E3 expo is approaching and my day job takes most of my time. I’m working on a big game and we will have a big exposure.
Lot of work and big pressure.
I still managed to almost finish the game!
There is still some sweet tasks left:
- One last menu.
- Hard and normal mode.
- Make the intro story cinematic.
- More polish
To celebrate that I made a little gameplay video
Sorry for the few update recently, but my new work take most of my time.
All the graphic asset are done! We still have some work on menu and on level design.
We are also working on the game icon right now. It’s a key element of an app. Most user buy an app if the icon is pretty and if the screenshots are appealing.
It’s your shop front and if you compete with near 400 000 app, it need to look really good!
The first version done by our current artist:
We ask him to open his eyes, because eyes attract people attention.
It’s a nice icon but it was too complicated for an icon. We tested it and it didn’t attract attention in the middle of other icons.
I tried myself with the help of my artist/girl friends, and we came up with this:
Like you can see, in low resolution it’s not readable.
So I’ve searched someone who have already done app icon and who could do some pixel work in low resolution.
An Icon in a low resolution (29 pixels X 29 pixels) need to be reworked. A simple image resize with Photoshop is not enough. An artist need to modify the icon pixel by pixel to increase details.
The artist I’ve found is Monty
His first concept was:
Brilliant and great idea that use all the space available.
But the eyes look like eggs and I was afraid tha the “star” and the “music note” would be invisible in low icon resolution.
To put the “rock” idea in this icon I ask him to make the duck angry and to add a piercing.
And the result he send me:
Better but it still don’t attract the look of the user.
I ask him to add pupils ‘attract people attention) and change the eyes colors to blue. And here it is the final result:
This Duck look like to try to hypnotize you And that’s what he does!
After seeing this icon in the middle of others, your look is stuck on it.
“Rework” and “Simple is beautiful” is my way of programming ( like Naruto’s “way of a ninja”..) .
How I’m programing:
1. First program version.
I make a first clean version. All essential features included. This version should be good enough to be shipped with the final product in case of a Deadline Rush.
2. Gather Feedbacks:
- I test it myself and see if my design have some flaws.
- I listen to artists feedback ( Game designer or graphic artist ).
- I ask fellows programmers feedback if I was developing some kind of code reused by others.
3. Decide what to do:
- Adding features ?
- Changing the code design to be more flexible ?
- Erasing code ? ( User found that they don’t need this feature anymore, or change everything… )
In this stage, we just :
- Move code.
- Change the class design. For example if you work on a text file parser, you can change the class structure but function used to read a float number is still the same.
- Rename function/class to be more understandable by others.
- Add features.
- Simplify code to avoid any Bug source.
We don’t redo anything !
We don’t restart from the beginning ! I will explain why later.
5. Rework again:
We can rework a second time. This is only useful for code used on several productions.
This code should be ”forgettable”.
For example I made a Text Manager when I was working in the Java Mobile Game industry.
It supports multiple language ( 7 different like russian, german, Italian etc.. ) , detects too long words, detects characters missing from the Font texture, distributes text in several pages on any screen resolution etc…
It suppress all Text’s bug which were almost 300 on each previous Game !
This code was tested on several productions. It was in this second working stage, solid and easy to use.
Rework don’t only apply on your own code, you should also employ it on code made by others. In this case you start at “2. Gather Feedback.”
I will explain why reworking is better that redoing in most case in a later post.
I participate in the Unity lightning contest, with the hope to win a Unity pro licence.
You can see all entries on the unity contest page.
You can even try my beauuutifullll Unity lightning demo:
I only work on it 1 big day and a half. I should have worked a little more to ensure me a victory but my other job eat me all my time.
My Unity project will be delivered for free at the end of the contest !
I will post a link of the Unity package with all the source code in this blog for everyone who want to download it !
The code is clean, and commented. I made a framework to easily draw multiple line. So you will be able to use it for other projects if you want, or take it as an example.