Monday, April 21, 2014

Game A Week Challenge week 2: Riftwars Arena. Also PAX East.

So I didn't do a game last last week because of PAX East, which was crazy and I'll get to that in a moment.
The game for this week is Riftwars Arena!

Riftwars Arena is an online multiplayer 6 degrees of freedom deathmatch game. You fly around in your spaceship and shoot other dudes. You can fly down in the lower part to be near obstacles so that you're harder to hit. You can fly around upside down (what does that even mean?) and you can flip and roll and do all sorts of cool aerial maneuvers.
You can probably tell that this is heavily inspired by Descent, which is probably one of the best old games ever.

How do I play this?

Well, here's the thing. You can't. 

wtf man?

Ok, so I know that the whole point of the game a week thing is to make a game that people can play every week, but this time, James, the other half of PixelRouter VR (btw, I am the other other half now, and will be releasing all future collaborative titles with James under that name) has recommended to not release this demo because of strategy. During the week we were developing this, our original collaborative project Riftwars kind of got some attention.

Here's a list of medias regarding Riftwars that occurred last week:
The summary of events is something like this: James went to PAX on sunday with his rig, and without buying any booth space managed to setup and demo Riftwars to a pretty full crowd for most of the day. He posted this on reddit and people started talking about it.

James advised me not to release a demo of Riftwars Arena because we didn't want to distract from the Riftwars demo release. I know that putting a download link to Riftwars Arena on my shitty blog that no one reads will probably generate zero interest from zero people, but I'd rather not rock the boat this time.

Fine

so there you go. I wound up demoing my game at PAX and now you can't play Riftwars Arena. Too bad. You'll probably get a demo in a little while, though I won't make any promises (like my promises mean anything). Also, we might be going full steam ahead on trying to make Riftwars into a real video game that people can buy someday. Isn't the world a weird place?

Riftwars Arena pre-post-mortem

Because I haven't technically released it, but I am pretty much done with it for now, I will write about what went right and what went wrong.

Good:
  • The six degrees of freedom controller is actually really fun to fly around with
  • The networking actually works! I'm getting better at writing networked code.

Bad:
  • Ship model isn't very polished, no textures or interior ship model.
  • Shooting feels kind of weak.
  • Whatever you do, don't shoot the gravity mines.
  • No menus or instructions.
  • Some people have trouble with the controls.
  • uh, didn't actually add in Rift support...

Terrible:
  • It's really hard to actually shoot fast small ships in such a big space. There are a lot of scale problems in general.
  • I spent way too long on the netcode (~8 hours), trying to fix up interpolation issues, which still aren't perfect. Things get pretty bad under packet loss conditions.
  • You can't actually die or respawn yet.
I guess that's it! I guess I'll be doing a game this week? Though, there's 3 events (boston indies, boston unity group, boston vr meetup), so it might be kind of short or bad or maybe it won't even happen.

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

CUBE DEATH PRISON


Here it is: https://drive.google.com/folderview?id=0B209xEE7EEixbHk4XzNfMUdzeDg&usp=sharing

This is my first game a week game! You should know, you'll probably need an 360 controller, or something that fakes your computer into thinking that your controller or keyboard is a 360 controller to play this. Also, it's probably only going to work at full screen at 1920x 1080 or higher, though you can test your luck with this.


CUBE DEATH PRISON is a four player cooperative (or not) twin stick shooting game! Murder cubes in the CUBE DEATH PRISON. Collect microcubes to bolster your Numerical Cube Murder Indicator. Avoid cubes to sustain your cubelust! Circle strafe to morph your true einherjar form!


CONTROLS:

LEFT STICK TO APPLY TORQUE
LONELY RIGHT STICK TO PERPETRATE CUBE VIOLENCE
RIGHT TRIGGER TO CHARGE ADVANCED CUBE ARTILLERY
LEFT TRIGGER TO EXTEND LASER APPENDAGE
RIGHT SHOULDER TO CALCULATE GRAVITY
LEFT SHOULDER TO UNCALCULATE UNGRAVITY
START TO HALT THE FLOW OF TIME

Post mortem

Well, it doesn't work in VR, and it doesn't work in a webplayer (maybe this will be fixed in a while, as this is a Unity beta problem). Also, I was two days late, the game should have been done on Sunday. I will therefore, do a truncated video game week this week. Something simple like a text adventure or a puzzle match three thing, or maybe something else?? Overall, I am pretty pleased with how CUBE DEATH PRISON turned out. It has fun mechanics, compelling progression or at least difficulty. And you can play it with your friends if you have enough controllers. I like that I get to make up fun stories for the menu text.

Things I don't think went the best are the sound effects. The sound effects are kind of bad and also repetitive. And there's no music. Another part that is bad is the compatibility. Only Xbox controllers, and that means only windows and then there's the problem with the UI not scaling exactly right for every resolution.

OVERALL SCORE: 92 REINDEER CUBES.

[escape this fate]