Monday, March 30, 2009

Plague 3.27

Hi all,

Plague has gotten a bit easier with the last few releases. 
  1. Any ideas on what would make it more challenging for you, while retaining/improving the fun factor?
  • Made plague harder by lowering threshold for more zombies, and scaling initial zombies to score
  • Feat: Added health, sprint and ammo bars
  • Feat: Replaced text for grenades with "g" so players (hopefully) know to use g to change grenade
  • Op: Added a frame counter so that UI text is updated every few frames
  • Fix: Changed laser to dump heat into cells instead of temp (more realistic)
  • Current values shown next to selected menu option
  • Editted menu option in green
  • Grenade UI text prettied up
  • Other code changes to menu/options to make the code more intuitive
  • Options menu now shows default values
  • Survivors now have many small health bars (instead of one big one). If a bar is partially filled, it recharges reasonably quickly. If it is completely depleted, it can only be replenished by a medkit. The GUI has been updated to reflect this.
  • Recock time for weapon is now shown in a white bar (good for sniper/gauss rifles).

Saturday, March 28, 2009

Plague 3.26

I've had a busy weekend of intensive car hunting (still ongoing), so I havent had much time to spend coding. 

Thankfully, Rene Dudfield has and now Plague runs noticeably faster than the previous already very snappy version! Sean has sourced a new font (MyUnderwood) so the previously more suitable but less than readable text has been replaced.

Other minor things: I've rejigged the weapon drop probabilities again (I thought I had previously done this)  so you get more fun guns to pick up, tweaked the formations again and fixed some bugs.

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Plague 3.25

  • Op: AI code sped up by factor of approx 10* (thanks Sean).
  • Op: Control code sped up by being event based (thanks SanityImpaired)
  • Op: controls moved to
  • Op: onfire checking code now only applies to sims with AI.
  • Op: Timer code sped up by selective updating (thanks Sean).
  • Op: Timer code now uses sets
  • Op: Bullets the bounce too often are now killed (removes massive FPS drop spikes).
  • Op: LOS speed optimisation turned back on by default (leads to artifacts)
  • Starting zombies now a separate parameter to num_zombies
  • Made background color darker
  • Reduced sim sight radius (so that at full zoom in you see to edge of screen)
  • Allowed AI sims to share ammo
  • Changed all fonts to boston (thanks Sean)

No update tonight

I've been uploading versions of Plague so often recently that it feels weird to not do one tonight, but there aren't really any substantial changes from a user perspective so it doesnt really seem worthwhile. 

Instead I've spent most of my time reading open source licences again and mucking about on the SourceForge page for Plague that has finally come through. It'll be good to get stuff like a forum, an open web bzr repository, bug tacking lists etc. I havent even scratched the surface of what SourceForge can do, so it'll probably be a few days before any stuff starts appearing there. 

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Plague 3.24

Minor bug fixes, still havent tackled the CPU-killing-AI issue.
  • fixed sprinting bug that stopped players form sprinting when an enemy was visible
  • fixed walking animations so it doesnt update while the game is paused
  • changed options check so options can be >= 0 (allows zero hives at game start)
  • removed a bug that would cause the game to crash when a gun was fired and there was no target_location.

Monday, March 23, 2009

Plague 3.23

Plague is beginning to look quite respectable now that it has a menu screen and an options menu. This has been on the todo list for months now. A big thanks to Sean Lange!
  • Sean Lange has added a main menu and an options menu. You can edit a few game variables here - it should allow you to customise Plague to a sufficient degree for now.

Sunday, March 22, 2009

Plague 3.22

I havent had much time this weekend for coding, so the only real difference this release is the addition of issuing commands with "v" (go, follow). At the moment I have still made it so that sims that cant see you pick a new leader and wander off, but I think I'll make it so that if you have issued a command they will keep it util you let them go.  Thoughts?

I've also toned down the difficulty (quite a lot really) by giving some starting pistols as weapons.

The other thing is I've made a project page at PyedPypers, should be good for using the forum there instead of the comments here. It's still pre-release so some things aren't working quite right, but it looks very promising.
  • Allowed player to issue stop/go commands with “v”. v toggles between “go” and “follow”. Followers will go to where the mouse cursor is. 
  • Gave sims starting weapons (pistols for now). Game is much easier now. Will make it harder later again by reducing the number of starting guns. 
  • Changed map creation parameters to give (what I think are slightly) better maps.

Friday, March 20, 2009

Plague 3.21

SanityImpaired made lots of suggestions for Plague today that I've been meaning to get round to for ages (like, months now) and some new ones (that make Plague much more difficult, so credit/blame him not me :P ), and somehow I've managed to do them all in one night. Thanks SanityImpaired, that was excellent motivation!

Plague seems to be getting slow again. I think I've squeezed too much AI into a polling package, and I need to rebuild it to be more event based and poll far less often (like once every second instead of 30 times a second). I've started that work, but I thought I'd just push this out tonight anyway.
  • changed weapon probabilities to be harder 
  • limited player to one grenade 
  • decreased ammo, weapons in map creation. Yep, its REALLY hard now 
  • allowed ai survivors to sprint, in all sensible scenarios I have thought of so far (if you think of some more, or something doesnt seem right, let me know) 
  • allowed zombies to form swarms with leaders 
  • leader zombies can now notify squads of targets (no they dont issue move commands) 
  • respaced survivor formations again to make them tighter 
  • made it so that survivors try not to crowd each other.

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Plague 3.20

  • separated survivors from your start position so others cannot “steal” your guns. 
  • Added line and chevron formations (and renamed the old line formation to column) 
  • Fixed an ammo bug where ammo would not be created and crash the game 
  • Removed an intermittent bug where guns dont update their images. 
  • Rebalanced weapons a bit (made them a little weaker). 
  • Changed spacing in formations so you are less crowded 
  • (hopefully) fixed ammo bug where survivors try to get ammo that they dont pick up.

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Plague 3.19

  • added back end code to allow me to add arbitrary game objects easily. Will be useful in the future when players design bases. Use cursor keys to pick/place/remove. Only works in “test mode”. 
  • Removed some debug print code I shouldn't have left in (whoops!) 
  • added UI text so the player can see the formation (and placeable game object) 
  • sped up world partitioning algorithm, so it takes 2500ms instead of 5000 ms to partition an average level (speeds up map creation time by 33%). 
  • fixed the way sims pick up ammo and drop ammo – should get rid of weird ammo related bugs introduced in version 3.14.

Saturday, March 14, 2009

Plague 3.18

Not a huge amount done this week, I've been busy with other stuff. This release has tidies up some loose ends from last weeks release.

  • improved “fire_escape” ai algorithm
  • added Sean Lange's burnt shrubs art
  • zombie_fast now has a burnt corpse, thanks to Sean Lange
  • allowed the player to pick the formation (use key “c”)
  • added wedge, line, None formations (previously only ring formation)
  • changed shotgun number to 3 (better than SMG, worse than AR)

Sunday, March 8, 2009

Plague 3.17 comments

Survivors now have "squad" AI, and will spontaneously form squads. I've built the framework for multiple formations, but I'm out of time to add functionality to let you pick the formation you want.

Sean Lange has added some deft footwork, and a framework to add more animations.

I've also let you drop weapons voluntarily, but there seems to be an intermittent bug with this where the picked up weapon sometimes keeps its unused image, and sometimes isnt responsive.

The (doable) changes requested in previous comments have been incorporated by and large.

I've seriously run out of time this weekend to do more. I'll try to find the time after work this week to add in multiple formation options, kill the weapon bug, and start letting zombies form mobs. The first and last parts should be straight forward, so with any luck there will be a new release out shortly. I'll also use Seans "burnt" art as well in short order, should make burning down a forest even more interesting to watch.

Plague 3.17 - changes galore!

  • survivors now can have squad behavior and formations (extensions to come)
  • Sean Lange has added walking animation for Survivors
  • survivors now avoid heat (they run away from fire)
  • guns now start with a full clip of ammo
  • capped the number of zombies and hives to stop massive slow downs
  • scaled the number of permissible zombies to the number of remaining hives
  • removed a bug where survivors try to pick up a weapon they already have
  • fixed a bug where the laser charged while the simulation was paused
  • made the player exempt from sharing weapons with other survivors
  • added a drop weapon key (x), drops your current weapon and switches to another weapon if you have one (I know there is an intermittent bug with this, bug reports welcome)
  • have not added all of Sean Lange's additional art (I'm out of weekend).