Engine Update and Planning Ahead

The Unity engine was updated somewhat earlier today to version 3.2, adding some nice improvements, particularly the water which should really show in some screenshots I should be able to post tomorrow or so. Unfortunately I’m having some issues getting it to work right now, which is part of the reason I didn’t post anything new today. Overall my spare time begins to significantly decrease to work on my projects, and becoming more of a side-project to my interactive entertainment degree study. I will however try to post a few screenshots tomorrow, including the somewhat experimental animation cycling system I’m using.

Right now I’ve had some ideas of another project that I’d like to get working on soon, as well as renewing my iPhone Developer License for it sometime soon. Although somewhat inspired by movies and older games, this time it will be using my own planned design, and will serve primarily as a giant tutorial to myself rather than an actual game, although by chance it may turn out into one, most likely quite simple however.

Although the idea behind vehicle combat isn’t new or unique, it is an interesting way of putting a lot of things to test. Although my best skill with the development of a game is programming, this is a huge category. Right now I am not particularly sure which category I’m most interested in or most acquainted with (although general feature implementation seems to be a good guess). I also don’t want to limit myself to one category, and realistically approach somewhat of a group that I believe I am able to cope with.

The project will most certainly help assist me in my tertiary study, and will give me somewhat of a planned ahead (yet fair) advantage of further experience.

Particular points of interest that I will be investigating in my design are:

  • Vehicle/Driving physics
  • Advanced physics (beyond your basic ‘collision’ – e.g. variable levels of impacts)
  • Procedural damage
  • Further look into more complex AI (simple waypoints won’t cut it in a game like this)
  • A point distribution system/customization (vehicles, weapon loadouts, etc.)

This should give me somewhat of a rough idea how your average driving game works, as well as some components you wouldn’t usually find in such games.

Right now I’m playing the guessing game with a series of game/graphics engines and have a few choices. I can stick with Unity, which is easy to use, a complete engine, allowing me to smooth into 3D games, although is somewhat restricted. There’s also Ogre, although I’ve ran some small-scale tests I’m yet to grasp it, although it’s very extensive and open-source, and there’s many others, although I really can’t afford spending thousands of dollars on your average AAA engine that I wouldn’t be able to completely efficiently use anyway. My bets are currently on Unity, at least until whatever is after this for more proper game development. Although the programming behind this will be much simpler, core principles still apply while leaving advanced mathematics that I am yet to grasp out of it for me to approach later on.