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Messages - Enoch

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Resolved Questions / Re: Lighting effects, hidden objects.
« on: May 28, 2014, 05:35:33 pm »
Oh those are your tutorials! I was wondering who made them (I know it say the name of the creator but I didn't connect that with your name for some reason). I need to check them out, they look very helpful.  And that seems to be exactly what I needed. I think I'll just have to come up with different colored "masks" in various shapes for the different lights for the varying types of lab equipment. Sounds a little tedious so I'll focus on animations and more objects before adding those in then. Seems like I won't have to make every single room. These new updates add a great deal of flexibility.   Now I just need to look into the most efficient way to do flickering lights.

Its an interesting question. I would just worry about customers feeling cheated after the free version is released. Most people I know would prefer to have a "demo" before making a full purchase. 

Resolved Questions / Lighting effects, hidden objects. (solved)
« on: May 27, 2014, 02:38:33 pm »
I did look up some other threads but I didn't find an answer that directly addressed my concerns.

Background information that may or may not help question. Can be skipped:
So here is the thing, I am starting a pretty massive project I have been bouncing around for about two years. I have done quite a bit to refine the story and added some unique concepts that I think will make the game stand out. I still have a long way to go from the conceptual phase to actual prototyping, but for the first time I can say progress is being made. However, I like both the experience, credibility, and expertise to work on this project alone or request help (creating a team). In order to resolve all of these issues, I have begun working on 4 smaller projects that will all contribute to the final game concept.

Each of the smaller games contributes to the back story of important characters in the main game, so that players will be familiar with them, without the need of a long drawn introduction. Not to mention, the animations, objects, and tile sets made for each game could be reused for the main project. 

The idea is to release 4 smaller games, each made of a number of episodes that will be released in sequence of the story, kind of similarly to an online comic. Ex: first game would be composed of 4 episodes that are approximately an hour in length. Each episode would be released the following week. The best example I could think of would be The Walking Dead game done by telltale. The difference being it would be free online in a format similar to a webcomic.

I am currently focusing on the first episode which takes place in the confines of a laboratory. This first game explores  issues relating to the scientific method, philosophy of science, ethics with regards to scientific testing, mind/body problem, and the death penalty. With these subjects in mind, it seems quite appropriate to make this first episode a psychological horror game. This is also because the game play mechanics seem much simpler. I can focus more on walking, running, and sprinting mechanics as well as environmental effects/atmosphere  and then in later episodes add on gunplay mechanics, vaulting, jumping, wall running, and sliding (other features that make combat more exciting and fast paced).

So now as I learn how to create the game play mechanics, I have started to work on what I can; the environment and atmosphere. The problem I have currently run into is how to approach the lighting effects. I am still learning how to use stencyl. (I have done numerous tutorials and I am about 60% done with the intro course on udemy). But I have not found/thought up a good approach to “dynamic” lighting effects. I put the word dynamic in quotations because I am not expecting stencyl to be able to portray 2d moving shadows like this example:

But I am wanting to show objects in the background being darker, flickering light effects, glowing lights on objects, and even basic lense flare effects.
This is the basic look of the tiles. I haven't bothered to work on the wall decorations (like labels, warning signs, fire extinguishers) or the blood and gore can be added after I finish making all the different objects you would "expect" to find in a scientific lab researching genetic modification.

Here is what it looks like with some basic lighting effects done with Gimp:
And then here is another effect I thought was neat that makes it look like your viewing the game from a security camera. I was inspired by the game lone survivor. I may attempt to make it grainier. I was going to make an a transparent, still foreground.
Now all of this looks rather rough and unpolished, but I am just trying to iron down the technique and process so I can work a bit more efficiently. I'm guessing the glowing objects (with the poorly done glowing pixels) would have to be actors placed into the scene. But how do I make them look darker as though they are in the background. I sure you can see that the first picture lacks depth, and the objects all look like the player can interact with them.

In the edited photos, I tried to make it obvious that the player can interact with only the computer that's illuminated and in front of all of the effects. In this case the computer terminal. This should rather obvious, especially if the player is in front of all of the effects as well and the illuminated objects are the only ones that are solid. But sometimes I have to have the player darken with the rest of the environment. Like if I wanted to have a flickering light turn on and off. Or have the "light" effect the player sprite.

So to put things plainly:

For objects in the background, am I going to have to color them myself to be darker like that? I was hoping there was some kind of visual effect I could use, but it seems like I will have to hand craft each scene and add actors to act as dynamic lights by adjusting the transparency. (possibly flickering effects could be done with an animated actor...) If that is the case, how could I have flickering lights hide other actors from the players view and appear make them reappear when the light comes on?


Ask a Question / Re: Zoomings effects on resolution?
« on: March 05, 2013, 06:38:29 pm »
Thanks for the fast response

And that seems to work (when I'm loading up the game for a test run). So when I publish the game it will be zoomed in like that? Or is that just a tool for debugging so I can see the game zoomed in?

And is this the best way to go about this or should I attempt to re-size the sprites now before I get to far? I ask this because I was hoping to release the game on multiple platforms when the feature is released and I don't know how this would effect the clarity with multiple screen sizes.

If you have ever played "swords and sworcery" on a tablet or computer the pixels are crystal clear regardless of your actual screen resolution.

Ask a Question / Zoomings effects on resolution?
« on: March 05, 2013, 08:46:46 am »
So I've been working on a little project for a while and I had a few questions on how to go about a potential issue I am trying to avoid. So essentially, I'm trying to sprite a retro game and afterwords add some neat "modern" visuals ("glowing" bullets [done with transparent png images], fancy parallax backgrounds, basic physics, ect) to enhance the atmosphere. Here is a screenshot of some of what I've gotten done just as a reference:

The thing is, as you can see, the sprites and tile sheets I have made are very small (to fit that retro image). The game itself is suppose to be zoomed in of course. The protagonist would be around this size or maybe larger:

a lot of frames for a small sprite but they will be large on the screen and I'm trying to make the animations smooth

of course to do zoom in like that I had to do it on a paint program and take a screen shot to avoid distortion. If I was to import my small tile sheets to stencyl would I be able to zoom in in-game and avoid any kind of blurry effect?

And even if I could, I've noticed working will reresizeally small tiles and actors it rather... Challenging. Is there some way I could make them bigger without distorting them (I could use paint but I'm hoping there is a more efficient way) or just make big sprites initially and not have to re-size them later on?

Would it be better to keep small sprites or re-size them?

Game Ideas / Re: An RPG idea
« on: August 07, 2012, 11:25:36 pm »
That background makes a big difference. Just wish the brush strokes that makes the trees didn't go in the same direction. The Ground also needs a fix so it matches everything else.  But that's a great start point.

Chit-Chat / Re: You first game creation tool?
« on: August 07, 2012, 11:20:57 pm »
When I was about 10 when I used rpg maker. Can't recall what version, but I did use two different versions. The other one was game maker... But it retrospect it was awful in comparison to Stencyl.

Chit-Chat / Re: Advantages of Vector-based images vs Spriting
« on: August 05, 2012, 12:35:20 am »
Won't lie. Most of what you said is far beyond my small untrained mind.  :o
 But basically images made of pixels are larger files when the image is larger, where as the size of vector images is determined by the complexity of the image (almost disregarding size). So a large simple vector image may take less space than a small intricate one.

When you make vector images larger the increase in data is proportionally less than if you increased the size of a pixel image?  :-\

Chit-Chat / Re: Advantages of Vector-based images vs Spriting
« on: August 03, 2012, 01:57:51 pm »
That looks really good! But it sounds like it took a lot of work to get the effect required to make that image look less like a cartoon. It really sounds like working with vectors takes a significant amount of skill and time for a single image.

I'm not going to say one is harder than the other because they are two different things.... buts really that's it isn't it? They are two completely different methods requiring (what seems like) entirely different skills and techniques. 

Chit-Chat / Re: Advantages of Vector-based images vs Spriting
« on: August 02, 2012, 07:19:59 pm »
Well it seems like the best file type to export is png (as expected). It also seem like when working with vector images, the canvas should be as close to the image as possible in order to insure that you get the most accurate result.

How does that work when you have animations though? Do i have to make sprite sheets the same way I would with a regular pixel sprite sheet?

HTML5 supports vector, but it's slower than rasterized images. I imagine that there are similar issues with iOS and Android. So, this is a tricky issue.

You think the issue would persist even if the game was downloaded to the device? (computer, phone, tablet) I can understand why flash moves slow sometimes, but what makes this so? Are there calculations constantly being done that insure the smoother lines and shapes, where as pixels are already predetermined (image stays the same even if you zoom in and out).

(forgive me if anything I'm saying doesn't make sense. I have little understanding of vector images)

Game Ideas / Re: Meta-Games
« on: August 02, 2012, 03:35:12 pm »
It's seems to me (based off what your story) that you grew more attached to the NPC's as they progressed through the game with you. As they begin to show more interest in you ,being the protagonist of the game, you as the player will do the same. Does this mean that character development is the secret?This of course, as you mentioned, would just be one technique but it does mean that in order to do this, it takes a lot of time establishing the personality of the NPCs before they seem human.

This would also suggest that it only makes sense, adding hard moral choices after the player has had time to grow some kind of connection to the characters in the game. This makes the choice seem more significant and this can be reinforced if the choice changes the story significantly throughout the game.

This seems like a reliable method, and I've seen it used before. But I can't think of any others that would give the game and story a more immerse effect.

Game Ideas / Re: An RPG idea
« on: August 02, 2012, 02:56:24 pm »
I'm assuming this is in the prototype stages but visually it looks pretty neat so far. What are you using to make the trees and grass?

Chit-Chat / Re: Advantages of Vector-based images vs Spriting
« on: August 02, 2012, 02:28:11 pm »
I can see how that would become a problem. (Import the .svg of a gun into the game and it's larger than the players character.) So In addition to drawing the image, when importing yo have to specify the size of the image? How is size really determined with vector images? I'm assuming they don't measure with pixels.

Also, if you re-sized the image after you made the png would it increase the chances of distortion?

Chit-Chat / Re: Why do so many indie devs do this?
« on: August 02, 2012, 02:26:02 pm »
From what I've seen, a lot of the games are incomplete on the Stencyl Arcade. Users will put up the game because the game play mechanics are finalized and work (enough). This doesnt really make the game finished... The final touches are often missing but people would rather get the game out there so they have something to show for their work, but that really doesn't make it a complete game.

I don't think anyone can say that they are bad a game design. It's not like its something your born knowing. It more a lack of inexperience. It's not like people are sharing a list of principles on how to make your game more fun and immersive in the first few tutorials on Stencylpedia.   

Game Ideas / Re: Meta-Games
« on: August 02, 2012, 08:15:19 am »
@Greg-Anims I think that's one of the really big things that make this idea hard to do. What I felt was one of the biggest problems of Fallout 3 was how all the characters felt like aliens (this is why I have a lot of friends who have killed almost every NPC in the game). If the player doesn't feel anything than why should it matter to them? And how do you get the player to feel something?

It seems like you have to get the player to draw connections to the characters (or even objects) in the game. But how can you go about doing that in a way that doesn't come off as funny? How can you make a scene in a 2d side scroller look horrific than. The indi game I have seen attempt it is really Lone Survivor. 


Yea this kind of thing seems really really challenging... What would be the best way to go about it? Just have the choices you make be linked to attributes that will set different things off? Seems like programing could easily become some kind of exponentially expanding tree of possible outcomes making it seem overwhelming.

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