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Make me a demo game!

#16 User is offline Guess Who 

Posted 17 April 2012 - 08:23 PM

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I think a level like Ice Cap would be great as a tech demo. Snow particles, lots of room for showcasing shaders (water shaders, specularity on ice, refraction through some ice, glowing bridges (lol)), a variety of lighting scenarios as you go through the caves and outdoors, breakable ice to demonstrate physics, etc.

#17 User is offline Heat-Nova 

Posted 17 April 2012 - 09:08 PM

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I can't really say anything on the first two questions as I'm still learning game programming. But for the other 2:

1). What gameplay style should it follow? I think it should be a mix of Sonic 3&K, Sonic Adventure 2, and Generations. With Sonic 3 physics and level design (As in character specific paths as well as different routes for each one and a main path everyone can take) Sonic Adventure 2 styled controls with the Quick-Step, however when going fast the character should play a second running animation and then control like Generations, with leaning to the sides to turn and drifting to make sharper turns. IMO I would like to see characters other than Sonic (not in the demo but somewhere in the near future of this engine), I loved playing as Tails in Adventure 1.

2)How can we showcase specific feature sets with this demo? Like SOTI said we have 3 acts and each having certain sections to show off different aspects of the Engine. For example: In act 1 you start off on top of a big hill that goes down, up a little, and then into a wavy like place like in the beginning of CPZ Act 1 (or was it 2?) to show off how close the physics are to the Genesis titles.

Going a bit off-topic here but I would love to fully support this Engine once I learn more on C++ and OpenGL. Ever since I was eleven I've always said that even I could make a better game than what SEGA was making at the time (Remember I was eleven I didn't know crap on game designing). This will help me accomplish my dream and I thank the team that is making this.

#18 User is offline steveswede 

Posted 17 April 2012 - 09:24 PM

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View PostGuess Who, on 17 April 2012 - 08:23 PM, said:

breakable ice to demonstrate physics, etc.

This should be a key feature. While the core effort at first should be things like physics, stuff like this needs to be put in to take the engine beyond the expectations. Also the stage could do with another theme like a ice cap city that has a mechanical theme opposite to ice being a natural theme. This can pave way for platforms moving in and out of an area instead of just moving around in a 2D space and even have spikes going in and out of the background so you have different ways to avoid obstacles.

#19 User is offline ashthedragon 

Posted 18 April 2012 - 12:00 AM

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Make some 8 bit sonic levels in 3D. I would die for an HD, 3D Sky high Zone. and they are not overused!

#20 User is offline Caniad Bach 

Posted 18 April 2012 - 12:04 PM

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I think the functional aspects of the level should take precedence, rather than the aesthetic. There's very little point making it look really pretty and fancy when the main purpose is to show what the engine can do. Surely a simple test level like in BlitzSonic would suffice for now, and resources can be put aside to make an actual level afterwards.

#21 User is offline Covarr 

Posted 18 April 2012 - 09:16 PM

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View PostCaniad Bach, on 18 April 2012 - 12:04 PM, said:

I think the functional aspects of the level should take precedence, rather than the aesthetic. There's very little point making it look really pretty and fancy when the main purpose is to show what the engine can do. Surely a simple test level like in BlitzSonic would suffice for now, and resources can be put aside to make an actual level afterwards.

Except "what the engine can do" includes any graphical effects. This isn't based on an established graphics engine the way SonicGDK is, so people aren't gonna know what it's visually capable of unless the demo shows it.

My thought is that the demo should have a good variety of enemies, each with a unique behavior, to help show off whatever scripting engine ends up being used. Even just a few would go a long way.

#22 User is offline Kharen 

Posted 20 April 2012 - 06:58 PM

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In my opinion, I think that the simplest way to showcase what the engine can do would be to have a four-level demo. One level would be a side-scrolling, Classic-Sonic area. Because people are the most demanding about the physics being as absolutely close as possible to the original Genesis games, the easiest way to show them off would be to remake a level from the Genesis games. Personally, I would suggest something such as Angel Island zone, or Mushroom Hill Zone. Being as they're the first level to their respective games, it would be easiest to have one window open for an emulator of the original game, and one window open for the tech-demo game, so a side-by-side comparison would be incredibly easy to do. Also, seeing as these levels have the most elaborate artwork for intro levels, seeing their reinterpretations in 3D polygons would do very good to show off the graphical capabilities.

The second level for the demo would showcase a Sonic Adventure-style level. This would show off the engine's capabilities for a free-roaming type level. An original level, rather than a remake, would be best since the physics aren't going to be such an issue. (I may be wrong in that regard, though) I'm not very worried about the setting for the level, but it would probably be best to design it to show off as much that can be done as possible without relying on pre-scripted events.

Third level would be a Modern-Sonic, racetrack-style level just like Unleashed or Generations. Again, it would mainly be to showcase the engine's capabilities for such a level, and would do best as an original level instead of a remake.

Finally, the fourth level would be a boss fight, to show how the engine can handle large enemy bosses rather than just designing typical enemies like would be in the normal levels. Personally, I think the coolest idea for a boss fight in a 3D engine such as this would be to do a re-imagining of the final (non-Super Sonic) boss from Sonic & Knuckles. It could be a 2D battle for the first phase where you attack the hands, and then transition to a 3D battle for the second phase where it's chasing Sonic while firing flames and energy blasts from the Master Emerald.

Basically, I think that four levels like this would be the best way to show off all the possible design choices that your typical Sonic fangame-designer would want to make. It would show off being able to do just about all the typical things seen in Sonic games to date, and could have the occasional unusual trick (Starlight Carnival-style gravity, for example) to show that the scripting engine would be robust enough to do anything that's not immediately available out-of-the-box.

#23 User is offline Azu 

Posted 22 April 2012 - 09:56 AM

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I would use simple models though. That is unless you'll find someone model all those levels.

#24 User is offline Candescence 

Posted 22 April 2012 - 11:28 AM

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Either that, or make some heightmaps for terrain, and assemble the rest of the level content with models as "building blocks", like, well, most games these days.

#25 User is offline Andrew75 

Posted 23 April 2012 - 05:08 AM

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I have a 3D Green Hill Zone sitting around over here...
there are about 150 level chunks so that custom layouts can be produced.
This post has been edited by Andrew75: 23 April 2012 - 05:12 AM

#26 User is offline Twilightzoney 

Posted 23 April 2012 - 07:31 PM

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I'd like to see you tackle both physics styes of classic and modern for peoples choice preferences, and then have the 3d and 2.5 splines for guiding paths and such for the world.

Having it targeted at what Unreal Engine requires is more then sufficient. Doesn't mean the demo should show off the graphical power, all that material goodies can wait till you get the physics and what not down for the basic groundwork.

The level should show off physics and slopes, have a few destroyable objects that sonic can push around. So breaking boxes or something would be neat to show. And show off a 2.5d loop, and a 3d loop that is scripted by paths. That would be good to show for a demo.

Something akin to GDK test level, just have a water section to show running on water and water physics.

Something like that would be good enough, no need to get all fancy with graphical things. Have a few homing attack chains to show off how Modern can go about moving, and chain of enemies for showing how high you can bounce with classic.

Again, it doesn't have to be something huge, and glorified, a simple tech demo will be sufficient to show the progress of it. I would like to see it just gray style checker-block.

#27 User is offline winterhell 

Posted 24 April 2012 - 12:51 AM

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The 3D loops doesn't necessarily have to be a scripted cutscene. They can work like the loops in a 2.5D section, just that the camera is going to be at a different angle. Before you enter the loop and after you exit it the controls can continue to be 3D. But while in the loop you can only move forward and backwards.

#28 User is offline Gen 

Posted 25 April 2012 - 10:16 PM

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Regarding how loops function:

A basic versatile means of having Sonic running across any surface in the game would be to make it dependent on Sonic's speed, and the world space normal of the surface.

If Sonic isn't moving at, say, 90MPH, then we'll say Sonic can't successfully move through a loop, where you'll have a section of the loop that'll have a surface normal Y value of -1.0 (facing down). This should generally work well enough, provided that we can account for certain edge cases (I.e., what happens when an object's surface normal splits at an edge).

#29 User is offline Candescence 

Posted 26 April 2012 - 02:13 PM

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Yeah, you shouldn't need to script loops, that's just silly. If you have a proper physics engine, you shouldn't need to resort to cop-outs that Sonic Team uses (or used to use, at any rate). I also personally prefer to have the camera behind Sonic as he goes through the loop, much more exhilarating.

A single tech demo area can certainly work, but I think rather than having a bland/generic testing area like GDK, we should have an open outdoors environment to also demonstrate the graphical capabilities of the engine as well. This particular video comes to mind:

And it's not that complex to make, you just need some terrain (make it big), and then populate it with objects, rings, enemies, etc.
This post has been edited by Candescence: 27 April 2012 - 01:54 AM

#30 User is offline Aerosol 

Posted 26 April 2012 - 07:40 PM

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I just want to take a second to point out that running through a loop without scripting is entirely possible in Generations, before the Sonic Team bashing gets out of hand.

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