Best Laid Plans

Another slow week this week unfortunately. I vaguely remember saying something to the effect of "maybe this week will be better" in a previous post, but alas, that was not the case.

I started this week with the intention of knocking over the post-campaign screen layout, the settings layout and cleaning up a couple issues with responsivity in the existing screens. It turns out that real-estate agents can waylay even the best laid plans. After a rollercoaster of outcomes, emotions, and cash, it looks like we've finally bought this apartment we've been chasing for three weeks now.

A screenshot of time tracking software showing a bar graph seperating my weekly time into time spent on exoloper, time spent on other (admin) and time off (for various activities) Time off was 21hrs, 43mins, Time on exoloper was 12hrs 51 mins, and admin was 1hr 5 mins.

I promise this won't turn into a blog post on time tracking as a parent, but its relevant to gamedev, I swear.

I took Monday off to recover from not having any personal space for nearly two weeks. Then Tuesday through to today had me on the phone nearly non-stop to real estate agents and dealing with components of the upcoming move. This combined with a seasonably hot week (40C on Thursday was a banger) has led my overall motivation to be through the floor.

Anywho, to the good stuff.

While my initial plan of two extra screens + some fixes didn't quite work out, I did manage to implement the Unit Paint functionality. Its more or less lifted from Charge, but has scope for some interesting applications, particularly in that I plan on using a system called "Trim Sheets" to texture units in the game. If you haven't come across Trim Sheets before, go read this article. Basically instead of texturing every UV surface 1:1 on the UV map, you create strips of texture to reuse across the model / multiple models. This will work particularly nicely with greebling and adding detail to the Exos / tanks down the line, something I didn't bother with so much with Interloper.

For now, you get to see the paint system in all it's glory here. It's just big blocks of colour, nothing too special, but you get the idea. A gif of the loadout screen, paint-section in Exoloper. It shows the user pressing colour buttons in the UI and those colours showing up on the exo in pre-defined spots. Glorious technicolour

I've also refactored my UI layout systems further to accomodate switching between portrait and landscape more seamlessly (which required some headache inducing fights with Unity's UI systems) and finished most layouts for the core main menu pages, if a page isnt finished, it's at least stubbed out.

One last note, the current live build has a quickplay feature, where you can just dive into a game without having to worry about a campaign. This will be removed as of the next update. It'll be added back in a post-launch patch, but with it's own unit editor, map selection tools, and more. I've dropped it temporarily to allow me to focus on the core launch package.

To finish up: I'm sure next week will be easier, surely.

Exoloper Tasks completed: