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Minor78's Games

My Freeware Games & Devlog Blog

If you’ve read the “About Me” page which is, well, erm, about me you’ll know that I’m a coding language and maths simpleton.  So I decided to learn some coding principles in Construct – Array’s and Loops.  I decided to make a small map generator using “Cellular Automata”.  Now you may be surprised here but I actually understand CA and have made a game prototype that used CA to make dynamically living and dying platfrom levels.

Things progressed nicely.  But I was stumped by two things:

  1. I was using my Array to spawn tiles that represented land or sea, but it was spawning 5x the tiles that it should.  A quick post on the Construct Forums and newt had the answer.  Construct has a “For Each Element” loop for array and it was looping through the 5 “Z” depths I had set up to hold data.  Problem sorted.
  2. If I couldn’t use the built-in loop.  I had no idea how to structure my own loop, I downloaded an example that was posted to the forums but that didn’t help.  My version didn’t work as planned and looped infinitely.  Again another quick post the the Construct forums and I had two answers.  An example by newt again with a fully working loop.

I’m pretty pleased with how the generator came out and with some of the techniques I’ve learned in Construct.  I would post the generator but it is rather slow when there are 10,000 tiles on screen, and I’m also running a loop on the tiles themselves to run a basic height map.  So I’ll just post a screenshot and a couple of generated maps.

Map Gen

Map Generator

Map Gen 2

Generated Map

Map Gen 3

Generated Map 2

Now I’m going to experiment with the “Perlin Noise” plug-in and see what I make using that.  I may come back to this when I’m more familliar with the programming principles that Construct and other “game making” programs can teach.

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I’ve just completed my first tutorial in Construct.  It’s a 1 level Sokoban clone called SkullKoBan.  I’ve commented all the events in as plain English as I can manage, which is some mean feat when I come from the North West of the UK :).

A small note – I’m no Construct expert or programming deity so there may be things in the events that can be done easier, better or more efficient.  I just evented it to the best of my ability.

Oh and you’ll need to have Lucid’s wonderful SpriteFont plugin installed for it to work correctly, there is a link in GMG’s reply in the thread on the Construct forums.

SkullKoBan

SkullKoBan Gameplay 1

SkullKoBan2

SkullKoBan Gameplay 2

SkullKoBan3

SkullKoBan Gameplay 3

YouTube Video Clicky Link

Construct Forum Post

DropBox Tutorial Link (.cap file, EXE & graphics) 0.89MB

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I’ve just uploaded a new Bit Hero video to Youtube.  Basically just shows all the additions I mentioned in the post below.  I also added some sexy annotations to the video too, I’ve never tried them before but they work really nice.

Hmmmmm.  Embedding the video doesn’t seem to be working for me so heres a clicky link.  🙂

Next on the agenda – Nail down the gameplay mechanics, write the basic story, plan a few levels and clean up my event sheets so they are workable when the game gets larger.

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Not really much of an update but I’m hoping this DevLog thing will keep me motivated.  So then what new goodies have I been working on:-

  • Real Time lighting – Don’t think I’m going to use this.  It adds nothing to the game really and because the background is mostly solid black it doesn’t look that good anyway.
  • New HUD – well it really isn’t that new it’s in the screenshots in the post below.
  • Cutscenes/Information – The method in the last video was a bit too intrusive to the game, and when I say a bit I mean a lot.  So I’ve changed it again.  This new method can be seen in the screens below and is much nicer than the screen being taken over by a fake Amstrad CPC screen.
  • I overcame a problem with using Lucid’s wonderful SpriteFont plugin for Construct.  Basically I couldn’t get the plugin to write the text (like a typewriter) when a variable was a certain value, which for the life of me I couldn’t work out why.  I still really don’t know why it wouldn’t work, but I’ve made a small work around and now the plugin will type my text whenever.
  • I’ve added the cutscene/info for the basic tutorial on what controls are what.
  • I’ve created the death sequence for both Bit and Droid.  Which I rather like.  🙂
  • Some more basic stuff like switches, doors, some more art stuff and animations.

So not really a great deal but at least I’m still working on it and more to the point enjoying it.  Still the .cap file is a mess of edited events, borrowed event sheets and stuff that does nothing.  So I’ll have to go though it all and tidy it up :(.  Here have a screenshot.  :).

Bit Hero New

Bit Hero Gameplay Screen - Watch out for lazers

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So I’ve started work on a new game.  Currently called Bit Hero, it’s going to be a small platform exploration game, maybe with puzzle elements, I haven’t worked out the finer details yet.  You control our Hero – Bit, he’s the guy in the spacesuit.  On your travels you are aided by your Droid, cleverly named Droid.  You can switch between the characters and take control of Droid, who is good for exploring down tunnels to small for Bit and areas out of reach to Bit.  Although if you travel too far from Bit the remote signal is lost.

They say a picture is worth a thousand words so here’s a few screens from my test level.

Bit Hero 1

Bit Hero Gameplay 1

Bit Hero 2

Bit Hero Gameplay 2

Bit Hero 3

Bit Hero Gameplay 3

Bit Hero 4

Bit Hero Gameplay 4 - Controlling Droid.

So far I’m doing well with the programming and even, shock horror, the art side of the game.  All I have to do now is nail down how the game will play and what direction to take it in.  Currently I have too many ideas buzzing around my noggin, so as soon as I can dwindle them down the game should come along nicely.

🙂

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Hell yeah I’m on a roll.  Memorized, my memory based platformer has been featured on the wonderful Pixel Prospector.  And I’ve got to admit I had a strange stirring in the trouser department when I found out, as it’s one of my goto websites when looking for new games and a bit of inspiration when I get stuck in a rut.

Anyway the Memorized entry on Pixel Prospector can be found here. And a short playthough video of the first few levels, recorded by Pixel Prospector himself can be found on YouTube here.

These two features of my games work as great motivation to me, because enjoying making the games is sometimes not enough.  I want people to play and have an opinion about the games I create.

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I was checking my GameJolt download/views totals for RogueLight the other day and discovered that the dowloads where greater than the views for certain days.  I couldn’t work it out for a while because I always link to the profile rather than the direct download, then it dawned on me, I’m getting the direct download hits from somewhere else.

So I checked my YouTube stats and found where my hits had come from.  RogueLight was featured on a Russian Games site, and for someone who has made only two games, RogueLight being my first, I was a bit chuffed to say the least.  Using the power of the t’internet I was able to translate the Russian and find out what my Russian cousins had to say, and although the English translation was wonky, most comments where rather positive.

If you feel like reading the broken English Google translation, you can clicky here.

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