SkyHawks Update 3-5-2013

I’m trying something new. As a way to track my progress,  I am going to start tracking my progress via weekly posts on this blog. I’ve been working on  SkyHawks for a few years now. the game is progressing well. A series of side projects have delayed the game a little. I’m jumping back on the project full time. Here’s what I’ve been up to this past week.

Schedule/Task Sheet

Keeping track of tasks has been a major hurdle. I don’t think that indies spend as much time on project management. When I finally had time to work on the game, I’d often lose track of where I left off. This led to a lot of wasted time. Often, I’d write ‘to do’ lists, but I’d spend more time looking for the paper I had written it down on. Both ways were less than efficient. This past week I started using Google Docs. Now I use a simple spreadsheet  Completed tasks are green, in progress tasks are in yellow. This simple document has helped me a ton. So What did I actually complete?

Writing everything in one place really helps keep you on track. (At least for me)

Helicopter Enemy

I completely redid the Helicopter enemy. An artist friend of mine did an excellent job modeling and texturing it. I was finally able to make the rotor spin. Previously, the object was one static piece. This just didn’t feel right. I’m glad that I spent the time to get that animation going. It’s a simple rotate object script, and the rotor is a child of the helicopter object. Two Muzzles shoot ‘dumb’ rockets, and the helicopter turns to face the  player before firing.

Texturing the Railgun Boss

My design document calls for a railgun boss for one of the stages. I modeled it years ago, but I have yet to actually texture it. I do enjoy looking at art, the process of creating the content takes me a while. It starts to not be fun, and I procrastinate. I’m breaking myself out of that habit but just jumping back into art. It’s a process, but I’m hopeful I will get faster. (If anyone has any suggestions on modeling tutorials, I’m listening) I hope to have it fully textured by next week. The next step is the set up in Unity 3d.

Sky Environment:

I finished working on a new environment. The Sky environment is a lot simpler than the city one. I want Sky Hawks to be a pretty game, complete with complex backdrops. The challenge is making sure that the backdrops don’t overpower the action. In the future, my levels will feature less buildings, but I will still go for a higher level of detail than most SHMUPs. I still need to do some work on the tiling, but the sky is starting to look like what I had in my mind.

 

BTW. I’m starting to experiment with particles, I’m still not quite happy with it.

What’s next? I’d like to create a new build of the game. I got some nice feedback via Kongregate, so expect an update there soon.

 

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