woensdag 1 juni 2011

Long time no see


It has been a while since our last blog update. And no... we weren't on holiday past few months! ;)
In fact we've been working on our new projects. One of them is our new upcoming zombie game! Shooting zombies from the first person perspective
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At the beginning of this project I've been working mostly on the 3D models. The zombies themselves, but also on the environment in which the game takes place. But the past 3 weeks I did some programming. My main focus was the zombie AI. Which is, at first thought, not so hard... Just walk to your target to eat it's brains!

The main challenge was to create a system which guides the zombies through the environment without bumping/walking in to walls and other obstacles. Once again I got back my pathfinding system from Panic at the Zoo (PATZ), which worked pretty good in that game. But for this game it had it's drawbacks.
PATZ's pathfinding is grid based, not node based. Which wasn't a big deal since the environment of PATZ was small. But with the zombie project we want to have a bigger and more organical (not squarish, as with grid based systems) kind of space to work with. Therefore I decided to write a new pathfinding system which uses a node network based on a 3d mesh. A so called 'Navigation Mesh'.

To keep it short, each vertex in a so called 'Navigation Mesh' is a node, and the triangulation of the mesh for example, determines the node's connections. Since the nodes have connections and positions in 3D space it is possible to calculate paths between them. Currently the basic zombie AI is working and it is already pretty scary to see all of those zombies walking towards you...

Also, check out our brand new Facebook page about this project! :)

-Joep

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