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dreammelter

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Last Minute Build Failures

The prologue to this project's post mortem, which I'll write after I take care of some pressing matters...


...I submitted (an unfinished) game to the jam and it was probably up for about two minutes. I thought I had forgotten where I saved the current build of the prototype, only to find out at the very last minute, that it had actually failed to compile. There was no playable prototype to hold a spot for.

Well then. 

It felt bad enough to fall a bit short of my original goal, but I'm now it won't even compile. After all the crashing and everything I went through today to put something together. OTL While I'm proud that I didn't procrastinate during this project, not having something for everyone to look at is a tad bitter sweet.

Sooooo -- instead of being a sourpuss and regretting the handful of hours I spent doing something other than finishing (like sleeping,) I'll just drop a few pictures! Cuz I got pretty close to done!! Closer than I've been for any of my other failed projects!





There was still quite a bit of work left importing and arranging everything...

I'm going to reserve any other comments for now... My ma's leaving town for the weekend, so I have to get ready to hold the fort down... (For the past two weeks, I've been neglecting some other duties.) I think I'll write the post mortem/"final days" recap when she gets back. 

Anyways -- the lesson for today is... well, be prepared. For anything.

'Ello Ello - Day 10 & 11

Just a brief update as I feel like going to bed a bit early tonight... Which mostly means I'll have even more work to do tomorrow, but I only got 5 hours of sleep yesterday haha... I'd rather wake up early to plow thru the to-do list.

Unless I figure out some way to stake awake. (Cuz I really should.)

Recap

First, Day 10.... My notebook says I didn't do much of anything. OTL I reviewed some texturing tuts, learned a bit more about materials in UE4, failed to properly import some objects... then decided to get started on at least a few tiny models instead.


Today was essentially an extension of that:

I think I should've started on these a lot sooner... doing one or two a day in between UE4 sessions... I'm also afraid the design of the items won't exactly be cohesive together. >>;;; ((Can't tell if I'm just as afraid of them not physically fitting together. I'm feeling a bit obsessive using exact measurements over here lol.)) I didn't spend too much time solidifying design details whenever I went to paper, so I oughta at least try to keep the color palette unified.

Task List

DoneTo DoDropped/Rivised????
10 models (excluding variants,) 2 textured.- 22 (small-ish) models. (1 day)
- Finish texturing and importing by the 3rd.
...some of the sprite designs were revised on the fly cuz reasons. ^^;;;; (namely cloud sprite.)
...A lot of designs were changed, actually...
...Totally forgot sprites have decorative particle parts too... might have to drop those. :/
Material nodes. I don't know enough.

Brain Dump

Got a chance to listen to some new music:

  • Geeks album is fire (...cuz the name of the album is 'Fireworks' hahaha sry that was dumb. orz)
  • JJ Project is back with Verse 2. All of the songs are A++ but Icarus is ♥.
  • Meanwhile Zico cleverly gave us a self-reflective mini called Television (just in time for him to reappear on TV) #AGenius
    • The first track is called "Genius"...........jsyk. ((I'm so so sorry))
  • Millic and Groovyroom and offonoff = more  quality, full-length albums.
  • Lyn has once again blessed us with the mini "Joue Avec Moui" what a Queen she can do anything.
  • IDK why I'm reviewing/promoting this stuff here but w/e. I played thru 198 songs today. Yes. I like to keep track of that number.

Thoughts:

  • To do lists continue to save the scatter-brained mess known as dreammelter. Please give them an award.
  • If I don't finish it's gonna be because I chose to sleep. (.n. ) So I think I'm gonna stay up... my body feels fine. (Just need a break from the screen.)

Hello Hello! Week 2 is here?? (OAO )

So I figured I'd get this outta the way ASAP so I can start working on some assets today. I'm essentially here to recap what went on during the semi-hiatus of this log. Figured I'd just drop day-by day bullet points of the most substantial things... Alright, now where'd I leave off....

[!] LONG POST AHEAD {!]

Recap

Day 5: I'll briefly cover this day, since I did post something...

  • Started the inventory tut early and breezed thru it. (Sans a couple weird errors. One of which was likely a bug...)
  • I apparently woke up late after that. Just for dumb reasons. I was kinda sore, but I finished the tut and added a 'dialogue' box feature. Not much of a system, but it did enough for what I knew lol.
  • Spent a lot of time with UE4 and mental lag btw. And apps lagging my start bar cuz they need updates. (pls go awei)
  • All that stuff is in the video from my last post.
  • Announced dev-log hiatus.

Day 6: Worked till 6AM the next day oops. I was spacing out pretty hard that day.

  • I spent a lot of time around 4AM this morning (again) rearranging my to-do list and clearing up this notebook. Partially b/c I didn't make a log for Day 5 yet, so there's stuff hanging around.
  • Quickly tried out AI tut to see how it works. I know I could use it to handle dialogue, I'd just have to figure out a sys… I practically unscheduled that day so.... that's off the list.
  • I broke something in the tut anyway. I seriously break everything in the top-down template.
  • Reopened my project to see most of the folders I put in there yesterday went missing??
  • Discovered I needed a specific class for HUDs.
  • Material editor is extremely slow on my computer....... tried copying the cursor decal from topdown example, and it was just... lag lag lag. My laptop is old and slow and uses integrated graphics, but here I am -- trying to build something in 3D. Like a madman.

Day 7: Spent too long trying to reinstall antivirus that afternoon and suffered a severe headache the rest of the day.

  • Solved a couple issues with implementing 'collection' game mechanic but my headache got worse so I tried to rest.
  • Got up after a couple hours to solved more issues. Headache came back by the end of the day.
  • Scaled project down to go for a more 'toy' like experience. Something like the Zen demo… maybe with comedic relief.
    • I want to stay on schedule to meet primary goal (finish something) and wanted adequate time to work on models.
    • The 'collection' sys I was working on was taking too long to get it to work how I want, and rushing to stick to schedule isn't helping. So.. you won't be collecting little sprite friends, but they'll still be around.

Day 8: Wanted to post a playable, but I woke up late again.

  • Cloned the project to revise everything... I was lucky it crashed after everything was said and done lol. I briefly revised the level flow. (on paper.)
  • Camera teleport/vantage points work! It's also a decent workaround to the editor being slow to register when I click a camera.
  • Sadly all of that took me like... 4 or 5 hours. Not much was done. This is why I'm cutting things out lmao. I'm gonna quickly rewrite how this level will flow, then layout the level as planned.
  • Prepared "locked" actor class. (objects you click to change its state and 'unlock' something in the level. Like the pillars. Or the flowers, not that they unlock anything.)
  • Added more functionality to the UI: you can now close the game from menu and close the dialogue box  \o/
  • Spent 2+ hours trying to get set up a sort of level event... managed to get an array to check when all 'locked' actors were 'unlocked', then play an animated sequence.
  • No church Sunday, so I stayed up late to build something playable.
    • It's built, I just didn't upload here yesterday: [download from dropbox]
    • Don't expect anything awesome. It's really ugly and full of default placeholder mess.

Yesterday, Day 9: I already posted the playable ↑ A lot of the stuff I wrote up there was actually done in the wee hours of this day, but whatever lol

  • Spawning stuff works. Yahoo. They even stop spawning after a set maximum. \o\  /o/
  • It also doesn't work. The time I have to wait for that array I made to check the locked items got longer.
  • My editor is also slowing down a lot orz
  • "Maybe we'll spawn things, but differently. Maybe they gotta be attached to the ground or an object . Maybe I'll just scrap them altogether because they're stressing me out." We're officially building a toy.
  • Called it a day there. Trying to avoid winding up with a headache like Day 7's  again.


Task List

DoneTo DoDropped/Revised?????
A variety of things, some of which was removed.BUILD/TEXTURE MODELS AND GET 'EM IN THERERevised the game concept again; dropped the 'freely spawn particles' feature in favor of a  'click this thing to see what it does' toybox experience.So many questions, I'll bring them up in a special post later.


Brain Dump

Thoughts/Comments:

  • There's a playable. Linked above. It's ugly and horrible but here it is again. Sorry it's only Win x64 right now.
  • I apparently don't know enough about Blueprints lol
  • Setting things up to be as reusable as they are customizable is a life saver!! (Next to 'to-do lists.') I build a template with some custom features exposed, then throw it where something like it should be in the level. Later, I can come back with custom pieces. I believe this is an aspect of modular design, right? Or something like it.
  • We're not doing the next game jam alone now that I've gotten my feet wet. I think I've proven to myself I can stick to this thing, despite all the doubtful thoughts in the back of my head lowkey wondering if "game dez is really my thing." Last time I didn't like something cuz I was bad at it, it suddenly became my fave when I figured it out. (*cough* art *cough* 3D modeling *coughcough*)
  • Realized I forgot to talk about what I was most proud of in my Recaps. I thought being able to spawn stuff was a cool thing I did, even if it was imperfect and essentially broke everything else.
  • I'm hoping spending more time outside the editor this week will restore a bit of my sanity.

I almost played thru a whole playlist of 766 songs but here's a small handful of em:


Oh, another gif from day 8:

I think I only have a vague idea of what the classic point and clicks are like haha... I wanted to set up different vantage points around the level because the camera controls (after I modified them) were acting screwy. (Like, if I clicked anywhere, the camera wouldn't rotate with my mouse anymore ><. And then I don't know how to animate them or anything yet, so I went with the simplest idea.) However, now that I started a blank project, they don't move at all (=u= ;;;) I might have to bring some degree of view control back. (I heard using the mouse input axis was one way?)

Aw man. The game mode and controllers have screwed me up more than a few times already lmao. In the blank project, I just figured out I had to set the HUD and if I want anything I made to appear. And then actually having a Character to control seems to make a difference, too. 

I had a brief look at the side-scroller and top down projects earlier today... I ended up settling for first. (After I, uh, broke the top-down camera,... I wasn't ready to touch the other one lol.) I'll likely be back with some questions as soon as I can scrape the rest of my brains and the base of this project together. XD

HI YES HELLO EVERYONE.

Yes I missed Day 5 and I'm about to miss Day6, too.
I'll prolly reappear late into Day 7/too early into Day 8. Hopefully with something playable.

So if you need me I'll be screaming at my computer for every hour I'm not sleep.
(You can still catch me on twitter/insta though. I post very minor "live-updates" over there.)

I'm glad I started prototyping sooner cuz actually putting together what I just learned (with some tweaks) is proving difficult lol.

Anyways here's a short video I recorded of what I learned to do and how it totally isn't going right now:

((Note: final game won't be a FPS. Just following a tut here... ><;;;))

Peace and love!

oohh, that sounds good too. ( o3o)~ Might try that first and see how it goes lol.

Yo Day 4...

I spent how long trying to make switching between multiple cameras a thing?? All day?? But the result I ended up going with took about 30 minutes to set up in comparison??? Is this a wasted day? IDK. Maybe.

Recap

I. Am exhausted.

I was up till 4AM watching the inventory tutorial (because it's also a UMG tutorial and I figured I had a decent understanding of variables, so I didn't need to watch the Doors one.) I still woke up on-time (before my alarm actually,) spent a few hours finishing the last couple of tut videos, then debated the actual gameplay of my game. Last time I was trying to figure out the actual setup and concept, so I guess it makes sense this strikes me now. I only had a vague idea at that point. It's slowly starting to seem more and more like an interactive art project than a game...

When I realized what time it was, I wrapped up the last few thoughts on that and hopped into the editor. In order to start prototyping the actual game ASAP, I set today's goals to "camera control set up" and "maybe get some UI in there." I spent 3 or 4 hours, however, trying to figure out some camera system I could build at my level that would have it rotate (or whathaveyou) to another viewpoint (max 4.)

The editor would take 10 secs to place a camera in the level, then another 10s to realize I selected that camera, and yet another 10 to do anything with that selection. IDK if it's me (most likely) or if cameras are generally kinda slow in UE4. (I'm pretty sure it's me.) Once I got the four cameras in there, I realized I probably needed them to be blueprint actors (so I could script and reuse them. Good thing swapping out actors in a level is easy.) The Camera actors I made sorta worked... but not exactly how I expected. Pressing the left or right keys would switch the view to the camera on the left or right of it... except I couldn't switch from that camera because I wasn't exactly jumping to that camera's controls...

(T___T) I'm tired. I tried. Let's just keep it as simple as possible:


(( Four camera views you can choose by clicking on boxes. Simple enough. ))

I considered different approaches (like an array, which got on wonky on me, or sequencer events,) but those would require more research/testing that I didn't schedule for. Matter of fact, I'm trying to squeeze in more time to build assets. I've been feelin' the urge to just "BUILD THE DANG GAME" lmao. Except I don't know much of anything, so I'm trying to stay calm while I'm learning.

Task List

DoneTo DoDropped/Revised?????
Camera Controls. (Or at least what I'll do about them. >>;)Basic UI and "Sprite" classes. Or build inventory tutorial. Probably both. (1 day)Pruned game's concept/gameplay. Dropped side-scrolling.How to make Mouse controller less annoying and get rid of default pawn without screwing the game up??

Brain Dump

Songs that improved my mood after the camera mess:

  • Crucial Star - Fire
  • Monsta X - Trespass
  • Heize - Don't Know You
  • Lotsa BTS .
  • Everything Day 6 released this year.

Thoughts:

  • When will I get the win10 creators update? I oughta check tonight. I'd hate for it to show up midday or something. My computer acts dumb when that happens.
  • I should definiely look at that Zen Garden demo again.

Comments

  • Spoiler alert for the curious. Here's a list of what you might be able to do in the 'game' if tomorrow goes well.

Lmao cheating. Thanks for the link! I was gonna avoid doing too much painting, but after looking at those models I just might have to! XD

Woah - It's Day 3!

I'm taking a break to essentially update my current status. I may or may not update this with whatever I work on after I write this post. (Depends on how tired I am by then.) I might keep dev log posts short like they've been, too.

Recap

Opened up my project and tried to follow some of the built-in tutorials.... uh, the crashed two times in that period. I knew this day was coming, but not this soon. Friendly reminder to Save Often lol.

After following the Blueprint Components tuts, I decided to try setting up events for mouse interactions. I had a bit of success with them in the Level BPs yesterday, so I figured I'd keep things simple and just print to the screen if the mouse did something to an object in the level. That worked out fine. I also used the bit I learned about needed object references (and one way to find them) to get the sparks from yesterday to spawn where the blue sphere is. That worked too. Things were good so I took a minute to tend some other responsibilites...

And that's when I saw that the bathroom had flooded. My sisters' room is right next to it, but I don't think she noticed yet. She had just got out the shower and was tangled in her shirt when I walked in. So I was rushing to get her clothes and stuff off the floor before the water got to them. OTL We had to move everything around while ma tackled the problem itself.

Once the maintenance man came by, I sat back down at my computer to try a different approach to processing mouse interaction. One doc I read used Actor BPs (which I had just learned how to make) and another walkthrough also used Actor BPs. I was trying to add Blueprint components to actors I already placed in the scene... which you could say is sorta backwards.

Actor BPs have different features available to them that BP components do not. BP components are added to actors, but I'm not exactly sure the scene actors I was trying to add them to were the scriptable actors I needed. IDK. All I know is that what I was doing wasn't the way to do it. XD Now that I've got that cleared up, Mouse events work!! (And are easy to add.)


(lol sorry this gif is so ugly... I was making this in a rush.) When the mouse interacts with the blue sphere, it prints to the screen and spawns a particle when clicked; when it interacts with the box, it also prints and affects the Point Light component when clicked or hovered over.

Task List

DoneTo DoDropped/Revised?????
- Learned how to (properly) handle Mouse events with Actors!
- Learned more about Blueprint Actors and Components.
- Variable Door tutorial; optional inventory tut. (today)
- Spawning Actors, editing their attributes in-game; Camera and UI; (2 days)
Nothing?Nothiing for now.

Brain Dump

Moar songs:

  • Crucial Star - Fire
  • Zico - She's A Baby
  • Topp Dogg - Open the Door

Thoughts:

  • Using Blueprints brought back some ActionScript memories lol. I made a platformer in Flash once with AS3 (i think it was AS3. When did they stop allowing movieclips from being scripted?) I would make a character one movieclip with all the necessary art and code in it, then put him in the scene (which had its own bit of art and code.) UE4 seems to be about the same: you have Actors and Levels you can design/script seperately with their own BPs, then put 'em together.)
  • I might go for an isometric game? Or maybe not. Will figure out presentation tomorrow.
Posted in DEVLOG - Kotaro

Hey!! Don't feel discouraged at all!! \O/ Everyone will make progress at their own pace. You already have some counters, patrolling enemies, player and camera controls, player death effects and some assets! I'd say that's quite a bit for day 2 (out of 13 or 14!) d(^^ ) 

It'd be great to see some screenshots if you're cool with taking them~ :>

A game about flowers♥♥♥ Looking foward to this!!

Greetings Day 2!!

I WOKE UP LATE!!! (Ò囗Óױ)

Okay, well, usually I sleep past noon (2:12PM to be exact,) but for the past two weeks, I've been getting up like a regular human being who wants to be productive. I think there's something about being back in my own bed again that undid all that. Thus why I started 4 hours later than yesterday... (though the day before that, I didn't do anything productive until 2 or 3 anyway. Meh. I'm late.)

I'm gonna keep today's post a bit short -- I have a lot of video tutorials to catch up on...

Recap

I didn't get as far as I'd have liked for two reasons: the late awakening and the grand underestimation of Blueprints. The first issue is easy to remedy -- just set an alarm to 9 or 10AM. Boom -- done. The second... will require more foundational research. I didn't exactly start on the right foot today, instead perusing graph snippets thinking I could just copy what I saw. To my defense, that was (sorta) how I learned how to program in AS3 all those years ago... (Actually, it's still very much how I teach myself web design when I need it. XD)

So here's how the day went down.

I was itchin to draw out a specific visual representation of what I actually wanted to build by the end of these two weeks. Good luck trying to figure out what this is though:

  

The top box is something like a night sky, the middle is a patch of grass surrounded by water, and the bottom is supposed to have some greek pillars, a stairway, and fire. I thought I was gonna sit down and draw something detailed... that went out the window like the spur of the moment thing it truly was. Maybe I'll add design details to it and clear up the scope over time... I'm currently more concerned with getting basic things to actually work in the engine.

Right before I opened up the editor to get jammin', the fam walked in with pizza! \o/ I don't care that I've been eatin it for weeks!! Meat pizzas, cheese pizzas, pepperoni or vegan pizzas -- PIZZA is PIZZA!! (Okay, so a little part of me is actually concerned about undoing my weight loss and further endangering my health -- BUT PIZZA.) And if you really wanna talk about good things, when I opened up my project from yesterday, I could see the particles floating around! I think it's needless to say I was stoked to get started like this.

I took the time to really read the documentation on the Geometry brushes and learned that static meshes would actually be better to use. Since I don't have any ready right now, I'll be using the brushes. After I set down a couple boxes and stairs to get familiar with their settings, I moved onto the selection of resources I gathered to learn about Mouse controls.

and...um... The material was lighter than I expected. I got an overview of how to do things, but not exactly what I needed to know? Or maybe it is what I need to know, but I'm actually confused how to implement. I suspect the issue is that I'm looking at examples that likely assume you know the basics of Blueprints. (Which I don't.)

There was one point I actually managed to spawn a particle emitter when a blue sphere was clicked. (Except it just spawned at the origin, so I deleted everything.... I didn't capture any screenshots before that, sorry.)

the sphere you could click

I'll have to come back to this tomorrow. :/ We'll see if I can get that sphere to change color when clicked and get some other objects I set up around the level to be draggable or light up onHover. If I can figure this out, we'll be good to go!

Task List

DoneTo DoDropped/Revised??????
Very rough visual of final game on paper; Familiarized myself with the Geometry Brushes; Learned how to enable Mouse controls in a game mode.Actor/Level Blueprint Studies, Get Mouse Controls to do something. (1 day)Revising my approach to learning Blueprints. Might need an extra day. Also undid the cancel on particles.How do I actually process Mouse input in BPs to trigger events?? Am I doing something backwards?

Brain Dump

Songs I could hear over the noisy family today:

  • Hieut - No.Mercy (bruh the way that beat drops)
  • Candle (ft. yo faves: Quaimo, Chamane, and Jay Moon) - GVO (this is my theme song)
  • Up10tion - Attention (more screaming and dancing... in my head.)

And when it wasn't so noisy:

  • Monsta X - Stuck
  • Live - Right Now
  • Mobb - Hit me (like 'hit me up fam' not violence lmao. I wish they put 'up' as part of the English title.)

I have no thoughts or comments today. Well, outside of "I'll have to postpone looking around the forums again (.n. )"

  • No wait, I'm tired of flying around during playtesting... however, adjusting how I move around right now has little to do with the current set of tasks.

You seem to be making some real strides here!! :D How many levels were you considering to build?

*takes a bow* thank u very much haha

Hey! Thanks for stopping by, but the models aren't mine ;u; They're all part of the Starter Content available in UE4. Epic uses Maya in-house, but I'm quite sure you can get the same results with Blender♥ (or if you prefer, 3DS Max.) As for the shading and color changing lights, that's more of Epic's texture/material work, lol. The colors on that glowing wall caught my attention, too. XD

(Edited 1 time)

Hello Day 1!!

I'm updating during the first hours of Day 2 cuz I had to ride back into town earlier... I hadn't eaten much of anything by the time we left (in the midst of a storm -- as a desert native, I'll never get used to this much rain.) Since I have the tendency to get car sick, I spent the 6hr ride dozing on and off to deal with the weariness. Note to self: if you think you need to grab a snack before the road-trip, please do!

Recap

Today I wanted to familiarize myself with some basic controls and operations of the engine. The UE4 documentation has a lot of "Quick Start" tutorials scattered throughout. A few days before I gathered a couple of the most relevant ones on a page in OneNote; the Epic Launcher also had links to resources, so getting started was easy. I even made sure to update everything the other day, just to remove any obstacles to instant progress!

Except, there was somehow another Launcher update available today. No problem -- I'll just make a sandwich in the meantime.... if I can find the peanut butter before then. (I didn't.)

When I finally got the editor to open, my little ol' laptop was wheezing. I almost forgot my poor baby wasn't exactly the best machine to do 3D work on -- nevermind the Unreal Engine. I waded around the load of menus and buttons for almost an hour, trying to optimize performance so I can move at a decent pace in the viewport. I will honestly admit I briefly considered going back to Unity... (except I really don't feel like programming right now. =u=;;;;) I did what I could, found out what the Quick Menu was, and ticked the necessary fidelity options available there. After that, I hopped into the Level Designer Quick Start, fiddled with assets and....

what

what's happening

Yeah. Ha. It looked simple enough but it was quite the exercise! One that I failed visually, though conceptually, I think I got a handle on how things work. This week is all about learning how UE4 functions anyhow. :> A baby stopped by, so I took a break before moving onto the next task. (Learning BSPs/Geometry brushes... I didn't take any screenshots cuz I was playing before I had to hit the road.)

I didn't do too much today... considering my hands were growing sore after the first 3 hours, I think that's okay. (More notes to self: stand up, stretch, and go talk to babies more often. And drink more water, dude.)

Task List

DoneTo DoDropped/Revised"?????" Research.
Getting Started tut (set up a simple level... no interactions.) Also figured out a file/folder structure.Geometry brushes, Mouse controls; Level Events, Variables. (2 days)Whatever the original idea was. Good thing too. Open worlds are huge. I can barely build a room.Why aren't particles showing up on my computer?

Brain Dump

Some songs that kept me goin' today:

  • Toppdogg - Amadeus (OH VI-VI-VIVACE~!)
  • iKon - Rhythm Ta (AWOO- BOUNCE! RHYTHM TAAA)
  • Paradise - SES (*more grooving, less lyrical screaming*)

Some thoughts:

  • I planned out the two weeks day-to-day, even though I told myself not to...... OTL It was actually useful. Sometimes I was like, "Ok, now what?" and that schedule answered the question.
  • I didn't want to paint any game assets, but I might have to... need to schedule time to really flesh out the look of the game (and some sorta method to achieve it. Something that uses a few pieces very well and maybe blends with 3D.)
  • Today's post isn't very detailed (i am weak rn,) even though I still took an hour to write lol... wonder how long the next one will be.
  • I also post tiny updates to twitter and instagram, btw..
  • I'm dumping particles! Still wanna know why they don't work. If I have time this week, I'll look at the official project sample.
  • Must check out other logs again soon ><;

[Edit: the headers looked funny...]

(Edited 1 time)

Thank you!! I played around a bit in UE4 today and definitely decided to go with something much much smaller lol. Like, even smaller than what I imagined for Plan B (which was supposed to be a 1/5 of the size of Plan A... I need to be at a 1/50 or something cuz wow the work needed for a decent scene is "!!")  I'll be sure start writing down any unanswered questions to share later. d(^^ )

[Edit: what omg how did I miss that link?? What a lovely game you have there! I was thinking about going for a more stylized look, but wasn't sure how easy it'd be to implement outside of UV painting... Do you have any tips? :D]

'Ello fam! Dreammelter here. Are preparations going well?

As I'm writing this, there are about 6-7 hours till the event begins... I've been getting ready for the past two days. I was gonna start this log off as "Day 3" or "D-1," but it'd be better to just consider this post an introduction... The real Day 1 is tomorrow, after all.

Tomorrow. I feel like screaming -- my brain can't seem to comprehend what's happening is a reality.

Anyways, the general format of this Dev Log will be: Daily Recap, Task List, and Brain Dump.

  • Daily Recaps will recount whatever happened during the day, relative to the development progress of the game. This section will also include notes on what I am/am not proud of and any playable prototypes, if I have 'em.
  • The Task List will just be a simple log of info: what's done, what's been dropped/revised, what's next, then any ideas I need to research or consider. I'm thinking of making a Change Log somewhere... otherwise, I'm keeping it in my notebook... If anyone gets curious about it and would rather see a single compilation of the completed tasks and game updates, I'll append it to this post.
  • The Brain Dump section is actually here to help clear my mind of related, but not exactly necessary info. Things like additional screenshots and art or (sorta random) thoughts and comments. It's a misc dump, sure, but you know how the saying goes about one man's trash...

I feel like making a separate post for this next bit, but meh -- What is "Moment Monuments?"
Or 'Monumental Moments' or whatever. This 'Fountain of Dreams' thing that I don't really have a name for.

Long story short, I, at first, wanted to build this cool little 3D point-and-click 'open world' game with an abstract narrative. Something along the lines of what some would call a Walking Sim, nowadays... (or like another failed project of mine, now that I think about it.) When I tried to put it on paper, it wasn't easy to understand exactly where the game was headed. Ideas seem small in your mind, but once they get room, they like to stretch out, y'see. I don't think I want to worry about uncovering what it won't reveal to me during development. Therefore, I've been (mentally) looking at ways to make it a much smaller task that features the same elements... but compressed, if not fewer.

And honestly, I still don't know exactly what it is right now - there's only this image that vaguely looks like that Super Smash Bros "Fountain of Dreams" stage with little glowing sprites playing around it. Moment Monuments (MM) is probably gonna be some toy-like experience where u can collect little glowing, talking sprites and throw them in the fountain. Or the fire. Or whatever I decide to make part of a "Monument." I'm currently leaning towards a side-scrolling format, but we'll see how that fares during prototyping.

"So What's the Plan?"

The main objective for me in this Jam and for this project is to build a complete experience -- good or bad. (Though I hope it's at least decent.)

I'll be using Unreal Engine 4 to build the game and my notebooks (OneNote♥ and a sketchbook) for everything like brainstorming and task management. The first week of this Jam will be dedicated to learning UE4 and prototyping the game, while the second will be for fleshing it out... though something tells me I might be using a few days in that week to actually work on the prototype. We'll see.

Well, that's it for today.
Let's have fun tomorrow!!

1. Hi there! What's your name? Want to introduce yourself?

Hello hello! Dreammelter here! I'm an interactive media student... who's sorta been outta college for a little while now and hasn't tried to make a game since high school. ><; I consider myself a 2D artist  s l o w l y  embracing 3D. Nice to meet you all!

2. Did you participate in the last jam we held? If so, what do you plan on doing better this time? If not, what's your reason for joining?

I haven't participated in any jam previously (If you ignore that one time I did enter one and then promptly exited a few hours later....orz) 

I legit came here on a whim lmao. I was just casually visiting Itch earlier when I noticed it on the front page... I saw this was a jam open to beginners that would last two weeks so I immediately joined. At that point, I didn't even realize this jam is aptly titled for my first foray haha.

3. What games are your favorites? Did any of them inspire you, or made you want to make your own?

I like a variety of games -- even in genres that I generally don't get the chance to play long enough to truly experience. While my go-to game for this sorta question is usually JSRF, I do love Tekken... and the form of role playing that I'd engage in with my sisters, which we just referred to as "The Game." (Now that I think about, most people call it "house" or "make-believe.") For me, I love the feeling of experimentation and exploration, so I'm often inspired by action/adventure games -- especially those with some level of simulation in them (like sandboxes or "immersive sims.") It's the main genre I feel like I haven't gotten to witness the full breadth of.

I should also mention that FF inspired me to pursue 3D art. Thank you for introducing me to my life's greatest conflict, Square Enix; I no longer wanna draw comics for a living.

4. Do you have experience with game development? What did you do/with what engine?

One time I built a board game outta glue and construction paper when I was a kid. It was like Monopoly but with more cars and shops like the kind in Mario Party 4 and it didn't make my sister hate me. (Oh, and it featured my OCs.)

Then in high school, I (sorta-not-really) learned how to program a meteor-shooting game in Java and, the next year, attempted to build a 3D open world RPG w/ somewhat complex mini games in Unity........... Like an idiot. My partner and I could've done more than an 80p design doc and a couple models if I were more disciplined (or-- even better -- scaled the scope of the game to something more manageable,) but... I was convinced everything would be fine. (It sorta was, but I was definitely unfulfilled/disappointed.)

5. Tell us about something you're passionate about!

Korean girl/boy bands. Fight me. I've been in that game for almost 10 years now.  Did I say that? I meant sociology and philosophy. Or puppies and good vibes. Or CG and game dev. God I love game dev why haven't I built something in so long?? I spend more time watching YouTube videos and reading articles about it that I just... forgot... I could... dig in. With my own two hands.

6. What are your goals for this game jam?

  • One: Finish a complete game/experience to learn some UE4 Blueprint Basics.  Every goal after this is an optional enhancement to consider.
  • Two: Craft it so the player would glean something about the theme from the experience. (Guess we gotta figure out exactly what veeeery soon.)
  • Three: If Two is going well, polish the atmosphere of the game a bit. I'm not expecting to reach this point.

7. Any advice to new jammers (if you're a veteran)?

I am not a vet, but man lemme tell ya: Scope is no joke!! There a number of things that could probably expand your game to be bigger than you thought, so be flexible and ready to just cut things down to size. Ask for opinions/input, too.

The example models he linked  from imgur in this post seem to be free models from trading sites... although one of those models are also listed for a high price on other sites?

  • This site here specifically lists all the same sword renders in that imgur post, with no author attached, while another page  does mention the source, which can be found at this profile for 3Dniator. He shared the same model for free and features the gun model that also shows up in the renders from imgur -- Maybe Fiskehoved is that person as well? It seems to be a fresh profile... (It could be best to contact them for closure.)
    • 3Dniator has a blog/portfolio... the associated email is not the one Fiskehoved shared, but it's not unusual for someone to have multiple emails. It just doesn't make sense he'd share that one instead.
    • I don't think it's a stretch for someone who lives in India to be able to speak fluent Danish and English, but in this case, it's suspicious. (Unless 3Dniator goes to school in Denmark now and forgot to update his location.)
  • This one, however,  has the sword listed for $219 from a completely different user.  No sign of the gun. Just thought I'd note that. You might have to start checking post dates to get a clear idea of who did what first. (except this site doesn't have any listed OTL)
  • BTW The gun came up with a few more hits than the sword.
  • Um, if I'm not being too nosy... here's a youtube page likely associated with the email Fiskhoved dropped btw... (found it via G+. I say likely cuz i can't double check the email of this YT, but the names and icon line up.) You can try contacting this person, too...

I originally wasn't gonna say much of anything but the initial post in his thread personally tipped me off as a little strange...  IDK if he was misguided in his pitch by showcasing "the big names" that use Maya -- an industry standard tool --  instead of his own work... he said he was new to the 3D artist scene, so it's possible... (however really odd. The more research I do the more slimy it seems tbh.) I'd rather not jump to calling a newbie a fraud...  but... something seems fishy. (Nevermind what images come up when you try to google Fiskehoved this is not the time to be punny.)

I really hope you can get into contact with someone so you can work with some peace of mind again!! Also, I hope everyone will do a little research on future team mates who don't link something along the lines of a legitimate portfolio or personal blog. Y'know.... Something with some personal identity that you don't have to google... They may not have completely finished work, but if they can at least share WIPs, that'll be better than nothing. If they're dishing out quality, they should have a track record somewhere.