Categories: "Development work"

Character Changes working in Unreal 3


We have recently jumped a huge step in our game, mainly because our programmer Rachel Cordone sent us some script which allows us to have changeable characters from trigger points. Below is a small video just showing what it allows us to do.

It is currently using the unreal defaults, but we are getting our characters in at this present time with her help. Although as you should be able to see with the run through that each character that the test changes to has their own speed and abilities.


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The first character can run very fast and jump, where as the second character cannot jump and is much slower, and then the third character is even slower and cannot jump either.
It is just amazing what she has given us, as without her we may have been in a bit of a sticky situation.

Whiteboxing tests


Through the duration of the production of Void I started carrying out tests with the material editor in the engine, fiddling about with practice textures, and altering them with expressions in the material editor.


Through various testings I came up with a test room for the Anemone Sea, as you can see in the video below.


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One instance that I am still toying with is that if you notice when further away from the orange pads they change in colour, from this I am trying to change the colours to which they are affected by shadows. Where as at this current time they gain a greenish tint.


I had since then put together the Emerald Cavern, and am currently still putting it together, changing meshes, sounds and defaults.


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Nice finished off Rig


Since we started production of the Void project I had only been assigned one task, it makes me feel really bad that I spent so long on it, but it was due to changes each week that I continued on developing it.

I had the task of getting the neutral character rigged, it has gone through many iterations. It started very very simple, but has progressed to a more complex rig.


Which has finally led it to look like this





With the two original designs of the rig, I was unaware of controls and manipulators, all I had previously done in the past was a couple of IK handles and a spline curve, and been told about IK FK Blends by a nice person from Blitz.

Although after going through different steps I then created a good rig which works in the engine. The video above shows it when it wasn't working in the engine, due to an unknown reason. This caused me to have to start the rig from scratch. But it then meant that every step I did with the rig now was tested after being added. So to insure that it didn't have any further problems. If it did I could then go back a stage. I now realise unreal needs tests done constantly as it seems like quite a fragile engine.


Either way you look at it, Unreal has made me more aware of the chances of problems. previously I would save a few different files, but now with each iteration it means if anything is to go wrong, I just have to look for the right file.


We now have a nice rigged character, and Caryn is busy animating it.


Also if anyone is wondering, the Unreal 3 engine does not run on a Dell mini 9, so now I have to figure out another way to take our current game about.


Must also say I really like the movement in the problem rig, makes me think of World Record.

Lash La Rue on Holiday second meeting


Ok so two weeks have passed and I had the job of doing:


  • Design document
  • Squirrel and Duck interactions
  • Destinations
  • NPCs
  • Asset list
  • Scale chart
  • Level designs


I had been concentrating so hard on my rig for Void I didn't have a large amount of spare time to give to Lash La Rue and his adventures. I did however get the design document finished to a certain state, and after this weeks meeting we all decided on the destinations from the list I came up with for the meeting.

Although the whole group had been very busy this week with dissertations and the like, so we set ourselves some more targets and by the next meeting the dissertation will have been handed in, hopefully meaning some time can be put towards Lash.


I set myself the task of doing:


  • Finishing the design document (all of the previous tasks have gone into the design document)
  • Finish the design of the main menu


See you in two weeks.

Void and where I see it going


Well currently we are all hoping to get a finished version of the game out of our third year project.


I am going to be taking it to the Blitz Open day to show it to a few people there, as well as getting to see how Blitz runs at the same time.


We will be taking it to Games Grads, not entirely sure on how much we shall be taken, depends on what is completed at this point.


I would also like to go to Develop this year as well, as I haven't managed to attend the conference yet, and would like to go see some of the keynotes while also showing our groups working to numerous people.


Finally our game will be going to GameCity, mainly thanks to our lovely lecturer David Surman getting a space for Computer Games Design graduates to show our work off.


If any other events pop up Void will hopefully make an appearance.

Lash La Rue On Holiday first meeting since the GGJ


Well the Lash La Rue team had their first meeting today, we went over many things, including the large amount of work that needs to be done in order to have it at a finished state.


I have allocated myself the tasks of


  • Design document
  • Squirrel and Duck interactions defined
  • Chosen level destinations
  • NPCs
  • Asset list
  • Scale chart
  • Level designs
  • Menu screen
  • How to screen
  • Backgrounds for each level - day/dusk/night (TBC)
  • Character animations
  • Other characters
  • Assets
  • Foreground
  • Images from holidays
  • Profile images
  • Cutscenes for the ends
  • Finish screens


Of all that work I set myself the task of the more design based work, so it can all be sorted before going into the more art based side of things.


So for a deadline of two weeks I will be doing:


  • Design document
  • Squirrel and Duck interactions
  • Destinations
  • NPCs
  • Asset list
  • Scale chart
  • Level designs


As long as my dissertation and Void don't take up too much time I may be able to get some Lash La Rue work done.

Void Project Blog


Dear Readers,


As well as reading about the work I produce for the Void game on this blog, the group I am a part of also have a collaborative blog for every piece of work produced to be published on. As reading it from my blog it's quite one sided as I will tend to only post up my work.


I am currently putting up most items on the blog, but I am sure other team members will contribute over time. Either way it's a place for everybody's work to be shown together, which fills in all the pieces our individual blogs are in some cases missing.


On the blog at the moment there is all the pre-production work that has been produced up until now, and there will hopefully soon be images from the production phase as well.


You can find the blog at


Thanks for reading my blog, feel free to visit every now and again.



Void - Production Stage


Ok we have started on the production stage of the game, one part which I'm sure the majority of the group has really been looking forward to. I must say I am really looking forward to seeing all our work envisioned into an actual playable space, especially the orange pads from The Anemone Sea as I really love the design of them.


Well I plan to start off white boxing in the mechanics with Andy, while also rigging the main character and doing a bit of modelling on the side perhaps.


Really to be honest though I don't mind what work I do on the project as I'm always willing to give everything a go.


I'm currently trying to come up with a plan of how we should space out the production of our work, although I feel the whole group needs to go over this plan so we can all decided what time is needed for what. Although in the mean time I've put together a quick planner for us to use and stick up in either E8 or H2 at university.


weekly planner


Our deadline is around the start of May, along with us all having to finish and hand-in our dissertations in March as well. I think as long as we put our minds to it, it can be achieved, especially after taking part in the Global Game Jam and seeing what was produced in just two days.


Although i have been devoting more of my time to my dissertation recently so that I can get it out of the way, but that does mean I'll be able to use my time just on working on Void once the dissertation is out of the way, as opposed to worrying about both of them at the same time.

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