Sunday, August 28, 2016

Weekly update #2

Been working on the Greyhound attachments, like the barrier and the camera. The barrier is three rectangles arranged to cover a semi circle around a Greyhound to block incoming enemy bullets and also interacts using the ragdoll physics and the rigidbody component of the Greyhound. It can be picked up by simply flying into it and dropped by holding both RB and LB for a few seconds. Once picked up, it orients itself in the direction the player is aiming and blocks incoming enemy bullets and also interacts as a physical collider. Player bullets pass through it and it never wears out. It remains attached to a particular Greyhound rather than a player when docked. When it is unattached and floating in space or when a Greyhound is docked, it folds itself up and looks like a bar with two small bars on top of it.

The camera can be picked up by flying into and allows the rider to control the game camera. The camera can be zoomed in and out, told to follow a particular Greyhound rider or Big Bird. Perhaps other modes, like stay fixed on a boss, or complete manual control, or setting an offset to the object it's following, will be added. It also currently stays with a Greyhound when docked and can be dropped by RB + LB.

Fixed some bugs with enemy target selection and with enemy bullets colliding with the Alerter Big Bird collider.

Made the weapon/holster system more flexible using a List instead of an Array, made the default weapon (machine gun), have infinite clip size and slowed down its firing rate. So now the reload animation doesn't play, but also don't have to worry about indicating to a player when they need to reload or are low on bullets.

Added in Greyhound dying and Greyhound hurt sounds from Jordan. Learned valuable, somewhat obvious lesson from the Game Design Dojo podcasts that putting in placeholder sounds can help with debugging. So I did add a shooting sound and will start adding more placeholder sounds.

Big Tetros (not Mega Tetros) are now destructible and go semi transparent with a high drag surface effector being turned on. Not sure about this, may prefer to split a Big Tetro into Little Tetros.

Some old and some new ideas:
- Tetros spawn rubies, emeralds, sapphires in proportion to their RGB ints.
- Steal mechanic idea from Overcooked for doing dock prep for incoming Greyhounds
- Make peg riders a thing
- Probably go with HUD for water and solar energy, since tanks don't look good on Orca, at the moment.
- Need to make alternate river splits.
- The solar tank bar could lower its max capacity each time it sustains damage, until reaching a port, where it could then be repaired to its original max capacity.
- Tail station boost and reverse
- Need to put back in Greyhound rider cooperative harpooning and just fix harpooning

Anyway, lots of other stuff. Trying to decide when/if to take family money to commit myself to video game design and programming or to continue doing this part time for the next  6 months. I'm feeling ok about the amount of work I got done this week, not great. I did cancel my test night scheduled for tomorrow, since I'm moving on Tuesday. Hopefully, the move will go well and I'll be able to get some good work in this week. Plus, it's labor day weekend, a great weekend for hard labor.

Sunday, August 21, 2016

Weekly Update #1

Hello, time for the weekly update! This is my first Sunday update. My plan is to update every Sunday. The biggest, recent news is that Jordan Gray has provided some sound effects that I plan to work into the game over the next week. They're mostly dog dying sound effects, which is a downer, but remember, the contemplation of death often bears fruit for the living of life! Lately, I've been working on redoing a lot of the code to make it easier for me to rework and rebalance the mechanics of  Big Bird. The other big project was redoing the level generation to include a procedurally generated air river. The plan is that the river will give general guidance to the players, but better players will know when it's a good idea to venture off river. This may work in conjunction with a hydration system, where coasting in the air river costs little to no fuel (note that it's not a water river), but going off river will begin to consume water. The idea is to place floating watering holes around the map and then place water drops on the map proportional to their proximity to a floating watering hole.

The other big thing I've working on since the June demo night has been the tutorial level. It's not procedurally generated, but rather is a hand crafted cave area. It begins with a few cooperation required doors and buttons, which seem glitchy. There's some enemies I'm calling leeches that only attack Big Bird if he's got a water tank attached, and even then, the basic (and currently only) type does no damage, but simply sucks water out and its sack grows. When killed, all the water can be regathered by Big Bird. Then there's some dudes throwing spinning rocks across the corridors you're trying to get through. These are a new damage type that dismount the rider, but do not kill the greyhound.

Destructible environments and threatening environments are things I'd like to implement soon. Work on the store and Big Bird cargo hold/fork lift, then a few bosses, a few more enemy types, then menus, and then polish that for a while. That's my general outline.