For the last day or so, my main focus has been on cleaning up artwork, fixing/replacing/adding sound effects, and generally making the game presentable. I’ve also fixed a couple of bugs and done some other little stuff here and there. Today I’m working to finish this process, and later I should have a demonstration level ready to go. I’ll try to post a video tonight showing off what’s currently in the game. After all this presentation stuff is dealt with, I plan on implementing traps :-)

A new player sprite, among other things

[Originally posted September 27th, 2010]

Despite the fact that it has been almost a week since my last dev journal, work has continued unabated. Last week I finished modifying the artwork to fit the new style, and created a new player sprite. I also filled in most of the missing player animations.

I finished up doors/triggers, and fixed up moving platform movement. I also fixed a bug with world map collision. There were a few little updates here and there, but on Friday I began working on getting VBOs (vertex buffer objects) implemented for the hardware renderer. In layman’s terms, I was hoping to greatly enhance rendering performance when using hardware rendering. After working on this for hours on Friday, as well as a little bit over the weekend, and hours more today, I finally got them working and optimized. Unfortunately, I found that VBOs actually caused a slight decrease in performance. I spent some more time playing around with them, but ultimately it looks like the rendering method I was using before will work better.

So, I spent the past hour or so reverting all of the necessary code. It should be mentioned that the VBO stuff was not a total loss, as I did come across a couple of nice optimizations I could do while working on it.

I just now rewrote the way the renderer accesses the dimensions of an image to be rendered, which cleaned up a lot of code nicely.

I’m calling it quits for now, although I will probably look at some other ways to optimize rendering tonight. Tomorrow, I will be resuming regular work.

Cross-platform, ho!

[Originally posted September 21st, 2010]

I finished fixing up the new hardware renderer code, and got the screenshot function working again. I also fixed a worldmap collision bug.

With the renderer finished, the game is now platform-independent, so I hope to eventually release the game on Windows, Linux and Mac.

I tested the game on several different OS’s, just to see how it performs. On an emulated Windows 98 SE (via VirtualBox), it ran pretty decently in software mode (hardware mode blows up). In Linux, I tested it in Wine, and found that it ran quite well, but only in hardware mode. Software mode performed horribly. Then, I moved on to the main event, and got the game to compile natively in Linux (Opensuse 11.3). It runs quite well natively, so I’m thinking a cross-platform release is a real possibility.

Tonight, I decided to work on some level tiles, and I decided to throw out the slanted look I had been planning on, as it was going to delay the game far too much. I’m currently the game’s sole artist, and art is not exactly my forte, so anything that reduces art requirements is a Good Thing.

Here’s a screenshot of the slanted look that I was working on.

For a good look at the current direction I’m going, check out this video.

Platformer lighting

[Originally posted September 21st, 2010]

So, originally I wanted to use a somewhat fancy (from a technical standpoint) lighting system in Hubert’s Island, in which each tile had its own lighting value. You can see a video demonstrating this here. Ultimately, this just doesn’t look good, however. It was actually Aneissa who convinced me to let it go, as it was fun to write the code for, and a shame to just cut. Ah well, it was an hour well spent anyway.

A simple sprite-based lighting system has replaced the tile-based lighting, and you can see that in action here.

What do you guys think?

First dev journal

[Originally posted September 18th, 2010]

So, this is the first development journal for Hubert’s Island (somewhat tentative title, but I’ll probably stick with it). In these journals, I will document the development progress of the game, talk about different coding stuff, and generally keep everyone informed on the status of the game. Without further ado, here’s the first little dev journal:

Today, I finished up doors, and made the AI aware of those.

I optimized AI detection of walls, and did a few other minor things.

I also wrote a new image loading function for the hardware renderer, so it no longer requires an additional external library. The benefit of this change should be complete platform independence of the game’s code and libraries, as the library I removed was compiled using VC++ and I couldn’t get it to compile myself (and I worked on it for HOURS!).

To test out this hypothesis, I tried running the game on an emulated Windows 98, where it previously crashed immediately upon running, with some Microsoft-y error. Today, the game loaded up and ran quite well, and that was really exciting to see! I’m using Virtual Box, and as far as I can tell, Win98 has full access to one core of my CPU, so that might explain the over-100 fps I was getting.

But regardless, the system requirements of the game should be lower than I originally thought they would be.

After all of the work on the game, I worked on the site a little more, and all of the associated Cheese and Bacon accounts (Twitter, YouTube, etc). Then, I completely broke the site while trying to add a mod linking WordPress and phpBB together. Whoops. Anyway, I just fixed that, so everything should be cool again.

Dev journals moved to blog

Until today, dev journals were being posted on the forums. However, today I decided to migrate dev journals to a blog format, so updates can now be posted directly on the Hubert’s Island page. This should also make following and sharing posts easier than before.

Website Launched

This is the official site for Cheese and Bacon Games, an up-and-coming indie game developer. Our current (and first) project is an as-yet-untitled platformer for the PC.

So, the site is online, and right now I’m working on getting everything up (forums, game page, etc). Stay tuned for more news shortly.