Sunday, 8 January 2017

New months resolution

Since it's the beginning of a new era, where I plan to switch my development focus for the next three years, I might try to monitor my progress more frequently. Thus I wondered why we supposedly make a new years resolution where it takes a whole year to realize we have failed instead of having smaller goals each month. Then I can review what happened the month that passed and form accordingly my plans for the next one.

I am also thinking of weekly themes, like first week focused on a specific project, another week in something else, maybe having side quests for secondary things I want to work with, unless I seem to like to work on the same thing for more weeks. Although that might be a lame idea since everyday there are forces that tell me what I prefer to do and most of the times nothing productive.

I don't know, I will play accordingly, try to set up a plan, imagine what I'd like to do in short periods, also be weary of longer periods, for example I don't want to reach April and having not even started on specific things. For example, I will lay down a plan for the CPC wolfenstein project, which I'd wish I can finish a game by this year. So,. if I am at the early stage of still tinkering with the engine and nothing else during summer, I might know it's not good. Time passes like that. Something happens that makes you postpone things, then it goes September, November, then you say let's start again by next year. There are few checkpoints, like events where I stop for a while and rewind, for example eastern, or some time in February where I have planned something that will take me off for a week, things that can disrupt the working flow and then another month have passed without doing much. I will be weary of these events and plan to finish things before. April before eastern would be essential to having finished a set of goals for the wolfenstein CPC so that I can work later on the game itself.

As for this month, I just came back from holidays, so one week is lost. During holidays I fixed a bug in the quinine engine but mostly started working on a Doom level for two days (that's another plan to finish a Doom megawad by gradually speed mapping, easy if I didn't have other projects to work in parallel). Now I have three weeks. It will be mostly a test to see how to plan things but maybe I'll work on some easy code for gamedev plans (I am not saying anything, just a small thing we might want to port). The rest will be added later (youtube video making, continue with CPC wolfenstein, side projects coding, maybe one or less of that). I need to find a process.

Or as I like to say, twelve disappointments per year.

Tuesday, 20 December 2016

Adventopolis 1.#INF - I am bored

So, that's it. The experiment is over. I don't plan to do any more entries of this. What is done is done. It helped me a bit at some moments to work on two things, the 2d software rendered framework that will be used for 2d PC/handheld games in the future (and I tested a bit how practical it is with the unfinished Ludum Dare entry and know what works and what to change/improve) and some more work on the CPC wolfenstein, mainly the editor and the zooming sprites. And that's good. But it was kinda forced to have to work each evening just to post an update. And I got tired and I proved what I wanted to.

The last few days before xmas are coming. At 22 I'll be flying back to Greece for holidays. Then I'll come back next year with new plans and dreams. I am already thinking some new years resolutions or better call them new months resolution and making a plan to allow me finish early enough some of the things I want to proceed. For example, if I procrastinate too much with things, if I see myself still fighting with the technical things of the wolfenstein engine in August, then it get go September, October and I will be like, fuck it, I am finishing this next year. But maybe I can set up monthly goals and see how it progress, or checkpoints like moments where there will be stop in flow, like for example eastern in April where I might travel back to Greece again as usually (I always go three times on Xmas, Eastern and some period in the Summer to see friends and family) and will cut the creative flow for 1-2 weeks and then coming back I need time to rewind. So, I could have a plan of what I'd wish to finish by that time. And maybe watch out every week or month for what I wanted to finish and what happened.

Or maybe focus more on setting me in the mentality of procrastinating less. I believe 2017 will be the year I should break this and get into new stuff that need the focus, need the change in mentality to achieve what I want.

Anyway, merry xmas and a happy new year if I don't see you in another post here!

Saturday, 17 December 2016

Adventopolis #17 - the zoom must go on

I didn't work all day this Saturday. I went out to the city and then out again to meet a friend. And that's ok, didn't plan to bruteforce this weekend anyway. I only came back in the evening, rested for a while and then decided I have to code something just to write this (slight motivator to code at least one hour per day, interesting, but not something I would like to do in such fashion all the time).

I decided to test some more on the zooming on CPC wolfenstein and see how much it takes to sort of position a sprite and zoom according to the distance to the player. But of course I made a bad mockery with 1D distances just to see it. I will need real sqrt on CPC unless I can think of another way, but now it's doing a fake thing just to see and imagine how it would feel like. Also, no real positiong from 3D to 2D yet and no clipping at all. I even made a video about it.

Other than that, I am thinking tomorrow again of a youtube video I wanted to do criticising level design of a specific FPS and I might try to bruteforce it in the morning so that I don't end up at night and feel like doing nothing. And then I was playing again with an idea I have, which I don't remember if I mentioned yesterday and I am too lazy to check, for speed coding and maybe some youtube vid/timelapse. Also another way to maybe motivate me to try specific stuff I postpone. Select something you wanted to code and try to code it fast, either something you have coded before or a new effect you never made before. It's like the speedmapping on Doom where they try to make a map in 30 minutes for example (I might try to do one of these too and maybe timelapse it :).

Anyway I don't know how it will be tomorrow and if I'll end doing something. Then I'll have something like 4 days or less inside the weekend. Maybe my last wish was to release something for the Sam? Not sure now though, old lousy assembly code which I could fix or maybe I'll release something as is. I even have to bother switching on my Sam and see how I will transfer the thing I'll be doing to check if it works.

Friday, 16 December 2016

Adventopolis #16 - time before the second fail

Ok, it's 15 minutes before midnight, I was about to miss the next post. Yesterdays post was forgotten, it was over 2:00 after midnight but it's ok, I had to do something else.

Little things now, it's Friday and I just finished the unification of the Wolfenstein FPS and also tried sort of press Space to fire projectile zooming blue fireball. It's blue for now because I am trying on red walls texture. Of course it just zooms at the center, no real positioning yet.

I have another idea for speed coding. Might try it at some point.

p.s. I already got bored of this, but I am gonna continue it till the end..
p.p.s. I cheated and change the date of yesterday's post. I just wanted them to line up every day in the list.

Thursday, 15 December 2016

Adventopolis #15.5 - First Fail

Ok, I was very busy with something else I had to do outside of coding, then I checked the time and I am sleepy as fuck too.

Wednesday, 14 December 2016

Adventopolis #14 - and the bat is in!

Things going well, although I am coding for 1+ hour, my new plan is waste time before hand and code something at ten. Hehe,. it short of works, but might change strategy in the future if I want to do more. Or maybe it's an ok strategy to motivate me to work on something instead of nothing. This night's task was to transfer the two frame of the bat enemy sprite (no joke about Batman Group :) from sigh, see how it looks (it kinda blends weirdly with black or dark blue, sigh's sprite was black, I changed it to blue, maybe try some gray or something). I also added a sprite struct in the CPC code, so that I have different sprites, both the fireball and bat frames and select which to render. It used to be a function that read a single global spr array in the past, just for testing. Now it's ready to render many different sprites of different width/height. I am still rendering in the center, so I need to next solve real x,y,z position to x,y and zoom on the screen. And maybe optimize the speed.

I am getting good with screenshots in these posts (although don't expect it daily). But when I finish a proper move around level, meet static bats flapping their wings in real 3d and shoot fireballs, maybe clip and of course zoom rewritten in assembly for fast speed, it will be proper for a youtube progress preview. That's all I want to do (this year? Don't know). Then I am at the next stage of the engine/game. Where I have to go back to solve, raycaster problems/speed improvements, and then rewrite this big thing in assembly. And call it a day. And figure out where to go next (I might have to check my remaining memory, I hit something again by adding all three sprites but I am not sure). Then what remains is the texture editor/special effects with column offsets (torch animations, sliding doors (that will need also transparency)). It will at some point feel more complete and ready to start coding the gameplay. Lot's of small and bigger things I hope to reach a point where it doesn't feel scary.

Tuesday, 13 December 2016

Adventopolis #13 - finally a screenshot

I did more than I thought, most of it was easy, finishing the touches on the CPC sprite editor for wolfenstein, but also the save/load to binary and C/asm source (taken from the same on map). I felt I shouldn't do a 10 minutes work looking 30 minutes at the ceiling for this, so I coded fast and it oh went so well, I even painted a simple fireball and tested it on the lousy slow C zoom routine on the engine. Here is a screenshot.

Little fireball is coming on me, I attack with my dagger,.. or nothing like this happens anyway. It's just a zoom animation from 1x to 4x. At 1x it's ok at 3x/4x it slow down everything. Of course that's the routine I have to write in assembly and I know now how (and it will be quite faster and allow more zooming sprites at the same time).

So, maybe tomorrow I can continue with some other things on the same project. I was initially thinking to transfer also the bat two sprite animation I got from our graphician, but maybe it's not necessary now. Unless I want to animate two frames and place it somewhere on the map and let me approach it. Right now the zoom routine can take x,y screen position and zooming factor. It might even do some clipping iirc, not sure. But what it does not do is take real x,y,z, check visibility with player camera and transform to x,y and zoom, maybe even clip with walls. I'd like to think how to do it efficiently or at least and easy brute force just to see it, just to move near a sprite in the real 3d world. Or alternatively I could optimize the sprite routine with the assembly I have in mind. Or make the player shoot those fireballs by pressing fire, preferably in the UnifiedFPS version I still haven't finished unifying.

I hope tomorrow I am similarly motivated.