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TIGSource ForumsCommunityDevLogsParkitect - business simulation
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Sebioff
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« on: April 04, 2014, 08:52:12 am »



Currently on Kickstarter

A business simulation game about building and managing theme parks.

Website
"Official" devlog (this one here is more focused on the technical/design parts)

Twitter:
Sebastian (programming)
Garret (artist)
Gordon (sound)

Fairly recent screenshot:


Original post

Last week I started working on a rollercoaster simulation, just to see how difficult it would be to implement. It went pretty well and was a lot of fun to develop, so now I'd like to continue developing it into a theme park simulation in the style of RollerCoaster Tycoon 1/2 Smiley
Code should be no problem, the main problems will be art/sound as I don't have much experience with that.


What I Have So Far
  • basic coasters
    • some basic track pieces (stations, lift hills, 90° curves, slopes and straights, loops, banked segments)
    • trains made from any amount of cars
    • multiple trains on a track with collision response
  • basic coaster building interface (won't be pretty, just to make sure it works as I planned)
  • paths and terrain core functionality
  • basic guests (just walking around randomly for now; entering and riding coasters)


GIF Intermission!
(Everything programmer art obviously)


A simple coaster showing off most of the currently supported track features


Train interactions


Simple peeps


What I'll Probably Work On Next
  • more work on coaster tracks
    • the idea is that tracks are built from predefined base shapes that can be modified, e.g. you could freely change the radius and angle of curves or tilt the loops etc. This partially already works, but I havn't entirely figured out yet how to keep everything aligned with the grid.
    • better triangulation of the track (less triangles on straights, more in curves)
    • making sure the track doesn't intersect with itself/the environment
    • actual rails instead of the current "debug ribbon"
    • supports
« Last Edit: July 06, 2015, 01:26:53 am by Sebioff » Logged

Current devlog: Parkitect, a theme park simulation, currently on Kickstarter | Twitter
mickmaus
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« Reply #1 on: April 04, 2014, 09:04:07 am »

Wow! I'd love a breakdown on how you went about the coaster physics!

Good luck on this project, I'd love a mini rollercoaster tycoon game
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Prodigga
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« Reply #2 on: April 04, 2014, 09:59:37 am »

your simulation really has that 'Rollercoaster' feel to it, so far it looks great dude. Very nice. So is the track made up of preset pieces? Could you make it so that you can freely draw your track with your current code?
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SolarLune
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« Reply #3 on: April 04, 2014, 10:52:38 am »

Are you going to make it so that you can shoot your roller coasters off the track and have them explode when they crash? That was probably one of the best parts of RCT, haha.

Anyway, nice roller coaster simulations! Are you going to implement other ride simulations as well?
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Fervir
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« Reply #4 on: April 04, 2014, 11:24:50 am »

Station brakes failure
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Sebioff
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« Reply #5 on: April 04, 2014, 11:47:14 am »

Wow! I'd love a breakdown on how you went about the coaster physics!

I'll make sure to write about it in the future Smiley

Quote from: Prodigga
your simulation really has that 'Rollercoaster' feel to it, so far it looks great dude. Very nice. So is the track made up of preset pieces? Could you make it so that you can freely draw your track with your current code?

Thanks! So, I would describe it as some kind of hybrid system: there is a predefined list of elements that you can use on your coaster, which currently are: straight pieces, curves, elevation changes and loops. But they can be freely modified by a bunch of parameters, for example the curves don't have to always be 90°, you can set them to any angle you want. Other tweakable parameters are the angle of the banking and the length of the piece. Codewise yes, it would be possible to freely draw the track however you want, but I think that makes it harder for the average player to design a nice and useable coaster. That's why I want everything to stay aligned with a grid. Also, I think it's more fun and challenging if there are some restrictions...you'll be less restricted than in RCT, though.
Due to the tweakable pieces the graphics for them can't be premade, they are generated at runtime. I'll write a more detailed technical article on how exactly the code for the pieces works sometime Smiley

Here's a bonus picture showing the alignment of the pieces with the grid:


Quote from: SolarLune
Are you going to make it so that you can shoot your roller coasters off the track and have them explode when they crash? [...] Are you going to implement other ride simulations as well?

I absolutely plan to do both Smiley
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Kurt
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« Reply #6 on: April 04, 2014, 08:35:59 pm »

I <3 RCT and I <3 this
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TNERB
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gamez stink


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« Reply #7 on: April 04, 2014, 09:23:36 pm »

I need a good RCT fix, this looks very promising.

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Prodigga
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« Reply #8 on: April 04, 2014, 11:23:17 pm »

they can be freely modified by a bunch of parameters

I like this, and I agree with your reasoning for restricting it. More control does not always mean better. I was just curious as to how flexible your code was, it sounds really cool Smiley
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Sebioff
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« Reply #9 on: April 05, 2014, 02:18:25 am »

I worked a bit on paths including ride entrances/exits and added some basic guests. They can already ride the coaster!
The shading on my new "art" looks somewhat strange...I guess there might be something wrong with the normals.
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Bluefish88
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« Reply #10 on: April 05, 2014, 02:25:46 am »

looks really interesting~
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Prodigga
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« Reply #11 on: April 05, 2014, 02:58:17 am »

I know its just your programmer art and you don't care but it is pretty easy to fix the funny shading! If you are using Blender, add the "edge split" modifier to your funky looking art, and it'll get rid of the funny smoothing. There is some parameters you can tweak but it generally works well the first time you slap it on.



If you aren't using blender, you're 3d software should have something similar (smoothing groups etc)
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oodavid
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« Reply #12 on: April 05, 2014, 04:04:06 am »

The physics has a really natural feeling to it, I could imagine people spending hours getting the thing to almost-but-not-quite stop at the top.

How do you know when to release the next train? Is it pre-calculated or do you need to create a trigger-point?
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Sebioff
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« Reply #13 on: April 05, 2014, 06:04:23 am »

Thanks Prodigga, that worked! As it turns out though it was actually a bug in Blender that has been fixed with the newest version. The export is working fine now without having to apply the edge split modifier.

How do you know when to release the next train? Is it pre-calculated or do you need to create a trigger-point?
Currently the train just leaves after waiting for a predefined amout of time (which happens to fit perfectly for my test track). I think you'll only be allowed to have as many trains as can fit into the station and I'll pre-calculate the waiting time so that they're somewhat evenly distributed over the track (but you can manually tweak it).
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retrostark
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« Reply #14 on: April 05, 2014, 08:49:21 am »

very excited for this, I would say you should try and mimic the graphics of the original RCT and basically make a game like that because it's such a great game  Beer!
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Sebioff
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« Reply #15 on: April 06, 2014, 04:14:55 am »

very excited for this, I would say you should try and mimic the graphics of the original RCT and basically make a game like that because it's such a great game  Beer!

It really is a great game Smiley I feel like a big challenge will be to keep enough of its elements, yet add enough of my own stuff to set myself apart from it while maintaining that "theme park feeling" it had.
Havn't made any decisions about the graphics yet, but I certainly hope they'll be as charming Smiley

It seemed a bit unsafe to stand on the coaster, so I added a sitting pose. While I was at it, I also added benches where they can sit down and rest. Guests get tired after some time and sitting refills their energy.

It took me some time to figure out Unity's animation system, but it seems quite nice so far.
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Prodigga
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« Reply #16 on: April 06, 2014, 04:44:59 am »

Looking sharp man. Can't wait to see more of this.
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indie11
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« Reply #17 on: April 06, 2014, 04:51:04 am »

looking great man, share the coding methodology you used to create this :D ?
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SolarLune
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« Reply #18 on: April 06, 2014, 04:35:55 pm »

It seemed a bit unsafe to stand on the coaster, so I added a sitting pose. While I was at it, I also added benches where they can sit down and rest. Guests get tired after some time and sitting refills their energy.

It took me some time to figure out Unity's animation system, but it seems quite nice so far.

Make it so that once in awhile, randomly, one of the coaster riders might stand up. That might end badly if the track goes through a tunnel or before a drop. Could be fun, though.

Anyway, nice development! I like the chubby Playskool-esque figures you've got there.
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Thomas Finch
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« Reply #19 on: April 06, 2014, 05:21:02 pm »

My main complaint with most theme part sims and tycoons are the interfaces. Everything is so complicated and cluttered. I'd buy this in a heartbeat if you can do a very simplified, easy interface without making the gameplay feel too simple.
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