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SiN
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« Reply #795 on: September 28, 2009, 12:10:00 AM »

Oh don't give me that "option" bullshit! That's just a sugar-coated way of saying, "I can't make up my mind so I'll let the player figure it out." Make a decision and run with it. If it looks good, stick it in there. Technically it might not make sense, but then again, technically analog sticks and thousands of particles didn't exist in 1982 either. Smiley  I don't think motion blur will ruin the 1982 atmosphere.

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binary zoo mobile developer | 32x32 . duotrix . geomex . smiley's shooty adventure . by caffeine monster software | my blog
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« Reply #796 on: September 28, 2009, 09:42:50 AM »

Quote
Oh don't give me that "option" bullshit! That's just a sugar-coated way of saying, "I can't make up my mind so I'll let the player figure it out." Make a decision and run with it.

I'm affraid i have the opposite opinion to Sin.   Grin

If you're unsure as to what to do, then give the user the option.

In fact, i'm of the opinion that to give the user as many options as possible is usualy the best policy.  You may end up releasing patches at some future date, to address certain issues a user included option might have adressed in the first place.

Experience has shown me that you cant please everyone, no matter what you do, so provide user customisation where possible.   Smiley

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fog
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« Reply #797 on: September 28, 2009, 11:34:07 AM »

Well I'm going to agree and disagree with both of you lol Smiley

I don't see putting an option in for something as automatically being a cop out otherwise you would never have options for screen flashing, joypad rumble, gamma settings etc.  But I also don't like putting in options just to keep everyone happy.  When you see the graphics you might appreciate why a motion blur option is appropriate here whereas it wasn't in E+.   Having said that, I still haven't decided whether to include an option or not.  Plenty of time for that.  Smiley

Technically it might not make sense, but then again, technically analog sticks and thousands of particles didn't exist in 1982 either. Smiley  I don't think motion blur will ruin the 1982 atmosphere.
Well yeah, technically I'm doing a few things that weren't possible in 1982 lol.  Think of this as more of a stylised remake of games of that era. Smiley
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SiN
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« Reply #798 on: September 28, 2009, 04:15:15 PM »

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Well yeah, technically I'm doing a few things that weren't possible in 1982 lol.  Think of this as more of a stylised remake of games of that era. Smiley
Yeah, that's what I thought you were up to. Smiley

Which plays to my point further, right? You're doing a stylized remake, so you're allowed to add some "graphical enhancements" here and there. I suspect 1982 is more about what you remember games were like back in the day, as opposed to how it really was.

Quote
When you see the graphics you might appreciate why a motion blur option is appropriate here whereas it wasn't in E+.
Oh sure. I guess it'd help to see the thing. Smiley

All I'm saying is that if you can't make up your mind on the aesthetic, putting in an option is a bad idea. I'd rather you just make up your mind. Smiley Less is more, etc.

If you're putting the option in because you suspect a portion of the audience will be put off by the motion blur, then yeah, by all means put in the option. But if you're doing this, I'd recommend a "none/low/normal motion blur" option and default it to low, just like we did for DUOtrix.

Flashing, rumble, gamma are the types of things are all proper "game-breakers" and/or sources of frustration/discomfort. That's why they are options. If you think the motion blur in 1982 falls under the same category, by all means go for it.


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binary zoo mobile developer | 32x32 . duotrix . geomex . smiley's shooty adventure . by caffeine monster software | my blog
fog
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« Reply #799 on: September 28, 2009, 06:49:07 PM »

Which plays to my point further, right? You're doing a stylized remake, so you're allowed to add some "graphical enhancements" here and there. I suspect 1982 is more about what you remember games were like back in the day, as opposed to how it really was.
Correct.  Oh and as oddbob0 pointed out on Twitter all CRT's back then had motion blur...that's my current excuse anyway Smiley

Oh sure. I guess it'd help to see the thing. Smiley
To the playtesting forum then...

If you're putting the option in because you suspect a portion of the audience will be put off by the motion blur, then yeah, by all means put in the option.
On the contrary, I think most people if not everyone will prefer the motion blur version.  I think I've just confused myself here really because the original aesthetic was clean and, well look at the pics in Playtesting and you might see the cause of my dilemma.


I'm fairly convinced which way I'm going now because the game has morphed from what I intended somewhat.  Rather than the simpler stripped down game I'd originally envisaged, it's now a case of throwing loads of enemies on screen, giving the player massive firepower and well, doing what I normally do basically  BunnyMonkey!
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fog
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« Reply #800 on: September 29, 2009, 12:51:43 PM »

Got a couple of the new powerups in 1982 now and it's helped shape the gameplay a lot, pushing it in a slightly different direction.  

Each powerup has 3 separate functions so balancing the usefulness of these will be essential to add a strategic element to their use.  Make one function much more useful than the other and the player will just use that one every time effectively making the whole multi-use element pointless.

I also have 6 different enemy types in too out of a planned 20 or so and that's added a bit more variety to testing meaning it's now fairly enjoyable.  Although right now the different waves of enemies are just randomly generated so I need to decide how I'm gong to structure that.  Right now I'm leaning towards a predefined waves system that would fall somewhere between those in DUO and Echoes.  That would be the predefined waves of DUO but without the break between levels as in Echoes so the action never lets up.  Undecided yet.

Anyway here's an example of the truly stunning, cutting edge graphics we can expect in 1982.  Time to upgrade your PC's and pray that the Xbox360 has the power to handle such awesomeness.  BunnyMonkey!



* 1982_title.png (0.76 KB, 268x119 - viewed 268 times.)
« Last Edit: September 29, 2009, 12:53:18 PM by fog » Logged

fog
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« Reply #801 on: September 30, 2009, 11:02:04 AM »

Well we now have 3 different powerup types in and partly working.  As mentioned earlier they each have multiple uses and I haven't got all of those working yet, although the new bits I have got working have pretty much convinced me to continue developing this idea.

And we also have little humans being abducted which you are supposed to save.  I say supposed to as killing them is worryingly satisfying too  Tongue

It's not going to win any awards, but as a quick little project (all things are relative) it's enjoyable enough. 

What I really need to do now is work out how the scoring and bonus multiplier is going to work.  I'm more of a "game completest" than a "score chaser" myself so I may need some guidance on what people like in a score based game and specifically a score multiplier Smiley
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« Reply #802 on: October 01, 2009, 09:49:49 AM »

All very interesting.

I've still no idea what sort of game it is your making.

Sounds a bit Defender ish.   Grin

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fog
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« Reply #803 on: October 01, 2009, 11:55:19 AM »

I've still no idea what sort of game it is your making.

Sounds a bit Defender ish.   Grin
More of a fixed screen Space Invaders / Galaxian affair with bits of Centipede, Asteroids and loads of other shit thrown in.  And it is literally thrown in right now.   BunnyMonkey!
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fog
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« Reply #804 on: October 01, 2009, 04:44:18 PM »

A couple more enemy types in and things are getting a bit too chaotic now.  We generally like chaos, but in this game too much of it and the tactical use of the powerups around which much of the gameplay is based, becomes impossible.

Anyway it's not a problem really.  Right now there is no level structure or anything and the enemy waves are tossed out randomly meaning you get some odd combinations and sometimes just too many of the things on screen at once.  So what I need to do now is put in some way of defining the levels.

So that will be either:

a) totally predefined attack waves for the entire game (quite a chore) or
b) simply defining something like "Level X contains Enemy Types A,B & C" and then throwing random ones at the player.

Option (a)  sounds the most logical as it means better control over attack waves, in theory a better difficulty curve and it means every player experiences exactly the same game.  However that obviously means every game is predictable too and as I said earlier, we like a bit of chaos in our games so I'm leaning towards (b)

That just means putting a lot of hidden logic in the wave generation sequences as I have in Echoes to try and maintain a balanced difficulty and ensure you don't end up with silly situations like no asteroids and 3 huge Suns on screen.

Time to experiment...
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fog
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« Reply #805 on: October 01, 2009, 10:50:06 PM »

Well I have a bonus multiplier system in and working properly now and I like it.  We had a little discussion on the Playtesters board and I'm not sure it will be to everyone's taste on the merry team of testers but that's what testing is for.

I doubt they've played anything with a multiplier system that works in exactly this way though so it should be interesting.  So what I'm saying is it might be crap, but at least it's original.  Smiley

And if nothing else, Man is happy.


* Man3.gif (0.54 KB, 32x44 - viewed 240 times.)
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fog
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« Reply #806 on: October 03, 2009, 02:35:51 PM »

So I now have 2 of the 3 uses for a few of the powerups in 1982 working now.  Each powerup has 3 uses and a big part of the gameplay is using the appropriate one at the right time.  With a couple of alternative uses in now I can see how that strategic element works....and it does.

Next I need to tackle the Plasma powerup as that currently does nothing at all. Smiley

And I've added another couple of enemy types that are a bit different from the previous ones which have all been dumb cannon fodder so far.  The new enemies helping to make strategic use of the powerups more important.

Hmm.  All this talk of "strategy" makes this sound like a thoughtful shooter and it's really just about the most mindless blasting action imaginable.  Smiley
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JDog053
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« Reply #807 on: October 04, 2009, 02:04:03 AM »

I'm eager! Its shaping up to be a cool game. And with your engine up and running, it hasn't even taken you long Smiley As for strategy, ill have to wait and see, because the best strategy may not be one youd even considered...

Although you doing what your doing, has made me focus a little more on Pixel Art, so expect something from me before Christmas Cheesy
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fog
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« Reply #808 on: October 04, 2009, 02:31:27 PM »

As for strategy, ill have to wait and see, because the best strategy may not be one youd even considered...
Quite possibly.  I've already discovered a couple of slightly different uses.  If you activate the laser at the top of the screen it's a cool way of taking out enemies early, but if you use the laser at the bottom of the screen it shields the player from any bombs being dropped.  It's best to let the player discover these little things for themselves I think as using them appropriately is quite satisfying Smiley

And we now have 3 different types of Centipede style enemies in so that gives us a little bit more variety.

Although you doing what your doing, has made me focus a little more on Pixel Art, so expect something from me before Christmas Cheesy
Cool Smiley
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fog
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« Reply #809 on: October 05, 2009, 12:35:10 PM »

It's amazing what a difference a seemingly minor design change can make.  Previously when you shot a saucer and it dropped a powerup you had to catch the falling powerup to collect and activate it. All pretty standard you would think and the way most games handle things.

In the context of 1982 though that just didn't feel right.  You were either sat there waiting for it while there was a ton of stuff on screen that needed killing, or you made a last gasp dash across the screen to catch it and either end up crashing into loads of enemies on the way, or getting there just too late to catch it.

So I've modified things slightly.  The powerups now land on the ground where they stay for a short while before expiring.  It's just 3 short seconds, but it makes a huge difference as you can now generally sweep them up during your normal movements across the screen.

Echoes+ is going through the Creators Club playtest & Peer Review process so there isn't anything else I can do with that ATM so I'll continue on with 1982.  I think in a day or two I'll upload a very early demo for playtesters to have a blast on.  It will be far from balanced and have little in the way of proper level structure, but some reassurance that I'm on the right path will be good Smiley
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