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Old 03-14-2011, 11:07 AM   #1
senor-cojones
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Default Third Person Game Level - MSc Dissertation Game And Survey

Hey guys,

I hope this is allowed here, as this is my first real post- so hopefully I'm posting in the right forum and this is all above board, if not please move/etc as I don't wish to annoy anyone. At the end of this project I'd be looking to have it hosted as an article, so I am taking this quite seriously, trying to scientifically analyse ever and covering all bases.

Basically I've been working for what seems an age now on my MSc Dissertation in which I've made a huge document and I've took a stab at making a small game level in order to use it as a testbed.

So far I've been working on a 3D Game environment with custom gameplay and HUD elements (basically making a simple full game) and it's nearing completion as can be seen in my video;

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u-kAP0MT2FU

In order to complete the making of the game I need to test it upon volunteers, who would need to download my game and then fill out a short survey for my dissertation, and that would be an amazingly great help to me.


My game is available here: http://dl.dropbox.com/u/20422466/DE-.../DE-WoodsA.rar

My survey is available here: http://www.kwiksurveys.com/online-su...HEOKM_3dfa209e



The game is about 182mb in size and the survey has about 30 questions, but most are multiple choice so it should only take about 5-10mins to complete in total. If you could download my game, fill in the survey and pass around to anyone at all that would be such a great help to me (especially looking for novice game players, but anyone that fills this in would be amazing).

The game runs mostly at a solid 60fps on my PC which is Win7 64bit, Q6600 stock and ATI HD5700, so my pc isn't great and it runs fine, and it also runs ok enough for me to record it, so hopefully it runs fine for everyone else, but if not just PM me and I'll sort something out.

If you do have any trouble running it then please try closing any unused apps like firefox/chrome/etc and also run at a lower resolution (in the settings menu try 800x600 or 640x480) and this should help in giving more frames per second. Also if anyone is experiencing a D3DCOMPILER_.dll error when installing or going to run the game then that means the DirectX needs to be updated for some reason. The solution is to download and install the latest update which is located here; http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/e...a-9b6652cd92a3

Regarding what I'll do with the survey- well firstly I'll be using the results to most of the questions to gain an insight for my Masters dissertation- I'm trying to make it have a scientific analysis with a high level of accuracy, and secondly I'll be using the general opinion to help improve the level to make it have more gameplay and be fun to play in general, so I welcome any suggestions as I know it needs fleshing out and improving.

Last thing... all art, features, concepts etc are mine except for the following;
Trendy Entertainment- for use of the horde code/enemy models/AI.
Michael Allar- for use of the Forecourse UI.
Epic Games- for use of the character/weapon models and making a great engine.

So yeah that's it for now. If you could play my game and fill in my survey I would be eternally grateful.

Thanks guys
Aaron
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Old 03-25-2011, 11:48 AM   #2
senor-cojones
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Thanks guys, especially to everyone that replied to my survey I've now got over 60 replies, so that's good for me to start analysis on the results and to draw conclusions from with a reasonable margin of error/confidence level. Many thanks! I hope to work toward having this as accurate and relevant as possibly so it can be hosted as an article.

So... that's the documentation bit out of the way for now... so now I'm thinking about improving the art/gameplay experience of what I already have. I've made some renders of my current assets;

Pine 02:


Foliage:


Rocks:



and there's a fair few more on my Flickr at Aaron's Flickr

Regarding the above assets- I realise that they aren't all 100% finished and there's a lot of tris that could be cut (on the foliage/rocks), but it's just to show what I have so far

I'm interested in any suggestions/etc that anyone has to improve. So far I've been suggested things like;

-Include controls/etc for new players
-Display a goal/objective to make the gameplay clearer
-Flesh out the scene with more assets
-Damage the cabins/use mesh painting on them
-Mesh paint the rocks/cliffs to make them interesting and varied.

If anyone has any more suggestion/advice that would be great, I'd love to hear them so I can make this piece better.

Cheers guys
Aaron
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Old 05-03-2011, 02:38 PM   #3
senor-cojones
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Thought I'd post my final update on this project. It's been a long slog to the end!

Basically regarding the 3D artefact I took in a lot of the feedback I've been given and implemented a fair amount of the ideas to make everything a bit more streamlined and less buggy. So I managed to;

-Added a quick tutorial system (thanks to research)
-Added a killbox under the floor to stop enemies from slipping through it (it still happens but not as much now, couldn't find the actual reason for it!)
-Removed support for keys that aren't used (so no pressing F and falling through the floor)
-Tweaked the sky slightly (less/bigger stars, slightly editted clouds)
-Fixed the rain particle system (Now it rains properly, regardless of fps)
-Tweaked the post processing (slight sharpen/etc)
-Tweaked rain material effect
-Added a moon and tweaked ambient lighting somewhat
-Made the water look better (with real time reflections)

Among other fixes.

Overall it doesn't look or feel too much different from the initial game but it does play with a lot less bugs!

Looks wise....







I've attempted to capture the rain particle effect in the images but it was pretty difficult, so it's not particularly noticeable! It looks more effective in motion...

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WOQPxF74ZNk

So if you were curious to check out what the pretty much final build looks like then its here; http://dl.dropbox.com/u/20422466/DE-.../DE-WoodsA.rar

All work is my own except, thanks go to:

Trendy Entertainment- for use of the horde code/enemy models/AI.
Research- for use of the Interaction System.
Michael Allar- for use of the Forecourse UI.
Epic Games- for use of the character/weapon models/engine.



Regarding the documentation- I spent most of my time working on it and getting it ready for print. In the end it came to 185 pages (although I had a lot of appendices!), so a massive thanks to everyone that filled in my surveys and tested my game scenario for me. I found out that time can be manipulated to affect a players perception of a game (i.e. time flew, game was fun) but I also presented a whole load of new angles/questions regarding the subject. I managed to have it all printed and bound, so I have a nice looking thesis to go with the game level...

If anyone is curious about the results/wants to look at the thesis further then please just PM me and I'll look at uploading it for people to see.

Anyways cheers for all the help with this guys.... I can't wait to work on new (better!) projects and start getting to grips with getting some proper Tech on my portfolio
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