Xerra's Blog

Drunken coder ramblings

Getting near Xmas —

It’s getting near Xmas now and, like everyone else, there’s lots of stuff going on that has made Boulderdash development a bit slower than i would have expected.

So, time for an update, so everyone can be sure I’ve not actually fallen asleep.

To start with this month, I’ve been mainly working on the AI issue with the Fireflies and the Butterflies. They work a little better now but are still prone to cheat by accelerating to warp speed for no logical reason. Additionally, there’s still some problem with the game processing that lets them sometimes get away with a rock on the head.

I’ve also had to work a lot more on the sound as, while it sounded crazy and mad to me, Aaron thinks it’s too random and distracting from the game. Looking further at the original, I could see straight away that some sounds should have been impact only, not constant when events are in progress, such as rocks falling. I’ve tightened a fair bit of this up now but am also playing with sound editors so I could possibly go to sounds far more consistent with the original. There’s also a couple of game elements not in yet which are sound-enhanced so I was using stuff when it wasn’t the right time as a result. So there’s a bit more work to be done on this area.

Another major part of the original design has now been mostly finished – apart from maybe some slight tweaking – and that’s the transition from the title screen to game start. I always had it in mind to change the logo into rocks and have them drop using the game script for processing rocks. In the end I had to modify it a fair bit to get it doing what I needed, as the background has to scroll up the opposite way. This sequence will also be used to clear the title screen logo area so the credits can scroll through it so it was worth getting done now as I’ve finally built the credits screen image to run through it. I’ll be using Paradroid’s surface code to get that running before the next update.

These changes have shortened the to-do list nicely and I’ve got my mind-set that the game is feature complete so I won’t be adding to it. There’s still the magic walls and Amoeba to put in and the start/end level bits to go but not much else apart from more testing. Once the AI has finally started behaving then the end is definitely in sight.

Happy Xmas one and all.


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