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Author Topic: Ask the developer a question!  (Read 328319 times)

Kaseke

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Re: Ask the developer a question!
« Reply #15 on: February 13, 2010, 04:44:33 AM »

Heh. I'm aiming to be a flash developer, and would love to join CraigSterns "team" after some practise. Long way to go tho  ;)
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KZ

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Re: Ask the developer a question!
« Reply #16 on: February 13, 2010, 07:30:45 AM »

Thanks for the answers, CraigStern. I've been loosely following development of newgrounds since 2004, so have been fortunate enough to observe the changes that took place during teh time and read Tom Fulp's article you're referring to- quite interesting to see how things started off.
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Zhampir

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Re: Ask the developer a question!
« Reply #17 on: February 13, 2010, 09:30:58 PM »

Heh. I'm aiming to be a flash developer, and would love to join CraigSterns "team" after some practise. Long way to go tho  ;)
Same here, though I've never programmed in Flash, I'm a quick study. Once I feel confident in my abilities with Flash expect to see an application from me. ^^
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Kaseke

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Re: Ask the developer a question!
« Reply #18 on: February 14, 2010, 02:40:33 AM »

I'm still working with my "escape the room"-game, which is not going very good right now... It's becoming too big. Should propably change some of the videos used in it to movieclips.
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algebra15

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Re: Ask the developer a question!
« Reply #19 on: February 21, 2010, 04:11:19 PM »

I'm making a strategy game, top-down like TSoG, but the characters' motion isn't limited to a grid. I'm hoping to make an onRollOver / RollOut function that makes an info box with dynamic text about the character's status appear, but the text boxes don't respond to their variables when inside a movie clip, aren't moveable when they aren't, and I can't do an onEnterFrame function with a button, apparently. Should I give up the immediate, up-to-date info of the onEnterFrame function and use a button, inside which dynamic text responds to its variable, or is there another way to make this portable HUD?
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CraigStern

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Re: Ask the developer a question!
« Reply #20 on: February 21, 2010, 09:39:27 PM »

the text boxes don't respond to their variables when inside a movie clip

Make sure the "variable" property of your dynamic text field is pointing to the correct level. For example, in AS2, if you have the onEnterFrame function running on the main timeline keeping track of a variable called currentHealth, an embedded text field could point to currentHealth by having _root.currentHealth as its variable property.
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algebra15

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Re: Ask the developer a question!
« Reply #21 on: February 22, 2010, 10:22:21 AM »

Thanks a ton; that really helps.
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Zhampir

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Re: Ask the developer a question!
« Reply #22 on: February 26, 2010, 05:29:46 PM »

I read on the old forums that weaknesses weren't supported by the current game engine, and I thought, why not? I'm guessing the resistance set-up is probably quite simple, like dividing the enemy damage by 2. So, couldn't you simply have a new type of "resistance" say, -Heat, -Cold, -Physical, -Light, -Shadow, as opposed to normal Heat, Cold, Physical, Light, Shadow, and make it multiply the damage by 2? I still haven't gone into flash coding much, but all it would need extra is simply making the .5 into a variable with an if then preceding it checking if the first character is a - or not (I forget the line that does that, midseg or something) The - sign could even come after the name such as Heat- depending on how you check for which resistance is appropiate.


So, what I'm saying is, couldn't that be a simple way to create a weakness?
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CraigStern

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Re: Ask the developer a question!
« Reply #23 on: February 26, 2010, 06:06:10 PM »

If it's just a question of multiplying the associated damage by a set amount if a creature resists the opposite element, you're right--that wouldn't be too hard to code.

The biggest reason I can think of not to do this is that it would require a fair bit of rebalancing. (One example comes immediately to mind: Luca in the spirit cellar mission. Her physical resistance would cause her to take double damage from just about every enemy in the mission, since they all use Mental attacks--this would make her much less useful.)

On the other hand, this might make combat that much more strategic and challenging. And I suppose I could limit the "weakness" effect to the four primary elements (Heat, Cold, Light, Shadow). If you like, feel free to create a thread in TSoG Wish List where folks can discuss this idea, and I'll consider adding it in.
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Zero Mission

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Re: Ask the developer a question!
« Reply #24 on: February 27, 2010, 06:18:13 AM »

Hi, I'm playing through chapter 2 right now, and I do have a ton of questions!  I don't know where to begin, so I'll just ask you the first thing on my mind:

Tell me about your decision to use Flash.  I don't know anything about Flash myself, but I've been learning C#, so I do know some things about programming.  Are there advantages to using Flash for this type of game, or did you just happen to be familiar with Flash, so it was an obvious choice?

Also, I'm curious about the decision to have the game run in a browser.  Believe it or not, this is the first time I've ever played a game in a browser!  So I'm wondering if there are advantages to doing it this way, as opposed to just having a download-able installation?  Also, did this decision have anything to do with using Flash?
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CraigStern

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Re: Ask the developer a question!
« Reply #25 on: February 27, 2010, 10:19:56 AM »

To be honest, I didn't really know about the huge range of alternatives when I first started--I got started with Flash mostly because I knew someone who used it and liked it a lot, and that convinced me to give it a try.

The reason the first few games are browser games is partly because that's what Flash was originally designed to produce: animations in-browser. So it's very easy to embed a Flash game inside a webpage. I wasn't even entirely sure that a Flash game would work as a standalone executable until I experimented with TRPG2 Special CD Edition.

It's also easier to distribute Flash in-browser from a business standpoint: there are tons of Flash games portals with lots of traffic that will pay you money for your work. ("Easier," however, doesn't necessarily translate to "better long-term business plan," which is why I'm going the pay-to-download route now.)
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Zero Mission

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Re: Ask the developer a question!
« Reply #26 on: February 27, 2010, 12:40:07 PM »

Since I really know nothing about Flash...  When you're working on a game in Flash, are you mostly writing code, as with most other languages, or do you have like a drag & drop editor or something?

Since Flash works so naturally in a browser, would you say it's pretty much the ONLY viable medium for developing a browser game?  You mentioned that there are portals full of Flash games...  So I'm guessing that a browser game written with something else might not be easily distributable?

I was really surprised when I started playing the first two chapters of TRPG, and they were running right in Firefox.  I had never expected to play an RPG that way.  It always seemed that Flash games are usually just tentative, brief distractions, which is why I never really paid them much mind.  But when I was playing your games, it was kind of like, "Why not?  As long as you can save your progress, what's the difference?"... I guess there isn't really any disadvantage, is there?  Or maybe from a marketing standpoint there is?  Like, you mentioned about deciding between pay-to-download versus letting a commercial site host your games.  I'm guessing that you couldn't directly "sell" a browser game to players, as you could with an executable...?
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CraigStern

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Re: Ask the developer a question!
« Reply #27 on: February 27, 2010, 02:58:31 PM »

There are platforms other than Flash that support in-browser games, but most of them kinda stink. One exception I can think of is Unity. While Unity is awesome, however, it doesn't have anywhere near the install base that Flash does. That means that most players will have to download a plug-in and restart their browsers before they can play your Unity game, which will cause a lot of them to say "Ah, forget it."

The biggest advantage to making a Flash game as a downloadable executable is performance. Flash runs way faster when it's not embedded in a browser. (Don't ask me why, but it's true.)

Also, it gives you much more flexibility to make large game files. If I include all the music and art and sound effects I need for TSoG, for instance, it's going to weigh in at well over 100 MB. No one is ever going to wait for a game that huge to load in-browser every time they want to play. It'll be better to make it a file that you download one time and then can execute at will.

I'm guessing that you couldn't directly "sell" a browser game to players, as you could with an executable...?

In fact, you could--that's what indie developer Farbs has been doing with Captain Forever.
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Zero Mission

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Re: Ask the developer a question!
« Reply #28 on: February 27, 2010, 04:28:10 PM »

Speaking of performance, I did notice a lot of slowdown with TRPG2, and ultimately settled on using the lowest graphics setting, just to squeeze the best performance out of it.  Even in the card game.  It didn't seem that it was graphics intensive, so maybe that's a caveat of running it in a browser.

One thing I'm dying to ask you about is how you got started...  When you were first making TRPG1, did you intend from the start to develop a game for release?  Was it originally released through one of those Flash game portals, for commission?  It's a short game, but I'm thinking that it's a fine length for a game on a portal site...  Also, how much time did you spend learning to work with Flash before getting started on the game?
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CraigStern

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Re: Ask the developer a question!
« Reply #29 on: February 27, 2010, 06:07:01 PM »

Heh. I learned to use Flash by making Telepath RPG Chapter 1. (Which, in retrospect, was probably the wrong way to go about it.) I intended to release TRPG1 as a finished game from the beginning, which is in large part why it's so short.

I originally released TRPG1 on Newgrounds as an entry for an Armor Games competition. (It won $250.)
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