Our Continuing Mission…

It is now highly apparent that there is no chance of me finishing this project by the end of this month. It was an impressively unrealistic goal in the first place. Oh well. It did its intended job: To light a fire under me and make me get to work on it.

And I’m still working. I don’t really have any pretty screenshots of anything new, but I’ve just finished planning some extensions to the gameplay (a totally different method of doing the collision detection that’ll be faster, as well as different track cross-sections, like driving inside of a tube). Then I’ll start beefing up the actual graphics engine proper. It’ll be nice to get some actual environments around those tracks!

Modeling will go as follows:

  1. Use track editor to create track
  2. Export completed track to a mesh format
  3. Load mesh into standard 3D Modeling program
  4. Create background
  5. Save/export to some format that I can read in
  6. Replace the temp materials assigned in the modeling program with the actual in-game materials
  7. Run it through the lightmap-generating radiosity dealy
  8. Save as level format
  9. Profit!

Or something like that.

Sound complicated? It is! But it’s easier than me coding my own 3D modeller. I tried that once, it didn’t work out so well.

Anyway, the AI is coming along…slowly. I’ve stopped developing it until after the collision detection rewrite.

Anyway, I guess the release date has changed a bit. It’s now “When It’s Done.” Except I plan on that not becoming the Duke Nukem Forever version of “When It’s Done.”

This is still the most progress I’ve made on a game in my spare-time programming efforts. Ever. I’m happy with it!

Get Your Kicks On Loop 66

Finally! It took longer than expected (I had some issues with the collision detection), but I finally have the driving code working. That means, I can finally drive around these crazy tracks. As expected, because the tracks that I have were created before I even knew how the cars would handle or anything, not all of the turns/curves/loops are as forgiving as I’d like.

Some screenshots (note that the car is not actually going to be a sphere, but I needed something quick to represent the car):

Click to enlarge

Because the car is eventually going to be hovering, the driving control doesn’t have to be as accurate to real life as it would if the car had wheels. So I added some dampening to the sideways motion (Essentially lateral friction to keep the car from moving sideways, unless it’s skidding), but didn’t have to do a full-on friction model. Plus, the car has a force-field (or whatever they will call those things in the future), so the walls actually bounce the car more like a pinball bumper than in a realistic fashion (the force field applies some bounce force).

Anyway, now that I have the cars driving, it’s time for the next huge step: Driver AI.

Note that I have absolutely no idea at all how to write an AI to drive around my loopy sorts of courses. Time to do some research!