Last friday our teachers swung by to pay us a visit and check up on our project. Actually, we invited them. We had prepared a demo of the project in it’s current state and thought it was time to show off our work. Of course, the game in it’s current state is a pre-alpha and not very heavy on the graphics side. The main point was to demo the group behaviour of the rioters and how two groups interact when crossing eachother’s path, layed out on a very simple map.
We got the feeling we made a good impression. Our programming teacher, Stefan, was mainly concerned with the delay time of the potential fields of rioters in the game. The potential fields are like invisible magnetic fields that makes rioters cling together in a group or move away from police units and other threats. These are updated in realtime with a delay of 14ms as of now. This is an optimization issue that we will deal with in time.
We also received a bunch of questions and suggestions from our project managing teacher, Torbjörn. As always he was very interested in and inquisitive about our organisation within the group. He raised the important issue that we should focus on locking down ideas and implementations as soon as we’re able to, and linger as little as possible on multiple choices of technical baselines (for example: choosing between two types of animation techniques).
We have quite a lot of zones containing ideas and work tasks for the game – our wiki, scrum board, idea board, user stories, agreements contained within specific group responsibilities and individual visions of the game. Even though we already have a rather tight work flow, Torbjörn wanted us to streamline it further and narrow everything down. It’s quite refreshing to get input like that and I think he pushed us in the right direction.
We received the question of how we’re going to make the rioters look varied and unique, which is always an issue in games containing large groups of individuals. We don’t want rioters looking like clones. Our solution for this is to have a base set of different human models, textures and accessories (for rioters to wear or hold on to), which we will tint with various colors to create variation in their visuals.
In general the teachers seemed to be happy with our progress, and we’re happy too. We’re on track and organized. Basic gameplay interaction is due for implementation in the weeks to come on the programming side, and on the art side we’re going to start creating content such as level design, level concept art, 3D models of entities in the game and mocapping. We’ve come far, but there’s still a long way to go.
– Kim (Technical Artist)