Game development - Freetoplay fighting game for Ouya?


#1

Hey guys, Not sure where else to post this so I decided that the GD is good as any. Im super psyched about the new Ouya console platform (in case you haven’t heard its an open source gaming console that just got funded on kickstarter, its supposed to be sold at $99 & includes a dev kit with every console).

I’ve been wanting to make a free to play fighting game for the longest time, something like League of legends in terms of microtransactions for character skins, and characters on rotations unless you buy, and up till now there hasn’t been a platform that would work (Xbox and PS3 is difficult with the way their dev / policies work, and PC doesn’t have a strong fighting game market since the native control is the keyboard+mouse). To me ouya looks like the ticket.

Anyone else looking to do development for the ouya, or just game development design in general? It would be awesome if we put our heads together and made some dope games for the FGC, without capcom’s BS $60 + DLC crap.

I’d love to partner up with fellow srk members to make it happen! I can do graphic / UI design (im a graphic web/designer) as well as sound development (i do music production as a hobby), I also have a few friends that’s studying entertainment design / illustration at Art Center. The crucial missing piece is people that are more hardcore coders (C# / objective C types.)

Oh also, if there are any seasoned game dev / design vets out there if you could share some insight / tips that would be awesome!

Looking forward to any and all thoughts you guys have!


New console Ouya
Ouya - The future of console gaming?
#2

I cannot even believe this is for real. I am just a little hype for the idea of an open-source home console. I have some (very) basic knowledge of programming, but my strongest point is 2D animation. I’m not terrific at drawing, but I can do some stuff. Basically, I’d like to help with what I can in the case that this actually happens.


#3

How is this any better than Capcoms crap exactly?


#4

Ouya sounds really interesting. I wish I had money so I could back it.

I’m a C++/C# developer, and I’m learning Objective-C. Android is Java, I believe. The idea of an SRK-developed game is intriguing.


#5

I too had an idea for a fighting game and this Ouya thing sounds interesting. I’ll be watching this closely.
And yeah, an SRK developed game does sound like a good idea (I guess).


#6

I have worked on some indie projects for iOS. To be honest I’ve done all my work in the Unity Game Engine which I have a professional license for which releases to iOS and Android. The engine uses Mono based C# for scripts so it works with all mono supported libraries and is really convenient as it abstracts nearly all operating system dependent features but offers libraries for easy access to application code if needed.

If you get sprite animators (3d animations are theoretically possible but would require some sort of cheap MoCap which seems a bit unreasonable unless someone has a setup just lying around) I’d be willing to look into it. I’m a bit busy with an iOS project I’m working on but if you get some strong artists associated I’d be willing to chip in my license, animation tools, and do programming. Unity is pretty easy for any developer to learn in a few weeks that is familiar with C# as it has loads of documentation.

There are some issues though with the concept though. Sprite animations aren’t really “in” anymore so building any sort of franchise off that would be difficult. Your looking at PSVita quality innards for a system that needs to hook up to 720p televisions so it isn’t going to be able to compete with current gen systems in pure looks (though to be honest it could probably look like SFIV … just not tekken). Micro-transactions convert less then 2% of all people so you need to build a large player base to convert that to worthwhile profits so not sure how that works.

I love fighting games and have always wanted to do one though. So if we have artists willing to do it right I’d like to make something worth playing.


#7

If we are actually doing this maybe this can be of some help: http://www.gameinstitute.com/ .
I also know a little java and have a thing for coming up with plots for stories (that is if this game is going to have a story mode of some kind).


#8

Awesome! Thanks for the feedback guys. I’m glad i’m not the only one that thinks this is a good idea =) I’m thinking now how we can all come together to make this project happen. I’m thinking that in the beginning we just have each of us put in our individual specialties and work on this together as sort of a small community group project to make a proof of concept? then if we can get something cool and running we can hopefully get some funding via kickstarter to push it forward? (obviously at some point in time we’d have to set up the business and allocate roles / shares for each of the participants of the project. We might also need to set like a time and maybe like a skype call for us to have a team meeting and go over the project details / whatnot.) What do you guys think?

Development wise I’d think it would be much easier to make the game 2.5 D with a 3D engine / models and run it on a 2D plane, like Street fighter / Mortal Kombat rather than say KOF or Blazblue (as far as i know it’s easier to make 3D model animations than it is to draw and animate 2D sprites. Also it makes it easier for us to update characters / skins / models). I believe for mocap you can do a cheap DIY, i remember seeing stuff like that on indymogul. If anyone has any experience in this realm it’d be awesome if you could provide some advice / tips

As far as engines there a whole bunch out there and I’m honestly not all that familiar with them, I’ve only played around with UDK and unity, but both seems to be more geared towards FPS types. (Although i know you can make fighters with Unreal, since MK was done on UDK, but I believe it requires some serious tweaking). That gameinstitute engine looks pretty interesting, ill have to look deeper into it. I actually sent an email earlier today to the Devs over at Ouya asking them if they have any alpha /beta releases of their development kit that we can play with, hopefully they’ll get back to me so we can have a basic idea of how we would develop on the console.

Sephroth I’ll start talking to some of my illustrator friends to see if they’d be interested in doing some concepts. I’m willing to dedicate some time to do the mocap stuff, hopefully there’s someone here that would be interested / experienced in doing 3D animation. I have some experience with 3D modeling stuff like maya so we can kinda divide and conquer. Also i think it would be awesome fun to capture my kung fu skills into a character, lol (I do a good amount of martial arts, lol).

Feel free to shoot out some ideas on how we can make this happen! =)


#9

GameInstitute engine is DirectX only currently according to their website, so it wouldn’t support the Ouya Platform (mobile GPU’s require OpenGL 2.0 ES specification or lower generally).

I imagine any program that is made to work for android should be pretty straightforward to port to Ouya.

Well any engine has to have tools created for it so that it fits a general game type, that’s the purpose of scripts for the engine. No engine necessarily works for a specific type of game out of the box. Things like “Halo Engine” or whatever are just another engine that they built a bunch of tools for. That tool making is generally what I do, so don’t worry about that aspect. It’s more assets than anything that is a real worry. If a proper asset pipeline can be established the rest is more a function of time put in than anything.

2D is strongly limited by your artists over anything. If someone knows how to properly use AfterEffects, Illustrator, Flash, and/or PhotoShop it’s actually pretty easy to crap out a shit ton of sprites off just a couple base images using mesh deformations and 2d bone animations (same as 3d stuff just with 2d parts basically). Where you get in difficulties with this area more often than not is changing shit in development because the move doesn’t match the hitbox appropriately anymore or it looks stupid and you design it another way after the fact … or similar things. Naturally the more characters you add this problem grows exponentially. I have a decent deal of experience doing that type of animation, but I have to admit as an artist or modeler my skills are pretty C - tier.
I can do some cleaning, vectorizing, and general editing but the more work the artist is able to do on their own the better.

Rough list of order we should probably do things.

  1. Securing Interested Personnel
  2. Decide style of fighter in general (meter and guard mechanics can always be added or removed later in development, but a core concept of how the fighter should look and feel should be established). # of buttons, air dashes, yata yata yata. Things like 2d vs 3d need to be decided based on this and will largely be influenced by the skills of interested personnel.
  3. Begin concept level development of things like stages, ui, characters,moves, mechanics, etc. (long ass part #1)
  4. Start putting stuff together.
  5. Edit and Tweak (long ass part #2)

Also I personally think their is a magic to people not seeing games getting developed so at some stage SRK forum would no longer be suitable for communication. Email is ChaseRLewis73003@gmail.com. I actually need to get a new camera and setup a skype account but I’ll post it after I do that.

Don’t go counting chickens before they hatch though, hard part is getting a group of skilled people that can do the job and keeping them dedicated.


#10

I would also like to be a part of this, but first, I would just like to point out the fact that you are thinking about making a game for a system that isn’t even out yet. Yes, OUYA is a very interesting concept, but at this time, that is all it is.

Furthermore, it has no official website (at least that I can find after a google search)., so that’s a bit odd.
In addition, if you are planning to make a game for this console, you would probably want to know something about the console itself so you can optimize it. Apparently it has a starter kit, but without an official website, how would we acquire such a thing?
Then there’s the question of whether or not it actually supports a second player. It comes with one controller.
Then there’s the issue of netcode, which can and will make or brake a game. Many people will ask "How’s the netcode? Does it use GGPO?"
Another question: does it have usb supoprt? Specifically, can people use their arcade sticks with it?

Then there is perhaps the biggest problem of them all: ACCESSIBILITY
Look at what happened to TvC: Great game, but it was only on the wii. In OUYA’s case, that means people would have to shell out $100 plus whatever we would charge JUST to play it.

I’m familiar with Java/C++ and have been learning Android programming over the summer for fun. . If you know Java, you’re ahead of the game, but the libraries for it are android-exclusive. Still it’s pretty fun once you figure out what is going on. I will tell you guys this: The eclipse IDE for this is super buggy. If you have your xml sheets open and you try building and executing your program, you’ll get errors and the thing won’t even compile. Also, your R.java file that tells Android where all your variables are located at has a tendency to vanish if one of your xml-files has errors.


#11

I’m looking at stories and it seems you need to donate to opt in to “Developer’s specials” which includes SDK access not a lot of information on that or if the SDK is currently available. Since it seems in conception stages I question how useful an SDK at this stage would even be given it is going to have several revisions before release.

edit: ok, here’s how it works. They are offering early run consoles and early sdk access to people that give a certain amount of money. The low run is $699 but was limited to the first 200 people. The only way currently to still get this offer is to donate over $1,337 dollars, lol. It seems that the sdk and exclusive consoles won’t even be available till Dec. 2012. Given the deals they are offering as an exclusive the console will definitely support at least 2 controllers. They are pretty far into development and estimate a March 2013 release.

One current USB 2.0 slot is currently in the concieved design specs though no Ethernet port is. Only wireless though the board in the video they use has a LAN style port. They are currently asking about other things people could “want” so I’m definitely going to list multiple USB slots and an ethernet port. Given their desire to promote “hacker peripherals” I feel these things will definitely end up being included. Reading comments this is also a widely voiced concern.

The above suggests that the current default controller will be bluetooth connected.

They mention on their page that any app that works for android should also be compatible with Ouya (since it uses android as a base that is reasonable). So anything developed for android should work for Ouya. So any engine that works with Android would work for Ouya. To be honest, unless we do system level programming (ie. engine programming) optimization should largely be done by the engine. There are a lot of optimizations that can be done at the script and design level that would be more practical.

Net code is a must unfortunately, and that would require someone with that type of experience. I have little experience with that aspect of programming.

Well on the case of accessibility I think that’s a moot issue. If the console gets support from indies so that it has 2-3 wanted games than it would sell since the price point is only $100. So in that regard your betting on the success of the console as a whole.

Also considering the time investment to tackle the conceptual problems it is likely a decent amount of this information could generally be made public before any real development begins.


#12

Hm~~ Very interesting questions. Seems like there’s a slight barrier of entry before we can get started on building it for this specific console, given that we don’t know the details of their development kit / hardware and also getting our hands on one of these things. Still, it would be very fun to play with the dev kit.

Regardless of the platform though, it’d still be awesome to make a fighting game with other members of the srk community. (I also agree that accessibility is not that much of an issue) Do you guys think its’s viable for us to assemble a small team of dedicated individuals to make a game on a generic platform (say, PC? I’m not sure about android because i believe it’s all made for touch surfaces, which in our case it wouldn’t work) and then worry about the ouya console afterwards? Building it on the PC would be easier in terms of development in my mind because it’s flexible in terms of the programming, with engines available and GGPO already working on pc, but the issue would really be the demographic and wether you can get players on the pc, since traditionally most pc gamers aren’t fighting game players and don’t own a controller. keyboard fighting sounds kinda odd to me. but maybe it can work? what do you guys think?

That aside i think the major initial hurdle is to assemble a team of passionate & dedicated individuals to work on this project, without much monetary reimbursement/incentive. I figure if we can get a group of skilled people together we can formulate the appropriate mechanics/art direction etc… Initially the majority of the work is going to be conceptual and reviewing mechanics etc… through the input from both the artists/designers and the programming team.

I spoke to one of my best friends that’s studying entertainment design / illustration at Art center today and he’s pretty much down to help out design wise with the project (he’s an akuma player, lol). Between me and him we can do a good amount of the concepting /graphic design / some 3D work (of course it would always help to have additional talented people in this field), so with some coders / netcode / 3d animation people we can complete the puzzle.

I’m thinking after we discuss this more we should set up like a big skype call on a specific day and time, between all interested parties to see what we can come up with, who’s willing to participate, and how we can move forward etc… What do you guys think?


#13

Shouldn’t be too hard to put together a fighting game in Android. Making a GOOD fighting game on the other hand… Mugen.

Android has a emulator kit so you can test your program on multiple devices. I’d bet this device will be emulated soon so that you can port existing programs and/or test new ones.

Pretty cool idea, but I’d start a different type of game first. Something like Divekick and yes, I’m being serious. :tup:


#14

The game institute link was really meant for educational purposes. If you want me to come up with a premise for this game just ask.


#15

Is anyone else weirded out by the fact that 1337 is “leet” in leetspeak?

If you’re going to use GGPO, then you’d better be prepared to pony up some cash. I’m pretty sure they’re not going to just let you use their netcode for free.

Regarding the keyboard issue, DJFrioles is the only person I can think of that actually plays ST on a keyboard, so yea the idea of a fighting game on a keyboard sounds pretty awkward. You could just get a controller off of newegg for $20, but then they’d have to spend $20. Since the original idea was to make a game for OUYA, and now you’re thinking of just making it for the PC, there’s a serious interface issue to address. I don’t know about you, but I don’t see a lot of people being turned on by the idea of playing a fighting game on a keyboard.


#16

Well like I offered, Unity publishes to Android and they specifically have stated that Android apps will work on Ouya. Any Ouya related interface code (like reading controller inputs) is an easy adjustment at a later date and we can test on emulated tegra 3 hardware I believe with the current Android SDK. PC fighting game would never get much love.

Honestly a sprite based game is probably the easiest because of mocap requirements, frame cleaning of mocap, modeling (you need hi-res and low-res for proper bump mapping), etc for 3d. If you have modeler’s familiar with that type of work and access to a texturing program like mudbox then hell ya. Otherwise that’s going to be a rough route.

Netcode Concern

Warrior is right though, if you want to use someone’s netcode that’s going to cost $$$. A basic peer to peer strategy with minor rollback wouldn’t be a nightmare to hardcode with Unity as they have that type of support readily built in, it’s more the matchmaking and server stuff that is an issue imo. I know a guy who does that kind of stuff for a living and I’ll see if I can get ahold of him, don’t have his number and haven’t talked to him in awhile so I’ll see what’s up. We’d most definitely have to pay him. Also we could give the game a 5 frame buffer or something built-in like BB or SC5 so everyone thinks the netcode is LEETZ when it’s really just having a massive window to not fuck up.

In the end getting out for $0 invested isn’t really possible if you want a quality product so again, how serious is everyone. Show me some art and I’m all up in this, but till then it’s hard to get worked up. Monetary benefit/incentive is basically in the form of a % of any revenue earned which if released for PC would be a whopping $0.

If you create a decent product though a kickstarter for funds to get netcode could be a viable option but if you don’t show a real product a kickstarter isn’t going to do you any good.

About People

A thing about people is that alot of people on these type of project want to get in to help make design decisions and play-test but can’t contribute anything tangible to the production. That doesn’t do you any good for creating a solid project and adding a lot of people like that just increases bureaucratic arguing among the team. Basically wanting to do the good part without contributing any real work, that isn’t very useful. Generally it’s best to make sure any people brought in can code or do some sort of art at some useful level even if it’s just UI components.

I’ve learned by going through these motions before it’s just not worth doing that type of thing. Again show me someone that can make quality static art and I can get that shit animated but without that no reason to even invest time in it.

Rough List of Assets Needed
N = number of characters

  • BackGround x N Stages + Animation for any moving background character components (luckily only will need like a dozen frames for these type of animations)
  • Character (assume 150 unique frames of animation) x N <- big investment
  • Character Icon Art (generally cahracters need other art then just their gameplay animations for display near healthbars etc.)
  • Font (we could steal an open source one technically if we found a good looking one)
  • UI Components (fairly easy/straightforward to be honest I have components built for other games that I can adapt to work with this stuff in minutes. Also I can do this type of stuff in photoshop easy. Can build a whole working UI with libraries in like 10 min. if we do the conceptual stuff)
  • Stage/Character Music
  • Particle effects (we can lower overhead by using a tool I created to render particle effect animations to sprite animations)
    -other things we probably can’t imagine yet.

#17

edit: Didn’t look at ‘Tegra3’ quad core processor. It has an integrated Nvidia GPU:

[S]I do not see a Video Card…[/S]
It does have a low amount of RAM. The ps3 also has a really low amount of RAM as well so it shouldn’t be a big deal.

This is a really great opportunity for some good developers to make some money. This is why google and apple are making so much money. They allow other people to make money off of their app stores. It’s absolutely time this came to consoles more readily.


#18

Ouya’s Kickstarter goal: 950,000. They’re over 3 million right now.


#19

Majority of which are $10 or less donations. That implies to me that those are potential system sales come march. The big benefit of this thing imo is also as a home entertainment system. Netflix, Youtube, Direct access to a harddrive to stored media through usb, etc. So you get basically the power of a tablet that you hook to your tv that isn’t portable for $100 and that encourages open source peripherals like hard-drives. Seems good to me.

Me and the peeps I’m working with on the iOS game are already convinced an android port is going to be smart just to get it onto this thing.


#20

Well I backed the project and they said they are going to have ethernet so more than likely you will be able to run it wireless or plugged in.