Verge v0.0.3

Update v0.0.3 has just been released adding another 30 new icons.

Verge is now an open Alpha release and can be found on the Google Play store here. If you’re interested in checking it out then send an email to request a promo code

Verge v0.0.2

verge

I’ve just released an icon pack for android, it’s still in alpha while I try to increased the quantity of icons. It’s just a simple flat theme icon pack which currently consists of 140 icons.

I’m starting on v0.0.2 as I’ve just created an additional 83 icons in the last couple of weeks. The app itself can scan your installed apps and send me the IDs so I can see the apps people are using and create any missing icons.

 

Map outline completion

The map outline has now been completed so I can finally start concentrating on the actual layout and finer details of the map itself.

I've also finished the import from Pyxel Edit into the game and the video shows a quick device recording so apologies for the jerky movements. You’ll also have to excuse the black right border, it’ll be covered by UI so it didn’t need to go to the edge of the screen

One minor issue which is going to annoy me is there's a small line between each tile. This is a pixel or so from the Java bitmap selection functionality I'm using to get part of the tileset onto a Sprite. Not a huge issue, it's just going to bug me til it's sorted.

Runners Map Implementation

Up til now I’ve just been developing on a testbed 20×20 tile grid. This has been fine for testing but I wasn’t sure how well it’d run with the real map size of 254×212.

Method #1 – one big canvas

The original method was using one big canvas and drawing each tile to it which was fine for the small number of tiles used for testing. For the final number of tiles however resulted in instant failure due to bitmap size restrictions. I had considered using multiple smaller bitmaps but went on to trying the next method

Method #2 – individual tiles

The second method was using a separate sprite for each individual tile instead of one giant one. This had marginal success as in it didn’t fall over instantly. Instead it was just horrifically slow and made the game unusable. I spent quite a bit of time diagnosing bottlenecks and trying to speed things up. The main idea was to stop rendering all the tiles which were off screen but there was still the overhead of the tiles existing in the first place. This led me to come up with the final method

Method #3 – reusable tiles

The final method came from the idea: what if I didn’t need all the tiles created at once, all I need is enough tiles to cover the screen then reuse them when they’re out of sight. So now if a tile moves too far to the left and off the screen, it redraws and repositions itself to be the next tile on the right.

map-2017-11-22

In this example, there’s only ever 80 tiles (8×10) yet I’m able to create a map of all 53,848 tiles with minimal overhead.

Runners 2017-11-17

Over the last few weeks I’ve made a little more progress on the map but most of the time has been spent on the code base. Map-wise I’ve continued working around the map to get the edges in place and started the rough placing for a mountainous path (the swirly bit).
map-big

Code wise I’ve been reworking the tasks to allow building up a task queue so you can set your runner to do multiple tasks without interruption. They still need the option to view active tasks as well as remove or edit them.

I’ve also added in basic Quests. They’re randomly assigned at the moment but I’ll add in some structure later on. They’re automatically assigned upon reaching a location and they have a requirement of delivering one or more of a specific item. You can then assign the task to a runner to deliver an item if the runner have it in their inventory.

It’s all pretty rough but at least progress is being made.

Pixel map

I'd started working on an idea for a game a while back and it faded into the background but now I'm back to working on it. The main concept is a supply / demand style game where you have to obtain specific items and deliver them.

It's going to take place on an island which I had originally intended to be generated but on reflection it wouldn't add anything so I'm rethinking it to be a static map. For this I started out with looking for an island map I liked the look of for a starting point and I went with Lombok in Indonesia.

lombok-island-map

I've been using Pyxel Edit to create a tile map and tile over the original image.

runners-map-2017-10-19

I've created about thirty tiles to handle the majority of angles of the edges but I'll probably create a few more for variety. Once the outline is done I can start adding some additional features.

Polymesh navigation evolved

Over the years I’ve created quite a few code examples which were pretty much just proof of concept projects. The polymesh navigation was one of these.

Another one was to create a php socket server and html client and yet another was the city generation script. These were all stand alone examples which I think could all work well together in one project.

Therefore I have started piecing together a basic start for an MMO type game. I’ve started with the existing polymesh navigation and have implemented the socket server into it. So far all players can see each other move around the screen using the polymesh.

The next stage is to get enemies on stage and get the city generation put in place.

Like the original polymesh navigation example, this project is going to be open source and is on github

Polymesh Navigation Revisited

So a couple of years ago I created a simple polymesh navigation example in ActionScript and I started thinking about expanding it. To start with I thought I’d convert it to JavaScript and make it open source. The initial stage can be seen here and for those interested in the code, it’s on GitHub

So very simple, there’s a few polygons which are to represent rooms and joining doors. First click sets the starting point, second click defines the destination.

The main idea is to create a simplistic version of how Valve does the bot pathfinding in games like CounterStrike. Currently it simple works out the path from the polygon edges but only uses the centre points, in the future I’d need to make the path more natural and fluid in design.

Friendless

Well it’s been a busy couple of months on (yet) another new site idea. This time around it’s a social site called Friendless which will be aimed at the socially inept.

The site is being run off web sockets for real time updates and setting this up has been new territory which took quite a lot of trial and error.

It’s still in development but I’m hoping to release an invite driven closed beta shortly.

Watch this space

Projectily

Not much game development has occurred over the last month or two, this is mainly down to trying to get an ongoing site live.

Introducing Projectily, a project management site which has been in development (on & off) for the last year.  It’s still nowhere near finished but has been made live as an alpha release. This means you can create an account but there’s a whole load of features yet  to be added and quite possibly some bugs left to squish.

You may be wondering why a site would be made live in such an early stage, it’s because this way there’s reason to prioritize development on it as it’s publically accessible. It also allows people to help shape the future of the site, if  there’s any features you’d like to see on the site you can send a suggestion and it will be considered.