Aside 54: Out of My League

The main problem with my game development right now is that I’m just not clever enough to do the things that I’m trying to do. Bot obstacle avoidance is a very complex problem and, while parts of my approach are fine, the whole thing starts to wobble as I layer on more and more features.

Maybe it’ll all be fine in reality; my scratchpad level is, after all, festooned with obstacles deliberately placed to stress and confuse the system. Maybe once I build real patrol routes on real levels things will be much smoother.

I am beginning to wonder if I’m punching too far above my weight, though — and what will happen when I finally get knocked out.

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2 thoughts on “Aside 54: Out of My League

  1. From what I’ve seen, you’ve been making good progress on your game so far. Please don’t give up.

    If obstacle avoidance is really too hard, you can sort of fake it instead of trying to find a real solution. Remember that you control the level designs, and as long as your system is good enough for those levels, then players won’t know that you haven’t really solved the problem of obstacle avoidance.

    Given how little we know about the scope of your game, we can’t really tell if you are punching above your weight class. You can reduce the size of your game if you feel that you cannot finish the game in a reasonable amount of time. Being a solo developer is very taxing as you have need to be skilled in a wide variety of roles. You don’t have to create a huge game. Instead, you can create a small but well done and fun game.

    If you feel like you’re going to burn out, you can take a break for a while. It would probably be best if you didn’t burn out in the first place, however.

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    • Yeah, I might have to scale back in the end. Ultimately I’m aiming for late-90s in all aspects, so in the worst case scenario, the AIs will just walk directly towards the player and, if they can’t reach them, turn back and return to patrolling. The obstacle avoidance stuff is supposed to make all of that smoother and nicer, so they don’t get stalled at the slightest hitch, but you’re right — I can hide it with level design until I feel ready to tackle it again.

      I am in the process of taking a break, but I do worry that something as complicated as this won’t be so easy to restart once I’ve cooled off…

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