth to the game.

Open ended level design Deus Ex games have been renowned for their  open ended level design but it's worth discussing, at least briefly here how it was implemented in DEMD.  DEHR had a fair amount of 'open-endedness' to it, but I think in this case DEMD gets the upper hand.  You literally had piles of avenues to perform different possibilities.  Missions had more than one failure or success condition and you often had branching trees that could spell serious disaster later on.

I remember in mission one, I was helping out an agent (Singh).  You are to save his life at the end which is no small feat as you're attacked by masked assassins in a sandstorm.  It is, in short, a train wreck of a situation. Keeping him alive is incredibly difficult.

I'm sure you'll see him if you just keep staring long enough.  I did this, but only to have him die later in the game because I neglected one small sub-objective on that same mission of disabling a communications tower.  This causes him to get killed while undercover as his cover was blown.  Little things like this are like a spaghetti plate of decisions, which require lots and lots of planning.  That means writing things down.  Which also means, you guessed it, a design document - and we all know that's basically the same thing to an indy dev as garlic to a vampire.  Sure, it won't kill you... but it's damned uncomfortable.

Moreover level design is incredibly fluid; you have lots of answers to single problems.  This means you often have the choices of going in loud by shooting everything in sight, hacking your way in via a console, taking rooftop access stealthily, running through vents to come up behind your foes, or a myriad of other alternate choices that often boil down to 'get from point a to point b'.

There are about a dozen ways in and a dozen ways through the 'uncrackable' Palisade bank.

This depth of level design is a big draw for this game type, allowing players to really dig in and pick how they want to do things.  Sometimes you just want the pure visceral thrill of unloading a 28 round magazine from a fully automatic pistol into some poor bastard who dared to wander too close.  Other times hitting people with tranquilizer darts in the neck out of sight of others is the better tactical choice.  These types of dynamics often aren't so much planned as they are a result from thorough level design and planning with a focus on building multiple avenues of approach for a single objective.

Intelligent AI design The AI in this game is something else.  There are a lot of times where you feel like you want to really get in there and mix it up and find yourself dealing with attacks from both sides.
While a lot of this has to do with level design (alternate routes, enemy placements, the location of an enemy taking the shortest route to your location) it also has a lot to do with an intelligent system that is attempting to find the best way to kill you.  It's impressive and not easily duplicated.  Maybe one day we'll have that depth in Game-Guru, though at this point in time your best method will be use of lots of navigation nodes and good enemy placement.

Wrapping up All in all, I found myself least interested in the main story, which is the unfortunate side effect of having an impressive game with great mechanics.  I can't think of anything about the game I really hated.  Everything played well and it served as a great teacher to a willing student.  I highly recommend you give it a run through and see what you can learn from it too!

There's a pick up objects script you can use to create a similar style to Deus Ex found here:

## This Week in Game-Guru - 1/29/2018

There's been a lot of changes this week; things that sort of shattered the situation as it stood and put us in a very interesting place.  One that could either be precarious or one that could be a significant boon.  Time will really tell.  Check out the Engine Update Progress Report section below for more details.

ENGINE UPDATE PROGRESS REPORT
This week Lee made a massive update by placing all of the source code to Game-Guru live on github.  He's created an issues tracker (link here) which can be used to publicly follow all of the ongoing developmental issues and bugs.  He's got old hats who worked on FPSC (classic) code working on Game-Guru now.  He's literally paying outside developers to work on features that are taking him too long to develop personally.  This is what you do, folks, when you truly want to reinvent a brand.  Game-Guru has stalled in development and has had a massive amount of 'under the hood' changes.  Unfortunately as a usable product, it's maybe 30 or 40% more than what I could use a few years ago when it was FPSC:Reloaded.  That's only because of additional Lua extensibility.  The core engine itself hasn't really added much in terms of functionality within the GUI driven IDE.

So this is a huge step and in a sense a massive gamble at the same time.  It's what's needed though, if Game-Guru is going to thrive in a market increasingly dominated by AAA providers like Unreal, Lumberyard, and Unity.

I believe Game-Guru has a lot of potential.  It's easy to get into, easy to work with.  It's got too many flaws to be functional though and until those are addressed, it's really caused a lot of project stagnation for many, many people.

NEW PRODUCTS IN THE STORE
This week on the store can be summed up in the following picture:

So a few things here.  First, it really looks as if Colosso has improved a lot.  His newer stuff is coming along well and that's saying a lot - I can plainly say his art style was not my cup of tea previously.  This current style fits him well.

Second we have a relative newcomer putting up an interesting looking boat.  While I can appreciate anyone trying to market their first real go on the store... it's plainly not up to spec for the price they're asking.  If I were 1CE I'd lower the price by at least 50%  until my texturing matched other artists pushing that price point.

Of particular note is the fact that Wizard of Id has put his newest sewer pack up as both a PBR and Non PBR asset sets.  This is important because frankly a lot of people may not want or need PBR.  While I'm a little disappointed in his pricing (it always is a lot higher than this crowd can afford, initially), I am happy with the quality of his work.  If you're going to spend 29 dollars on a product Game-Guru, usually you want one of his.  I've spent the money and have been satisfied.  His are the closest to 'professional grade' products available on the Game-Guru store.

FREE STUFF
Free stuff this week is pretty substantial.  We got not one, but TWO free weapons!
Weapons are like solid gold.  They are something we don't get a lot of, that are expensive on the store because they take just so much work to do.  We got two of them!  It's really awesome of both Graphix and Gtox to produce these for us.
First we have a chainsaw provided by Graphix: https://forum.game-guru.com/thread/219263

Vrrrrrrrrrm!

All I can say is FINALLY.  Being a Doom 1/2 freak, this is something that's been desperately missing.  I could nitpick the sort of rapid animation and overly chromatic textures, but I mean comon - it's a freaking chainsaw!  Best part is there's no hands rigged to it so it can literally be used with any other game.

Next we have Gtox's damn fine work on a crowbar, Ala Gordon Freeman.

This thing is freaking gorgeous.  I mean it just looks fantastic.   And Gtox even included an alt-attack (he's done this for some of his other weapons too) where when you hit left-alt it will do a secondary attack.  Very good stuff indeed.

Some freebies by Honkeyboy were posted as well.  One is a set of  'English trees' , the other was a few items for his crafting survival script: https://forum.game-guru.com/thread/219211 which include things like a furnace and workbench.

THIRD PARTY TOOLS
This week in third party tools we have  nothing really new.  I need to update my Lua API for Notepad++ to include global variables like g_Entity and g_PressKeyE(etc).   That should show up later this week in a separate post.

RANDOM ACTS OF CREATIVITY
'Death by daylight' - Honkeyboy's latest creation.  This zombie shooter looks promising and while it lacks the maturity in graphical refinement it does offer a crafting system which should help tilt the balance in favor of this being a more interesting title.  What impresses me most about Honkeyboy is how many irons he can keep in the fire and how many he keeps throwing in.   The guy has endless energy, which is a good thing to have when you're an Independent Gamedev.

'Cowboy Shootout' - Len the Man has been working on this title for quite some time but it's coming along well. He's obviously putting a lot of effort into it and it's really  starting to show.  Lots of custom models and interesting components in a much needed cowboy action game.

Pretty high end for GG!

As you can see, the quality is definitely there.  Nice to see someone sticking with it, through all the ups and downs.

IN MY OWN WORKS
I have too many irons in the fire myself.  I really ran into some stumbling blocks with my upcoming kits and it's just.. frustrating trying to find the time to sit down and work on them uninterrupted.  Life has been hectic enough, but it just keeps adding more and more to my plate.

Currently I have too much going on and need to clear some items before adding new ones.  Look for any of the following to have something on them later this week:

any of 3 different scripting kits a new sky pack for 2018 a new terrain PLUS very interesting foliage (includes custom script) one of two books I'm writing one of two tutorials I'm writing on this blog A final(?) update to the notepad ++ Lua API.   You get the idea.  There's simply too much going on upstairs and I need to clear some room.
I'm glad I am able to keep all this rolling and was able to get the Lua API workable.  The scripting kits are about 10%, 30% and 40% there, respectively.  Any one of those could get completed this week depending on how my brain decides to plop out it's workload.