An Update From Your Friendly Neighbourhood Gamedev

I should write more posts. Especially this month, there have been a ton of new announcements.

Those video game awards 2014 were cool, although the only big announcement I got from it was that Nintendo’s new Zelda for Wii U is worth buying a Wii U for and that Nintendo might best Sony and Microsoft in 2015. Sony’s new PSX happened, and a few cool demos came from it. Street Fighter V is PS4/PC exclusive, and doesn’t look that great, albeit it looks like what SF IV should have looked like, instead of those awkward jagged poly-models everyone said looked incredible. New game “Drawn to Death” looks like good fun, but it tries to mimic pen-drawings with computer models and cel-shading again. Similarly, that new Guilty Gear game is out this month, and also uses 3d models instead of painted 2d ones.

I mention those last few games because I can’t help but feel disappointed. They would all have looked better if they utilized styles similar to my work, where you literally use hand-drawn sprites/cels in 3d environments.

Speaking of which, you know those times when brilliant ideas just start to pop into your head? My current use of 2d art in 3d games uses a bunch of perspectives around the center of the character, with one drawing for the entire character, one drawing visible at a time. One (of the numerous) issues implementing that is depth-perception. It’s a flat billboard, if you wanted a first-person game (which I might soon) or were close up to characters, this would look strange. But what if I could have several of these perspective-billboard objects around centers of body parts (arms, legs, head, torso, etc.), not just one for everything? Better yet, attach them to a 3d skeleton directly! This would ensure most of the animation is handled by 3d techniques (3d animation is popular now-a-days for smoothness and quickness to make), and even better, expensive animations like arm and leg movement would reduce dramatically in RAM. The 2d sprites could still animate slightly, so that the undesired effect of perfectly-smooth 3d movement might be less noticeable. This is basically a implementation of common 2d bone-animation techniques already used in 2d games and flash animation, but I don’t think that’s ever been done in 3d before…

Sadly, this won’t be done for some time. I volunteered for three things that will keep me busy for the next month (I hate it when I do that), not including school. Hopefully January will have some more important updates from me. Until then, you have a few hours to take advantage of my last work, “Drew and the Floating Labyrinth,” through a pay-what-you-want deal on IndieGameStand until 11:59pm December 12. Seriously, I think everyone agrees it’s worth at least a dollar, and some of the proceeds go to charity. I’m thankful that so far it isn’t the worst-performing deal on the site (although it is in the worst 5%, because of timing and so on I suppose).

And I will put a post on my game’s aftermath of release, with a brief review of sites I tried to release it on. Is anyone else still waiting for getting their dev-money from Desura?