Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Foxlike Tech Demo Release

I did some work in an attempt to create a single coherent level.  It needs a boss, but is otherwise a showcase of the games current state.  It shows off the system fairly well.  You may need to run it in compatibility mode.

Get It here: Foxlike4117.zip

It has been awhile since I've looked at it, but there are some cool things going on there.  I added time manipulation a little while ago and everything runs really, really smoothly.  The controls are probably the best in the genre, so that's neat.  I worked on those a fair bit.

What is Foxlike?

Foxlike is a rail based shooter, much like Star Fox.  Which is where it gets its name.  It takes place in space, which is great.

Controls:

I went with a uniquely PC based approach to the control scheme.  I though of other things, but decided to run with a computers strength and ignore how one might build such a control scheme on a console.  I also added some unique mechanics which no one else has.
Movement: WASD moves you around like a typical third person shooter, except instead of going forward, you go up or down

Shooting: Move the mouse to aim and left click to attack.  You can also select different weapons with numbers 1-4. 2-4 have limited ammo.

Time Manipulation:
Here is where my novelty is, at least within the genre.  While Star Fox has a boost/brake mechanic.  This game replace that with the manipulation of the force known as time.  Fun stuff!

R - send you forward in time without entering the intermediate space
F - slows time, but allows you to fire at a high rate
V - Reverses time, does weird things
right-click.  Allows you do dodge sideways much like when you press R.

Other Design Decisions:

Conveyance:
Foxlike does not through things at you like you've never seen, it introduces game-play elements over time.  In the case of an enemy, you'll see one so you have a chance to learn how it operates.  Then you'll see some more so you can get a feel for it.  Then that enemy will be apart of the game and cruelly mixed with other elements in order to make a challenging and engaging experience.  Don't say we didn't warn you.

Palette:
Its important to have this pop and be distinguishable.  For this reason, I chose to make the main characters ship red, so its stands out against the enemy colors which so far or green, grey, blue and yellow.  Objects and obstacles are grey.  Ideally when you see something you can get an idea of what it's going to do.

-Liam

A Quick C# 'Game' in XNA


It never really got finished, but I figured I'd post it anyway.

ArcanusValiant.zip

You may need some redistributable, I'm not particularly sure.  It isn't much, but I did solidify my C# skills and give me experience with Microsoft's XNA library.  I used visual studio to make it and all in all it worked pretty well for a few days of tinkering.


-Liam

Monday, May 28, 2012

I feel like the Song of Ice and Fire Novels Have been Going Down Hill


The first few are awesome, but then they seem to get worse as time goes on.  Not that the writing, characters or events get worse, but it seems to be cumbersome.

The scope has continually increased, and now I think the series is buckling under its own weight.  Here is a graph of the number of "point of view" characters in each book.




The first book had only 8 POV characters. This really worked.  It was concise and the information you didn't have made it exciting.  You only had bits and pieces of the puzzle.  It made things suspenseful and was really well written.  Character arcs happen and things move forward. All in all awesome.

When we hit a feast for crows we had 12 and a lot of them didn't seem all that necessary.  This made the book more of a slog as we followed people who weren't really moving the plot forward, or worse were moving it backwards.  Sometimes you would know a lot more about a characters situation than they did and I found this made it dull.   Not only where they doing something boring, but they did it for a long time.

Spending less time with each character meant we couldn't know them as well or see them develop as much.  The pace slowed and often you had to follow characters you weren't invested in.  That sucks.

A Dance with Dragons has 18 characters.  More than double the first book.  It shows.  The problems I mentioned previously become worse.  The series has lost its concise feel and I'm following a lot of characters that either:
  1. I have no investment in
  2. Have just been introduced
  3. May not ever have another chapter
  4. Do not forward the story
Its hard to do a critique of the books and how they're written, I'm not qualified really, but I can tell you this:

I read through the first four books at a fevered pace.  Polishing off each in about a week to a week and half and moving on to the next one.

I have been reading the 5th for 6 months.  Its not really grabbing me anymore.  I think I've explained why.

One of the cool things about the series was that anyone could die.  No plot armor.  Maybe that should happen.  Let's do some dead-heading, so the rest of the tree can grow roses again.

-Liam

Saturday, February 18, 2012

Made an Image Filter in C

It is a blur filter.  It is slow, but I like the results:


I used LodePNG to load the image and then made the filter from scratch in C. It isn't very fast or really very good, but it works! I good black triangle for image manipulation!

-Liam

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Intro and Menu Screen

Hi Everyone, I beefed up the presentation a bit and here is what I have.  A short opening bit saying I make the game and a simplistic yet nifty title screen.





I like em!

-Liam

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Awesome Ribs Recipe

Hi Everyone, I don't want to lose this recipe, so I'm putting it up here on Blogger.

Ingredients

  • 5 lbs of ribs (approx)
  • garlic salt
  • 1 cup of ketchup
  • 1/4 cup vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  • 1 teaspoon ground mustard
  • 1 teaspoon celery seed
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper

Instructions

Preheat oven to 350F.

Place ribs in a deep baking dish. You probably don't have to grease it, ribs bring their own.

Garlic salt them like nobodies business. Can you use too much. I don't know?

Put 'em in the oven for 45 minutes...uncovered.

While that is going on mix all the other ingredients together to get your awesome rib sauce. Perhaps add other things you like in - Tabasco sauce anyone?

When the ribs are done, take em out, drain the pan - you will have to.
Spread the sauce on the ribs like a champ and put it back in the oven for 45 minutes. Maybe basting a few times occasionally.

After they're done pull em out and enjoy.

-Liam

Friday, February 10, 2012

Foxlike Class Diagram

This more or less how its current state in terms of objects and what is inherits what.



The white arrows detail inheritance and the black ones detail interaction.  What touches what.  There is a bit more interaction than is detailed, but that would have made everything a mess.

-Liam

Our Internet is in Trouble

Do your part and help stop our internet from being locked down:




-Liam

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

My God It's Full of Levels!

None of which are more than an 3D icon.  Still it was fun to fill it up.  I'm kind of a fan of the ultra low poly planets.  It seems to work well.

-Liam

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Added A Level Select Screen

I have tentatively titled the campaign Ganithracks Malice, mostly because it is what I came up with when I wanted to test the title bar and also because it doesn't contain a V, which I haven't implimented yet.  I only have one level Icon right now, so I just put down Earth --which has clearly been rendered in the highest of detail-- three times. 

The greyed out ones are not yet selectable as you've got to beat Earth before you can move on to Earth 2 and then you have to beat Earth 2 before you can do Earth 3.  The cool thing is you can do arbitrary dependencies which should allow for fun and varied campaigns with multiple paths.  With this additional menu, it seems much, much more like a game.

-Liam