Saturday, December 29, 2007

Busy all the Time!

I have been going crazy about all the games available for the Wii and the PC. Going through almost all articles on ign and every video on gametrailers. All that apart... If you have been living in a forest or something and did not come across this awesome page of projects... well just have a look at them.
Johnny Chung Lee - Projects - Wii

This inspired me enough to get me started with learning c#.. well not just that.. but well any way.. hopefully ill' be able to do some cool stuff.. like using the wiimote instead of mouse.. for starters.. then may be even a small game that makes use of the wiimote and the nunchuck. Too ambitious.. but i hope to do at least the first part. Still have to start coding .... but C# is a starting point :D.. if you are thinking why not use the c++ or c libraries available.. well i just wanted to see what all the fuss about c# is.. turns out its' just like c++.. or java.. hopefully will be able to do what i intend to do with ease using c#... :)

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Using Wii Controlers to Max..

Imagine this... you are an assasin.. (not the one from assasin's creed) more like the one depicted in the game "Wet". This game is for PS3 and XboX360.. but just imagine using the wiimote as a sword and the nunchuck as the gun.. just amazing!! move your wiimote sideways to control the sword (more like the controls implemented in Bleach Shattered Blade for Wii or The SoulCaliber Legends). Now in addition to this... using nunchuck as your gun.. use the z or c buttons for trigger and the annalog stick for movement of the character. Don't know about others but that would really get me exited.. it make take some time to get used to.. but I really think it would be fun to have such a control scheme on a game for the Wii. To get an overview of what action moves im' talking about..enjoy the video.. of "Wet"

I was Wrong!

If you have seen my prev post about unreal engine being un-scalable etc.. well turns out i was wrong.. It does scale.. I just had very old drivers!! I have an HP dv6137tx .. with 1GB ram and Geforce Go 7400.. you know.. just good enough to play current games at lowest possible settings :) any way, The display drivers for the notebooks are pretty tricky.. nvidia doesnt' actually support all the notebooks out there.. they just provide the drivers to the OEMs... who customize the drivers to suit their products. Im' not sure about others... but HP guys seem to have been sleeping.. the latest driver they provided was 83.3... something.. and the latest beta is 169.09.. something.. of forceware. Thanks to http://www.notebookforums.com/ i was able to update my drivers to the latest beta drivers.. which make GoW work.. at a minimal setting... but it still looks pretty decent.. and gives a smooth gameplay... Cant' wait to try out other new games!! Thank you notebookforums.!! you have saved me from a lot of pain..

I did not face any problems what so ever till now after installing these beta drivers.. i just hope nothing got screwed.. :) Btw.. GoW rocks.. so does Bewolf.. cant' wait to play them both..!!

Thursday, November 01, 2007

Wii would Like to Play!!

It's really been hard for me to find time and the TV to play with the Wii, but those few hours i've spent playing games on it were just awesome. Buying Wii was the starting point for many first time things for me.. I don't like saying it.. but it actually spent the same amount for the games and extra controller that i spent for the console. Yes.. the console costs $250 and the games are like $50 each.!! there are a few cheaper games but ... they really are better left on the shelves. Any way.. the games i bought..
1) Metroid Prime 3 Corruption
2) Monkey Ball: Banana blitz
3) Rayman Raving Rabbids
MP3 (Metriod Prime 3).. was given very high regard as best fps game thus far on this console. It looks great, has very polished controls and is fun to play.. but i really hate it when it comes to searching for stuff.. and just not finding it. The reviewers all over the inet do say that it's a lot easier compared to the previous Metroid games.... i just can't imaging playing those.. :) Apart from that.. the boss battles are really fun. Rest of the enemies you find in the game are mere scape goats. There were times when i would just get detected by the lazers so that i'll have something to shoot. I should have thought about the replay value for this game before buying but well.. it still is a pretty good fps to play with the Wii Remote.

Monkey ball banana blitz.. is a collection of minigames and has a story mode too... basically you are a monkey in a ball roll the ball by tilting the wiimote and reach the end of the level and after you have cleared some levels like that.. you have a boss fight.. These are really fun...They are quite easy though. The main replay value for this comes from the minigames.. there are about 50 minigames.. and some of them are really addictive.... you can just keep playing them for hours if you have got a friend playing with you :)

Rayman Raving Rabbids.. is a really funny game.. I should say the funniest iv'e ever played.. did not play many games which have a funny storyline etc.. but .. this is really funny.. the characters are really well done.. the cut scenes are just masterpieces... if you don't mind bunnies being kicked around.. and are not an animal activist.. this a real fun game to play.

Then there is Wii sports.. its' free.. it's got tennis.. and bowling... tennis is my type of the game.. fast and fun to play.. no nonsense.. you know.. the id style of game... ofcourse.. they seem to be changing that. Well any way.. .. i just hope i could get my roomies would give me more time with the Tv for playing..

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Time Shift

If you have been following the list of games that are coming up this holiday season.. you would have come across the game called TimeShift. The game boasts of the player being able to control the time. Well we have all seen slow motion effects in games like max payne , matrix, Fear etc.
The Prince of Persia had the rewind thing which was pretty good. This same feature is now available in TimeShift and you can even do that in multi player. Sounds cool right? any way i was wondering how we can actually implement such a feature in the game?

How do you actually rewind the events that already happened ... well it wont' happen ever in real life.. but how do we provide such an implementation in a game engine? The first solution which came to my mind was..:
1) Store the motion details of each object and just trace back the positions?
2) Inverse kinematics ? (Could be too complicated...? approximations might cause problem?)
What do you guys out there think is a good solution to this problem?

Saturday, October 27, 2007

Unreal Technology

The unreal game engine is here and it seems like a solid step ahead. There are many high budget titles coming up on this engine and they all look really amazing. They are not trying to achieve realism.. but the artistic rendering really looks cool. Gears of War, UT3, Bioshock, Stranglehold ... all of these are using UT engine, they aren't realistic.. Crysis.. now that is realism. All that apart, the main concern i have with this latest installment of UT's engine is that it doesnt' seem to be very scalable. I mean a GoForce 7400 256MB memory, 1GB ram, Centrino Duo is a pretty decent system, at least it's not like im' using a GeForce 6 series card. Well any way.. seems like the UT engine really doesn't like laptops :)

Yesterday i downloaded the UT3 Demo.. to see if the game is any good, coz.. i could really not get stranglehold to run on my system.. the min requirements for the game are 2GB ram and 7800 geforce card and 15gb hdd, Just insane..!! Back to UT3 demo.. i was so exited and launched it... the menu was great.. looked fresh and neat.. but hey... whats' this!! it crashes when i start the game !!@!!@#... searched quickly through the logs.. and it says out of memory error.. What the hell.. ??? the min requirement says 512MB ram.. and i have 1GB of ram.. and it give out of memory error.. ?? I really love the game engines which can scale across systems well. Designing a game engine for a high end system is easy.. use what ever resources you want.. just get it to look good. The challenge was always to have it scale across systems.. gracefully degrade the visual experience.. At least that's the way i think the game engine should be designed. Look at Quake3, Doom3 They just run on any damn system with a graphics card.. i know people who ran Doom3 on Geforce2. Now thats' one robust game engine and a robust graphics card too :D

Wednesday, September 05, 2007

Leaders are Born

Recently my friend has done something i would have not done.. he solved a day to day problem, even though nobody asked him.. he was not required to solve it. A Problem which you, me everybody.. faces.. Traffic Jams.
He was coming back from a movie.. and he saw this road getting jammed with the unforgiving hyderabad vehicles. He along with some other volunteers jumped into action and spent around an hour+ to clear off the road.. i wasnt' there... but i would have thanked god for such people if i was one among those stranded on the road. I thought to myself... its people like this who deserve to be the leaders in every sense of the word. These are the people who really make a difference in the world. And another quote from another friend of mine after hearing about this whole ordeal...
"Im' pretty sure it gave you more happiness than writing a single line of code"
i feel proud to friends with such nice people.

Friday, July 13, 2007

E3 2007

E3 was my favorite show of the year. I've never been to one.. but man I love watching the game trailers. It was dropped, but then revived its' good to know that.. :)
The major press releases by M$, Nintendo and Sony.. all trying to sell their consoles, providing lots and lots of content.. especially Sony.. now that it's lagging behind in the console war.. it has reduced the price.. and is releasing hell a lot of games both 1st party and 3rd party stuff. Spent past 3 days going through every video blog i could find to get the glimpses of what went on at E3. The one which impressed me the most... GOW for PC. This rumor has been out in the open ever since GOW became popular on 360. But hey.. when its' official.. you really are going to get it :) Really looking forward to playing this game.

ps: Overlord is awesome, Transformers the game kinda sucked, Transformers the movie was awesome.

Thursday, June 14, 2007

Devil May Cry

If you like prince of persia type of games or any third person sword play games.. Devil may cry is a must play game. Sure the PC port has shitty controls etc.. but man it's cool. The story telling aspect really stands out. The character animation is really stiking and basically just a marvel. I started playing DMC3 and it really felt like playing TMNT with different characters, the game play etc seem quite similar except for the story telling part and the way the monsters look well that isnt' bad for me.. in fact i really liked the game. Do try it out if you get a chance, don't go by the rating it has on popular sites.. they rated it low because of bad controls, etc.. which you get used to after playing a couple of levels.. :D trust me.. its' worth the pain.
Why play DMC3 suddenly out of no where you might ask.. well i heard so much about DMC4 so thought ill' dig in a little and see what all the fuss is about. I havent played a single verison of DMC till now.. DMC3 was really a pleasent surprise. I relly like the way the story is told etc. Cant' wait to get my hands on DMC4.

Monday, May 14, 2007

A Dream Game



















As a boy i always wanted to play those fast paced games in which you control a fighter jet or something like that. Well may be there are a lot of games out there which provide this.. Top Gun, Eve Online, etc. But one game caught my eye like no other Gun Metal. This was one of the first games to use Cg (Nvidia's thingi for shaders). The game had everything i ever wanted ... a robot which can transform into a jet and fly past the enemies and blast them off with various weapons. By the way this is quite an old game.. came out in 2003 or so... well i could get my hands on it only in 2005 when one of my friends bought an nv graphics card. Do play this game if you get a chance.

Now the new game which caught my attention is Infernal. The game looks stunning and i love 3rd person shooters so this is definitely a game for me :). The ign gives it a 6.6 overall rating which is pretty much ok i guess. Im' just into it coz of the looks (kinda makes me feel like i've got gears of war on pc).

Sunday, April 22, 2007

Menu Killed The GAME



Things I learnt from this pyweek:
  • A Game doesn't have to be 3D to be a good game.
  • The UI should be intuitive one (never experiment with this).
  • Should have objectives for each level. These objectives should not be too hard to achieve. (should not be very strict.. should allow for user error etc..)
  • Graphics (images are very important for the look gives a good feel to the user)
  • Motivation is very important. (don't know why but i did not have enough motivation to actually complete the game with good menus etc).
There was a huge competition this time at pyweek. All the developers made sure that the rating was even for all of them :) Well a little disappointment because of the final result.. but i guess i had to learn my lesson :D never ever leave the menus.

By the way if you want to checkout the updated version of the game (modifications based on the feedback i got from other participants in pyweek4)
Marine Rescue(src)
Marine Rescue(Win32Bin)

Saturday, March 24, 2007

Bots @ Acclaim.com



Now that there is not much work to be done, I guess now our cricket team can concentrate on their ads. May be now India and Pak can play their own tournament at home :) Not really bothered about the loss actually coz some where at the back of my mind, i knew this was going to happen.

By the way .. all that apart.. Found some good free mmorpg games. My fav is "Bots" at http://bots.acclaim.com
Fairly simple game, with Wii type graphics. But the game is fun to play. The player vs player modes are good. Good amount of strat involved and at the same time its' action packed. They have an amazing business plan, Im' not sure how good it is but really a good one. Try it out.. you might actually like it. Still have to figure out a lot of things about the game but.. ya its' free and it's fun to play :)

Thursday, March 15, 2007

Logo for T-Shirt??


Here is a crazy idea for a logo on a T-Shirt. Simple two color image, inspired from the PoP :)
By the way if you have heard this statement.. "Look hon.. no hands..." doesn't that statement really apply in here :D

Sunday, February 18, 2007

Pocket Tanks

I have been working with pygame lately and have found out that OpenGL is the best if you don't want to handle integer based screen blitting stuff. As for me i have managed to get a small game running. This is still a work in progress so i am looking for feedback so as to change it. Currently it looks ok to me.
If you are wondering why pocket tanks??? well.. the idea of sliding land looked cool to me.. wondered how it could have been done.. quite simple.. drop the pixels in each column. That is as simple as it gets. This is very easy to do in pygame. So i managed to get it right. The only problem i faced was managing the tanks when land below them is changing. You know the land sliding.. etc.. Well any way i still need to add scoring system, artwork for weapons, was wondering about incorporating multiplayer. Could be tricky but have to think about it.

For the first time i realized how important it is to design the code structure before hand. Unlike my other games, i started off designing this as a simple understand while you do kinda of program. So i really did not give much thought about how the structure was. No doubt i was using python and it had classes.. but i was using global variables and that caused a major problem when i wanted to structure the code into multiple files. One single file looks elegant from outside .. you know .. the.. strange.. "WHOLE GAME IN ONE FILE" kinda feeling but.. it really is hard to manage such code. Still some major drawbacks in the structure but i hope i will be able to manage without any major design changes.
As usual the art work has taken quite some time away from the development time. Just to get the feel of what's going on ... you need to have some artwork ready. Cubes and Rectangles are good, but the way it looks after it has some objects in it is very important.

Wednesday, February 14, 2007

PyWeek4

PyWeek is a game designing contest which involves developing games using python and pygame. I participated in PyWeek1, and PyWeek2 but could not get into pyweek3. Now that PyWeek4 is just round the corner.. i am getting ready for it. During my last two pyweeks, i used OpenGL for rendering.. this time for a change i will be trying with just pygame's rendering features. Here is a sample...


I downloaded some game sprites from the net especially from Game Sprites and GSA. These sprites were actually used in some games, but i guess these can be used because they are available freely.