Welcome, Guest. Please login or register.
Did you miss your activation email?

Login with username, password and session length

 
Advanced search

1315213 Posts in 58962 Topics- by 50081 Members - Latest Member: Francegifts

September 24, 2017, 11:44:37 pm

Need hosting? Check out Digital Ocean
(more details in this thread)
TIGSource ForumsCommunityDevLogs[Greenlit!] Muddledash ~ multiplayer octopus racing
Pages: 1 2 [3] 4 5
Print
Author Topic: [Greenlit!] Muddledash ~ multiplayer octopus racing  (Read 13817 times)
nialltl
Level 0
**


pode racer


View Profile WWW
« Reply #40 on: August 19, 2016, 06:48:58 pm »

Never heard of a foliage decal system like that, but it's looking good. Although in the GIFs, it doesn't look like the plants are always appearing squashed when they should be. Looks like they get squashed when a player runs on top of them, but not if a player gets bumped on top of them by another player. Bug? Smiley

good eye! not quite a bug though, more a temporary decision to just-leave-it-be for the time being. currently any time a trigger associated with a player leaves the collision region of a plant piece it'll spring back up, so if there's more than one player on top of a plant and one leaves, it'll unsquash itself. this will get a proper treatment soon, but I also like the idea of people being able to hide in the grass if they liked (thinking the dummy heads here, prior to respawning). for now I'm focusing on getting at least first-pass assets for every object in the game so that we can record a gameplay video and start gettin the wurd out.

here's a procedural palette result from earlier today that looked extra snazz:


Logged

octopus racing -- Muddledash  |  first person skating -- flow state  |  twitter
snaps
Level 0
**


:^ )


View Profile WWW
« Reply #41 on: August 19, 2016, 07:04:28 pm »

Hey just dropping in 2 ur thread 2 say hi & that the grass & char movement looks rly sproingy & good.
Logged

FK in the Coffee
Level 10
*****


meme pixels


View Profile Email
« Reply #42 on: August 19, 2016, 07:21:36 pm »

this is really cute and definitely looks like something my friends and I would really enjoy

keep up the good work/the excellent technical posts
Logged
SafetySnail
Level 0
***



View Profile Email
« Reply #43 on: August 20, 2016, 06:05:03 am »

Thanks a lot guys, really glad you're enjoying the posts!
We're in a bit of a crunch mode at the moment trying to get an alpha build ready to get us another step closer to a Greenlight campaign (More details on that soon!)
In the mean time take a peek at some level runs I've been testing out to make sure all the room graphics blend together nicely. A few little touch ups need to be done here and there but I'm happy with the progress!

Logged
nialltl
Level 0
**


pode racer


View Profile WWW
« Reply #44 on: August 24, 2016, 07:52:34 am »

I've been working on a LOT of different aspects of the game over the past few days so I have quite a backlog of things I want to talk about. it's now turning into a bit of a mountainous task to do the topics justice, but I'll be starting wiiiiith:

procedural colour palettes




yet another one of those things that had been planned from the very beginning. it's belonged to the 'visual pass' of the game that I was saving for later in development and I'm very glad I treated it as such, because otherwise I don't know how long it would've taken  to build the rest of the game. the only downside is that when I came to it, the codebase structure and our art assets weren't so well equipped to just drop random colours into.

after a lot of back-and-forth before I settled on using SVG assets and SVG Importer. the sacrifice that came with this was the loss of the original mockup concept of soft filters on terrain. however, what began as a compromise has now transformed into a very definite preference, at least on my end. we had some in-person feedback from somebody who mentioned they liked the 'flat' look, and initially I was just batting it away with 'yeah that's temp art', but the more I mulled on it the more I realised that the planned colour palettes, foliage, gradients AND image filters were just going to look messy. it's also an easy shortcut to 'ah yes. this game looks like it was made with Flash's built-in filters', which I'd rather avoid.

the reason this is relevant is that SVG Importer by default was lacking some things I found myself needing for the levels, namely non-additive alpha blending. we settled on having the layer of 'goopiness' be represented by a translucent SVG layer underneath the base terrain shape. here's an example of it in action with a test SVG file I'd been working with:




the issue with the one on the left is that if there are multiple rooms chained together, we can't guarantee that they'll link in exactly (plus it's just a bit of a nuisance to constrain level designs to always perfectly lining up). this means that we draw our level overlays with a bit of 'overdraw', i.e. they bleed into the next room's object space. it becomes very obvious to the eye that the game is a system of rooms if you can see where each area starts and ends like that, so I ended up writing a very small modification to a shader for the one on the left that uses a stencil buffer to ensure overdraw is accounted for.
for reference, the bright Wobbledog-magenta is recoloured dynamically in a second pass and acts as the 'highlight' layer to give some more ~sheen~.
combining this selective highlighting with the alpha blending above, I end up with just a single shared material for the entirety of the base level's structure, which is then tinted according to our base hue.




. . ¿ but what should our base hue be ?

I've had a few pages bookmarked on colour theory (and algorithmic palette selection) since the dawn of time and I was looking forward to finally getting to implementing the ideas I'd read in days of internet yore. initially I focused a lot on trying things out from this article by Herman Tulleken (it's very thorough!), and was keen on the colour-harmony generator he'd posted. I think this is a great solution but I found myself  feeling that it was 'over-parametrised', and ended up tinkering for perhaps too long. I also attempted generating schemes around pre-set triads (here is a good page with a very nice intuitive guide to colour harmonies if you're unfamiliar). the problem with triad-schemes is that it gets increasingly difficult to ensure things amply contrast where they need to. when we already have background + foreground required to contrast, adding both traps - which players NEED to see - and foliage on top of that - which would be NICE to see - it gets tough to ensure something will work when randomised a little.

I went back to another article he references that I'd initially avoided as it didn't seem flexible enough. it merely boils down to rotating around the imaginary hue wheel in golden-ratio steps to ensure colours are never too close to one another. it works out really well - consider that a full 180 degree shift (or + 0.5 on a 0-1 normalised range) around the wheel results in direct complementary colours, shifting by just-a-bit-over (0.618 . . .) ensures that things still complement one another, and won't just simply repeat in cycles of 2. I added some range restrictions on the hue to avoid murky greens on the background or garish yellows on the foreground and it's working quite well.


so almost everything is done in HSV space and then converted to RGB for Unity's internal purposes. just shifting hues around the spectrum isn't quite enough, though - I've been playing around a lot with randomised and tuned saturation + value params for individual items. the rough rule of thumb is 'objects have to stand out no matter what. foliage can be somewhere in between' - in other words, prioritise contrast over the exact hue or saturation associated with switches, flatgrass, etc. it's been a bit of a battle to keep things looking nice while being easy to distinguish at speed, and for certain items like the boosters I extended another shader so that I could specify an outline colour that then gets a darker value than the base colour:




a dynamic tint object, before and after


the only thing that uses rgb-based randomization is the grassy foliage decals, which I've also padded out a bit with things like little mushrooms and swirly vines.




in the process I ended up refining the 'squish/push-able' script to be a lot more customisable. I've ended up being able to use it on most dynamic items in the game without it seeming recycled (hopefully). I'll put up a more in-depth post about it if there's any interest.

I have a feeling I'm not quite done in the colours realm but for now I'm happy enough to move on. SafetySnail is goin' bananas with room designs and we're clonking our heads together to try and get party rooms at the ends of levels. overall this game needs a LOT  more balloons and novelty party items, is my feeling. RJ is also beat-tinkering behind the scenes and we're aiming to get an alpha video out in the world very soon!




--

Hey just dropping in 2 ur thread 2 say hi & that the grass & char movement looks rly sproingy & good.
thanks, snappo. I radiate waves of mutual appreciation out in your direction. ps I'm going to be living in california for a year starting this september, hit me up if ever want to literally high five or discuss shader internals in excruciating detail together!
« Last Edit: August 24, 2016, 05:29:51 pm by nialltl » Logged

octopus racing -- Muddledash  |  first person skating -- flow state  |  twitter
Prinsessa
Level 10
*****


Ava Skoog


View Profile WWW Email
« Reply #45 on: August 24, 2016, 07:54:49 am »

yesss best update <3
Logged

Eendhoorn
Level 6
*



View Profile
« Reply #46 on: August 24, 2016, 11:12:55 am »

This is one of those games that will put a smile on your face, good job!
Logged

nialltl
Level 0
**


pode racer


View Profile WWW
« Reply #47 on: August 25, 2016, 03:57:22 pm »

thanks both of you!

I have nothing major to update with other than this slippy surface gif I captured. I think my ever-present impulse to keep sliding up and down it means that it's working




can't tell if I should smooth out the bounce responses between players or if it looks benignly glitchy in a sort of endearing way. I'm going to be away over the next couple of days but safetysnail should be puttin up some design oriented stuff while I'm gone. stay tuned!
Logged

octopus racing -- Muddledash  |  first person skating -- flow state  |  twitter
rj
Level 10
*****


bad, yells


View Profile WWW
« Reply #48 on: August 25, 2016, 05:16:46 pm »

this game is so fun to just sit down and mess with that it should be a crime
Logged

SafetySnail
Level 0
***



View Profile Email
« Reply #49 on: August 27, 2016, 10:14:06 pm »

Art for the unartistic
So, we're getting to the stage in this game where we want to pretty it up, you might have seen in some of Niall's previous posts and also on our Twitter that we've been putting in some plants and other fancy bits and pieces.
Now, art doesn't come naturally to me at all. I know what looks good and can picture it in my head but getting it down either on paper or digitally is a major challenge and one that I actually find quite frustrating.
Thankfully for the purpose of this game I've found a neat little trick to get around this. This technique actually developed out of the process used to put drawovers on our rooms and although it's a bit convoluted it's allowed me to get assets into the game without feeling like I am drawing them at all.
The workflow is something like this:

-Draw a super rough sketch of the basic shapes I want



-Create this shape out of simple geometry



-Draw straight lines over the whole object




-Manipulate the lines creating curves until the shape is just about where I want it




-Fill in the lines with greys/whites/gradients to be tinted in game depending on whatever colour palette Niall's magic code has created.




And ta-da! We've got ourselves some art!
Here's a collection of some of the decorative plants made using this technique, I think they've come out pretty nice.



As well as these little things I've also been working on a bunch more levels. I'm hoping to create enough rooms that it's actually an acheivement to see them all. Right now we're sitting at about 34 individual rooms, each with their own micro-procgens for trap and plant placement and it's already feeling really fresh with every play, which is good, but I'm personally not going to be happy until we've at LEAST quadripled that number of rooms.

The great thing about having all the rooms link up into one long graphic is that they really start to blend into each other gameplay wise. Sometimes I catch myself thinking "Wow I don't remember making this room at all" only to find that I'm standing inbetween two rooms so here's hoping an untrained eye sprinting through levels at top octospeed will never notice rooms at all.

Well that's about all from me today, we'll have an alpha build up and running real soon so if anyone is interested in giving it a try just comment here and we'll make sure to keep you in the loop, thanks guys!
Logged
freank
Level 1
*



View Profile WWW Email
« Reply #50 on: August 27, 2016, 11:36:14 pm »

so cute :D
Logged

Supporter of


and

nialltl
Level 0
**


pode racer


View Profile WWW
« Reply #51 on: September 01, 2016, 06:29:07 pm »

and I'm back! since I arrived I've been working on seemingly everything-and-nothing at the same time. lots of tiny behind-the-scenes tweaks and bugfixing but no immediate content developments that are worth immediately showing. one good side of this is a handful of performance improvements - premature optimization as I mentioned earlier is something I want to try and avoid but there were a few quick fixes I wanted to do that'd been weighing on my mind.

the first of these is that every room that has some sort of foliage or decal in it is still being simulated when off-screen. unity takes care of culling mesh geometry and the general rendering side of things, but all my little plants were still swaying away unseen. my first solution to this was to attach a trigger area to the camera itself and detect entry / exits of rooms, but it got a bit messy with all the collision layers we have going on and I couldn't stop the camera trigger from listening for all object intersections. this meant it was checking for overlaps from every plant in the scene and it ended up being even slower than before.
so instead, I now just do some AABB-AABB overlap checks by hand from each room in the scene to the camera's bounds, accounting for the camera dynamically scaling. this check also doesn't need to happen every frame just because a lot of the time players will be situated within a couple of rooms of each other, so I instead just fire it every half second, and scale up the theoretical camera AABB to avoid any 'popping in' of objects.




I know I'm being a bit of a sun-fried fool with the way the foliage system works, as currently there are a lot of virtually identical objects in the scene and I'm not doing any object pooling at all, so I'm keeping a lot more in memory than is really necessary. I'm also sure there's a way to achieve all this transform-scaling using vertex animations in a shader, but it's currently in 'ain't broke, don't fix' territory. this is definitely something I'll come back to and clean up, but for now we're focused on getting together gameplay footage and a greenlight campaign (please stop by this thread soon for news on that front!)


I've also finally been tackling the placeholder art for flatgrass, seed shooters and switches. it's been getting really difficult to balance all the colours going on, so I decided to impose the restriction that all interactive objects e.g. traps will have the same base hue, but vary in saturation and luminance. hopefully this will make it easier to differentiate between plants and traps on the fly, especially once the player knows what the base silhouette of each one is.






I'd really like some opinions on how this looks. it's important that the flatgrass's behaviour is intuitive - it'll slow you down until it's been run through once, after which it's squashed down.

I also fixed a bug with flatgrass where the spring stiffness of each blade wasn't being reset correctly, resulting in an amateur KISS tribute concert when you ran over them twice


old awful temporary flatgrass


seed shooters have similarly been shown a little more love, and I've added a cosmic trail to them. they're still missing some sort of impact effect, but the trail combined with a little shadow they project under them hopefully makes them easier to see at speed, and I don't have to worry so much about colour contrasts.






finally I've been cleaning up the switches. their graphics aren't in-game right now, so I'll be working on that tonight. in the meantime here's the beginnings of some bunting I'm going to add. are you ready to party?Huh??


Logged

octopus racing -- Muddledash  |  first person skating -- flow state  |  twitter
rj
Level 10
*****


bad, yells


View Profile WWW
« Reply #52 on: September 01, 2016, 06:48:12 pm »

nobody is ready to party
Logged

nialltl
Level 0
**


pode racer


View Profile WWW
« Reply #53 on: September 02, 2016, 10:50:20 pm »

progress on party rooms is coming along juuuuust fiiiiine




(after a few mis-steps along the way)




the final parties are going to have a lot more inter-pode variation to fit the theme of the soiree in question. I'm having a lot of fun designing dance styles for these lil dudes. please help me figure out which other dances are necessary for octopodes to perform. so far I have:

- the robot
- wiggling

those are the only two dances I know.
Logged

octopus racing -- Muddledash  |  first person skating -- flow state  |  twitter
nathy grrrl
Level 3
***


SLC Punk


View Profile WWW
« Reply #54 on: September 03, 2016, 10:49:47 am »

The party rooms remind me of Nidhogg's victory screen  Hand Thumbs Up Left
Logged

nialltl
Level 0
**


pode racer


View Profile WWW
« Reply #55 on: September 03, 2016, 05:11:40 pm »

The party rooms remind me of Nidhogg's victory screen  Hand Thumbs Up Left

soon they'll all have swords too


I was fiddling with the trap designs again a bit last night. it'd been bothering us both that the boosters looked very well-defined in the space yet didn't really fit with any of the other art. it was the only object in the game to have a defined outline around it, and it looked jarring. I removed the outer line and added a gradient to it in the hopes that it'd fit a bit more with the flora and fauna of the world and it looked decent but still didn't sit so well with me:


I then tried removing the gradient and making it fully opaque but then it looked kinda dead:




..so finally I restored the transparency but ended up with a gradientless, outlineless, otherwise basically identical version of the booster. and now I am a happier man.



I also made a few closeup gifs of the various world features we have so far:



seed switch



goop patch (sounds less clinical than 'slippy surface', even if we never refer to these by name in-game)



flatgrass
Logged

octopus racing -- Muddledash  |  first person skating -- flow state  |  twitter
nialltl
Level 0
**


pode racer


View Profile WWW
« Reply #56 on: September 05, 2016, 03:21:11 pm »

some progress on the party room. it's not so clear in the gif but there is now rave lighting.



also added some of SafetySnail's plants and hooked them up to the decal system. here's a pretty screenshot I got earlier (soon our start room will be a bit clearer!)

Logged

octopus racing -- Muddledash  |  first person skating -- flow state  |  twitter
nialltl
Level 0
**


pode racer


View Profile WWW
« Reply #57 on: September 10, 2016, 04:04:48 pm »

hello again! been a bit quiet the past few days but it's been in prep for a couple of things - namely getting the alpha video together, and packing my stuff up to leave Australia. I've had a lot on my plate and in my head but am very happy to get it to the next 'milestone' before exiting the country!

a slight change: the game is now called Muddledash! we were collectively very fond of that 'p' but it turns out that there's actually another game called that - we'd been emailing back and forth but collectively decided it'd be best to change while it's still relatively early days.

we also now have a website, which you can check out here. I've now written a presskit using the lovely toolkit() resources by rami of vlambeer and others, and we're gearing up towards putting our greenlight out there. and getting some more gameplay footage! I'd love to do something arena gods-style with a highlight video of people playing on webcam alongside the footage to get some reactions (it never disappoints).

there have been some gameplay additions evident in the video, most prominently the addition of a little present. I want to talk about this at a bit more length, so I'll dedicate a post to it very soon (and get back to some tech breakdowns, I love writin' them and have had some fun optimizing in order to capture the game semismoothly on my old laptop).

so, the alpha video is VERY much an alpha - we've got one of rj's demo tracks in but all the sfx are sourced haphazardly from various places and aren't representative of the final sound design (particularly that gift-get-gong noise). with that in mind, please let us know what you think! it'd be great to hear if people can 'get' the game from this video, if there's anything too confounding, etc.

Logged

octopus racing -- Muddledash  |  first person skating -- flow state  |  twitter
rj
Level 10
*****


bad, yells


View Profile WWW
« Reply #58 on: September 10, 2016, 05:18:32 pm »

new name same game

as mentioned the sound design is something i'm gonna be contributing to for the final quite a hecka bit (all sounds, in fact), but right now it's all temp stuff provided by the rest of these talented guys through the ancient magic of freesound

the piece of music that fades in is a ghettoblaster hip-hop choon that echoes one of the fun things we're going to do for party scenes that ideally we'll talk about/implement soon! i hope so, at least, i have been doing some dumb stuff for it and i want people to hear that
Logged

Capntastic
Community Friendlord
Administrator
Level 10
******



View Profile WWW Email
« Reply #59 on: September 10, 2016, 07:51:55 pm »

I wanna go to the party
Logged
Pages: 1 2 [3] 4 5
Print
Jump to:  

Theme orange-lt created by panic