Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Putting Shadows Aside

I've spent about the past two weeks, off and on, figuring out how to work with shaders (GLSL).  This feature which was just added to Game Maker recently will allow the game to draw dynamic shadows, proper directional light off of surfaces, and most importantly, create a field of view around the character that prevents the player from seeing through walls and solid objects.

GLSL is a whole other programming language that I have never used before.  I got my hands dirty with it a little bit, but I'm putting it aside for now, as it is going to take a lot longer to get shadows just right, and I feel that it is not needed at this point in development.  There are many other things that need to be worked on that can be done a lot quicker and are main gameplay elements, and while shadows may look cool, they can be added plenty later.

However, this time was not wasted.  I learned that in order to incorporate the type of shading I want in the game later, I had to change the way I draw the world and players now.

Anyway, time to start hashing out the following:
  • A working inventory, screen and hotbar
  • Worldly items one can pick up
  • A moving "monster" object
Also, Moss now has access to writing to the blog.  So, I'm going to have to end off properly...

Over and out,
- Trevor

Thursday, September 12, 2013

What? An update?!

This game is getting a revamp/overhaul/face lift/reboot/remake/do over.  Its no longer a side-scroller, it's a top down Rougelike.  Most of my ideas are staying the same, but I'm simplifying the game mechanics.  In fact, the game as you know it has been dropped.  This is a "new game".  I'm not taking it on alone anymore; I have nothing I want to prove.  I'm dragging my good friend and awesome artist, Sam "Moss" Mameli, down with me on this wonderful ride.  He's agreed to take on the art, leaving me to focus on the code, and we brainstorm and video chat weekly about the project and game mechanics.  Actually, it's been exactly one month since we have stated collaborating.

I'm going to revamp this blog to follow the "new game".  It's late, so I wont post much of what's been done (which isn't much yet).  Don't worry if you liked what the old game featured - the new game will still build random dungeons and still will focus on multiplayer game play and precious loot.  Also Game Maker Studio has had some major updates and now includes multiplayer support and shaders (I'm excitied!), so I can do everything I planned to do without having to wait for more features.

So far, I've gotten a working multiplayer server that allows multiple people to join the server, move around the world of basic walls, and collisions now work better than it ever did in the old game.

Moss can not play test the "game" yet.  I want and have the capability of releasing for PC and Mac, but of course, Apple wants a piece of the pie so to speak before I can even test for Mac, and with Moss on the fence about whether or not he will be upgrading to a new laptop, I'll wait before forking over the cash to one of my favorite money grabbing corporations.

That said, I need some folks soon to run the program with me, try to connect, and see what kind of issues may arise (I want to see what role latency will play).  I know some of you out there are interested.  If so, and you use a PC, get a free version of Game Maker Lite on Steam.  This will let you subscribe to our game (when I put it up for testing), download automatic updates, and play test without me trying to host an executable file somewhere.  If you do this, let me know, and we will arrange some testing!

Good night...