My Modern Battlezone Pet-Project...

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Re: Sneaky-Peaky of my baby project...

Post by TheJamsh » Sun Jun 07, 2015 11:20 pm

Been doing a bit of streaming while working on this. Those not interested in the programming side of things, go to the last quarter or so of the video, where you can see Spawners working properly, with some extra functionality and explosions etc...

http://www.twitch.tv/thejamsh/v/5924831
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Re: Sneaky-Peaky of my baby project...

Post by TheJamsh » Sun Jul 19, 2015 12:14 am

New Update. Quadtree sorting for faster searches / comparisons and stuff. Started on Tag weapons. Done more since... just forgot to post this here...

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DYrIbXOm_Nk
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Re: Sneaky-Peaky of my baby project...

Post by TheJamsh » Tue Jul 28, 2015 8:27 pm

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Re: My Modern Battlezone Pet-Project...

Post by TheJamsh » Wed Sep 23, 2015 10:18 pm

Starting to take shape now. Also finally managed to recreate the BZ engine-flames using a special vertex shader. Requires a little bit of extra time from the artist to do some simple vertex-painting and add a bit of extra flat geometry, but you can have flames of any shape and size, you can even animate the vertices of the flame mesh if you really wanted to... Took a bit of bloody doing but worth it!

Also tarted up a lot of other things too. New FX coming soon...

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zBAliZDXapA
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Re: My Modern Battlezone Pet-Project...

Post by bigbadbogie » Thu Sep 24, 2015 4:01 am

I noticed in that last video that your target reticle is projecting behind your vehicle as well as in front.

Assuming you don't want that, you can use a 3D vector to determine the reticle's 2D position and still have the correct X and Y coordinates, but you can use the Z value to tell if you're facing forward or backwards. Z never goes above 0.000f when you're facing backwards and is always 0.001f or above when you're facing forwards.
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Re: My Modern Battlezone Pet-Project...

Post by TheJamsh » Thu Sep 24, 2015 7:23 am

Yeah it's actually a really easy fix, I just need to remember to do it haha, I just need to hide the reticle when in 3rd-person view (though, there'd be no lasers yet).

It pretty much does what you say, shoots a ray out from the front of the craft (not the camera since that has camera lag applied) from a HP_Eyepoint socket, and then works out that position in Screen-space. There is one issue right now which means it doesn't take 'roll' into account, so I still need to sort that. Also need to make the weapons 'tilt' their sockets towards a target when you have one as well, since that currently doesn't work. BZ is a complex beast...

Next up is definitely particles and new audio though, and I'm still putting off the mammoth task which is Reconciliation / Prediction for network movement. The game as it is would be fine over LAN, but unplayable over internet due to the input latency (Server waits for input from client before simulation starts) - I started on it a couple months ago but it's probably the hardest challenge I'm going to face with this game, outside the sheer volume of network data that I'm going to have to shrink down. Unless I want to write my own lockstep + deterministic physics engine :p
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Re: My Modern Battlezone Pet-Project...

Post by bigbadbogie » Thu Sep 24, 2015 8:03 am

Yeah. Multi-player is terrifying. I'm not even sure that I'm going to attempt it at all. Maybe somewhere down the track.
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Re: My Modern Battlezone Pet-Project...

Post by Ded10c » Thu Sep 24, 2015 9:58 am

UE4 multiplayer is not fun unless you have a team of technicians working on it. I had to do so much refactoring to get my sound manager to work last year.
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Re: My Modern Battlezone Pet-Project...

Post by TheJamsh » Fri Sep 25, 2015 8:22 am

Lucky for me I've worked on Multiplayer games pretty solidly for the last 18 months haha, my team has an obsession with it so I was forced to learn it and I can now do it relatively well, it's certainly a challenge though. I would definitely say that if you're ever going to do multiplayer, do it from the beginning, because adapting something for MP after it's been done for SP is an uphill struggle.

But.. that's pretty much why I'm doing this anyway as a learning challenge! Started work on AT-Stab FX last night... will post soon!
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Re: My Modern Battlezone Pet-Project...

Post by LtFEED » Sat Sep 26, 2015 3:12 am

MP is easy in UDK, and rock solid........

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Re: My Modern Battlezone Pet-Project...

Post by General BlackDragon » Sat Sep 26, 2015 4:41 pm

*cough*

Even if the network code is good, the game code can make it 100 fold more complex. MP is the most unpredictable environment for coding, as multiple humans are around, and who knows what crazy shanannagins they'll do!
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Re: My Modern Battlezone Pet-Project...

Post by TheJamsh » Sun Oct 04, 2015 9:53 am

The most difficult aspect of the Multiplayer is the bandwidth usage, and movement. BZ2 has a massive advantage over me in that it uses it's own deterministic lockstep physics, which are pretty much essential for a game of this style. In theory it means that you only ever need to submit the movement for that frame to the server, and the clients can all simulate locally. It's unfortunately a terrible approach for fast-paced FPS games though since you have to wait for all clients to send data - and you're therefore limited by the slowest connection (which I would guess, is why other players are less -smoothed- over the network in BZ2). I think BZ2's multi-world system is a way of trying to counter that.

PhysX is unfortunately neither of those things, so it relies on constant transform / velocity updates from the server to ensure everybody stays in sync, for everything from tanks to projectiles. When you have a couple hundred bullets on-screen, that can ramp through your bandwidth pretty quickly so I'm going to have to get pretty creative with it.

I can get around most of this by only sending the initial packet for Projectiles / Ordnance, but it does mean that things like Magnet Mines & Magnet Shells will be a thing of the past, because if clients simulate it differently, they're out of sync.

On another note:

GOT AI WORKING. This represents a significant battle with the engines very one-dimensional AI system that is totally aimed at bipeds... (sound familiar??) The code that transforms the AI instructions / path finding into actual movement is about six lines long atm so it's very unsophisticated and a bit 'friendly', but the important part is that it actually gets those instructions now...

The advantage of this is whatever optimizations and improvements they make to AI pathfinding, I inadvertently get them too. The only downside is that NavMesh is prone to errors at the moment, but It'll get better over time I'm sure.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=c4tEM02vDUM
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Re: My Modern Battlezone Pet-Project...

Post by General BlackDragon » Sun Oct 04, 2015 7:27 pm

Lmao keep that as a "Ram" command :D
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Re: My Modern Battlezone Pet-Project...

Post by blue banana » Thu Oct 08, 2015 3:17 pm

This is truly an impressive project. I continue to be astounded by the immersion the game provides. Nice work on the AI too! :)

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Re: My Modern Battlezone Pet-Project...

Post by LtFEED » Tue Oct 20, 2015 10:46 pm

your better off coding around the nav mesh system (nodes / pylons). Knowing EPIC - they will never fully debug that system.

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