Thursday, June 30, 2011

Progress is Slow, kind of.

Over the past 5 days a lot of the changes have been small. I don't have any fancy screenshots to show off, but currently, I'm rethinking certain aspects of the animation engine's core. I've notice that there are further optimizations that I've yet to tap into, and key features I neglected to add.

So I'm afraid to say I'm going to back-pedal a bit before adding anything new.

Sunday, June 26, 2011

Managed to Get a Video

Not the best, but here's the animator showing a primitive walk cycle I pulled together in about 15 minutes.

Saturday, June 25, 2011

Not Much to Say

I've been messing around with the terrain engine. It's a good thing too, as I've squashed a few big bugs and brought light to new ones.

One of the bugs was that it wouldn't be able to show terrains with more than 1000 or so polygons. No errors given, it would just stop. But now it is fixed and can support models up to 63368 polygons per ground id.

As another bug I've noticed is that it sometimes the left most side of the ground sometimes gets creased when loading heightmaps and it is very noticeable when smoothing.

No Pictures.

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Progress on Terrain

It's been a while since my last post. I think I was a tad bit aggressive previously with how often I posted.

Anyway, I have fixed normal calulating and smoothing the mesh. Now, not only does it support random terrain but height maps as well. Just paint the terrain on an image and import it.

Here's how height mapping looks:
The input
Perspective from ground
Viewed from the air

But it hasn't always worked that smooth...
: (
Anyway that's all for now. I'll have to think of what to do now.

In other news: .....the adapter has not come in yet.....

Friday, June 17, 2011

Nothing but Bad.

So I was out shopping for supplies for this game. I had two things to get: a decent microphone so I could record sounds, and a mannequin that I could use to plan out poses in the animator.
After driving around four stores I found a little $10 mannequin (I didn't expect finding one) and bought it. Then I found a $40 microphone and I bought that. I then took everything home and opened my spoils to find... The microphone had a 1/4" cable.


They should really say these things on the box. All I got before purchase was a picture of the microphone and its cable (which on the picture looked 1/8").
I hoped it wasn't too much of a problem so I went and  I ordered an adapter for it on Amazon, but Friday is a horrible day to order anything online. It probably won't come in for another 1-2 weeks.
Well. At least the microphone problem is dealt with: It's just a matter of waiting.

So then I decided to open the case to my mannequin, only to find out that the legs don't rotate. Cool. That's exactly what I did not want. I think I'm going to have to break off his legs and do something that would allow them to rotate. Maybe something involving Velcro.

In other news: Height checking has been fixed. Normals and smoothing: Not so much.

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Terrain Engine

Alright. I haven't been able to work on it much for the past two days but I've started on a random terrain generator so I could build the Terrain Engine on top of it. But I've also been running into a couple of problems. It can read the height when I isolate the positions to either X or Y but it jumps erratically when I join them. Which is not the effect I'm going for.

Anyway, not much to say for this post, but hopefully I'll have things going by next post.

Monday, June 13, 2011

The 3D Skeleton Animator

This is where the magic happens. Right as I'm typing this, I'm finishing it up and squashing the bugs.
Model shown with applied stretching

This program takes what we finished in the other program and adds some motion. You edit each part over the frames by editing the rotation vector and how much it should be rotated by, there's also another localz rotation (called turn) that allows for smoother tweens.
Tween Window shown with momentum tween with alterations

Speaking of Tweens: the tweening in this program is incredibly powerful and customizable. There are four built-in algorithms (linear,exponential,logarithmic,momentum) which you can add and even then you can physically alter the tween graph.
It also comes with other functions and doohickeys, like:
Onion Skin enabled animation
  • Remapping Skeletons
  • Onion Skins
  • Flipping
  • Animation loops
  • Skeleton Offset
  • Adding Animations
  • Splitting Animations
  • Split Tweening
And once you've finished making the animation, you can compile which adds the animations, skeleton class, and the components to growing pool of game resources.

Frame selection expanded

I'm quite happy with it. Even though the interfaces between the programs aren't the greatest, I'm proud of the accomplishments made under the hood.
I think maybe the next post will involve the game engine, but as of writing this, I haven't started, yet.

It's come a long way.

Saturday, June 11, 2011

The 3D Skeleton Assembler

Yes. It's a 3D game. But I haven't started on the 'game' yet, but rather I've been working on the things I would need.

(Click for a larger image)

I thought I might as well describe a program I've made to help in the process. It doesn't really have a name, but the title "The 3D Skeleton Assembler" seems apt as that is exactly what it does. You import models and assign them their parents. Then you also input their offset and they rotate around that point of the parent. You can also change the origin of the model itself if it is incorrect in the model file.

On the left there is a scroll list that shows you all of the parts of the skeletons. There are buttons to delete the part, change the model file of the part, scale the model, flip the model, and to reverse the winding order of the model.

Once you've gotten the configurations down to how you want, you save the assembled model file and stores its unique skeleton class id if it is a new class.

Tune in next time to see where we go next with the file.

The Beginning

Hey guys. Jon here.
Hopefully in time this blog will be filled with progress on the development of my current project in GM.
At the moment there isn't much but a template and an introduction.