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Archive for December, 2012

Three against one!

December 12th, 2012 8 comments

Would you look at them, ganging up on a poor little mouse.

Well, I thought it was going to be an almost insurmountable task (based on my experience with err… another fabulous-looking game engine) but it only took me a couple of days to get the skeletal rats AI in.

Actually that includes exporting the models, their animations, their basic behavior, the whole melee attack/dealing damage system and the customizing of each enemy with drag-and-drop simplicity. The more I delve into Unity, the more I have the feeling I’m working with a tool like Maya. Anything can be done; the real challenge is in finding the simplest and therefore the fastest way of achieving it.

You have to realize that using the CryEngine it would have been impossible for me to get all that stuff in with this level of control and customizability. I used to bang into walls of sheer complexity and “catch 22” everywhere I turned. But now I can focus back on how to achieve things, rather than worrying if they can be accomplished at all.

Which is a great feeling… 😀

Categories: "Ghost of a Tale", update Tags:

Update on the transition to Unity

December 7th, 2012 4 comments

In case anyone had any doubts about it, I’ve officially decided to move the pipeline for “Ghost of a Tale” from the CryEngine onto Unity 4. It wasn’t a trivial decision by any means (after all I’m one of the most vocal CryEngine evangelists out there). As to the reason why, Unity is simply a fantastic SDK to develop games on, easy to work with and is ideal for me since I don’t have a team of TDs/programers to bail me out when I’m against a C++ wall.

As always in a transition situation like that, a lot of work is required but it’s better to just bite the bullet and get it over with. And in the process, I have actually expanded on what I previously had in the CryEngine. Here’s a WIP screenshot for you, if only to show that Unity can pack some nice visuals (and still at almost 60fps on my non-gaming video card):

 

So in just a few words, I have now:

– A fully functional camera which automatically adjusts its position so that it doesn’t go through walls. It’s also smart enough to allow thin pole-like meshes to get in-between itself and the player, as long as the player is not entirely blocked from view. In fact the camera feels a lot like what’s in the CryEngine SDK (Crytek does nicely responsive FPS cameras), with the added feature that you can adjust its distance to the player with a flick of the mouse-wheel. Which is nice.

 

– An overall tighter and much more subtle control scheme for the player character where I control absolutely everything, from transitions to custom animation parameters. And Unity’s Mecanim system is a joy to work with.

 

– A rudimentary foot IK system that adjusts the height of the feet in idle mode, depending on the surface the character stands on. I learned a lot about raycasting on that one.

– A HUD with a functional compass and a stamina-depletion system; the main character is a mouse and can optionally run really fast on all fours, so that was necessary to keep the player from zipping from one end of the level to the other.

– An item label display system that shows a name tag over any item of interest in the world, depending on the distance. That way the player knows he can interact with those. I could have never dreamed of achieving something like that with the CryEngine, since I don’t program in C++.

 

Anyway, I’ll post some more on my progress later. There are still many things I want to implement, but one big milestone will definitely be converting the enemy AI to Unity’s system…

Categories: "Ghost of a Tale", Unity, update Tags: