Defining Awesome — 2010 — July
  • Status Updates

  • Posts from July 2010

    July 30th 2010

    I added realistic aiming including recoil, aim lag to simulate gun heaviness and all sorts of wobbly effects that affect the aim during movement. The result is fantastic, combat is MUCH more interesting. I’m adding more weapon variables today.

    July 29th 2010

    Current gameplay thoughts

    I fixed bots yesterday cause they weren’t working with the new stuff like ladders and different angled slopes. They still don’t work fully but I got a chance to play a bit on the new map. I have some mixed feelings right now. I shouldn’t write about it but maybe my thoughts will clear out in the process of writing.

    This is about the deathmatch/teammatch gameplay not about the RTS idea. Long story short: I’m not making the RTS idea since when working with Victor we got better ideas. I haven’t done anything in the RTS direction so it was just something I wrote on my blog. I still think it would be cool but as I said I have better ideas. So Link-Dead currently is heading in the normal player-controlled driven game. A couple points:

    – The 2.5d aim point shooting which I described a couple posts earlier is removed. It feels weird, that’s all. I thought it would introduce a new challenge but there are countless other challenges which the player must face in this game. Aiming should be straightforward.

    – Encounters with enemies are very systematic. Meaning, they are like a process which steps can be predicted. For example:

    Player meets Enemy. Both are under cover. If they have equal weapons and health – none attack. They either use grenade or wait for team member to help. If any of the players feels more skilled then they might attack but winning in a situation like this is more of a game of chance.

    In a situation were players are not equal in equipment or health, or one is behind cover and the other is not of course the situation is easy and the outcome predictable.

    It’s like a chess game – a decision game. Mainly because you can’t dodge bullets due to slow movement. Your only defense is your mind – you must predict situations; assess your dangers, surroundings, enemies and make decisions instead of going Rambo and spraying bullets. Aiming skills for winning are needed like 10% in Link-Dead now. This is not bad per se because this is exactly as I have designed it and thought it out in my head. I am proud to have achieved this.

    My mixed feelings come from knowing that if I would make it more like Soldat were movement isn’t so restricted it would be instantly more fun.

    So why not do it like this? Because I get more hooked on games that are not jump ‘n shoot. I will have a lot of fun in 15 minutes in Quake 3 but I won’t play it for weeks. Whereas Day of Defeat takes longer to have fun but I will be hooked for weeks and I know a lot of mature players are like this too. The fun is more mellowed and spanned on a wider range but with a couple moments that are immensely satisfying.

    These mixed feelings also come from the fact that the game mechanics aren’t fully developed yet. Right now it is still a mix of the arcade and tactical approach. Aiming doesn’t have any recoil, bink or nothing. It’s just point and shoot. Introducing more variables to the tactical gameplay will bring more choices. Stuff like different weapons (not only guns but bombs, mines, traps) and attachments, more weapon variables, injuries, medkits etc. Finally I was thinking of going totally to the realistic/tactical side and introduce RPG elements: soldiers would have skill points like marksmanship, agility, speed, health, strength, luck(?). This would bring down monkey-gameplay down to near 0 (aiming would be like 0.1% of the game since whether you kill an enemy or not would be decided mostly by all of the variables and the decisions you made before actually pulling the trigger).

    A lot to think about. It would be really easy to make another Soldat at this point and it would be great but I really want to make something better. I want to make a game that isn’t on the market yet. What I described is a game that does not exist that’s why the idea excites me. I just have fears that it will be too difficult, that players are more acustomed to arcade games and that’s all they want; or that I myself won’t even like it! I don’t know since I never played a game like this before.

    In situations like these I always recall how much doubts I had when making Soldat. This is what happens when there is nothing to copy from – you are stepping into unknown territory. I really thought Soldat would be boring and pointless cause all you would do is run at each other and shoot. Well that’s what you do finally but people seem to love that simplicity. I hope my doubts with Link-Dead are of the same caliber. I really need to release the alpha as fast as possible and play with real people.

    Discussion is very much appreciated.

    July 28th 2010

    Finally got some time and made a HUD and respawn menu. Now it looks like a proper game.

    July 27th 2010

    Much to write about after the Game Developers Conference but right now I’d rather go back to work. Smoothened jumping animations and behaviour; it was bothering me since the test version.

    July 15th 2010

    Link-Dead blood & gore preview

    I will be gone for the next week. I’ll be on the conference but also on a little vacation. So not to leave you empty I present you the
    first preview of the gore & blood system in Link-Dead. Dudes don’t just die in this game they will die slowly in agony trying to desperately save themselves from their brutal agressor. And yes, that is one of the sprites Victor made.

    July 13th 2010

    I’m preparing for the Games Developers Conference in Gdansk. I will have a lot of never seen before Link-Dead footage. For sure the event will be filmed. Hopefully I will be able to show it online some time after.

    July 9th 2010

    Felt really tired, demotivated and pressured today by the massive work I still have to do in Link-Dead. But then I made some fantastic looking explosions and Odin blessed me with an awesome game idea about making respawn points an integral part of the gameplay and I feel a lot better.

    July 8th 2010

    – made parts of netcode 3 times faster, still it suffers from performance issues, gotta work more on it
    – tried running game without video driver initialized for dedicated server – works!
    – got tired of netcode and made game intro
    – experimented with dust procesor to make different explosions
    – bullet projectiles are awesome! what was I thinking with hitscan weapons?

    July 6th 2010

    Playing LD with bots on a new map shows me how much this game is different than Soldat and how much I need to change. I think the most important thing is the characters are much larger. This brings a difficulty in aiming because you can’t get such a good feel for were the bullets are travelling from. The weapon changes positions all the time, the player is not a dot like in Soldat. The Soldat-style camera doesn’t help here either. Fixing the camera on the player gives nice results. It feels more as if I am the player, all the bumps and movements are seen with the camera shaking. The gostek is always on the center of the screen. These things give a much greater sense of how the bullet will travel once shot.
    Also: hitscan bullets suck. I’m switching them to physics based projectiles.

    July 5th 2010

    Aim point fire variation

    Here is a slightly different more traditional approach.

    If you have a good idea that doesn’t involve hit chances please post, I am very interested.