Hallow[Online]

Development Blog!

Archive for September 2008

Eye Gouging Sounds…

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Today I realized that I needed SOUNDS! I couldn’t make DirectSound work the way I wanted. Not to mention the size of the DirectX SDK (which was greately unappreciated). In the end, I settled for a non-open source sound wrapper. irrKlang is what I settled for. It’s easy to use and free for non-commercial use. It’s pretty sad though. Not all of Hallow[Online] will be open source anymore but I’m able to back up irrKlang. They don’t care if you don’t buy their license until AFTER you’ve made money off your product. Not to mention that the licensing is pretty cheap.

I considered XNA for the development but I’m not fond of making users download the XNA framework on top of the .NET 3.0 framework that I’m forcing upon them. Also other options flickered across my computer screen, I just didn’t like them. irrKlang won, the end.

Also, I’d like to mention, Hallow [Online] WILL come with the irrKlang dependencies, so that people can compile the source from the fresh download.

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Written by FuRom

September 30, 2008 at 11:56 pm

In need of GUI, Character, and Font Artists.

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Today, I started breaking apart the scenes into the 5 scenes and I decided I want to do all the game’s looks and feels as I go along. What I’m looking for is as follows:

Requirements From ALL
All artists must work together to blend their final products together, where they’re needed to put together. The game style that I’m looking for is like kawaii anime with a halloween/midevil feel to it, without emphesizing on a halloween theme. IE: No jack-o-lanterns. I’m quite fond of a vector anime art style with cellshaded-like shading and thin lines for the shading while the outter lines are thick. A good example would be the maple story concept art. Like in the wallpapers at http://maplestory.nexon.net. Knowing how to save .PNG files with transparent backgrounds is REQUIRED. All works that you submit must be submitted under terms of the MIT License.

GUI Artist
Must be able to come up with a GUI style that can be used throughout the client, which includes the windows, frames, buttons, and ect.

Concept Artist
Must be able to produce kawaii (cute/bubbly/adorable) anime characters that have a midevil/dark halloweenish feel to them.

Font Artist
Hallow[Online] needs it’s own fonts. I want it to be smooth, clean, clear, and crisp (IE: No pixelation, like my test fonts that I’m using). I’ve always been fond of the font used in World of Warcraft, so something similar to that would be nice. I need a few versions of it done. I don’t want it done in a font format. I need it done in a .PNG format with a transparent background.

How to help!
Well, if you wish to help me in my quest for a desirable game, just hit me up at master.furom@gmail.com with some examples. You can only do ONE of the three tasks. You can’t be dedicated to making the concept art and the GUI art. You either do one or the other. This is for the better interest of team management. If I like what I see, I’ll be more than willing to talk to you directly through MSN, AIM, or Yahoo. Also, I’d like to make it noted that I don’t need ideas! I already have a vague storyline sketched out (I just need to write it up and post it). I know how I want the game play to be (I’ll be adding in mini-games and such AFTER I finish up the primary game play, IE: I have plans). Last, but not least, I don’t need pixel artists! I’m not doing “pixel” art for the game. If you want to do the character art, like equipment, characters dolls, ect.. just hit me up with examples. I’ll definitely need you later, but for now I don’t have that stuff planned out. I’ve not yet decided how I’ll format the images for executable use yet.

Written by FuRom

September 30, 2008 at 12:44 am

Posted in HallowDev [Misc]

MySQL Connector/NET is EVIL!

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Well, I finally got around to figuring out how to sterilize the SQL queries. Originally, I was under the assumption that MySqlCommand.Parameters.AddWithValue() would do it without me having to edit too much in my SELECT statement but thanks to the POOR documentation on sterilizing the query, it took me HOURS to figure it out. Now that I’ve figured it out, I’ll help out EVERYONE that has ran across the SAME problem by just SHOWING and example below.

MySqlCommand mysqlCmd = new MySqlCommand("SELECT * FROM accounts WHERE (username = ?username) and (password = ?password)", MySqlConnection);
mysqlCmd.Parameters.AddWithValue("?username", "MY USERNAME");
mysqlCmd.Parameters.AddWithValue("?password", "MY SECRET PASSWORD");
mysqlCmd.Prepare();
MySqlDataReader mysqlReader = mysqlCmd.ExecuteReader();
while (mysqlReader.Read())
{
// Reader stuff here...
}

Written by FuRom

September 26, 2008 at 9:09 pm

The SceneSwitch() Riddle!

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Today I started development with 2 overall goals.

  • Make User Login Possible
  1. Add Login GUI form elements
  2. Add easy access controls for GUI form elements
  3. Upon login, switch from LOGIN -> GAME_MAP (they’re GUI scene titles).
  4. Add MySQL check on serverside.
  • Detach connection from client and reserve it for after the login is established.
After I had ALL of that accomplished, I had to test everything thouroughly, like always. I had GUI test elements in GAME_MAP scene. It was the chat box. You press the return/enter key to access it (gain focus to it). The problem was that, after login, pressing enter would crash the game. I assumed the issue had to be with the new elements I added. I tried to retest the way I had it before it messed up. I just removed the elements and left a button to switch scenes from LOGIN -> GAME_MAP.
It worked PERFECTLY like it originally did. So what was the problem? After hours of messing with line after line of codes I finally figured it out. Irrlicht.NET has a problem with IGUIElement focus! If you have an element in focus and just send it into oblivion without removing it’s focus, you can’t just use device.IGUIElement.SetFocus() again for some reason. I redid my SceneSwitcher() function to make sure all the elements that I have in the GUITable (hash table) is removed from focus if it is focused on.
This one single problem prevented me from ever getting to reserving the connection for logged in users only. That’ll only take 5 mins to implement though.

Written by FuRom

September 25, 2008 at 10:46 pm

Scene Changer & Event Handler

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Today I had 2 goals with Hallow [Online]! 

  • Create an easy to manage Scene Switcher that can switch between the following Scenes: Login / Character Selection / Character Creation / Game Play – Explore / Game Play – Turn Based Battle.
  • Create an event handler that switched in sync with the current scene.
Both of these goals WERE accomplished. They were also simple to acheive. I ended up making switches run inside of the irrlicht rendering device and the primary event handler. All the objects that are rendered are accessible in a hash table. I had trouble deleting all the elements because I had IGUIElements in the hash table as well as IGUIFonts in it. I just used a comparison of the data types to IGUIElement to filter out the excess crap. IGUIFonts and such was removed by clearing the device scene manager. Now that is accomplished, I can take an actionscript 2.0-like approach to making this game.

Written by FuRom

September 24, 2008 at 11:43 pm

Spark of the Hallow!

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The logo for Hallow Online.

The nightmare begins.

Hallow [Online] is MY response to all of the crappy games made by independent developers that are too lazy to add in congruent features along with sexy design! Hallow [Online] planning started Monday, September 15th. The storyline is STILL in development along with other content. The gameplay has been decided. The concept that Hallow [Online] follows is “Build your own”. You’ll be able to create highly customized skills based on the elements you wish to add to your skills. Characters will also be highly customizable. There will be various monsters and quests. Ultimately, I want to bring all players non-monotonous gaming. New features and such will be added often. Not just astheticly pleasing stuff but actual game play!

Hallow [Online] will also be SEASONAL! September ~ January will be the only time that you’ll be able to play Hallow [Online]. The reasons are simple. There will be an end and in the end there will be an overall winner. The server will be accssible year round but the storyline will only be played out September ~ January. Everyone that plays will get to be a part of the story!

When the game is ready for beta testing, it’ll be publicly released in beta. Beta testing is not to be expected until April 2009. So far I’ve decided and implemented my ground work. The programming language is C#.NET. The 3D engine is Irrlicht. Server storage and data will be managed through MySQL.

The basics HAVE been implemented. The client accessed the server. The ability to communicate between client and server is possible. The server processes what the client tells it. The client still needs to process the server’s return data. The irrlicht 3D engine works great. MySQL is properly accessed.

What to expect
Build v1.0.0 ~ 3.0.0 beta
Customizable characters, clothes/armor, customizable elemental skills, monsters, boss monsters, shops, and quests. The quests will be very basic. Slay X amount of monsters. Acquire X amount of items. Ect. Ect. The UI will have an easy quest log for users. There will be a quest compass for the user to find where they need to be.

Build v3.0.1 ~ 5.0.0 release
Weapons, classes, guilds, user shops, and user requested features.
The rest will just be planned as the project pushes on.

As of this moment, the ONLY focus is programming. After I’ve programmed all of the v1.0 features, I will commence the search for texture artists and 3D animators. The easy and fast part is always the programming. The art and content as a whole takes a development.

Also note that Hallow [Online] will ALWAYS be FREE and the game will be AD-FREE! (This does not include the game’s website, after it goes boom….)

Written by FuRom

September 22, 2008 at 12:28 am