Sunday, March 30, 2014

Sunday Dev diary. - Demo at the gates

Hello everyone, its sunday evening again, and that means its time for an update on whats going on, what went bad, what went good, who what with whom, you know, the usual stuff.

Unfortunately this week i was quite busy both at work and in real life so not much was done on the Awaken, just an hour of work every day just when i woke up during first two cigaretes of the day. However i finaly managed to start working on background of first level. You can see the result on screens around, its not great, but everything better than abstract something i ve been using in previevous versions of the game. However there are several layers of smoke srolling in parallax and everything looks lovely when in motion. Background tiles took good couple of hours to make, but in the end it was worth the effort as i can add more variety later and reuse some of the objects for next levels.
Screen effects were added during this week as well, on the pictures around you can see blue haze combined with "line" effect. Im still not sure about the second mentioned, but i think it adds a bit of arcade machine atmosphere. However i ll probably implement option to turn it off.
More optimalization of the game was done as well. Used to compress all the huge background files so now the flash version of Awaken is again in play. Did some tweaking with explosion system and improved the performance even further so now the game almost always sits on its maximum 60FPS.

And here we are at the point of this post, the DEMO is comming, and hopefuly its comming soon! I dont want to make any promisses, but all "components" of the game, except dock&shop part, are past the prototype stage and the gameplay feels ready for publishing first bit. When the demo is comming then? Dont want to say obvious "when done", but i think it should be ready within two weeks. It would be possible to make it next weekend, but i still have many things to decide before i ll set them in to stone by releasing demo.
Like the soundtrack, there are many great artists on the internet who offer their work to use in other projects both for free, or for money and im in big dillema in here. Obviously there is free stuff around whitch is great, but there is even more stuff whitch is better but costs a lot of money to purchase so i have to decide how much i want to invest in to the game, and how much i can expect to get back from pregame add.
Next important thing that needs my attention before demo release is the sound. This part ll be delicate and i want to be sure every last click ll feel right as in my opinion the sound is even more important than graphics, and while Awaken does not exactly shine in that aspect i want at least sounds feelin right.
And that would be it for today! Again, thanks for reading and see you next week!

Sunday, March 23, 2014

Sunday Dev diary. - spawn system, explosions, new alien craft

Hello everyone, im here with sunday update of whats done on Awaken. Not much to show visualy, but theres a lot of work done this weekend.

First and most important addition to the game is new enemy spawn system and new camera handling as previevous ones were made just for quick testing purposes and game evolved in to stage when i want to start preparations for demo release. Alien ships can now enter screen from all directions appearing smoothly from behind edge of screen, not just appearing on the side from nowhere. That allows me to make surprising and more dynamic entries then just "fall in from above". This upgrade was a must have one as was quite standart that enemies are flying on to the sceen from multiple directions 15 years ago allready.
Along with it i have to rework all enemy movement scripts, but in the end i was able to made them more simple and they can be easily modified unlike previevous ones.

Now the "eye candy" improvements, first i reworked explosions(again) and now its even more enjoyable to shoot down enemies than before and unlike previevous version they have almost zero impact on game preformance whitch is great and it ll alow me to let player slaughter even more aliens at once in the future.
One of new alien crafts is the probe, i confess its inspired by the matrix drones if anyone recognize and it can be seen on the screen with explosion. Tentacles animation gave me a hard time but in the end im really happy with the ressult and hope players ll appreciate them as well.Probe is weak, it comes to the screen, shoot few shoots aimed at player and "swims" away.
Second new alien ship is the interceptor(can be seen in the header), its twice as tough than the probe however it does not shoot in the direction of player, just front, and rear directions. To balance interceptor inability to aim at the player its firepower is admirable and can quickly ruin players submarine if he does not get out of its firing sector fast.

Thats all for today! Thanks for reading and see you latest next sunday with another dev. diary entry ;-)

Saturday, March 22, 2014

Dev. Diary - Awaken

I always loved old shmup games, it all began by 1942 arcade, followed by Raptor on my 386 laptop i got in exchange for tape recorder when on secondary school, continued by Tyrian and since then? Yes, there was a lot of great shmups since then, but i always missed somethink. I love/hate two things on shoot em up games. I hate when you could be shoot down by one bullet.  And i love purchasing upgrades for my ship between the missions. And most of shmup games just dont fit in to my simple requirements. Tyrian was the last one i know and enjoyed.Sure there was ton of good games in the genere since then, but i just did not fell in love with them becouse of one of the reasons i stated above.
And here i come with announcement of AWAKEN an underwater bullet hell shmup or underwater maniac shooter if you want. And while about 10% of the game is allready finished i prepared little teaser for you. Sit back, enjoy and more updates about the game ll come soon.

First step in to nowhere

First game in a decade i made and it was not badass action shooter, not old school rpg but childish game where u play bird trying to collect nectar. What!? Lets start over and let me explain how it all began.
I allready knew i want to make a game, but still i ve been looking for platform to build on. As i have some, but very little coding skills starting game from scratch was not possible, so i started looking how the game making software evolved since my last check about five years ago. And it certainly evolved as some of my favourite games like Hotline Miami are made in game game maker and made a tons of cash, so i was surprised it is viable way to go right now.

I was really surprised by the ammount of choices around and obvious selection would be Unity 3d, but..its a great tool no doubt about that, i read few tutorials, understood the code, but i have bad experience with teaming up and want to do this alone forever and if i would have to code, make graphics, make sounds, think about story......basicaly, do everything by myslef i would be overwhelmed, i would never finish anything, and i would be pissed off whole time since the start till finish.

And then i found Stencyl, something even simplier than well known game maker, but i liked the interface, exporting game as flash was great for me as i dont have big plans anyway, and it was easy enought to start right now with it.

After completing first tutorial i was thinking what game i would make and after many crazy ideas the woman i live with came with simple idea. "make a game about colibri collecting nectar, i would play that". I said, hmm, ok and tought it will be simple enought for first piece, ppl like birds, i like birds, lets do it.
After couple of weeks it was done, i kind of regret i rushed it in the end as i belevie it could be a nice game for kids if i would add story mode i was plannig, polish gameplay and add tutorial, but its a first game right?
You can try the game HERE if you dare, dont expect much as it was meant as game for kids. 
Let me know what do you think, i know its an half-finished crap, but still, let me know;-)

Hello world!

Hello everyone! I think it would be polite to introduce my self before anything else. Im 30 yrs old dude from mid europe with passion for gaming whos been trying to make games since age of 10. I started my first projects on Atari 800XE when kids around me at elementary school started getting their first PCs and been chatting about how far they made it in wolfenstein 3d and as my parrents did not want to spoil me by purchasing me everythink i want, i knew i ll be stuck with my Atari probably forever and only chance was to earn money for my first PC by my self(well it took more than half decade in the end;-))whitch was impossible couse 1942 and Ninja Spirit arcade machines just on the way from school to home;-)Then the only solution to this situation was to make the games i would like to play by myself.

With one other school mate of mine we started working on various projects, never finishing any, but few of them made it to the "demo" stage. Reason for that was we always set our goals to high and when we had just the core of the game we always hit the 64kb memory limit of our Atari. Now, yeas ago it sound funny as now i know we could have done most of things much more memory effectively but it for nothing else it was great fun and first programing experience.
Six years later i finaly got my first PC, i had to sell inline skates and kimono, help there and there, beg for envelopes with money instead of usual birthday presents for 15yrs old boy and then finaly, with great financial support of my mum my dream has become reality, i spent about 1500usd(using current exchange rate)to get my first PC - Intel pentium 120 with 32mb of ram;-)

Couple of weeks after purchase i started learning programing in pascal, but when i allready had computer capable of running games i always wanted to play i lost my motivation to create somethink by my self. And with many temptations around me like first beers, first rum shots, desire to touch boobs for the first time and Dungeon Master 2 floppy disks on my desk...well, my programing "career" ended just there.Replaced by gaming, later gaming got replaced by electric guitar, and just couple of year ago guitar was replaced by warhammer models.

Now, more than half of my current lifetime later i decided to resume my passion for creating games and finaly make the game i always wanted to play.