Monthly Archives: September 2010

Plan Ahead

September 23, 2010 hydroxy

As some one who did little to no planning on this project, I’d just like to say that planning and preparation are very important parts of coding that could have made this project much easier. However, I would also like to point out that having a no idea of what the game is ultimately going to turn out like is very liberating and opens up so many more doors to creative thinking. I think in the end, I’m sort of glad I didn’t plan everything in stone before starting the project as I’ve came across many great ideas that I didn’t have at the start and I’ve also enjoyed looking at my game like an evolving work of art that I can shape into anything I want. In the end I think more preparation would have made the coding easier but it could have made the end product something completely different. I’m not really sure what to make of it.

On a separate note I’d just like to say, that I think its really important that you look after your health when coding a game or doing anything similar, its easy to get obsessed with just working and staying up all night, eating fast foods, neglecting social activities, and so on… but I’ve found that doing things like this will ultimately hinder the progress of coding, maybe its just me but I think much better when I feel fit and healthy.

Anyway, talking of sleep I think I just might hit the hay right now, then after that I’m heading off to bed. Thanks for reading

Sights and Sounds

September 23, 2010 hydroxy
todays_special_chargrilled_robot

As you can see in the image above I’ve begun adding some better graphics to the game, I’ve created some myself and I’ve temporarily borrowed some from elsewhere but only until I replace them with my own ones, I really dislike plagiarism of others work so this is only a temporary solution. Anywho, just look at how much better the game looks with the new tile sets on display.

I’ve also added some sound effects to the game, before I was playing it in complete silence which bugged the hell out of me, so I went over to Super Flash Bros. Retro Sound Effects Generator to create some of my own, which make the game a lot more fun to play. I’m glad to say its really starting to feel like a proper game now with the new media added into it.

In other news I’ve started to really play about with the idea of adding an inventory system to the game, with items such as the power-ups (time stop, time slow, gravity stopper, etc…) becoming collectible items that can be used whenever the player wants to. Coding this into the game will most likely be complicated though, however I’m sure I can think of a way to implement it. That’s always the case with these type of things, you think they are way to complicated to code but somehow after many hours of working and thinking on the problem you suddenly just get how to solve the problem and can’t understand how you didn’t think of it before.

Thanks for reading, got to get back to the coding

Spelunking Some Time Away

September 17, 2010 hydroxy

I’m really starting to appreciate the game programmers of the world now, especially the one man armies who make games solo. One game programmer I really appreciate is Derek Yu, creator of a really cool indie game called Spelunky.

the_game_of_one_thousand_deaths

Although the game has a very steep difficulty curve, it definitely does pay off to get good at it, as its a highly enjoyable and unique game, it would be best described as video gaming’s Indiana Jones, as it certainly plays like it and even has a few cunning references to the films (check out the Crystal Skull in the image above). Its definitely a must play for anyone involved in the indie gaming scene.

Power-Up Time

September 17, 2010 hydroxy

fricking_laser

Now that I’ve got the essentials of the game down I’m focusing more of my energy towards the power-up system. This is actually quite fun to do as I’ve found out that editing a few lines of code in a small way can change gameplay drastically e.g. turning off gravity will give the player the ability to fly, and so on… I’ve created a few power-ups already and I’ve got a few ideas for other, but I’m focusing on not making the entire game about power-ups, it should be about making good gameplay fullstop. Anywho, so far I’ve implemented invincibility, anti-gravity, time dilation and time freezing, with each power-up being accessed by colliding with a coloured block. I hope to rework this system in the future, instead making these power-ups items that can be picked up and carried around to be used whenever the player wants them. Hopefully that extra freedom with power-ups will allow for some interesting level designs and better puzzles in the future. Anywho, that’s all for now folks, thanks for reading.

Project Bloc – More Details

September 11, 2010 hydroxy
snug_as_a_block_on_a_rock

Here is a screenshot from the game as it is at the minute, this is what I see when I’m play testing. Obviously a major graphics overhaul is needed but the image’s main purpose is to show my progress in the game so far. Click the image to get a larger version if you want.

So as you can see, the game is a platformer, you control that little block-like character in the middle of the image on the stairs, he’s a robot (obviously). So far I’ve near enough mastered the game’s physics and added a few other bits and pieces here and there along the way including:

  • moving security lasers that kill the player instantly
  • a time dilation powerup that slows down time for a short while
  • a time stopping powerup that stops time for a short while
  • invulnerability powerup that makes character impervious to damage for a short time
  • a teleport that can move the character to any another area in the game
  • switch boxes that reverse colours and solidity every time the control box is impacted
  • time boxes that reverse solidity regularly, providing temporary platforms for the player
  • and many more…
As you can see the game is coming together quite nicely, my only real issues are that I need to improve my art skills fast to get a nice end product and that I need to stay focused on the task at hand and set a deadline to finish the game by, hopefully sometime before Christmas