Engine and Interactions : Term 2 Week 5

Just before I start, I've only just recovered from a pretty bad fever /flu thing so apologies if this post is more incoherent than usual.


Last Solus 

This week I spent the vast majority of my time learning and implementing Blueprints into my game.  While I had a decent understanding of UDK's Kismet, Blueprints seems to be significantly different so little of my prior knowledge has carried over.

A list of the features I have added this week via blueprints -

  • Front door opening and closing.
  • Single rain particle emitter following player when in certain areas to create the illusion of rain everywhere.  Rain toggles visibility depending on whether the player is inside or out.
  • Desk drawers opening and closing
  • Lantern attached to players camera, along with spotlight that moves according to players mouse inputs.
  • Zoom / focus option (similar to that of PT)
  • Climbable ladder

It would take quite a while to write about each of these separately so I'll just talk about the most interesting which is probably the ladder.  When designing the basement I assumed that ladders would either already be built into UE4's first person template or would at least be very easy to make, but I was completely wrong.  It turns out ladders are far more complicated that I was expecting.  I found and followed several different tutorials but eventually settled on a slightly modified version of this by Justin Plowman.  

The first image shows the ladder blueprints components which just contains the mesh and the trigger area. The second image shows the blueprints script which lets the game know when the player is in the trigger area and sets the gravity scale to 0.1.   Setting the scale to 0.1 means that when the player is trying to descend the ladder, instead of instantly falling to the bottom, they will slowly glide down, which creates the effect that the character is carefully climbing down. The final image displays the script that tells the game when the player is near the ladder and pressing "e".  When this occurs the game sets the player's movement type to "flying" and ascends the player up the ladder.  This may all sound quite awkward but it actually works surprisingly well, which you can see if my most recent dev video showcasing some of the new features -

The video also shows a new radio model which I created this week.  I was reasonably happy with how it turned out, but I still wish I had more time so I could properly polish it.

I also created some basic basement shelves this week, but I'm I'm still in two minds as to whether I should remodel them or not.  The proportions are pretty true to the reference images I was working of, but in the game they seem far too big. 


Dissertation 

While writing this post I realized that I hardly did any research or work for my dissertation this week which I'll need to make up for in my next post.  I did however get feedback for my bullet point plan from last week  which was incredibly helpful.  Based on the feedback I feel I have a pretty decent contextual review, I just need to work a lot on the methodology / case study side of things.


Next Week's To Do List

  • Asset Modelling
    • Crates
    • Boxes
    • Chair
    • Sink
    • Toilet
  • Refining current blueprints interactions / adding more.
  • Dissertation Research
    • More documentaries / conference talks
      • GDC Vault - Dead Space 2
    • Decide / finalize case study criteria