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Trees

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So, after many late nights of pouring over options, photoshopping my little Cow onto all manner of screenshots, and reflecting on the type of game I wanted to make - the die is cast! I've decided to go with a nice fun stylised graphics style, as not only is it much easier to make, but I finally decided it just matched the whole fantasy animal game I wanted to make anyway. Rather than trying to polish everything to the best of my (programmer) abilities as I go, my plan is to try and get a "good enough to play" look for things, and then come back at the end and revise and polish as much or little as I want to (or have time to).

Here's an unfinished test room, with the first fir trees:

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There still a bit I need to do, even to get to workable graphics (cliff tiles are just standins, there are a few missing grass border pieces, and the I want to add some more varieties of fir like trunks, long trunks, shorter bodies, etc) - but this is one of the first screenshots where I can see my game - as opposed to a prototype, which is pretty cool.

Another thing I'm keen to do is make the world itself a lot less "inert" - I want trees to wobble and sway when something hits them, I want flowers to wave around wildly as you march through them, etc. To this end, I've started to think about how I'm going to implement "composite" physics bodies so I can build an armature inside these trees and then wire it up with some spring constraints. My goal is to use the same system to do ragdolls and secondary animation (like pony tails, etc). I'm not expecting to have this up and running for a bit though.

Cheers!
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Quote:
Original post by johnhattan
Really like the trees. The "dirt" columns are a little too sharp, though. They oughta be rounded like the terrain.


Totally agree - they're just placeholder tiles to test the texture colour. I was just so delighted with the way it was starting to come together, I couldn't resist throwing up a screenshot =)

The blue stepping "squares" are temporary as well - I want to redo them with a nice tribal carved stone at some point.

Thanks for the support and comments all - much appreciated.

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Original post by LachlanL
Looking way too swish for my liking! Not nearly amateur enough! [wink]


Ahh - you see, such is the magic of the simple graphics style! Many a crap "real" looking screenshot preceded the one you see here =)

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I like your plan for the physics system. I would have probably just thought of making simple animations for the tree/flower models. You're way is much more extensible. Good luck with it.

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Did you read my comment on the last post? Nevermind, I like the new style a lot! I just thought of a game widget, you could have a Wobbly Tree that constantly bounces around a bit, and the little cow could jump on it to make a bigger jump and get to higher places! It sprang to mind somehow, maybe it's got to do with the game I imagined when I saw that image :)

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Original post by Jotaf
Did you read my comment on the last post? Nevermind, I like the new style a lot! I just thought of a game widget, you could have a Wobbly Tree that constantly bounces around a bit, and the little cow could jump on it to make a bigger jump and get to higher places! It sprang to mind somehow, maybe it's got to do with the game I imagined when I saw that image :)


I did indeed - thanks kindly for the link! I did photoshop my cow onto that (and some similar grabs from WoW and NWN2 which use the same terrain blending) - but in the end decided a more cartoony, well defined border not only suited the visual style better, but worked better for the game play I want to build (if you've played Head over Heels, you'll know why I say this!).

And we're certainly on the same wavelength with the springy trees! The physics solver actually does't like the cow trying to land on the pointy tip of these particular trees (he just gets thrown off to one side), but my plan is to create some flatter topped objects (like Mushrooms and bushes) and let you bounce off these like springs to reach higher parts of the level. I'm not sure yet whether I'll be able to get "real" physics to work for the spring effect - as it's quite hard to maintain a good contact on the way down (which causes the spring to oscillate and dissipate energy), but I'm just like you - looking at the screenshot makes me want to jump and bounce into everything =)

Still - that's on the back burner for a bit. The next thing to add is a real status panel so I can start to move this from a physics prototype to a simple game world.

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