Sunday, January 24, 2016

Swipe & Shoot Update 20

First of all...HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO ME! Well, birthday eve, I suppose. Anyways, we made some decent progress in Swipe & Shoot today. It wasn't tremendous, but it wasn't small either. First of all, Level 9, the level designed to top Level 8, is now complete! It's debatable if it's more difficult after all, but it certainly was quite a struggle to beat. Here, check it outhttps://youtu.be/fyzpqRlzq9c.

We also started on the latest level, Level 10, loosely inspired by an idea pitched by beta tester Luca Herlein. Here's another preview, this one much lower in quality. It will have a roof eventually, so don't worry. Check it out: https://youtu.be/Tg8aGPyTvdU.

Alright I have to go, so don't delay! Check it out today!

Trust me guys, there's some awesome stuff coming. Also...20th update!!!

Thursday, January 21, 2016

Swipe & Shoot Update 19

Just a quick update to say that, for those who somehow haven't found out yet, the latest version of Swipe & Shoot is fully functional and available to test. Be sure to send us your feedback to the NEW address, swipeandshoot@gmail.com, where we will be collecting all of your feedback. We still have work to do, so keep testing and have fun!

And for those who don't believe all the levels can be won, check out this video: https://youtu.be/vbEueuUaRdk to be proven wrong. 

And for those who don't believe I made it through the whole thing without dying, check out this video: https://youtu.be/m6K4igQ4aZE to be proven right. 

AND...if you send us a screenshot (again to the above email) of the victory screen on Level 8 (don't just take a screenshot of the video...so to be sure you'll have to get a different score), you'll receive special rewards! Even more rewards if you're first!

Wednesday, January 20, 2016

Swipe & Shoot Update 18

There are only two reasons for this update. One is to set the record for the shortest Swipe & Shoot update. The second is to say that we appreciate your patience, but for some reason, the app now crashes upon launching. In fact, you guys are probably better off than us, because at least you can play at all. The update is complete and optimized, we just need to fix this problem first. Again, thanks for your patience!

In fact, to reward you guys' patience, I'll reveal to you loyal readers that there is a hidden sniper rifle in one of the levels. Only three people know where it is, so good luck!

Tuesday, January 19, 2016

Swipe & Shoot Update 17 (w/ feedback)

I know I normally don't post multiple updates per day, but this update, though semi-minor, is pretty important. Plus, I guess I'll include some updates regarding feedback here too...

Firstly, the app is through beta app review. However, we have decided not to open it for testing because we want to fully optimize (or at least somewhat optimize) the levels and overall game to minimize framerate issues. Some levels are nearly unplayable due to the lag, even on slightly newer phones (though it hasn't been tested on the iPhone 6 since we don't have one, so maybe it would work fine?). Anyways, we hope to open the app up as soon as possible, but if you REALLY want it now, just let us know somehow. And why mention this here rather than on Schoology or in person? Well it's simple: we aren't going to release it to the average casual Swipe & Shoot players until it's good, so only the hardcore blog-readers like you will have the power to get Swipe & Shoot released early.

But to satisfy this update, here are some bits of feedback we received last week that we will include in the full game eventually:

Glitches:
No glitch comments yet...

Levels:
We do have bigger maps, even in this version. In fact, all the maps look a bit bigger now, but you'll just have to see for yourself. One map in particular is going to be much larger (well, longer rather than larger) than the others, so prepare yourself. We also rearranged the endless map, so it's now a bit bigger (almost too big), and more suitable for endless play.
Regarding the "tower" idea (Luca Herlein), there are rooftops levels now, and there will be a "climb-the-tower" style level in the game, just not exactly as you described it (so we don't have to make each floor with a unique design).
On a separate note, the next "level set" will be pretty quick to make and filled with some other highly-suggested features, so stay tuned.

Weapons:
We haven't received much feedback regarding weapons (previously approved weapon suggestions are still going to be included), but we WILL be eventually adding a laser weapon (Nathan Cramer), but we probably WILL NOT be adding a grappling gun (unfortunately). Maybe it will work later, but for now, it is not a high-priority weapon.

Audio:
No comments on the audio, though we DO PLAN ON ADDING IT ASAP. We just need to find sounds and make music...

New Areas:
The historical settings idea is great (Zachary Jennings), but we may just add it as it's own level pack. That way, despite there being multiple battles in multiple various locations, we don't need to create tons of new levels based around each battle/war. Other than that, no suggestions for areas that we can remember, except for the factory idea. We might just put that into another level pack, but I hope that gets added.

That's all.

Swipe & Shoot Update 16

Just a quick update while our teacher has yet to arrive:

Firstly, in order to play the web version, you will NEED TO CLEAR YOU CACHES. Here's a page on my old website that tells you how to do it in various browsers:
http://njew.icnc.com/clearyourcaches/

Secondly, we are aware that the mobile version (the web version is still untested) is full of framerate and rendering issues right now, so optimizations are being made. If you hate those, DON'T UPDATE YET.

Also, since it's worth mentioning, here are some things we plan on implementing for the next update, which won't be quite as amazing as this one:
- Arrows will be over enemies as well
- Improved main menu
- Overheating for weapons
- At least 2 new levels
- 1 new endless zone

And for those of you who gave feedback last week, just know that we'll be gathering it together and deciding what will be included soon...
(though I'm pretty sure none of the people who gave feedback last week read here)

Monday, January 18, 2016

Swipe & Shoot Update 15*

No jokes here, because the AWESOME NEW UPDATE IS OUT!
Well, getting beta app reviewed...but still complete. So sorry for the late update (time-wise and date-wise), but it's not like anyone was waiting, so...

So while you are waiting, here are some sneak preview screenshots of what we've got in store!





We can't spoil everything, but we put a TON of work into this new update, and crammed it with new features, minor bug fixes, and more. Here are some of the big changes:
 - New levels
 - New weapons
 - Perspective change
 - Basic title screen
And some minor ones, that still took a long time, so they're worth mentioning:
 - Added visual borders
 - Somewhat more balanced enemies
 - A weapons menu
We couldn't fix everything wrong with the old version, and we haven't been able to implement all of the new suggestions yet. In fact, now there's probably a bunch of new problems, but hopefully this new update will satisfy those of you who continue to play. We gave you guys credit in the credits, so if we forgot to mention you, let us know!

We are also aware of lag and optimization issues, so those will be addressed ASAP.

And if you just so happen to be wondering why this update didn't come out on Sunday, there are a couple of reasons. One reason is that we were playing a video game for most of the day...but the other reason is that I wasted the rest of the day making this other game, that turned out somewhat fun but also extremely frustrating (to beat).
Check it out: njew.icnc.com/SHC/AsteroidEscape/index.html
It's not going to be a major focus of ours, but if you like it, let us know. And yes, there are many problems with the game, but again, I made it in about 3 hours, so it's not perfect.

Okay, I need to go now because our weekend is over. More features coming soon!

PS Also I added the asterisk to this update because it's for an actual update to the Swipe & Shoot app. If you want to find new features, just like for the asterisk!

Thursday, January 14, 2016

Swipe & Shoot Update 14

No introduction here, just wanted to say to all of those who keep up to date here that the new Swipe & Shoot update will hopefully be released THIS SUNDAY, so you don't have to ask anymore. I won't spoil everything just yet, but here are some things to look forward to in the new update, some of which were suggested by you!
 - 5 new weapons
 - 3 new levels
 - A title screen
 - Minor bug fixes
Gotta get back to work, but we hope the update comes out successfully and quickly! Remember, it will have to go through the BETA APP REVIEW once again, so we will hope to release it a little before then so it reaches you on Sunday. But regardless, we thank you for your patience. We put a ton of work into this new update and it's full of new features., so we hope you keep playing and having fun!

Tuesday, January 12, 2016

Swipe & Shoot Update 13

Unlucky 13? I don't think so...

Don't want to get into too much detail, but we've got 4 awesome new weapons ready for the new update! And sure, we have only about 3 people playing the game who will care about this, but hopefully that number will grow once some of those bugs are fixed, title screens are added, wheat fields are optimized, motorcycles are easier to control, and that darn void gets fixed. (And in case you couldn't tell by the fact that I mentioned those things, ALL of those will be/have already been addressed in the latest version). So I won't spoil too much now, but if you want to find out about those 4 weapons and how awesome they are, you'll have to search for it! It's somewhere on the Internet...

Well I guess if you made it here then you're dedicated enough. You and the two other people who are awesome enough to check here probably aren't expecting this anyways, so just find it here: https://youtu.be/GngtwXZQF7A. And I hate to spoil the surprise, but one of them isn't actually supposed to be all that good. So I'd say 3 awesome weapons. 
And since you might be wondering, the sniper rifle is a hold-and-release weapon. And it's not really meant for nature levels, so don't worry about not really being able to see the green laser. And by the way, that "death" sound effect is temporary, I hope. Well, I have to go write an essay now, so...

Sunday, January 10, 2016

Swipe & Shoot Update 12 (w/ feedback)

So I'm thinking of doing these on a regular schedule rather than whenever feedback comes, but we'll see. We don't get much feedback in general, but long-time supporter Nicolas Chin gave us a ton of feedback a few days ago that's worth mentioning.

Glitches:
No comments on glitches so far, but we have fixed the "shooting-through-the-wall" issue mentioned earlier. It will be included in the latest version.

Levels:
Nothing major regarding levels, though you may notice a slight change in Level 4 and a different change in Level 3 for reasons mentioned before...see if you notice. 

Weapons:
A flamethrower was suggested, which we have considered implementing before, but it will take some time to put in. We'll see if it works out, but it would be an awesome and unique addition. 
On the subject of weapons, we also plan on including another of Nicolas's suggestions, an overheating system (of sorts). Overheating will be time-based and different for each weapon. The weapon will glow red as you shoot, and will prevent you from shooting if you continue to shoot after a certain point, though we decided it won't damage the player. 

Audio:
Nothing new here

New Areas:
Wasteland was mentioned a second time, so it seems that a wasteland area will be something to expect.
A jungle was also mentioned, though based on the perspective and gameplay, it may be a bit too difficult to navigate, or if made less tree-dense, too similar to the nature areas (though there would be some differences like treehouses and such). 
A beach idea also sounds pretty cool. Imagine the possibilities with water...though remember, water physics are...interesting...so it will take some time. 

Other Things:
Just to address some other ideas that Nicolas mentioned:
He also suggested we add a home/title screen, which I suggested to Jack a while ago as well. It will be included in a future version, but it's just up to Jack to make the art and stuff...
A leaderboard was planned as well, but there's one major reason it might be the thing that takes he longest to implement. See, leaderboards and other server-based storage requires use of databases. A lot of people know about them, but I'm not one of those people, so it might have to wait until next year (maybe my next I2 project...if I'm still in I2). 

And speaking of databases, if you want to see someone who actually spent a long time learning about databases and has some games to rival my own, check out lernerone.com, an ongoing project featuring games made by the creator of the website, Joseph Lerner, as well as some games of my own. It's WAY better than my website (which I will not link to because it really is pretty pathetic), and even though he doesn't go to SHC, he's still a smart guy and he's made some great video games. A lot of our games are really old and require Unity Web Player, but there fun for what they're worth, and have some elements that were re-used in Swipe & Shoot.

And in case you were wondering, no, he did not ask me to add that bit, I actually asked him if I could. Now if you'll excuse me, I've got a whole new project to start on, that's a little more...deadly. And no, you won't get that reference until and if the game comes out. 

Wednesday, January 6, 2016

Swipe & Shoot Update 11 (w/ feedback)

First of all, thank you again for all your feedback so far. Although I can't work yet, we will do our best as soon as I get back. 

One other thing to note before I get into the details, updates will be posted here every once in a while regarding what ideas will be implemented from you guys, and what we won't or can't put in. We'll put the names of those who provided the feedback, if they chose to put their name with the form. 

Glitches:
Regarding the "shooting-through-the-wall" glitch noted by Sawyer:
We were aware that this existed, but there were minor gameplay features that were lost with the code that prevented the glitch. Jack suggested we remove the code for now, which we did for the beta release. This code will be re-implemented and refined as soon as I get a chance, so do not fear. There are other glitches too, but we'll have to wait and see if you guys find them...

Levels:
Both of the people who submitted feedback so far: Darian and Sawyer, agreed that Level 3 was too difficult. Though not as much for Darian. We have a way to solve this issue, and in addition, we will add a "beta unlock" feature that will unlock all levels, so that you can test every level, even if some are too difficult. That being said, although it's acceptable for the first few levels, we can't make every level too easy...

Weapons:
Both melee weapons and grenade-type weapons will be added. We just need to wait for Jack to make the models...

Borders:
So far, people like the borders, but would rather have a visual added rather than the blue void. We will decide what to do AFTER we receive more feedback.

Audio:
So far, our two testers would like there to be ambient sound effects. Though one of them didn't turn on the sound, so we'll have to wait for more feedback. 

New Areas:
So far, we think the "Nuclear Wasteland" idea from Sawyer is great, and we love the "Star Wars" themed idea from Darian, but just to be safe, we might just generalize it to be a "futuristic sci-fi" area, with some nods towards Star Wars included (like a lightsaber-type melee weapon!). Now remember, new areas take the longest to implement, so you can either be patient with Jack, or send emails every other hour to 19jsouthard@schp.edu and tell him to hurry up. 

That's about all! Keep checking back here if you want to see if your suggestion will be in the game! 
Also, I think that this might set the record for longest non-required blog post here...