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|-+ kmiller's entry: Laser Maze (done, updated)

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Read July 10, 2008, 12:17:52 PM #0
kdmiller3

kmiller's entry: Laser Maze (done, updated)

I don't have a clear vision or clever title for this one, so I'll just have to make something up as I go.  I do have working beam weapons now, both instantaneous pulse and extended duration, so that's a start.
« Last Edit: July 22, 2008, 01:35:00 AM by kdmiller3 »
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Read July 17, 2008, 01:39:44 PM #1
kdmiller3

Re: kmiller's entry

I got beam weapons working early last week and equipped the player ship and "multiple"-type options with them as a test.  While the player's ship could fire projectiles based on a literal reading of the session theme, I figured it would be more appropriate for the player ship to fire beams as well.

After a week of zero progress resulting from lack of inspiration and a long drive side-trip to visit relatives, I finally created a beam-attack enemy inspired by the Laser Ship enemy from GORF.  With only minor embellishments, it looks almost exactly like the original.  I had to change its attack cycle to make it fair for the player, as the original beam moved fairly slowly while this version hits instantaneously.  It emits a "tracer beam" for several seconds before firing to give the player a chance to evade the attack or shoot down the Laser Ship, and then fires a high-powered blast capable of destroying the player ship in a single shot.  (I may replace this with a series of pulses.)

I still don't have a good level design yet, as I just threw the Laser Ships in with everything else.  They fit right in, though, and they're mean little bastards.   Grin
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Read July 18, 2008, 02:00:41 PM #2
kdmiller3

Re: kmiller's entry

After adding a Tilemap component, I was able to build an interesting arena based on the "complex maze" from Combat for the Atari 2600 with little effort.  The indestructible walls provide cover from enemy laser fire, though AI units look fairly dumb right now because they don't know that the walls are even there.  I knew that was coming, though, and it's not an insurmountable problem.
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Read July 21, 2008, 08:18:31 PM #3
kdmiller3

Re: kmiller's entry

I guess I'll call this done for now.  I might update it if I have time before the session ends, but this is what I have.

You'll need to install the Microsoft Visual C++ 2008 Redistributable Package to run it.

...

Defend yourself and the blue pods from attacking ships!

Default controls:
Move - WADS keys
Aim - mouse
Fire - left mouse

Scoring:
Zap Ship - 100 points
Laser Ship - 300 points

Extra life every 10,000 points

Updated! Disabled floating-point exceptions if not running in a debugger; may help with crash.
« Last Edit: July 22, 2008, 01:33:19 AM by kdmiller3 »
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Read July 21, 2008, 09:32:55 PM #4
berilium

Re: kmiller's entry

Looks nice! What are those green dots for? Are you using a sort of physics engine? Looks like the ai is driven by one...  Smiley
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Read July 21, 2008, 09:37:23 PM #5
the2bears

Re: kmiller's entry: Laser Maze (done-ish)

Hmmm... Sad
Code:
Problem signature:
  Problem Event Name: APPCRASH
  Application Name: Test.exe
  Application Version: 0.0.0.0
  Application Timestamp: 4884f5a5
  Fault Module Name: atioglxx.dll
  Fault Module Version: 6.14.10.6465
  Fault Module Timestamp: 45f8a27d
  Exception Code: c000008e
  Exception Offset: 000ea316
  OS Version: 6.0.6000.2.0.0.768.3
  Locale ID: 1033
  Additional Information 1: 4ccc
  Additional Information 2: 0de0f5e0b412e82a7d7bf719cab4a822
  Additional Information 3: 63ed
  Additional Information 4: 15cd1cd3ec5ebabe1963951977d8c7b1


the2bears - the indie shmup blog
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Read July 21, 2008, 10:31:31 PM #6
kdmiller3

Re: kmiller's entry: Laser Maze (done-ish)

To Beryllium:
The green dots with white "+" are health pick-ups.  I'm using Box2D for collision detection and dynamics, and it works great even though my usage patterns are somewhat abnormal.

To the2bears:
I'm still not sure why you're getting that OpenGL division-by-zero (c000008e) error.  I recall you having the same problem with "Galaga Has A Posse", which used an earlier version of the same application.  I do have floating-point exceptions enabled to catch division by zero and invalid operation, so it's possible that it's triggering problems on your system.
« Last Edit: July 21, 2008, 11:52:15 PM by kdmiller3 »
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Read July 22, 2008, 01:37:27 AM #7
kdmiller3

Re: kmiller's entry: Laser Maze (done, updated)

I updated the build to only enable floating-point division by zero and invalid operation exceptions when a debugger is attached.  That may help the C000008E exception, though I have no way of testing it.  Smiley
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Read July 22, 2008, 01:44:44 AM #8
5parrowhawk

Re: kmiller's entry: Laser Maze (done-ish)

First impressions:

I like!

Only caveats:

1. 360 pad does not seem to work properly. It only moves the cursor along the vertical axis, which makes it pretty near impossible to aim. Mouse works fine.
2. When attempting a quick sweep with the laser from 5 o'clock to 7 o'clock, it goes the long way around. Seems you forgot to add or subtract 2*PI somewhere. I had that problem with mine earlier, but eventually fixed it.
3. What exactly do the blue pods do, other than distracting the enemies? Perhaps they should give you very slow health regeneration (per pod with diminishing returns, to prevent the player from being invulnerable at the start), and (to counterbalance) the green powerups should be limited to 1 or 2 that appear infrequently. This would certainly motivate the player to defend them. It does introduce a positive feedback loop, but I think it shouldn't be hard to balance that out.
4. Alternatively you could take a page from "Defender" and, instead of the enemies destroying the blue pods, have fast-moving worker enemies (a third enemy type) that try to capture the blue pods and take them back to their bases, where they turn into laser ships? After all the blue pods are gone, no more worker enemies spawn; laser ships spawn in their place.


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Read July 22, 2008, 02:51:08 AM #9
kdmiller3

Re: kmiller's entry: Laser Maze (done, updated)

1. There's a separate input binding file for Xbox 360 (use "-input input_xbox360.xml" on the command line or "input input_xbox360.xml" at the in-game console).  That should work a lot better.

2. The "flip-around" happens because the aim direction is computed from the center of the screen, not the ship's visible position.  It's a known bug that I need to fix, but doing so will require significant changes to the input system.

3. They were supposed to give bonus points after completing a wave, but the game doesn't support "waves" yet.

4. That's a neat idea, sort of a combination of Rip-Off and Defender/Stargate.
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Read July 22, 2008, 03:11:55 AM #10
the2bears

Re: kmiller's entry: Laser Maze (done-ish)

To the2bears:
I'm still not sure why you're getting that OpenGL division-by-zero (c000008e) error.  I recall you having the same problem with "Galaga Has A Posse", which used an earlier version of the same application.  I do have floating-point exceptions enabled to catch division by zero and invalid operation, so it's possible that it's triggering problems on your system.


Ah right, forgot about that!  I think it might have worked on my other machine, so I'll try that again.

Yes, works on this laptop Smiley  Very nice work.  How to exit?  I ended up killing the process.

Bill
« Last Edit: July 22, 2008, 03:16:31 AM by the2bears »

the2bears - the indie shmup blog
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Read July 22, 2008, 03:18:06 AM #11
kdmiller3

Re: kmiller's entry: Laser Maze (done, updated)

Also try the updated build to see if that helps.
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Read July 22, 2008, 02:40:43 PM #12
kdmiller3

Re: kmiller's entry: Laser Maze (done, updated)

Alt+F4 exits.
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Read July 23, 2008, 12:13:30 AM #13
kdmiller3

Re: kmiller's entry: Laser Maze (done, updated)

I just realized that the short-range beams on the Zap Ships violate the theme description as they don't extend to the first obstacle or the edge of the screen.  Fixing that is a simple data change, though Zap Ships become significantly more dangerous when they can hit from further away.  The game is still fully playable, but you'll be going for the health-ups a lot more often.   Grin

(The attached level.xml file also includes a more prominent Laser Ship beam effect that makes it look as dangerous as it actually is.)
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Read July 23, 2008, 06:47:16 AM #14
kdmiller3

Re: kmiller's entry: Laser Maze (done, updated)

Blargh... I just found out that a mistake in the Player input system prevented negative control values from triggering fire control.  Ordinarily, that's not a big deal, but it broke the Robotron-style fire controls in input_dualstick.xml.  I've attached an updated executable that fixes this, though it uses a newer release of Box2D so I can't guarantee its stability.
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