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Oliver “nGFX” Sons
Works at Gaming Your Way
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Quick draft of another character animation. The gif is a bit jumpy, because I cut out the frames between the clips in photoshop rather than doing it correctly.

There's still a good deal of work left (polygon reduction anyone?)

Anyway it's good enough for setting up the character ...
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Cheers. Let's see how setting up mecanim will turn out.
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After today's client based ... chores ... nah ... tasks, I think I'll implement the "subtitles"  for showing your characters reply to an action.

It's either speech bubbles (staying true to the kind of comic book look I'm after) or plain coloured text (a la Lucas Arts). Whatever it will be, there also will be a textlog that can be opened, so if you - like me - tend to click away in long conversations, you can re-read it later.

Not sure how this will turn out in the end (if it's limited to x lines or saves a file to disk, has filters (locations, people)).
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I feel the pain at times ...

On a lighter note, I will be writing a parser today that will translate

'flag[switch1==on&&key2==inventory]'

into a nice boolean true or false - and if things go right the other way round where

'flag[switch1:off];fsm[roomlight,uselight]'

sets the flag and runs a statemachine. I'll report back.


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Yay!
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I'm still testing which are the options to handle interactive props in scenes (like lights, which are not actually part of a puzzle)

There are several options, each with a good deal of more cons than pros.

First I tried playmaker , which is in a way the easiest method so far:
pro:
just click together some states and call them from your code

con:
mixing elements isn't really possible, so you end up with one FSM per prop (ie: lights, door, drawer). While this isn't a bad thing per se, it sure doesn't make things any cleaner.


Next was using Unity's build in animation system and mecanim.
pro:
- built in
- works with every property that can be animated

con:
- while easy to setup, it requieres an ugly amount of clicking and setting up after the animations are created
- as with playmaker mixing elements (ie: door and lights) is neither a good idea nor anywhere near comfortable to set up
- having one animator file per object (plus animation files if needed) might create a shitload of files in the end


code and some tweens (also via code)
pro:
- don't think, just write

con:
- having a piece of code just for turning on / off some lights doesn't appeal me at all (especially as it's not as reusable as you might think, because each scene may have a completely different light setup)
- write, compile, test? Not really.

conclusion
Well, I have none yet. Each of these sucks in a way, but for this test scene I'll go with mecanim with some code blended in
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In the end playmaker won, btw.

I set up the lights in mecanim and made a transition between "night" and "lights on".
But using animation didn't turn off / on the lights instantly, so for a frame or so all lights were on (which created something that looked like a flash).

Using playmaker proved to be the much easier way to do it (and a working one), especially as this is just a test scene to set up the framework.
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Finally finished the last one of the modular town houses. I think I'll have to get back to coding tonight.
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Today's ToDo list includes ...
- writing a "dependency" class, that sets up a scene and waits until all elements are initialized
- reading up on Unity's "new" gui system and decide weather to use this or NGUI (because I already have written a set of working helper classes like "tooltips" for NGUI)
- making the hand cursor work within the scene either using legacy or mecanim animation
- create a menu mock up and maybe make it work

... and an awful lot more
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I love books, 60s photography and surfing, so this one is a tripple.
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I just couldn't resist ...
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Some game genres are not made for prototyping. On the plus side there's a quite versatile framework lurking to be unleashed.

There's still a good deal of work left and there will be shortcuts for the actions menu (so maybe right-click to "use") but for now it has to work this way.

Next thing will be the display of messages as result of an action and then it's time to add character movement and delayed actions (ie: first moving to the object before performing "use").
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As an old collector once said to me: "You never have enough storage space."

I can confirm he was right, because I'm #RunningOutOfSpace  .
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which means "probably never" ;-)
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Sorry, +Unity  but mecanim SUCKS badly for non-humanoid animations.

Honestly the mecaim documents are next to unusable, and I'm NOT willing to view hours of videos just to get started with that.

The mecanim approach for generic rigs is the most counter intuitive thing I came across for ages.

Legacy animation it is now. FFS.
 
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I spent the last nights avoiding code, but I did build these ...
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Have them in circles
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Ed Smith's profile photo
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Basic Information
Other names
nGFX
Story
Tagline
Making games or something
Introduction
Developing for web, .NET, Unity and Flash
Bragging rights
Co founder of GamingYourWay and Dry Goods Ltd.
Work
Occupation
game / web developer
Skills
code, 3d, UI ...
Employment
  • Gaming Your Way
    Co-Founder, present
  • Dry Goods Ltd.
    Co-Founder, present
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