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Work in Progress / Exodos

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Dimis
7
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Joined: 12th Jun 2011
Location: Athens, Hellas
Posted: 11th Feb 2017 20:37
Thank you Chris! I am a bit tired working on the same project for such a long time but i want to complete it.
Now to push things foreword i will upload a demo with 1-2 characters. I am interested to see how it performs on other machines. Altgough i did many improvements that increased performance, one of them was a change in how enhanced animations work, but after installing a later version of advanced lighting, that made possible the use of post filters, there is again a small performance loss, but it is not that bad. It only happens some times.
Stab in the Dark software
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Playing: Badges, I don't need no stinkin badges
Posted: 11th Feb 2017 22:05
Happy Birthday Dimis, Looking forward to testing the demo.
No cake emoticons oh well here is some
Because if I give you I am not sure you will finish the demo.LOL
The coffee is lovely dark and deep,and I have code to write before I sleep.
Chris Tate
DBPro Master
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Location: London, England
Posted: 25th Mar 2017 13:01
How is this game coming along?
Dimis
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Location: Athens, Hellas
Posted: 29th Mar 2017 20:56
It has been the busiest time if the year and i haven't been updating this thread as i should have.

Thanks for the Stab, i wouldn't have handled without it.

About the game

Before releasing a new demo, i had a small "to do" list to take care of first, but that list increased significantly those last weeks. First of all, i had to fix a big flaw. There was an error in my logic that prevented the 2 vs 2 team fight work, although the 3 vs 3 mode was working. That has been fixed now. Another thing i wanted to improve was the control input. Now every character's button inputs are stored in a better way, so it is easier to do combos or connect special attacks during combos. Other things that were improved involved, animation speed effects, hit freezing, slowdowns, also AI behavior was improved, graphical changes, improved all character skins and specular maps, character models look more shiny and detailed.

Something that i will leave for later is the game's hud. Every power bar and other gauges and indicators are affected from the post processing effects and they are not very clear, so i will have to either use sprites again, or find a way to exclude them from post effects.

So now i want to do some more tests, to make sure that some bugs have been removed from gameplay, and i think that after this weekend i will upload a small demo with 2 characters and 1 background.
Ortu
DBPro Master
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Posted: 30th Mar 2017 04:48
Woohoo!
http://games.joshkirklin.com/sulium

A single player RPG featuring a branching, player driven storyline of meaningful choices and multiple endings alongside challenging active combat and intelligent AI.
Chris Tate
DBPro Master
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Location: London, England
Posted: 31st Mar 2017 13:19
Quote: "so i will have to either use sprites again, or find a way to exclude them from post effects."


I would have excluded the 3D objects from post rendering by using camera masking; but because I do not use the Advanced Lighting plugin, I do not know how easy it would be for you to use the following masking solution:



Setting the object masking bits will cause the camera's to bypass drawing objects without their relative bit set to true for the object. The key is to understand how object masking affects the Advanced Lighting system, and what cameras are available for you to use for the UI.

You may also use Set Camera To Image for rendering the UI camera content to an image for pasting on the screen or for use as a sprite.

Personally, I use sprites and windows for most of my UI, just because it is best for my game.

Looking forward to seeing the demo.
Dimis
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Location: Athens, Hellas
Posted: 8th Oct 2018 19:27
Hi! It's been a very long time since the last update.

And now we have a thread unlock button, thank you TGC for that! Maybe i should make a new thread, since this one is full of broken image links I don't know.

Anyway i will be posting some updates when i have some extra time, i hope in the next 2-3 days.

Until then here's my latest video, actually it's pretty old and outdated, but i can't record a new one for now. After upgrading my hdd to a modern ssd and re-installing windows, something doesn't work correctly on my system and my game's performance is unstable.

Attached is an image with the temporarily setup of the character select screen, which i need to talk about further, in my next posts.

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blink0k
AGK Developer
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Joined: 22nd Feb 2013
Location: the land of oz
Posted: 11th Oct 2018 03:18
That is totally and completely kick arse! What a stunning game. I can see the love in every single pixel. Super awesome work and best of luck with it!
Ortu
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Location: Austin, TX
Posted: 11th Oct 2018 04:54
so awesome! each video gets better glad this still lives
http://games.joshkirklin.com/sulium

A single player RPG featuring a branching, player driven storyline of meaningful choices and multiple endings alongside challenging active combat and intelligent AI.
Kuper
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Playing: Planescape:Torment
Posted: 12th Oct 2018 17:47 Edited at: 12th Oct 2018 17:51
Great project!I hope someday I'll see it on steam.
I think you can upgrade your animation with this stuff:

I try to use it few years ago but abandoned this idea.My setup was with 3 PS eye cameras - pretty easy workflow.
Chris Tate
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Posted: 13th Oct 2018 22:22
That most certainly looks like a vast improvement compared to the previous implementations. I suspect your shader development skills have improved quite a bit.

Welcome back. Looking forward to purchasing. Is there X-Box controller support?
Dimis
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Location: Athens, Hellas
Posted: 14th Oct 2018 18:46 Edited at: 14th Oct 2018 18:49
Thank you guys, for the support and the encouragement. I have put so much time and effort in this project and I look forward into completing it!

Kuper, that's awesome, motion capture only with cameras, is pretty sweet. I will definitely look into this, but for a future project maybe. I don't want to go back redoing things, i have already spent a lot of time on this game.

Chris Tate, it is more of making a better use of Advanced Lighting, plus many optimizations both on media and code. About controllers i have tested both my PS4 and xbox(360) controllers and they work well enough, but not perfectly. An annoying problem is that for some reason, i can't get hat angle input from 2 controllers, only from one. And i prefer to play fighting games using the D-pad instead of the analogue stick. Although the analogue sticks work fine.

Now about the Advanced Lighting there is another problem that bothers me. I still use an earlier version of AL and not the most recent one, for many reasons, one of them is that the particle system was (temporarily?) removed, and i use it extensively in my game now. I still use windows 7 at my home computer and i test my game on 2 PCs running windows 10, at my work. The game works fine, but i can't compile my game at those computers! I have installed the same version of DBpro on those computers, I even used a portable USB installation to make sure that there are not any missing files or any other installation problems but every time i try to compile the game i only receive a "compilation failed" error, no error codes or anything. All other side projects will compile normally. I narrowed down the problem and it is something in AL, don't know what exactly, but i try to compile only all the AL code alone, and i only receive the "compilation failed" error. I will soon buy a new windows 10 PC and i want to resolve this issue before that.

Now about the game, what we have so far? Pretty much there are 16 fighters completed, plus other 3 in development.

Namely the characters are:

Deimos, son of the god of war.
Hyperion, formerly a titan controlling solar light.
Medusa, formerly a guardian of Athena's Temple, turned into a formidable beast, able to petrify every living creature in her sight.
Charon, born from chaos, became the ferryman of the dead world.
Voreas, god of the North wind.
Atalante, an Amazon and hunter.
Achilleas, legendary king and warrior.
Phovos, second son of the god of war.
Asterion (the Monitaur).
Eris, goddess of strife and discord.
Circe, a powerful sorceress.
Pollux, immortal son of Zeus, trained hand to hand combat.
Talos, female artificial being, created by the god of fire.
Hephaestus, the god of fire.
Persephone, queen of the dead world.
Andromeda, formerly princess of Ethiopia.

Still working on
Castor brother of Pollux, also trained in hand to hand combat.
Enceladus, earth titan.
And a final boss character, i haven't decided whom exactly yet.
Chris Tate
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Posted: 18th Oct 2018 13:35 Edited at: 18th Oct 2018 13:36
Very interesting. I am glad things have come along rather well.

Regarding the compilation issue, how many lines of code are being compiled?

The compiler will crash on some systems if the project it is large. Especially older versions of Windows, 32bit CPUs with low RAM. My old PC could not compile more than say 2000 functions over 30,000 lines; or about 1000 functions over say 50,000 lines. My latest PC on Windows 8.1 .. compiles like a charm well over 5000 functions with no issue. The same is true for sub routines.

I've experienced your issue many times in the past when writing too much code in the DBP project. I think there is a DLL version of AL, am I correct? If so, that would be the long term solution for reducing the complicity of the compilation. Using DBPro Ex version to compile may also prevent the issue. (https://forum.thegamecreators.com/thread/217979)

I have resorted to stiving to reduce DBP code to the minimum, I put all the backend stuff in server projects, DLLs using .NET, and a little C++ for creating custom DBP plugins. Mainly for simplification. But perhaps try that for the next game, since you appear to be almost done with this one.
Dimis
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Location: Athens, Hellas
Posted: 19th Jan 2019 21:01 Edited at: 20th Jan 2019 10:55
Again it's been a while since my last post, things move on along nicely, but not very fast. Now, next week i will have my new pc delivered, so this will boost things up a bit.

Yesterday i downloaded the latest available version of advanced lighting. Being curious to see how my models will look like with the newer version, i replaced in the example program the included model with one of my own models. Attached is a screenshot of the test scene, the left side is the new test scene. The model looks a bit plastic, but i can adjust the specular map, skin color and lighting sources to correct that. Also i see that there is no SSS support in the new shaders but that is not a huge problem. Anyway the entire display of the test scene looks better than the current state of my game, the textures look better, the normal map looks better,the entire display is smoother and more clear, looks more modern, so i want to update my game now to use the latest AL system. Again there is a problem, i still can't compile AL code, i get this error:

"Subscript must be Integer or DWORD when referencing an array at line 66."

in this line

Reflection=Reflection_Create("Media\Reflection\Map Reflect")

Anybode uses the latest AL? I could use some advice here.I use the DBpro version from GitHub,also installed DBPro 9Ex,the jGfx plugin required by AL, is there something that i am missing or doing wrong? Perhaps a missing or corrupt dll, or something with my system?


Edit

The problem had to do with the included files, i had to write the full path for the program to include those files. Then other problems start showing up! Eventually i was able to compile a new exe, but it will not run, it produces a runtime error at a line that does not exist! (line 10573 , although i check the fulldump file and the last line is 10230). Anyway i wonder what version Evolved uses to compile his programs.

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Dimis
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Posted: 20th Jan 2019 19:38 Edited at: 20th Jan 2019 19:51
Today i tried an earlier version of AL with partial success. I compiled a test scene, but from an older version of DBpro and the exe works normally. Attaching another screenshot of Deimos in pose, in the test scene. The entire look of the model is better.
I also compiled another exe from the GitHub version, the exe runs but it produces 2 error codes, but since i am no shader expert, they don't really help me (error messages also attached), and there are display problems, the screen turns black while i move the camera. I will continue to work on it.

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Dimis
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Posted: 24th Jan 2019 23:44
So, today I had my new pc delivered. It was about time I had my old pc replaced. So after a long time I can test my game at maximum performance with steady 60fps, without any slowdowns. Now that's pretty exciting.
Now about the latest Advanced Lighting, I keep looking at Evolved's webpage, he updates AL frequently lately, each version produces less errors when I work with it, but still it is a wip, he keeps making a lot of changes, so I will keep working with the old version that I use. I hope that he will release a final working version, that I will be able to install eventually.

For the past couple of weeks I am doing some work on the characters that I have made so far, not working on other characters. Right now, half of them have an alternative outfit, I plan to make alternative models for all of them. I attached a jpg showing both Achille's outfits.

I also work on all character skin textures, all the skins I made so far were too dark, I had to use strong lighting sources, so I brightened all skins and reduced the strength of lighting sources, but I kept the background textures dark, not too dark, just enough to make the character models stand out more in every scene.

About the character select screen. I tried to make it more modern, like most fighting games use. So, while moving the cursor on character thumbnail photos, the program will load the actual model with full gear and textures. Not instantly, if the cursor stays over a photo for 1 second the actual model with be loaded and shown on screen, well that's how all fighting games work today. The problem with DBpro is that while loading the model the game will go through a small pause, as expected, modern games load their models in a flash, without pausing. I wish there was a way to make the models load somehow in the background while the program continues to run without interruptions. Still it is not the media loading from the hard drive that takes too long, the creation of the character's animation controller seems to take more time, so perhaps there could be a way to work around it. I will post a video of the character select screen in a next post.

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Dimis
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Posted: 28th Jan 2019 10:49
So here's a clip of the wip select screen. I will probably change on improve the background, or perhaps use a background photo instead of real objects.



Here's another clip of latest gameplay.

Ortu
DBPro Master
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Posted: 28th Jan 2019 23:41
Looks great. You might consider pasting a static image of the character's first frame or something to cover the moment of character disappearance during the load/switch, or just preload them all before the select screen is shown.
http://games.joshkirklin.com/sulium

A single player RPG featuring a branching, player driven storyline of meaningful choices and multiple endings alongside challenging active combat and intelligent AI.
Dimis
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Location: Athens, Hellas
Posted: 30th Jan 2019 09:15
Good suggestion Ortu, but the real annoying thing is the small pause, while the processor loads the selected model and creates the animation character controller. In 1 player mode it is not a big bother, but in a 2 players vs mode, it is annoying. Modern fighting games can load the models while the players scroll through the available characters at the same time, without pausing. I don't think that's possible in DBpro. I will try to skip the character animation controller creation, since this is what takes most of the time, maybe add some animation frames within the models, just for the select screen. Or just use thumbnails until both players choose their fighters, and load the models after that.
Preloading the models could work if there was only 1 instance of every character at any given time, but in a 3 VS 3 fighters mode (attached image), there can be up to 6 instances of the same character, doesn't make sense but a fighter can fight 1 or multiple copies of himself, something that started with Street fighter II. Anyway that's going to be an overwhelming amount of models and textures.

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Ortu
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Posted: 31st Jan 2019 20:24
Right, that pause is what im talking about. I'd still preload one of each, then you should be able to quickly instance any duplicates for the select screen and you can load a full copy as the level loads
http://games.joshkirklin.com/sulium

A single player RPG featuring a branching, player driven storyline of meaningful choices and multiple endings alongside challenging active combat and intelligent AI.
Golelorn
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Posted: 8th Feb 2019 21:05
Is this DB? I never noticed this forum existed until now. That is some amazing looking particles.
Ortu
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Posted: 9th Feb 2019 01:48
Yeah it's DBpro and Dimis does some fantastic work with it

This section doesn't get much activity anymore since it is all dbpro, but there is some great stuff to dig through
http://games.joshkirklin.com/sulium

A single player RPG featuring a branching, player driven storyline of meaningful choices and multiple endings alongside challenging active combat and intelligent AI.
Dimis
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Posted: 10th Feb 2019 21:10
Golelorn, yes it's DBpro. The particle system is part of an old version of Advanced Lighting, i made almost all of the particle images used, but the code and the shaders were provided by the forum user Evolved. A lot of things can still be made with DBpro although it is not supported by the TGC anymore.

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