Tuesday, December 04, 2007


I saw a great screenshot and article the other day of a great smoke effect. I then thought that would look nice on the back of a rocket! Now I already have a particle effect in the game, as I use it for the ships engines and the explosions.
This is the simpler version I came up with, no lights effecting it and the tone of each smoke "particle" is now a bit to similar, I think it needs a little randomness and a blackening, as well as the fading over time.

I also created a simpler menu, away from the tacky 3d menu and the flying circling light and in with a nice 2d menu that can easily be customised (for add on packs?) and tweaked. You'll see 2 concept art spaceships either side framing the menu. You can still see the old 3d menu when the game ends, as it still goes back to the old for now.
You'll also see the story screen, which took a lot longer than I thought. It's a simple thing in theory, but in practice it took a lot longer to get it how I wanted i.e. fading in line=-by-line with 5second intervals. It does take a little while to load up this screen. This is because I'm creating a texture on the fly and it's the CreateTexture part that can take 10seconds or so, the delay only happens when debugging from VStudio and is a documented issue.
You'll notice the enemies have a particle generated explosion and then "fall" before vanishing. Later on I think it'll look better if their was a particle generated explosion, but fewer particles and instead of being alpha blended they were spaceship bits, the enemy ship could then be removed under the cover of the debris.

The animation was made with a great little freeware utility called Wink