Author Topic: Outpost 2-LIKE game - Community Input requested  (Read 23030 times)

Offline dave_erald

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Re: Outpost 2-LIKE game - Community Input requested
« Reply #150 on: February 22, 2016, 11:31:54 AM »
Yeah I've only just started using Blender and can work my way around, with more practice I could do alright I think, I got some of the basics down but not an expert by any means.

This is where I am Wiki Books:Noob to Blender which is about what I am

...a Noob
I wrote a novella on this site, I can sorta code...

Outpost2 - Life at the End- 2015
Edits will show up in red

- David R.V.

Offline lordpalandus

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Re: Outpost 2-LIKE game - Community Input requested
« Reply #151 on: February 26, 2016, 11:30:29 PM »
Everyone is a noob once. Practice good sportsmanship :P
Currently working on Cataclysm of Chaos.

Offline lordpalandus

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Re: Outpost 2-LIKE game - Community Input requested
« Reply #152 on: April 09, 2016, 09:54:42 AM »
Well, its been a while since I posted an update of any kind here, so... update time!

I've been working towards creating a very basic prototype in Unreal Engine 4. I've managed to create some simple, placeholder meshes for it, and exported them in FBX format. I've imported them into a sample project, and am working on adding some functionality to them. I have run into a lot of different and varied problems, but I'm still at it. I doubt my current work will be uploaded here until I can figure out how to do selecting and deselecting at runtime. I have found a youtube user that explains how to do it, as well as other RTS concepts in UE4 (https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCIEqFMmWhxF4yA4gowhFjNA/videos?nohtml5=False). My very first prototype, will likely lack selection as its a lot harder of a concept than I originally realized, and thus the prototype will play out like an automated simulation, without user input (as without selection/deselection, user input is next to impossible, unless you hardwire specific buttons to do a specific task [ie click R to recruit a drone]), and thus this simulation would run exactly the same way every time. But, its a start, and thus that's where I'm at.

Just figured I should pop in and mention what I'm up to, so that those who are following it know that I'm still at it. When I have something that is "playable" (ie something that has proper select/deselect enabled, with possibly multiple selection as well) I'd be more than happy to upload it here for people to look at.
Currently working on Cataclysm of Chaos.

Offline Hooman

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Re: Outpost 2-LIKE game - Community Input requested
« Reply #153 on: April 11, 2016, 12:29:29 AM »
I noticed the YouTube page included a video with formation controls. Is that what you meant by unit selection? Or were you talking about the more basic band box selection of units, or click to select type functionality?

Do you have anything worth a screenshot? What about console output of code results? Or interesting snippets of code?

Offline lordpalandus

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Re: Outpost 2-LIKE game - Community Input requested
« Reply #154 on: April 11, 2016, 09:48:41 PM »
Currently I don't have anything specific worth showing at the moment. I had "something" but I accidently deleted the project, when I had meant to delete a different project, that was similarly named; will need to give my projects a meaningful name from now on to avoid this.

In Blender my meshes appeared to be complete (with all faces present; then again maybe they weren't as I was having trouble consistently being able to subdivide while other times it refused to subdivide), but when they got imported into UE4, several of them were missing faces entirely or had lighting building problems, so I'll need to rebuild most of my meshes. Which isn't a huge issue as many of them I didn't like in the first place.

For selection I had meant click selection or click deselection. Though, I will want to have marquee box selection, multi-unit selection, and formation movement at a later point, but my priority is to get mouse button selection/deselection working properly.

I messaged the creator of the videos and he suggested that all of the RTS logic can be done exclusively in Blueprints and suggested I follow along his "RTS Series" tutorials (each video is about 2-3 hours long a piece, so it might take me some time to get through them fully). He also mentioned that if I have any questions on how to do something specific in blueprints I can message him for help, which will be quite useful methinks.

Not much in way of code snippets or other visual elements. For my initial prototype I had wanted to show how key input could modify the values on the User Interface, but that didn't work. I redid the tutorial and figured out what I did wrong, so that perhaps for this week's prototype, it will have some UI numerical changes present (ie Build X object, consumes X resources, which shows up on the interface).

It looks like I will have a busy week working through tutorials, but should have something worth showing at the end of the week, screenshots, or something "playable".

EDIT: Correction, the shortest tutorial in the series is 2-3 hours in length. The longest tutorial in the series is nearly 16 hours in length. I may not be able to cover the entire series in one week.
« Last Edit: April 11, 2016, 11:22:32 PM by lordpalandus »
Currently working on Cataclysm of Chaos.

Offline Vagabond

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Re: Outpost 2-LIKE game - Community Input requested
« Reply #155 on: April 12, 2016, 10:01:27 AM »
It would be cool to see a couple of your models if you want to post some renders, even if they are not 100% yet.

Once I start spending many hours on a project, I start thinking of backup or version control. The last thing someone wants is an accidental delete or hard drive crash losing 40 hours of work.

I used to just zip my coding projects once a week and save them to an online cloud service. A lot of cloud services offer enough free space to do this without paying. Now, I typically save bigger projects to a private repository. A couple of sites offer free private repositories. I've had good success with Bitbucket in the past which allows either Git or Mercurial. Of course the downside with using a repository is that you have to learn the syntax which can be daunting while also trying to learn 3D modeling, programming, and game logic.

Looking forward to seeing your continued progress.

Offline Sirbomber

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Re: Outpost 2-LIKE game - Community Input requested
« Reply #156 on: April 12, 2016, 02:01:38 PM »
"As usual, colonist opinion is split between those who think the plague is a good idea, and those who are dying from it." - Outpost Evening Star

Outpost 2 Coding 101 Tutorials

Offline lordpalandus

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Re: Outpost 2-LIKE game - Community Input requested
« Reply #157 on: April 12, 2016, 07:32:17 PM »
Its okay, what I had wasn't all that much, so probably not a huge loss. I'm however working through the first video in RTS Series, and have setup the camera and camera movement. Will have to rewatch the first 30 minutes again though, as he mentioned a lot of interesting tidbits that I didn't have time to catch (was busy making sure I had the right nodes in the right order, as he goes fairly quickly and had to pause the video quite a bit to make sure I had the right thing). Once I'm done the tutorial, I'll figure out what each thing does so that if I need to modify it (which is likely, as he is going for more of a C&C type RTS) I'll be able to do so.

By code snippet screenshots, would a screenshot of my Blueprints and their nodes suffice? Not necessarily C++, but the scripting is based on C++ logic (and can be used interchangeably with C++). I'll likely need to change some things into actual C++ code at a later point but right now I just want something that is functional and workable; figure out if it needs optimization later on, and concern myself with optimization then, rather than now (as many such as Hooman and leeor_net have suggested that I don't worry about optimization at this point)
Currently working on Cataclysm of Chaos.

Offline Hooman

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Re: Outpost 2-LIKE game - Community Input requested
« Reply #158 on: April 13, 2016, 05:57:23 AM »
The usual response from Sirbomber I see.

It's good that you have tutorials to go through. That can be helpful. Sometimes it's nice not to just learn about some technology, but to actually see the workflow of someone using it.

I would suggest using a version control system, with a repository on a separate computer that you can push to. I've also used Bitbucket, and yes it's nice they allow free private repositories.

Offline lordpalandus

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Re: Outpost 2-LIKE game - Community Input requested
« Reply #159 on: April 13, 2016, 06:53:41 PM »
@Hooman;
The usual response? How many times has this been his response that caused him to be associated with this response as his usual response?

Well, as I said before the engine can be adapted to a RTS, but doesn't support it out of box. If I hadn't found his tutorials, it would have taken me a lot longer to create it. However, my intent is that once I understand how to make the basic foundation work, then I'll diverge and start making the game I want to make rather than copy/paste what the tutorial is doing.

Well I'll have to take a look into something like that in the future. Right now I just want to be sure I understand the fundamentals before building something of worth on top of it.

@Vagabond;
Sorry I missed your post!

I can do that, would you prefer .blend files, .fbx files, some other format, or just screenshots? I mention the other three in case you wanted to see them in 3D space. Though as my modelling skills are developing faster than my 2D texture skills, I'll likely either use a placeholder texture or leave it untextured.
Currently working on Cataclysm of Chaos.

Offline Vagabond

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Re: Outpost 2-LIKE game - Community Input requested
« Reply #160 on: April 14, 2016, 11:37:31 AM »
I would be happy looking at 2D renders. No need to send in 3D form.

Offline Hooman

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Re: Outpost 2-LIKE game - Community Input requested
« Reply #161 on: April 15, 2016, 12:29:34 AM »
Quote
@Hooman;
The usual response? How many times has this been his response that caused him to be associated with this response as his usual response?
According to search results, 3 times. Ok, so not quite as many times as I thought.

Offline Sirbomber

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Re: Outpost 2-LIKE game - Community Input requested
« Reply #162 on: April 15, 2016, 02:01:58 PM »
I think I'm owed an apology. :P
"As usual, colonist opinion is split between those who think the plague is a good idea, and those who are dying from it." - Outpost Evening Star

Outpost 2 Coding 101 Tutorials

Offline Hooman

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Re: Outpost 2-LIKE game - Community Input requested
« Reply #163 on: April 16, 2016, 01:16:23 AM »
You're right Sirbomber, I'm sorry.

Here's a link to a video apology:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dQw4w9WgXcQ

Offline lordpalandus

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Re: Outpost 2-LIKE game - Community Input requested
« Reply #164 on: April 23, 2016, 01:37:21 PM »
Well, I've been continuing to work at it. The camera controls are working now, and can Pan, Rotate, Edge Scroll, move with WASD keys, and Lock the Mouse Cursor to the screen. Been running into issues with the second tutorial, and thus haven't gotten very far with it yet. My two biggest gripes is that one, the tutorial is LONG and two, its highly disorganized, and thus the tutorial maker often makes a mistake and deletes things, and then I accidently delete the wrong thing and basically have to redo that section of the tutorial all over again. I'm about 30 minutes into the 6 hour long tutorial, and have had to repeat it three times now. However, hopefully, with enough persistence I'll get through this one as well; the tutorial covers User Interface creation, Building Placement, Ghost Buildings, and Building Selection, for those wondering what I'm working through right now.

Gameplay wise, I have "plans" for two asymmetrical factions; one plays like the Campaign-Outpost 2 (Human Faction), and one plays like the Multiplayer-Outpost 2 (AI Faction). The initial game prototype will have only the AI Faction, and play out much like Outpost 2, but without combat/conflict, so basically a city-builder like Eden Starship, but without any enemies ever attacking you. How I want it to work is that, the Human Faction must cope with Morale while the AI player does not, and if the Human Faction manages to maintain high morale, they can actually do things faster and better than the AI faction. Though, if their morale drops, they perform worse than the AI faction, and thus the player who plays as the AI Faction, will constantly try to exploit that problem by destroying civilian structures (and thus kill that player's morale). While, the AI faction has its own shortcomings that it must deal with, in particular it's "Brain" requires constant maintenance in the form of circuits (as it burns them out regularly, just like an Overclocked Computer would) and thus needs a steady supply of resources to perform this maintenance. So, the Human Player would be focused on destroying the AI player's supply lines and thus attempt to blockade them and kill them by attrition from lack of maintenance.

I realize that this will mean that I will have a Design Document #3 (DD3), as this changes quite a bit of my original ideas. Many of my original ideas from DD1 and DD2 will return, but as each faction will function quite differently gameplay wise, changes need to be made.
« Last Edit: April 23, 2016, 01:39:40 PM by lordpalandus »
Currently working on Cataclysm of Chaos.

Offline Hooman

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Re: Outpost 2-LIKE game - Community Input requested
« Reply #165 on: April 27, 2016, 05:09:11 AM »
Sounds like a good amount of progress. Also sounds like you have something rudimentary to look at now. Anything worth a screenshot? I guess what you're describing is more suitable for a video though.

Offline lordpalandus

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Re: Outpost 2-LIKE game - Community Input requested
« Reply #166 on: April 29, 2016, 04:52:30 PM »
I could look into providing some screenshots of blueprint graphs if you liked, but as for visuals there isn't really anything to see yet. I'll give a screenshot of what I mean by that so you can judge for yourself. By the end of this tutorial I'm doing, I should have something visual to see, but right now, its mostly just setting up the foundation.

Edit:
Image "ViewportNotPlaying" = In this image you can see a simple, flat mesh with a terrain texture applied to it. The four textureless boxes are called "Bounding Volumes"; these act as invisible walls so that things on the flat terrain mesh won't be able to leave or fall into the infinite abyss all around it.

Image "ViewportPlaying" = Here you simply see a placeholder sphere mesh that helps in bugtesting to make sure that the various camera controls are working and to ensure that the mesh changes position properly on both your client and on another person's client. Later on, this sphere will be removed but is simply used for now to prove that the camera controls work; later it will be replaced with units and structures that will be selected instead.

So, yah, not much to look at the moment. But, hopefully with diligent effort I should have something to show later, visual wise. Still having problems with Blender to UE4 import process with problems with the meshes, so not quite sure what the problem is there, so not going to show off any of my meshes until I know for sure that they will import properly into UE4.
« Last Edit: April 30, 2016, 12:31:50 AM by lordpalandus »
Currently working on Cataclysm of Chaos.

Offline Hooman

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Re: Outpost 2-LIKE game - Community Input requested
« Reply #167 on: May 10, 2016, 09:16:08 PM »
Ahh, interesting. Thanks for the screenshots.

Is there a reason the bounding volumes overlap? How did you determine the height of the invisible walls? Will there be a way to create randomized powerful combined explosions, that just might have the strength to send something over the wall, sending it tumbling down into the infinite abyss?

Offline lordpalandus

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Re: Outpost 2-LIKE game - Community Input requested
« Reply #168 on: May 11, 2016, 10:16:14 PM »
Well, the reason they overlap is because that's how the tutorial maker did them, so I merely replicated that. However, you can definitely increase the height, width, and length of them to prevent such an eventuality. But, I'd think the best way to address that kind of issue (of sufficient force applied to objects) is to do what most games do with invisible walls; have the invisible walls say 10% away from the edge of the map, so that if something did have sufficient strength, it should still land within bounds. Or just have really, really high mountains. I would say that having really high bounding volumes might break immersion when you see a seemingly open area and see an object blown up collide into thin air and then drop to the ground.

Well, with sufficient force I have found that one can overcome extremely high bounding volumes anyway. There is a FPS barebones project where the ball (ball gun) hits with force to move cubes around and if you add enough force to the impact, those cubes go flying. So its probable. How to prevent it entirely could be a matter of boxing in things with a top-layer bounding volume (to seal everything in) or to limit the amount of force applied to objects from an explosion. Realistically, most objects wouldn't have enough force to launch objects very far... unless it was a nuclear explosion or hilarious ragdoll physics (ie Skyrim).
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Offline Hooman

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Re: Outpost 2-LIKE game - Community Input requested
« Reply #169 on: May 12, 2016, 06:45:22 AM »
I approve of "hilarious ragdoll physics".

The ceiling idea should work. A reasonably high ceiling of course. Then if someone manages to somehow take out the walls we can have a Chicken Little effect.  ;)

Offline Vagabond

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Re: Outpost 2-LIKE game - Community Input requested
« Reply #170 on: May 12, 2016, 06:24:08 PM »
lordpalandus,

Thanks for posting the screenshots. I missed them earlier.

You could write code that removes any objects that manage to escape your bounding volumes. This would prevent errant objects off screen from causing bugs.

You could also have disposable objects like projectiles disappear when they touch a bounding volume to make it appear as though they traveled off the visible map instead of exploding when hitting the bounding box. Unless your units fly an unusual distance, they could probably just 'bounce off' the bounding volume or stop moving when touching the bounding volume and not look too bad.

Offline lordpalandus

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Re: Outpost 2-LIKE game - Community Input requested
« Reply #171 on: May 13, 2016, 12:59:13 AM »
@Hooman; Yes, a reasonably high ceiling would likely work.

@Vagabond; Well, similar to a bounding volume, you can have other forms of volumes that could trigger an OnOverlapEvent, where bullets/projectiles would simply disappear, so its very likely code could be fairly easily written to accomplish that task. So, how I'd see something like that working, is to have first a bounding volume that prevents most things from leaving, while allowing projectiles to pass through it (so they don't appear to just hit an invisible wall) and then disappear afterwards.

----

I'm keeping at it, and continue to make progress with the tutorials I'm following, but more importantly, I'm actually understanding things, and figuring out ways of adapting some of the current systems to do other things. As an example, in the tutorial, it uses a scaling box to show a list of units or structures when the appropriate button is clicked or the structure clicked (just like in any C&C game if you need a visual reference for that; the tutorial hasn't covered how to create the list yet, so I don't have a screenshot of it yet). My idea is to use a similar listing+scaling box to do the research tree, where the tree can expand (as topics get researched, more becomes available OR expandable for modders to add in new research topics and have the game's research tree visually scale appropriately) or contract (as you finish off the research tree, the list might shrink in size until all available topics can be seen on the screen without scrolling). So, even though at times its frustrating (the guy rambles a lot and gets off topic a lot) I am comprehending things enough to realize how things might be adaptable for other purposes.

I do want to eventually have something playable (functionally playable at least) for people to try out. A growing trend in the games industry is the importance of having UX (User Experience) involved in helping a game be the best it can be. Many sites (that discuss UX) suggest that getting it as earlier as possible is extremely important so that major problems with interface or gameflow can be addressed early on when its easier to fix them; plus its suggested that UX can help a developer find bugs in the code that they didn't know existed. I know there is a risk in a showing off something when it is in such an early stage (first impressions, right?) but I feel the benefit of getting early UX is better in the long-run. Afterall, if suggestions make the UI a lot better, and just the UI (not considering all the other benefits of UX) that can really help make or break a game. Since the UI is one of the key things that reduces complexity of the user. Thus having a good UI aids a player in understanding the game by making everything more intuitive, reduces the learning curve, and makes making complex decisions a lot easier.

But, I may have a long way to go before I have something playable. BUT I WILL GET THERE! ... Eventually. :)

Currently working on Cataclysm of Chaos.

Offline Hooman

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Re: Outpost 2-LIKE game - Community Input requested
« Reply #172 on: May 14, 2016, 12:36:28 AM »
Sounds good so far. It's fun seeing your updates on this.

Offline CK9

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Re: Outpost 2-LIKE game - Community Input requested
« Reply #173 on: June 27, 2016, 10:00:17 PM »
Haven't read through th whole thread yet, but wanted to congratulate you on your dedication (If I'm not mistaken this is the longest running project so far?).

If you're still open to suggestions, I would recommend going beyond just an Outpost 2 -esque point in the story line.  I don't know how anyone else feels about this, but I think it would be an interesting idea to have it start out with the death of Earth instead of having it just a part of history.  I feel this gives the player a chance to feel more connected with the story and more of a reason to choose one side of the conflict over the other as it develops instead of being present with "oh, we have philosophical differences that pre-date you.  Choose a side."
CK9 in outpost
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srentiln in minecraft (I like legos, and I like computer games...it was only a matter of time...) and youtube...
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yup, I have too many screen names

Offline leeor_net

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Re: Outpost 2-LIKE game - Community Input requested
« Reply #174 on: June 28, 2016, 12:13:17 AM »
*cough* OutpostHD *cough*
- Leeor
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