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Messages - merrak

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Journals / Re: Merrak's Isometric Adventures -- Map Mania
« on: Yesterday at 11:34:38 pm »
Maps Monday. Latest update--I've now (mostly) completed all maps for the game! This includes the level structures themselves and all NPCs. I do not yet have all of the objects placed, though... mostly because I'm still coding a few. These include books for skills, power-up items, and "NPCs" the player can talk to, like the prisoner (technically, these are coded as objects).

There are 15 maps total: three levels for each of the four towers, the central hub area, the dungeon (last area with the boss), and a secret map. I dropped the "bridge map" I had outlined in a previous update. Traversing the central hub isn't as much of a hassle as I originally thought it'd be, and there's a useful save point in there.

The next aspect of the game needing attention is balance. There is a steep difficulty jump between the A tower levels and the B tower levels. Most of the difficulty stems from the lack of skills.

I have 20 skills outlined, and about 2/3 of them coded. I wrote a routine that goes through all of the maps and counts how many experience points are available in them. There's a little over 209,000 exp points total. I worked out the skill costs so that the player can afford at least one new skill after completing a map. The skills available in the hub area are mostly 'qualify of life' skills (like the exploration arrows), but the rest give useful buffs to make combating the higher level enemies much easier.

Two of the skills--"Scout", and "Sneak", may end up having a dramatic effect on game play. Scout will let the player look into neighboring rooms, and Sneak eliminates any sound Marika makes when walking. Since the NPC guards are alerted by sound, the two skills will let the player sneak up on enemies.

The biggest challenge in combat is fighting groups of enemies. Since enemies get stunned easily, a single enemy, even one with a lot of HP, can be easily defeated by frequent blows. Picking off one or two enemies in a group from a distance turns out to be a useful mechanic.

I haven't gotten as far into AI coding as to have the NPCs react to light/dark. Letting the player sneak around in the dark to avoid detection by NPCs sounds like a neat idea, but I might have to explore it more in a sequel. It's just too hard to create rooms with good shadows for sneaking with the resolution I have to work with.

For Towers 2, I'd like to look into full color and taking advantage of shaders to offload some of the lighting work from the main processor. I'm thinking about doing the same for this game, and providing a setting to allow the player to choose which graphics set to play with.

And now--screenshots!

A well lit room...

Shadows working on the infamous stairs...

I snapped this screenshot too late. A horde of enemies appeared from behind those columns. Marika almost died even with 1000 HP cheat (50x more HP than at start)... but has no skills and no armor items equipped. I foresee a lot of playtesting to fine tune the balance.

Exploring dark places...

Ask a Question / Re: Can I market a game I made using a sample game?
« on: June 12, 2019, 09:46:24 pm »
I don't know about the legal aspects... my guess would be no, but you'd have to ask whoever created it (probably one of the Stencyl devs)

Even if it's technically okay, it still doesn't sound like a good idea. Your game would look like all the other games that use those assets.

Ask a Question / Re: Upgrade System (Multiples)
« on: June 04, 2019, 07:40:59 pm »
Here's what I came up with. N is the target level,  c is the fixed cost multiplier, and l will be set to the cost to buy from level 0 through level N.

Ask a Question / Re: Upgrade System (Multiples)
« on: June 04, 2019, 09:10:38 am »
The sum of the first N squares is given by the formula

sum = (1/6) * N * (N + 1) * (2N + 1)

which you can multiply by the fixed value to get the cost of the first N levels.

sum = Fixed * (1/6) * N * (N + 1) * (2N + 1)

So you can use the formula to compute the cost to upgrade from level 0 to level N.

To compute the cost to upgrade from level M to level N, you would need to subtract the sum of the first M levels from the sum of the first N levels.

sum(N) = Fixed * (1/6) * N * (N + 1) * (2N + 1); sum(new level) - sum(current level)

You need to choose the scale at which your importing your sprites. Instead of 4x select 1x if you're creating your graphics at 100%. Once you've imported one image it'll remember your chosen scale so you don't have to do it each time.

Note you need to set if before you import your sprite.

You wrote back one second before me :P

One thing I was going to add-- you can change the default in the game settings. Go to settings > advanced

Ask a Question / Re: Layers in Events
« on: May 23, 2019, 09:22:11 am »
You don't want to put 'Do After' inside a Drawing event. Drawing takes place 60 times per second... every time the screen refreshes.

If you want text, images, or anything else to be drawn after a delay, replace the 'Do After' with an 'if (attribute)' and then set the attribute to true/false in another event.

Journals / Re: Merrak's Isometric Adventures -- Alpha Build 3!
« on: May 22, 2019, 11:08:09 pm »
Oh wow!
I think this is exactly what i was missing.
I totally agree not to make a more complicated dialogue system.
This all looks very cool!

It's also made level design a lot more fun... just like it's more fun playing with Lego when you have more kinds of pieces :D

Journals / Re: Merrak's Isometric Adventures -- Alpha Build 3!
« on: May 21, 2019, 11:02:18 pm »

A Friend in the Towers-- I gave Marika a friendly NPC to talk to. He will give the player some hints on where to go and fill in some backstory. More importantly, I can now easily break the game into stages. Each stage has an objective, but I had to find a way for Marika to know what they are. She enters the towers with the final objective, but the friendly NPCs can help her break it down into smaller objectives that lead to the goal.

The dialog system is very basic. There's no conversation options. I'll add a proper dialog engine for a sequel. But for now, this serves the purpose I need it to, so I won't try to solve problems I don't have.

I also finished populating all four of the level 1 maps with signage, furniture, and decorations. The old, barren rooms now look a lot better.

Ask a Question / Re: HTML5 version of game not playing correctly
« on: May 19, 2019, 10:42:20 pm »
How did you code detection of the correct answers?

Windows / Mac / Flash / HTML5 / Re: Space Pirate
« on: May 16, 2019, 11:43:05 pm »
Again, please give me some feedback if you want to try the game:

  • What are the top 3 things you like (if any)?
  • What are the top 3 things you dislike (if any)?
  • Are you ok with the controls or would you prefer WASD and mouse (to shoot)?
  • Do you think it would be more fun to have ammo for guns?

  • Would you buy the game (if yes for which price? - game has around 3-5 hours gameplay)?
  • Is the performance good? Which system do you use?

I only played for a little bit so far, but I thoroughly enjoyed it. I got through the first mission and am part way through the second. I ran it using Wine on Linux and didn't run into any issues. I didn't try full screen, though.

I might change my assessment after I get further, but here is my initial impression.

What are the top 3 things you like (if any)?
1. Storyline is engaging, and doesn't get in the way of the game.
2. Music, sound effects fit the mood
3. First level was fun to explore. I didn't feel like my hand was being held, which I appreciated.

What are the top 3 things you dislike (if any)?
Nothing comes to mind at the moment.

Are you ok with the controls or would you prefer WASD and mouse (to shoot)?
I prefer keyboard controls over mouse. I haven't tried the controller yet, but I got along fine with the keyboard.

Do you think it would be more fun to have ammo for guns?
Maybe for special weapons, but for now I think I have enough to keep track of.

Would you buy the game (if yes for which price? - game has around 3-5 hours gameplay)?
Price--it's hard to say because I already know what I'd be getting... where as if I were browsing the store, I'd only have your screenshots and trailers to go off of. Still, the $5 to $10 range seems fitting to me.

Is the performance good? Which system do you use?
Ubuntu 16.04 (Wine)
CPU: Intel Core i7-6800K CPU @ 3.8GHz
GPU: GeForce GTX 970, GeForce GTX 970
RAM: 30535MiB / 128865MiB

Ask a Question / Re: Game is disappearing!
« on: May 14, 2019, 12:39:56 pm »

Journals / Re: Merrak's Isometric Adventures -- Alpha Build 3!
« on: May 13, 2019, 07:10:42 pm »
The next hurdle will be to work out a way to inform the player what their objective is. Friendly NPCs would be a good way to do this, but I need to work out why they would be in the towers and willing to help Marika out. She doesn't have any friends here.

Imprisoned friendly NPCs maybe?

That was my first thought and is probably the easiest approach. I need to be careful not to expand the scope of the game too far. It's time to get this one wrapped up and move on to the next adventure.

It sounds interesting, but I don't think it's going to be simple to determine where to make the bend. It's easy to visualize it bending around one corner--but less so solving something like a maze.

Interestingly, I don't see either of them on the market. The two I'm aware of are:

1. Mine, of course:,45313.0.html
2. jihem's, marked 'Abandoned':,15343.0.html

Since jihem's is marked abandoned, I'm not sure if it is compatible with newer versions of Stencyl.  I get the sense mine is harder to use, but it's designed to solve a wider variety of problems. jihem's is probably faster, but is designed to solve a smaller set of problems.

You could also use them as examples for writing your own extension. I don't know about jihem's, but I don't claim any copyright on mine--do what you want with it.

The  Haxe site have a Trojan (Malwarebytes say it) so i cant see the  link

So, for a real game its better downlod the A* Extension or another similar ?

I like more if im making the things by myself, but, thinking about it, im making this with stencyl, if really i like all "maked by my" i should programing by code, no ?

Here's the part that's relevant:

While Haxe has a static type system, this type system can, in effect, be turned off by using the Dynamic type. A dynamic value can be assigned to anything; and anything can be assigned to it. This has several drawbacks:

The compiler can no longer type-check assignments, function calls and other constructs where specific types are expected.
Certain optimizations, in particular when compiling to static targets, can no longer be employed.
Some common errors, e.g. a typo in a field access, can not be caught at compile-time and likely cause an error at runtime.
Dead Code Elimination cannot detect used fields if they are used through Dynamic.
Use of Dynamic should be minimized as there are better options in many situations but sometimes it is just practical to use it. Parts of the Haxe Reflection API use it and it is sometimes the best option when dealing with custom data structures that are not known at compile-time.

If you want to implement A* yourself, I'd recommend writing your own extension, like I did, or using Stencyl's code editor.

I don't know how literal you want to take "making by yourself". Stencyl code blocks are just macros for different strings of code. Blocks are just another way to visualize looking up functions in an API reference. If you want to make a game from scratch, you really shouldn't use any engine--but even then you'll probably be using libraries. I suppose you could write your game using Assembly... but even then aren't you using hardware routines already provided by the designers?

If you want to really start from scratch, I'd look into building your own computer. There are some good guides on doing this out there.

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