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December 7th, 2016

05:29 am - Work Post
2:53am - Lots of drama on the call tonight, but things got settled. It's a shame the surprise got spoiled but I'm a lot more excited for Christmas this year.

I finally managed to get out when things were settling down and everyone was getting along again. I have a lot of research and practice to do before Ludum Dare!

Last night I did a build action on the Viking Village and took a look at it in actual gameplay. It's pretty nice.

Tonight I'm going to start by watching some videos on animation in Unity since I still want to understand that before I get on with my mini platformer.

3:48am - I wached a 45 minute lesson on animation in Unity. It was pretty interesting, though I'm not sure it covered anything I didn't know. There's another video lesson on humanoid model animation which is an hour and a half long, I think it should cover what I want to learn about "Ethan" and other characters I might use in Unity.

4:14am - I read some of the Unity Manual.


One of the women sitting in the small area around me just put on some sort of fragrant lotion. My nose is bugging out. ;.;

Okay I'm back now.

I was saying, I read some of the Unity Manual on Animation and that helped out.

4:30am - Suddenly realized one of the two women across from me changed her pants. o.o;;

Also, I'm thinking I'll try making that simple platformer now.

4:43am - I'm questioning whether I should use the Standard Assets Prototyping Prefabs or not. They have a nice texture and material that I think I'll use, but their 2x2x2 cube is 1x1x1 scale. Plus it's made so that the bottom is above the zero plane, or in other words, if I put one at 0,0,0 its center won't be at 0,0,0, it'll be a meter above it!

I'm thinking I should use basic Unity Cubes and some Ramps I'll make myself to make my terrain. Maybe some truncated pyramids, whatever they're called... Frustums?

5:24am - Well I've been here a couple hours now. That's not terribly long, but I'm feeling a bit burned out already. I made a ramp but putting the material from the Standard Assets on it didn't work as I expected it to.

I think my next task will be either making some simple assets myself in Blender, or finding some basic assets online.

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December 6th, 2016

06:17 am - Work Post
3:52am - Oh, hello! I forgot to start my Work Post for a bit. I've been at the McDonalds a while, just watching and reading some Unity Tutorials. I checked out the ones on lights, and now I'm going to look at the ones on Animation. We'll see how much of this I can actually understand, I've never worked with 3D Animation before.

4:24am - There's a very animated, loud woman across from me at the McDonalds, talking with someone who could be her son. What are they doing here at this hour? She's talking very loudly, I don't know if he's even responding. Oh wait there he goes. I wasn't paying them much attention until I started writing this, but it's hard. ^.^;;

I watched some vids on animation. I didn't know you could do animation directly in Unity. Apparently it's pretty good for animation actually. One vid I watched said that while there are better animation programs than Unity, even free ones, you'll have to do some animation in Unity if you're using Unity, because Unity can animate a lot more things than just models, and other reasons too.

I'm thinking that after I do Ludum Dare this weekend, I'll try to make my own animated 3D character and see how well I can do as a first time amateur. <3

4:31am - Arg she's getting louder. It sounds like she's going through some shit, or went through some shit. I hate it when I'm stuck eavesdropping. :/

Well that's it. No more quiet work music. I'm switching to Initial D. EUROBEAT!

4:54am - Blarg. The loud woman and her maybe son are really getting to me. I keep hearing snippets of what they're saying and it's crazy stuff. :/

I'm having a hard time concentrating on the videos I'm watching.

4:58am - Nope! I can't concentrate at all right now. I'm going to do something else for a little while. Hopefully this pair will decide to leave before much longer.

5:23am - They finally left, but not without worrying me. Just after they seemed to go, the woman came back and spoke to me directly. I took my headphones out to find out she was asking for the time... and then the day, and the day of the month. Weird.

Anyways back to work I guess.

5:51am - I watched some more videos but I'm hitting information overload. Most of what I'm watching is slipping out of my brain like water off a duck's back. I still barely understand how Unity animations work, except from an external sense. I mean, I know how 3D animation works, but that doesn't translate into the ability to animate in Unity.

I think I'm going to switch gears and look at some of the assets I downloaded last night.

5:58am - The Courtyard scene is pretty messed up for me. I can't help but wonder if it imported wrong or something. Everything is magenta. ^.^;;

6:13am - I'm building the Viking Village example, but the loud woman is back and louder than before. I think she said she was stuck out of her home, so I guess she's squatting here in the mean time. ;.;

6:16am - The Viking Village looks great when built.

But for now, the loud woman is scaring me off. I've gotta go home.

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December 4th, 2016

10:01 pm - Work Post
8:00pm - Well I'm at the cafe tonight. I was going to go to the McDonalds but it was starting to precipitate and it was uncomfortably cold, so I decided this was far enough.

Last time I messed around with some of the new Standard Assets. I'm basically going to do the same thing today; I want to look at some of the scripts and see how they work.

After that I'm going to make a simple 3d platformer using these basic resources, a little collectathon thing. Grab all the whatzits and you win!

I'll then try and export it to different clients and see what I get. Hopefully I'll have all that done before the weekend, when Ludum Dare is supposed to happen.

8:11pm - Heh, I just had to turn off some music because it was too awesome and was distracting. Very nostalgic too.

9:18pm - Lots of fun going over these scripts. They're well documented and surprisingly simple, except for the parts I don't know about.

I think I'm going to have to watch the tutorial videos for lights and animation. ^.^

That said, I do have Ethan running around like I like, and jumping too. The camera follows him and avoids terrain. It's pretty good. I shouldn't have any problems throwing some obstacles and collectables in there and making a prototype game. <3

10:00pm - Ack! It's ten suddenly! I have to go home.

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December 3rd, 2016

10:41 pm - Work Post
9:21pm - How in the hell is it already 9:21? I swear I left the apartment only a little bit ago, but apparently it was an hour ago, and I haven't even finished my McMeal yet.

Yesterday I uninstalled the old Unity and installed the new Unity 5.5 along with a bunch of extras I didn't install last time, including the demo project. I did this since I figured I'd want to crib some things from the demo project, and I was right. There's some useful stuff in there. I should be able to put together a simple 3D platformer without too much fuss.

9:36pm - Time is flying. I need to get to work. First things first, gotta open Unity and make a new project.

9:38pm - Hmm, there's options to add asset packages in the create a project dialog. I'll add a bunch and see what I get.

9:40pm - Oh geez, McDonalds has blocked FurAffinity! Not that I should be looking at FA at McDonalds anyways but it sucks all the same.

Also it's taking a while for Unity to make my project. Is it installing assets I had on file or downloading them from the internets?

9:47pm - Well there's a lot of toys installed in a Standard Assets folder. I think they're the same as the standard assets package that can be downloaded from the Asset Store. I'm gonna mess around with them.

This reminds me of the early days of Second Life, except in this case I need to make my own ground... Well, to be fair, I made my own ground in SL too, floating platforms!

10:23pm - I've found lots of interesting things, in particular a blob shadow projector which should be pretty useful later. Still going through all the things, but time is running short. It's already 10:23. :/

10:38pm - Well I've been here a little over an hour and I haven't done much actual game development, but I managed to make a floor, a staircase, and the fully animated character Ethan, and put a premade camera on him. It looks good so far. I'll mess around with it more later I guess. I want to be home by 11pm and I've only got 20 minutes. Alas, tonight is a short night.

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December 2nd, 2016

08:09 pm - More Ideas
I keep chomping at the bit for a Space Game but every time I look at Atomic Rockets it just takes all the fun out of it. I could probably make a cool game set on a space station but a non-linear exploration-based space game just won't work with realistic physics.

So I'm thinking of setting a game on Polyglot Station, the space habitat I concieved for a story I want/wanted to write. It's a station built to accomodate the widest variety of forms in the solar system. I guess you could think of it like Zootopia, but perhaps less extreme? People of all shapes and sizes living together.

I could make it as an adventure game, a 3D action adventure, an RPG...

I dunno if that's what I want to do though.

While I was out I remembered I had also been thinking about making something like Monster Hunter. That's a big challenge but Unity would do a lot of the heavy lifting.

I could also make a Zelda like game. Either a 2D one or a 3D one, or even a 2.5D one if I wanted.

So I've got lots of options. I think for the time being I'm going to mess around with some free assets from the Unity Asset Store and see if I can make something fun like a 3D platformer.

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04:44 pm - What to do Next?
So I didn't say it in my last Work Post since I was still rather 'processing' it intellectually, but after seeing the performance of my 'grass' in the prototype of my a-life simulation, I don't believe I can make a game even close to what I was intending, in Unity or otherwise. In hind sight I was shooting for a more complex simulation than Dwarf Fortress in full 3D with real time physics.

Well, you can't know what you're capable of without testing your boundaries.

I don't want to make a simplified version of the game I was planning to make, so I have to come up with a different project to work on now. Also Ludum Dare is coming up and I'm thinking of competing. We'll see how things go as I work on it all.

For now I've got some ideas of what I might want to make that's more within the realm of possible.

Originally, before I got caught up with the dream of massive a-life simulation, I wanted to make a game where you manage a dungeon. Less like Dungeon Keeper and more like Halaster the Mad and Undermountain. It's a place to keep all your pets and have adventurers meet their doom. It would still entail some a-life simulation but on a much reduced scale. You'd be building spaces for different monster types to live, managing their ecology, and trying to get more and more interesting monsters to live in your dungeon. There would still be 'gardening' and 'ecological simulation' but it would be much more simplified.

Of course, I'm also thinking about making The Space Game again. But like usual I'm already getting bogged down in realism. The biggest problem I have with high speed space travel is that if you can move so fast, what happens if you crash into things? Especially intentionally! It's one of the reasons I think we'll be stuck with slow space irl.

I have considered making a slow space game though. I could make it like one of my favorite games, Sid Meier's Pirates!, where the calendar rolls by as you sail along, so months seem like half a minute.

Unity is practically begging to be used for 3D platformers. And I like me some 3D platformers. I would kind of like to make a game and story about transhumanism and posthumans. Sort of a modern take on Astroboy.

I could swear I had a half dozen ideas coming to me when I was laying in bed this morning. I'll keep thinking about it and see what I come up with.

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06:51 am - Work Post
3:38am - Well I was laying on my bed and it was about 3am and I couldn't stop thinking about working on my game. Lately I can't seem to do much else besides work, play, eat and sleep. There's at least half a dozen other things I should be doing with my life. But for whatever reason I've gotten into this pace of working hard on my ecology game and nothing else. I guess it's that Hyperfocus they talk about in the Asperger's panphlets. I dunno.

Anyways on my way home from the McDonalds last time (I'm at the McDonalds for a second time in the same waking period! So much walking!) I had the bright idea to ask on the Unity Forums and Subreddit about the problems I was having. I've only gotten one reply so far, but it took the problem in such a different direction it... Well it got me out of bed and out to the McDonalds! (Mind you, I've only been up for around 10 hours, so going to sleep now would be silly.)

Basically, I thought I'd have to quantify all the regions to test before doing the test. Their suggestion implied that the area scans could be done first, without the quantification of the space.

More specifically, and also less specifically, their suggestion was to put a ball on a string and spin it around my plant, checking for possible locations as it goes. I could do that, or I could even do it similar to the way I was doing it, and use cubes. I'll probably use something similar to their suggestion, but with additional passes, depending on the size of the spawn area relative to the size of the spawn object.

4:14am - Doing some refershers on Quaternions. I still can't believe Euler is pronounced like "Oiler".

4:19am - On further thought and researching terms used, I don't think that swinging on a rope idea is going to work. But it's okay, I can just do spot checks. Hmm... I think I should move back to boxes, actually, but the idea of just doing the checking first remains.

The thing is, doing it as rings of spheres, the spheres might overlap as I do the searches. With the cubes, I can make sure that the cubes cover the whole area. I guess it's back to the midpoint circle algorithm, but this time instead of determining the locations ahead of time, I'll do all the circles one cube out.

5:40am - Okay, I've got it doing one octant of searching, and I tested it, and it looks good. Now I just need to copy the code seven times. Hah.

5:48am - Something went wrong. The concentric rings of cubes are each at a slightly higher altitude, except for two octants which are way high up. I'll have to investigate this. With coffee. BRB, buying coffee.

6:08am - I've fixed it! There are a surprising number of holes in the search area but it should work well enough for my purposes.

6:10am - I did a test to see if it would work if the ground was sloped, and it did! Hooray! <3

Now I'll take out the debug cubes and have it spawn plants.

6:48am - Well it sort of works, now. The plant spawns more plants. But for some reason, setting the reproduction to 0 doesn't stop it from reproducing again on the next frame, and the children it spawns are fully grown.

These are bugs for another day. It's almost seven and I've drank my coffee. I think it's tim to head home. Strange though, the sun isn't up yet. Where are you, Sun? It's almost seven!

Anyways the bigger problem I have is that my carpet of quickly spawning and slightly spinning grass started lagging the simulation to unplayability long before even my meager square of world was covered. I think I may have to simplify my simulation somewhat.

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December 1st, 2016

09:58 pm - Work Post
8:18pm - It's pretty late to be out at the McDonalds. I'll probably be going home late this evening, but we'll see what I do. I got out of bed around 6pm so I didn't have a lot of time today for anything.

The first thing I'll be working on today is the same thing I've 'worked on' the last few times, getting that debug code debugged, so that I can get a picture of the search area.

8:23pm - I just looked at the code and my brain rolled over. Bleh. This is some complicated shit let me tell you.

I'm going to just strip out the debug code and write a new nested loop to draw the whole area of the ring. We'll see how that goes.

8:34pm - Okay I've got my complete drawing. I'm pretty sure it's an accurate drawing, but it's wrong. So, the most likely situation is my code for drawing the initial rings or filling the rings is wrong.

I'm feeling kind of aloof and don't want to think about this problem right now, so I'm going to read a book for a bit and listen to the latest few OCRemix tracks, before trying again.

9:35pm - Music has been listened to and things have been read, and I can't say I've refound my interest in work. Still, I don't have anything better to do.

9:43pm - I made the inner and outer circles bigger and a pattern emerged. What I thought was a misplaced single dot was in fact a misplaced circle. For some reason the inner circle is being drawn in the corner instead of the center.

Ah, here's the problem. I draw the minimum circle first, using the radius of the minimum circle as the center point. It should share its center point with the maximum circle. I'll change that and see what happens.

Ah, but then a variable isn't declared yet. I'll put the whole drawing the outside circle first.

9:50pm - Oh great, now it's accessing out of range and bugging out. I'm not sure why it's doing that, and frankly I'm having a hard time visualizing all of this. I've really messed up the whole thing. I mean, at some point I realized I couldn't test ranges of lists that were set to null, so I had to fill in the whole square ahead of time with data. I set it to 0,0 since I knew that square wouldn't be used by a circle. But that means I'm filling up my multidimensional list with junk data.

What's more I'm locking myself further and further into the problem I've had since the start and only realized (and occasionally forgot about) during development of this part of the code. I'm using floats converted to integers for the indexes. I should be able to assign a distance of 1.5 and have it work, and that won't in this setup.

I think I should comment it all out and start from scratch. But I don't have the energy or passion or spoons or whatever for that. Or the time. It's already almost ten o'clock and I planned on going home at 10:30pm.

I think I should just take what I've learned tonight and spend the rest of the evening thinking about how I could do this differently, and go home now.

So I'll do that.

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November 30th, 2016

08:59 pm - Work Post
8:47pm - Oh, I'm working, I should make an entry. I've been at the McDonalds since around five I guess? I only started working an hour or two ago, I lost track of time because I wasn't making proper recordings in my journal like I should be.

I remodeled the plant in Blender which caused some issues with the SphereCollider on the plant. I was able to fix it though, and I tested to make sure it still works with other sizes of plants.

Now I'm looking at my spawning algorithm again. The debug code I wrote is giving strange results, so I need to debug the debug code.

8:58pm - Alright I only just started recording my log and now I'm going to go home. I have a Pathfinder game to run tonight. ^.^

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November 29th, 2016

11:57 pm - Work Post
10:38pm - I was obsessed enough to keep working after getting home, and it looks like the problem is different from what I thought it was.

The minimum range is 0.4 and the maximum range is 1.0. The range of the lists is based off that. ^.^;;

Wait no, where did I get those numbers? I just checked again and they're 1 and 4.

11:36pm - Anyways I added one to the range so the whole circle would fit and it seems to work now.

11:56pm - Alright I've put in some testing and it's not working properly, and I'm tired of working on it, so I'll do more another day.

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