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Messages - CMK2901

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Game design / Re: Death
« on: December 13, 2007, 04:37:58 AM »
I think that in adventure games, especially such as Space Quest, humorous deaths help take away the sting a bit.  I'd say the best bet is to provide a "Retry" button, at least for deaths which aren't obvious.  You could even add some more humor to the ordeal by removing this option from really obvious deaths, like drinking acid.  Have the narrator say something about how you should have known better.

I find that death is also perfectly acceptable if the player knows it will be a result of the action.  It's just like any game; in Super Mario, it would be ridiculous if Mario just randomly died from jumping, but they aren't going to remove the death from pits just because it's frustrating.  Like everything in adventure games, make it logical and understandable.

Feature requests, suggestions / Moving the Camera?
« on: December 13, 2007, 04:30:32 AM »
This isn't so much a feature suggestion as a feature inquiry...while I think the functionality would be interesting/useful, it's not necessarily something that I'm currently planning on using (if it was there, though, I'd try to work it in somehow).

Question: Is it possible to move 3D scene cameras in real time?  And if not, is this functionality even possible?

I've recently been looking into moving my project into the 2.5D realm, and thought it would be cool to do a sort of view transition between different views of a room, rather than just an instant jump.  This technique has been used in some other 2.5D games - the one I can think of off the top of my head is Final Fantasy 8...the idea is, if you can move the 3D camera and have a video file which visually mimics the 3D camera's movement through a scene, it would appear that that the entire environment is moving, with the 3D model moving in correct relation to the rest of the scene.  These would also be useful to transition to a cutscene directly from the scene view in a more immersive way.

So, it's easy enough to make the transition videos, but I was unsure about the 3D camera stuff.

Bug reports / ProjectManager Crash on 3D Actor Preview
« on: December 13, 2007, 04:18:10 AM »
I found what seems to be a recurring bug in ProjectManager; 3D model previewing works fine, but when previewing the .png file for the model's clothing/UV texturing, and then switching to the 3D model the program crashes.  This doesn't happen when switching from any file but the UV texture map.  From my limited understanding of such things, I'd guess it has something to do with ProjectManager using the .png file for the preview, but also trying to use it with the model preview at the same time, but really I have no clue. ;)

Hope that's helpful,

Technical forum / Re: Help! "PlayVideo" Problems.
« on: October 24, 2007, 10:23:39 AM »
When you call "Game.PlayVideo", you are really sort of telling the engine to play a video on the "Game" object, which is the whole screen.  This is what allows the user to click and skip your video.

If you have an entity in your scene (let's call it "VidEnt") at position 0,0 on the screen, and the video was the right size to fill the screen, you could call VidEnt.PlayVideo/VidEnt.PlayTheora to play an unskipable movie on the VidEnt entity.  I believe that is basically what Mnemonic is getting at.

General Discussion / Re: Sales of adventure games
« on: October 06, 2007, 01:01:10 AM »
Or self-publish.  If you can get a team together that doesn't expect to be paid in advance, then it's perfectly possible that you finish a game and have all the rights to it - no publisher involved.

Of course, this is a much riskier process.  But some companies do it, and if the game's a success, there's no one to answer to, and the profits are yours.  It sounds worth the risk to me.

Technical forum / Re: Starforce
« on: October 03, 2007, 02:21:52 AM »
Valve's Steam content delivery system, although it had some big problems initially, seems to have become a very stable tool to both electronically distribute a game (thereby reducing packaging/shipping costs) and to avoid piracy.  I've actually found it rather convenient; when I moved to Los Angeles and got a new computer, rather than bringing my CDs along, I could just download the games registered to my account through Steam.  I'm sure it's not the easiest thing in the world to get your game on Steam, but some sort of smaller arcade games they offer makes me think it's possible.  And, of course, Valve would take some of your sales.

I mean, I don't know much about how Valve operates Steam at all, but it seems like a good anti-piracy tool that actually tends to be a convenience rather than a hindrance.  The only problem I've ever had is the inability to move games to another account.

Or you can piss off players with Starforce, which says to me more than anything that the publisher/developer thinks I'm a criminal.  >:D

General Discussion / Re: Anyone know a good free sound effect library?
« on: September 29, 2007, 12:10:39 AM »
I haven't really looked closely at the licenses on this site, but I've used to find some nice sound effects for school projects and part of my game's UI stuff.  If you make your own SFX, you could even add yours to their library.

Community bulletin board / Re: WME Tech Demo...
« on: September 28, 2007, 06:46:35 PM »
Hey, that sounds great.  I have a fair amount of experience using Blender to create backgrounds, so if you need any pre-rendered backgrounds for it, just let me know.  I'm not saying it's amazing, but...its something.  So let me know when you're ready to start putting everything together. :)

Community bulletin board / WME Tech Demo...
« on: September 28, 2007, 08:45:53 AM »
Hi everyone,

Both to better help myself understand the many features and abilities of WME, and to hopefully provide a resource for the community, I'm hoping to create sort of an updated WME Tech Demo, one that will try to showcase the abilities of the engine, provide useful code for new users, and advertise the engine as a professional-grade game creation tool.  It wouldn't really be a game; just a sort of test world with different rooms showcasing different features.  I can't really say whether I'll have time to finish this in a timely manner (I am in college right now), but I'm very interested.

My current list of engine features I want to showcase:
  • Video w/ Subtitles
  • Multiple Interface Examples (Sierra, LucasArts, FMV Smartpointer, Fandango, Myst (Panoramic View?), Text Parser)
  • 3D Characters (Dynamic Lighting/Shadows, Bone Animations, Lip Sync(?), Object Interaction)
  • Parallax Scrolling Background/Foreground
  • Object Video Playback -- TVs, Billboards, etc.
  • Multiple Inventory/Player Character Examples
  • Particle Effects
  • Various Dialogue Structures (Simple, Trees, Close-ups...sort of a function of interfaces)
  • Particle Effects (smoke, weather, sparks, etc)
  • Music (Multi-channel and crossfade examples)
  • Localization/Package Usage example (?)
  • Options Dialogs (save, load, volume, gameplay options)(advanced interface effects)
  • Screen Filters(as in, sprite overlays to simulate grain/lighting/blurs)

So, I have a few questions right away (which probably belong in the technical forum, but hey): Is it possible to incorporate both 3D and 2D characters into the same game?  Would a panoramic first person view be possible?  Can localization settings be set through an options menu on the fly? 

And then the community BB part: Am I missing any features that WME is capable of?  Are there certain things you'd like to see demonstrated in the tech demo?  I'd like to hit everything that WME is capable of in this demo at least once, so give me any things that I've left off this list.


Community bulletin board / Forum Link to Wintermute Website
« on: September 28, 2007, 06:59:52 AM »
Well, there doesn't seem to be a particularly good place to put this, so I'll just cautiously stick it here...

Just a quick request regarding the forums...would it be possible to make the black WME banner at the top of the forum pages link back to the main Wintermute site?  This would be useful both for my own personal laziness, and for just the overall flow of the site...the forums would feel less separated from everything else.  Just a thought...

Technical forum / Re: WME docs improvement suggestions
« on: September 20, 2007, 09:09:30 AM »
It took me the longest time to figure out how events were propagated to individual items from the game... I talked about that a bit in the other thread. 

It might also be a good idea to include something in the help file as to what the main game files do, what can be added to those files, and what can be modified - files like game.script, game_daemon.script,, etc.

I was also surprised to find you could add your own methods to, say, the game object by using the method keyword.  If you search for "method" in the help file, you get dozens of entries, none of which really jump out at a user to explain this functionality.

You might also benefit from some visual flow diagrams illustrating the order code is executed in (knowing specifically where the "point of entry" is in the scripts), and maybe a hierarchy of objects (like, I think Game is at the top, but I'm still not completely sure). 

Also, this might be a bit off topic, but the tech demo that shows off the engine is kind of...iffy.  I mean, yes, it showcases the technologies, but I'd think it should also make someone say "Wow, I can make something like this with Wintermute!?!"  Unfortunately, it doesn't especially elicit that response; to be completely honest, I almost decided not to use Wintermute because I was pretty unimpressed with the demo at first.  Even if it doesn't showcase any new engine features, a new demo with more professional production values might help "inspire" users who are just trying the engine out for the first time.  You know, wow them a bit.  If you're interested in updating this, I might have time to give it a shot.

But, yeah, otherwise, the forum support is amazing; I don't think I've ever seen a forum thread that doesn't get at least one response; you never leave engine users hanging, and I'm sure it isn't easy, but it's great work.  ::rock

And just to note...that wiki is NOT my tutorial; it just contains a link to my tutorial, if you look hard enough.  ;)

Technical forum / Re: Please where do i Start??
« on: September 20, 2007, 05:04:15 AM »
I'll try to shed some light on this for you, because it took me awhile to get used to how WME handles things.  And even now, I'm not completely sure, but it's a much more powerful system than AGS.  It seems that WME tries to be more obtuse than AGS...where AGS might have a function Game.shakeScreen(), WME will provide the lower-level abilities to make your own shakeScreen() function.  Overall, this makes for much more possibility.

Some thoughts:

1) The directory tree in the editor is simply a reflection of the folders in your project root directory.  So, if you have your project "GreatGame" in the projects folder, the directory tree will display the folders in "GreatGame".  The reason I tell you this seemingly obvious point is because it is best to take the example template game and just reorganize the directories into something you understand to build your game around.  For my project, I renamed the directories to: actors, entities, fonts, interface, items, scenes, scripts, sprites.  Not only does this make it easier to wrap your head around where all the resources are, but it also helps to keep your raw assets organized (if that makes sense).

2) Regard everything in WME as an object, which is just a bit different from AGS.  The "Game" object is the main sort of overarching object that encompasses everything else, but every entity in your scenes is an object, and can have it's own script (which for me, goes in the "[sceneName]/scr" folder).  For example, if I have an object in my scene called "MovieScreen", I can have a file in the "scr" directory of my scene directory called "MovieScreen.script", where you do things that apply to the movie screen.

3) What you seem to be confused about is putting movies in can't just put a movie entity in the scene for it to play; you have to do it through a script.  Because the "Game" object encapsulates everything, if you run "Game.PlayTheora();" it will play over everything.  If you used the command "this.PlayTheora();" in "MovieScreen.script", for example, "this" would refer to the MovieScreen object and the video would play at the position of the MovieScreen object in the scene.  When they say "Run the video from a script", it means you'll have to program a bit.

4) A big hurdle for me was understanding events when I first started using WME.  There is a chain that events go through to reach your scene scripts that is as follows:

User ---> Game.script ---> [Objects]

If you open "Game.script", you'll see something similar to this somewhere:
Code: [Select]
on "LeftClick"
// what did we click?
var ActObj = Game.ActiveObject;
//if we clicked on a scene object...
if(ActObj != null)
// else propagate the LeftClick event to a scene

Basically, when there is a left click, this event is called, which gets the object that was clicked and applies the even to that object, unless no object was clicked, in which case it just sends an even to the scene.  Generally, this is "LeftClick", but you can call it anything you want, which is the power behind events.  You can put ActObj.ApplyEvent("foo"); in the above clause and then have a "on "foo"" block in your object code to do whatever you want.  For example, my code for this section checks what cursor the player is using to pick between applying Look, Interact, Talk, and Walk events.  You could do anything with this., I hope some of that was helpful.  I still have trouble understanding some things, but this is how I explain it to myself, and it seems to make sense.  Of course, if anything about is just flat out wrong or too confusing, I invite a moderator to delete this or modify it.  But I hope it sheds some light on how things work.

Sorry you haven't got much of a response, and I'm sure you want to hear from someone other than the same guy, but I just wanted to say that I like the direction you're going in.  If you're going for a certain style, they're perfect.

It seems now that it's all in the details.  And, anyway, I think that if you just colored in what you've got now, it could look stunning (I'd look at for a really great tutorial on coloring and lighting with a cartoon style).  And just, again, I suppose the light source could be the hallway or  the computer screen, but if that's not you're intention, I'd consider a light source.

That's all I got.  Hopefully you'll get some more responses; if not, you could always post this on the AGS board for a critique; they need not know you're not using their engine >:D.

Game design / Re: How do I begin???
« on: August 30, 2007, 04:03:40 AM »
I would really, really, REALLY recommend you just go with Blender.  I mean, it's free.  Come on.  If you want pre-rendered, Blender will let you get going without all that license crap (I mean, I've never met a person who's actually bought 3D Studio Max) and the renders can be really remarkable, if you have some patience.

As far as just drawing your background...that can get frustrating if you're going for realistic.  THIS is as far as I got with drawing scenes.  What I've found makes drawn scenes more impressive is the use of lighting/detail.  But it takes way too long and gets very frustrating when you want to change some tiny thing, but it would take forever.  You don't have to deal with that with pre-rendered stuff.

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