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Brawler

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Story and backgroundEdit

Brawler is the kind of game where the player assumes a hero. A hero with great powers developed thought martial arts and other practices that he learned in an ancient settlement where he lived with his fellow monk companions. The character , DaHui, will engage in different missions to discover a mysterious alliance between a sect of monks, thieves and mercenaries. Brawler is inspired in Morrowind, Jedi Academy and Dragon Ball.

The idea for Brawler came from different fantasy stories. I like very much ancient Chinese culture so i decided to make a story on my own that mix fantasy and chines ancient culture. To know more about Brawler visit http://cloudslikecastels.6x.to

Because I have been working alone in this project, i have no schedule. Passing thought learning steps and refining the techniques, Brawler Chapter One took one year for development. I used Blender version 2.37a and only logic bricks, no python. Hopefully it wont take you so much time making your first big project. So let us see behind Brawler’s backstage.


PowersEdit

When using powers in the game the main problem i found was that the powers came from the centre of the mesh (in Brawler’s case from the centre of the 1st view camera) and not from the hands of the character. I solved that by moving the vertices from the object.

The other way is to parent an empty to the hand bone (I think it is not possible in 2.37a) or parent the empty to the character’s mesh so that it will be in the hands position when the shooting action is done.


AuraEdit

In the game there are two different types of auras. The defensive ones only modify some internal attributes, like having more health or melee strikes are better.. it was done modifying the materials reflection.

The offensive auras are similar to energy balls that are projected. But in this case the motion is very small and is in the global z axis.


Camera viewsEdit

The 3rd view cameras are set up, using logic bricks. For the first person camera i simply parented it to the characters mesh.


Health and Chi barEdit

The Health and Chi bars are a little orthodox. The bars are parented to the 1st view camera and turn invisible if other views are selected. But if you select, for instance the 1st person view (keyboard 1) and then the 3rd without letting key 1 to be pressed, then you will also have the bars visible. Each of the three points of each bar are dependent to a numeric interval, in the logic brick. When the interval is reached a point is destroyed until the player’s character die.


Armature settingEdit

To make a humanoid character i used a mesh (3D modelled object) and armatures, so he could walk and do other actions depending the animation that the armature was set, in the logic bricks.

  • First make your humanoid mesh. Best way i think is starting from a cube and beginning to extrude (select the object and hit TAB; select the vertices and hit E).
  • Make the humanoid so that you have it with arms, legs and head stretched out like a 5-pointed star.
  • Now make an armature that resembles the structure of bones that the humanoid would have. More than 20bones is too much and will slow down the scene.
  • When you’re done with it select the humanoid and the armature (mesh has pink color and armature has a slightly brighter pink color). Hit CONTROL+P; select armature; select create from closest bones.
  • Now the most important part is that the armature is set with actor ghost and the mesh will have all the physics. Otherwise the character will have strange behaviour. Select the mesh and enable actor- dynamic (fig.5). Important is that damp and rotdamp are set to 1.00. The gravity pull is instead simulated in the logic bricks (always _ and _ motion -0.2 at z axis) For the players character i used damp 0.4 and rotdamp 0.1.
  • If you want to add more humanoids from the same duplicate them (mesh+armature) hitting ALT+D.
  • If you move the character make sure you clear parent (hit ALT+P; select clear and keep transformation). Then parent it again. Otherwise the mesh will have strange behaviour, at least on 2.37a.


OptimizingEdit

Blender can be very tricky on this, but using the right ingredients, you can make a very complete scene without dropping frames per second!

Face collisionsEdit

First of all, if you intent to add rich scenery that don't need collision, make sure you make the following:

  • Select the tree or whatever
  • Hit F
  • Hit W
  • With all faces selected, hit the second collision option.

You wont believe how much objects you can add this way to the scene!! This is probably the best way i found to save frames per second. Use it on landscapes that are only there for visuals and that have no active interaction. For instance, i used this technique on trees, but left one face with collision, so that DaHui is still able to climb the tree. I used it also on the powers, all but one face has no collision. Still works and you save frames!

Distance clippingEdit

Well this say it all. The less distance you have the better frames per second you have.

  • Select the camera
  • Hit F9
  • Modify ClipEnd
  • Make sure you also use fog. The fog distance should be less than the ClipEnd. Don’t make the fog distance starting at 0 cause that way everything that has transparent textures will be shown as white faces. Make it instead start at perhaps 80.

TextureEdit

Don’t use 5000x2000 sized textures, or similar, unless you have really great RAM memory. When running the game it will be very slow at the beginning, but generally after that it may run ok.

VerticesEdit

I used between 8000 to 18000 vertices in each areas, depending the amount of armatures. More than that will make the scene run slow.


ConclusionEdit

Well.. and that is all relating technical stuff and main things i learned using a fantastic little software called Blender. Hope that this makes you have appetite for making your own game or whatever that makes you express your creativity and art. Peace!

Gabriel Gonçalves aka gg7

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