Monday, 22 February 2016

Flappy Whale v0.3.0 (Graphics Update - ewry games)

We have finally started introducing proper graphics into the game :D You can know play as the "Sky Whale" and flap your way through the skies!

Flappy Whale! v0.3.0 - ewry games

Note that I've bumped the resolution and changed the aspect ratio to make the game better suited to modern displays :) The scrolling background is very simple but I was very pleased with how easy it was to put together. We are definitely going to start polishing everything a lot more, our current targets are:

  • Introduce new difficulty modes
  • Update the whale graphics
  • Add new fonts

Saturday, 20 February 2016

Flappy Cube v0.2.3 (Highscore - ewry games)

This small update to the game has cleaned up the HUD and introduced a Highscore!

Flappy Cube v0.2.3 - ewry games

I managed to uncover the "pipes don't spawn" bug in the Tutorial. This old bug was present in the spawning logic for the pipes. When I created Tutorial, I simply copy and pasted the code over. This bad practice came back to haunt me, code duplication is the devil! I've known killed the duplicated code and there is a single piece of spawning logic that is configurable now :)

There is a choice on spawning pipes/ships randomly or in a fixed position.

Sadly the Highscore doesn't persist if you refresh the game :( This will be something we look at once the game is more fully fledged!

Wednesday, 17 February 2016

Flappy Cube v0.2.2 (Bug Fixes - ewry games)

Fixed an issue where the game wasn't restarting properly after colliding with a pipe.

Flappy Cube v0.2.2 - ewry games

It seems unpausing may not work properly if you attempt it just before switching scene. Another "gotcha" to add to the list for Stencyl :(

Flappy Cube v0.2.1 (ewry games)

We have a minor version bump for Flappy Cube! Now we open off with a start menu and I've introduced a basic tutorial :)

Flappy Cube v0.2.1 - ewry games

I found that there was shared logic between all these buttons to switch the scene and draw the button text in the right place. Behaviours in Stencyl seem to be the best way to go when trying to encapsulate/share logic.

Switching Scenes Behaviour

Behaviours can expose configurable attributes and they really help in reducing the amount of duplicated code. Sadly there doesn't appear to be an easy to compose behaviours though.

Flappy Cube v0.1.2 (Scoring Added - ewry games)

This patch update introduced scoring.

Flappy Cube v0.1.2 - ewry games

I implemented this by firing an event every time one of the pipes left the screen, as that coincided with the player jumping paste them successfully.  The out of the box "actor has left the scene" event in Stencyl didn't seem to want to play ball with me at all though. It seemed to fire really inconsistently and I can only assume I did something wrong with regards to the scene boundaries. In the end I went with writing a custom event that the pipe would fire once it detected it was out of bounds itself.

To improve on this design, I would instead look to make a specialised collision zone/region on the pipe where the gap is. This would detect when the player successfully goes through the gap and increments the score. Doing it this way would remove the dependency on fixing the player's lateral position on the screen. I'd assume there would be some performance overheads for that solution though.

Speaking of which, I'd really like to find out more about performance testing and unit testing games more. Stencyl seems to have very poor support in both areas but Haxe does have a unit testing library within it...

Sunday, 14 February 2016

Flappy Cube v0.1.1 (ewry games - Stencyl)

Very excited to have built this basic game completely from scratch!

Flappy Cube v0.1.1 - ewry games

This is a very raw version and the plan is:
  • Fix bug where "pipe" appears too off the ground.
  • Add Scoring
  • Introduce theme
  • Start the game on a separate menu screen
I'll go more into the implementation details and my experience with it all next time :)

Thursday, 11 February 2016

Stencyl Crash Course 2 - Space Invaders

Followed the 2nd Stencyl Crash Course and created a flash version of Space Invaders.

Note that you use Z to fire! The game lacks polish but it is functional. I haven't done any proper play testing or balancing, right now it feels a little too difficult. Here is a short video demonstrating the different ways to lose and win:

"Space Invaders" In Action

Tuesday, 9 February 2016

Stencyl Crash Course

Spent a night messing around with Stencyl and managed to create a basic Flash game. Sadly all you can do right now is:
  • Run/jump around
  • Kill enemies Mario style. 
  • Die by touching an enemy.
  • Die from falling off.

(click to launch Flash game)

This was adapted from the 1st Crash Course on the Stencyl website. The tutorial is very interesting and it walks you through all the major components of the game engine in less than 30 minutes.

What is ace about Stencyl is that it has an incredibly low barrier to entry. I'd imagine it would be a great tool for teaching anyone about coding/games development as you can pick it up without any prior knowledge. This also makes it ideal for graphic designers to create games when previously they might not have had the programming skills to do so.

Stencyl Behaviour Editor (Coding without the code!)