Wednesday, August 13, 2014

"Off the Wall" - Session 2

My apologies for my last blog post, I was rather impatient.  More or less, I was just slapping code wherever I felt it might do something.

I gave "Off the Wall" a bit more thought today, and finally made a final decision as to what the game is going to be:

Granted, this is what the first level might look like.

The concept I'm going after crosses Pinball with your every-day platforming game.  The idea is that when the player jumps into a wall, they will ricochet off, traveling at a constant speed until the next wall-bounce, where their speed will increase.  While bouncing through the air, the player will have no control.  Control will only be given back to the player once their character's feet have touched flat ground again.

As you can see, all I have really done here is mash together the two primary concepts from my last two lessons.

Now, being an entry level programmer...

I can't say programming physics is something I'm used to.

But I have made progress!  Upon colliding with an instance of the wall, the player bounces and loses the hold of gravity.  And, if the player can make it back down...

Gravity and regular player control are restored!

At this point, there are 2 existing factors I need to be rid of:
  1. Bouncing physics just doesn't make much sense.  The banana just continuously travels upwards with every bounce.
  2. The player still has control of the banana while in mid bounce.  Where's the fun in that.
One last point I wish to add:  Chaos.

The biggest thing I want in this game is the possibility for things to just go out of whack.  As I mentioned above, I'd like to get to a point where speed constantly increases with every bounce the player makes.  If they plan their path well enough, they'll make it to the finish no problem.  But if not, the player will be praying for flat land.

To sum up, we're making progress.  It is taking a lot of trial and error on my part, but by taking stabs in the dark, I'm learning how these objects can interact, and I'm taking the time to learn why some things work and others don't.

Once I get the final pieces of the basic gameplay together, I will share the code I've come up with and re-iterate what's going down.


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