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TIGSource ForumsCommunityTownhallForum IssuesArchived subforums (read only)Archived ProjectsBalding's Quest (Moderator: BMcC)Balding's Quest: Public Build One
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Dan MacDonald
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« Reply #20 on: March 03, 2007, 11:55:08 PM »

bring on teh pushups!!!
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« Reply #21 on: March 04, 2007, 12:06:44 AM »

man this is great on like 10 levels guys, seriously!
The controls are great, works flawless with my wired XBOX controller. Jumping around, grabbing ledges, it all feels really fluid and well thought out. Can't say enough about that.

two animation suggestions/ideas:

1. When you jump and catch a ladder middair, it might be cool if instead of just locking onto it, his momentum followed through a bit so he swings off to the side, before completely grappling onto the rails. Maybe even one-handed, so it looks more dangerous.

2. While crawling, when you are about to approach a ladder and can't stand up, it might be cool if he did a somersault into the dangle animation, instead of just transitioning right to the dangle. Might look funny in the small space, but that would be badass.

keep up the good work, wish there was something I could do to contribute (3D Balding?)
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« Reply #22 on: March 04, 2007, 12:21:46 AM »

Why when he grabs onto a ledge after jumping does he keep looking at the screen, but when he climbs down into a dangly position he...doesn't?

It's just starting at a different position in the animation loop.  To keep things varied.

Is that... OK?  Tongue
Why of course master BMcC.

Quote
lasers charge up, rockets take time to accelerate, spikes shake before they fall, goblins wind up before swinging their axes, and so on.
Goooood...I hate when enemies attack without any prior warning. It'll make it much more skill based so that when someone screws up they can't say "where'd that come from!?"
"Look buddy, you had all the warning in the world. GTFOut of the way next time."
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« Reply #23 on: March 04, 2007, 01:41:47 AM »

Just a note to say on my laptop screen, fullscreen doesn't work because my resolution just doesn't go down that far Sad

Is there a way to fullscreen with just double sized pixels or something?

Great job though on the engine. Super fluid movements. It seems like you have to wait too long for the climbing on/off the tops of ladders animations, but the rest is fine.

I think the apparent sluggish movement people seem to be experiencing is amplified by the test screen because it's loaded with crates and objects, and poor Guy is having to pull himself up all the time. I reckon it should be fine for an actual level. The hanging thing works really well (kinda like Flashback) showing you can hang from a ledge, drop, and grab onto another ledge further down. Could make for some good dodging/timing puzzles (especially with regard to the Mission:Impossible type feel).

Can't think of anything else to say other than well done. Bring on Milestone Two!
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« Reply #24 on: March 04, 2007, 04:27:06 AM »

FULL.METAL.JACKET
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« Reply #25 on: March 04, 2007, 05:20:42 AM »

very nice
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DrDerekDoctors
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« Reply #26 on: March 04, 2007, 06:30:18 AM »

Very nice indeed! Possibly suffers a little from having too many frames of animation which dulls the responsiveness, but the overall feeling of the demo is excellent. If it's quite fun to just control the player then you know you're onto a winner as anything on top of the is just gravy. Or whipped cream. Whichever you prefer. Smiley
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« Reply #27 on: March 04, 2007, 07:22:11 AM »

Very nice.
At first I had problems with the sluggishness of progression, but then I realized everything went much faster if I used the jump button more generously.
Only little problem: When I'm standing at the bottom of a 3 tile wall and jumping, it's strange that I am not able to hang on to the edge because visually it seems to be possible.
I know it might be better for level design not to be able to do it, so maybe the anim could be changed a little bit to reflect this impossibility? Right now it's a bit counter intuitive.
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« Reply #28 on: March 04, 2007, 07:29:01 AM »

Alright. Some feedback for you, sirs! Let me preface this by saying that I'm digging it, and I can see it polishing up into something really noteable. Also, a lot of these suggestions are on minute details which I don't think anyone other than me particularly cares about.



Down Ladder to Crouch Bug
Bug: Coming down off a ladder (not jumping off) guy goes to stand, not crouch. Have to re-press down to crouch. Repeatable every time. Is this just because there's no bottomladder->crouch animation? Or something more sinister?

Terminal Velocity
When you fall far, you start to really fall fast. Can I recommend you add some terminal velocity so that he actually starts to sort of "float" down after a bit? - Not TOO extremely floaty, ofcourse! I was going to write out how I'd do it ( using a "velDelta.y = 1.0f - exp(-fabs(vel.y))" trick - so, essentially, "diminishing returns" on acceleration - feels less jarring than a simple threshold value for T.V.) but I'm sure you have your own favoured approach.

Grip -> Stand Animation

I hope this still goes in, and is played fairly fast. That'll make the "diagonal" trick (holding "up" while running into a block to climb it) quicker, and maybe look a bit smoother? I don't know. It should also lower the animation length, even without being sped up, because you at the moment, you go grip -> crouch -> stand, so you're going through, what, atleast 12 animations as opposed to just the 8 in the vault-up? So yeah, I hope that'll speed it up and help address points DrDoctors made about waiting for animations. As you know I definately didn't want me animations to take away too much agency.


Sprinting Acceleration?
I like that you reach your max velocity really, basically immediately. That's good for little nudges to get pixel perfect. Could you also add a slow acceleration on top of that which helps you build up speed so that you could go for 4-5 block gaps if you have enough space to runup? Like terminal velocity, the acceleration could be deminishing returns - quick to accelerate at first, and then harder and harder as you go on. You could speed the walk animation with it. I guess what I'm trying to get at is the idea that you want that precision you've already got at low speeds, but that it might be nice to cover open expanses a bit quicker - when you're accelerating, you feel like you're able to DO something to get faster, whereas with a fixed speed, you're maxed out immediately, and just feel like you're waiting. Might lead to some leet trick jumping, too Smiley

Alternate Jump Anim
The current jump anim is perfect for fairly vertical jumping. Does the other one really not fit for lateral ones? Could you switch between them fluidly based on a lateral velocity threshold? If you were to do the over-drive acceleration (above) then it might become more and more useful. Don't mean to whine about it. Just saying, because I've only got the one animation in  Cry. And this game development was meant to be all about me, me, me, obviously.

Jump from Grip
I was thinking that it might be quite nice to be able to do a sort of half jump from a grip state - pushing away from the wall you're pointing at while jumping. It could help you to jump two blocks, and grip to another block. So yeah... not a big jump by any means, but certainly quite useful - could make chimney stack climbing possible?

Jump from Ladder?
Same as above, really. It feels a bit wrong to simply "detatch" from the ladder. Pressing left or right ought to do that. But pressing jump, for consistency, ought to move us "up" as we detatch, surely?

Additional Transition: Walk to Crawl
If you walk, and then move into crawl (so press right to diagonal down-right) you stop, go through the stand-crouch, then start crawling again. We could improve fluidity if we had an animation where you perhaps slightly dive/trip straight into a crawl from running, and don't stop moving while doing so.

Re: Exertion Lines
Yeah, the sweat things are cool in of themselves, but definately happen too much (and perhaps are a bit big?). Mea culpa. Pretty indulgent animation. However, if the Grip -> Stand animation is added (suggested above) you'll probably cut their use in half (although then you get other little bits of stuff going on in that animation... a sort of "collision" particle effect coming off the wall where he kicks it to vault up).

At the end of the day, it's your game, so although I will feel crushed that you don't use every single suggestion, whether or not they work well, I won't hold it against you.
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« Reply #29 on: March 04, 2007, 07:40:05 AM »

Why when he grabs onto a ledge after jumping does he keep looking at the screen, but when he climbs down into a dangly position he...doesn't?

It's just starting at a different position in the animation loop.  To keep things varied.

Is that... OK?  Tongue

It's fine to have them different, but in this case I'd switch them:

From a freerunning perspective, if you've just finished a cat leap (i.e. a jump which ends in the grip position) you'd be facing the wall or looking up it, anticipating a climb.

If you're coming down from the wall into a grip position, you'd be looking at the floor, or arching your neck around so that you can see the ground below/behind you, preparing for a drop.

So yeah, that's why it'd make perfect sense to switch those around.
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« Reply #30 on: March 04, 2007, 07:46:07 AM »

I think the perception of sluggishness arises from the fact that there's nothing to do. Later, a screen will be an entire level, even with sub sections containing puzzles and stuff, and moments of great excitement, etc.

There's no falldeath yet, so you'll just have to imagine dying when missing that jump.

Of course, later there could be three fall damage levels.

+ Slight *huff* crouch-landing delaying the player.
+ Falls on his ass, stars around his head, then gets up and shakes his dizzy head, possibly getting caught by an enemy on patrol in the meantime.
+ Death
+ Splat.

*Four* fall damage levels! Our four features... no, *Amongst* our features are fall damage levels such as...
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« Reply #31 on: March 04, 2007, 07:55:39 AM »

Hey, is BMcC still asleep? Let's draw funny things on his face and... oh, I mean...

Just because nobody said so yet, IT SUCKS HORRIBLY.

Ok, I'm obviously lying. It's awesome. The animations are smooth and connect very well, the gameplay seems well-paced and the controls are just right. And, of course, there is an awesome picture included with the game ( Kiss ).

But this has been said way too many times. Let me shorten my opinion:



Yes, the background is was a screenshot.
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Bezzy
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« Reply #32 on: March 04, 2007, 07:56:26 AM »

FallingAnimation
Definately need a falling animation. I noticed that when you just walk off some edge, you actually start the jump animation, so he looks at the heavens, rather than at where he's going to land. The falling animation should also follow in from the end of the jump animation, right?

Pixel Perfect Jump Bonus
Just a thought, and real gravy, but how about being awarded a score for managing a 3-block gap? A little sign pops up saying "Pixel Perfect!", flashing a marking of the trajectory of the jump you just completed? Diminishing returns on the bonus if you're just jumping the same gap over and over, or maybe only award the points the first time you do a particular gap of >=3 blocks. Hmm. Fair bit of work to remember which you have and haven't jumped. Just a thought though.
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« Reply #33 on: March 04, 2007, 08:44:49 AM »

And in my opinion, this game is meant to be played in Fullscreen.

Not if you have a LCD screen that is 1280x1024 pixels. Imo, the blurryness is horrible!

Couldn't you read the current resolution of the desktop (which is probably a 1:1 pixelmapping if the user isn't half-blind) and then upscale the fullscreen image to that resolution instead, with as close screen ratio as possible?

PS. Is this the right time to nitpick on animation frames & speed?
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« Reply #34 on: March 04, 2007, 09:26:12 AM »

Jolly good. As it happens, I have followed the exact same philosophy with my own game - enemies telegraph all their attack moves by at least 1-2 seconds. It does indeed work very well, providing people are sharp enough to stay aware. And you can't say I didn't play fair if you're not.

Hehe, awesome.  Yeah, I hope the end result will be the player never blaming the game for losing.

The only thing I didn't like was you can't get off of the ladder in the X direction, and you have to push the action key.

D-Mac suggested that for ledges, too.  I'll probably add that in.

Also, is the ceiling climb available? I wasn't able to find any places to try it out.

No, no ceiling climb.  I think that's to be more of a specialty maneuver.

bring on teh pushups!!!

They're in there!  Wink

1. When you jump and catch a ladder middair, it might be cool if instead of just locking onto it, his momentum followed through a bit so he swings off to the side, before completely grappling onto the rails. Maybe even one-handed, so it looks more dangerous.

Yeah, I want to have this.  The ladders need the most animation work I think, at this point.

2. While crawling, when you are about to approach a ladder and can't stand up, it might be cool if he did a somersault into the dangle animation, instead of just transitioning right to the dangle. Might look funny in the small space, but that would be badass.

Er... I guess if someone animates it, I could sneak it in.

Keep up the good work, wish there was something I could do to contribute (3D Balding?)

Yeah, we're tired of 2D.  Bring on the three dimensions!  :D

When I'm standing at the bottom of a 3 tile wall and jumping, it's strange that I am not able to hang on to the edge because visually it seems to be possible.

I'm just doing this all to Arne's specs.  And I thought about this when I was first putting jumping in, but the alternative is jumping becomes even lower (i.e., useless) and you can't clear 3 tile wide gaps.  Also, I don't think it looks like he can hang on now, 'cause his arms are too short!  Smiley

Down Ladder to Crouch Bug
Bug: Coming down off a ladder (not jumping off) guy goes to stand, not crouch. Have to re-press down to crouch. Repeatable every time. Is this just because there's no bottomladder->crouch animation? Or something more sinister?

Something more sinister like... I deliberately put that in?  I hated him always going into a crouch at the bottom of ladders.  Though I suppose a bottom-of-ladder animation would give the player time to take their hand off the down button...

Terminal Velocity
When you fall far, you start to really fall fast. Can I recommend you add some terminal velocity so that he actually starts to sort of "float" down after a bit?

Terminal Velocity will be in, don't worry.  I just needed to test the limits of the collision detection at this point.

Grip -> Stand Animation[/b]
I hope this still goes in, and is played fairly fast. That'll make the "diagonal" trick (holding "up" while running into a block to climb it) quicker, and maybe look a bit smoother? I don't know.

I'll put that in eventually.  I was the one who commissioned it, yeah?  Smiley  But the grip to crawl transitioned so splendidly with standing up, I moved on to something else.  Remember: This != finished game.

Sprinting Acceleration?
I like that you reach your max velocity really, basically immediately. That's good for little nudges to get pixel perfect. Could you also add a slow acceleration on top of that which helps you build up speed so that you could go for 4-5 block gaps if you have enough space to runup?

Well, now we're getting into completely altering Arne's concept.  I was going to play with the idea of a run on top of the walk, but I don't think it's something that's necessarily needed.  (How many open expanses are there going to be in a tightly-wound single-screen platform game?)

Alternate Jump Anim
The current jump anim is perfect for fairly vertical jumping. Does the other one really not fit for lateral ones? Could you switch between them fluidly based on a lateral velocity threshold? If you were to do the over-drive acceleration (above) then it might become more and more useful.

Yeah, right now you have too much air control.  There's no way of knowing if the player is going to do a fully lateral jump.  Also, didn't the animation have landing built into it?  That means it would only work for a single, specific jump.

Jump from Grip
I was thinking that it might be quite nice to be able to do a sort of half jump from a grip state - pushing away from the wall you're pointing at while jumping.

Again, I've thought about it, but it's altering Arne's design a great deal.

Jump from Ladder?
Same as above, really. It feels a bit wrong to simply "detatch" from the ladder. Pressing left or right ought to do that. But pressing jump, for consistency, ought to move us "up" as we detatch, surely?

Again again, design reasons.  Roll Eyes  I could maybe work in a little upward velocity, but I don't want it to damage level design by allowing you get to areas you shouldn't.

You know, a lot of these ideas are for a bigger (in play area) game.  Increasing the movement speed, adding in extra jumps -- this stuff spreads out the play area if the level designer wants challenges or to only allow a certain route or whatever.

I dunno about you, but I really like how compact and specific his movements are right now.

Additional Transition: Walk to Crawl
If you walk, and then move into crawl (so press right to diagonal down-right) you stop, go through the stand-crouch, then start crawling again. We could improve fluidity if we had an animation where you perhaps slightly dive/trip straight into a crawl from running, and don't stop moving while doing so.

That's a good idea!  I like that.  (One out of fifteen ain't bad, hahaha. :D  Just kidding of course.  Wink)

Re: Exertion Lines
Yeah, the sweat things are cool in of themselves, but definately happen too much (and perhaps are a bit big?).

I'll make em a little more subtle, then.  I mean, it's your animation.  Wink

I already removed all the other lines from it, if you remember them being there.

It's fine to have them different, but in this case I'd switch them:

Because, as we all know, this is Balding's Quest: Advanced Parkour Simulator.  :D

I don't like that he looks at the camera at all!  So I'm happy to change it.

Though, IIRC, one of the animations needed to transition into that frame...

Of course, later there could be three fall damage levels.

That's exactly what I wanted to do.  Especially the hitting the ground hard, kneeling thing.  With some white dust.  Grin

Hey, is BMcC still asleep? Let's draw funny things on his face and... oh, I mean...

Hahaha, awesome picture by the way.  :D

FallingAnimation
Definately need a falling animation. I noticed that when you just walk off some edge, you actually start the jump animation, so he looks at the heavens, rather than at where he's going to land. The falling animation should also follow in from the end of the jump animation, right?

That's already in place.  The only problem is Guy looking up in the first frame of the falling animation.  WHICH IS NOT MY DOING.  Lips Sealed

Pixel Perfect Jump Bonus
Just a thought, and real gravy, but how about being awarded a score for managing a 3-block gap?

Hahaha, nice.  Might be a little out of character, though.
« Last Edit: March 04, 2007, 09:29:49 AM by BMcC » Logged

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« Reply #35 on: March 04, 2007, 09:34:27 AM »

Just a note to say on my laptop screen, fullscreen doesn't work because my resolution just doesn't go down that far Sad

Mine too.  Cry

Not if you have a LCD screen that is 1280x1024 pixels. Imo, the blurryness is horrible!

True dat.  Cool

Couldn't you read the current resolution of the desktop (which is probably a 1:1 pixelmapping if the user isn't half-blind) and then upscale the fullscreen image to that resolution instead, with as close screen ratio as possible?

Yeah, as the Arsecast Host suggested early on, this game is going to support every resolution and ratio known to man.  Plus 2x pixels, and maybe more.  Just... not right now.  Sad

PS. Is this the right time to nitpick on animation frames & speed?

Not at all!  (::sigh::  What's the problem?)
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« Reply #36 on: March 04, 2007, 09:52:09 AM »

Re:  Perceived Slowness --  You're wrong!  Anyone who seriously complained about this is wrong.  Tongue

There are a lot of great suggestions/ideas comin' in, but when it comes to the "slowness" or whatever...  I think the real problem is that the game isn't Mario.  Don't expect the character to move a certain way before you play!  Or, if you do, expect him to move as described in the design concept, at least.

This game is going to be less bouncy and more ponderous than the average platformer.  Though, I think the other half of the "sluggishness" riddle is people commenting before they're used to the controls.  Every button should not do everything all the time.  The controls are specific, and immediately responsive.  (I don't know what you're thinking, Graham!  Huh?)  Animations that "lock" your movement never take more than, what, a split second?  And they don't happen until the moment you tell them too.

Sure, things will be smoothed out and refined and input will be taken into account.  And when gameplay elements are introduced, we'll definitely tweak things to fit.  But this is the style of the game, folks!

I mean, I can fly through the FMJ level no problem, and the ledge climbing's only been in for a few days.  I'm convinced that once the player has played through the introductory stage or two, he'll have no trouble with control.

Again, I will take all input into account, of course.  (Btw, I already thought the ladders needed the most work, so I'll probably increase the climbing-to-top speed, add sliding down, and allow dropping off with left and right.)
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« Reply #37 on: March 04, 2007, 10:32:25 AM »

All fair rebuttals, BMcC. I can't fault any of it. I just have to apologize if I came off overly critical.

I make suggestions not demands.
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« Reply #38 on: March 04, 2007, 10:34:07 AM »

Every button should not do everything all the time.  The controls are specific, and immediately responsive.  (I don't know what you're thinking, Graham!  Huh?)  Animations that "lock" your movement never take more than, what, a split second?  And they don't happen until the moment you tell them too.

I just mean that, for instance if you tap duck and then decide you don't want to duck then it takes about a second to cycle into the duck animation and out of it before you can then move horizontally. It's the exact same thing as happens in the original Prince Of Persia, and I'm not saying it's a bug, I'm just saying it leads to a different style of gameplay (ie, like Flashback versus Mario) and that its a pity you can't have the best of both worlds of a super versatile character without the need for lengthy animations which take time, or at least some way of shortcutting those animations when the system senses they're getting in the way of what the user wants to do (ie. if I'm pressing sideways when I release crouch then rather than stopping horizontally, getting up and then walking sideways it keeps the horizontal motion throughout, likewise having to press jump to disengage from gripping onto a surface, instead of just down, or a further push in the direction away from the surface. Just little things. Smiley
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« Reply #39 on: March 04, 2007, 10:43:45 AM »

I just have to apologize if I came off overly critical.

No no no, not at all!  I think I'm just irritable, 'cause I feel like I have to explain all these things that I've thought out so thoroughly.  But your input is invaluable, man.  Smiley

[...]its a pity you can't have the best of both worlds of a super versatile character without the need for lengthy animations which take time, or at least some way of shortcutting those animations when the system senses they're getting in the way of what the user wants to do. [...]

I totally understand what you mean.  And I do want to shoot for the best of both worlds with this, really.  I think it'll come together when more animations are in place (that is, for specific shortcuts like crouching from a run, climbing into a standing position, etc.) and movement/animation speeds are tweaked.  (Which they are being constantly.)

That "every button all the time" comment wasn't directed at you, by the way.  Smiley  Actually, it wasn't directed at anyone in particular -- it was just me getting aggravated.  Roll Eyes
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