Tea ‘n’ Cake


Progressions

Coding. It’s pretty much all I’ve been doing for the last week. The blog is lagging behind what I’m doing and I don’t feel the slightest bit guilty about it. Not least of all because I won’t be doing anything for the next 2-3 weeks as I’ll be on holiday, far far away in Shang Hai, and even a tiny bit of Japan.

But here is the good part! A lot of stuff has been done, and not just the funky behind the scenes stuff that none of you really care about. The best way to see things happening is just to watch the video, in which I got a little help from Apple and Kirin for the discussion (Help may be a strong word), buts let’s just go through a few details here for those who care about such things.

Spawners:

I created spawners that have loads of variables.they can spawn any GameObject, all cached beforehand so it’s not instantiating at run time, or any range of GameObjects, each with percentile weightings.. They can have a rate. They can be emitted in bursts. They can be launched with a velocity or a force. In a direction, between two angles, or sprayed out in all directions. They can be rotated or spun, and they can emit from a point, or a box or sphere area. Cool yeah? Did we use it to spray mines out or slow spinning girders that you need to move around. No!. All we have done so far is make if spew out generic rocks.

Teleporters:

Oh Yeah baby. These funky things can be circle or box based, and can teleport you to an array of points. You have options as to whether or not you  maintain your velocity, maintain your direction, orientation, and they can be selective as to what they do and don’t teleport. We haven’t really done much with these either.

ObjectActivators:

I don’t have a better name for these yet. Basically they are trigger based switches that can do a bunch of stuff. Specifically, activate any number of animators when you enter them, or exit them, or if you choose, if you shoot at them. They can also play a sound, or sequence of sounds. They could be used to make a turbine charge and do stuff, but alas, all we have actually done with them so far is move some walls around a bit.

PainZones and DeathZones:

These do exactly what you’d expect. They cause pain, and death: an apt metaphor for life in most respects really.

GravityZones:

These are zones, that have gravity. Tweakable gravity with a simulated mass, and a choice between squared or linear falloff. Linear almost always works better in gameplay terms. It can also repulse things if you like. So far, we’ve only used this for a level with a singularity in the center. Fun bendy bullets.

The next blog will also about Space Time but for those of you waiting for The Living Dungeon Fix it looks like that will finally be coming at the start of March. If not, it’ll be Josh’s fault! That’s right folks. Josh is back and he fully expects to break everything! Again! Seriously though, it’ll be nice to have him in again.

At this point I’d normally say that if you want to know more you can get in touch with us on social media, but since us, is practically just me, and I’m going to be on the other side of the planet for 3 weeks, your best bet is actually e-mail. Support(at)radiationburn.net. Those outlets do still exist and can be interesting though, so check  out. TwitterFacebook, and Youtube

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Confessions

I needed to get this blog out here before I really get down to talking about new things. So I’m wanting to make you all aware of my baggage, or at least a small amount off it.

My first confession is that there has been no progress on fixing that Xbox One Living Dungeon bug since Christmas. It’s 99% of the way there but that last 1% is proving to be difficult in more ways than one. Especially given the code being 3 years old, and especially, especially, because I had no hand in writing it, and Chantelle is both a hundred miles away now, and can’t remember anything about this code that is useful. Everything about the game seems to now be working except connecting to a multiplayer game, because it says it is already connected 🙁

If I’m going to press ahead with trying to fix this it will take quite a time commitment and a fair bit of research. However, if I take too long the unity/Xbox engine may very well change again and leave me in exactly the position I got stuck in before where I have to rebuild chunks of the game just to get it up and running.

Comics

The second confession is that I think what I really need, is help. I’m also aware of the concept that by merely asking for help I might forfeit any right to it. That’s just one of the many odd rules of human society that I accept. There are potentially two people I know that might be able to help me out for a price that I can actually afford. Even if either of them do help me, That’s no guarantee that they will be able read through the code for Living Dungeon and Dead Exit, and then update the Living Dungeon to function again.

Pixels

My third confession is related to the first two, and that is that the problem I face with doing this may admittedly be as much of a psychological barrier than a technical one. Radiationburn and by extension myself, are currently caught between obligations to the past and an uncertain future. Finances are always a perpetual concern for a small business but this runs a lot deeper than that. It’s fundamentally an existential crisis, both as a consideration of where do I end and RadiationBurn begin, but also the simpler, how do I balance all the things I want to do with all the things that I need to do, and all the things that are a good idea.

Easter_02

As is the very British way of things, I’ve distracted myself from my problems, by helping other people deal with theirs. Most notably this month, by creating a piece of software for helping with a reading disability. It was enjoyable and I hope I can help more in future, For now though, I don’t want to talk  about it further.

Redacted

As depressing as all of that is, I’m going to swing round (gradually) to more positive things by the end of this blog. Firstly, on a trivial note, this “blog” received an award. It looks like this.

Award

I couldn’t tell you if this was just some random scam, or someone legitimately thought my bipolar ramblings about my deving life were worthy of acknowledgement. It doesn’t really matter, I’m not going to do anything about it. I don’t do this blog for attention. Sometimes I do it to entertain, sometimes I do it to inform, and other times I do it just to scrape some melancholy off my brain and dump it on the page.

Space Time is still going, and still called Space Time. It started off as a game jam but I’d be lying if I said it was just a frivolous little project like “the unseen evil” or “desperate runs” was. It’s a project that has become very personal to me for a number of reasons that I’m not sure I can communicate effectively. For now let me just say that I’m immensely enjoying all the coding, but I’m also aware that at some point I’m going to have to flip the switch that will change me into artist mode. I just want to get a few more features done first.

The next blog will be about Space Time almost exclusively, and will feature… well, features. Things like spawners, teleporters, and gravity wells. It will also feature the obligatory ‘summoning the devil’ bug. Of course, if anyone actually wants to talk about stuff I can do that. Just get a hold of me on the on the social media. TwitterFacebook, and Youtube

I do actually mean that. Get in touch!  I prefer to talk in person and look people in the eye, but if nothing else social media is a decent place to start a conversation. Bye for now.

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Happy New Abstract Time Period!

I hope you have all had a good Christmas and a Happy New Year, whatever you got up to. I spent the time with my family mostly, eating too much, playing games, and generally just having fun. Part of that fun was accepting that I was away from the office and simply couldn’t keep wrestling with the Xbox Living Dungeon stuff. I had to just put it down and forget about it for two weeks.

That meant that if I felt like doing some game dev stuff (which I almost always do),  I was going to have to just play, and/or do a bit more on the little arcade arena game, Space Time! I did both in fact. I spent several days making Space Time work in almost exactly the same way as it worked before, except more abstractly.

So on the surface the game looks and plays almost exactly as it did in the version on Itch.IO, but under the hood things are now very different.

1.All the bits are bits and not a monolithic thingy:

SpaceTimeFirstTimerPlayers

Before the ship was one thing with the functionality of a Plasma Torpedo Launcher, a Mine Layer, and an Autocannon Turret. Now it is a ship, that HAS a Plasma Torpedo Launcher, and HAS a Mine Layer, and HAS an Autocannon Turret. That fundamental difference means that the ship doesn’t have to have any of those things, or may have multiple of those things, or even different things. The technical term is encapsulation, but what that really means is we can chop and change things going forward, add new weapons and possibly even different ships.

2.The Ship no Longer takes input from the controller:

This might sound counter intuitive, and in this process I certainly did a few things that were counter intuitive(for the greater good of course). Before now, the Plasma Torpedo Launcher waited for an action from the input manager which was directly taken from the controller. The ship movement did a similar thing, as did the turret, and the mine layer, etc, etc. There was even a nice state controller so that the ship knew which mode it was in and so which actions it could perform. That is all gone, including surprisingly, the state machine. Instead, the whole thing has been replaced by an entity controller that takes input, and passes it on to the ship or ship parts as generic instructions. This is a long term strategy that ties into the next thing.

3.The Ship is no longer the Player. The Player is no longer the Controller ID:

SpaceTimeFirstTimerPlayers2

The second part of that statement was tricky to do neatly but what it means is that, whichever controller the player presses A on, that is player 1. Simple right? “Sure, but why on earth did you stop the ship being the player” is what you might ask if you had no become bored of my nonsense and stopped reading already. The answer to that is two girls one cup. Metaphorically of course. players can now select which ship they are so they can both control a single ship. Having a second player on your ship offers an instant advantage as they can man the turret while you fly about. They can also manoeuvre while you turn, or even shoot the main gun while the first player focuses on dodging. Longer term this also means we can add new functionality to the ship so that other players can do special functions or control different weapons.

SpaceTimeFirstTimerPlayers3

It’s all very silly and very exciting, even if it did leave the temporary front end of the game in a terrible mess. Ah well. If any of this tickles you and you want to know more. Get in touch on Social media as usual. TwitterFacebook, and Youtube . Bye for now.

 

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A Painful Archaeological Adventure

For the last couple of weeks I’ve spent  most of my time scrutinizing the ancient scrolls. By that I mean editing really really old code from The Living Dungeon. I’m absolutely determined to get it updated on the Xbox but it’s a huge task.  The code was not the best to begin with as Chantelle […]

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Making Knots, and Gravity Wells

  This week I finally managed to get the proper release build working for The Living Dungeon. That’s one step closer to an update. The next problem is fixing an unusual issue with the dialog in the cutscenes being off to the side, and the in game HUD not scaling with the fit to window […]

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Pulling at Threads

Been messing around with a few things this week. I’d love to say that it has all gone very smoothly but that is far from the truth. The first piece of good news is that we finally got The Living Dungeon working with Unity 5.6. The bad news on that front, is that we haven’t […]

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Dead Stuff + Explosions

Dead Exit got another review this week. It was another 8/10. That seems to be the consensus among the review giving community. The pessimist in me was expecting more hate from the people who would pick it up for 10 minutes and just say “Nope”, or from people blaming the game for when the game fails […]

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The World Keeps Turning

Despite the apocalypse, things keep moving along. We’ve uploaded a new PC version of Dead Exit with some little fixes, including a fix for a super rare multiplayer bug, and some minor visual poopy bits (That is a technical term). That is probably the most pertenant thing that’s being dealt with. We are also aware […]

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Half a Week Later.

Dead Exit came out on Halloween. It’s far too early to tell whether or not it did ok. We won’t really know for sure for a couple of months. Reviews have been fine. We’ve had a decent number of 8s and also a few 7s, so nothing to complain about there really. There is no […]

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Dead Exit Enters! A Halloween Special

Dead Exit is coming out for Xbox on Halloween. Wait! That’s today! So the first question is… Why haven’t you bought it yet?!?! In fact if you go off and buy it now I’ll totally forgive you for not bothering to read the rest of today’s blog post. I’ll continue for those of you who have […]

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