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TIGSource ForumsFeedbackDevLogsAEROBAT - absurdly high-speed arcade shmup-like
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Author Topic: AEROBAT - absurdly high-speed arcade shmup-like  (Read 11544 times)
Thew
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« on: March 22, 2014, 04:54:29 pm »



Hello tigfolk. I've been working on this for nearly a year now (started with a prototype for Ludum Dare 26), and figured I'd finally get around to making a devlog topic.

Basic idea: Boost to gain speed, jump to blast robots. Boosting longer means more speed, which means more jump height, which means higher combo, which means way more points.
Points are, of course, the greatest reward one could possibly desire.

LATEST UPDATE:
Way radder lasers and explosions!



Some art:




Still not sure how I want to release it (platforms, price, whether price should be non-zero, etc.), but I'm aiming to have a mostly-complete PC build in time to submit to IndieCade.
« Last Edit: January 22, 2015, 12:42:58 am by Thew » Logged

salemgames
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« Reply #1 on: March 22, 2014, 04:57:49 pm »

the design is very cool. You've made sort of animals with electronic components, kind of mecha-animals in metal.
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lowpoly
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« Reply #2 on: March 22, 2014, 05:20:08 pm »

this is great, the sense of speed and motion is outstanding!
Any chance of this not being a Java release?
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Udderdude
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« Reply #3 on: March 22, 2014, 05:36:04 pm »

I really like the airbrushed look of the enemies.
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Thew
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« Reply #4 on: March 22, 2014, 05:49:21 pm »

this is great, the sense of speed and motion is outstanding!
Any chance of this not being a Java release?


I'm stuck with Java unfortunately; it's built with libGDX (which is itself stuck with Java because of Android). libGDX works with OpenJDK though, so I'm planning to eventually cannibalize the necessary OpenJDK components and roll the whole thing into an executable, which means the user won't need Java installed and it'll behave like a normal Windows program.

Haven't actually tried it yet, though; only read some blog posts that say it's feasible.
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Udderdude
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« Reply #5 on: March 22, 2014, 05:53:15 pm »

I tried it out and I think vSync is disabled, because it immediately starts making my GPU's fans go crazy despite the relatively simple graphics.
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Whiteclaws
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« Reply #6 on: March 22, 2014, 05:58:01 pm »

I tried it out and I think vSync is disabled, because it immediately starts making my GPU's fans go crazy despite the relatively simple graphics.

It's because vSync syncs the update rate with the display rate, and when it's disabled, it just draws as much times as it can per second, that is making your GPU cry, I guess...
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Udderdude
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« Reply #7 on: March 22, 2014, 06:00:48 pm »

Yes, uncapped framerates are not fun.
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Thew
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« Reply #8 on: March 22, 2014, 06:02:42 pm »

I tried it out and I think vSync is disabled, because it immediately starts making my GPU's fans go crazy despite the relatively simple graphics.

It's off by default but you can toggle it with the V key.
I prefer leaving it off personally though; it's the sort of game where the extra few ms of latency can make a pretty big difference.
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Christian
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« Reply #9 on: March 22, 2014, 06:07:11 pm »

Played this last week after seeing it in Reddit's Screenshot Saturday. The sense of speed and the balance between risk and reward is excellent.

What features do you want to add in the future?
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DarthBenedict
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« Reply #10 on: March 22, 2014, 06:50:27 pm »

Looks like a lot of fun.
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Thew
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« Reply #11 on: March 24, 2014, 06:01:55 pm »

Played this last week after seeing it in Reddit's Screenshot Saturday. The sense of speed and the balance between risk and reward is excellent.

What features do you want to add in the future?

Thanks! In terms of actual gameplay, it's mostly complete at this point. Only significant feature I'm planning to add is a graze system, which would let you keep your combo multiplier active while boosting by brushing up against enemies. Still debating how to properly balance the difficulty vs reward for it, though.

Other than that, there's mostly just a pantload of polish that needs to be done. Audio, new player sprite (current version is rendered 3D and doesn't match the rest of the art), better weapon effects, possibly more weather types, major optimization (the smoke shader kind of crushes anything short of a dedicated GPU right now), a proper tutorial section, online scoreboard, menu system, figuring out if porting to mobile is feasible or if I pushed the graphics too far already, making a website that doesn't suck... ugh

Everything takes FOREVER
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James Edward Smith
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« Reply #12 on: March 24, 2014, 06:30:41 pm »

I find the mechanics a little confusing. Do I have to aim when I throw my ship up in the air? Why do I have to fly low to throw it? I think it might make more sense if I was like, a person on a motorcycle/jetsky type vehicle. The "flick" and catch mechanic would be something like making the rider jump off their bike to pull out their blaster and shoot stuff and then catch them with the flying bike thing again.
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mickmaus
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« Reply #13 on: March 24, 2014, 09:56:58 pm »

O___O

the jar won't open on my mac for some reason and now i'm crying
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Thew
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« Reply #14 on: March 25, 2014, 06:26:46 pm »

I find the mechanics a little confusing. Do I have to aim when I throw my ship up in the air? Why do I have to fly low to throw it?

Yeah I really need to add a proper tutorial or something. The mechanics are simple but they're not immediately intuitive either, which is a problem I really don't know how to solve right now. A tutorial should work but it feels like admitting defeat.

While jumping, you automatically shoot whatever's closest to the mouse cursor, but there's nothing to explain that at the moment and I'm planning to remove it anyway. Optimally you just place the cursor ahead of the ship so you always clear a path, so I might as well make that automatic and save players the confusion.

The "fly low" thing is just pure videogame risk/reward mechanics. If you get hit, you'll recover as long as you don't hit anything else, so it's safer to fly higher. However, starting your jumps lower lets you jump higher, so it creates a fun tension where you have to put yourself in greater danger to score higher.

I'm aware that right now none of this is terribly clear unless I explain it, though, which is definitely a problem.


the jar won't open on my mac for some reason and now i'm crying

Odd; I don't have a mac for debugging but it's worked on other people's macs. Might be a Java version issue; it's built for Java 7 right now. If you run it from the terminal (java -jar Aerobat.jar), what's the error say?
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mickmaus
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« Reply #15 on: March 25, 2014, 07:15:11 pm »

Looks like it is some version mismatch:
Code:
[email protected]$ java -jar Aerobat.jar
Exception in thread "main" java.lang.UnsupportedClassVersionError: thew/aerobat/Main : Unsupported major.minor version 51.0
at java.lang.ClassLoader.defineClass1(Native Method)
at java.lang.ClassLoader.defineClassCond(ClassLoader.java:631)
at java.lang.ClassLoader.defineClass(ClassLoader.java:615)
at java.security.SecureClassLoader.defineClass(SecureClassLoader.java:141)
at java.net.URLClassLoader.defineClass(URLClassLoader.java:283)
at java.net.URLClassLoader.access$000(URLClassLoader.java:58)
at java.net.URLClassLoader$1.run(URLClassLoader.java:197)
at java.security.AccessController.doPrivileged(Native Method)
at java.net.URLClassLoader.findClass(URLClassLoader.java:190)
at java.lang.ClassLoader.loadClass(ClassLoader.java:306)
at sun.misc.Launcher$AppClassLoader.loadClass(Launcher.java:301)
at java.lang.ClassLoader.loadClass(ClassLoader.java:247)

and then

Code:
[email protected]$ java -version
java version "1.6.0_51"
Java(TM) SE Runtime Environment (build 1.6.0_51-b11-457-11M4509)
Java HotSpot(TM) 64-Bit Server VM (build 20.51-b01-457, mixed mode)

i dont know much about java but mac used to ship with some apple built version, not the oracle java? I've opened some jars recently and had them run fine.
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Thew
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« Reply #16 on: March 31, 2014, 04:35:58 pm »

i dont know much about java but mac used to ship with some apple built version, not the oracle java? I've opened some jars recently and had them run fine.

Augh, sorry for late reply. 1.6 means Java 6 (the numbering is silly). Apple's gotten weird about their JVM recently but I'm pretty sure they still officially support Java 7. Maybe you can download an update? I'm not really familiar with OSX; sorry Sad


In other news, progress! Spent the last couple weeks reworking the laser and explosion effects, and I think I've finally got something I'm happy with:




Animated looks way better of course:

Also here's a 60 FPS gfy. Really wish I could embed these in posts instead of using gifs; they're a massive improvement.

Also, hard to see but there's FXAA now. Game's currently using OpenGL ES 2.0, which doesn't support multisampled FBOs, so the only way to support all the postprocessing and still have antialiasing is to use FXAA.
LibGDX apparently supports GLES 3 now, though, so I might be able to use multisampling instead if I ever upgrade the project...

Also the FPS counter works perfectly be quiet. I was totally getting two billion FPS while taking those screenshots.
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rocket5tim
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« Reply #17 on: April 01, 2014, 11:15:04 am »

holy crap, those effects are insane! can't stop watching that GFY
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jonbro
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« Reply #18 on: April 01, 2014, 12:10:43 pm »

very nice ! so... guessing you are using a set of fbos with feedback effects and texture lookup distortions? any other tricks I am missing out on here? Would be happy to read a tutorial.

Really like the vignetting and trails that you have as well, really contributes to the sense of speed.
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James Edward Smith
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« Reply #19 on: April 01, 2014, 01:46:17 pm »

I'm aware that right now none of this is terribly clear unless I explain it, though, which is definitely a problem.

Well, that's why I suggested maybe making the player a person on a jetbike thing who you throw off the jet bike and then they start shooting. I think it would be neat because you could have it so that you still control the bike with your mouse while your little rider dude is in the air, so you still have to avoid things with the bike while your rider flies around shooting. Then you have to make sure you catch them with the bike before they hit the ground.
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