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Work in Progress / Gravity Force 2 Clone

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Dr Tank
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Location: Southampton, UK
Posted: 7th Nov 2011 04:27 Edited at: 10th Nov 2011 02:36
Sorry for slow response. Given my slow coding, I don't want you going to special efforts now because I might not release another demo for a while! I'd be happy to take any explosion sheets you might have going and try plugging them into the game.

Currently I'm using some free explosions. The ones you sent before are smaller for a given object size, which means i have to use larger plains, and for some reason this caused some pretty nasty glitching! Therefore, if you do fancy making some more, please try to make them a little "bigger".

Still need to sort out the networked mode. It works OK but I think it can be significantly better. After that I'll probably post a demo. Hopefully by Xmas.
enderleit
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Posted: 13th Nov 2011 12:46
Quote: "Should get on it and finish this, before all the old Amiga gamers die of old age."


We're not THAT old... just a little.

The Slayer
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Playing: (Hide and) Seek and Destroy on my guitar!
Posted: 13th Nov 2011 13:43
Quote: "The ones you sent before are smaller for a given object size, which means i have to use larger plains, and for some reason this caused some pretty nasty glitching! Therefore, if you do fancy making some more, please try to make them a little "bigger"."

You want them to be bigger? The current size per frame is 128x128. So, if I make 'em double the size, would that be okay? ?
Just remember that some OS/platforms have difficulties working with images bigger in size than 1024. The size of the spritesheets I've sent you before is 768x640, so if I double the framesize, the sheets will be bigger than 1024.
What do you prefer? That I make 'em twice the size they are now?

Cheers

Dr Tank
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Posted: 13th Nov 2011 17:54
The size in pixels is perfect. The problems i'm getting are related to how big i need to make the polygons in order to get the explosions to look the right size - if the explosions filled more of each frame on the sprite sheet, i could make the polygons smaller, and therefore not see the glitches. Thanks.

Quote: "We're not THAT old... just a little."

Compared to how old we're going to be in the future, we are pretty young.
The Slayer
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Posted: 13th Nov 2011 18:14
Quote: "if the explosions filled more of each frame on the sprite sheet, i could make the polygons smaller, and therefore not see the glitches. Thanks."

Aaah okay, I see. No problem, I'll work on it. Have some very sweet explosions for you in store, Dr Tank!

One more thing, do you prefer transparent sheets, or with a black colour (like in the previous ones)?

Dr Tank
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Posted: 14th Nov 2011 04:11
Black as transparent is great - i'm using "light ghosting" effect. I look forward to seeing them!
The Slayer
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Posted: 18th Nov 2011 14:05
Quote: "Black as transparent is great - i'm using "light ghosting" effect. I look forward to seeing them!"

Okay, no problem. Email sent!

Dr Tank
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Posted: 21st Nov 2011 03:32
I got the email! They look good. Will put try them out in the game problably in the next couple of days. Would have done so this weekend but i got Saints Row 3!
Dr Tank
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Posted: 9th Dec 2011 03:06
Here's version 1.4.

This release has better framerate, nicer presentation (player 2 controls their stuff in the menu) and it has a replay mode and some display options. There are 2 different explosion image types now, as well as more levels and weapons.

Online isn't quite done yet, and is disabled in this version. It's the next thing i'm sorting out though and should be in 1.5.

Please let me know if it works and what you think etc.
Dimis
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Location: Athens, Hellas
Posted: 15th Dec 2011 15:14
I like it! It is very addictive, good work man. I really like destroying the backgrounds, and the explosions look very good!

Waiting for a full release.

Cheers!!
Dr Tank
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Posted: 30th Dec 2011 02:35
Thanks. Not sure what i'll classify as a "full release". I called it "1.0" a long time ago, but there's still a lot to add. Apart from more weapons, cosmetic stuff, changes to the mechanics, the main things to add are new modes. I need to finish online, and hopefully add some kind of single player mode.

I like destroying backgrounds too. I think some kind of time trial destroying stuff mode would be cool, with medals and online leaderboards. I imagine more people would play single player modes.

Anyway here's a new video that shows the shockwave shader added recently:

BlackWhite
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Posted: 16th Jan 2012 16:08 Edited at: 16th Jan 2012 18:25
This is absolutely fab. I would love to design a different version of this more like this.




But the feel of the game is pretty freaking nice.
Dr Tank
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Posted: 8th Apr 2012 02:55 Edited at: 8th Apr 2012 05:51
Thanks dude. Glad you like it.

NEW DEMO!
GRAVITY FORCE X v1.5
Alternate Link

LAN mode works now. I posted a video to explain how to connect:


LINK TO YOUTUBE VIDEO

Besides online mode, there are some new weapons and many minor tweaks.

Next up :
* Try to speed up slow functions (some weapons can cause slowdown on slow computers)
* Improve menus and HUD
* Balance, add weapons
* Server for easy connection
* better instructions, credits etc
* some kind of single player mode

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TheComet
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Location: I`m under ur bridge eating ur goatz.
Posted: 12th Apr 2012 22:14
Fantastic Dr Tank!

I have a few ideas for further power ups (if you're interested):

-anti-gravity: removes gravity for a certain amount of time. This means the steering will feel the same as in the game Asteroids.
-floating mines?
-homing missile
-temporary immunity shield

I just played the game with a friend, and it was a lot of fun! I found a way to drill myself through the level and "camp" at the very top. He couldn't get up there quickly because his weapon wasn't designed to drill through the level.

It would be helpful to have a description of every weapon when you select them. I wasn't sure what the difference between "cluster bomb", "mega cluster bomb", and "epic cluster bomb" was. I of course chose epic

The visuals are impressive. I can feel you've perfected your particle and weapon system. The distortion effects aren't quite what I expected.

It would be cool if you added a small splash effect when a ship hits the water.

Performance wise it ran almost fine. For some reason the game would drop to ~2 fps for about 5 seconds every minute or so. I tested it on a laptop:



Great work! I'm looking forward to more updates.

TheComet

Dr Tank
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Posted: 13th Apr 2012 05:51
Thanks dude!

Quote: "I have a few ideas for further power ups (if you're interested):

-anti-gravity: removes gravity for a certain amount of time. This means the steering will feel the same as in the game Asteroids.
-floating mines?
-homing missile
-temporary immunity shield"

Thanks for the ideas- I am interested! If you have any more, please let me know.
Homing missiles are in, although they want tweaking. Will probably have floating mines for next release.
Anti-gravity, shields - i'd like to do stuff like this. Something like a shot repulsing shield would be cool.

Having no gravity/ Asteroids style levels could be fun - the original GF2 let you change gravity, drag etc in world options.

Quote: "I just played the game with a friend, and it was a lot of fun! I found a way to drill myself through the level and "camp" at the very top. He couldn't get up there quickly because his weapon wasn't designed to drill through the level."

Nice! If you want you can save your replay by pressing return after the match. Then you can find the file in the replays directory. If you want, send me some matches you played (attach to post) - then i can play them back, and record with FRAPS and up to youtube. Would be cool to have some 2 player match vids, and would be useful for balancing weapons.

I'll see about sticking in some info in options for weapons. Epic cluster bombs are like cluster bombs inside cluster bombs. They are a bit ridiculous. The slowdown you saw probably occured when many explosions were happening at once- the func that cuts holes in the level was fairly slow. I sped it up a lot last night. Will update fairly soon with changes.

Glad you like the visuals. Distortion effect isn't quite as cool looking as yours. Can you suggest some way to make it better? Water waves/splash is on the "to do" but is low priority.

Thanks for playing.
TheComet
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Posted: 13th Apr 2012 20:56
Quote: "Distortion effect isn't quite as cool looking as yours. Can you suggest some way to make it better?"


If you're using 3D plains for everything, then you're free to use my distortion function. It does require an extra camera to work, so keep that in mind. If you're using 2D then I can't think of anything that wouldn't destroy your fps

Unfortunately I didn't save any replays, but I can play again and send you some if you like.

I hope to play your new version soon!

TheComet

Dr Tank
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Posted: 15th Apr 2012 23:11 Edited at: 16th Apr 2012 00:57
GRAVITY FORCE X 1.6

SENDSPACE ALTERNATE DOWNLOAD LINK

This version has a faster function for cutting circles out of the level. This means the framerate drops less when lots of explosions are happening. There are a few more framerate optimisations that will be in the next version, but this version is much better than last, at least on my netbook.

Since TheComet suggested floating mines, I have added in a new weapon - "PARA MINES". These are basically very high drag mines that fall very slowly. To select, go "left" from default selected special weapon.

Note that replays created for v1.5 won't work in 1.6, and online play between the two won't work properly. Please use the latest version - it's better!


Quote: "If you're using 3D plains for everything, then you're free to use my distortion function. It does require an extra camera to work, so keep that in mind. If you're using 2D then I can't think of anything that wouldn't destroy your fps"

Oh right. I'm rendering everything as 3D objects, and using a shader for the ripples. Maybe slowdown from your way would be less than my way. I will play around with this later. Currently the ripples are only cosmetic so can be turned off for slower computers.

Quote: "Unfortunately I didn't save any replays, but I can play again and send you some if you like."

That would be ace. Next time you feel like playing and think the match was cool, on the "player x wins" screen, hit return and it'll write out your replay to the replays directory.

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Dr Tank
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Posted: 22nd Apr 2012 01:51 Edited at: 22nd Apr 2012 01:57
Version 1.7
Alternate Download Link (Sendspace)

One more weapon (shrapnel grenades)
Weapon descriptions as suggested by TheComet
Improvements to appearance of shockwaves
some optimisations for better framerate

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David Garcia
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Posted: 10th Jul 2012 13:45
I found it when I was looking for a videogame called Insanely Twisted Shadow Planet... it reminded me of Gravity Force, and then started looking for it. And then I found that MASTER PIECE!

I am curious to know what´s the current status of the video game?
Pincho Paxton
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Posted: 10th Jul 2012 18:26 Edited at: 10th Jul 2012 18:28
Looks very good. I used to have this game, and forgot all about it. I like Thrust too, with the dangling bomb. Maybe BlackWhite could make Thrust?

David Garcia
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Posted: 11th Jul 2012 23:10
Dr Tabk, any chance of considering what BlackWhite suggested about the graphics and background. That would maje the game look modern.

And realted to the special weapons, I would set them in the way the most powerful weapons have less ammo than the less powerful. As an example in my opinion all the Multidir weapons last too long and are too powerful compared to other special weapons that last way less and has way less power.

Also had an idea regarding the special weapons, maybe you could add them as collectable items around the game, so when you hit a wall, maybe there is a weapon to pick there. Those items should last for very few shots.

Excuse my english as I am spanish. I really would encourage you to upgrade the graphics to a more visual and modern way.
Dr Tank
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Posted: 14th Jul 2012 02:04
Glad you like it! Current status is not much different to latest demo here. I've been very busy at work and getting a house. Once I've moved in I hope to find some time for this, perhaps in a month or two.

Some of the weapons are very unbalanced at the moment! I haven't attempted to balance some of the more ridiculous weapons, like banana bombs, multidirectional shot. They are very powerful - perhaps having them as powerups is a good idea. On the other hand, I like the idea of having a mode where players can choose to play an unbalanced/handicapped game. This makes it more fun to play with people with a different skill level. Perhaps a balanced "ranked" match mode could have weapons more locked down.

About visuals - currently the level graphics come from the original game, although with 2x smooth upscaling. I would like to make some new tilesets, and perhaps use normal maps/lighting. I'm attempting to make this like a remake+, and don't want to stray too far from the look and feel of the original game. I do agree the graphics could be nicer though.

Thanks for playing.
David Garcia
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Posted: 16th Jul 2012 12:07
No, thank you for releasing such a brilliant re-make! Thumbs up!

You are right about the diferent possibilities regarding weapons, as some guys would have diferent skills and an unbalanced game in what comes to weapons can do the work. Didn´t thought about that but I do think the ammo each weapon has, should be limited depending on how powerfull it is.

So, about graphics, even if you don´t feel like changing the original thing, I would like to see some nice levels. Not meaning the current levelsare bad, they are like the original, like what you said, but just to put an example of what could be done maybe you could add an special level. Something to prove how could it be.

And from there, I use to play for years already a free car game called Generally where the comunitty (we have our own forums for the game) creates the cars, the tracks, etc. Would there be any chance to create maps for Gravity Force anyway for a user??? Maybe having the game own forums would help and maybe some people could create some tools, etc. As happened with Generally.

In that geame, creating circuits is all about a BMP image of a concrete dimensions, just using a palette the game will recognice, so one colour is gravel, other colour is tarmac, other colour is grass, and every material has his own level of grip or his own characteristics. Not sure about here, but, do you imagine how fun could that be to create a Gravity Force comunity and see many many people start creating levels that way? Also in generally there is a chance to create the cars very easy aswell, so maybe in here there could be an option to create Space Battle Ships with an image aswell in a determined size graphic so the game would accept it and you could be able to choose from the main menu if you dropped that images previously in his folder out of the game.

I will be waiting then for new updgardes of the game then.

Note: As you see I am really enthusiast with your game, as I have been years and years with my brother looking for it, as we played in the old A500+. I would offer myself for any help...
Dr Tank
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Posted: 18th Jul 2012 04:00 Edited at: 18th Jul 2012 04:04
Thanks again!

Some of the weapons i have tried to balance, trading off damage with ammo, fire rate, friendly fire risk etc. Some of the newer weapons I have not bothered to yet - some have ammo numbers extremely high.

It would be nice to make forums, a webpage and stuff. Maybe I'll do this at some point. I do want to have a server for high scores, replays, matchmaking etc.

A level editor would be good. The level files are mostly exposed currently, but some configuration is still hard coded into the game. I will expose this and document the format in future. If someone wanted to make an editor, it would save me a job!

When I have time to make an update, it will be great if anyone can give feeback on balance, run performance tests etc. Once I have the code sorted, I'd like to check connected play over the internet too, and play a few matches assuming it works OK!

If you have any match replays (hit return after playing to save, then check for the most recently modified file in the replays directory), it would be great if you could post the file to me, (eg attach to post here) with info on who the players are. I could then capture a video and stick it up on youtube.
David Garcia
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Posted: 19th Jul 2012 15:48
Sure thing, count me in for any help. I will make some matches with my brother during next week and I will send you the replay files.

Creating a forum/community would help to find someone able to create tools and little editing programs.
David Garcia
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Posted: 3rd Aug 2012 12:56
No news of my brother atm... he will be on hollydays for the rest of his life it seems.
Dr Tank
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Posted: 26th Aug 2012 22:58
That sucks, but nice for him though! Speaking of holidays, I have plenty to use up by the end of the year. Should use some to finsh this a little more.
David Garcia
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Posted: 6th Sep 2012 11:36
That´s nice.

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