Unreal Milestone #3
This milestone unfortunately had a lot of pieces put on hold- whether it was from re-structuring some pieces of the game or other projects with closer deadlines. But, nonetheless, progress has been made and I really hope to use the next milestone to catch up to where I would like to be and continue progressing the project.
Deliverables: Dodging, Boss Two, Boss Three, Friend Birds
Dodging has not been implemented. There were attempts to use elements such as tutorials of dodge-rolls using transforms, physics and force application, and other unreal techniques like Launch Character. These were unsuccessful and the next steps are to attempt to use a timeline to keep the player in the circular path of the gameplay area, as well as to implement an animation that can be timed correctly. There will also need to be implementation of an “immunity timer” which I have discovered, in order to prevent the player from being damaged while they are dodging something.
This milestone, I caught up with where I would like the map to be. I've added procedurally generated foliage, various scenic meshes, and space-filling decor that gives the space more life.
There are props placed around to fill the gaps and make the map feel more alive.
The circle arena format is still there, I hope to fill it with more elements like short grass and pieces to fill the baseball diamond-looking space.
The foliage is procedurally generated and the nearest trees are blueprints with falling leaves. I've really liked how it turned out. The lack of trees in the background is not visible from the player perspective, so that was helpful.
The enemies have had iteration through this milestone. Because of the lack of mechanics in the gameplay, there is now an addition to the loop where spiders will be spawning from the enemy and the player needs to jump on them to defeat them. A “king spider” will appear after a wave of spiders and once the player jumps on that one, the crystal will appear and the player can attack. This has been developed upon before continuing with the bosses. The AI navigation and movement of the spider, the ledges to block the player have been implemented using invisible colliders and log asserts, and the the spider spawning have all been implemented over this milestone to progress the process.
The spiders are will be spawning from the boss and pursuing the player until the "king spider" appears and gives them the vital crystal.
The spider is using a normal navmesh to track and hunt the player.
The friend birds have not been implemented. I have been developing knowledge of how to give them AI to move independently to where they need to be while they await the player to continue in the game. I am hoping to continue catching up on mechanics and implement these pieces as soon as possible.
The fireball has made progress- there is now a full niagara effect in place- spawning from the enemy and heading in a trajectory towards the player. It has all physics and visuals ready for a prototype.
There is also an explosion effect if it hits the player, giving some user feedback when the player has been hit.
Ledges are now in the map- the player has obstacles in their path for added elements to gameplay and player experience. I've added "tree roots" that have colliders hidden by logs to require the player to jump onto them.
The player gets caught on the collider and the height is low enough that the player cannot skip over it, but the jump is not a hindrance.
Unfortunately, a lot of my time in the past few weeks has been dedicated to the Ubisoft project and thus limited my time available for this one. This project was a nice stress reliever at times- I made a small bird village of my teammates when I was burnt out one night. It was a very nice break to all the constant stream from classes.
What went Right?
I iterated a lot on the beginning concepts. I feel more confident moving forward with the plans for gameplay and additional elements to the game to make it more fun and add to the project overall. I have also become more confident adding pieces and having a better time-estimate for what to expect. For example- I almost have the camera movement entirely complete. This was just something I thought I could manage when I had little time, but it was so much more straightforward than expected. I am in the process of implementing an orbiting camera, like the ball camera in Rocket League. I thought it would take lots of attempts and errors, but it really was much more simple and made sense. That was a great surprise and I feel more confident taking on more intimidating elements.
What went Wrong?
I was not great with managing my balance in my projects this week. I really wish I would have allocated more time for this project and I would like to try to make that up asap. The base elements need to be solidified and established to a point where I can continue to build off of them and make more progress in the game.
What will you Change?
I'd like to work on balancing my time in my projects better. I overloaded a different game and this one suffered from it, which I would like to fix and not repeat. I hope I can manage my time better between classes and things I need to do. I also need to start more things rather than wait on them because I think they will take a long time. Sometimes if I just start them, they end up being a lot simpler than I thought
Where do I need help?
Right now, I think I just need help to get my ducks back in a row now that I can come back and focus on this game. I'm a little scattered after some crunch time, but I'm very excited to get back into this project. I would like to get a plan together again to catch up to where I want to be, but it does seem a little overwhelming right now, so talking through it with peers is probably what would personally be best for development at this time.