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MehdiUBP

How do you make your game feel dynamic and explosive ?

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Hello !

I've been using Unity to make games for quite a while now, and though I've made a lot of progresses, my games always seem flabby, slacky, too soft. And here, I am talking gameplay. The video may help to understand what I mean.

Hence the question: What are the pratices used to make a game feel fast, dynamic ?

Thanks for all the answers !

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You can change the feel of of a game without altering the fundamental mechanics by polishing how the game responds to your actions.

I found this video very good:

As for your game, hard to say without playing it or seeing more. The player in question isn't doing very well, which makes the game look less fun than it might actually be, if they were slicing up opponents without taking a hit I'd say the opposite...

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I think there is something, that looks "off" indeed.

Don't get me wrong, based on the action in the video the game seems to be fun to play, but the animations of the characters and their actual transformations (position, rotation) with respect to their velocity seem to be totally disconnected and makes the game look/feel somewhat "broken".

I don't know if this was intentional to achieve a cartoon-y feel like in Tom and Jerry and similar toons where characters moves fast but usually they are "stuck" in place when starting run as an example. Even if this was the goal it did not work out, that way. For that look you need to have way "jucyer"
animations and transformations, which is pretty well showcased in the video posted by rip-off

If you are looking for a somewhat realistic movement and fight scenes, you have to either slow down your animations, for e.g.: the player character seems to do dozens of steps in a short time (less than a sec) but seems to move a few centimeters only! and make your characters slide less and rotate less while not animating (e.g.: have an animation specific for changing directions).
Another way is to speed up the game, so the animation speeds stay the same, but the characters move, turn, and attack a lot faster and move greater distances in shorter time so that again it matches their looks, but this approach requires game-logic modification and re-balancing if it already plays well.

Hope this helps :);)
Br.

Edited by Spidi

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14 hours ago, MehdiUBP said:

seem flabby, slacky, too soft ... What are the pratices used to make a game feel fast, dynamic

Good animations are critical.

In your clips, the character starts running long before they start moving at a similar speed. Faster reactions and motions may help what you describe.  It looks like the characters may be running on an extremely slick surface like ice.

Also in your clips, higher dynamic motion gives a huge difference in feel.  I happened to be reading an old article on pixel art today that had a short section demonstrating it.  Scroll down to the part about "... To demonstrate what I’m driving at, let’s put SFIV’s animation under the microscope." Dynamic animations make an enormous difference, but unless you're trained to see them it may be difficult to understand it.  Small variations in posture or motion can make an enormous difference in the way animations feel.

In that regard, your animations are mild with very little energy. Five seconds into the clip your character takes what appears to be a minor blow, but it knocks him back seven body widths. He has no reaction to being blown back so far, just being bent over a small amount like he has an upset stomach.

Both issues could be resolved with better animation.  The running doesn't need to change the start of running speed, but an animation showing the character throwing their body to gaining momentum. The animation of taking a body blow could be exaggerated from simply bending over to an enormous blow that knocks his body, sword, and clothing. 

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Again, watching a video is a different experience from actually playing the game, but looks like a big improvement to me - well done! Just the movement alone looks way better, it gives the entire thing a different feel I think.

Is the game playing a bit more like what you were looking for now?

A potentially simple thing to look into is toning down or changing the particle effect when somebody is hit - it looks a bit like an explosion at the moment.

I'm not an animator, but the sword attack animations look like they could use some attention. That said, I would also say that the player's kick attack looks more dangerous - where it looked a bit too weak before.

Have you playtested the game with anyone? Would it be hard to package up a demo? Soliciting feedback about videos, while better than nothing, will tend to result in a focus overly on the visual impact and will not give you as much insight into the interactions.

As an example, imagine if people could have given feedback on Tetris during development. The game is aesthetically simple and arguably even boring to watch, but actually playing it is a different experience altogether! But the feedback Alexey Pajitnov might have gotten would not have been about gameplay (e.g. the ability to commit a shapes position and drop it immediately), but rather would naturally be on the more superficial elements.

Finally, remember we lack a lot of context about the game. I don't know if this is the only mode, or if there might be others. I don't know what kind of enemies you're thinking of having, nor what kind of levels and level elements. Will there be multiplayer? I don't even know whether it is a purely action game, or if there might be other aspects (e.g. stealth mechanics). Fleshing out your vision might help us understand what you're aiming for and whether that is coming through to us.

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I like the animation improvements as well. The characters no longer look like they're running on a slippery surface, and the motions are more dynamic/energetic.

There is still much to be done with transitions, but the animations give a good place to work from.

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On 7/9/2017 at 11:18 AM, frob said:

Good animations are critical.

In your clips, the character starts running long before they start moving at a similar speed. Faster reactions and motions may help what you describe.  It looks like the characters may be running on an extremely slick surface like ice.

Also in your clips, higher dynamic motion gives a huge difference in feel.  I happened to be reading an old article on pixel art today that had a short section demonstrating it.  Scroll down to the part about "... To demonstrate what I’m driving at, let’s put SFIV’s animation under the microscope." Dynamic animations make an enormous difference, but unless you're trained to see them it may be difficult to understand it.  Small variations in posture or motion can make an enormous difference in the way animations feel.

In that regard, your animations are mild with very little energy. Five seconds into the clip your character takes what appears to be a minor blow, but it knocks him back seven body widths. He has no reaction to being blown back so far, just being bent over a small amount like he has an upset stomach.

Both issues could be resolved with better animation.  The running doesn't need to change the start of running speed, but an animation showing the character throwing their body to gaining momentum. The animation of taking a body blow could be exaggerated from simply bending over to an enormous blow that knocks his body, sword, and clothing. 

Thanks

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