Game Design, Programming and running a one-man games business…

Kudos 2 gameplay video

It’s tough to convey a game like this in video. It’s all about the numbers and the stats and the text, so videos always seem a bit of an anti-climax. At least my videos shows you what the GAME looks like, as opposed to the FMV.
I just saw a trailer for the latest total war game. I have a love hate relationship with them, but love the historical setting for the new one. The thing is, the video is 90% FMV, which only illustrates how crap their engine is by comparison. I’m sure a lot of people don’t realise how much is FMV, or subconsciously our brains blur the line. That’s why they show hot chicks in beer ads. We all know the hot chicks don’t come with the beer, but our animal brains make the connection and equate it to beer == shagging hot chicks.
It’s sad really. Although I know this sort of thing works well, I don’t think I’d stoop to it.
Anyway, here’s a new video. The game should be out in 2 days.

Adding some basic mod support

People really liked modding Kudos. Maybe it was because that game was (like all of mine) amazingly easy to mod. Adding a new job is just a text file. Adding new books and other purchasable assets is similarly easy. I intend kudos 2 to be just as easy (if not easier) to mod for.
But right no I’m concentrating on finding and squashing any bugs. I’ve just spent some time today getting modded jobs to work (still needs testing), but it won’t be the perfect easy user-friendly experience I intend it to become on it’s initial release.
Hopefully, I’ll eventually have some separate tools to produce new jobs and scripts for the game, but I’d rather worry about that in the week after release, and the weeks after I get back from the hugely needed holiday I have booked for the end of October.
So if you buy the game (expected release date is Wednesday) and you think it doesn’t allow enough modding, don’t worry, that will change almost immediately.

Widescreen support, publisher logo things

Three things got done in the last 24 hours.
Firstly I got wide-screen support in the game, which kicks in automatically if your desktop resolution is 1280×768 or 1280×800. It then runs the game full screen as 1280 x768. In a window, it is always at 1024×768. This was basically a move to support wide-screen laptops, which are very commonly used for the more casual and indie games now. The game looked a bit crap when stretched to fit those resolutions, so I did 5 minutes fiddling and it all works fine. I’m really pleased with how easy it was to get this working, a sign that the underlying code is good :D

The second thing, which I did today was add support for those tedious logos at the start of the game. Don’t worry, that aren’t in the Positech sell-direct version, but some of the casual game portals insist on having their logo present. The main game screen looks so cool I don’t ant to clutter it, so I decided to support the full screen fade in and out thing you normally get. Not an inspiring job…

The best thing was rewriting the background display code so when it changes from normal rendering to super-funky ‘you are drunk’ wobbly buildings, there is no really bad jump (it still skips a bit), and a lack of clever color-fading. Now it’s all one system, which makes everything look a lot nicer. This was just a bit of graphical polish I wanted to get done.

It’s going well, and I’m on track to put the game up for sale on October 1st.

Kudos 2 Character Creation screen

A first look at customising the avatar for Kudos 2. This is just me going through some of the options. Once you select your avatar and play a game with them, they get saved out as a preset that the game will sometimes preselect for you later.