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TIGSource ForumsCommunityDevLogsDARKSHIT 2040
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Brian Amadori
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« on: August 31, 2015, 09:00:52 am »


Brian Amadori presents






Weird action game about surviving the dangers of space while eating sandwiches obsessively,
strapped to your child by an umbilical cord in solo and co-op conquest campaigns. An epic war drama.


(Coming in a not too distant future for PC/OSX/Linux)


Gameplay GIFs



Level map GIFs



Wormhole transition



GIFs GIFs GIFs






Going to write updates once or twice a week.
Logs will be about art, technical stuff and my thought process as well. So expect wall of texts every once in a while.

I'm hoping you enjoy watching the progress of this thing!

TODO: Update index

Cheers! Toast Right

« Last Edit: October 16, 2015, 10:13:44 am by Brian Amadori » Logged

Moth
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« Reply #1 on: August 31, 2015, 09:29:45 pm »

Looks super slick. The lasers and glowing effects look especially tech. Nice simple concept, lots of potential.
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Brian Amadori
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« Reply #2 on: September 01, 2015, 05:19:11 am »

Thanks!, about the effects and scene setup, i'm planning to disclose the most i can. I think the next update will be about that.
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grandslam
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« Reply #3 on: September 01, 2015, 05:45:09 am »

Lmao most legit game name ever please don't change it.
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argontus
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« Reply #4 on: September 02, 2015, 08:30:56 am »

Looks super cool! Especially the lazers. Bonus points for rad name!

What's the gameplay incentive? Gather sammiches and hang around in places where lasers can't touch you? Is there a way to trigger the lasers or are they on timers?
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Brian Amadori
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« Reply #5 on: September 02, 2015, 10:06:33 am »

Lmao most legit game name ever please don't change it.

 Cheesy I'll stand by this name with torch and pitchforks.

Looks super cool! Especially the lazers. Bonus points for rad name!

What's the gameplay incentive? Gather sammiches and hang around in places where lasers can't touch you? Is there a way to trigger the lasers or are they on timers?

In the "normal" mode most levels will be time-limited/winnable, you must survive and gather most sandwiches as possible, this determining your map progress. The 3D backgrounds aren't static, they are animated and will advance.

Then you will start to unlock the "endless" levels, that are basically tougher and survival versions of the former.

Lasers will shoot upon synchronized timers on some levels, but in later ones will trigger on touch or randomly. Also, I'm still prototyping a level where you will use a big laser to fight small enemies. The idea is each level will be quite different and will be exploring the simple mechanics on a different (and infuriating) way.

Hope this will be clear enough. Anyway i'll be showing gifs of the galaxy map and explain how you'll be progressing soon.
 Coffee
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Alec S.
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« Reply #6 on: September 02, 2015, 10:33:52 am »

Those laser effects are fantastic.  This game looks fun.
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Brian Amadori
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« Reply #7 on: September 04, 2015, 08:02:25 am »

Those laser effects are fantastic.  This game looks fun.

Thanks dude  Gentleman

----

Ok, just posting a small update, currently messing around with a text console effect thing, planning to use this in UI, HUD, etc.

I want to modify the font, so the rubbish characters look more “alien”



What do you think? Do you know some easy to use font editor?
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Brian Amadori
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« Reply #8 on: September 05, 2015, 11:55:00 am »

You will be advancing horizontally across this “map”, that dotted line is supposed to be the limit you can travel. That big ship on the top is the alien overlords flagship you will be leading upon getting better sandwich-eating records, and will be always behind that line.



(html5 link for this gif)

So, for now the progress is supposed to be like this:

  • You play levels, trying to achieve the best score
  • All the levels score will be added together, the result is where the dotted line will be
  • So, If you can’t progress further and the last level is too dificult, you can go back earlier levels and get better scores (sort of mario 64-ish progression)

I'm still figuring out how to make this added scores stuff clear enough for the player.

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Brian Amadori
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« Reply #9 on: September 11, 2015, 10:10:46 am »

I’m using this movie as visual reference

Here’s what i came with:



Things i did:

  • Created a custom shader to make a glowy transparent effect for the sun and earth’s atmosphere. This glow is actually another slightly bigger sphere in the same place, but with a z-buffer offset cranked up to be far away. I wanted to use Unity’s RenderQueue for this in Background+1, but when you are in deferred mode all the transparent stuff get rendered after everything regardless anything you do... very annoying.

  • Again, created another custom rim lighting shader to make the earth borders match with the glow.

  • All the background is rendered in a separate layer from the gameplay to a render target. This allows me the possibility to cheapen the post-processing effects and make the game friendlier to lower specs.

  • The earth globe is actually composed of 4 separate layers. Terrain, Night lights, and 2 clouds layers (one with overlay blending, and a transparent one on top). I used SpaceScape to make the space background. Its enough for now, but i’m planning to improve the space skybox in the future.

  • For the sun, i added a dummy flare, this is a 0 range light with a custom flare set up. When you do that the flare will show up and the light will cost nothing. Kind of a hack but works like a charm.

  • Still planning to make the earth night lights shader output HDR values, but for now the glowing lights are baked.


Step by step rendering using unity’s nifty frame debugger



That’s all for now, next week i’m going to get into some wormhole transition FX and post the process here.

Maintaining a devlog is quite a task by itself, so if you reached here try to drop some feedback, i will appreciate that a LOT, and if you got some negative constructive advice it’s actually better because i get to improve on this and learn in the process.

Also, if some of you aren’t familiar with some of the terminology i may use, just ask and i will answer any questions/provide resources as possible.

Thanks for reading  Coffee
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Brian Amadori
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« Reply #10 on: September 13, 2015, 12:00:10 pm »

Messing around applying a rainbow texture to the rim transparency shader for a lens flare effect. I'm planning to use it for a new explosions-based hazard i'm making. Going to post a gif of that if i get something that i'm happy with.



Its not exactly screenshot saturday but whatever.
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CrowbarSka
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« Reply #11 on: September 13, 2015, 12:11:00 pm »

Love the "anti-shmup" concept (dodge 'em up? dump?)

Is there anything the player can do to affect the hazards around them, or are they completely at their whim? Might be cool if you could bump into things before they activate to make them safer or alter their behaviour somehow...? Maybe.

Anyway, really cool! Keeping an eye on this. Smiley
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Brian Amadori
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« Reply #12 on: September 13, 2015, 01:14:20 pm »

Love the "anti-shmup" concept (dodge 'em up? dump?)

Is there anything the player can do to affect the hazards around them, or are they completely at their whim? Might be cool if you could bump into things before they activate to make them safer or alter their behaviour somehow...? Maybe.

Anyway, really cool! Keeping an eye on this. Smiley

Oops! Nice catch. Maybe i'm not showing that properly. The game uses physics, so you can bump with the hazards and they will start to drift away (freaking you out). This happens all the time.

Also i made some laser pipes that are off by default, but can turn on if you bump into them. I'm planning on a level full of those.

Thanks for passing by  Coffee
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Brian Amadori
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« Reply #13 on: September 15, 2015, 12:09:21 pm »

I'm trying to make the umbilical cord joining the players in co-op mode physics based.

So i got my hands dirty and started experimenting with the JointSpring2D component.



Note the gap in the middle. That is because i'm attaching 2 joints in the middle of the rope, attached to the neighbor nodes, but only 1 joint in every other note attached to a node outwards.

Rough shitty diagram:
Code:
P1   *   *   *   *   *   *   *   *   *   P2
.   <-  <-  <-  <-  <->  ->  ->  ->  ->

I tried to improve this and...



Much better, now i'm attaching 2 joints only in even nodes, pointing outwards.

So it looks like this (hope it makes some sense):

Code:
P1   *   *   *   *   *   *   *   *   *    P2
.   <->     <->     <->     <->     <->


I tried then to use LineRenderer to render the cord...



Not a fan of this... look how the cord breaks when the nodes are to close to each other...

To improve it i tried to use the particles way... Just using Graphics.DrawMesh to draw a bunch of quads between the nodes.



A lot smoother.

 Coffee
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Brian Amadori
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« Reply #14 on: September 19, 2015, 09:23:21 am »

I don't have a proper update. BUT! here is a picture of the arcade prototype being played in a local argentinian event from a few months ago.



 Beer!
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Brian Amadori
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« Reply #15 on: September 22, 2015, 08:24:13 am »

Update #5 - Design space, inner/outer conflict

Disclaimer: Long winded theorizing wall of text ahead

I’m going to rant a bit about some design problems i’m still tackling.


Single Player Vs CO-OP Gameplay

This game started as hot-seat co-op multiplayer. As such, the design in that frame resulted to be incredibly simple, and just worked. The thing is, i think releasing a local co-op only game is not enough to hold up to the value standard that games have nowadays, that reign reserved to competitive games.

So, I started prototyping single player after the two players mode. By removing the second player, I learned how the co-op mode added complexity to the system. This game has so few rules that the players arguing about communication strategies, blaming each other for failures, and struggling to sync movements was a relatively big thing (thinking in terms of brain space).


Inner-Outer Conflict

With action games, i tend to visualize the design with a mental model of a inner/outer conflict that fills our brain. Outer conflict would be the level, enemies and hazards. Inner conflict the complexity of controls, the system and cognitive noise the player have to deal with to deal with the outer.

A extreme inner-conflict game would be QWOP or Envirobear-2000. Outer conflict games are games like super-hexagon and danmaku shooters.

I find the difficulty in any action game is a result of the balance of these two conflicts.

Removing co-op mode removed a big deal of inner conflict to the game. With single player, this has to be compensated somehow.




Design Space Nightmare
So, this is a hardcore avoiding game, the design space of this type of games is inmense, there are hundreds of decisions i could take to restore the difficulty. For starters, I could chose to even inner and outer conflict types in similar proportion to the co-op mode. This is -- have some amount of inner conflict (i.e. more than a shmup). and add a lot of outer (harder levels) still i have the same amount of difficulty.

The thing is, you start to write down ideas and realize the possibilities are endless. There are a lot of ideas and there are some that look just about right even after implemented. How are you supposed to filter them?

So, in the next posts i’m going to show you some stuff i already tried/trying and see where this ends.

Any of you have these kind of issues when figuring out how your game is going to work?
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« Reply #16 on: September 22, 2015, 09:01:41 am »

Man all the custom shaders and effects you've implemented are seriously impressive! The game just looks so damn cool... Cool game name too Tongue
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Brian Amadori
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« Reply #17 on: September 22, 2015, 04:39:26 pm »

Man all the custom shaders and effects you've implemented are seriously impressive! The game just looks so damn cool... Cool game name too Tongue
Thanks, i'm very glad that you liked it! Coffee
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Fenrir
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« Reply #18 on: September 22, 2015, 11:31:48 pm »

Hey, we all want a closer look to the lasers effect, don't forget it! Smiley
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Brian Amadori
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« Reply #19 on: September 24, 2015, 09:14:54 am »

Hey, we all want a closer look to the lasers effect, don't forget it! Smiley

I'm going to show a closer look to it in next update (maybe tomorrow).  Gentleman
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