Author Topic: Kitsune's Curse (Development)  (Read 2109 times)

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Offline reidrac

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Kitsune's Curse (Development)
« on: 23:53, 29 August 17 »
23400-0

All the time I was working on Magica I couldn't stop thinking that the engine was way better than the iteration I used in Golden Tail. Not that I'm not happy with it, but I think I can do better now.

Golden Tail ended with a "to be continued". I guess is time to know that happened to Kitsune...

I've just started this and it may take a while until is finished, so stay with me. I'll be posting updates on Twitter, and here (although less often, sorry!).
« Last Edit: 00:07, 30 August 17 by reidrac »
Released The Return of Traxtor, Golden Tail and Magica for the CPC.

Offline keith56

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Re: Kitsune's Curse (Development)
« Reply #1 on: 06:40, 30 August 17 »
Great to hear about your new project!
I look forward to hearing more!
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Offline ervin

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Re: Kitsune's Curse (Development)
« Reply #2 on: 09:38, 30 August 17 »
Best of luck with the dev!
Looking forward to progress updates.
 8)
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Offline mr_lou

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Re: Kitsune's Curse (Development)
« Reply #3 on: 13:11, 30 August 17 »
Always great to get new games for the CPC.  :)
Unfortunately I'm way behind checking new games. Will have to catch up soon.
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Offline VincentGR

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Re: Kitsune's Curse (Development)
« Reply #4 on: 15:01, 30 August 17 »
This is fantastic!!!
To blit, or not to blit?
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Offline Targhan

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Re: Kitsune's Curse (Development)
« Reply #5 on: 21:14, 30 August 17 »
Grreeeeaaat! Golden Tail is really, to me, the best action game released these last years. I thought the gameplay based on disappearance/power gain was very clever. I'm pretty sure this sequel will be even better :) .
« Last Edit: 00:23, 31 August 17 by Targhan »

Offline reidrac

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Re: Kitsune's Curse (Development)
« Reply #6 on: 21:22, 30 August 17 »
Grreeeeaaat! Golden Tail is really, to me, the best action game released these last years. I thought the gameplay based on disappearance/gain power was very clever. I'm pretty sure this sequel will we even better :).

Well, there will be changes, and hopefully that will improve the idea.

I mean, you don't want me to make the same game again, do you? :)
Released The Return of Traxtor, Golden Tail and Magica for the CPC.

Offline Targhan

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Re: Kitsune's Curse (Development)
« Reply #7 on: 00:25, 31 August 17 »

Quote
I mean, you don't want me to make the same game again, do you?


It would actually be fine to me, the first game was great :) .


Oh, please add a password or save game if the game gets huge!

Offline reidrac

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Re: Kitsune's Curse (Development)
« Reply #8 on: 23:39, 12 September 17 »
Not a lot to show yet, I've been tweaking and preparing the sprite engine for the game.

I tried a prototype using a reduced memory buffer, but it was too complicated to even get it right; although the memory saving is tempting enough that I may try it again, but it makes more sense to do it when the game is more advanced (I tried the prototype with Magica and that's not ideal).

So for now I'm focusing on performance and I'll think about memory savings later.

Anyway, also I wanted to announce that Kitsune's Curse will have a loading screen by Vanja Utne.
Released The Return of Traxtor, Golden Tail and Magica for the CPC.

Offline reidrac

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Re: Kitsune's Curse (Development)
« Reply #9 on: 00:53, 02 October 17 »
I finally decided to implement my engine idea, and I'm happy that I didn't give up because the results are totally worth it!

Basically my usual tile/sprite engine uses a linear back-buffer split in 8x16 or 8x8 cells. That buffer is used to compose the scene (background + sprites) and track the cells that have changed between current frame and the previous. Then the screen is updated drawing only the cells that change, of course as fast as possible. It really helps that the back-buffer is linear, unlike the CPC video memory. Drawing the sprites is trivial and quite fast!

This works very well and I've successfully used the idea in all my CPC games so far, and I'm happy with it: it provides performance in exchange of memory use.

And that's the only weak point of the idea, as it uses a lot of memory and makes quite hard to make big games in 64K (please, don't start with the 64 vs 128 argument; not interested).

Since Magica I've been thinking on how to reduce the memory usage while maintaining the strategy of tracking changes, because most of that back-buffer is not used (there's a limit in the number of sprites you can move per frame anyway).

Now, this is the idea: instead of having one large buffer, each sprite splits the draw operation in cells (e.g. 8x8), using  the cell's linked mini-buffer if it exists, or allocating a new one. Every time the screen is updated all mini-buffers are unlinked, so in practice only "sprite height x 2 + 2" mini-buffers are require per sprite in worst case (the sprites don't overlap). Say that you want to move 10 sprites of at most 8x24 (like in Golden Tail), and your buffer is just 2816 bytes.

How big is the difference? Well, in Golden Tail that back-buffer is 13056 bytes (plus the structures to track the "dirty" cells). So that's a lot!

The downside is that drawing the sprites is quite complicated now. Other operations are simpler and I save bytes and time (for example, the translation from the linear back-buffer to the CPC video memory is gone), and that helps a bit to compensate for that complexity drawing sprites; but I don't think a game like Magica would be possible with this engine (although I haven't tested it, yet).

Anyway, I think I can't more or less get the same performance than in Golden Tail, with a lot of less used memory; which means that Kitsune's Curse will be a larger game.

I'm starting now with graphics and re-implementing the platforming engine to "fix" some bits in Golden Tail that could be better (based on feedback from players), and I'm experimenting with some new ideas that hopefully will add to Kitsune's Curse gameplay.

And that's all for this update!