Archive for December, 2006

Wednesday, December 13th, 2006

G’day all.

Here’s the deal…

  • You asked for it. At last there are Sound Effects!
  • Also it is all converted for XNA v1.0 that was just released yesterday. No pain at all. Done in 5 minutes.

Go grab the new (& coolest) release from the Latest Builds page here.

My first cut at sound, but I’m actually pretty stoked about how it’s turned out. The crazy perfectionist in me will continue to refine the sounds of course.

I hope you like it. It’s almost feeling like a real game to me (although I have so much more left to do.)

Now remember, your comments, ideas & feedback are always welcome.

Average Rating: 4.4 out of 5 based on 275 user reviews.

Friday, December 8th, 2006

Hi there.

With 3 altered lines of code I’ve made the Fireball & Explosion effects look a whole lot better.  The difference between the two effects was really too similar.  They’re more distinct now, and I’m much happier with them.

Get the new release from the Latest Builds page here


Average Rating: 4.7 out of 5 based on 287 user reviews.

Friday, December 8th, 2006

Shawn Hargreaves seems to be blogging with a vengeance today.  Possibly going for some kind of record.  ;)

Anyway, among other things, he alerts us to another XNA Team member’s blog:  Eli’s Cornflower Blue blog opens with part 1 of an article explaining Alpha Blending, how it works, and it’s relationship to the Depth Buffer.

I’ve only skim read it so far, but it looks like some very good info.  Exactly what the doctor ordered actually, because when I was converting from XNA Beta 1 to 2 I had all sorts of problems with weird Alpha Blending symptoms.  All fixed now, but I never really understood the problem.

I’m looking forward to studying this one ASAP.

Average Rating: 4.5 out of 5 based on 179 user reviews.

Thursday, December 7th, 2006

Howdy all.

I’ve released another new build of the game.  You can get it from the Latest Builds page. 


What’s new?

  • You asked for it – EXPLOSIONS, fireballs, whatever you want to call it.
  • Skywriting feature partly complete. Use the XBOX 360 Controller’s B button. For Keyboard users use the Caps Lock key.
  • Left Control is now Shoots. Works nicely with the Left Shift for throttle.

Average Rating: 4.6 out of 5 based on 162 user reviews.

Wednesday, December 6th, 2006

was bored…

So I got bored of completing the “skywriting” (for my kids) feature mentioned earlier.  Bit of a tangent really.  It’s kind of there.  Call me lazy - call me bad daddy, but dedicating a new game mode + menu to it just wasn’t thrilling enough for me right now. (besides, the kids somehow broke one of my 360 controllers, and my son chewed the thumbstick on the remaining working one. grrrrrrr)  Also the fancy new “3D” rendered menu I was working on was a bit more difficult than I’d hoped. ”Skywriting” will still be in the next release, but remains blended with the rest of the gameplay.  Just a differen’t button press to pump out the coloured smoke – if you feel so inclined.


now excited…

Now, what I am enjoying is adding EXPLOSION/Fireball effects!!!!  That will be in the next release in some form or other.

I started off doing a particle system for an explosion, and what eventuated was an awesome effect of the plane engulfed in flames.  I’m extremely happy with it, so if that isn’t motivation then I don’t know what is.

Think I might use the effect shortly before an explosion.  Right now I’m thinking the explosion will be the same effect, but tweaked for more impact, maybe some spinning shrappnel (to replace the plane model)

Might post a screenshot soonish – stay tuned folks.


p.s.  oh, and it’s official, unfortunately Santa isn’t going to be bringing me an XBOX 360 for Christmas this year.  Which means ”Air Legends” will stay PC only for a bit longer than I’d hoped.   :(

Average Rating: 5 out of 5 based on 242 user reviews.

Friday, December 1st, 2006

Yes, I’m still here.

The relative silence is because lately I’ve been far too busy at both work & play.

I’d like to say the “play” has all been XNA, but I’ve been enjoying Battlefield 2142 a bit too much for that.

What I have done is add the “skywriting” feature (my 6 year old daughters idea) to my “Air Legends” game. Basically the plane puffs out red smoke trails while you press a particular button, so you can do lovely pacifist pictures in the sky. ;)

A very easy feature to do with some tweaks to my existing smoke particle system.  So a nice quick win on the progress front. 

It’s certainly not a historically accurate feature, but that’s why it’ll be presented like a seperate game mode with no enemy aircraft. (actually it should probably be a different themed game altogether).  Anyway, doing the menu for it is taking longer than the feature itself. Go figure.

XNA news

It’s December at last.  So not long to go now for the Full release of XNA.  December 12th, I believe.

David “LetsKillDave” Weller posts some exciting news that the migration of code built on XNA Beta 2 to the Full release, should be relatively painless.

Those of you that are fearing the RTM version of XNA will result in the same kind of pain as the Beta 1 to Beta 2 transition, take heart.  There are VERY few API changes this time around.  All the “beta 2″ code that I’ve tested so far has worked without needing code modification (or very minor modification).  Those of you that have invested time in writing Beta 2 games or tutorials will most likely find your code works perfectly.

He also introduces us to another great XNA resource. Michael Anderson’s blog is putting out some very cool info with source code included. 

Check out “Manders vs. Machine“.  Definately one to follow.

Average Rating: 4.8 out of 5 based on 152 user reviews.