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Post Tagged with: Level Design

Physics Editor + Corona

Physics Editor + Corona

Got to spend a decent bit of time working on the game the last couple of days. I decided to refactor the code and put it into a new file. I’ve now implemented it inside an API called ‘storyboard’ which handles having different scenes in an app (eg. a menu screen, game over screen, game screen etc). The code had gotten a bit messy from working on it so I went through and condensed duplicated stuff into functions and cleared out old variables and other stuff that had become redundant.

So now the game is in a nice clean new form now I’ve been trying to nail down the controls. Adding the sliding ability of the player has proved to be a headache. There are so many different scenarios I need to account for during collisions with various things and how that affects whatever action the player is doing at the time. Also to enable sliding using the physics engine I broke the player object into about 5 different physics bodies. The physics engine is a bit buggy and often the player physics bodies will sink into other bodies such as walls etc which can mess the logic that needs to be performed. Also I’ve found that when the platform objects sink into the player object sometimes the player will get caught on one of his other physics bodies so will get stuck on the corner of the platform. I’ll have to keep working the controls to get them nice and polished.

Also decided on how I’ll create the levels. I’ll be using a combo of PhysicsEditor and Photoshop. This way I can draw out the collision detection in a basic transparent png and then map those physics properties on to a more detailed jpg or png art file. Here’s an example:

Untitled-1

This would be the collision detection. I just import this into PhysicsEditor, click ‘Trace’ and it’s done. Now I can make any kind of level section I can imagine. I’m hoping to have interior and exterior segments to add some variety.

Until next time!

 

30 July, 20130 comments
Corona Level Editors

Corona Level Editors

I decided I should get some temporary level sections implemented so I can make sure the whole system is running smoothly before I start adding content. So I went and had a look at what my options were for creating the levels.

My first option is to just code the placement of the level assets manually. This however is extremely tedious and feels like there must be a better way. So I went looking.

LH128The first tool I looked into was LevelHelper. At first this tool seemed to be exactly what I was looking for, however it wasn’t until I’d spent most of the day learning to use it that I found out it is not really useful for an endless runner game. This creates a level that is dependant on the LevelHelper API and creates an encapsulated level that you can’t fully access as well as you could if you coded it. So making sections that spawn randomly and then move is difficult if not impossible with this tool. If however I was making a game with defined levels then this tool would be great.

The guy that made this has also made a couple of other great apps including CodeHelper (which I’m currently using) and SpriteHelper. Both of these support Corona and are useful in your toolset.

Check LevelHelper out here: http://www.gamedevhelper.com/levelhelper/

tiled-icon-128The next level tool I tried was called Tiled. This is a great app and really fun to use. The problem I found with Tiled was similar to above. It can export the level to either a JSON or LUA file but then you need a third party add on to bring that into Corona. Again there are just too many hoops to jump through that make coding the game more difficult especially if there are things being utilised that are not under my control. Maybe there is a way to use this in the way I would like but I’m not experienced enough to know how.

Again tiled is great if you want to make predefined levels rather than a procedural one.
You can find Tiled here: http://www.mapeditor.org/index.html

The only other one I’ve found so far is by Karnak Games: http://karnakgames.com/wp/corona-svg-level-builder/ however this one costs US$99 and has no demo that I know of to check if it will be useful. From what I’ve read it again does the same thing as above and prevents you from full access.

If CoronaLabs would get their level editor out at some point it would be great:

What I really need is an editor that just allows me to freely place my assets and then spits out a Lua table that contains the asset parameters that I can then do with what I want. Perhaps in the future when I have learned more programming this will be something easy to achieve. Until then however I’ll keep my eyes out for other options and just continue using a mixture of photoshop and code to make the levels.

If anyone else knows of some good options let me know!

25 July, 20134 comments
Making Test Level Sections

Making Test Level Sections

LEVEL_section01 LEVEL_section02 LEVEL_section03

Today I did a bit of work just creating a few level sections just to get something in there to get a feel of how I’d like to design the level. The level will be made up of a number of random ‘segments’ that will be randomly stitched together to create an endless procedural level. I’m making each segment quite big, about 3 times the screen size as I want there to be multiple paths you can take and have the chance of finding hidden things. The game will be mainly about exploration except you won’t have the luxury of going back to choose a different path. You as the player will have to dynamically choose paths on the fly and see where they lead. Paths that are more difficult will reap greater rewards whereas easier ones may allow you to maintain your focus. Sometimes choosing a more difficult path will be hazardous as there may not be as many focus orbs and you may risk losing focus on that path if you are not focused enough before embarking on it.

Today at the Gnostic class I came up with another cool idea that I’m planning to stick in the game – but more on that later. The main thing we learn in Gnosticism is meditation and often while meditating and attempting to prevent thoughts sometime I’ll slip and have a great vision of an idea for the game or my comic CZEPTA. This leads me to believe that harnessing meditation as a way of conjuring and exploring ideas for my work could be powerful.

When life and art walk hand in hand magic is born.

CZG

P!!

22 July, 20130 comments