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ChromaWaves

29 Jul

ChromaWaves is now out on the Apple App Store!

“ChromaWaves is an ambient color mixing game for the iPhone and iPod Touch.”
-Description on the App Store



This was a great project that I am proud to have been a part of.  It’s difficult to understand the necessity of teamwork in the video game industry until you participate in a project like this, even as small as it was.  13 various artists, programmers, and musicians put their heads together in the Game Design Seminar, a class shared by the Cleveland Institute of Art and Case Western Reserve University, in the fall of ’09.  As a testament to our perseverance and dedication, we continued work on the game after the class ended, working well into the spring semester of 2010, which happened to be the final semester in college for many of us.

And on July 27, 2010, all that work finally paid off.  Well, not literally, for us anyhow.  As the description says, “All profits that iGameTeam would otherwise earn from ChromaWaves sales will be donated to Child’s Play, a charitable game industry organization, ‘dedicated to improving the lives of children with toys and games in our network of over 60 hospitals worldwide.'” So donate 99 cents and receive a complimentary game!

Players shoot colored bullets at abstract, colorful enemies by flicking a water droplet through a ring of pigment.

Check out the website, hosted and designed by fellow CIA Game Design Alumnus Andrew Kuhar, who also wrote and produced a series of podcasts that might give you an inside listen into the trials and triumphs of our project.  I highly recommend part 2, where you can get to know the crazy guys that taught us everything we know about game design (and a lot of other stuff that shouldn’t be repeated in a family-friendly environment).

Also, CIA’s website has a news report about the team, if you’re curious about the rest of the guys (and gal) that helped develop ChromaWaves.  For many of us, it is the first published game that we have had a hand in creating.

Congratulations, iGameTeam! Continue reading

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The Escape Route Leads to Another Maze

28 Jun

This post ended up being a bit more personal than intended, but I hope it sheds some light on a topic that many people have questions about: “What happens when I graduate?” -Cory


I’ve recently begun to survey my situation after four years worth of ashes and debris has mostly settled.  I’ve graduated from college, exited the paradigm of life as a student.  I will never again pay gratuitous amounts of money (that I don’t have) to be bombarded with information and expectations.  Instead, I will be paid to get bombarded with information and expectations.  So far, so good.

When life as I knew it ended, I felt unprepared.  I had demolished my website after a lengthy period of neglect.  My resume was out-of-date.  My BFA Thesis was not in a format that would carry over easily after the installation was torn down.  I still have as-yet-unfulfilled promises hanging about in regards to hosting my BFA as open-source code on my defunct website.  And ChromaWaves, the most publicly recognized game that I’ve had a part in, is still unpublished because of a bug that none of the members of the art team have the tools to fix.

But things are not what they seem.

Continue reading

Generating the NAV File

9 Apr

UPDATE 04/2010 by cr0ybot:  Abandon all hope, ye who enter here!

<warning>

This “tutorial” was written back in April of ’09, before Left4Dead’s SourceSDK update became publicly available in June ’09! Yes, that’s right, the first Left4Dead. Now, Valve has Left4Dead Authoring tools, and probably lots of documentation at the developer wiki. Therefore, everything I wrote here, trying to get a mod to work without official support, is probably wrong.

Proceed with caution.

</warning>

Pre-NAV-generation checklist:

Starting Saferoom:

  • info_player_start
  • 4 info_survivor_position
  • info_director
  • env_fog_controller (Fog Enable = yes)
  • info_landmark
  • prop_door_rotating_checkpoint (“checkpoint_exit”; body = 1; Spawn Position = Closed)
  • 4 weapon_first_aid_kit_spawn
  • weapon_smg_spawn
  • weapon_pumpshotgun_spawn
  • weapon_ammo_spawn

Rescue Closets:

  • 3 info_survivor_rescue
  • prop_door_rotating

Ending Saferoom:

  • prop_door_rotating_checkpoint (“checkpoint_entrance”; body = 0; Spawn Position = Open)
  • info_landmark
  • trigger_changelevel (must touch floor)

In-game NAV Generation:

NOTE: If your map has an “event” that opens a crucial path, open the path in-game before you generate the NAV

sv_cheats 1
nav_edit 1
nav_mark_walkable (mark all levels, including rooftops)
nav_generate

After inevitable errors, check crucial NAV markers:

select_with_attribute CHECKPOINT
select_with_attribute RESCUE_CLOSET
select_with_attribute ESCAPE_ROUTE

Manually assign NAV markers by pointing at NAVS or using nav_gui to select:

mark CHECKPOINT (start and end room)
mark PLAYER_START
mark RESCUE_CLOSET
mark ESCAPE_ROUTE
nav_save
nav_analyze

If you suspect disconnected NAVs, especially with stairs/ladders:

NOTE: using the flood select option in the nav_gui will allow you to easily find disconnected NAVs

General disconnections:

nav_trouble_report orphan
nav_delete
OR
nav_mark (1st NAV)
nav_connect (2nd NAV)
nav_mark (2st NAV)
nav_connect (1nd NAV)
nav_save
nav_analyze

Ladders:

nav_mark (at base of ladder)
nav_connect (on ladder)
nav_mark (on ladder)
nav_connect (at top of ladder)
nav_save
nav_analyze

Stairs:

nav_mark (top or bottom)
nav_splice (other side)

If all else fails:

director_debug 1
nav_trouble_report
nav_recompile_flow (untested)

Helping the NAV along:

mark OBSCURED (areas that zombies should spawn, like behind props)
mark EMPTY (areas that should be clear always; mobs will still spawn during panic events)
mark NO_MOBS (areas that will not spawn mobs)
mark BATTLEFIELD (apparently good for spawning zombies in wide-open areas)
mark PRECISE (AI should be careful to walk exactly where the NAV is located; good for tight ledges with a chance of falling)