Koalabeast Games

Category: Progress (page 2 of 3)

Ball Faces? Bomb Respawn Animation and 45 Degree Walls

We’ve made some strides in some of the backend work. The UDP implementation is going well and we hope to be testing it soon in a standalone client. As a reminder, UDP is a different network protocol than what your web browser uses (TCP). Using it in the standalone client will result in less perceivable lag than playing in a web browser.

While it’s not polished yet, we do have a rough draft of the bombs respawning:

respawning bombs

We’ve also introduced 45 degree walls into the engine, however we still don’t have the walls rendering with final graphics. Hopefully we’ll have that wrapped up next week:

45-degree

Community Feedback Request: Do you want faces on the balls?

We want the community’s feedback concerning faces on the ball. I myself use the googly-eyes addon when playing TagPro and love it. It gives the balls a little personality. A newer addon was posted to the subreddit recently that was well received. And it just so happens our artist sketched some face concept art for TagPro Next couple of weeks ago:

faces

If we implemented faces, they would likely serve a revenue model for us. So along with being able to earn new eyes, mouths and facial hair (to mix and match), we’d have some that could only be bought. Since it would be part of the revenue model, it’s unlikely this would be a feature that you could turn off. Again, this isn’t something that is currently planned; we want to know what the community thinks and we’ll go from there – so let us know:

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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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The Spike Does Not Move

spikes

This week we worked on the design for the spikes. We all wanted a style that was similar to classic  that would fit in perfectly to our new design. The screw head for each spike is oriented a bit differently to give each of them some sugar.  In other news, this week viewport scaling and mousevent code has been added to the map editor. The client/server branch has been re-factored , and a neat data serialization portion added.

 

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Speed Boosts Graphics, Client/Server and Material UI

The tooling for the map editor is coming along, hopefully we have something to show in a couple of weeks. On the same note, progress for the overall user interface is happening. You can expect the new user interface to work more like an application and less like a web page. Right now, it’s looking like we are going to use a Material UI framework for the user interface. This will provide us a smooth and simple UI that will scale well to smaller screens if needed.

We have speed boosts graphics! In TagPro Next speed boosts will be spinning discs that hurl a player when touched – we hope you like them. We also have the very beginnings of the client/server communication working. You can see both the speed boosts and the client/server in action in this week’s video:

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UDP, Floors, Parallax Scrolling and Live Map Editing

screen01

We have some new graphics to show off. The basic floor tile and background are complete. The floor tiles have subtle differences instead of being completely uniform – we really like the end result. The overall theme of TagPro Next will be a technical one, thus the circuit board background. It’s likely we’ll have some subtle animations included in the background. Parallax scrolling is also implemented for the background which you can see in the video below.

We’ve begun working on live map editing. The goal is that the map editor will be implemented within a special TagPro game. So you’ll launch yourself into a game to create TagPro maps. This will allow you to roll around and test your maps while creating them. We are even planning on allowing you to invite your friends to your map editing sessions to assist you. Check it out in the video below.

We’ve made some strides in the UDP library. For those less technical, UDP is a different method of making computer talks with each other. For gaming purposes, switching to it should result in less noticeable lag. We’ve opted to write our own library for ordering and guaranteeing UDP messages – we’ll likely open source it.

It has been pointed out that the parallax scrolling in the previous video was wrong. The background was moving faster than the foreground. It’s been fixed here and looks a lot better.

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New Koalabeast Logo and Engine Progress

First, join us in welcoming the new Koalabeast. As our new company logo, you’ll be seeing more of this devious little jerk.

New Koalabeast Logo

More progress has been made on the prototype engine. A lot of it under the hood while refactoring the Pixi.js rendering code. We did add the flag/base to the engine and were really pleased how such a small thing breathed life into the game. We’ve also began adding controls to the engine so that we can easily tweak the physics of the game while playing. You’ll also notice the camera is locked to the player now.

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TagPro Next Status: Artist, Flags, Joiner and Engine

TagPro Next has an artist! We’re really excited to be moving forward with Sergey Basov as the artist for the new TagPro. Sergey is an experienced game artist who has worked on assets for Game of Bombs – A great web game that you should check out. Here Sergey’s first draft of the new flag and base for TagPro Next:

TagPro Next Flags

The first iteration of the new joiner is complete and code reviewed. It’s looking awesome and will really allow us some flexibility on how we join players to games. For example players will be able to specify if they’d like to play in casual games or stat games – and which game modes they’d like to participate in. There is still plenty to do on the joiner, but it’s coming along nicely.

A lot of progress has been made on the prototype game engine. So much so that it will likely become the foundation of the new engine. We’ll be putting some work into adding a UI that will let us easily adjust movement and physics settings, so we can find the perfect feel for TagPro Next. Here is a video of LuckySpammer playing around in it:

Just a reminder, we don’t post all blog update to /r/TagPro – just the most important ones. However we do post all updates to /r/Koalabeast.

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TagPro Next Status – 2015-05-10

Over the week we worked with three artist on a single asset: the flag. It’s going really well and it’s a lot of fun watching the artists go from concept to polished asset. By next week, we should have the TagPro Next artist selected!

The author of another web game approached us over working together going forward. Not necessarily directly on each other’s products, but in more of a partnership. It’s likely the two teams will meet soon to discuss further.

We are developing a scaled-down prototype engine for experimenting the new “feel” of TagPro. It will allow us to easily test things like friction, acceleration, max speeds, boosts, ect. It’s also testing the normalized movement – being that moving diagonally will no longer allow you to move faster. It’s possible in the future we will produce a build of the prototype with the values we decide on for community feedback.

AMorpork plans to produce a blog entry the coming week on our inter-process communication layer for TagPro Next: Intercom. It’s fairly unique and a piece we plan on open sourcing.

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