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Who Needs Direction?
Neil Black
Member #7,867
October 2006
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Quote:

To answer a few questions; no, we should not recycle KQ.

I could hug you.

And to the rest, sounds good, I'm in.

Matt Smith
Member #783
November 2000

Will the main character wear a uniform? Will it look like this or sth less imperial? What's his name? Rank? Serial Number?

596322

Two more stock characters. The Mad Scientist and his Beautiful Daughter

596323596324

alethiophile
Member #9,349
December 2007
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Should the main character be an ordinary soldier, or a special ops type guy? I'm thinking a special ops guy, because that allows you to use cooler weapons with more realism to the story (ie, people in specops tend to have fancy tech-heavy weapons).

--
Do not meddle in the affairs of dragons, for you are crunchy and taste good with ketchup.
C++: An octopus made by nailing extra legs onto a dog.
I am the Lightning-Struck Penguin of Doom.

Matt Smith
Member #783
November 2000

Reliable Grunt #1 and Captain Cockup

http://www.allegro.cc/files/attachment/596325http://www.allegro.cc/files/attachment/596326

alethiophile
Member #9,349
December 2007
avatar

If I get the idea of the game right, then these drawings will be useful mainly for cutscenes, if that. Why not someone make 32x32 tiles of them?

--
Do not meddle in the affairs of dragons, for you are crunchy and taste good with ketchup.
C++: An octopus made by nailing extra legs onto a dog.
I am the Lightning-Struck Penguin of Doom.

Matt Smith
Member #783
November 2000

Nobody should start pixelling until the characters are sorted. These concept pics are easy to churn out. Here's 2 more. Kawaii Servobot and Scary Lady Doctor.

596327596328

Is the 1930s clothing style to everyone's liking?

And here's The Surviving Eyewitness
596329

That makes eight characters in search of a story. It's a posse!! Let's quest!!!!!

No more for now. Battery in tablet worn out.

23yrold3yrold
Member #1,134
March 2001
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The character will be a special-ops type. James Bond, basically. I'm picturing the player running into doors he can't open during the opening scenes with the NPCs, only to start the covert op to the first dungeon by pulling a key card out of his pack which opens all the low level doors and leaves no trace in security. :) The parallels with Bond are mostly in the personality though; very cold and professional, but good at acting warm and "part of the team" around the other staff at the colony. No lasers in pens or shoe-phones, please.

As far as the look of the characters, we can go two ways. I was actually drawing up the main character at work today (still twiddling my thumbs over a male or female character). I'm thinking of uniforms for almost everyone; with a small cast, we can keep enough physical differences that characters remain distinct while looking largely alike (think the Bleach shinigami; they all wear basically the same thing, just different faces, builds, and minor personal effects). On the other hand, we could decide not to play it straight and instead go the route Matt's taking with his characters. I want to hear some votes on that. We don't even have to make them human.

The surviving eyewitness is an interesting idea, depending on if the plot needs him.

Here's a few motivations I'll throw out there for the main bad guy:

1. The main bad guy himself is part of a team within the government developing weapons systems. During a minor war many years ago with an alien race, an alien ship crashed on this planet. Scans showed no survivors. Funding a salvage mission to examine alien warship technology simply could not be justified when ends could barely be met developing technology for colonizing (Earth is kinda getting crowded in the future). So this secret weapons development team pulled political strings to make that planet, years after the crash, a candidate for colonization, as a cover for researching the ship. Someone touched something they shouldn't have and weaponry went boom, which is what destroyed the colony. A member of this black ops research team now heads the smaller colony, and a small crew who are still researching on a much lower scale now, to make sure things go better. This crew, along with the small colony who are pretty much oblivious, are now there under the pretext of investigating the disaster. Player objective: discover the bad guy's motivation and report the true cause of the disaster.

(btw, for some role-reversal fun, if we were to make the player race non-human, the ship in question could be one of ours before they kicked our asses. Yeah, shouldn't have tried to open that photon torpedo with a hammer, noob.)

2. For this one I was a bit inspired by The Martian Chronicles by Ray Bradbury, specifically the "Mars is Heaven" chapter with Captain John Black. Not that what I came up with is actually anything like it. >_> But anyway. This time the original colony (and the smaller, second one) start legit. But there are actually aliens on this planet, undetectable by technology of the time. These aliens are largely psionic by nature, and while they aren't terribly mean, they're invisible, defensive, and they use their psychic nature to talk ... and influence. They "attack" the colony over the course of years by making colony members who have access to dangerous buttons turn traitor, and one night simply make a few strategic individuals take out the whole installation (themselves included). Now the smaller colony is investigating, and a few of the weirder happenings near the end of the colony's life (like coincidental equipment failures) are happening again, much sooner. Someone in this colony is slowly falling under alien control too ... Player objective: discover the source of this "madness" and save the innocent salvage team.

3. The nut in the city plot. I'm sure we can think of lots of ways to do that, hopefully not too cliche. Why would someone deliberately blow up the city? Did he have a self-serving motive? Did space life drive him mad? Was it an accident and now he's scared witless of being caught? Player objective: find the truth and catch Dr. Wily there.

Just throwing out more ideas. If you can't come up with anything on your own at least vote for what you like, or build on what others have come up with. :)

--
Software Development == Church Development
Step 1. Build it.
Step 2. Pray.

Neil Black
Member #7,867
October 2006
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I like one and two, but not three. It's a toss up between the first two, one is cooler but two is creeper, so it really depends on the atmosphere we want to create with this.

bamccaig
Member #7,536
July 2006
avatar

Neil Black said:

I like one and two, but not three. It's a toss up between the first two, one is cooler but two is creeper, so it really depends on the atmosphere we want to create with this.

Seconded.

OnlineCop
Member #7,919
October 2006
avatar

For the second plot, although I don't fully understand it in depth, it sounds reminiscent of the Final Fantasy: Spirits Within movie. Maybe the reason for monsters to attack you would be these spirits or "energy-fields" that morph and warp.

Better yet, maybe even some of the "monsters" aren't sentient at all: they are simply "blobs" of energized plasma ooze that you run into (or that are drawn to your team's energy packs). You get into "battles" with them and need to neutralize them before they drain your pack (which is what pumps air into your space suits).

So the planet would have very little breathable atmosphere, and only some of the "tattered buildings" left remaining have pockets of air that hasn't escaped yet, where you can replenish your air supplies.

I made a VR game!

Matt Smith
Member #783
November 2000

Quote:

decide not to play it straight and instead go the route Matt's taking

Are you suggesting James Bond isn't camp? Star Trek, not camp? All sci-fi becomes camp when you take it off the written page, and fantasy usually starts in the camp of Camp. cough*Legolas*cough

Albin Engström
Member #8,110
December 2006
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Yawn, so how much more are you guys gonna plan before some action gets going?

Don't tell me you're all talk and no show.. ;)

I know I expressed my interest in participating in this but I realize that I have no idea what kind of game you guys have imagined in your heads.. If I was ever considered a part of the team I'd like to be on stand-by untill I know exacly what you guys have planned, what approaches will be taken, game mechanics used, libraries, etc.. anyway, either way I'm playing it so make it a fun game..

Neil Black
Member #7,867
October 2006
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I agree, we need to get something done besides just talking and planning. So what should we start doing? I guess we'll have to wait for our team leader to decide, but we can at least throw out some ideas. A few graphics would be good, and some of the basic code.

Mark Oates
Member #1,146
March 2001
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Quote:

either way I'm playing it so make it a fun game..

:)

well we're getting close to having a doc ready. Phase one is nearing completion.

Matt Smith
Member #783
November 2000

Yeah we haven't even asked the fundamental questions.

  • Allegro 4 or Allegro 5?

  • Hi-res or Lo-res?

  • C or C++?

  • Tilemap engine & map format?

  • Scripting Language?

Seriously, the backstory, plot and gameplay are all things that can wait until the scripting language is chosen. Do you all really think the authors of FF1 thought deeper thoughts than "Wow, I've got him moving in 4 directions" or "Wow, that sprite looks good. Let's give him a name and keep him"?

Quote:

well we're getting close to having a doc ready.

How about a wiki page or two?

alethiophile
Member #9,349
December 2007
avatar

My thoughts:
Allegro 4.
Medium-res. (Honestly, here I just don't care.)
C.
I need more info about this. The only tile-based game I've made is a platformer, so I don't know how it would work with a top-down game.
The only scripting language I've heard of for embedding is Lua. If anyone has any better ideas, I have no trouble.

--
Do not meddle in the affairs of dragons, for you are crunchy and taste good with ketchup.
C++: An octopus made by nailing extra legs onto a dog.
I am the Lightning-Struck Penguin of Doom.

OnlineCop
Member #7,919
October 2006
avatar

Here's my contribution so far:

1struct NPC
2{
3 BITMAP **sprite; // Array of BITMAPs for animated movement
4 
5 int direction_facing; // 0: down, 1: left, 2: up, 3: right
6 
7 int tile_x, tile_y; // which tile (16x16 or 32x32) the NPC is standing on NOW
8 int target_tile_x, target_tile_y; // tile the NPC is wanting to move onto
9 int x, y; // Actual coordinate (used for transitions between tiles, for example)
10 
11 char *script; // used for scripted movements
12 
13 enum MOVE_MODE
14 {
15 NOT_MOVING,
16 RANDOM_WALKING, // choose a direction randomly
17 SCRIPTED_PATH, // this is what uses the "script" char array
18 WALKING_TOWARD_TARGET // given the target_tile_[xy], use pathfinding (like A*) to get there
19 };
20 int movement_type; // uses one of the MOVE_MODE list
21 float pause_between_decisions; // how long to "wait" on a tile before choosing another walking direction
22};

I made a VR game!

Vanneto
Member #8,643
May 2007

I also would like to join this 'little' community project. If there is still room, of course! :)

But...

Woah woah woah. You can't just contribute code like that! First of all, yes, we DO need a good storyline BEFORE anything else. Whats the point in having the code if the story sucks? And even when we got the story, we still need to distribute tasks, agree on how the code will be structured, etc. etc. etc.

So, lets get the story out of the way before doing anything else. Lets not rush it.

Regarding the story:
I also like the 1) and 2) story from 23. I like the 1) one better though.

In capitalist America bank robs you.

OnlineCop
Member #7,919
October 2006
avatar

That's all fine and good, but this "I want a week-long project" has now been running for over a week.

You know, most of the time, game PROGRAMMERS and game DESIGNERS are sitting in different rooms during the game-creation process. The programmers have to start getting the preliminaries ready (map editor, structure for the tiles [rectangular, hex, diamond] to render correctly onto the screen) while the designers are actually coming up with "okay, so it's going to be a space-aged RPG with live battles; what should it be ABOUT?"

So we have enough NOW to actually start on the basics: get the allegro timing right, get the main loop set up and working (logic, inputs, drawing to screen).

If we know there will be NPCs, then we can always get those in the works just so they're ready to be used (and altered, naturally) when the game is hammered down more.

This group on a.cc isn't comprised of ONLY programmers. There are some creative thinkers and everything, so let's start designating jobs: "You, grunt #1! You make the game fun. You, grunt #2! You make the game playable. You, grunt #3! Set up a Paypal donations page so we can get some moneys for caffeine."

I made a VR game!

bamccaig
Member #7,536
July 2006
avatar

Vanneto said:

Woah woah woah. You can't just contribute code like that! First of all, yes, we DO need a good storyline BEFORE anything else. Whats the point in having the code if the story sucks? And even when we got the story, we still need to distribute tasks, agree on how the code will be structured, etc. etc. etc.

Seconded.

OnlineCop said:

So we have enough NOW to actually start on the basics: get the allegro timing right, get the main loop set up and working (logic, inputs, drawing to screen).

The point is there are many ways to do all this stuff. It's not good enough for somebody to write it their way and hand it over to us. We need to decide upon how its going to get done. Programmers don't make decisions. Programmers are told what to do. The design is about more than just the story; it's also the art, engineering, etc. And we're all designers at this point. We can be programmers and artists when we're told what to program, draw, and record. If you don't know what modules you've been assigned to write then you're launching your IDE or editor too soon, IMO.

alethiophile
Member #9,349
December 2007
avatar

I agree that haphazard code contribution won't get us anywhere, but we also need to get going or else this project will stagnate. Do we have an SVN repo? Candidates for that were Google Code or the thing Thomas Fjellstrom set up. If not, let's get it. If so, then 23 should tell some people what to write.

--
Do not meddle in the affairs of dragons, for you are crunchy and taste good with ketchup.
C++: An octopus made by nailing extra legs onto a dog.
I am the Lightning-Struck Penguin of Doom.

Matt Smith
Member #783
November 2000

OnlineCop. I have stucture almost exactly like that for the units in my 3d RTS project. That's because at this level of API, these game types are very similar.

I think whatever code we write should be as flexible as possible, and not tied down to a specific game.

I think different maps should have their own perspective rules and scale etc. Completely different renderers if necessary. e.g. You could go down a dungeon on the outside map, and find yourself in a 2d platform-game level.

From the start, the game should have a sophisticated menu system that loads add-on games, without requiring rebuilding of the binary.

I strongly suggest using an existing map format and rendering library if possible. Either rip one out of an old game (maybe not KQ, it's GPL anyway) or use Mappy. Mappy has the editor of course, and I don't see anyone volunteering to be the Tools Programmer.

I prefer C myself, but as for Allegro 4 I think this would be a more interesting exercise in Allegro 5. It would help the A5 effort if we were all testing it, for a start. Another advantage is that 3d rendering can be played with without "aw, I can't get Allegro GL to work".

We could develop a reusable framework with no content, which does nothing but maintain its own config file, joystick calibrations, window size & position etc. etc. etc. This is something I want to do anyway for all types of game, but I've never made the effort by myself (with no Mac etc).

Anybody who just wants to play this game, should sign up for the QA Dept.

Edit: UML diagrams would be better than raw code at this point, or a good description of the API divisions between framework, gameplay and renderer.

Mark Oates
Member #1,146
March 2001
avatar

Quote:

as for Allegro 4 I think this would be a more interesting exercise in Allegro 5. It would help the A5 effort if we were all testing it, for a start.

I think using A5 is an awesome idea. What better time than now to try it out? It would help the effort, be hardware accelerated, would encourage all of us to begin learning it, and add a little spark of excitement to the project!

Albin Engström
Member #8,110
December 2006
avatar

Ok.. to everyone who states that programmers are mindless zombies, F*** YOU.

I hate so called game designers, they're useless. They're meant to be specialists in "game design" but all they do is f*** up, they're always the bossy ones and the most employed type, they're always the one most common ones in game-dev-schools. They're the ones that are too lazy, dumb or uncreative to become programmers or graphicans, and they're always the ones to ask what the payment is.

Sorry, of course not all game designers are like this.. I just really really don't like the game design position.

I did not become a programmer so I have to listen to some stupid guy with boring ideas and no motivation, I program so that I can realize my dreams and make something from my ideas. Everyone's a game designer, do people seriosly need game designers?

I decided to look up the credits of some old games of mine.

I only went through a few games but some exampels of games that does not have anyone dedicated to gamedesign are worms 2 and theme hospital! And those are really fun games, oh, theme hospital does have a game designer, lets see who it is.... "bullfrog entertainment", makes me wanna cry.

Althought most old games has dedicated game designers they're very very few, Total annihilation had only 3 of them, and Diablo 2 only has one. And what is the game designers job? Isn't it to design the game? Then how come newer games can't compare with older games even thought they have millions of game designers? ???

Another thing I hate is how some designers actuallt put their F*CKING NAME ON THE GAME, like THEY made it, I feel like ripping their heads off and shit down their necks.

I should go to bed..

bamccaig
Member #7,536
July 2006
avatar

Matt Smith said:

UML diagrams would be better than raw code at this point, or a good description of the API divisions between framework, gameplay and renderer.

Agreed.



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