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Christoher Randin

Getting started but how to make a prototype of my game

6 posts in this topic

Well, I have gotten my thoughts and ideas fleshed out for my game. I want to start getting something done now, but the thing is I have no models or what not. I don't mind using faceless models and what not, but will be able to easily swap my plain model with some better looking model,

Also, where would I do animations for like walk. Would animations on the plain model transfer over to the detail models and so on for other models as well.

I just want to get the logic working and not worry about the graphics, but I am just not sure how to get started on my prototype.

My game is 3D model platformer with a tilted camera angle, which will be a face pace hack and slash along with a story, puzzle, and dodge maneuvering tricks here and there. I have really started with scripting a camera on anything yet, because I am not sure if it will transfer over when I do get prettier graphics. Just wondering if anyone knows how to go about this. Edited by Cdrandin
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I used to have the same problem of not knowing where to start after laying down the fundamental concepts of a game.

The best way to prototype a game is to take an existing game engine and build your prototype from there. This minimizes the amount of boiler plate code you have to write and allows you to focus on creating the game mechanics. They also often contain sample games and models which you can utilize in the prototype of your game. From the description of your game idea I would personally recommend using the [url="http://unity3d.com/"]Unity[/url] game engine.

Other engines you could look at:[list]
[*][url="http://www.unrealengine.com/udk/"]UDK[/url]
[*][url="http://jmonkeyengine.com/"]jMonkeyEngine[/url]
[/list]
You can find a fairly comprehensive list on Wikipedia [url="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_game_engines"]here[/url].

You haven't stated your programming experience so I assumed you are proficient in that area. If you're just getting started at that then I would either recommend learning one first or using a high-level scripted game engine such as [url="http://www.yoyogames.com/gamemaker/studio"]GameMaker[/url] (2D game engine) and create a 2D prototype whilst learning to program.

I only have a little experience with 3D model animation (Hopefully someone with more experience can help you in a reply) but if I am not wrong once you rig an animation using [url="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Skeletal_animation"]skeletal animation[/url] you can apply it to models that have similar skeletons (such as humanoids) with a bit of modification.

Hope that helps and good luck with your project.
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As long as models share the same skeleton, then animations for one model will work for all. But if you are just prototyping, why bother with animations at all? this fluff is unnecessary for game play prototyping, in most cases. Does it really matter if the model appears to be walking ? or could a simple translation suffice for prototyping?
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[quote name='Burnt_Fyr' timestamp='1355949952' post='5012584']
As long as models share the same skeleton, then animations for one model will work for all. But if you are just prototyping, why bother with animations at all? this fluff is unnecessary for game play prototyping, in most cases. Does it really matter if the model appears to be walking ? or could a simple translation suffice for prototyping?
[/quote]
I'd suppose to simple translation will work. I don't really care about animations right now, I find more important just getting the logic to work and get things acting as I want them too. Like moving, jumping, shooting, simple enemy with AI type stuff. Probably set a very simple level for my character to walk on and interact with, most likely it will be just a plain for now.
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Construct Two is great for quick prototyping. If I have a fun game idea I want to try out, I can hop into construct two, make some quick placeholder art, drag and drop, do some minimal programming, and bang: I have a playable prototype that I can use to see if my base mechanic is fun. The free version is great for prototyping also, when you're prototyping you [b]never[/b] reach the event limit.
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Also, get a journal. I currently have more than twenty pages of journal entries about my current game, detailing my classes, their responsibilities, how I'll handle physics, collision, shading, the basic game mechanics. It's the best way to organize ideas for me.
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[url="http://www.gamefromscratch.com/page/3D-Game-Engine-Round-up.aspx"]Game Engines List[/url], as was recommended earlier, Unity is a good choice.

[url="http://opengameart.org/"]Source for free assets[/url] to get you started, although if you go Unity, it has an included asset stores.


As to animations transfering, you can create a base animation system ( called a Rig ), and apply animations using it, and transfer those animations between different models. This stuff is pretty heady stuff though, 3D modelling and animation is a profession of it's own after all. But from a technical perspective, yes, you can transfer animations between low and high res models, its a pretty common practice actually.
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