Playmaker Forum

Playmaker News => Work In Progress... => Topic started by: TheDogCatcher on November 04, 2017, 04:26:27 PM

Title: Erebus : Shmup
Post by: TheDogCatcher on November 04, 2017, 04:26:27 PM
Hi folks,

For the last few weeks I've been working on an old school style Shoot 'em Up using playmaker (fantastic tool btw), and I now have a playable demo of the first level available.

Here's the download link for anyone who's interested :

LINK REMOVED project updated

and a couple of screenshots :

(http://www.lizard.clara.co.uk/stuff/Screen4.jpg)

(http://www.lizard.clara.co.uk/stuff/Screen5.jpg)

For more information on the project here's a link to the relevant thread on the shmups.com forums :

https://shmups.system11.org/viewtopic.php?f=9&t=61092 (https://shmups.system11.org/viewtopic.php?f=9&t=61092)

anyhow I hope you enjoy my work and big thanks to the playmaker devs for making such a great and easy to use tool.

regards,

-mark
Title: Re: Erebus : Shmup
Post by: djaydino on November 04, 2017, 09:11:27 PM
Hi,
Nice game.
I played it a little bit, the suspense music is very nice.

i find the movement of the player aircraft a bit slow tho.
Also i noticed some enemies keep shooting, even when they are off screen already.

Is this your 1st project?

Title: Re: Erebus : Shmup
Post by: TheDogCatcher on November 05, 2017, 01:17:26 AM
Hi,

Thanks for the feedback. :)

This is indeed my first project, I'm pretty much a total novice, I've made maps, mods and even total conversions for other games before but this my first attempt at making a full game. Virtually everything I know about using playmaker comes from watching these youtube tutorials :

https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLYYCDVRRWC7c3KawqPYeOMUDHm6soOcNo (https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLYYCDVRRWC7c3KawqPYeOMUDHm6soOcNo)

I've already had some other people asking me to increase the ship speed so that's one of the first things I intend to fix, and I think I've already figured out a solution to the offscreen firing thing.

Btw the music is Mars The Bringer Of War from The Planets by Gustav Holst, one of my all time favourite classical tracks, it's also public domain so no copyright issues. :)

Thanks again for the feedback.

-mark
Title: Re: Erebus : Shmup
Post by: djaydino on November 05, 2017, 06:31:45 AM
Hi,
Happy to help, let me know when you have a new update :)
and feel free to ask anything on the forum if you get stuck.
Title: Re: Erebus : Shmup
Post by: clandestine on November 05, 2017, 09:14:06 AM
I also like it!
You can implement a 'speed' pickup and you're free from critique.
From my personal perspective you must do it more 'over the top' (again, this is a question of taste, not a rule). The explosions must be bigger, the projectiles and ships should be bigger then their hit-boxes... anyway, i got excited, thats why i'm suggesting things :)

Some of my all time favorites below:




Title: Re: Erebus : Shmup
Post by: TheDogCatcher on November 05, 2017, 11:38:09 AM
I also like it!
You can implement a 'speed' pickup and you're free from critique.
From my personal perspective you must do it more 'over the top' (again, this is a question of taste, not a rule). The explosions must be bigger, the projectiles and ships should be bigger then their hit-boxes... anyway, i got excited, thats why i'm suggesting things :)


Thanks for the feedback, I have speed pickups in the game already, in the latest build I've also increased the player ship's base speed.

Explosions still need some work as there is only one type of explosion at the moment and I'm looking into that.

I'll also be tweaking weapon effects as I go .

anyway thanks for taking a look at my project I'm really glad you like it, hopefully things will only get better from here on. :)

I'll upload an updated demo in a few days time.
Title: Re: Erebus : Shmup
Post by: krmko on November 07, 2017, 10:29:23 AM
Can't wait to get home to try it out!
Title: Re: Erebus : Shmup
Post by: TheDogCatcher on November 07, 2017, 11:21:11 AM
If you want to wait a day or so I'll be updating the demo, I've made a lot of improvements so it might be worth the wait.
Title: Re: Erebus : Shmup
Post by: krmko on November 07, 2017, 11:38:46 AM
Sure, just let us know!
Title: Re: Erebus : Shmup
Post by: jeanfabre on November 08, 2017, 01:53:46 AM
Hi,

 do you have a twitter account so that I can tweet on this?

 Bye,

 Jean
Title: Re: Erebus : Shmup
Post by: TheDogCatcher on November 08, 2017, 02:05:48 AM
no, sorry I don't do twitter or any type of social media really.
Title: Re: Erebus : Shmup
Post by: TheDogCatcher on November 08, 2017, 05:24:34 AM
I've uploaded an updated version of the demo, here's the link :

LINK REMOVED - project updated

Here's a list of changes from the changelog:

Quote
Features:

- Player Ship now flashes during 1.5 second period of invulnerablitly after losing a life.

- Screen flashes red when the player loses a life.

- changed green weapon to piercing beam that travels through enemies and reduced weapon damage to compensate.

- changed red weapon to fire beams to the left and right aswell as forwards with the forward shot being slightly more powerful.

- Slightly increased blue weapon damage.

- doubled damage caused by the starting weapon.

- removed player health gauge and replaced it with a standard numerical display.

- removed player life cap.

- player ship starting speed and speed cap increased with bullet speed increased to compensate.

- added new type of explosion for when enemies are hit by bullets but are not killed.

- added option screen with volume sliders for explosion volume and global volume control.

- added Option to set the number of lives that the player starts with.

- added enemy transport ships for carrying powerups.

- added camera fade in at the start of a level and camera fade out at the end.

- added new weapon for type C enemies.

- added new type D enemy.

- added Credits page.


Fixes:

- small enemies firing while Offscreen fixed.

- Changed gravity setting for keyboard controls to eliminate momentum.

- Lowered Volume of pickup sound for powerups.

- removed ability to select non 16:9 aspect ratios.

- health pickup colour changed to orange.


Optimisation:

- reduced resolution of texture maps for terrain to 256 x 256 from 1024 x 1024.

- reduced Indirect Resolution of terrain lightmaps to 0.1 texels per unit from 0.5 texels per unit.

- reduced foliage texture resolution to 512 x 512 from 1024 x 1024.

I've also created a lite version of the demo for people with slower computers, link :

LINK REMOVED - project updated

in the Lite version I've included support for aspect ratios other than 16:9, removed the side panels and rearranged gui elements to better fit the screen.
Title: Re: Erebus : Shmup
Post by: jeanfabre on November 08, 2017, 11:21:30 PM
Hi,

not doing social media is a big mistake when you want to promote your game. I don't do social media for personal stuff, but I do have a twitter account for professional use. This is the way you put chances on your side for a post to go viral and attract players or be noticed by publishers, else your game has far less chance to become successful... I am not saying this is good, it's just how the market and people works unfortunatly.

Bye,

 Jean
Title: Re: Erebus : Shmup
Post by: TheDogCatcher on November 09, 2017, 02:40:09 AM
yeah, you make some good points there, I guess I'd never really given it much thought probably because I've never had a game to promote before, I'll look into it.

thanks,

-mark
Title: Re: Erebus : Shmup
Post by: djaydino on November 09, 2017, 04:20:28 AM
Hi,
I played a bit and the movement feels better now.

You might want to flash also to life counter when you lose a life (better visual for a player to see)
Also a health bar for the bigger enemies that needs to get hit more than once would be nice.

and a 'play again' button would be nice.
Now you can only come back to the main screen when the game is over.

Keep up the good work :)
Title: Re: Erebus : Shmup
Post by: TheDogCatcher on November 09, 2017, 05:05:05 AM
thanks for the feedback, all good suggestions, I'll get those features added for the next update.   :)

also I've got a bit of an issue with the audio, I'll quote mamboFoxtrot from the shmups.com forums as they explain it pretty well.

Quote

The Blue and Default weapons can cause a real ruckus when getting all the bullets on an enemy. It doesn't seem to be spiking the volume too bad, but it is causing a noticeable phasing effect. If you don't want to hassle with placing limits on how many of the same sound effect can be playing at once, you could also try randomizing the pitch some to reduce this effect.

any ideas on how I might limit the phasing effect as this one has me a bit stuck ?
Title: Re: Erebus : Shmup
Post by: djaydino on November 09, 2017, 07:57:26 AM
hi,
You could try to use a 'audio stop' just before you use 'audio play' but maybe it does not sound right you will have to try it out t know if its good or not :)
Title: Re: Erebus : Shmup
Post by: TheDogCatcher on November 09, 2017, 10:20:05 AM
yup, that seems to be a lot better.  :)

I'll get some other people to test it just to make sure as my hearing isn't the greatest (I have tinitus) .
Title: Re: Erebus : Shmup
Post by: TheDogCatcher on November 09, 2017, 01:17:48 PM
ok so now I have another issue that's driving me nuts, I'm using the enemy spawn system detailed at the start of this video :

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4kj-o21byyE

but it seems a bit erratic, sometimes it will spawn the full group of enemies and sometimes it will spawn one less and it seems to be totally random.

here's a screenshot that shows how I have it setup:

(http://www.lizard.clara.co.uk/stuff/EnemySpawnSystem.jpg)

 The only addition I made is to add a bit at the end to delete the group spawner a few seconds after all enemies are launched, I had to include this as without it the spawners wouldn't disapear and this started to cause all sorts of weird issues. I don't think it's a problem with the stuff I've added though as the spawner still behaves erratically even with my additions disabled.


is there a way of fixing the current system or is there a better way of handling this and if so how ?
Title: Re: Erebus : Shmup
Post by: djaydino on November 09, 2017, 04:40:46 PM
Hi,
Can you show the other states/actions (maybe a video or gif) ?

Is there some kind of delay between each activate?
Title: Re: Erebus : Shmup
Post by: TheDogCatcher on November 09, 2017, 06:14:51 PM
basically all the settings are pretty much identical to the video I linked to except that the wait time on the activate Child state is 0.4 seconds rather than 0.35, not that it seems to make much difference as I've had it as high as 2.0 seconds with similar results.

Here's a bunch of screenshots for reference :

wait for trigger:

(http://www.lizard.clara.co.uk/stuff/WaitForTrigger.jpg)

Set parent :

(http://www.lizard.clara.co.uk/stuff/SetParent.jpg)

Get child number :

(http://www.lizard.clara.co.uk/stuff/GetChildNumber.jpg)

Activate child :

(http://www.lizard.clara.co.uk/stuff/ActivateChild.jpg)

Variables:

(http://www.lizard.clara.co.uk/stuff/variables.jpg)

Events :

(http://www.lizard.clara.co.uk/stuff/events.jpg)


Title: Re: Erebus : Shmup
Post by: djaydino on November 10, 2017, 02:59:21 AM
Hi,
The issue here is that when a enemy of that group gets hit, it gets disabled and tend to break the list of your child objects.

How is the enemy group made? is it made in editor or @ runtime?

I think an array would be better here. after start get all the child objects into the array, then use array get next to get each child, then active and wait, then loop back to the array get next and on finished event, wait and remove group.

if the group is build in the editor you can drop in the objects directly into the array so you don't need to use 'get child' actions
Title: Re: Erebus : Shmup
Post by: TheDogCatcher on November 10, 2017, 04:03:19 AM
yeah the group is made in the editor.

I'll give arrays a try, I haven't used them before so it will probably take some head scratching but at least this gives me an alternative solution.  :)

I should probably also point out that even if I don't shoot any enemies they don't always all spawn.

Another thing that might be worth me mentioning is that I did find a way to get all enemies in a group to spawn but it was very buggy. In the Increment Index state if I set the equal condition to CONTINUE rather than FINISHED and in the Activate Child state if I set the Activate Game Object to recursive, then all enemies would spawn but the last one would often spawn late at twice the normal delay ie 0.8 seconds instead of 0.4 and the game would start spewing out divide by zero errors. So definately not a workable solution but I thought that it may help with diagnosing the problem.


anyway thanks for your help so far.

-mark
Title: Re: Erebus : Shmup
Post by: djaydino on November 10, 2017, 04:23:04 AM
Hi,
There is also an action called 'iterate' on the Ecosystem (https://hutonggames.fogbugz.com/default.asp?W1181) which is very useful for looping.
you can find some tutorials on the User Tutorial Wiki Page (https://hutonggames.fogbugz.com/default.asp?W548)
for arrays and iterate :)
Title: Re: Erebus : Shmup
Post by: TheDogCatcher on November 10, 2017, 04:35:01 AM
yay I got it working, it was a lot easier than I thought it was going to be.

I've only tried it on a single test group but it seemed to work ok, further testing will be required but it's looking good so far.   :D


thanks alot for your help.

-mark
 
Title: Re: Erebus : Shmup
Post by: TheDogCatcher on November 10, 2017, 06:02:33 AM
I've just finished doing some more testing and everything appears to be working flawlessly, thank you so much, this is a huge weight off my mind.   :D
Title: Re: Erebus : Shmup
Post by: djaydino on November 10, 2017, 06:09:25 AM
Hi,
Arrays can be very useful :D
Its not hard to learn about them
and once you know how to use them its easy :)
Title: Re: Erebus : Shmup
Post by: TheDogCatcher on November 10, 2017, 06:42:10 AM
yeah, I always imagine these things will be more difficult than they turn out to be ..... most of the time anyway.  :P
Title: Re: Erebus : Shmup
Post by: djaydino on November 10, 2017, 01:58:58 PM
Hi
Yep i know what you are talking about :) I've been there :D
Title: Re: Erebus : Shmup
Post by: krmko on November 11, 2017, 12:01:59 AM
Ok, i played until the end of level, here's my notes :)

1. Ship movement is frustratingly slow. It takes a while for it to speed up, it kinda feels heavy. Compared to the enemy bullets, it's hard to avoid them even if you're skillful.

2. Needs "Restart Button", i don't want to go to main menu to start again.

3. Fonts in main menu are blurry, use textmesh pro

4. Enemy bullets are too small and don't have enough contrast compared to background

5. Pickups should be more distinct, i don't know what i'm picking up, and when i pick it up, if it's not a weapon i have to look at hud to see if it's speed or life.

That's it for now, more enemies and wave patterns are a must of course :)

My kid's still sleeping so i played without sound.
Title: Re: Erebus : Shmup
Post by: TheDogCatcher on November 11, 2017, 04:20:03 AM
thanks for the feedback.  :)

I'll check out textmesh pro, that blurry font thing was really annoying me .

just one quick question, were you using keyboard or a controller to play with ?
Title: Re: Erebus : Shmup
Post by: krmko on November 11, 2017, 04:53:40 AM
Keyboard :)
Title: Re: Erebus : Shmup
Post by: TheDogCatcher on November 11, 2017, 06:09:34 AM
ah I thought so, I've made some changes in the latest build to hopefully make keyboard controls a bit more responsive.
Title: Re: Erebus : Shmup
Post by: TheDogCatcher on November 14, 2017, 10:06:08 AM
Hey folks,

I've updated the Erebus demo once again, both the regular and lite versions have been updated, here's the links :


LINKS REMOVED - project updated


here's a list of changes to the latest versions :

Quote
Features :

- slightly increased travel speed and fire rate of green weapon.

- increased travel speed of red weapon and slightly increased fire rate.

- reduced health of type C enemies from 70 to 60.

- player life counter now blinks when a life is lost.

- removed the explosions volume slider from the options screen.

- added replay and main menu buttons to game over screen.

- set game over message to flash.

- Changed font and colour of speed, lives, score and hiscore counters.

- made enemy bullets brighter and slightly larger.

- added new type E enemy.

- tweaked turret animation for type D enemies to make fire pattern more effective.

- added particle effects to speed powerup to make it look more distinctive.

- changed the first wave of type C enemies so that they don't all spawn in the middle of the screen.


Fixes :

- added check to ensure player still has more than 0 lives before loading next level.

- adjusted hit box of type D enemies to better fit the model.

- increased width of hitbox for the forward beam of the red weapon to better fit with the visual effect.

- lowered volume of pickup sound for life powerup.

- increased gravity for keyboard controls from 10 to 15.

- increased sensitivity for keyboard controls from 3 to 15.

- fixed an issue with enemy spawners which would sometimes cause them to skip the last enemy in the group.

- changes made to the way sound effects are played in an attempt to eliminate phasing.

- text replaced with TextMesh Pro text to improve clarity.

- fixed hitbox for type A enemies which was back to front.


Lite Version :

- limited lite version to 4:3 aspect ratio.

- removed side panels.

- rearranged gui elements to fit 4:3 aspect ratio.

- added text for score, lives, speed and hiscore.

- moved speed and life displays to top of the screen and added background.

for a full list of changes please refer to the changelog.txt file included in the archive.
Title: Re: Erebus : Shmup
Post by: djaydino on November 14, 2017, 02:19:50 PM
Hi,

There are issues selecting the buttons.(especially on the exit button)
When you hover over then you can see that the hitboxes seem to be overlapping.

on the Demo 2 version they where good.

player speed feels good now.
Title: Re: Erebus : Shmup
Post by: TheDogCatcher on November 14, 2017, 10:09:14 PM
yeah I noticed the problem with the buttons, I'm not sure what's going on there - the only thing I changed was the text ..

anyhow it shouldn't be too hard to fix.
Title: Re: Erebus : Shmup
Post by: TheDogCatcher on November 20, 2017, 02:20:50 AM
I've uploaded another update to the demos, here are the links :


Erebus Demo 4 (http://www.lizard.clara.co.uk/stuff/Erebus_Demo_4.7z)


Erebus Demo 4 Lite (http://www.lizard.clara.co.uk/stuff/Erebus_Demo_4_Lite.7z)


and here is a list of changes :

Quote
Features :

- added voices to powerups.

- added voice volume slider to options menu.

- added more wreckage to scenery.

- reduced health of type C enemies from 60 to 45.

- added music volume slider to options menu.

- raised maximum volume for music but set the default value to 50%.

- added health bars to type C and D enemies.

- increased fire rate and movement speed of red and green weapons.


Fixes :

- fixed issued with main menu buttons overlapping.

- fixed issue where level complete message would show even if player had 0 lives left.

- reduced width of hitbox for player ship wings.

- changed explosion effects for powerup carriers so that they don't obscure the powerups as much.

- reduced damage done by green weapon as it was too effective against bosses with the new fire rate.

- reduced lifetime of all player weapons as it was too easy to destroy some enemies while offscreen.


Optimisation:

- reduced particle effects on explosions in attempt to boost performance.

- reduced number of particles used on enemy bullet effects.

- removed trees to boost performance on slower machines.

Also worth noting is the fact that I've removed even more trees from the Lite version of the demo, it would be interesting to find out if this helps cure any performance issues.

As always a full list of changes can be found in the included Changelog.txt file.
Title: Re: Erebus : Shmup
Post by: TheDogCatcher on November 20, 2017, 12:57:08 PM
I've just uploaded a video of the first level to youtube, but I can't seem to figure out how to embed youtube videos in my post, can anyone help ?


here's a regular url for now :




Title: Re: Erebus : Shmup
Post by: djaydino on November 20, 2017, 03:12:08 PM
Hi,
I have edited it for you :)

You can edit your post to see how :) just be sure to remove the 's' from 'https'
Title: Re: Erebus : Shmup
Post by: TheDogCatcher on November 20, 2017, 03:46:59 PM
Thankyou  :)


It was the 's' thing that was throwing me, I almost had it right.
Title: Re: Erebus : Shmup
Post by: TheDogCatcher on November 21, 2017, 01:37:54 AM
To my horror I've just discovered that there is already a game called Erebus, I thought I'd checked pretty thoroughly before deciding on the name but obviously not.....

The other Erebus is an RPG for mobile which might explain why I missed it the first time around as I may only have checked Steam for any games with the same name, anyhow this leaves me with a bit of a dilema, so I'm considering changing the name to Operation Erebus hopefully this will avoid any confusion/law suits.