Friday, November 14, 2014

HW 15 / Project Status

List of things implemented by me :
Models:
  1. Main Map
  2. Start menu
  3. End menu
  4. Player
  5. 90 Buildings with Textures
  6. NURBS Roads
  7. NURBS Tracks
  8. Planes
  9. Water
  10. Skydome
  11. Moon

Scripts:
  1. Player Controls
  2. Player Vision 
  3. Player Death Logic
  4. Building Destruction
  5. Debris Cleaner
  6. Dragon motion
  7. Dragon logic
  8. Menu selection animations
  9. Flashlight Scripts
  10. Modified Water Motion
  11. Replacement Logic

I have got almost all my jobs done (Needs more finesse though) and would try to make the game work better for now.


PROBLEMS I FACED :
1] The major problem was that NURBS path can sometimes go away from the normal, making path tracing impossible.
2] Objects on NURB path tended not to merge, needed to recalculate normals.
3] Ran out of memory as my game crossed 2GB of RAM. Had to create a memory swap code (which also failed) after verifying with blender forums, I noticed that the game was just too large for a single scene and would require breaking it up into a 16 X 16 Scenes (256 Scenes) to make it viable at high quality.
4] To counter the Scenes problem, I had to drop a massive amount of vertices by individually deleting mesh vertices and decimating/dissolving whenever possible.
5] The dragon control logic failed constantly as I was trying to calculate the dot product to achieve direction . Finally I noticed that since the dragon has a head only one side (should have been mopre obvious before) , I noticed that mathematically I had to calculate the dot product between two Rays, and finally got it done.
6] Had to create cleaner scripts just to counter the effect of adding too many objects (The dragon destroying the building caused tooo much overhead)

This is the status of the project:

STORY (Gabby)
Pick a Name (Oct 31)
Write dialogue, menu news blurbs, and other in game written material
Create survey for play testers


MECHANICS (Harish)
Create and design final dungeon map
Work movement and actions of the main character (stealth, run, walk, pick up, smash, use gun, talk)
Work movement and actions of the monster (navigation, sound and light sensors/threshold, sight)
Make and implement all game over conditions (monster hits, large rubble hits, fall in water, time limit)


INTERFACE (Gaurav)
Work use cell phone animation and menu (make sure to add battery and light sensors)
Decide on final player controls/buttons


SOUND (Gaurav)
Implement 3D sound
Assign all sound effects to in game objects
Create general background track 


AESTHETICS  (Harish)

Make sure sense of scale is correct
Add complex/interesting textures


PLAYTESTING  (Gabby, Gaurav)
Test the game ourselves to find glitches and game errors
Test the game with others to  assess fun/challenge


MARKETING (Gabby)
Finish first poster (Oct 31)

Thursday, November 6, 2014

Homework 14 / Indirect Control

Constraints:
Constrains are in terms of navigating through the city. There are a limited number of possible solutions (Though the player can choose any) to escape from the city. To make it slightly easier, the player has access to a visual static map which has an image of the city before the destruction (which might be misleading as stuff has changed)

Goals:
The main goal is to escape before the rescue team leaves. The shortest route to reach them might have surprises and sometimes not the best choice. The longer routes are well long and carry a higher risk of the dragon catching up. So the player has to use his best judgment and choose an option which might help him achieve the goals

Interface:
The player is a an average human in the real world and has access to no HUD interface. There are fixed keys to do some actions, but there is no interface as such. The player has vision in the form of mouse motion providing him an first person view of the world.

Visual Design:
The game provides a sense of direction and path using roads and buildings. Paths generally look the same and the player will get lost very quickly unless they navigate in a systematic manner using the map. They also have to look around and try to perceive the design to gather more information about their position and use the map to their advantage.

Characters:
We'll try to get NPC's into the game so that the player could have interactions with them. For now we are focused on just getting everything working on the main map and main game play.


Music:
 Music and Sounds are supposed to be important components as they are supposed to create a spooky and eerie environment with a sense of fear. There will be sounds from the dragon, the buildings will break down using different sounds and there are sounds showing the players status (running/out of breath) etc.


Contribution towards the game:
Scripts:
    for controlling the player.
    for scoring system.
    for Euclidean distance for path navigation of the dragon.
    for destroying buildings
    for water effects

Models:
   World Map
    9 different Buildings
    Road Designs
    90 different textures for buildings (Creating the illusion of 90 buildings using just 9 models)
  

Homework 13 / Game Document

Since it was a team document and not an individual post, Here's the link for the document of the team member:
http://greatdesignogames.blogspot.com/2014/11/hw-13-game-doc.html

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Homework 12/ team tasks


STORY (Gabby)
Pick a Name (Oct 31)
Write dialogue, menu news blurbs, and other in game written material
Create survey for play testers


MECHANICS (Harish)
Create and design final dungeon map
Work movement and actions of the main character (stealth, run, walk, pick up, smash, use gun, talk)
Work movement and actions of the monster (navigation, sound and light sensors/threshold, sight)
Make and implement all game over conditions (monster hits, large rubble hits, fall in water, time limit)


INTERFACE (Gaurav)
Work use cell phone animation and menu (make sure to add battery and light sensors)
Decide on final player controls/buttons


SOUND (Gaurav)
Implement 3D sound
Assign all sound effects to in game objects
Create general background track 


AESTHETICS  (Harish,Gabby)

Make sure sense of scale is correct
Add complex/interesting textures


PLAYTESTING  (Gabby, Gaurav)
Test the game ourselves to find glitches and game errors
Test the game with others to  assess fun/challenge


MARKETING (Gabby)
Finish first poster (Oct 31)

Hoping to Finish everything by 21st November

Homework 11/ Interfaces

1) Describe the user interface in your game

It's a First Person RPG with mouse control for rotation and keyboard controls for translation. The player can move forward/backward/left and right using W/S/A & D respectively. He also gains ability to see 2Pi radians in all the 3 axis. There are also special keys binded (not selected yet) which will be used for interactions with the game environment.

2) What role will the interface play in your game

Ability to navigate and outrun the dragon. The entire concept of the game is to think and move.

3) Intuitive interfaces give a feeling of control. How easy (or hard) is your interface to master?

Its pretty easy to learn the interface controls, but it will take some amount of skill and mastery to use it perfectly for the game.

4) Will your players have a strong influence over the outcome of the game? Please describe? If not, how can you change this?

Yes there is a strong influence in the sense that the player is trying to survive the map. Other than that, the player has no control on the environment and the resultant conditions of his/her actions.

5) Players like to feel powerful. Do the players of your game feel powerful? How could this be improved?

The game is exactly the opposite, where the player is supposed to be weak and have no power whats over. The game is a test of focus in extremely stressful situations

6) What does the player pick up and touch?

The player interacts with NPC's using the left mouse click (which is equivalent to touching) . The same key is used for picking up Miniquest items

7) Does the interface map to actions in the world? How?

Yes, the actions of the player have severe impacts on determining whether the player survives or nor.

8) How does your interface let the player see, hear and touch the world of the game? Could this be improved in order to make the game world more real to the player's imagination?

Yes the player is able to see, hear and touch the world but only in specific formats. To improve imaginations, we would need force feedback and 3d sound devices.

9) The idea interface is invisible to the player. Does your interface cater to the players desires? 

What are these desires?
The player is restricted to 2D motion but has 3D sight. The interface is supposed to be slick instead of a menu based game.

10) Can your interface be used without the players thinking? Is it natural?
Yes, the interface is just bare bones, with the traditional FPRPG motion and a few more buttons. The game is more focused towards strategies and deciding quickly

11) Assuming you can do what you want, how would you make your interface more natural?

The player would use a 3d viewer and his physical motion would be mapped to the game. Would be a great exercise routine if the player is standing on the treadmill lol

12) What kind of feedback does your interface present to the player? What do the players want to know? How does the interface relate to the player's goal? Will it help achieve that goal?
The major feedback is sound as the player has to keep his ears open for both clues and danger. Most of the game is in extreme dark , so resource management is also important. There is also a limited time scope, (with the time either displayed via his mobile), which ensures that the player has to keep pushing forward.

13) Is the interface feedback continuous? Why or why not?

The feedback is continuous for flashlight, whereas discontinuous for the time limit and running speed limit. So both the flavors are available.

14) Please describe the concept of interface modes? Does your game have multiple modes? Please explain (Lens #60).

Interface modes in simple terms would be mapping game actions to a different set of controls explicitly. This provides the player the ability to change stuff to cater to his/her needs.
Our game does not provide multiple modes, as this might make the mapping tough (Though it is still possible)

Thursday, October 9, 2014

Homework 10/ Scores





Link: https://www.dropbox.com/s/rfvxw187t19lqn3/HW8.blend?dl=0

Images :






The project is to make a menu for the game. Since the game is about horror survival, I have tried to give the Menu a scary background ( the background is of a cracked floor signifying the beast's impact). Both the "Play" and "Exit" buttons are animated and the game scene is activated when the Play button is clicked on.

Contributions this week :

Still working on the map, I will be doing this at least for the next few weeks. I currently am designing a 2d figure before translating it to blender.

Homweork 9 / Balance

1) Fairness

The game tries to balance out the fairness between the player who is trying to survive and the monster which is trying to kill the player. The monster can rip through buildings and make a new path for itself anytime, which the player cannot. The player on the other hand has a map and (smartness of a human) to help him navigate the paths. The dragon can breathe fire and kill the player as soon as it see's him, but the player can hide behind almost infinite amount of objects and avoid the dragon. The player is small and quick, whereas the dragon is huge with erratic movement. So the fairness aspect is dependent on how smart the human is who is controlling the player. We are trying to create a fair game for a very good player and not for newbies.

2) Challenge vs. Success

The challenge is to survive, the success is surviving the map. The game's difficulty is formulated depending on how the player approaches the game. Aggressiveness is met with a very aggressive dragon, but a very slow approach would cause the player loose time.
So the player's success measure could be the amount of time it too him, for example who completes it faster. The amount of battery used could also show the player's skill, as not using map's and lights is a tricky challenge.

3) Meaningful Choices

The player has different choices where he can select the specific path and has corresponding repercussions. The player has to choose his paths smartly as that determines whether he can finish the game or not. The player also has to smartly use his resources such as battery and stamina to make sure that he has resources left at the end.

4) Triangularity

Triangularity is maintained by how the player uses his resources. The way he uses the resources always determines how the game turns out in the future.

5) Skill vs. Chance

The game is more about skill than chance, as the player. The player has to have very good navigational skills and a sense of direction (when the battery runs off). There are a few elements of chance though as how he interacts with the NPC's and the result of these interactions (which can be crazy)

6) Head vs. Hands

The game is more focused towards Head than hands. Moving skills are only useful when the protagonist is extremely close.

7) Competition vs. Cooperation

The game is a serious competition and has very few elements of cooperation. Competition is between the player and the protagonist which is chasing him.

8) Short vs. Long

The game is logically long as the player has to traverse through a network of routes. The game is still limited by a time limit, as the rescue party leaves at a fixed time forcing the player to run through the game. If the game were a real production game, it will be about 3 hours long

9) Reward

The only reward is surviving. There are a few miniquest rewards where the player might end up receiving a flashlight, extra batteries or a gun.

10) Punishment

Punishments are severe, if a miniquest goes foul, then the player loses the chance of receiving the resource as well as penalties such as bridges blown off, sound penalty etc.

11) Freedom vs Control

The player is free to move wherever he wants to. But the maps are littered with debris and blocked paths which create a paradigm of control over the player

12) Simple vs. Complex

The game is simple for understanding. The only goal is to reach the rescue party and the only way to do it is run to them. The Complexity is created by constant navigation and the heart wrenching sounds. The player has to stay focused towards his goals, as getting lost would end his chances of survival.

13) Detail vs. Imagination
The game is completely focused towards imagination. Details hardly matter as most of the game is in dark and the player is unable to see anything. The game is still well detailed, but the player would never see anything. Detail is very high when we look for sound, as this is the major factor which influences the player.