Week 10 Remote Raiders Postmortem

Now the project, senior show are all completed. I have been thinking and review the senior project process and found out things that could be improved. I would like to share with you about what we did right and what we did wrong through out this 9 months project from my personal perspective.

What went right:

This project left a lot of great memory of working as a team. It simulates the professional teamwork pipeline.

We were able to follow the general guidelines and complete the project in a timely fashion.

Each of the member actually care about the project.

What went wrong:

The biggest mistake is that we allowed the CS team took the dominant position in the co-production. In the ideal situation, DIGM team should’ve made the decision and design the game. In this case, CS team could’ve act as a position of problem solver. They should’ve provide the function that we needed instead of we provided the art assets that they asked. DIGM team should have acted as the designer of the game mechanic and have the CS team to fulfill our technical requirement. However, the reality was the opposite. CS team decided what they could make so they put DIGM part of the team in their cage and eventually developed what they could make instead of what we wanted to make.

The second biggest mistake was that we went on 2D game. All of the DIGM member were good at 3D art but only one of them were in the position of 3D generalist. In our 4 years of education in GMAP program, we were especially focused on 3D game development. There was no acceptable reason for us to make a unprofessional 2D game for senior project, which was the most important project EVER in this program. Building a 2D game was not only ugly, but also a waste of our talent and resource. I have complained this 2D/3D issue in the past and the final product did not convince me at all. People were supporting 2D game except Ziyang and myself. Building a 2D game might be more comfortable for the CS team on coding and data transmission, so CS team was fully voting for it. Also Jordie had better 2D art skill when Resh and Patrick were fine with either way. Therefore, the team went on this weird 2D+fake 3D game. Compare with Mirrors of Grimody and The Knowledge we seek, 3D games are always more beautiful then 2D game. (EXCEPT we got super talented 2D artists who could make art like Ori and the Blind Forest or even Limbo)

The third biggest mistake was we did not start earlier enough do pre-production. Although the team was formed in the summer, but we did not have a full member meeting nor a solid concept until late August. There were a lot of cooler/more brilliant concept were ditched. I remember Resh made a spaceship game prototype was really awesome and it was the biggest shame that we did not push that concept. Zach got a prototype of a semi-music game. Either of them should be our senior project game. If we used them as our senior project, I believe we had a better starting point at fall quarter. Especially if we chose Resh’s  spaceship game, we could have a better chance of even winning the GDC conference.  I basically made up my mind to joined the team because of Resh’s prototype. I had all of the cool sci-fi designs and ideas that there was no way to present in Remote Raiders. I felt cheated. (lol)

Fancier Fish Week 10 Project Update (11/16 TO 11/29)

Group Meetings:

  • DIGM development meeting   (2 hrs)
  • Advisor Meeting (2 hrs)
  • CS development meeting  (2 hrs)
  • EGS/Production Schedule meeting (2 hrs)
  • Presentation Practice (2 hrs)

Production Work:

  • Website Development (5 hrs)
  • Environment visual development (10 hrs)
  • Environment Implementation (12 hrs)
  • GUI Development and Creation (9 hrs)
  • Player Sprite Production (6 hrs)
  • Presentation Work ( 7 hrs)
  • CS development (16 hrs)

Positive:

  • Worked a lot on our presentation and practiced it for the end of term
  • Pat completed the Textures and they are in the game
  • GUI work was done by JD and Jimmie
  • Resh tirelessly fixed our colliders each time they broke
  • We have a stable game to demo for Tuesday
  • First music iteration was given out to the team by Cat
  • Overall in a good place to move forward from

Negative:

  • GUI will still need to be worked on
  • Thanksgiving meant not as much gone done as could have gotten done with everyone spread out
  • Rendering took JD far too long

Total Hours for the week: 75 hrs

Resh Week 10 Project Production Journal

 

 

Thanksgiving happened. So let’s recap the last two weeks:

Lighting was settled for good, I managed to figure out why our colliders kept breaking (and they should finally be fixed “for good”. We started concept work on a new set of map tiles, basically building a system so we can make maps quickly and efficiently.

 

new example map

 

Breakdown:

Lighting  Optimization – 2 hours

Fixing Colliders – 10 hours (2 hours, but done four times)

Presentation Redesign – 2 hours

Designed a little explosion particle effect – 2 hours

EGS Sprint retrospective (Basically final presentation light) – 4 hours

Meetings – 9 hours

 

Total: 29 hours

 

Jordie PPJ Week 10

Was thanksgiving week so I didn’t get as much done as I wanted, still worked as much as I should have.

Hours Breakdown:

Meetings:

• Week 9? “Wagner” Meeting (1 hr) – practiced presentation for class

•Week 9? digm Meeting (1.5 hrs)

•Week 9? Full team meeting (1.5 hrs) – Discussed music and what we wanted done in the vertical slice for the end of term

•Week 10 “Wagner” Meeting (1.5 hrs) – No wagner but we grabbed tony to practice our EGS presentation which was good practice going into our presentation for the end of the term

• EGS Presentation (1 hr)

Work:

•Minor textures updates (1 hr)

• Website Bio Updates, Web Updates, and Team Icons (5 hrs)

• Resizing sprites for Performance Tests (.5 hrs)

• Branding Guide (1 hr)

•HD Logo Rough for Presentation (1 hr)

•Sprite Skin tests and more Sprite Base Editing (7 hrs)

•Starting Press Kit for Game (.5 hrs)

Total hours for the Two Weeks: 23.5 hrs

Positive:

-Fixed Issue with sprites and 3D messing; got nice feedback from EGS, learned about press kits which is what I was stumbling to put together before I knew what it was- got criteria in general and examples, so I can start putting together our “about our game page” now that I know what I’m doing

-Worked more on our website, The Team page is done!!! and gave out the URL. Got positive feedback on how we displayed the information, will probably make the page a bit more streamline down the road but it’s 100% functional and not completely ugly.

-Got the VERY basic idea of how long it takes to do skins… somewhere between 5-7 hours per side. Which translates to, I’ll need a week for each skin. Sadly. Hopefully I’ll figure out something to streamline it more.

Negative:

-Didn’t get the skins done that I wanted, despite that being my goal for our vertical slice. There’s still hope before the end of term but not in time for the presentation. : (

Artwork I’ve Made:

Current Branding Guide:

Branding Guide

Icons:

Basic Front Skin:

archelogist fitted to rig

Skin in Action (on the old animation LOL):

Archelogist_Fullbody_Test

Tags:

Art, Design, team fancierfish, Jordie, meetings, animation

Thanksgiving Week

We have 2 weeks to cover for this PPJ

Hours Breakdown:

Week 9:

  • Meeting with wagner (1h)
    We discussed the 2d in 3d problem with him and Found out what we were doing was working better than expected.
  • Wednesday meeting (1hr).
    We discussed a menu system with the group and decided to go with a flipping signboard. I was told that i need to finish the textures for the secondaries.
  • Friday meeting. (1.5 hrs)
    We discussed sound with our new sound designer and game systems.

Week 10:

  • Textures for Secondaries (6h)
    This took quite a bit of time because of how many pieces there were that needed Unique textures.
  • Updated Presentation (1.5h)
    Our Presentation needed to be restructured so I worked on that.
  • Writing this PPJ (0.5 hr)

Total hours:  11.5hr

Positive: Glad textures are done for this iteration and enjoyed turkey.

Negative: Thanksgiving put most of the group into a turkey coma. Especially me and I wasn’t overly available when I was at home.

Thanks Giving! Week 10 PPJ

This production journal is going to include 2 weeks ( week 9&10) of progress. Because of Thanks Giving holiday, a lot of us are taking a break. However, I still got things done at the meantime.

Hours Breakdown:

Week 9:

  • We had weekly meeting with Prof. Wagner on Monday(1 hr). I addressed my concern during the meeting. Wagner actually think we can push 2D+3D further and make our game stylish. He gave us the example of Second Life to proof his point of view. This brilliant plan of solution regained my confidence of our project.
  • We had our weekly DIGM meeting on Wednesday (1hr). During the meeting, we came us the concept of title screen and waiting screen. It will be a flip board shows all of the information. Also, I need to refine the sprite for the in-game treasure box.
  • Then, I got sick on Thursday, so I couldn’t attend Friday meeting.
  • I refined the treasure box sprite. (2 hrs)
  • I made mock up for the all of the information on the flip board. (waiting, start server, join game, game over) (3hrs)
  • CS team requested a game app logo, so I made one. (1hr)

Week 10:

  • Although Prof. Wagner was sick, we still gathered on Monday. (1hr) we play tested our game and did a run through of our presentation.
  • We had a presentation in EGS, since we are one of their incubator team, a report is needed every quarter. (1hr)
  • Ziyang and I decided to replace the flip board menu idea by a four-sided-spinning Mayan totem. He modeled it but he had problem of doing the UV layout in Maya, so I took the job. I UVed and textured it. (2hrs) Then I textured our Mayan Temple model as well. This temple will be the back ground of the spinning totem. (1hr)
  • Writing this PPJ (0.5 hr)

Total hours:  13.5hr

Positive: It’s good that we had a solution for 2D+3D issue. No more concerns.

Negative: We still need to communicate with the group about how to technically put in totem title menu in game.

 

Ziyang`s Week 10 PPJ

Breakdown: Before Thanksgiving week, I was assigned to work on main_title animation in phone screen with Jimmie. Our layout of animation is spin the sign to another side when finger sliding on it.  Since my group encouraged me to use imagination to create things. I inspired from menu of game “Monument”, to create our main menu. I modeled the temple, the sign and the tree, and move them to Jimmie to texture it, then back to me to animate it and rendering.

 

Hours:

Working on animation and modeling: 8h

Waiting for rendering: 7h (just in case, saying it.)

Total: 8h

 

Positive: the final render looks great, I wish our group will love it.

Negative: the render time takes way longer than I expected. Should start it early next time.

Two rendering image: