Tuesday 28 February 2023

February Is For Pumpkins and Witches


 February, the month of the year long associated with witches and pumpkins!

Yeah, no, okay it isn't ... but my latest update for the top-down swag-em-up waifu shooter Monsters Loot Swag features the first of the unlockable player characters, Pumpkin! 

*Crosses off cute witch from his list of weibo anime meme characters*

Pumpkin can be unlocked by getting the "Marathon" achievement, and her attributes are as follows:

PUMPKIN is a mix ranged, playable character with a long ranged standard attack and decent strength for knocking monsters out of the way. Her special attack is a very high damage strike to the enemy to her immediate front, whilst her evasion stuns all monsters within half the screen with a slap of her broomstick. Whilst her healing and enery recharging is somewhat low, this is made up for with her exceptionally high starting mobility.

Vital Statistics ... 38-26-34 *rimshot*

And here she is in video action.

Speaking of videos ... here's a few more.

I have been looking at updating my working game engine code to the latest release of free and Open Source Torque 3D, the version with the fancy PBR and 21st Century asset system which apparently all modern game engines consider to be a must have. 

I had also spent some time making demo code for a third person camera system that has movement input orientated in screenSpace - eg: input "left" makes the player move left along the screen. Most third person games like Elden Ring, GTA and Sleeping Dogs (which is the only one of those I've actually played), have this input-to-movement system. For years randos in the forums had asked for this type of camera based movement, and I coded it up in an afternoon. This differs importantly from the top-down system in Monsters Loot Swag, as the camera is still the property of the player object, rather than being a seperate entity that orbits the player and is beyond their immediate control. This did mean quite a bit of hacking away at the player's move function but I managed to leave in the original system for first person view.

After this I added a lock-on system, so that the camera would orientate to view a target whilst keeping the player in-frame and allowing the same screenSpace based movement input system. To test the correct rotational direction of the camera I gave the rotation speed a delay which makes it look kind of janky.

Both the third-person camera and the lock-on resources are up on the Torque3D forums, but do be aware that the lock-on code was written in a haze of sleep deprivation and the maths can be described as "fugly", the networking is good though 😅.

Next up is another unlockable character for my Early Access title on Steam, Monsters Loot Swag, and I may also start to write up some demo code for a melee based hack-and-slash game, which might use actual weapon hitbox detection rather than faking the whole thing with maths and raycasts.