Friday, 23 May 2014

Duck Shooting Day

Been another very productive day which has hopefully concluded in a very solid build we can put out to our alpha testers later tonight.  I gave myself the luxury of doing 3 hours testing on this build, and with the fixes which stop the characters jitterbugging, running off for no good reason and generally buzzing about in strange zig-zags, we now have a battle field worthy of an FPS gamer.

Here is the last level I created, to test the new scripting for defensive characters. Placing about ten guys behind sand bags and told them to duck down, the pop up and fire, then duck back down again when they felt it appropriate, then gave them player some sand blocks and some weaponry, and the stage was set. Giving him 5000 health points helped too!

Here are the tweaks done between 9AM and 5PM from the fabulous bejewelled trinity of Reloaded coders:

  • Crash with MEMBLOCK on new optimized grass generation
  • Slow AI with new DarkAI tweaks
  • When you load a HUGE level which WILL crash the SYSTEM MEMORY (DVADER's level), it crashes with a message text 'STATIC' and then load the wrong level back in. Ensure the correct level is loaded (the one just before Test Level was clicked) and make sure the static text message is removed/improved
  • Replated to the above, turns out an old level loaded into new engine, then saved, will set animspeed to zero, which in turn creates CLONE OBJECTs for all entities like this as the parent object animspeed is 100, even if the object does not animate at all. CLONE eats memory.
  • The CLEAR sky still has a gap seam when scrolling, so close this by creating new alpha channel
  • WHen health is recharging, use a yellow atriobe effect on the health panel until charging stops
  • Each time Test Level is clicked, the user is waiting upto NINE SECONDS for the veg process. See if we can skip, optimize this if there is no grass/no change in grass as this will immediately improve the test level experience
  • Enemies run away less
  • Improve magnum and colt fire sounds
  • Look at strange running behaviour in Ricks'video at time stamp 5:25 and ensure the character does not run away from player for 20 seconds, and stop it
  • Dave to look at why the AI BOT jitters between two positionsraidly as the cus of the visual angle change jitter we see up close AND in distance
  • Need to add code to calm this artifact of the AI BOT/VIS OBJ changing angle too rapidly!
  • Rick - Can still push into enemy body - new code to prevent player pushing into any character
  • Change FLINCH reaction so its BACKWARD for hit from front, and FORWARD when hit from back
  • Rick V1.008 - Check that the sniper at VERY CLOSE RANGE can take out characters in ONE SHOT (test!!)
  • V1.007 hide the crosshair for the rifle to reflect BAD accuracy
  • Prevent player from running within 60 units of ANY character - use character controller velocity
  • Played two compounds, then loaded get to river and got the corrupt fpm issue
  • Stand in the building with the key and shoot the AI's through the window, sometimes they start to glitch when trying to get to you
  • Where were the running enemies going?
  • We have in editor properties - view cone angle and always active - tie in entity property values
  • When save standalone the sky is not retained

It's been a LONG week it feels, but we have produced a playable level that is starting to feel like a 'proper' game, with character who evade, flank, run away when hurt, exhibit some group behavior and strike a balance of difficulty when combating against the player.  It is encouraging that we achieved this with a single enemy weapon, which means when we add more weapon types the game play dynamics will explode into many possibilities!

Going to take the weekend to chill out back in my home town of Wigan, and do some light property renovation to unwind. They say a change is as good as a rest and wallpapering is pretty far removed from coding a 3D engine :)  I wish everyone in the UK a great bank holiday Monday, and for the rest of the planet have a super weekend and if it's hot, remember to celebrate good weather with a beer or three!

NOTE: I had 15 minutes spare so I had a fiddle about with some store content and fog settings, and wanted to share before I REALLY switch off my PC for the week.

One thing I like about Reloaded already is the number of styles you can create with just the graphics slider panel. It would be tempting to go the whole hog and offer more radical style choices like cartoon shading (like in borderlands) or monochrome theme (Sin City).  This way the same game assets would be transformed based on the post process and shader adjustments.  Anyhoo, a thought for another day...


  1. Now this really starts to shape up, enjoy the weekend + bank holiday ;)

  2. Cartoon shaders and other effects would be a great addition! I actually made one object that had a cell shaded look (well sort of) by mistake. It had a more painted feel than a normal texture. The ability to have different shader effects would have great benefits to games design. Even better if you could have the ability to switch for say a blurred speed effect when you run fast etc. I'm sure many people could come up lots of ideas for this sort of thing. Night vision effects and more!
    Have a nice break over the weekend!

  3. Enjoy the weekend Lee,you and the team have earned it.

  4. See look how much better those shots look without bloom. Everything is crisp and clear and feels great.

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  6. @lee just wondering mate seeing as health regen has been scripted in can we affect the health via LUA yet? Just wondering as would like to put something in the competition level. Just something like PlayerHealth = PlayerHealth - 100 or something

  7. PlayerHealth not plumbed in yet :)

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