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Kicking off the New Year

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Gaiiden

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Sunday, Jan 1

Happy New Year everyone. I have a feeling that 2006 is going to be my best year yet, so I'm looking forward to what it has to bring me. I see exciting things on the horizon for myself and I'm pumped.

So I reformatted my laptop to Sony spec last week. Seems to be running okay but I can tell the HDD is working a lot slower than it used to. My girlfriend said she found a Sony store in a mall in northern Jersey - I'm going to call them up tomorrow and see if I can bring the laptop up to them for repairs rather than have to ship it out to San Diego. I'm also planning on adding an additional stick of 512MB RAM to give me an even greater performance boost while I'm at it.

I also re-konfabulated my desktop for fun since I'm not going to have the laptop for long before I send it out. However I kinda like what I ended up with



It just borders on overdoing it, but gives me all the info I want on my desktop.

My GI project is moving along, although nowhere near as fast as I originally anticipated. We're still going over a lot of legal stuff that hurts my head, but we're in the final stages. Hopefully I'll be able to send out emails soon and start spreading the word amongst the community.

Tomorrow I'm going to start organizing the IGF finalists and putting out the word for contributers to help interview the 20 teams that made it to the finals this year. If you're reading this and know you would be interested send me a PM, or just wait for more info - I'll be posting an announcement or a sticky in the Lounge.

In my last post of last year listed a bunch of things I needed to get done on GC to start working my way towards the feature complete game. Well I knocked off a few tonight after about 2 hours of work. I resolved the map loading issue with the backgrounds in a matter of minutes, just a few minor code edits to complete the implementation. Building the game screen GUI (item #1) also went off without a hitch, although it did take me a little bit to get back into it even after only a week or so off. Next I took care of item #2, which also was easier than I thought, well at this stage anyhow. Right now the only things that needed to be done were to check if it was an Imperialism game or not and hide the territories layer if it wasn't, and remove any tiles that didn't contain a system. Item #3 didn't take much longer either since the map loading is the exact same as the editor. Mostly my time was spent creating the placehoder assets from their sprite templates and positioning all the GUI elements.


To illustrate how a map appears in the editor vs. the game, here's an editor shot. No matter what the territories are displayed so you can edit them.


Here you see no shaded layer, because this is a Conquest game, not an Imperialism game


Furthermore, in case you were sill confused about the "blank systems" in the editor, which appear as systems containing concentric boxes...


You can see now that they simply don't appear at all in a game. Obviously a map like this is poorly laid out - you really don't want systems isolated like they are here - but this lets you create maps of various shapes rather than just squares. Squares are boring, after all

So there are some shots of the actual in-game screen. The quit button top center is just there until I get the in-game menu up and running. As you may have guessed, everything but the map on the screen are placeholder graphics, except for the text, The top text in each of the panels will reflect the player's name, while the bottom text in the panel will reflect the player's score or planet count (in game types where applicable). All the images (now GUI elements) will actually be sprites soon since they have to change appearances during the game. But I'll explain that once their implemented.

Here's my updated task list:

  1. Create the game screen GUI

  2. [Added 1/1/06] Implement map loading changes for game. Maps loaded in a game do not appear as they are loaded in the editor. Blank systems, for example, are not rendered

  3. Load the map chosen in the menu in the GUI

  4. Flesh out the Player class

  5. Load the game with player info (name/planet/difficulty)

  6. Create game loop and allow players to take turns placing planets

  7. Create & implement the ingame menu GUI

  8. Create & implement the ingame settings menu GUI

  9. Begin implementing Conquest gameplay


Finally, just want to point out the tutorial I wrote today over on the T2D TDN (Torque Developer Network) on how to create splash screens for your T2D game. Felt good to write an article again at long last [smile]

Okay I guess that's it for me for today. Holy crap I dunno why but it seemed like a reeeeaaalllyy long day. I feel like I got so much done. Haven't felt that way in a while. Perhaps cause it's the new year? Hee hee sure. I plan on spending the rest of the night curled up with The Last Dragonlord by Joanne Bertin. My girlfriend got me it and it's sequel Dragon and Phoenix for xmas. I'd recommend it to any of you sci fi/fantasy readers out there. This book's got a hell of a lot of meat to it, reminds me a lot of Battlefield Earth in terms of its scope and complexity of story. I wasn't sure whether I'd like it or not but it's got me hooked. Refreshing break from Star Wars too, which is pretty much all I ever read [smile].

See yas tomorrow...
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Quote:

Are the backgrounds dynamic or static?

They're static, mainly since the game board has a lot of animations for the special systems and so we don't want the background to animate because that would draw attention away from the board and distract players.
Quote:

Thanks for the New Years present. :)

Not a problem [smile]

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