Online since 1998

Bringing Back Bot

BOT - ThumbnailI have great plans for this website — like launching another book and creating an online arcade — but I’ll have to grind through some tedious work first. I’m thinking about bringing back BOT. This could be the first complete game in the new Photics Arcade. But to do that, I’ll have to port the project from GameSalad to Stencyl. It’s quite mundane work, but I’m making great progress. I’ll be posting comments in this post about my progress, so you can follow along.

In addition to being a cool online game for the site, this is also a great project for the Stencyl book. The lessons learned while porting BOT to Stencyl should fill many chapters with great content. I’m feeling pretty confident with my Stencyl skills, but I still haven’t published a complete game with the software. BOT could change that. I believe that BOT missed its full potential on the App Store. I worked too hard on this game for it to fall into oblivion. I’m determined to bring it back.

You can watch the progress at… http://photics.com/games/bot/

10 Responses to Bringing Back Bot

  • Tonight’s work is mostly just mindless typing and clicking. I forgot how many attributes I created for this game. I counted 146. I’m a bit tired, so that number might be off. I got the main base (Level X3 Y4) in place though. TANK can walk around and bump into walls.

  • Whew, I’m getting sleepy! It was a moderately productive evening. I’m close to getting the sword working. But unfortunately, it seems that something is wrong with my expressions. That’s what they were called in GameSalad anyway. I’m not sure what it’s called in Stencyl… formulas?

    Maybe it’s just called math. :lol:

    When compared to GameSalad, many things are reversed in Stencyl. I think I might have my cos/sin mixed up. The sword is not spawning at the right spot. I think I can fix it, but I’m sleepy. Maybe I’ll get it tomorrow.

    Tonight’s goal was to get the sword working, but I managed to accomplish something else… a quick debug mode. I might leave that in as a hidden feature when the game is relaunched. I also managed to get some additional notes for my Stencyl book. I may be tired, but I feel good! It’s nice to be developing games again.

  • I figured out what was wrong with the sword math. I had to switch degrees to radians… stupid radians! The sword is working now. It even has a custom collision shape for the pointed edge.

  • The controls turned out OK. TANK can be controlled with the mouse, the keyboard or a combination of both — and without having to change settings!

  • I was a bit concerned with creating a Heads-Up Display (HUD) and separate Sound/Music setting. I wasn’t sure how to do that with Stencyl. Just in general, the pause screen is complex. I felt like giving up on this project. But I stuck with it, and I managed to get the system working. I’m not looking forward to all the work involved with the powerup, weapons, equipment and game options buttons. I figured that this project would be tough, but it’s harder than I thought it would be.

  • Wow, this pause menu is really tedious. I managed to get a nice fade-in effect though. I had to redesign the pause screen to work with Stencyl. Instead of a flying through space effect, the background is faded. While I like the space effect, I can save it for the shops. This new method of pausing is much quicker, so it can speed up the game.

    Weapon selecting is almost working. The main part missing is the addition of more guns. There only one working gun right now. I added the traditional Photics cheat code to make testing easier though.

  • It’s been rough. Many times I thought about quitting this project. I kept with it though. Now the Jetpack (TANK’s quick transport home), Map and another level are online. The pause menu took a lot more time than I thought it would. I’m still battling with some issues with the controls, but overall the project is still moving forward.

  • There is a bug when I try to go to the new section of the map. Tank walks all the way to the far left and can’t be moved from there, he just keeps trying to walk farther. Also, what is the traditional Photics cheat? I can make a debugging window come up but that’s it. Keep up the good work! Btw I watched all the episodes of Robot Combat League so far. I really wanted Commander to win, as he kinda looks like a green Tank but he lost the first round :(

    • The entrance bug is a known issue. But since you reported it, I decided to post a fix right away. It’s online now.

      There are two developer modes, but how to active it is a secret. The profile mode is activated by right-clicking the game and selecting “Show Profiler”. That shows memory usage and Frames Per Second.

      There are some episodes of Robot Combat league on syfy.com that I haven’t watched yet. But since I’ve been so busy with BOT, and I started watching “How the States Got Their Shape”, I haven’t had much of a chance to watch. Maybe I should take a break tonight and catch up.

  • I’m taking a break from this project. It’s much larger than I thought it would be. Technical issues with the Physics is really annoying me. (Right now, the enemies die faster than they should as collisions are often counted multiple times.) I’m also wondering about what to do with Night Vision and the clouds, so I’m getting frustrated. And even though I’m not planning to republish this game to the iTunes App store, there are some issues with iOS.

    So instead, I returned to the port of Annoyed Tomatoes. I’m feeling pretty good about this one. I made some great progress today – like adding the Mission Brief video! :)

    I’m thinking that the port of BOT is on-hold until I finish up with the port of Annoyed Tomatoes. I’ve been using Stencyl for almost two years. I’m thinking I should actually finish a project. And right now, Annoyed Tomatoes is much closer to completion.

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