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Author Topic: DC needs a fun game project that multiple people can contribute to  (Read 8164 times)
mouser
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« on: January 19, 2011, 01:37:59 AM »

I got my start coding because i wanted to code games to play, a lot of people did.

It's just deplorable that DC doesnt have a serious inhouse developed game that people on the site can extend and contribute to by creating levels, etc.

Can't someone at DC start some kind of game coding project that the rest of us can contribute to, by creating levels or missions or adding code?  Something that captures the fun and humor spirit of DC?
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mahesh2k
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« Reply #1 on: January 19, 2011, 04:46:50 AM »

Hmm, ya got me thinking on this now.  ;)I'll see if i can come up with rough mockup for game. My preference is tower defense or scrolling shooter game. I can't get into more complicated than these two. Sad

By the way any ironpython users here want to jump into this ?  cheesy
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mouser
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« Reply #2 on: January 19, 2011, 04:49:07 AM »

tower defense!  Thmbsup Thmbsup Thmbsup
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kamahl
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« Reply #3 on: January 19, 2011, 08:10:43 AM »

I'd love to help build a Tower Defense game cheesy
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timns
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« Reply #4 on: January 19, 2011, 08:27:34 AM »

Count me in if I can help in some way.  Thmbsup
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« Reply #5 on: January 19, 2011, 08:47:39 AM »

BTW my next year's NANY entry will be a game. Let me know when Perry sets up the topic  Grin
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Deozaan
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« Reply #6 on: January 19, 2011, 09:43:29 PM »

In what way(s) could people contribute to a tower defense game? Obviously coders could help program, artists could make graphics, and musicians could help with music or maybe sound effects, but in what other ways would someone be able to contribute to a TD game?
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timns
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« Reply #7 on: January 19, 2011, 09:45:58 PM »

In what way(s) could people contribute to a tower defense game? Obviously coders could help program, artists could make graphics, and musicians could help with music or maybe sound effects, but in what other ways would someone be able to contribute to a TD game?

I think level design is often underrated. Also, the tedious things that those high-falutin' coders overlook, like documentation, help, tutorials. Ooh, and my favourite: play testing!
« Last Edit: January 19, 2011, 09:47:50 PM by timns » Logged

Renegade
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« Reply #8 on: January 19, 2011, 09:51:02 PM »

In what way(s) could people contribute to a tower defense game? Obviously coders could help program, artists could make graphics, and musicians could help with music or maybe sound effects, but in what other ways would someone be able to contribute to a TD game?

Level design. Game mechanics. There's lots.

On the coding side, there are a lot of different skill sets here at DC. How would/could/should things be setup to let the maximum number of people participate?

I am a bit bias, but .NET would let anyone write in any language and the core game could then consume libraries (DLLs). It would also allow for specialized things like DSP or math-heavy stuff to be done in a functional language like F#, while other things were done in C++ or whatever.

Just an idea anyways.
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kamahl
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« Reply #9 on: January 19, 2011, 09:54:12 PM »

In what way(s) could people contribute to a tower defense game? Obviously coders could help program, artists could make graphics, and musicians could help with music or maybe sound effects, but in what other ways would someone be able to contribute to a TD game?

I think level design is often underrated. Also, the tedious things that those high-falutin' coders overlook, like documentation, help, tutorials. Ooh, and my favourite: play testing!

A lot of design/concepting stuff can be done by just about anyone.  This includes:
  • Level Design
  • Tower Design
  • Enemy design
  • The name tongue

On the coding side, there are a lot of different skill sets here at DC. How would/could/should things be setup to let the maximum number of people participate?

I am a bit bias, but .NET would let anyone write in any language and the core game could then consume libraries (DLLs). It would also allow for specialized things like DSP or math-heavy stuff to be done in a functional language like F#, while other things were done in C++ or whatever.
My personal preference would be to build the base in XNA (.NET), and load plugins for the content.  The way I envision it, the base game has very little in it, and uses the plugins to make a completely modular game.  (And we might even be able to do some funky stuff like reusing the monsters directly into an RPG game, if we design it right cheesy)
« Last Edit: January 19, 2011, 09:59:24 PM by kamahl » Logged
Deozaan
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« Reply #10 on: January 19, 2011, 09:59:05 PM »

Well, I may be misinterpreting what mouser means, but it is my impression that he is talking about a game with a community. I don't mean to sound negative, but documentation, help, tutorials (which are pretty much the same thing), as well as level/tower/enemy design don't make much of a community. An editor of some kind would probably be good, but I think a TD game would have to have some great elements and strategy to it to make a lot of different levels worthwhile.

I guess what I'm saying is, even though I really like TD games I don't see the genre as necessarily fostering a big community where everyone can play and contribute and enjoy. Does anyone have any other suggestions for what type (genre) of game to make?

Actually, before we all rush in and clamor for a TD game (or a game of any genre) maybe we should have a bit of a discussion first to better define the goals for the project so we can choose a genre that will best suit those goals.
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mouser
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« Reply #11 on: January 19, 2011, 10:00:29 PM »

Quote
In what way(s) could people contribute to a tower defense game? Obviously coders could help program, artists could make graphics, and musicians could help with music or maybe sound effects, but in what other ways would someone be able to contribute to a TD game?

this is really important -- and what i was trying to get at in my post -- the game should support USER GENERATED CONTENT.

the easiest way would be if users could create and submit custom levels, either using a level editor or a simple data file format.
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kamahl
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« Reply #12 on: January 19, 2011, 10:08:31 PM »

Well, I may be misinterpreting what mouser means, but it is my impression that he is talking about a game with a community. I don't mean to sound negative, but documentation, help, tutorials (which are pretty much the same thing), as well as level/tower/enemy design don't make much of a community. An editor of some kind would probably be good, but I think a TD game would have to have some great elements and strategy to it to make a lot of different levels worthwhile.

I guess what I'm saying is, even though I really like TD games I don't see the genre as necessarily fostering a big community where everyone can play and contribute and enjoy. Does anyone have any other suggestions for what type (genre) of game to make?

Actually, before we all rush in and clamor for a TD game (or a game of any genre) maybe we should have a bit of a discussion first to better define the goals for the project so we can choose a genre that will best suit those goals.

The thing I like about TD games, is that they're relatively easy to extend.  Creating an RPG or RTS will involve a lot more effort for someone wanting to casually contribute a small chunk of the game, and therefore discourage people from contributing.   I'm going to throw together a simple base Tower class, and a Slow Tower, which should demonstrate the ease of extensibility for a TD.

But yes, we need to define clear goals before we jump in with the coding.  Otherwise we'll end up needing to reshuffle the code to get plugins to work properly (Or break any plugins people have already made, by changing an Interface, or shuffling methods around).

Oh, and we'll want at least some of the content to be parsed from XML, so that non-programmers can contribute - We'll probably want to make a GUI editor to generate said XML as well.
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Deozaan
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« Reply #13 on: January 19, 2011, 10:14:57 PM »

The thing I like about TD games, is that they're relatively easy to extend.  Creating an RPG or RTS will involve a lot more effort for someone wanting to casually contribute a small chunk of the game, and therefore discourage people from contributing.   I'm going to throw together a simple base Tower class, and a Slow Tower, which should demonstrate the ease of extensibility for a TD.

Sure, it's probably fairly trivial to add a new kind of tower or enemy type in a TD game, but the hard part is in the balance. Some problems that plague TD games are that (1) you could beat them using just one or two kinds of towers. (2) One strategy worked on every level. (3) Or another problem I've seen a lot is with the difficulty (which also has to do with balance, IMO). You'd be doing great for 86 waves and then suddenly it became impossible.
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Renegade
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« Reply #14 on: January 19, 2011, 10:18:33 PM »

TD lets you start small. A full RPG is simply a bad idea. A smaller game to start with lets you get a team working well first. Later, a bigger project is more reasonable.

i.e. Make sure your first goal is to touch the tree-tops while you're reaching for the stars.
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Deozaan
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« Reply #15 on: January 19, 2011, 10:24:19 PM »

Yeah, RPG is probably a bad idea. But what about other smaller-scale projects?

Platformer, racing games, Metroidvania (kind of a platformer), Adventure (think Zelda), etc.? (FYI I'm thinking of all of these as 2D games)
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Renegade
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« Reply #16 on: January 19, 2011, 10:29:22 PM »

Yeah, RPG is probably a bad idea. But what about other smaller-scale projects?

Platformer, racing games, Metroidvania (kind of a platformer), Adventure (think Zelda), etc.? (FYI I'm thinking of all of these as 2D games)

I think you're bang on there.

The best course of action, as I see it, is to look into game engines first. Developing a new game engine is just a really, really stupid idea. Why reinvent the wheel?

There are lots out there.
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Deozaan
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« Reply #17 on: January 19, 2011, 10:29:54 PM »

Also sim games, where you can build a world or city or house or country or whatever. What kind of games allow you to create things that you enjoy showing off? What kind of games have things in them that interest you enough to want to see someone else's creations?
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Deozaan
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« Reply #18 on: January 19, 2011, 10:43:06 PM »

And lets not forget puzzle games. The Incredible Machine, Chu Chu Rocket, Lemmings, ... Uh... and others. Those are pretty easy to add content (levels) that could help create a community.
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mouser
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« Reply #19 on: January 19, 2011, 10:53:43 PM »

Quote
And lets not forget puzzle games. The Incredible Machine, Chu Chu Rocket, Lemmings, .

definitely  thumbs up thumbs up thumbs up

what about a puzzle game where on each level you have to solve the puzzle that will let cody collect all the coins without getting killed.
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kamahl
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« Reply #20 on: January 19, 2011, 11:04:18 PM »

Also sim games, where you can build a world or city or house or country or whatever. What kind of games allow you to create things that you enjoy showing off? What kind of games have things in them that interest you enough to want to see someone else's creations?
And lets not forget puzzle games. The Incredible Machine, Chu Chu Rocket, Lemmings, ... Uh... and others. Those are pretty easy to add content (levels) that could help create a community.
A sim game would be easy to extend, but hideous to get started.

A puzzle game on the other hand would be nice, but they generally exhaust their level ideas fairly quickly.

Oh, and please don't double-post.

Sure, it's probably fairly trivial to add a new kind of tower or enemy type in a TD game, but the hard part is in the balance. Some problems that plague TD games are that (1) you could beat them using just one or two kinds of towers. (2) One strategy worked on every level. (3) Or another problem I've seen a lot is with the difficulty (which also has to do with balance, IMO). You'd be doing great for 86 waves and then suddenly it became impossible.
Why not have the game choose a random subsection of the total number of towers at the start of the level?  If you don't have the Flamethrower tower all the time, you can't possibly use the strategy based around it.

And if it does get impossible, why not simply design a few waves in the middle, or make a tower that might be useful in that situation.  Of course, balance is always going to be an issue, and creating an overpowered tower would definitely be an issue.  
I do have a solution around here somewhere though.  

A while back, I started work on a procedurally generated TD game.  The computer would score the power of your setup, based on a combination of dps and how well the last wave fared. It would then generate a wave which is slightly stronger than it thinks you can handle.  I designed it based on the L4D2 Director - It targets weak points, and subtly throws wave after wave against them (I had a game where it threw five or so flying waves in a row,and then a fast ground wave when it realized I was onto it) tongue
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Renegade
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« Reply #21 on: January 19, 2011, 11:25:22 PM »

Sim, puzzle, TD, racer, platform... so many choices...

http://www.visual3d.net/

http://www.devmaster.net/engines/  <<< EVERYTHING is listed here.

http://vortex2d.codeplex.com/
http://www.vortex2d.net/

http://about.wildtangent.com/partner

http://unity3d.com/

There are a LOT of options out there...

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mouser
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« Reply #22 on: January 19, 2011, 11:43:19 PM »

Quote
Why not have the game choose a random subsection of the total number of towers at the start of the level?


the nice thing about letting users contribute level designs is that its the USERS that balance and playtest levels to come up with interesting puzzles and challenges, rather than having the game try to figure out how to generate random diversity, etc.
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mouser
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« Reply #23 on: January 20, 2011, 03:35:49 AM »

A puzzle game starring Twiggles + Cobbe, where users could create new levels, would be extremely cool.
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« Reply #24 on: January 20, 2011, 04:53:30 AM »

If I could program like you folks I would go with a multiplayer over the Internet 'Worms' type game.  The ones that are out there now are just not that great.  I would even be willing to pony up bandwidth for a central server for an in game server browser.
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