Monday, December 3, 2012


A few days ago I got our small enemies to actually do damage to our main character! Wait! I'm not as cool as that sounds. I didn't write the artificial intelligence. I just wrote the part when the enemy attacks. Literally just made a function and called it when the AI is supposed to attack. Why am I so happy about this? Because the game is actually playable now. We can kill enemies and they can kill us! It is a game!

We have our alpha deadline coming up this Thursday. There are still a few things that we as a team need to finish implementing. I for one would like to clean up the control scheme so it doesn't interfere with our current attacking system.

Once we get to alpha, we'll still have a long ways to go to completion but it will be a great spot to see how far we've come since the prototype. I foresee a lot of play testing.

Thursday, November 29, 2012


I haven't abandoned ship. Quite the opposite, I have been busy working on the game. We have been working on our level editor for the past month. That is what I have spent most of my time working on. While I think our editor is pretty amazing ( I am proud of what we have made ) there are a lot of problems with it. I'll just come out and say it. The editor is not stable. It will break several different ways.

Part of the issue was that I was trying to edit our level models in a different approach than how Scott had initially set the editor to function. The confusion arose because we basically held two different models of our level in memory at the same time. One model is the loaded file. The other model is the constructed stage and actors from the file. I was editing the file, because it was the first representation I saw. (Clearly not brilliant on my part) Scott was editing the stage and the actors on the stage.  I'd like to think that a lot of the bugs I introduced where from this lack of understanding. (and not my poor programming skills)

I have since conformed and began the process of cleaning up my code to be consistent with the other editing functions. This will hopefully clean up the code, remove some errors and make our editor more stable.

I have spent a good amount of time working on what we've called the properties panel, designed by Shandice. Basically when you select an actor the property panel will show the properties of that actor. A recently added the position and rotation values of actors so they can be set to specific and consistent values. Before I added this it would have been near impossible to set an actor perfectly on the zero plane for the Y axis. I am starting to feel like I am contributing to the project. There is still a lot of work ahead. Tomorrow is another day. I'll try to report more frequently.


Thursday, November 8, 2012


If you couldn't tell, I love megaman. It is one of my favorite game series. I always wonder why I love it so much. Why am I willing to play megaman 1-10 when they are the exact same game. The mechanics haven't changed much. The graphics haven't changed. Some bosses feel like they just have a new skin. Why am I playing the same game over and over?

The mechanics of megaman are brilliant. To me, it is just fun. Jumping, shooting, dodging, and sliding all to kill the boss at the end and unlock a new ability. I love when you first try a new level, you have to react to everything. You're first attempt is all about your raw skill. If you're like me, you'll fail a few times before completing the level. Which means, you are going to have to play through the level again. On these subsequent play through the game is more about memory. I love shooting at where I know an enemy is going to be before it appears on screen. This is an important aspect of the series, the game lets me challenge myself. The challenge of games makes them fun. With megaman, if it gets too easy, I can challenge myself by only using the regular buster shot on a boss opposed to using that boss' weakness. The main point I am making is that the game mechanics in megaman are fun. I would play and pay for a new megaman because the game is fun.

I almost forgot! The music!


Friday, November 2, 2012


This weekend I will be spending some time working on our level editor. Scott has made an incredible editor already but there are still a few features we need to add. One of my  favorite features that has already been implemented is the ability to play the level straight from the editor. I continue to be impresses with Scott's work. Scott built most of the current engine. He has a really simple design that I should explain briefly.

Basically there is a stage. The stage has actors on it. Actors have several properties. For example a physics object or an agent. There is obvious a lot more to the engine then this but this is just a basic overview.

I am working on editing the actor's agents. We want to be able to add agents, remove agents, and edit the actor's current agents. I haven't spend a lot of time studying the editor, so that is where I am going to spend a few hours before I code anything.

Saturday, October 20, 2012

Heroes of Rock!

Our class decided on three games! TimeJump is not one of them. It was fun thinking and working on that game. The three games that got picked are: Attraction, Ninja Royal and Heroes of Rock. As you can probably tell I am working on Heroes of Rock!

Heroes of Rock is an awesome idea. Our team has decided the three pillars of our game will be using the guitar peripheral, action and music. The game is going to be a 2.5D action platformer that you'll want to use the guitar for controls. Personally, I think it will be challenging to find the perfect control scheme for this game. I want it to feel like you're playing the guitar while destroying creatures and exploring the world. I am excited put some work into this game.

The project I was assigned to work on is to make the save function in the level editor actually write the correct values to a file. We really want to get the editor up and running so we can start building levels easier. There have been a few challenges getting this function to work properly. The first challenge is my lack of knowledge with this code base. I'll overcome this obstacle by simply working with the code. Eventually I will learn the code and functions, it just takes time. The second challenge is a little more technical. I need to convert a quaternion to euler's angles. I haven't done this before so I am going to have to research the problem before I start hacking at the code. Overall, I was giving a pretty simple assignment.

I am working with some great engineers. I am going to learn a lot by working with them. I hope I don't step on anyone's toes.

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Second Round of Pitches

We just had our second round of pitches. Eight teams pitched there game ideas, each game has a prototype and has started to find their art direction. I think our whole class has done some amazing work already. I would be happy to work on any of the games! With that being said, I really want to make the game my team pitched. Time Jump! (working title!) We have found a game that can use it's game play  mechanics to share the story. That is my favorite way to experience story in games. Shadow of the Colossus is a great game and a good example of playing the story. I'll stop rambling now. Best of luck to all the games. Hope we pick the best of the best.

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Swinging Is Hard

I love the game my team and I are coming up with. I see a lot of potential with it, but it is going to take a lot of work. The work load is already difficult. Building a simple prototype of the game and its mechanics is a challenge. Especially implementing a good swinging mechanic. I have tried a few different approaches to building a good hookshot and each one has fallen short of what I consider a decent working mechanic. I am going to keep tweaking around with my best implementation, maybe I'll find the right balance there. I might have to scratch this current iteration and start over.

I know things are only going to get harder. It is a good thing I am having fun.