View Full Version : Mulitplexity: Building Brick Artillery

06-02-2007, 08:11 PM
Hi there,

I just registered, but I really don't know if I find the time to make it to a final game in the end. I will send in a design document and then I'll see how it goes...

So here is my game idea:

The game will be a multiplayer game (one after each other or if time permits it, over network).

The game will take place in a childrens playroom.

In every round, the players get a set amount of random building bricks and have to build a tower as high as possible with them in a given time (e.g. 1 minute), stable enough not to collapse (you know, I have kids... and they like to play with those bricks *lol*).

When this round is finished, the artillery round starts. Every player gets 5 artillery like toys randomly placed around the tower of his opponent(s) and so has 5 shots to destruct the tower(s) of him/them.

Points will be given for building height after first round and for left height after artillery round.

I plan to use DirectX (so I will again stick to Windows :) ) and Newton Game Dynamics.
There will be a high amount of different brick-types and also the kind of artillery will vary, and so will the controls of the artillery.... There will be no real cannons, but more the like of Tiddlywinks, toy catapults etc.

Thats it so far....


Here is a link to the WIP Design Doc:

06-02-2007, 08:24 PM
Nice idea Huehnerschaender. My son would love a game where he gets to build and blow things up :) Can't wait to see it in action.

PS: Added to the tracking thread

06-02-2007, 08:58 PM
Very interesting idea. Maybe the most original yet? That'd be awesome to play :D

06-02-2007, 09:45 PM
Hey neat idea.

I think I used to play something similar to this when I was a wee one. ;)

Best of luck this year!

Don't forget to submit your entries through the competition system!

06-02-2007, 09:51 PM
One question:
Is my constructive level, where the player has to build his tower, fitting in the "puzzle" genre? If not, which genre is it? And if it doesn't fit in any, can I forget my idea then?

07-02-2007, 08:15 AM
I think it's puzzle (since it may not collapse) and building genre...

But I think that's up to the judges to decide... :(

07-02-2007, 08:30 AM
My take on it as a judge would be that it would depend on the blocks used to build the tower. If they are simply cubes for example, then I would says its building + artillery. If they aren't plain cubes (or there is a handicap when building - simluated shakey hand for example) then I would say its puzzle + artillery. The fact that there is a time limit, doesn't, in my opinion make it one or the other

Either way, you have at least two colours from the genre list. But I guess it would be nice if WILL or Savage could confirm how they see it as they are ultimately in charge.

07-02-2007, 09:09 AM
The bricks will be of different shape like cube, cylinder, triangle, etc, varying in size, shape and color (though the color doesn't matter here). You know those wooden building brick sets for children where they can build towers with? Thats the way I would like the bricks to be. They can be rotated and placed over or beneath each other to build a construct. Only thing which holds them together or makes it collapse in building phase is gravity.

07-02-2007, 09:20 AM
Then I personally would say its a puzzle + artillery game :-)

07-02-2007, 04:09 PM
ah... that's indeed a very nice concept :thumbup:

varying in size, shape and color (though the color doesn't matter here).

I think i have an idea:
You could add blocks with different weights, and every color would have it's own weight (blue = light, red=heavy etc).
This would make the game a lot harder and should only be used in the higher levels (or when the user selects a higher difficulty leve).
This way, you must put the heavy blocks at the bottom, so the tower will be more solid.

I dont know how hard it is to implement this. :? I guess you'll use the Newton library for this project. I dont know how it works but it might take Weight into account when performing the calculations. :)
You might also want to take the object's size/volume into account when specifying the weigth's. This way you could leave color as an unimportant factor and just make big objects heavier than the small ones. :)

I hope you like these idea's...

Good luck with this project ;)

A question to all native english speakers.. do i say "More heavy" or "heavier"??? :P

07-02-2007, 04:13 PM
A question to all native english speakers.. do i say "More heavy" or "heavier"??? Razz


I am heavier than I used to be.

07-02-2007, 04:20 PM
Yes, weight of course is a factor which will be implemented, but was not planned by color, but by size of the object.

I could also add different materials like wood, metal etc to make even the same sized bricks different in weight.... I will test it when I start to implement the building level...

And thanks for the answer :)

btw. Yes, I will use Newton for this game.

11-02-2007, 10:10 PM
Hi again...

after stage 1 results are out, I guess everyone is now working on his/her/their gameengine... so am I.

Last year it was really fun to see the progress of the others and in addition to that, many ideas and suggestions came out of posting my own progress. So I will continue this "habit" this year and show my progress here (mainly in form of videos).

So here is what I have so far. Not much, but basically the engine of my first part of the game. The building stage. Surely needs some tweeking but it works as I was thinking of.

My children already try everything to convince me, they are good testers and need to play *lol*

Of course I will add more different bricks later on.

I also changed my scoring mechanism a little (not implemented yet).
You will gain points for all bricks, that are placed within your "construction area". This is the circle, visualized by my particle engine.
The higher a brick is, the more points you will get for it.
Points will be given for a height of minimum more than 1 brick unit (thats the long bricks standing upwards, so a single brick will give no points).

This way you can decide, if you try to build a very high tower to gain more points for single bricks, or to build several smaller towers, which will be more stable and it will be difficult for your opponents to destroy several tower instead of one.

Ok, enough chattering...here is the video....



11-02-2007, 10:21 PM
Ah man, that's freaking awesome :D
I wanna play this game. I love building towers.

And it looks like you've comed so far in development allready. I expect a lot from your entry :P

You should release a playable demo. That way you'll be sure to win because all the other compititors will be busy playing the demo instead of working on their entry :wink:

11-02-2007, 10:28 PM
You should release a playable demo. That way you'll be sure to win because all the other compititors will be busy playing the demo instead of working on their entry :wink:


I wanna play this game. I love building towers.
I find myself playing with the bricks of my kids sometimes :) I guess thats the child which stays in everyone of us...

And thanks for the feedback so far :) Good night!


12-02-2007, 06:14 AM
Nice idea! Looking forward to playing it.

Mattias Fagerlund made something vaguely similar about throwing a ball like a couple years ago - doesn't work anymore due to the infamous OpenGL version bug:
It had no real gameplay, but it was surprisingly addictive... I guess that deep down, we all like throwing stuff and making things fall down. :roll:

12-02-2007, 06:54 AM
Hmmm... never seen this "game" before. From the screenshot it looks quite similar to what I do here. But then you can call every physics demo where you throw crates in a landscape the same idea :)

I guess the mix of building and then firing at the opponents constructs is a little more than that. In addition I plan some more features I still have to work out how they fit into the game concept (like buying special bricks if you need them (the score will then be used as "money"). So you can decide if you take the risk of spending eg 100 points and get a brick that you can place to the top of your tower, giving you 200 points because the tower is already high enough to get this amount, but if you misplace it, your tower will collapse and the 100 points are gone). Also changing your randomly given artillerys by setting points could be useful. So I can imagine spending 50 points and double the weight of your projectile to give it more penetrating power... But thats all just in my mind, I just started the engine :)

And you are right, the concept is very addictive. I already do more testing then implementing *rofl*

I guess that's why there are still "throwing can" booths on the amusement parks and those rifle shooting booths (don't know how you really call those things).

Greetings :)

12-02-2007, 04:24 PM
I have a qustion.
In the end of the movie when the tower collapse. Does it collapse because it's unstable or is it because you made it fall?

Either way I would think that it should be able to collapse because it's unstable. So if you've already implemented it; cool. Else you have an extra thing to worl on. :)

12-02-2007, 04:37 PM
It collapsed, because the physics engine told it to collapse :)

The bricks are affected by gravity, and if you build an unstable construct by placing the bricks unbalanced or build a skewed tower it will collpase. Like it would in real world...

Btw... got my scoring system working for building phase...

12-02-2007, 09:36 PM
Progress of today:

- added 4 Construction areas
- added 4 Players
- added live scoring mechanism (this means, you always see your current points. If you build your tower, your score increases. If your tower collapses, the points decrease live...)
- the bricks of other players are greyed out and cannot be picked
- camera moves to the construction area of the next player at keypress (later on when round ends for active player)
- added triangle bricks
- added long thin bricks

The screen shows the current state:

http://www.dino-it.de/scr2_.jpg (http://www.dino-it.de/scr2.jpg)


13-02-2007, 05:47 PM
http://www.dino-it.de/scr3_.jpg (http://www.dino-it.de/scr3.jpg)

I added the room around the playfield. Ceiling, wallpaper with borders on the walls, a door, a window, and a picture of my kids at the wall :)

Furniture and toys will follow...

13-02-2007, 07:08 PM
The picture looks great. The children's room looks nice. Question regarding the carpet; is the texture based on actual carpet in your home ;)

13-02-2007, 07:41 PM
No, it's a texture I found on the internet and then made it seamless, just to start with. It will be changed! *lol* I don't have such ugly carpets at home. I like wooden floor under my feet... :) But the carpet in my son's room is dark blue... I will put it into the game, too. And much things from his room, too :)

13-02-2007, 10:51 PM
Current state of progress...


Things to do until stage 2 deadline:

- Readme.txt :)
- Round countdown and automatic switch to next player
- fixing minor bugs (eg at the moment points of the mouse bound brick are calculated; adjusting the automatic positioning of the mouse moved bricks)
- User inteface


14-02-2007, 10:44 PM
Fixed some bugs, added some internal stuff and built in the countdown in form of a stop watch. Not much time today...

http://www.dino-it.de/15022007_.jpg (http://www.dino-it.de/15022007.jpg)

14-02-2007, 11:30 PM
Woo hoo! We got 'ad space' in Dirk's game! :D

I just wonder how much it's going to cost us a month. ;) Whats your going rate? :lol:

15-02-2007, 01:22 AM
Woo hoo! We got 'ad space' in Dirk's game! :D

I just wonder how much it's going to cost us a month. ;) Whats your going rate? :lol:

Hey, no fair sucking up to the hosting site! :P

15-02-2007, 07:35 AM

You also got ad scace in Tanx... didn't see it? The logo scrolled up in the credit screen.

The game is made for this contest, so I want to show in the game somehow...

No costs at all *lol*

16-02-2007, 01:38 PM
Huehnerschaender you really gotta get a playable demo up of that :). My boy saw the video last night and about shit himself. Daddy, can I play that game, is all I heard for 2 hours. Hard to tell him its not a real game yet when he can see someone else playing it :).

Anyways, I'm looking forward to the compo as it keeps heating up this year. All entries are looking great.

16-02-2007, 06:40 PM
That game play video looks very good.

May I suggest you allow the customising of pictures that hang in the back ground and even allow the player to tilt the frame if they want to. The parents can put their pictures or pictures of sibblings or other brain washing material that the kids can see while playing the game.

16-02-2007, 06:58 PM
Hey You should post your latest vid on YouTube, Dirk! :D

Or I can do it under my 'PascalGameDev' Channel that I've already setup... I've got like 2 or 3 subscribers already. :lol:

BTW this is not only offered to Dirk. If anyone wants their super cool demo videos put up on YouTube, let me know. :)

16-02-2007, 07:09 PM
What the...

Oh my god... That'll be hard to beat.

16-02-2007, 07:13 PM
Hehe... I already though about letting the player adjust players pictures, so that you can play your alter ego with your own face... the pictures on the wall are just textures which can be exchanged without any problems, too.
If there is time I will add this feature.... but let yourself be told, that this game is not only for children... the building part may look very easy but I guess smaller children will not have the imagination to adjust a cannon to let the cannonball fly physically correct into your opponents base... lets see how this features are implemented in the end...

do you really think it makes sense to put videos of this development state on YouTube? I mean... there is not much to show yet :)

16-02-2007, 07:51 PM
Oh I don't think so. Even young children now how to throw a ball to make it hit a target.

16-02-2007, 08:12 PM
This game is moving so fast I'm expecting cat & dog to make their entrance in the next video, as the mayhem monsters they are for every construction game! :)

16-02-2007, 08:14 PM
Hehe, I was already kidding about the cat as some kind of "weapon" at work with my colleagues...

We were thinking of some kind of "cat sweets" or toy that you can throw to the opponents towers and when the cat gets it, it will tip over the tower... but that was just kidding around :)

16-02-2007, 08:26 PM
You should be able to pickup toys from around the room and throw them as well :). It would be really fun to attack the competition with a teady bear, toy truck, or barbie doll. Hey Ken, watch your nuts!

PS: If this thing actually runs like it shows, I may be screwed. Not that I care, my entry is going well so far, and I'm looking forward to completing it :)

16-02-2007, 09:12 PM
Hmmm... if you can throw everything around, where would be the "tactical" and "aiming" part for different type of artillrys? It would be too easy and too fast to destroy the towers I suppose...

PS: If this thing actually runs like it shows, I may be screwed.
Sorry, I don't understand the sense of this sentence... what does screwed mean? Translated to german it means something like "fastened with screws"... but I don't suppose this is what you mean :)

16-02-2007, 10:52 PM
hehe,.. you're setting a high standard and he's afraid his entry is way below that standard ;)

17-02-2007, 12:13 AM
hehe,.. you're setting a high standard and he's afraid his entry is way below that standard ;)

Exactly! Now slack off a bit won't ya ;)

17-02-2007, 05:17 AM
"screwed" means something like... "am Arsch". I know this is rude, but that's the correct translation. ;)

So he's saying if it is as far, as it is, he's got a serious problem, cause he supposes his entry is not. Mine is not either, by the way.

17-02-2007, 07:47 AM
Ah, ok... thanks for explanation and translation.... I understand "Am Ars.." *lol*

But I don't think that my entry is really far... I have done some things to make it look ok... but eg. I don't have my user interface running, I don't have menu screens... these are things which will cost much time and you already have all this running Mr. Darling :)

17-02-2007, 02:19 PM
I have no menu screens and interface either. ;)

But the graphic alone is... well, wow. I keep wondering how all the others get these smooth lines without any aliases... And why a scene with 50 Quads is running way too slow on my notebook whereas Halo is running fluently...

17-02-2007, 02:28 PM
For my screenshots there is not even antialiasing enabled... maybe it looks "smooth" because of a quite high resolution, don't know... in the final game you will be able to choose the AA mode...

Hmm.... 50 cubes is not that much :) I have 120 bricks lying around in the room, the walls, ceiling, floor, window, door and some other models and I still get 400+ FPS when I disable volume shadows...

Seems that you do something wrong, but of course I cannot tell you what, because I don't know what you are doing there :)

17-02-2007, 02:38 PM
It's not even 50 cubes - it's 50 quads. And it works fine in window mode, in fullscreen it's smooth, but way too slow. Anyway I have no idea about enhanced 3D effects which will be somewhat difficult in the future.

[21:10] 3_of_8: Did you see those screenshots?
[21:10] DGL-Luke: Yeah.
[21:10] 3_of_8: How can we beat that?
[21:10] DGL-Luke: That's no problem.
[21:10] DGL-Luke: We just have to make the damn best Mech-Simulation of all.
[21:11] 3_of_8: Sounds good...

17-02-2007, 02:55 PM
You are not using graphics.pas, are't you? :)

Sounds very strange... 50 quads is a joke for hardware accelerated drawing... which interface do you use? OpenGL? DirectX? Which library?

17-02-2007, 04:06 PM
I guess that's not the right thread for that. But, however:

I'm using OpenGL with the dglOpenGL.pas-header, SDL for every interaction with the OS, Newton for the physics stuff and Geometry.pas for calculations in the Euclidean Space.

EDIT: Graphics.pas, lol. My very first game was written with Graphics.pas. Really nice, but 60% CPU usage. xD

No. MechaChess is completely independent from all Delphi Standard Units except System.pas.

18-02-2007, 10:19 PM
Due to illness of my complete family (influenza got us all), progress is not as fast as I wish... but still there is some progress :)

Here are some screens:


As you can see I have started with the UI... not much yet, just the scoreboard of each player... but the screenshots show, that you can use your own photos in the game which are bordered on your panel (there will be more borders later on).

I added some furniture (more will follow, I am slow at making 3D models :) ).

The controls for building round are nearly as I wish them to be... it's a bit tricky with Newton, but it works good already...


18-02-2007, 11:03 PM
progress is not as fast as I wish
Progress is not as fast as you wish? :o
What are you planning on finishing the game in a week or so?
Judging by your screenshots and the other comptitors screenshots/demos it seems to me you're far in front of all of us. I know for sure you're way ahead of me. :roll:

Your screenshots are looking mighty good :shock:
I'm honestly shocked about how far you're in your development. How have you managed to make all that on a single week?
I can't wait to play this game. :D

19-02-2007, 12:10 AM
Dude, what is that? Shadows, Models, Lighting? And that's not enough for you? You're killing me. I'd be glad if I just had any ide of making shadows like these.

19-02-2007, 03:48 AM
I actually like the floor that was before...
But it looks very good!

19-02-2007, 05:49 AM
I can't wait to have a go at this game. Looks grand.

I agree with Dan the previous carpet was more adventurous ;)

19-02-2007, 06:42 AM
Yes, I started with 0 lines of code in the first week of february... but hey, I am using Newton and DanJetX... so I don't have to write procedures for e.g. drawing a texture in DirectX. Thats the purpose of frameworks, isn't it? Making things easier and faster... And DanJetX does a great job! Thanks to Dan!
And in addition, I played around with many things in the last half year or so (Dans shadow volumes, Newton, particle engine, 3D modelling etc). So, fortunately, I got the basics to do everything myself until now.

Dan, Czar:
The carpet is just a texture :) I still have the old one *hehe* I plan several "room themes" where things like carpet, wall paper and furniture change. Hopefully time allows me to do it...

19-02-2007, 10:23 PM
Todays progress...

I finished the "behaviour" of the players scoreboards...

They are ordered to the left border of the screen like some kind of cards. The active player is visible, inactive players scoreboards are interposed. If the game switches to the next player, the active players board moves in and the newly active players board comes out.

Also added 3 picture borders.

And I tried to model my first artillery toy :)

Here is a first screen of it:


Thats it for today...

19-02-2007, 10:33 PM
Are they particles?

19-02-2007, 10:48 PM
So you'll be finished with the game on friday?

Are you missing anything besides the full implementation of Artillery? :P

Seriously, either you have a whole lot of time, or else you're some great Game Programmer Guru.

btw I like your player scoreboards. Well I like the whole design so far.

Does this game allow up to 4 players?

20-02-2007, 06:58 AM
Are they particles?

What is particles? The white flares? Yes... they are.

So you'll be finished with the game on friday?

Nope :lol:

Are you missing anything besides the full implementation of Artillery? :P
Yep, Intro, Title, Menu, Settings, Ending.

Seriously, either you have a whole lot of time, or else you're some great Game Programmer Guru.
Me and my family got the flu last week, and my ill son forced me to sit in front of the PC to show him music videos. So while he was watching videos, I did stuff for the game. So I am no Guru, but had some more time last week ;)

btw I like your player scoreboards. Well I like the whole design so far.
Thanks :)

Does this game allow up to 4 players?
Yep... but network support will only be added if there is time...

20-02-2007, 06:46 PM
It took me the whole afternoon to make a controllable object out of my cannon model... but it works great already!

Take a look at the video, see me build & first time DESTROY! :)



20-02-2007, 08:34 PM
Again: Awesome. This game looks completely awesome. I'd be glad if I was as far as you are. Right now I feel like having no chance at all.

However: What program did you use for that video?

20-02-2007, 09:03 PM
Again: Awesome. This game looks completely awesome. I'd be glad if I was as far as you are.
Thanks dude...

Right now I feel like having no chance at all.
Oh, see it as motivation, no demoralisation! My hard time will come. I know that other competitors work in another way than I do. They plan their projects a lot better. They design classes for every kind of entity they want to have in the game etc. And in the end they just add graphics and sound and all of the sudden they are finished without having much to show until near the end of the competition.
I am doing the fun stuff first and then in most cases get into trouble when it comes to things like menus, settings and such stuff, because need to add a lot of statements in a late state.... so my hard time will come when you guys have fun with adding visual content!

However: What program did you use for that video?
I own a copy of FRAPS. After capturing I use Windows Movie Maker to encode it (Fraps uses gigabytes for a few minutes of video)

20-02-2007, 10:31 PM
:clap: That's all I can say :)

As usual it looks amazing ;)

However, are you allowed to drive around with your cannon? Doesn't it make the artillery part a bit to easy? And perhaps you're cannon is a bit to strong. It only took you one shot to totally demolish your sons tower.
Well I'm prety sure you know what you are doing.

Are there any chances of you uploading a demo, or will we have to wait to the end of the compo?
Perhaps it would be the best if you didn't upload a demo. I don't have time to play the game anyway, if I'm supposed to finish my own entre ;)

21-02-2007, 12:03 AM
Nice video Dirk. Can I suggest you use dynamite sticks with a fuse instead of a cannon.

21-02-2007, 05:58 AM
:clap: That's all I can say :)

As usual it looks amazing ;)


However, are you allowed to drive around with your cannon? Doesn't it make the artillery part a bit to easy? And perhaps you're cannon is a bit to strong. It only took you one shot to totally demolish your sons tower.
Well I'm prety sure you know what you are doing.

Well, yes, you will be able to drive around, but not in the whole room like in the video.
The artillery round will start with some kind of slot machine, where your artillery toys are chosen randomly. You are then able to place them around your construction area and in some cases (like the cannon) can drive around your construction area. I will mark the area visually where you can drive.
Other artillery toys will be used completely different. Artillery does not mean "cannon". There will be a (hopefully) big variety of different toys, like a car (or something else) jumping over a ski jump or a catapult you have to hit with a toy hammer to let it throw away a toy (like those frog throwing machines in the amusement parks :) ) and more.

Yes, the cannon will of course be weaker in the final game. It's just the mass I have to lower for the cannonballs. I will make it more feel like plastic balls and the player may have 5 shots or so.

Are there any chances of you uploading a demo, or will we have to wait to the end of the compo?
Perhaps it would be the best if you didn't upload a demo. I don't have time to play the game anyway, if I'm supposed to finish my own entre ;)
I will upload something before the end for sure. I need to know if it's working on slower machines like Christinas PCs. But right now it's all no complete game, it's just the controls and (partially) the visuals and physics that are working.

Nice video Dirk. Can I suggest you use dynamite sticks with a fuse instead of a cannon.

As I already mentioned, this cannon just one of several artillery toys. I am a little unsure if I should use things like explosions etc in a childrens playroom. I really would like to add some nice particle effects etc, but I have to test if it fits in the game style.

Thanks for your feedback so far :)


21-02-2007, 01:17 PM
Just my two cents, but since it is in a kids room. And the game does have elements for children's play, if you do add things that blow up or do "real damage" then please make it an option that can be turned off. I want to let my kids play the game, but won't if I can't shut off blowing each other up :).

Course, I'll play it no matter what! Can't wait to see the finished product, as the videos make it look really promising.

21-02-2007, 01:28 PM
Kids love blowing up things. As long as you dont blow up a character that is your opponent I think its ok.

It might be fun to add in some non game play relevant things to shoot at, like a chair, or a toy castle in the corner of the room that people can just use for target practise - might be fun in sort of a sandbox mode.

21-02-2007, 01:52 PM
To clear it up a little:

I will not implement explosions like I would do in a war game or something.
I think I will add something more comic like or just smoke particles (also more comic stylish than real).
I will not add any kind of violence to the game.
There will be no human like characters in the game.

I am currently thinking about further gameplay elements.
I guess I will change it at least the way that you can only pickup bricks with your mouse that are lying near your construction area. In addition to that, the bricks will not lie there at startup! So how do you get them? *hehe* You will get a toy bulldozer, jump into it and push the bricks to your construcition area. This will give a nice fun factor in multiplayer network mode, when all players are trying to grab the bricks quickly to build up their tower. :D
In addition to that, I will add some kind of defense you can add to your construct after it is ready. Things like a pendular in form of a baseball glove that you can place in front of your tower so that with a chance it will intercept the "incoming" artillery projectiles of other players. Or maybe some kind of net. Stabilisators (chewing gum *hehe*) etc...
Maybe I add a whole RTS kind gameplay, where the bricks are your ressources you have to get with the bulldozer... building gives points (which then will be used as money). With the "money" you can then buy artillery, defence, special bricks etc to defend your base and attack the others. An RTS game with kids toys! Oh, my vision becomes clear now *lol* I need more time! :)

21-02-2007, 01:56 PM
building gives points (which then will be used as money). With the "money" you can then buy artillery, defence, special bricks etc

Just dont make it too much of a positive feedback loop. Make sure that its not a case of whoever is doing well just gets strogner and stronger. Have something in your design that lets someone who isn't doing as well to catch up.

This looks like the sort of game I could play with my kids. I'll be better than my 6 year old son at building a tower, if that makes me able to build better defenses then I'll get much too strong for him.

21-02-2007, 02:11 PM
You mean he can't start throwing dead body parts from Iron Strike at the other player's tower? :( Never would thought that would be bad for kids. :roll:

Now I have some serious redesign issues to look at for Garland's Quest. :p

21-02-2007, 02:14 PM
Hmmm.... you are right... but thats how all RTS games work, or not? You get ressources, build things from it and that makes you stronger... if you are strong enough you attack the others...

I could add a given amount of "money" from which you have to buy both, offense and defense... when cash is out, its out :) So you can be more offensive or more defensive, but not both in a full manner.

Btw, you will gain points for destroying the opponents towers of course... that was planned from the beginning. So if someone is good at building, he has not won the game. Someone who shoots down his tower will gain points, while the one with the shot tower will gain less or no points after round 2 (when this round priciple will stay).

I guess a given amount of money would be better... and to let the player not buy artillery from the first minute on, I'd say the player can buy things after his construct has reached a certain height...

21-02-2007, 02:16 PM
@WILL: *lol*

21-02-2007, 03:03 PM
Well what if you gain AP or 'artillery points' for the bigger more elaborate structures they build? That would add some balance as the bigger you make your tower, the harder it can/will fall. Plus you'll have less room to maneuver in as well.

And if you go in rounds, you can buy new pieces from which to build with... considering you gain any hits on other towers...

01-03-2007, 05:15 PM
There is not much progress since some days due to several reasons:

- I quit smoking which dropped me down in a little "motivation hole". But this seems to be over now... it's getting better now from day to day. One week without a single cigarette now :)
- Job had some deadlines, too... the last one is tomorrow.

But I think I am far enough with my entry to upload it as it is. So I just uploaded my basic game engine with the readme.

And if someone of you would like to take a look at my game so far, then don't hesitate to click on the following link, read the readme and start it :)

Oh, and if you do so, please tell me if and how it works for you...



Sascha Willems
01-03-2007, 05:37 PM
I gave it a try and performance is good on my system, around 200 fps with activated AA and 16xAF.

But I noticed some oddities in physics after playing around for some minutes.

First, the simulation is too fast. Maybe it's because of your timing for physics which runs too fast on my machine or maybe it's a general problem which you then can easily tweak. But the bricks fall down very fast over here.

Second, the bricks are too "hard" (or at leas their material), cause they should at least bounce a bit when falling down, especially since the game is played on a carpet.

Third, I think your bricks have the wrong inertia. Are you using Newton's built-in function for calculating inertia? I made several different towers and noticed that the bricks don't react like I expected them most of the time, and I was even able to create something like that, which actually shouldn't be possible :


P.S. : As mentioned in another thread I'm NOT commenting on the actual gameplay itself due to fairness reasons

01-03-2007, 06:17 PM
Hi Sascha,

thanks for the comments.
I know about the most things with the physics. I was playing around with many different values which all have some "oddities" when it comes to buidling towers with the bricks. My biggest problem was, that Newton caused the bricks to "wobble" on each other after they are placed, so you were not able to build towers higher than lets say 3 or 4 bricks.
I eliminated this "problem" by setting a quite high autofreeze treshold, which also causes those "impossible" situations you have shown. But the bricks are not "wobbling" anymore.

I think I have to make some compromises here between physical simulation and gameplay. Its just the basic engine now, not the final game. And I know that tweeking is necessary, but I have to dig a little deeper into Newton when the rest of the gameplay is working.

I use quite high gravity, which lets the bricks fall quite fast... I will take a look at different speeds (CPUs) later if the behaviour is varying on faster PCs... At the moment I can just tell that its running ok on my machine...

Dirk :)

Edit: And yes, I calculate inertia with Newtons functions:

NewtonConvexCollisionCalculateInertialMatrix(Colli sion, @Inertia.x, @Origin.x);
Ixx := Mass * Inertia.x;
Iyy := Mass * Inertia.y;
Izz := Mass * Inertia.z;
NewtonBody := NewtonCreateBody(TGameEngine(GameEngine).NewtonWor ld, Collision);
NewtonBodySetCentreOfMass (NewtonBody, @Origin.x);
NewtonBodySetMassMatrix (NewtonBody, Mass, Ixx, Iyy, Izz);

01-03-2007, 06:37 PM
Hi Dirk,

Is it supposed to start full screen? The reason I ask... no border... it occupies the top left corner of my screen... camera appears to work, BUT, I don't have full control. By that I mean if the program has focus, the cursor stays in the center of the screen and I can't move it. If it doesn't have focus, the cursor follows the mouse perfectly, but of course nothing works.

01-03-2007, 06:42 PM
No fullscreen. It should start with 1024x768 top/left aligned window without border... I guess I should change this, huh? :)

I wonder why you can't get control on the game.... tried to use Alt+Tab to "activate" the window again and click in the window? Anyhow, I think I'll upload a fullscreen version (which I did not do because this version is directly thrown out of my debugging environment and debugging DirectX applications is much easier in windowed mode :) ).

01-03-2007, 06:47 PM
Here is another exe only... could you please overwrite the old exe with this one and tell me if it works for you Christina?


01-03-2007, 06:49 PM
I tried all the standard tricks to get control. Clicked out, clicked back. Alt+Tab. As soon as it gets focus, the cursor locks to the center. When its not in focus, and I move the cursor over it, the hand tracks and moves around perfectly.

01-03-2007, 07:00 PM
With this fullscreen version too??? No control?

01-03-2007, 07:30 PM
I posted as you did I think hon. But I've just tried the full screen version and I'm getting the same thing.

01-03-2007, 07:32 PM
Do the keyboard controls work?

TAB, F3, F4, F5

When steering a vehicle W and S to accel/decel

01-03-2007, 07:45 PM
All the keyboard controls work. Even the brick rotation ones (I can spin the camera until the camera icon is over a brick.... pick up the brick and spin it with the keyboard). The bulldozer seems to work, as does the canon. But when I want free movement with the hand... nothing. Its locked.

01-03-2007, 08:04 PM
could you please use the "exe only link" again?

I uploaded another version, this time without setting DirectInput Mousemode to Exclusive. So you should see the normal arrow cursor and the ingame hand cursor should follow it...

01-03-2007, 08:28 PM
I've just built (and shot down) my first tower :-)

01-03-2007, 08:37 PM
Ok, I guess it worked then *lol*

Hmmm, strange that exclusive mode seems to make problems on your computer. I will keep that in mind during the development...

Thanks for testing this out for me!

01-03-2007, 09:44 PM
I believe Athena is confused about the controls. It is not possible to move the camera when the hand is visible. When the left mousebutton is clicked a camera appears. Only then is it possible to move the camera.

Its definitely pretty advanced for the 2nd stage though. There's a lot the 'player' can already do. The controls are tbh not that easy to use, but there's for sure plenty of time to improve that a bit.

I got around 70fps on my laptop which is not that bad I think.

01-03-2007, 11:24 PM
She's not confused, I also had that problem on my PC at work, the cursor would stay locked in the middle of the screen and not move no matter what you do... But now it works alright :wink:

Nice progress Dirk!
I actually enjoy smashing towers with the buldozer rather than shutting them down :D

02-03-2007, 04:07 AM
I actually enjoy smashing towers with the buldozer rather than shutting them down :D

Hehe! This will not be possible in the final game so enjoy it as long as you can :)

The construction areas of other player are non passable for your vehicles later on. Otherwise you could steal the "ressources" from others while he is gathering new bricks... and... it would make the artillery part senseless, huh? :)

Btw, I use Omega input component for the DirectInput access... Anyone has an idea why the exclusive mode for mouse makes problems on some hardware? On my machines there is no problem with it...
anyhow, I will use the non exclusive mode now and just hide the system cursor...

02-03-2007, 09:31 AM
wow... you already have 4 video's :shock:

They're all looking awesome. Can't wait to see more. :P

02-03-2007, 12:42 PM
I wanted to test your game, but my computer at work can't run the game. However I wouldn't worry. The computer hasn't been designed to run games and I'm even in doubt wheter Directx9 is installed on it or not.
I'll just have to test it when I get home.

On the other hand, I tried a small game yesterday which totally reminded me of your game. It's called Soup Toys (http://www.souptoys.com/). You can build towers with it and shoot down with cannons afterwards + much much more. Perhaps you can get some inspiration from it ;)

02-03-2007, 06:54 PM
*lol* This souptoy stuff is funny :)

02-03-2007, 07:44 PM
I'm glad to say that I just uploaded my "final stage 2" upload. I fixed the mouse issue that occured on Athenas PC and I added a configuration INI where fullscreen mode and resolution can be set. Since these little changes are all I did not upload a new version here for public tests. There is nothing new to show.

02-03-2007, 08:29 PM
When I try and run it all I get is a grey box over part of my screen. Then after about 10 mins I hit ALT+F4 and it closed. No idea why, but it doesn't run for me :(

EDIT: Never mind, just saw the exe only download. Downloaded and overwrote, everything works fine. Now can't wait to play it :).

02-03-2007, 08:39 PM
The first version had 2xAntialiasing enabled. It seems that you video card does not support it and thus DirectX did not get initialized.

I will make AA setting configurable in the final version... The exe-only upload had AA setting disabled, thats why it works for you then :)

17-03-2007, 04:23 PM
No updates for a quite long time...

I did not do anything on my entry since the deadline for stage 2. I did not have the time. But today I started again, having in mind that the already spent time is just too "expensive" to throw it away. So I started with some general things... like a game-stage system which is ready to go now. I can have as much stages in my game as I want and with a single call the game fades out the current stage and fades in the desired stage.

Stages are considered as something like intro, menu, game levels/rounds, ending scene etc.

So this is a good progress for today because I already implemented some pseudo stages for menu, ending etc. And because I also wanted to "see" something I made some graphics for the intro, just to make my efforts visible :)

So here is a little screenshot of my WIP intro, just to show I am still working (again!) on my entry.

The spotlights are moving, the title is fading in and out and the background is also fading when the whole scene fades in and out... all in all a very polished appearance of introducing my name and the games title *lol*

Further intro stages are planned of course... I have something very nice in my mind :)


17-03-2007, 04:58 PM
Do the spot lights calculate real-time shadows?

17-03-2007, 05:10 PM
Hehe, no... it's just the intro... nothing special.

17-03-2007, 11:06 PM
Quite small video showing the "text fading intro scene" in action.


18-03-2007, 11:37 AM
That's really cool! Now all you need is some fitting music to accompany it.

18-03-2007, 12:35 PM
Yep, I am already in contact with a musician :) Hopefully he has something for me to listen to soon...

22-04-2007, 06:47 PM
Hey guys...

Unfortunately I need to tell you that I am definetely out of the competition.

There are several reasons for this decision of mine:

- I don't have the time
- I have three other projects I need to do in my spare time which bing money into my pockets!
- I stopped my Valgard project for the compo which made much more fun to work on. So I will resume it now in the very rare free hours and try to get this one finished as soon as I can.
- I had some problems with my health the last months... now that several docs did not find any organic problems, it seems that mental factors are causing my problems. So I am now trying to make myself less stress. In fact, this is the main reason why I decided to put this project in the drawer of my shelf. It's also the reason why I quit smoking 10 weeks ago (the best thing I did in the last years :) )

Ok, enough chattering. I know it is very sad for the competition to loose another entrant. But I am just not able to continue this game right now without loosing money or getting stress. So I hope you all understand this decision.


22-04-2007, 06:56 PM
A tough decision no doubt.
Your game looked very promising, but I can understand your reasoning. I hope you'll find the time again to continue it, someday.

In any case, I wish you all the best.

24-04-2007, 07:47 AM
Oh Dirk, that is truly sad to hear.
I really hope you get better soon; best wishes!
And no matter what, make sure you do submit your entry, it will still be quite a challenge for some of us! :wink:

24-04-2007, 06:36 PM
Sorry to hear that Dirk. Please make sure that we have the latest version before the deadline though.

And if you can just resubmit it for each deadline so the judges can give you the points for the goals you completed early.

You'll still be scored at the Final Judging of course. :)