Game Progress Update #63

Game Progress Update #63

Hello World! And welcome to the 63rd Dev with Dave Game Progress Update.

It’s not the longest update I’m afraid this time round. I was hoping to get another couple of bugs fixed as well, but time got away from me.

The weather hasn’t helped. I am the exact opposite of solar powered, and the weather here in the UK has once again been amazing. Blue skies and sunshine however means a very lazy Dave.

Most of the work I did get done this time round was relating to the promotional video I am planning to make.

Promotional Video

The goal is to make a 30 second video to use to promote Flappy vaders on social media and on paid adverts. I’d already written a basic plan for it last update on paper.

I am just about happy with the plan for the video, but I am a little less happy that I have the skills to pull it off, but I will try, lol.

While I was planning the video, I did spend a while watching some more videos on how best to make game trailers and promotional videos in general.

I found >this< post to be quite an interesting read about transitions. Not only does it talk in depth about the types of transitions and where they work best, it also had a lot of example movie trailers which demonstrated exactly what the guy was talking about.

Promo video sound track

I started with the musical sound track. As I explained in the previous progress update, the first 6 seconds or so of the video will be quite extreme, full on game play. So the music will start off at around 1.5 times normal speed. Then after the initial 6 seconds have passed, then it slows down to its normal speed. And begins to slowly speed up as the next 18 seconds goes by until it reaches once again the speed it was initially.

I decided the easiest way to get the exact speeds and timings in the music was to code it specifically, so i added a few lines of code to the beginning of the game to do this and allow me to capture it using as video OBS Studio.

Promo video action sequences

Since it was such a success for the sound track I decided I was also going to use a similar method with the gameplay footage as well, rather than leaving up to luck and/or skill! lol.

I am going to disable the automatic acceleration of the game and instead set it manually in code before each recording session.

Also I am going to make an specific zone with all the elements I need in it for the first six seconds of the trailer. I will also be specifying the zones manually.

These game play sections will be recorded without the UI being seen. So I will need to hide those beforehand. I also do not need these videos to have music, only sound effects. So I will need to turn off the music volume in the settings before hand as well.

Unfortunately I didn’t get the special zones for the video finished in time. So I can’t show you any progress on this as yet. I am hoping that I will have at least a rough draft of it done for next time.

That’s all for now.

As always, I will be back in a fortnight with another update. In the mean time, don’t forget to follow Dev with Dave on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter to stay up to date with the project.

Game Progress Update #62

Game Progress Update #62

Hello World! Welcome to the sixty second Dev with Dave game progress update!

The glorious weather has continued. I’m currently sat outside in the garden with my laptop writing this blog post and enjoying the breeze.

A screen grab of the weather on my phone showing a lovely warm day at 21 degrees

This week has mostly been fixing bugs again (and finding new bugs, which was a little disheartening, but more on those later). But I did also manage to get some gameplay recorded hopefully to use for the promotional videos.

Anyway, let me tell you what I’ve got done.

Bug Fixes

In this update I have selected to get the following cards resolved🤞

  • Player sometimes passes below floor
  • Ship “flaps” when pausing/resuming
  • Shield sprite doesn’t disappear at game over

Although the first one was started in the previous update because it took much longer to sort out than expected.

Player sometimes passes below floor

The first card I dealt with this time round was the Player sometimes passes below floor issue which I had previously started in the previous Progress Update.

While investigating the issue, I managed to find a new bug! Lol! The text for the self destruct unlock/upgrade does not change properly. As far as I can see all the other lines of text work properly. But I will test them all, just to be safe. I have added this as a new card on the Trello board.

Actually, I think I found three or four new bugs, but since they all related to the same issues relating to the second chance powerup, I didn’t give them new cards each. Instead I just noted them all in the existing card comments.

However, I did fix the passing through the floor issue. I found there was a conditional which was checking for sprite collisions and passing below a set floor position on the screen.

I duplicated the code and changed it so each conditional only checked for one thing.

I’m actually finding more bugs the more I work on this. It’s quite disheartening tbh 🙁

I noticed that the self destruct powerup was only working once per session. The most likely cause of this was a variable which was not being reset at the end of game (which it pretty much was, but more convuluted)

I tracked it down the the property which monitored the “phase” of the self destruct. It has three possible states, 0 = intialise, 1 = occurring, 2 = finished.

Infinite score bug

In an earlier attempt at solving this problem, I commented out a section which I thought was unused is it was where the phase value was reset to zero, but it turned out it wasn’t, resulting in this slightly chucklesome problem…

What was happening is that it would all run perfectly until the end, when due to some badly designed code, it would reset the phase value to 0, then increase it by 1 (d’oh!) resulting it in not initialising next time round.

Since it all more or less worked otherwise, I simply added a line to the game over section of code which this jumped to afterwards, to reset the phase variable to zero again.

I think this is all working now 🤞

Ship “flaps” when pausing/resuming

The next card on the list was the Ship “flaps” when pausing/resuming one.

The ship reacts to the press of the pause button in the same way as the rest of the screen presses. It propels the ship upwards slightly.

I fixed this issue by isolating the sprite ID of the pause button in game and then only activating a “jump” if the button is NOT pressed.

This was fairly straight forward to accomplish. I used the GetSpriteHitTest() command to see if the specific sprite was being hit at the specific coordinates, and it works as expected.

Shield sprite doesn’t disappear at game over

The Shield sprite doesn’t disapear at game over card was a simple one to fix. I found out where in the code the player sprite was hidden at the end of the game, and then added a line of code to hide the shield sprite as well.

If only every problem were this easy to solve.

Upgrade Store issue

This next card proved tricky to replicate. It was the one I discovered earlier with the self destruct text not updating properly. I checked the code and found nothing too obvious which would be causing only the self destruct powerup to behave like this.

Trailer/Promotional video

I also managed to make a start on a plan for the promotional video. Due to time constraints I am just making one 30 second video which will be used for all intial promo/advertising.

I will be using the graph below taken from Game Makers Toolkit, to create the video.

A graph detailing the rises and falls of intensity as the video progresses

The plan is to have a few seconds of exciting full speed game play at first, before slowing right down and gently introducing key aspects of the game play. As each feature is introduced, the music and temp of the game begin climbing back up to a similar level as the Cold open section.

The climax section will finish by revealing the name of the game and a call to action.

Thats all for now

And that is all I have time for now. I’m going to be back in a fortnight as always. Where I may hopefully have even got all the known issue cards done and dusted, who knows, lol.

Anyway, remember to follow Dev with Dave on social media!

See you next time 🙂