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Jesse Chounard

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  1. Jesse Chounard

    [iOS] Hypership Out of Control

    [font="Verdana"] For the last few months, I've been working with another developer (Kris Steele of Fun Infused Games) to port his game from Xbox Indies (XNA) to iOS. It's called Hypership Out of Control! Everything is finished, and approved by Apple. [/font][font="Verdana"][s]It's already available for sale in some areas, and will be available in the US tonight around midnight EST.[/s][/font] [font="Verdana"]Update: Hypership is out! Link to the iTunes page: [/font][font="Verdana, Geneva, Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif"]http://tinyurl.com/Hypership[/font] [font="Verdana"] [/font] [font="Verdana"]If you’re a journalist who writes about iOS/mobile games and you’re interested in obtaining a review copy, please send me a note. (Private message here, or hit the contact form on my website: http://thirdpartyninjas.com/blog/ ) [/font][font="Verdana"] Here are some screens: Thanks for taking a look. I'd love to hear your feedback. [/font]
  2. Jesse Chounard

    More demo stuff...

    I'm not a C# expert myself, I've just been scouring my own code to get rid of garbage collection issues so that it run smoother on the 360. That said, I think I misunderstood how some of your code was working (because the Sprite class was over in a different assembly that I wasn't looking at.) You should grab the CLRProfiler: http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/details.aspx?familyid=86ce6052-d7f4-4aeb-9b7a-94635beebdda&displaylang=en And Reflector: http://www.aisto.com/roeder/dotnet/ Plus the Reflexil add-in for Reflector: http://sourceforge.net/projects/reflexil/ Using the latter two, I was able to export all the source for your game, and rebuild it with faster speed and invulnerability. (I was testing what the absolute highest score possible was.) I think you'll like playing with them.
  3. Jesse Chounard

    More demo stuff...

    Since I haven't really played around with using the CLRProfiler or Reflector on anyones code but mine, I thought I'd take a look at yours. The first thing I notice is that your program is generating alot of garbage. It looks like the big culprit is the Color arrays in Collision.PixelCollision. Instead of creating all that data on the heap each time you check for collisions (Arrays are always created on the heap) you could create a buffer big enough to hold any single frame of animation when you initialize the sprite. Then only update the contents of the buffer when necessary when necessary. Hope you don't mind this sort of feedback.
  4. Jesse Chounard

    More demo stuff...

    26095 on my first play through. I got really lucky and got double bullets and upgraded firing speed right off the bat. It makes getting a high multiplier really easy. I don't like the bullets colliding with things that have already exploded. Something felt weird there. Otherwise, it's really fun. :)
  5. Jesse Chounard

    Animation Editor

    So, I'm getting started on a 4E6 entry. My biggest gripe (and it's minor) with XNA as it exists now is the difficulty in working with the standard .Net Framework to build tools. Apparently this will all be cleaned up with XNA Game Studio Express 2.0, but it's somewhat annoying now. However, while you can't yet drop an XNA game window onto a .Net form, you can create one separately. So that's what I'm doing. That's my dead simple animation editor. You draw boxes around each frame you want, and then set the frame's origin. (In this case, I mean pivot point for rotation.) This information will be saved out into an xml layout that I've already built into the content pipeline. I'll be building a simple sprite editor next, then follow that up with a level editor.
  6. Jesse Chounard

    Fun Diversions

    Trillian will also do GoogleTalk, by installing the Jabber plug-in. I expect you need to have Trillian Pro, though. I registered years ago to install the Everquest plug-in. That's so sad. :)
  7. Jesse Chounard

    From the Executive Producer's Desk

    I second 7-Zip. I particularly like the compression I get in 7z (ultra) format.
  8. Jesse Chounard

    One hero, billions of baddies

    It's fun. Here's two pretty easy things that I think would make big improvements: 1) Analog player movement. Accelerate the ship based on the current position of the analog stick. It seems silly but it's a dramatic difference. 2) Curved enemy flight patterns. Take a look at some Bezier curve math, and have the enemies swoop in and out. (Like in Galaga.) I'm thinking I might work on an XNA horizontal scroller for 4e6 if the elements are such that it would work out.
  9. Jesse Chounard

    Pixel collision

    If the sprites don't have any animation, that's a great way to do it. The memory required blows up pretty quickly if you have lots of different animations, though. Since we're only looking at the alpha values, with a little precomputing, the data could be compressed down to a series of boolean values, and then stored as packed bits or run length encoded. But that's a little more work than I wanted to bother with, since I already had it working at a reasonable speed. I'm looking forward to playing your. Are you planning to add anything neat for playing with the 360 gamepad? Special abilities on the right thumb stick, maybe?
  10. Jesse Chounard

    Pixel collision

    Turns out that's really easy, if you're using code from the sample I pointed you to. I got it working with arbitrary translations, rotations, scaling, and animation. And there's little impact on frame rate as long as you check for bounding box collision before going pixel perfect. (You don't want to be copying the pixel data around every time you update animation frames.)
  11. Jesse Chounard

    More collision tests

    Unsurprisingly, you don't get much done on a project when you only spend a few hours a week on it. But that's fine, as when I do feel like working on it, I'm having alot of fun. I found a need for checking collisions with circles, so that's what I've been working on. I find it kind of sad that I've skipped over doing the low level graphics or audio systems by using XNA, but I'm still working on something that should be considered already solved. Circles vs. Line Segment Collision: If I add a little gravity, the circle slides nicely down the slope. And I'm handling the endpoints, so there's no gap, no matter which way you push the circle against the line. If anybody wants to see the source, just lemme know. It's not terribly complicated. This stuff is all mostly still from the N tutorials. I just recently learned that a version of N is coming to xbox live arcade. Happy times. On an unrelated note, I finished Bioshock last Sunday. (I didn't do much in my free time but play it once I got it.) Freaking fantastic. I'm looking forward to playing it again.
  12. Jesse Chounard

    Short video

    It looks fun. You need much more accurate collision detection, though. It's especially obvious when shooting at the bigger ships that the projectile is vanishing long before the actual pixels of the ship. The simplest solution would be to shrink the collision box, but it's not terribly hard to check for pixel-perfect collisions once you've detected a bounding box collision. I wrote a bit about what I'm using in my last dev journal entry, the sample code I used comes from here. (XNA Creators Club site.)
  13. Jesse Chounard


    Since posting my last entry, where I had a "playable" little platformer, I've had to go quite a bit backward to implement the features I want. (I put playable in quotes, because absolutely nothing happened when you collided with enemies. But you could jump around between platforms.) I've done two things that I think are interesting. 1) I've played around the the XNA Content Pipeline. I made a simple animation file format (currently it's just XML) that the pipeline can load up automatically like it can handle textures or meshes. It's not useful yet, but it's a neat experiment on how to add something to the pipeline. 2) Collision detection research. The collision detection I was using before was simply checking Rectangle.Intersects, and then moving the character back to prevent the collision. That's not terribly exciting, and certainly doesn't help at all with sloped surfaces. My plan is to use two methods of collision. Sprite vs. Platform collisions will be handled with the separating axis theorem (thanks for pointing that out Mr. Easily Confused), and bounding box plus nearly pixel-perfect collision for Sprite vs. Sprite collisions. Now for some "exciting" screenshots. You control one of the red boxes, using the arrow keys to move, and the A and D keys to rotate. The other red box will push you away on collision (SAT collisions) and collision with the big 'C' looking texture (nearly pixel-perfect) will just change the background to yellow. And here's the source code. It requires all of the XNA Game Studio Express stuff. I'm still trying to get my head fully wrapped around C#, plus it's just an experiment so don't expect the world's best code.
  14. Jesse Chounard


    Why the contempt for XNA? I'm rather enjoying using it myself, so I'm honestly curious.
  15. Jesse Chounard

    Time to have some fun

    It's been over two years since I've written an entry here, and that's entirely too long. That said, I've discovered an even scarier time period. It's been over seven years since I wrote a video game for fun that I shared with anyone. (Has it really been so long? I suddenly feel very old.) According to this page I submitted a game called Bugz for the Spritelib contest. (GDNet's first contest.) It's a pretty gross ripoff of the dropped-block games that were already old news in those days. I didn't do very well, and I don't recommend you download it. (However, you should go grab Happyland Adventures from Free Lunch Design. It was great at the end of the contest as one of the winners, and Johan ended up adding quite a bit to it. There was even a pretty good sized mod group for it.) A few years ago I designed a prototype Voltron Gameboy Advance game for the company I work for. (Yeah, I work for the company who created Voltron. There's a huge Voltron statue in the lobby.) Sadly it didn't end up going anywhere, but it gave me the chance to play around with GBA hardware and get paid for it. Since then, I got swept up in the idea of turning my game development into a business, and started trying to develop some casual games that I could make a few bucks on. The problem is that I don't even like most casual games. What's the point of developing games I don't like? I could just write database applications for alot more money. The guys over at the indiegamer forums have spent so much time arguing over whether or not it's okay to clone Bejeweled and laugh their way to the bank. I find the idea kind of sick, actually. But who am I to judge? The people playing those games don't seem to mind. In the end, I find I'm jealous of people like Stompy. His games are silly fun, people are playing them, and he's having a good time writing them. So I've made a decision. Game development is officially just a hobby for me again, and I'm going to enjoy it, dammit! First game project is going to be a simple platformer in XNA. And I think it's only fitting that I'm using graphics from Spritelib. Here's a little screen of what I've got so far: And here's one a little zoomed in, because it's hard to make out what's in there: I'll post a demo of the first level when I get that far. But no promises on a timeline. This is just my hobby, after all. :)
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