Pro-crastinate.

The weeks have not been pleasant with the recent attending of my social circles with the collaboration of my work.  Thus creating a super-duper tight schedule of things being done such as level concepts, character design and items.  With the design freeze coming in it’s hard to tell whether or not all of the things intended will really make it through -.-

However I am hopeful that it will all be resolved soon.  Now the game has established at 3 levels with each one more complicated than the other, since the basic element of the game is after all a puzzle.  There have been considerations in level design as having it too easy or too difficult will make it hard both on the programmer’s end and the design end.  But I believe we reached a balance on the puzzle that is being put in each stage.  So we’d expect it to be done in due time.  Hopefully when the modeling comes around the corner we would be able to create enough objects to fill the space.

As for the late blog post, I have finally gathered enough time to just pull through one.

Good luck to all you other designers out there.  🙂

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Back on square 1 it seems

So after the first week of game dev’ing, our group Got Rice? has established an agreement on the strategy puzzle genre.  It was meant to be somewhat of a “set it and forget it” game where the player finds a bunch of tools within a confined space and make traps to defeat enemies that come.  Much of the plan came together nicely with the addition of several stage ideas and diagrams. 

Much of the game’s interactive options will work like any other first person shooter where the player will have hold of a weapon and uses it to knock and whack his/her way to the next level.  With that being said, the game’s target was mainly to be sort of a problem solving with a bit or horror element in it, since after all, the premise of the game was about a guy stuck in a haunted factory.  Initially the problem was that we considered all the available ways of clearing the stage but then including them would mean vasts amount of programming and modeling which could be out of our time limit reach.  It would even seem more unlikely with our additional courses.  So then the idea of having an ALL-interactive stage was scrapped.  Now it will only be somewhat interactive with most of the skill element dependent on the player’s skill in placing the traps.

However, some conflict arose and now that we’re left with the situation where 1 of our designers left, and our new designer has taken hold of a new concept.  So it seems that we would require some planning and paper scribbling once again to make sure that everything is within doable range.  But here’s to hope that we don’t start too late. D:

Blog Revival

Seems like a good time to run the blog again now that I don’t have much to do, but rather than just gaming, I think I will include some of my fictional works in progress and other daily events.

Design Entry #3

Working towards the 3rd milestone due for our game project.  A good number of our game mechanics have been implemented to the actual game.  These include the weapons systems that allows the vehicles to automatically shoot when it is in proximity of other vehicles, and an implementation of the ‘tails’ of the vehicles to simulate the speed.

Several sound effects have been made for the game that includes several collision sounds and menu screen sounds.  The game also now has particle effects used for explosions, item effects, and cosmetic purposes.

The main goal now is to really stick all of these elements together, models have been getting worked on and some internal dialogue graphics of the characters are in the works.  The main goal right now is to have the shaders and lighting done correctly to really go for what we have promoted in the first place.  Lastly we must be sure to push for finishing the main skeleton of the game before the next milestone so that we may consider adding extra features.

A cycle of continuous withdrawal and addiction

So there, I’ve finally done it again, another year have gone by and I am thrown back into the well again.  What do I mean by that?  Well, it really much means that I can only see one part of the world, and think that this is the only world that I will live in and live with.  But all the philosophy aside, I am talking about my on and off again relationship with World of Warcraft.  After 6 years of this game even I wonder to myself sometimes how I can go back to it, but how can I not when people around me constantly tempt me?  When my brother constantly insist that the game is “different”, much like how people say each version of the iPhone is different.

All the login screens of the expansions

Growing up with WoW since my high school days, I’ve always never realized everyone’s motivation in playing it, and after the recent lecture about people the things people do to achieve and obtain a virtual character, it just struck me again.

Character selection screen

I think it really comes down to what are the qualities of a good online RPG, but I think if we are to list all of them we can go all day.  Because let’s be honest, one can only fit so many things into a game, and the reason behind the successes of many games are hugely due to their execution and their appeal to the need of modern gamers.  On the topic of WoW, their execution methods are practically ever-changing, so much to the point that it doesn’t even feel like I am playing the same game I did a year ago anymore.  Quest interactions, quirky references to movies and other games make the game stand amongst so many other old-school RPG’s out there.  Such techniques really separate you from being you and REALLY into someone else at times.  Because honestly, who would want to level a character from 1-85 being the same person?  I mean sure you get stronger, but at the end of it all you are just…you.  But what makes it different in WoW is that while you are forced to follow that law, it attempts to throw you into the role of an actual hero of a nation, an actual achiever of the race, and not just a high-leveled fighter in the community.

Players waiting for a once only world event - opening of the gate to a new raid dungeon

I think on that fact alone, it is how the game still gets users to pay 15 dollars a month, and certainly, it is worth every penny to the people who appreciates it.  Comparing to the initial beta and “vanilla” versions of the game, that 15 dollars would only grow in value.  Sure there are expansions you have to buy to keep up with the content, but if you are to spend so and so amount of money every year on games  that run the same way every time you turn it on, why not take a leap of faith and see where 15 dollars a month can take you?

I guess despite all that, it may seem unfair that I don’t even talk about what the game has to offer, and to be quite honest, I myself am not sure how much more the game has to offer.  You want dungeons?  You have them.  You want shiny armor and weapons? You certainly have over 10 million of them.  You want to adventure?  You can do so with up to 40 or so friends.  Or maybe you just want to run around town, dance around and party?  You can too with all the right clothing.  The point is, it is unfair to brand a game to be not fun or not entertaining based on whether certain things YOU like exist in it or not, it really is how many people it appeals to with the amount of things it has.  Certainly if something about it captures the audience, that in itself is a fun factor of its own.  Now am I saying that there are no flaws in games then?  Certainly not, WoW definitely has its flaws, but then again flaws are all subjective to each person like how qualities are subjective to each person.

But all of this comes back to why I am even talking about this game…the technicalities behind it or whatnot.  Then at this point, you can already conclude that the game REALLY is essentially just a click, auto-attack till death type of RPG.  But really, you can only do so much with a mouse and a keyboard.  As for things that make it stand out amongst other games in terms of gameplay and controls is that you are never really done the game.  What I mean is that the game does not END at the game but goes on in other mediums, for they be other games, books, movies, shows, or comics.  It even goes to the point that “playing WoW” is no longer playing a game, but its…a way of life…a feeling.

So there’s my rant and thoughts on WoW…do I actually like the game?  Not really.  But can i quit playing it?  Definitely not.

Design entry #2

After the recent meeting with the group at the workshop, we were able to flesh out the basic designs of the vehicles and cars used for the actual game.  Moreover from the programming side, Patrick and Winson seemed to have accomplished quite a bit as well with the completion of the basic physics and the particle systems.  The basic system also includes the car’s hit points and speed.  Now my part is to really define the textures of each car and level as we plan to use several particle effects for the lighting to suit the theme of the game.  Also we will be hoping to implement suitable sound and music to fit the game.

I think there’s also a need for us to integrate all of this information into our game doc that all of us seem to be neglecting in a way.  At the moment it does seem possible to put it together in time, but there’s always room for more implementations.  If the time allows we can add more lighting effects that we plan on using in the first place to enhance the graphics a bit more, but for now I think our main focus is still putting everything together.

As for the GUI, a recent rendition of our game title has been complete by our graphics person Tuo, and personally I found it to be very nice and fitting, hope that inspiration for the perfect GUI screen comes any time soon…Because I desperately need some input on that matter.

Design Entry #1

I think I was rather late on my mark to start a design entry after 2-3 weeks in.  But rather than saying that there is much to work on, it’s more of a matter of what direction everything goes at this point.  Since members from my previous team dropped out due to unforeseen circumstances, we merged with another team in order to fill our remaining position.  Even now then with a group of 7 members our workload seemed to have reduced for certain aspects of the game, but it doesn’t seem like we get much slack because our merge meant that we have to put together a new game.

Although that sounds like a lot to do, it’s not entirely so when all the physics are intact from our previous games, and I think for the most part it’s just the redesigning to fit the new game theme and the new concepts for the GDW requirements.  It’s not so much that I hate to do this but I guess thinking of a vehicle for a game that involves ‘speeding through a data highway’ isn’t my forte at the moment.

However, we do have the game’s basic look and premise in mind, and with me tasked with part of the graphics I think my main goal right now is to figure out the models and textures out, so more and more concepts it is.


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