First Level: Creation of the Big Boss
It has been a frustrating week in developing my Super Space Trooper game as I’ve spent so many hours but seen very little overall progress.
Earlier in the week, I began modeling the big boss 3D mesh in Blender for, what I expect to be, the 1st level. It’s a strange tank-looking hybrid (working title: Epic Battle Tank Boss) that consists of 4 tank tracks, a strange cable-controlled weapons array, and an over-sized hull. The boss is heavily inspired by NASA’s transport crawler.
Up to now, I have modeled it in Blender, UV mapped, textured within Photoshop, scripted the track animations in Unity3D, and set it to activate when the player’s ship enters it’s space.
Complications Along the Way
The first complication was that animations through Blender’s curve modifier won’t port into Unity 3D. So to get around this I scripted the tank’s tracks instead of using an imported animation which wouldn’t work.
The second complication was that I had a terrible time with writing the aforementioned tank track script. The idea seemed so simple, but having very little experience with multi-dimensional arrays I was going a little crazy. Ok very crazy. Nonetheless, the script and animated tank tracks are working now. You can get the source code to do that for your tank from my blog post titled “Unity3D Script to Govern Tank Track Animated Motion“.
With those two “minor” problems out of the way, I completed the 3D boss model in around 8-10 hours, spent about 15 hours or so UV mapping it and the better part of 3 days doing the textures within Photoshop.
What Did I Learn?
This boss has taken far more time than I should be spending on any one boss. I’m expecting 11-12 levels in the game, so at over a week just for each boss, I don’t think I’d make my 1-1.5 year goal for the game. Moving forward I’m going to be sure to keep complicated enemies to a minimum.
I now also have a better grasp on multi-dimensional arrays. While I can work with them, I’d really rather not. To much sleep was lost.
Lastly, I’ve been really struggling with figuring out the best ways to do UVs in Blender. There has been a noticeable improvement for me in that regard this week, so I’m happy to report that I’ve learned quite a bit this week.
Until next week, keep reading my other posts