Calendar February 22, 2011 18:14

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At Beta

So today is the day that we are suppose to be at Beta. And we are, sort of.

The tech guys say that there is still a few things that need to be tweaked (ex: the capital ship ai). So at this point we are really close, but not really there. But the game is playable at this moment. Some of the stuff might not be there, but it feels like a game now.

Rodger played the game, and he was very happy with how far we have come in just a few weeks. At the beginning of the semester, they actually wanted to cut our game because they didn't think that we could actually take what we had at the end of last semester and turn it into a game.

I also got to play our game for the first time today. I've been able to see some of the tech guys play it before, but never by myself. It felt really cool to actually see it with my own eyes.

Over this last weekend, I worked on a few asteroids to make them look just right. I was trying to add a normal map to each so that we could get some detail, but James told me to not worry about that. That the asteroids aren't really going to be all that important so just do a color texture and thats it.

So I've managed to complete two asteroids, and I'm currently working on another one. Since my Photoshop skills aren't that good, I've had to so the textures using Mudbox. It took me a while to get the hang of it, but I think I'm doing a better job now.

Now that I have Maya on my laptop, I'll see if I actually have time to get around to posting renders of all the work that I've done.

That's all, thanks for reading.

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Calendar February 18, 2011 00:20

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More Asteroids

Last class time, Charlie told me of a more efficient way to make asteroids within Maya. So I'm in the process of making different kinds of asteroids for the game. They are going to be different size and shape.

They aren't quite ready yet, so I'm still experimenting with different things in the meantime.

I finally managed to install Maya on my laptop after a week of reformatting my laptop and reinstalling a bunch of stuff. So now I will finally can do a lot more work without being at school.

I couldn't get to class today, but from what I hear there wasn't much to do today anyways.

Charlie told me afterwards that all they did was to go to L130 to see how the game is progressing. Apparently it's looking really good and we should be at Beta by Tuesday.

I'm so excited!

That's all, thanks for reading.

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Calendar February 15, 2011 18:21

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Close To Beta

So we have till the end of this week to finish our game because we need to start Beta testing next week.

Yesterday I finished the first fighter that I made at the beginning of last semester. I tweaked a few things, but overall it looks the same. I also attached a few guns to the ship along with a few locators.

I also made an asteroid. I tried to make one in Maya, but I couldn't get it to look right. So I made it with 3ds Max and exported it in fbx format. Then I brought it into Maya to edit it. And then I ran into a problem.

3ds Max had made the model using only triangles, so I had to spend between 1 and 2 hours deleting edges to make everything quads.

It looks great now, but it's probably too high of a resolution. I don't know if I'll have to make it again or not.

During class, we didn't really do much. We did talk about another of the games that is also in the process of going into beta. But I won't go into that.

We mainly talked about what needs to be done to get to full beta.

In the art side of stuff, we need to finish a few things. We need to tweak some ships, make a tone more asteroids. And some other last minute stuff.

While on the note of asteroids, Charlie told me of a way that is much more effective at creating asteroids than what I did. We are trying to get them to look good, but at the same time stay as low poly as possible. Charlie wants me to stay below 200 faces at all possible.

I will give it a try tomorrow night while I'm in the lab, and see how that goes.

That's it, thanks for reading.

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Calendar February 10, 2011 21:21

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Capital Ship Done

So I finally finished the capital ship that I've been working on for almost 2 weeks.

I emailed the file to Charlie and all I have to do is add a little more geometry since the edges need to be more rounded.

I will try to get the extra geometry in today. If not, then this weekend for sure.

Today, we had to bring our game to class to have Roger play it and critique what we have so far.

Today was the first time that I got to look at our game since the day that we had our "play date". I have to say that it's looking really cool. The models that Jeremy has textured for us are looking great. The game still needs a few tweaks, but overall is looking great.

For this next week, we have to build more enemy fighters, different types of asteroids, different models for the pods, and I can't remember what else.

I will be working in a few things. That's it for now, thanks for reading.

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Calendar February 8, 2011 16:48

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Name Lock Down

So before I get to the name of the name of the game that was decided on, I'm going to first write about what I've been working on.

So last week, I was working on a full size capital ship. But I didn't  like the way that it was looking. So I decided to start over from scratch. This is one is looking a lot better in my opinion, and now all I'm waiting on is for Brandon and Charlie to take a look at the file before I keep working on it.

For class today, we had to bring three names that we liked for our game. Then Bob, Roger, & the class gave us some feedback on each. After everything was done, we decided that our name will be:

The Last Pod Fighter

We might change it to just Pod Fighter or something like that.

Thats it, thanks for reading.

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Calendar February 3, 2011 18:51

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Still Working on Capital Ship

So I've had a lot of stuff due in other classes in the last 3 days, so I haven't had that much time to work on the capital ship (or enough sleep) so this is the first time that I haven't been able to finish a task on time. :(

I will get to work this weekend and have it done by Tuesday at the latest.

Today in class we talked mostly about the importance of a name for our game. Rodger pointed out that we don't have the time or money to come up with a brand for our game. So the name for the game is something that is going to be really important when it comes to publishing it.

The name has to be descriptive enough that people will know what the game is just by looking at the title, but not too long either or random just because we want it to sound cool. Rodger gave an example of calling a game "Eclipsia." That name does nothing for the game, or any game for that matter.

The group task is to come up with three really good possible game titles by Tuesday, for that is when we have to lock in our game name. We have a few good names already, but we will find out for sure on Tuesday.

That's it, thanks for reading.

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Calendar February 1, 2011 19:58

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Working On Capital Ship

So my task for this sprint is to work on a full size capital ship. I started working on it, but it's harder than I thought it would be.

Usually I look up pictures from different types of ship on Google, and then try to get bits and pieces from each to come up with a new design. But this time I don't think it's working.

I've noticed that most of the capital ships that I've found on the internet are all either really pointy or really round. I started to work on something resembling the front of this ship for now.

I sent the file to Brandon and Charlie to see if either one of them had any better ideas.

I will finish the capital ship by next class time so that Charlie can work on the UVs.

While in class, we talked a little about the assets and how we are going to use them in the game. Since Brandon is still improving my space station and is probably going to be the model with the highest poly count, we were all talking about how it was going to be used in a boss fight where it's the only capital ship and will spawn the occasional enemy fighter.

That's it, thanks for reading.

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Calendar January 28, 2011 00:55

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Bomber Ship Done

So last time I was absent from class and I didn't get that much stuff done on Tuesday. But yesterday (Wednesday) I managed to get the bomber ship that was assigned to me.

I gave it to Charlie to look it over, and do any modifications as he sees fit. Then he will do the UVs for it. And I'll post some renders over the weekend if I don't forget.

Also, I don't remember if I've posted this already (and I'm too lazy to check right now) but we are actually going to use the space station that I build as a capital ship. So I didn't really know that when I was modeling it, so I build it to be more of a prop that something that was actually going to be in the game.

At the moment, Brandon is redesigning some of the parts of my space station so that we can mount some turrets on it. Hes also trying to make it look more capital ship "like". And from what I saw today, its turning out better than what I had done at the beginning.

For my next assignment, I have to create a full size capital ship. This one is probably going to be the toughest thing that I've had to do so far. I'm not sure how its going to end up, because I don't really plan ahead. I just sit down and start modeling until I model something that I like. For this next design, I have to keep in mind that we are going to also be mounting turrets on the capital ship, so I'll have to be a little careful with the design.

Last thing I want to add, today the art team had a little chat and we came to one conclusion. We didn't really communicate when I was building the space station, so right now a lot of rework has to be put into the model. This could've been avoided if we communicated more often. So what I'm going to do, is that every time I'm done with one little "burst" of modeling, I'm going to email the file to both Brandon and Charlie to have them take a look at it. This way, there will be more input from everyone on how a certain model should look and we won't have to do what we are doing with the space station again.

That's it for today, thanks for reading.

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Calendar January 25, 2011 20:30

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Sick Day

So today I'm was feeling a bit sick and I couldn't make it to class. My first time missing class, including last semester. Hopefully it doesn't affect my grade too much.

Anyways, I emailed everyone to let them know the status of what I'm working on. So here is what I told them.

My current task include modeling a bomber class ship, which is about 50% done. It might need some minor tweaking, but not too much hopefully. Also, I had finished modeling the new space station last week. So over the weekend I had to layout the UVs and let me just say that its a nightmare. So I talked to Charlie later in the day, and he agreed to do the UVs for me.

Also, I think that we are going to stick to a pipeline workflow from now. I will keep doing models, and Charlie will do the UVs. I will try to do the UVs when I can, and let Charlie takeover when it gets too overwhelming.

That's it for me, thanks for reading.

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Calendar January 21, 2011 01:44

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End of First Sprint

So today is the end of our first sprint for the semester. I can't say that I got too much work done, but at least I'm trying. :P

The one thing that I would like to mention that I actually started to work on my space station again. I didn't really like that way that the other one looks, so I decided to hunt down pictures of other space stations and I found a few that I really liked.

So what I did is that I kept my original design, but I'm actually expanding it. My original design was kind of lame, so now I'm making look something more like this. It's not exactly the same, but I liked the way that it looks so I'm going to shoot for something similar.

Also, I volunteered to review one game this sprint. This is so that it looks like we are active in the Indie Community, so when the time comes to submit our game we won't be turned down just because we didn't contribute enough.

I haven't gotten any of those two things done, so I'll post some renders when I'm done with the new space station and I'll post my review when I'm done with it tomorrow night.

Also, for my next sprint I'll have to work on making a mid size bomber type ship. So far, most of the ships that I've made have been sort of "disc shaped", but this next one has to look a little more narrow and long.

One more thing, last time was our presentation to the Master students. I wasn't there because I had a class at the exact same time that we had to do the presentation, but it from what I heard I think it went ok. We got a lot of good feedback which will ultimately make our game that much better. Based on what we got from the survey forms that James & Brandon collected, we will do some adjustments to the game to get it polished.

Thanks for reading.

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Calendar January 18, 2011 16:21

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Presentation Tonight

So we are suppose to present our game to the Master students tonight to show how far we've gone in the development of our game. Everyone in the group really worked hard this weekend to have something better to present, since we got a lot of good feedback from our "play day."

My main task this weekend was to get a mid size enemy ship modeled and UVed. I managed to get something done, but I didn't get a chance to do the UVs for it. So Charlie will be able to take care of that for me.

Here are a few renders of the ship that I modeled:

I used the Corellian Corvette as inspiration for the front of the ship and then I used the wings from the ship that Charlie created not too long ago. Then I added the wings on the top since it looked a little too plain. And finally, rocket boosters on the back of the ship. Like I said, Charlie will UV it.

We didn't really do much in class today. We got a little time to work on our stuff and to get organized for the presentation tonight. I'm not going to be able to go to the presentation because I have a class at that time. I was really looking forward to going, but maybe next time (if there is a next time).

Now I'm just waiting for my next assignment. Thanks for reading.

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Calendar January 13, 2011 20:37

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New Scrum Master

So today was our "game day", this is where we got to play the games of the other teams and give them some feedback.

I didn't play any of the other games, but it looked like it was a good experience for everyone. This gave us a chance to see how the other groups are doing, and maybe even get ideas from testing the games.

We did get a lot of good feedback for our game, mainly saying that our controls are too confusing and we need to work a lot on game balancing because it is really hard to kill the enemies. A lot of people also complained about the radar, so I don't know what the programmers are going to do about that.

We are planning on working really hard over the weekend to get something that looks more like a game by Tuesday night when we have to present the game to the Master students that to have them critique it.

I talked to Charlie, and I have to designed a new mid size ship for Tuesday. I don't really know where to start, all I know is that it has to be big enough to have a small crew but not to bulky that it looks like a capital ship. :(

Also, at the end of class James told us that he need to split up his role in the group. So from now on, Felix is going to be Scrum Master and James will be the Technical Director.

Thats all for now, thanks for reading.

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Calendar January 11, 2011 20:37

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New Semester

So yesterday was the start of the new semester.

I didn't really do anything during the break, I was thinking about polishing my models and making new ones. But that didn't go too well.

Our group did meet over the break to talk about what we would do for the rest of the semester as far as polishing our game to make it "fun".

Since today was the first day of class, we didn't really do much. We got an introduction to what we are going to do this semester. We also had to talk about where we are in our game since we presented in class last semester.

We finally pined down a lot of the stuff that we are going to do to finally get our game on its way. We are going to start our sprints in the next few days because have to have something better to show for our "play day" where we get to test the other team's game.

That's it, thanks for reading.

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Calendar December 9, 2010 19:59

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Semester Done

So we have finally come to the end of this semester. Remind me to not take 17 credit hours again.

Anyways, we made our presentation today and it went really well. Brandon and Pc were working on a really cool level that would spawn a squadron of enemy ships and attack. Then once all the enemy ships were dead, a capital ship would also appear. But they were having some issues, so we had to present using the old level we used on the last presentation two weeks ago. Bummer.

Anyways, I can finally catch up on my sleep because I haven't had much of it in the last few days.

I didn't really do anything else other than what i posted last night. I was going to work on the texture for the enemy ship today, but Charlie already had a texture ready to go, so we just used his texture.

But just because the semester is over, it doesn't mean that we get to do nothing for the next few weeks. It just means we now have more time to dedicate to the game. :( We won't be working on it as much as we have during the semester, but we are still expected to keep working.

Charlie said that I should UV and texture all my ships because they are most likely going to end up as enemy ships. Then if I really don't have anything else to do, then I can either make more space content (debris and stuff) or make more ships.

Also, after class I went down to L130 and reviewed a game called Break Limit. I can't remember who it was, but someone in our group said to try and review games that have to do with what we are doing. Even if I was somewhat constrained on what I could/should review, this game seemed fun from the description that they give.

Prepare to go mind-numbingly fast as you Blast, Smash and Break Limit through every one and thing in your way! Powerful weapons that get stronger as you play, will help to power a ship that becomes an invincible wrecking ball while accelerating. Alpha Centauri will never be the same! Featuring online scoreboards for Gold subscribers, and local scoreboards to prove you’re better than your siblings!
It actually turned out to be really fun. I spend around 1 -  1 1/2 playing the game before I realized what time it was. I wasn't really good at it, but it still kept me hooked for a really long time.

Anyways, that's all for now. Thanks for reading!

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Calendar December 9, 2010 01:55

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The End is Near

So tomorrow we have to present out Alpha version of the game to the class.

I've been working on the enemy ship for the demo, but it wasn't the one that I had originally made. The one that I made was funky and had triangles in it, which we can't have. So Charlie game me one of his models that he had made a little while back and I cleaned it up and tweaked it just a bit before I started to work on the UV mapping.

I don't think that I've said this before, but I hate UV mapping. Its time consuming and its hard to get it just right. I was trying to take a shortcut and used Maya's auto mapping tool... huge mistake! It did an OK job at mapping out the UV with out distorting them too much. The only problem was that it had broke it up into a ton of little pieces.

So thinking that it was still going to save me time, I sat there putting together the pieces into bigger chunks. But it was taking too much time just trying to figure out which pieces went together. After almost 2 hours of work, I saw that I had made little progress so I decided to start over and do the UVs by hand. After another 2 hours of work, I was done.

The UVs don't look too great, since I just did them in a rush. Also, the lack of sleep might have had something to do with it. Last night I didn't sleep because I was working on a project for another class. I've had around 3 hours of sleep total.

Anyways, here are a few renders from the model the Charlie made and that I UV mapped:

That's all, thanks for reading.

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