Saturday, March 23, 2013

Release Checklist Time

Tomorrow is the yearly release day. I had hopes to come with a fully functional revamp of the "school zone, level 1" as initially drawn by Pierrick and Piet (aka Cyborg Jeff), but that's not yet possible. You still have the latest gameplay demo to try (3rd evolution since Christmas), I you really want to. That's still significant progress achieved since last year's first appearance of a compound Gob in the game engine.

I toyed with the idea of doing a quick-shot of SeaFox on DS, using the sprites I drew 4 years ago (whoaw. that old 0_0), which would now be somehow a piece of cake with the directional tiles I used for Inkjet and the objects generators that I used for berrybats. But I lacked time for that as well.

On the other hand, all the tools have been upgraded since the Neocompo, with the addition of multiple palettes, and so was the game engine. That's not as impressive as introducing the animation editor, but that's still a significant step.
In SEDS, you have a set of radio buttons telling "cmap slot" just above the raster tool. touching one letter picks that palette for edition, and L-touching it will copy the current data onto another slot. Clicking "okay/sure" activate one slot for the sprite editor. That's pretty much all you can say.
  • [todo] enable some sort of "sheet preview" for all the sheets on top screen, and identify the currently selected sheet(s)
  • [done] L+touch on the '>>' and '<<' buttons navigate to the "next page in the same set as the right (edit) page".
  • [wish] 16x32 and 32x16 edition (even with 32x32 grid)
  • [done] provide a button on screen for launching "cursor" mode, just in case R trigger is not as reliable as it should.
  • [done] provide a "Load" and "Save" button on the file screen that do not depend on L/R triggers.
  • [done] auto-compaction of the tileset as you move pages across types of ram
  • [done] two-way navigation in ram types with L+touch. 

In the animation editor, there's two places where you can use alternate palette. When you describe a "limb" for an animation, you can use the "cmap slot" radio buttons on the "FILE" screen to define its default colour (before L-touching the limb table on the left).

Alternatively, you may need to change the palette slot of a "limb" during the animation, for instance to introduce some progressive shading effect. This is achieved by touching one of the "cmapslot" in the bottom-right corner of the EDIT screen.

See this post for identified bugs and things that needs improvement.
  • [done] provide a "Load" and "Save" button on the file screen that do not depend on L/R triggers. 
  • [done] allow more than 48 animations.
  • [todo] dim the sprite when enabling "box" mode (as suggested here), report the current size
  • [todo] allow the box to be moved without getting resized.
  • [wish] more convenient way to encode limbs default priorities (i.e. grid vs. list)
  • [todo] show both *load slot* and *save slot*.
  • [done] export animations into .gif files 

Changing the color of tiles in LEDS is likely the most hack-ish of the three. You will need to ensure that your tiles are on the background layer, then press L+SELECT to switch to properties edition. From there, press the dpad to the LEFT direction once to hide the tile properties, and then press it again so that it says "colors on" on the top screen. you may then use (A) and (B) button to change the current cmap slot and paint objects with the stylus in the currently selected slot.

[done] make sure monsters are properly rendered on screen
[done] allow cloning of .cmd files and update of which map they use.
[done] feedback on file selection.
[todo] feedback on color selection; e.g. change palette for the upper screen and fade foreground objects.
[todo] make tile flipping simpler in draw mode (e.g. reaffect X or Y button).
[think] enable 'book' of sketched objects to be read/written to (may require A/Y for DRAW/COPY mode to be re-thought too).
[done] display non-functional (missing state) GOBs and allow selection.
[todo] report GOBs' cast
[todo] clear/set GOB init expression, set cast.
[need] in 8x8 mode, move the cursor by 8 pixels, not 16.
[done] allow monsters linking.

Hope you'll enjoy it.

No comments: