As seen on the Major Nelson blog, N+ is one of the many games featured in the XBLA “inventory blowout” sale, from June 16-22.
Yes, that is correct: now is your chance to pick up the best version of N+ (according to us anyway) for only 400 Microsoft Currency Units! That’s 5 buckazoids if you’re from Xenon.
In other news, N has progressed to the quarter finals in the great DIYGamer Indie Games Tournament.
Thanks to everyone who voted — you guys rock!
This time around, we’re up against Torchlight, a game we’ve been meaning to try but haven’t yet got around to — which is probably a good thing considering how addictive Diablo can be! Apparently they have a large and active online community, so we’re not really sure what our chances are of making it to the semi-finals. We’re keeping our fingers crossed! 🙂
You’ve got one week (starting June 16) to vote for your favorite here: http://www.diygamer.com/2010/06/torchlight-tournament/
In game-development-related news, we’re in the process of porting N’s main “game simulation” code from AS1 to AS3; so far we’ve already found quite a few bugs, some of them pretty nasty (assignment in a conditional expression?! Thank you Flex compiler for warning about that, we would have missed it again).
We managed to fix the “stuttering up slopes” player behaviour; we had always assumed this was caused by faulty collision at the seams between tiles, but it turns out it has nothing to do with collision! Stuttering is caused by how we were calculating and applying friction, leading to the player becoming intermittently airborne every few frames.
Of course, we only discovered this after having completely rewritten the collision system to be geometry-based (tiles only exist in the editor now)… gah! But this is actually fine, since this new collision system is intended for general use in future projects (and tutorials), and is leaps and bounds easier and simpler than the big mess that it replaced. Silver lining!
We also figured out why bounceblocks launch you so much further if you “waggle” back and forth on them when moving downward: for some reason, we were applying drag to both vertical and horizontal movement when the player is standing. This makes no sense, because if the player is moving vertically then they can’t actually be in a “standing” state…except of course in the case where they’re standing still relative to a bounceblock which is traveling upwards.
With stuff like this, we’re trying very hard to keep things feeling as close as possible to the original, but unfortunately we’re finding that it’s impossible to make things identical without also duplicating behaviours which we’d prefer to eliminate.
For instance, the only way to fix the stuttering glitch was to alter the player’s velocity, since that velocity is what moves them into the air. But altering the velocity makes the movement feel a bit different — even a fraction-of-a-pixel change applied to a single frame (which is what was required to fix stuttering) results in a markedly different trajectory over the following few seconds. Markedly!
Thankfully we have a really nice testing setup where we can run the original unmodified player simulation “on top of” our revised version, which lets us see immediately where and how they diverge. In the case of stuttering, we were able to tweak things to be almost identical.
Our mantra for this rewriting process is “Always remember how badly George Lucas ruined Star Wars.” We’re really hoping that the changes we do make will be appreciated rather than reviled 🙂
In any case, dear N fans, we have your feedback close at hand, and we are considering it thoughtfully. We’re positive that although the revision will not be identical to N v1.4, it will be awesome — rest assured, we love this game immensely, and will make sure we do it justice.