Thursday, November 10, 2011

The end is Nigh

What my game is: It is not a finished game, rather it is the exploration of a game mechanic.

What I ended up with

I ended up with a simulations of a game, that needs to be played with multiplayer over a network, however this part was not implemented.

What I did end up with however is as follows: The game is a fast paced game that involves three different types of insects. These insects will capture resources(neutral insects) and attempt to conquer other insects, who when conquered respawn as one of there own. The game mechanic I explored focuses around larger groups of flocks dealing more damage to smaller groups of flocks.

One of the beautiful aspects of this is that if a losing insect can ambush the opposing flocks respawn point, they can quickly capture the opposition flocks unguarded supply lines. As a result flocks have to protect there vulnerable supply lines if they do not wish to give away insects. Another aspect of the game aids the weaker insects coming back, which is if the insect flock falls below 25, it automatically generates new insects one by one. So it is up to the groups of insects to avoid the larger flocks to have a fighting chance later on.

To win the game, an insect group must be the first to 150 insects.

What else would I implement?

The first thing to implement would be the multiplayer. If I implemented this it would allow me to make the game much better as I could test and balance it with users.

I could then work on game graphics and a game interface.

Other ideas I did not implement

  • Obstacles
  • Different abilities for each flock
  • each flock having a queen
  • different characteristics depending on insect

In reflection to my process:

I feel that I would have benefited from drawing up a week by week schedule for the development of the game. What I found was when rob went away, I lost motivation because I had no goals. As a result most of the development was done in the last two weeks.

If I were to do this project again, I would start coding earlier and playing, and would be more structured with a plan.


My goal in starting this project, was to explore Craig Reynolds flocking algorithm and its potential as a core for a game mechanic. My second objective, was to further increase my understanding of programming. Before coming into this assignment, my programming skills were considerably less advanced then they are now. However towards the end, I found my self whipping out code I would have feared a year ago. I feel that I have successfully found a way to adapt the flocking algorithm into an interesting game mechanic, and allthough by no means is my game finished, it does explore the possibilities of the game mechanic quite well. 

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Progress Report

I have rewritten all my collision detection to make it more efficient. Now I am working on my game mechanics. Basically at the moment if two subclasses of boids collide, if one dies its location  gets replaced by the class that killed it. However this is giving me issues in that the larger flock does not win. I thought of three solutions:
  • Make larger flocks deal more damage.
  • Make new flocks not be able to deal damage for say 5 seconds
  • Spawn converted flocks in a different location.
I am going with the third option, the reasoning is I believe this will add an interesting game mechanic of defending your supply flock coming in as well solve the collision detection problem easily. I am also planning on flocks gaining new flock if they  are undamaged for a certain amount of time, I think it would be a good idea to have these flocks added to the respawn point as it will further enforce this mechanic.

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

One Week To Go

I spent most of yesterday working on collision and converting flocks. Today I am working out what I am going to work on for the rest of the week and have in the game.

This is a list of some of the ideas and things left to do:
  • gathering neuts 
  • boids generate when away
  • larger get slower
  • different class speeds 
  • interface/gamestuff,
  • win conditions
  • death pits(possibly laided bown by a subclass?)
  • Obstacles
  • Make larger flocks stronger then smaller

Saturday, August 20, 2011


I spent today so far fiddling with the boid code and research.

I found these links which have been helpful:

Thursday, August 18, 2011

BrainStorming Concepts

Game Concept
Birds of Pray

Avoid the flock of birds by blocking them.
Flock Wars
Two flocks controlled by either player contest for food. Player directs flock with pheromones. Combat?
Wolves controlled by player, attempting to chase sheep into a cage. Motivated by wc3. Possilble to add a sheep player, where he can control a lead sheep where sheep follow.
 Levels of difficulty depend on terrain.

Colony Wars
Colonys of insects try to control all the flocking insects.


Tuesday, August 2, 2011

More on simulation

Angry birds is an interesting example of a successful simulation game. At its core it is simply nothing more then a knock stuff down game based on a basic physics engine. But when its given a successful story line it creates something more meaningful and profitable. What this means to game design is there needs to be a combination of good physics but with meaning, or it would not be enjoyable.