I'm just so happy there's a day every year where we can put aside our differences and agree that Independence Day is the greatest movie ever (Yesterday)
I really don't understand the point of Unity's $75 a month thing when there's a 12 month minimum... :I (3 days ago)
2015 - 6 - 22 / 5:14 pm / general
Whoa what is this! I opened up Photoshop and I'm actually working on an animation for Super Sky Sisters!
Just a simple little animation for the squid guy enemy:
2015 - 6 - 17 / 7:51 pm / general
One of the last things on my to do list (before animations) for Super Sky Sisters was optimizing the crazy results screen that players will see after a session. This is a screen that shows a graph of your orb's health, each player's health, and your score over time. On top of that you also see the timeline of the game events that the players had to endure.
My first attempt at this was pretty crude but I did whatever I had to do to get it done. I basically just have some dictionaries with timestamps as keys. My first attempt at this screen would just render out the graph by iterating through all of the keys of each dictionary and plot the value using a draw line method in Otter. This worked fine except the players can also zoom and pan around the graph. Needless to say on long play sessions this lagged horribly since whenever the graph moved or zoomed it had to redraw the entire thing based on the new zoom and pan values. At least it only rendered the graph when it needed to be updated though, right?
My first attempt at fixing this was moving the graph rendering to a coroutine. The coroutine would be fired off when the graph needed an update, so you could see the graph redrawing itself without the game itself slowing to a crawl. So while the framerate maintained itself at 60, the graph updating was still very slow. I tried making two different surfaces for the graph to switch to, and render to one behind the scenes and swap it out when it was done. Some kinda fancy double buffering or whatever, but the fact remained that the graph rendering was just way too slow for this.
My solution was to render different zoom levels of the graph up front at the start of the scene. This causes a small hiccup at the scene transition, but after that everything is as smooth as butter, or something like that. There are 4 different graphs that are rendered, and when the players zoom in and out the graphs are being scaled up and down. When the scale reaches a certain threshold the graph will be switched out for the higher zoom level one. The final result is that you can zoom and pan freely and there's no lag at all. I guess this is sort of like mipmapping? Maybe? I don't know, but it works.
2015 - 6 - 4 / 3:21 pm / general
Hey I'm being productive! Mostly. I'm still 'crastinatin' on the animations I have yet to do for Super Sky Sisters, but I am now getting some final stuff done on other aspects of it. I've been tackling some of the sounds lately and throwing in some temporary music so I can set up the music management system.
For sounds I'm turning to a new program I found on the internet called LabChirp. It's similar to the great and eternal BFXR, but it creates a different style of sound that's (to me) more akin to the old console sound chips.
In other news I'm also working on the balance of the game. I've gone through and tweaked a lot of the game events in regards to how they grow more difficult over time, and I've also done some reworking of the difficulty levels that can be selected at the start of the game. My goal is to have a single play session last around 10 minutes, and during those 10 minutes I want the player(s) to be able to defeat all three of the game's bosses.
2015 - 5 - 30 / 4:54 pm / general
Yes, the procrastination continues on the animations for Super Sky Sisters. I've been diving more into doing general drawing and art stuff lately and spending a lot of time with the ole Manga Studio... but this of course isn't really pushing the game closer to completion. I mean, this is pretty much all I have left:
The enemy animations task will be expanded for each enemy, but aside from that everything is pretty much straight forward. I am working a little bit on getting music and sound in there but with just placeholder stuff for each. Balancing the game is also proving to be a little difficult as it's really hard to see the effects of each change without playing a bunch of full games.
I'm at the point of the project where I think I'm spending more time playing the game than working on it since a lot of what's left requires complete play session to test. Sometimes I toss around the idea of making a simple AI that will play the game but I feel like that's just going to be opening up a dark dimension of infinite iterations and procrastination.
I think I'm going to have to super buckle down and do some time boxing to finish this out.
2015 - 5 - 16 / 4:14 pm / general
Super Sky Sisters is almost done, but I'm having a lot of trouble actually bringing it across the finish line.
The very last thing to do on the game is animations and this is something that I struggle a lot with usually. Animation is probably my weakest skill amongst my game development related talents, and I usually save it for the very end of the project if I can help it. Offspring Fling had almost no animations until I was about 95% done with the game... I think the entire game was totally playable start to finish with all of the secret content and everything before I did a single animation on any of the enemies.
Since I'm not that good at animations I usually get very flustered when trying to work on them. I constantly do not produce results that are good enough for my own taste, which leads to me being very discouraged, which leads to me not liking to do animations, which leads to me procrastinating on doing animations even when it's the last thing to do in the project.
I should probably stop making excuses and just do it because that's the only way I'll be able to get this game done! But first.. I think I'll go work on sounds for a little while.
2015 - 5 - 5 / 4:03 pm / general
Super Sky Sisters has a solo mode! But it's not for the faint of heart. It's going to be pretty tough controlling both of the sisters at the same time.
Yeah, that looks pretty awful, but is probably the one of the easiest ways I can explain the controls before things get crazy. The game wasn't really designed for solo mode so I hope that most people play co-op, but I understand that not everyone has the opportunity to do so and probably wants to just blow up stuff on their own.
It is actually pretty playable in solo mode until you end up crossing player 2 with player 1. Then your brain melts because the sister on the left is controlled with the joystick on the right of your controller and vice versa, but if you can manage to overcome that madness then it should be a pretty fun way to play the game.
Hi there, my name is Kyle, and I'm a kid disguised as a grown up. I'm making video games and living the indie game developer life in Tempe, Arizona. Here you will find my thoughts, games, websites, doodles, and other stuff like that. I worked on Snapshot, Offspring Fling, and a whole bunch of other games. I also created and maintain Otter, a 2d game making framework. If you want to get a hold of me use the form on the bottom of the page, leave a comment, or just tweet at me. I try to post three times a week. Thanks for stoppin' by! You're the coolest.
- alec holowka
- bill pullman
- dev log
- game jam
- good times
- kings men
- ninja slash
- offspring fling
- screen sat
- sky sisters
- space sushi
- june 2015 (13)
- may 2015 (12)
- april 2015 (14)
- march 2015 (14)
- february 2015 (13)
- january 2015 (14)
- december 2014 (14)
- november 2014 (13)
- october 2014 (14)
- september 2014 (14)
- august 2014 (11)
- july 2014 (10)
- june 2014 (13)
- may 2014 (13)
- april 2014 (13)
- march 2014 (14)
- february 2014 (15)
- january 2014 (15)
- december 2013 (14)
- november 2013 (15)
- october 2013 (13)
- september 2013 (14)
- august 2013 (15)
- july 2013 (10)
- june 2013 (14)
- may 2013 (14)
- april 2013 (15)
- march 2013 (13)
- february 2013 (15)
- january 2013 (3)
- december 2012 (1)
- november 2012 (2)
- october 2012 (1)
- september 2012 (4)
- august 2012 (1)
- july 2012 (1)
- may 2012 (1)
- april 2012 (1)
- march 2012 (1)
- february 2012 (1)
- january 2012 (1)
- november 2011 (2)
- september 2011 (1)
- july 2011 (1)
- june 2011 (1)
- may 2011 (1)
- april 2011 (2)
- march 2011 (4)
- february 2011 (4)
Do you want to make a Let's Play of one of my games, or a just a video featuring footage of my games? You have my full permission to do so! Even if you are monetizing your videos, you still have my full permission to use any footage from any of my games. Go for it!