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  Vangard  (Read 165077 times)
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Offline philfrei
« Reply #210 - Posted 2016-03-29 22:05:11 »

I was more concerned about zombies and spells to set your foe on fire by mumbling the alphabet in reverse order.
It is often very important to get the order/reverse order thing correct. The spell for making a Golem from mud can turn the person who speaks the spell into mud if the wrong order is used.

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Offline ags1

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« Reply #211 - Posted 2016-03-29 22:07:54 »

Yes, zombies don't quite fit the viking theme. But did you know the Norse idea of a ghost was the dead corpse physically getting up and walking around? I could use the term Walking Dead, but might run into copyright issues. Some of the spells are quite Disney but I will evolve the list... At the moment I can tie about half of the spells to period sources.

But you're right I think, less is more in this case. Halving the number of spells will give more character to the game, as well as saving me a shedload of code.  Smiley

Offline philfrei
« Reply #212 - Posted 2016-03-29 22:11:01 »

Walking living-challenged.

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Offline ags1

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« Reply #213 - Posted 2016-04-02 11:18:55 »

Bugs, bugs, bugs... Graah! One thing game programming has taught me is to use the debugger. At work I mostly do client server code so stepping through a debugger just invites timeouts, but in a game everything in nicely self-contained and finding the perfect breakpoint is a pleasure.

@Riven I took your advice and cut down my spell list to around 18 entries. There are no attacking spells left - only shapeshifting, illusion, and various kinds of healing and body magic. Getting the AIs to use illusions properly is going to be a challenge...

Offline ags1

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« Reply #214 - Posted 2016-04-03 17:34:23 »

Hunters no longer randomly shoot themselves Smiley

Root cause analysis: copy-pasting code.

Offline ags1

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« Reply #215 - Posted 2016-04-04 20:12:15 »

Disease outbreaks cause localized spikes in demand for healing products at marketplaces. In order to meet demand, I have to implement a basic inter-market trading mechanism, so markets can import high-demand items from other markets. To enhance market liquidity, items will teleport from market to market.

Another bug solved: Vangardians now correctly estimate the cost of items in the nearby marketplaces.

Offline ags1

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« Reply #216 - Posted 2016-04-06 18:59:31 »

Spent the afternoon creating half the runic alphabet in vector graphics. I'm trying them out as cryptic tab headings in the UI:



I might upscale the images slightly so they are not so heavily pixelated.

While doing this I added the ability to load one vector graphics file in different colors, rather than having to define a vector graphic for each color.

Offline ags1

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« Reply #217 - Posted 2016-04-07 21:05:58 »

I connected the health bars to the player character so they are not placeholders any more. In addition to the health and stamina bars I added a power (magic) bar and an experience bar. Rather than clutter the user interface with labels, you can click the health bars to show the label and text readout.



I also added a carousel widget to my arsenal so that you can click the carousel to cycle through categories, for example in the new marketplace right-hand sidebar (so you can filter for weapons, armor, clothes, food etc) or in the Social view where you can click the Ranking carousel to see how your character stacks up against the AIs:



Currently, the most Experienced ranking is being shown, if you click the >> carousel, it switches to the next category, Most Wealthy.

Here is a view of the market sidebar on the right. Currently it pops up automatically when you get to a market.


Offline Drenius
« Reply #218 - Posted 2016-04-09 23:23:53 »

[requested dummy post]
Offline ags1

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« Reply #219 - Posted 2016-04-10 13:22:46 »

Thanks Drenius. I started this thread 9 months ago, so it's about time I put up a demo.

I would appreciate it if anyone could download it and give their opinions of the enhanced UI.

https://bitbucket.org/aclarke/headline-distribution/downloads/vangard.jar

In this version:

 - A ton of user interface work, including repository views, minimap, powerbars now have rollover text, I use multiple fonts, market trading, stashing at house, collecting from unowned entities

 - numerous stability fixes and resolution of multithreading issues

 - many new AI behaviors like CombatBehavior, ForagingBehavior, DoRecipeBehavior...

Controls:

 - to change game speed [ and ]

 - to zoom in and out: - and +

 - to switch between stats, combat, inventory, minimap, social and debug UIs, mouseover the runes at top left.

 - put player character on autopilot (AI takes over): Shift-A

 - to switch player control to a neighboring entity (you can only switch to entities that can move): Shift-S

 - to view an accessible inventory (e.g. market, home or apple tree): collide with the entity, this opens a right hand view showing the inventory of the neighboring entity

 - to stash at home: go to hovel, open the player inventory view and click the items to drop in the home, likewise click on the right to pick up the items again

 - to collect apples: walk to apple tree, and click the apples you want to collect.

 - same interaction at the market except you can get money from putting items in the market and pay (more) to get them out.




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Offline matheus23

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« Reply #220 - Posted 2016-04-10 20:24:53 »

Instead of a dummy post here just some of my sauce:

I really like how you focus your time on gameplay instead of fancy graphics, tbh the game looks really cool with this vector art anyway Smiley

I also like the idea of having a dynamic world with people simulated. I would really like them to also build stuff, build villages, change the world. There is this really cool feeling, when you've been to a place, and after some time visit it again and notice how it changed. Would love to see this in your game Smiley

TLDR; like your approach, like the game idea.

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Offline kingroka123
« Reply #221 - Posted 2016-04-11 00:31:44 »

Really cool concept. Pointing The player rotation is way too slow. If you speed it up, it would be much more enjoyable to play.
Offline ags1

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« Reply #222 - Posted 2016-04-11 05:41:46 »

Thanks for the encouraging comments. Fine control of rotation versus speed is a balance I have struggled with. Next thing to add is moving to mouse clicks, which would allow instant rotation and very fine control simultaneously.

@mattheus23, the goal is that eventually social structure, politics and villages will be dynamic. Vangardians should be able to move from one settlement to another and chietains should be able to do a bit of town planning. Kings, queens, earls and chieftains should all be able to fight battles with each other to add further settlements to their sphere of influence. I want to add some additional Vangardians living in the wild (i.e. outside of settlements) and these would be able to start new settlements and/or supplement their income with a bit of robbing.

Also, Vangardians should be able to change career, so the village beggar might one day be a powerful character. Or the beggar might once have been powerful Smiley

May I ask how you found the UI? Was it responsive enough? Did it make sense?

Offline philfrei
« Reply #223 - Posted 2016-04-24 02:38:54 »

I gave the program a go a few days ago. It took me a while to figure out what I was doing, and I still have questions. But overall, it was intriguing and seems like it must be working as designed.

The first time I tried it, I didn't have your summary instructions and really floundered. I didn't figure out that the center sprite was the one being controlled. I couldn't tell that anything was happening when the arrow keys were pressed, as there is a lot of movement going on at the same time. For example, hitting the up arrow (I now know) moves you "forward" but given that the AI or whatever might be pointing you in any direction, it is hard to pick out the right movement and infer the control. Or at least, it was for me. Also I expected the down arrow to allow backwards movements. And I mistakenly was expecting the keys to be left/right/up/down, not rotate/forward.

Second time, I had reviewed your instructions and I figured out a lot more. But was stumped by trying to pick an apple off of a tree. Third attempt, I realized that the interaction is via the menus that pop up, not clicks on the countryside depiction. I'm not sure how you find your hovel if you forget where it is. I guess, by giving control back to the AI and letting it go back to home?

Now, after having picked and sold a few apples, I am wondering about the character I was started with. As far as I can tell it sleeps at its hovel, then goes to the market and hangs out there doing ??, and then goes home and sleeps again. I was not able to observe its profession or get anywhere when trying to buy a shovel and go mining or farming. So, I remain puzzled as to how I might add value to whatever the AI is already doing for my character.

I guess the next step is to go watch several different characters, and learn what is going on that way.

I think the graphics are functioning quite well. I like them. I look forward to seeing how this neat project develops.

music and music apps: http://adonax.com
Offline ags1

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« Reply #224 - Posted 2016-04-24 14:30:58 »

Thanks for the feedback!

I have not put any real effort into player-world interctivity (aka playability) as my time has been chewed up by AI. So after you have collected a few apples there is not much to do. I have shifted focus away from AI now to the user interface and adding in hopefully fun elements, so by the end of the year there may be more of a game here.

Regarding finding home, I will add a popup menu item for that.

Offline ags1

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« Reply #225 - Posted 2016-05-09 10:52:26 »

I have been a bit distracted by a side project to build a hnefatafl AI, putatively for a game-in-a-game mode where you can play tafl with other Vangardians for wagers or renown. It doesn't all have to be about fighting... Smiley

But I do continue to work on Vangard itself. I took some steps to simplify the code by removing the concept of quality levels on items (actually, the code is all still there, but everything has a quality of 0 for now). The logic of buying, selling and inventory management was too troublesome for the AIs in cases where they had to take care of quality issues too.

With quality out of the picture a number of tricky bugs have been neutralized (of course, they are still there). I've got plenty of bugs to fix, so suppressing a few for the time being can only help.

I have added move-to-mouse click, eliminating the slow sprite rotation issue, and I also have a pop-up radial context menu working.

The number of item types and recipes in the game has been expanded as well.

Offline ags1

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« Reply #226 - Posted 2016-05-12 21:43:11 »

Here is the popup menu in action:


Offline J0
« Reply #227 - Posted 2016-05-13 14:38:32 »

It looks great! Just a minor remark: honestly, I don't like your sword icon Smiley I reckon the edges should be straight with just a triangle at their end.

Offline Herjan
« Reply #228 - Posted 2016-05-14 09:31:09 »

I have been a bit distracted by a side project to build a hnefatafl AI, putatively for a game-in-a-game mode where you can play tafl with other Vangardians for wagers or renown. It doesn't all have to be about fighting... Smiley

But I do continue to work on Vangard itself.

...

I also have a pop-up radial context menu working.

I love a few mini-games in games. Tafl seems to be a really cool game to play.

Tafl is part of vanguard, so why do you apologize? Wink

...

Really cool to see that radial menu implemented!
Offline ags1

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« Reply #229 - Posted 2016-05-15 15:25:13 »

Thanks for the encouragement! I like minigames too, partly because they are an authentic part of the world, but also it lets me write other kinds of games while working on a project that will take years.

I'm apologizing not for spending time on tafl but because it's widening the scope further on a project with already pretty unrealistic goals.

Herjan, regarding the radial menu I have not implemented all your suggestions yet. For example it is two clicks to open the menu and then select an action, so I need to add in your neat suggestion to either execute the default, or drag to select the desired option. another issue is the entities are pretty small so it can be fiddly clicking them, particularly at high game speed.

J0, the icon is a dagger, not a sword - but a sword would look better and more chunky like the other icons, so i'll make the change. A dagger can point down, but a sword should point up.

I should have a new demo up by the end of the month. I want it to include complete combat (currently only ranged combat is implemented) and domesticated beasts. I want the village beggar to have a dog, and travelling traders need a mule to carry their merchandise. I might go all out and eventually give the peasants sheep, pigs and cows.

To make combat worthwhile, I might add these monsters to the game (otherwise you can only whack civilians):

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Draugr

I had to work on the buying and selling logic and it seems to have added 10% to logic frame times so I need to work on performance. My rough benchmark is that my AMD A10 laptop has to maintain 50 logic frames per second on battery, and I've edged over that now.

Offline J0
« Reply #230 - Posted 2016-05-15 18:18:19 »

Can we hope for a lot of other interesting creatures in further builds? Smiley
And also cool gods & goddesses Wink
Making games based on mythologies is interesting af hahah

J0 Smiley

Edit: I looked up tafl and I think it's a really nice thing to have in your game! What's more, I actually found out about Ard Ri, a Scottish variant, so I may implement it as a minigame in my own project! So thanks for mentioning that Wink

Offline ClaasJG

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« Reply #231 - Posted 2016-05-16 11:15:10 »

I actually like the dagger. I thought 'neat all icons have an arrow shaped form pointing from the center point outwards'  persecutioncomplex
-ClaasJG

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Offline J0
« Reply #232 - Posted 2016-05-16 12:59:31 »

I actually like the dagger. I thought 'neat all icons have an arrow shaped form pointing from the center point outwards'
A good point indeed.

Offline ags1

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« Reply #233 - Posted 2016-05-19 10:54:29 »

Currently all animals and plants are hard-coded, so I am working on a new loader to import the creature definitions from a file. I do find when I move part of the application out of hard-coding into an asset file, code quality and ags1 productivity both shoot up. I need a limited set of animals:

Predators: Bears, wolves, foxes, snakes
Herbivores: Deer, rabbits, wild boars
Birds: Eagles, owls, crows, doves, ducks
Trees: oaks, apples, pines, yews
Personal animals: Dogs, mules, horses, cats
Livestock: Cows, sheeps, chickens, pigs

I am tempted to add mammoths (they went extinct in Midgard, but perhaps they live on in Vangard)? They would just be a very large antisocial cow with a trample attack Smiley

Also, the villages need children who are just nonfunctional decorations. They could be defined as animals too Smiley

On the subject of minigames, I would also like to add brawling/wrestling which was a popular activity at fairs, and also gambling on the outcome of wrestling matches (a minigame in a minigame?).

Offline ags1

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« Reply #234 - Posted 2016-06-12 22:37:49 »

I took a "short" detour into adding a schema for my creatures.treeml file so that it can stay consistent and I can split the file up in the future. Anyway, here is the creature schema (d being a hack):

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creature: empty, d
   id: single, token
   name: single, string
   description : single, string
   icon : single, empty
      width : single, decimal
      length : single, decimal
      color : single, list, decimal
   size : single, decimal
   toughness : single, decimal
   adult : single, optional, empty
      token : integer, single //cow : 30 (days)
   dead : single, optional, empty
      token : string, d //bearCorpse : "Bear corpse"
   decays : single, optional, integer
   rotting : single, optional, empty
      token : string, d // rottingBearCorpse : "Rotting bear corpse"
   disappears : single, optional, integer
   armor : single, optional, integer
   experience: single, integer
   status: single, integer
   reputation: single, integer
   alignment: single, optional, integer
   easyToKill: single, optional, boolean
   inventorySize: single, optional, integer
   attributes : single, empty
      strength : single, integer
      constitution : single, integer
      dexterity : single, integer
      cunning : single, integer
      willpower : single, integer
      empathy : single, integer
   parts : single, empty
      token : integer, d //bearBlood : 1
   produces : single, empty
      token : d, decimal //milk : 1
   skills : single, empty
      token : integer, d //foraging : 4
   behaviors: list, token
   attacks : single, optional, empty
      token : integer, d //claw : 12

Offline Icecore
« Reply #235 - Posted 2016-06-13 10:16:50 »

Anyway, here is the creature schema (d being a hack):
It will be very hard to support and edit if you have more then 100 such files.
Better solution custom editor, where you can sort by in game params like DMG, without opening 100 files manually in notepad

i made this long time ago)

it looks cool but, hard to maintain on big project,
up: yes its parses to engine data, not simple txt file ^^

then i convert to excel, and its same hard manually resolve reference.)

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Offline ags1

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« Reply #236 - Posted 2016-06-13 11:09:31 »

With my background, I am more productive with a simple editor (Intellij), a schema and max 30 files for 5-6 schemas. Definitely do NOT want a custom editor - that is too rigid.

Offline Icecore
« Reply #237 - Posted 2016-06-13 11:18:01 »

Definitely do NOT want a custom editor - that is too rigid.
It no so hard as it looks like, Its not Unreal engine Wink

You already have gui an in game param reference
Make table draw from params Database
And for text (value) change you can use clipboard – don’t need write own text editor )
Ctrl-C copy select param, Ctrl-V past and show result if some errors =)

+need save/load final params Database to file

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Offline ags1

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Make code not war!


« Reply #238 - Posted 2016-06-13 12:15:27 »

I can see what you are saying but it doesn't fit well with the way I work. I positively like simple text files that are free of editors. If I do have an editor it will be an IntelliJ plugin for the text files, which is something I want to write at some point. It's pretty easy to see how the schema above can become a code completion feature or a "New Entity" template.

Offline BinaryMonkL

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« Reply #239 - Posted 2016-06-13 21:01:02 »

Totally excellent idea!

Something that would add a whole bunch of enjoyment and atmosphere with relatively little effort is sound Cheesy

Definitely going to stay tuned to this one.
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