So I am early days into my new project. I have a lot of the mechanics working 100%. Im not going to reveal what the premise is but maybe you can figure it out.
The art is all placeholder. I am going to comission an artist to do all the art for the game. Fortunately there isnt much that needs to be done.
I will be releasing the game on ios and android. Any questions leave a comment or Follow me on twitter
Heres one more for good measure
I've been working on a video demonstrating dynamic weather and a night and day cycle in unity. I've edited the video to speed up once the snow stops.
To get day and night cycle effect create a c# script and add this line of code to the update function.
transform.Rotate(Vector3.right * Time.deltaTime);
Then drop the script onto your spotlight. This will rotate the spotlight on the X axis at 1 degree per second.
You could also add an animation to the directional light in unity and rotating it 360 degrees over 2-4 minutes. For a longer cycle just rotate it over a longer time. This method uses up more memory than the code.
If anyone wants a video tutorial on how to do it I willl happily make one if there is interest. Keep in mind you need the PRO version of unity.
If anyone wants to have a walk around and see it in real time they can click this link. Keep in mind the area is not finished.
So we released Savvy Bear finally on the 24th September to the Apple app store. We are overall pleased with the app as it is now but it most definitely is not finished.
Before going into our plans for the app I’m going to talk about the submission procedure briefly. Submitting to apple can be a huge pain for anyone that has done it they will know and for anyone who is going to do it anytime in the future then be warned it is a lot of work.
First of all as detailed as apples instructions are they are not suitable for every submission. We made our app in flash and Adobe are actually pretty great, they include a lot of the stuff needed to submit in Flash itself. The likes of icons etc. The apple instructions went on a bit about using xcode which we never used at all but building up to submission we were confused in the office about what we needed xcode for. Turns out we only needed xcode and a mac to send the app over to apple once everything else was done.
Once all the little details where done and we sent it over it was just a waiting game. Apple took 6 working days to get back to us about the app. They rejected it at first due to their new rules regarding kids games and privacy policies. So we fixed the legal mumbo jumbo and resubmitted. After exactly 6 working days again the app came back as approved and all that was left was to fill in bank details and choose our contract and less than an hour later it was up on the app store and obviously the first thing I did once it was downloaded was find a bug but at least it wasn’t game breaking :-o so it will be fixed with a simple update.
That was a bit of a surprise once it was approved how quick it went up. When initially submitted we chose a release date of Sept 16th but it was rejected before that date. We thought we might get to choose a new date but instead once approved it went live fairly quickly which we were fine with as we just wanted it out there.
So going forward October is a big month for us. We will start marketing the app. Our marketing team are finalising details of the marketing campaign so hopefully the app will take off. We want it in schools around the world asap. In terms of developing the app we have big expansive updates planned that will make the game a whole lot better. I can’t go into the details about our features planned but they are very cool and very exciting so we are all looking forward to driving on with it but our next step is to port the app to android devices and iPhones.
I know it is a bit late doing a write up on the windows game jam held in the Microsoft offices but I flew to Spain 8 hours after the event and was too tired after to do a write up about it.
The event itself was a lot of fun. An early start in the fantastic and impressive Microsoft offices. We were welcomed at the door with fresh muffins which was a nice touch. Diarmuid Murphy of Microsoft who organised the event was there to greet everyone.
Our team had a solid plan in place for what we wanted to make. We wanted to start from scratch and make a new game. We knew we would be competing for top prize with people who were just porting already made games which made it difficult for us but we we’re there for the challenge and the fun.
Our team consisted of me (programme/design), Emma Kenny (artist), Ethan Campbell (Music/Sfx) and Darren Murphy (level design). Once we had finished chatting to various other developers and got set up on the wi fi and all our tools opened up on our pc’s an hour had already passed so I was way behind already. Luckily Emma, our artist was stuck in straight away as she had a lot of work ahead of her.
The day was broken up well with memorable talks from Jamie McCormack of Scraggly Dog Games and Flashpoint as well as talks from John griffen of Gamesparks about their new cloud based service for game developers which was very interesting and definitely one to watch in the future.
We started by making the first level and building from there.We made the game in Construct2 which I love using for jams as it is quick and easy for 2d games. Even though we had a plan in place we still had to decide on the puzzles for each level. The concept of the game was that we would have a cute character in a colourful world who grows up through life learning various life lessons. The player has to make various decisions in his life and each one will affect him in the future.
In terms of developing the structure we did really well. The art was very solid and the core of the game is there. In the end we got 3 levels that have various different scenarios. We settled on calling the character patch as he is a pillow made up of patches that walks around. Then we settled on calling the game “The Life of Patch”
Once time was up we definitely could have used another hour or two but overall we were happy with what we had. The judges went to every team and reviewed their games. Now we play the waiting game.
The overall winner was Raw Games for their game “ The Driven Dead”. A high quality driving game made in Unity (if im not mistaken). Our game won best art so well done to Emma Kenny. Special shout out to “Ninja Fight” and “Space Racer 3186” which were my personal favourite games.
Overall the day was a success, how could it not be with free pizza and drinks for lunch. I hope this becomes a common thing where major companies host game jams. I believe it encourages development and can also open your eyes to new platforms to build for.
I’d love to hear anyone else’s opinion of the jam or any questions feel free to drop me a line.
Also play our build of the game here on Chrome. LIFE OF PATCH
Summer is ending (insert sad face here) and so is the development of the Savvy Bear app. We are hoping to submit the app this coming Monday providing all goes well.
Developing this app has been a great experience and has only fueled my desire to develop games. Being able to develop this app as a full time job has been a dream come true and finally all the hard work put in over the last few years is starting to really pay off.
My advice to anyone who is trying to get into the games industry and is currently studying in any type of course that relates to game dev like computer science or even SFX and wants a job is to get yourself out there immediately. I was given this advice and that's what I done. Show your work to everyone, ask anyone in the industry that you meet "is there any internships going". Even if you are just sitting and watchin in an internship you will learn so much. More than you could ever learn on college.
You must engrose yourself in the work, show passion and dedication and these companies will take a liking to you and see you are a good prospect. When I did my internship in the summer of 2012 I was delighted how it went and sad when it ended. I worked hard. I went in on days when no other development staff where in and worked just to show how much I wanted it. 6 months later I got a call saying the company where hiring and there i was with a full time job in game development while studying game development part time.
Also throughout the summer I have been developing Nee and the Thaw for the chrome browser. this was a completely different experience as we had free reign over the design. I found it difficult to balance the two with deadlines. I would definitely be a fan of working on my own for side projects rather than under a deadline with a team. Sometimes you just want to sleep when work has to be done.
The team I worked with, Darren Murphy and Colin Kirwan were great. Colin is a great artist and Darren knows a lot about level design. He is the one to blame for how hard Nee is. Overall the project went really well and I'm happy with how it turned out.
That brings me back to now. As I said the Savvy Bear app is nearly done and the team are very excited to see it released. A big marketing push and hopefully you will see the Savvy brand everywhere.
Over and out peeps. Follow me on twitter @JamieGameDev
_I have to start off by saying what a wonderful fufilling experience it is developing games. It took me a long time to decide I wanted to make games because I hated every job I've ever had. I hated getting up every morning and going to work doing the same thing every day. Even in aircraft maintenance working on 737's and Airbus I hated how mundane and routine it was. This gave me a fear that if I got into developing games well then in turn over time I would hate that and hate playing them even though playing video games is one of my favourite things to do. One day I decided to just go for it. I eventually figured I could never hate something I loved so much so I bit the bullet and signed up to the full time development course in Pulse College and haven't looked back since.
Fizzball is a basic physics based puzzle game where you get the ball from its start location to the sparkling spiral located somewhere in each level but instead of controlling the ball you control the level by rotating clockwise and anti-clockwise. The project we were issued by Owen was basically make a game in Unity with a "science theme". I figured physics was science so I was already on my way. I had already had the idea for the game in my head so I was good to go. I played alot of ClearCut games "Cado" on the iPhone which has a similar mechanic to mine with a very different art style which can be seen here (Cado Trailer) . Cado is possibly my favourite game on the iPhone and I recommend everyone download it now.
The very first snag I came accross when starting my prototype was the unity collisions. My sphere collider was constantly going through the mesh colliders. It seemed ok with the box colliders but what I discovered from various ways of research was the frames were moving faster than the ball. When explained to me I was thinking "this is madness, the ball is there, the wall is there, ball hit wall now. " Alas this was not the case, what I didn't understand was when something in the Unity engine moves it takes a frame makes it disapear and reapear in another location but to the naked eye it looks like a fluid movement. When I finally got my head around it I figured out the best solution was in the unity settings to increase the thickness of the skin of each object making it harder for the wall to simply pass through the object. This may not have been the best solution but it worked for me.
Once I got that down it was just a case of level design and coding in the triggers for win lose and lose rule. As this is my first real project that I have been working on myself i have to say I am really excited. It may not be the best game ever but it's my game. I made this from scratch which brings me back to my first point of how fufilling this feels to create something. How could I ever hate this :-)
You can play a build of 3 of the levels in "Fizzball" here
Also below is a preview of level 4. I have also added music and sound and I will upload a build soon.
Follow me on Twitter.