Koalabeast Games

Category: Features (page 1 of 2)

Periodic Progress Post – October 2017

We are retiring the Community Update that we did on reddit. It was a rollup of what we accomplished lately and what we were considering doing. We feel like being more active on the blog accomplishes communicating our updates much better. Just going to the home page of the blog and scrolling through it gives you a quick glance of what’s recently changed.

That said, we still want to communicate what we’re working on and thinking about. So we’ll still make periodic posts about that. This is one of those posts. Something to keep in mind is that we sometimes dump projects we are working, for a variety of reasons – it happens. So something you see in one of these posts may never get released.

PrivateMajor will still be operating in a community management role. On a monthly basis, I’ll be meeting with him and he’ll be distilling down what should be priorities, from the community’s perspective. If something warrants an official response from the development team, those will be included in this posts as well. So if you’d like to make sure PM sees a post, please continue to tag /u/PrivateMajor on reddit.

What have we been working on?

Platform and Framework Upgrades

We have been upgrading the technology that runs TagPro. That means the platform and frameworks that TagPro depends on. Upgrading these created a lot of breaking changes and we’ve had to address those. The payoff will be a more stable and performant product. Plus, it will unlock a lot of new language features for us to use in future code and projects we want to take on. We hope to be deploying the upgraded TagPro in the coming month.

Mod Tools

The tools the moderators use needed a big upgrade. A lot of progress has been made in a complete rewrite of them. The new tools will help moderators in their daily tasks and help keep the trolling and toxicity at a minimum in-game. We hope to have moderators testing the first versions of the new tool in the upcoming month.

Flair Stream

As part of a proof of concept for a larger project we want to take on, a flair stream was built. This will add a streaming list of flair being acquired by players to the home page of TagPro.

What are we thinking about?

Improvements to No-Script for Leagues

Chasing down cheaters is always going to be a challenge and a cat and mouse game. No-Script added some layers of protection to allow leagues to attempt and disable the use of outside scripts in league matches. We (and the leagues I think) have been pleased with the results.

That said there are concerns that some players may have defeated the protections – totally possible. We’ve looked into this and can’t give a definitive yes, but it has gotten us thinking about improvements we could make to strengthen no-script.

Single World Joiner

We’ve been putting a lot of thought into this. A single world joiner would mean no more named game servers. Instead you’ll just go to tagpro.gg, and hit play now. It will find other people with similar ping and experience level and put you in a game on a hidden game server.

This would solve some problems. It would solve the “everyone is on radius” problem and more players would play more games with an optimal ping. Next it could solve the newbie problem by given us the opportunity to group new players with other new players. More long term, we could consider separate joiners for events and maybe event game modes.

Full disclosure: This is a major rearchitecture of TagPro works. It’s going to be a lot of work, a lot of refactoring and a lot of new code. It’s one of the reasons we decided to do the platform upgrades mentioned above. If we tackle this, and it’s highly likely that we will, you can expect it to dominate a large portion of the development time.

Bumper Tiles

Basically a tile that a player could bounce off of. We’ve tested it as a round element and it was pretty hard to use in a consistent way. There may be more potential in a square form factor.

Discuss on Reddit

Graphics Upgrade and Yellow Tiles

We rolled out two changes:

Pixi.js Upgrade

We’ve upgrade Pixi.js to its latest version, which is the WebGL graphics engine we use. This will provide greater stability and performance. It is possible this could break some addons or userscripts. We warned of this a few weeks ago and suggested authors update their code if needed. If you are suddenly having issues with TagPro and use TagPro addons, disable them to figure out which one needs updating and find a new version.

Yellow Speed Tiles

We previously posted about Yellow Speed Tiles coming to TagPro. This has been deployed. We’ve also upgraded all the maps, built-in texture packs and some of the common map editors. If you are suddenly missing tiles in-game, you are likely using a custom texture pack and will need to get an updated version from the author. Or switch to a built-in texture pack.

Discuss on Reddit

Yellow Team Tiles Are Coming!

UPDATE: Yellow tiles are deployed. Enjoy!

In the coming days, we will turn on yellow team tiles. Yellow team tiles will give a speed boost to both teams. We are going to update all maps that used a checkered strategy to instead use yellow team tiles. We have updated all the built-in texture packs with a yellow team tile. This should just work for most players. However, if you are using a non-standard texture pack, you will need to update your own tiles.png with a yellow team tile or obtain a new file from the author.

We will also be updating the unfortunate-maps map editor with the ability to use yellow tiles. Any downstream forks of the map editor should merge in these changes ASAP. NewCompte has already made some Pull Request to popular forks with the change.

Discuss on Reddit

Jimmy is back! TagPro Halloween event starts on Friday.

UPDATE: The event is live!

The classic Halloween event is back this Friday. You’ll be disarmed this time around – no pumpkins to throw. But Jimmy is back with a vengeance. He’s armed his zombies with even more stealth. Survivors can no longer see Zombies through walls!

Spawning?

Like past events, once the event begins on Friday, it will spawn the first 15 mins of every hour. It will spawn 5 mins early on Pi, Sphere, Origin and Orbit.

Flair?

Yes, there will be new flair to obtain! Winning a match as a zombie gives you a chance to find Candy Corn. Winning as a survivor results in a Bat. Winning as the Sole Survivor earns you a Jack!

Why not something totally new?

I did make a whole new event but – it wasn’t that fun. They all can’t be insta-winners. So we decided instead of forcing it on a tight deadline, we’d play a classic-mode (with a twist) that most everyone has loved.

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Two TagPro Next Videos!

As a reminder: Nothing is set in stone! Let us know what you think. The gate graphics are just mocks right now.

Some things you’ll notice: Many tweaks and physic changes – but still quite a bit different than classic. The flair on the pucks. The scoring system is a win-by-three system. We have some special effects going on. We are beginning to implement the announcer: FLACCID GRAB! We implemented the auto-panning when respawning due to the popular classic userscript. We are no longer hiding spawning-players from opponents that have TagPro, instead players will spawn with 1 second of untaggable status.

LuckySpammer makes quick work of the competition playing TagPro Next

Long Game of TagPro Next on GeoKoala!

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What the Puck?!? 12 Minutes of Alpha 1 Gameplay

Alpha 1 is getting close! We tested the current build last night with the moderators and were happy with the results. Although there are still some issues to work out.

You’ll notice we are pucks instead of balls in this build. This is something we are seriously considering changing in the next game. Physics-wise, we’ve always been pucks and when you play next, you feel like an air-hockey puck. If you listen closely, you can hear the pucks tapping each other and walls.

The lightning bolt on the pucks is a mock idea of “stickers”. The idea is that stickers can be acquired and arranged on your puck however you like. We’d ensure that X% of the puck color stays visible to ensure team identification. We think this would give players are lot of fun individuality without becoming distracting

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Game Play Screen Shot and Alpha Update

screen

We took some time to play test the client with some of the TagPro moderators today. In this shot you can see the system of random names that will likely take the place of the Some Ball system. You can also see the word bubble indicating who is HONKING. Yeah, I gave in.

We are working hard towards a first Alpha. This initial alpha will be bare bones and small. The goal will be general testing of the client and to get feedback from the users concerning the movement changes. We’re shooting for roughly a month from now but we’ll keep everyone in the loop if that changes.

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Walls and the Bombs That Don’t Blast Through Them

It’s taken a while to nail down the wall art. We wanted them to be visually detailed (complete with shadows) but still have a simple method for texture pack artists to override the look. We’ve met that goal and now feel comfortable showing the concept art for walls:

Big Time Concept Art

This is concept art. Not all of the tiles represent their final form – but the walls are very close to their final look. Small details like the yellow striped warning panels and the air vents will be positioned by map designers. We plan to have more of these subtle visual modifications that help map designers spruce up levels.

The button and bomb are near finished. As well as some wiring that will optionally run along the floor visually indicating what buttons control. The bomb’s respawn animation will feature the doors quickly opening, and then bomb rising out and arming itself. The button you see featured in the art has a timer attached to it for delayed actions – this is something we are considering doing.

Right now, bombs can’t effect players through walls. This is a pretty interesting change from TagPro Classic. It will be fun to see how this plays out in map designs and play testing. However sometimes map designers want a bomb that can only be detonated remotely and not by touch. In classic, we often would put those bombs behind walls. In TagPro Next, we are considering making another version of the bomb that is surrounded in some kind of impassible wiring so the bomb can’t be touched or passed through when deactivated. Or maybe there is a tile that is impassable like a wall but blasts can pass through.

Here is a video showing some of the early bomb mechanics:

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