The SHMUP – UDK Project Deviation

SHMUP1While working on my UDK project (tentative title: AI Uprise), I decided to take a bit of a deviation and try out a different style of game in UDK: The Shoot ‘Em Up – created entirely in Kismet. For now I decided to go with the top-down camera but I may look in to creating a sidescroll variation of it as well.

After I got the gameplay up and running, I thought about how I can integrate this in to AI Uprise. I may play with the idea of making this an assault mission on a target, or a way to get to another location. If it flows well, there’s no doubt I would love to integrate this in to my final game.

Worst-case scenario, I could always just create some additional levels and release this as an entirely standalone game. 😀

Project: AI Uprise

As mentioned in my last post, I am following-up with some additional game information (and screenshots). First and foremost, I have a tentative working title: AI Uprise. Given the premise of the game is stopping rebellious artificial intelligence, it may or may not stick as the final title. It does sound better than constantly referring to it as my “UDK Project”.

Now on to the screenshots. Here are some work-in-progress shots of the outdoor landscape/overworld and the initial training level (used to introduce the player to various gameplay mechanics).

Project Update

Progress certainly hasn’t stopped on my UDK project. In-fact it’s coming along quite nicely.

Since the last update, I have made some code changes to the underlying engine. For example, instead of creating the camera zooms by changing the offset value by a small amount and then repeating it until the desired zoom is reached. Instead now, I use a linear interpolation to get to the final value which starts off fast and then slows down toward the end, creating a much more smooth, natural motion. Beyond that I have created the base landscape for the overworld and began work on the introduction level (which teaches the player all of the controls).

Screenshots and videos will follow in the coming days.

Level Streaming in UDK

Progress has been slow on this project to say the least, however I have recently decided to get some of the more important core functionality tested and working – level changes!

I could have created multiple maps, and when making the transition I could have used a hard load time, but then items, weapons and pickups wouldn’t carry over in to the next level. Instead using level streaming I am able to import all levels in to a single level and load them in and out as needed. Doing this I can near eliminate load times and carry items through multiple levels without any performance hits.

Check the below video for this (rough) level streaming in action.

Another New Project?!

As a bit of an offshoot from my Unreal Engine project, I got the idea for a simple 2D sidescroll/platform game where the player is always running forward and it is up to them to time their ducks and jumps to make it through the level. After getting this idea, I knew that I had to make it (despite it not being completely original). So I decided to begin creating this using GameMaker 8.0 Pro and 3 days later, I have a working concept and a playable game I’m calling: Retro Runner!

retro-mario-b2Brainstorming the back story and other ideas behind this, I decided to keep it simple, retro and a bit nostalgic. For this reason, there is no real back story. You’re just a character running through classic 8-bit and 16-bit environments. As of now, I only have games of the 8-bit era: Super Mario Bros, Castlevania and Contra. I’m still thinking about what other games would make for simple, yet challenging environments (so if you have any, please let me know).

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Putting the Raspberry Pi to Use

After countless months just sitting in my closet, I have finally found a practical use for my Raspberry Pi. I made a previous post about making a power box for it, and I finally decided to finish it. The box itself was all wired and basically set to go but after sanding it, I never painted it. Well the paint is (finally) drying on it as I type this.

Before doing that however, I hooked it up and began to configure some software for it. After installing the newest version of Raspbian (Debian), I took to installing PHP, Apache, MySQL, and Mantis Bug Tracker; the later being the most important. I’ve been considering bug tracking solutions for a while now, but popular ones such as Jira are just too expensive and the WordPress plugin was a bit too simplistic. Finally comparing Mantis to Bugzilla, I decided to go the Mantis route.

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UDK Project – Early Test

I began working on a platforming game project using the Unreal Development Kit and finally got the core systems fleshed out. I had originally planned on implementing all of these views in to a single system, but problems arose with projectiles hitting the target on a 2-D plane while doing so. Not to mention if the player is moving and suddenly the view changes, it can be confusing and may cause them to run off a ledge.

So in the end I made 3 separate systems:

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