Positives: Even though it looks like a light week from an hours standpoint, we as a team made some really important leaps forward that I’m glad to have been a part of. Early in the week, we determined that the murder board we had been working on seemed mostly like an extraneous holdover from our original idea that didn’t feel integrated with our current direction, so we made the decision to table that mechanic for now. Sydney ran me through the updated puzzle chain she and Joe developed (I was somewhat awake for this, having come from a string band rehearsal in NJ). I sat down with Angus from the sound team to discuss getting new brass lines for the prototype (and then subsequently implemented them). I brought Sydney’s new room model and Samara’s door puzzle into the main scene. I led a brief team meeting on Sunday evening to discuss progress and upcoming deliverables. Sydney and I workshopped the lines we needed from our source material for our promotional video, and I took care of equipment checkout and space reservation requests (thanks Professor Lloyd!) for our Tuesday morning film time.
Oh, and I had my hands in the code. My primary focus this week was revamping the piano cylinder puzzle interactions, as they were reallllly broken at their last iteration. While they’re still a little bit janky, I’m happy to say that the interactions work a lot better now, and, most importantly, while unfinished, and consistent – that is, things that are supposed to be connected no longer disconnect if you move them too fast/turn in the wrong direction/think about a wombat for more than 8.2 seconds.
Negatives: The piano cylinder interactions are still not where I want them to be, and a lot of that’s due to poor time management on my part. Fortunately, that’s my only task over the break, and there’s an Oculus at my house in New Hampshire for me to work on.
Positives: This week we met with Dr. Mushcio and I worked on the head of the countess character. The Idea is to work piecemeal on the characters so that we will definitely have everything taken care of by the time true dev time happens. It was interesting to properly get back into modeling. This being said I think that it will be good looking forward to get to the modeling of all the other characters and parts.
Negatives: While things went well, it wasn’t as much as I would have wanted to get done. much like last week I have been spending my time making sure I have my other classes taken care of so that I can focus more time on SPROJ. Next week I will have some of my other classes out of the way.
Looking Ahead: Finish concept art for remaining two characters and work on the countess’ chest piece.
Because we decided to table the murder board concept I was able to work through two of our major bugs this week.
The database bug I was worried about turned out not to be too bad of a fix, it just entailed a lot of trial and error. Now, the database works in a build, so we’ll be able to test all functionality from a build instead of directly from Unity. We also discovered that the walls bounce a couple times before ending up at the intended wall when moving – but that was an even easier fix.
Finally, I started working on our accusation mechanic. Since we tabled the murder board concept we decided to move to a conversation-based accusation. If it is past a certain point in the game then the player will now have the option to accuse any NPC when initially starting conversation with them. This will branch into a logically separate branch from the original dialogue logic, where it will go through found and not found evidence. Finally, if the player decides to accuse the NPC at the end of it all, the game will reach an end state.
Unfortunately, I had to do a lot of preparatory work involving pulling apart the NPC script before I could really start working on the accusation-specific logic. I ended up separating the script into the base NPC script, a DatabaseHandler, and a ConversationUI. Once that was done I added an Accusation script and two more tables to the database.
I ran into a lot of issues with testing this so it is currently not functional, although all the base logic is there – it just needs more debugging. Luckily, this task was slated to span two weeks, so I’ve gotten a majority of the work done for it this week and should definitely be able to finish it up next week, hopefully with some more sample audio.
I wasn’t able to get the accusation mechanic as finished as I’d like it to be moving into next week. The bulk of the work is done but it is still currently not functional. Hopefully it’ll be easy to debug and it’ll also be working as intended, but I feel like that might be a bit too optimistic.
Positives: Created a progression for puzzles with Sydney that gets us through the next several weeks of production, as well as creates a blueprint that we can frame the story and character dialogue around. I then arranged these puzzles into a thing in illustrator. Did some 2d Menu Mockups, as well, to be brought into VR next week.
Negatives: Much of my week was dedicated to a 4 day long swim meet, so working was difficult as I was spending most of my time in the water or at the pool. My tasks were kept light this week to reflect this. Furthermore, I will not have a huge amount of time with Thanksgiving break and travel, so the week we get back will require a lot of catch-up.
Bringing Game Menus into Unity
Recording Team Commercial
Meeting with Stefan Rank! Still pending schedules. Will probably move to next term.
Positives: This week was all about modeling some small puzzle assets for our programmers to be able to use. Initially I made the piano receiver a separate object from the piano, but realized that I could save on polys if I just made it part of the actual piano we already had. I also made some small basic cartridges that will look really spicy once we texture them. I wrote a small script for our video draft to record Tuesday (19th) and had a puzzle planning session with Joe. My closet now is covered in sticky notes of puzzle flow. Once all that was done I had some time to model an arm chair for the main room and a display case for our archive room to be used later.
Negatives: I probably could have started more models this week, but other classwork got in the way. Luckily we’re getting our video filmed before everyone leaves for break, so I’ll have all of Thanksgiving to edit it. Break also means less work gets done for the week but I think I can make up for it next week.