2010

Game Connection Europe, a foxy event

This year, the 10th edition of Game Connection Europe organized a new free contest titled “Selected Projects”. Its objective : showcase and identify promising games in production, mostly “small” games made by quite unknown developers.

A dev friend told us about the contest two months ago so we submitted Seasons after Fall. And it seems like the jury liked the concept and mood of the game enough to made it one of the 20 “Selected Projects” games.
Being part of this program allowed us to meet other professional developers but we also had the opportunity to pitch the game in a really short but efficient 5 minutes session to some “key people” like editors and investors. We (Guillaume, William and Buster) had lots of discussion to choose the good guy/cat for this presentation, and we finally decided to send Guillaume.

Continue Reading

Seasons after Fall: spritesheet animation

WHAT? One month since last update?
We can’t be serious!

Don’t worry, we are not dead (yet). It’s been a busy month and you will see this in some future articles. But for now, let’s talk about some tech used in Seasons after Fall.

Today we are going to talk about spritesheet animation. But before we proceed, we are going to take a look at some vocabulary.

>> Vocabulary

Vertex

A vertex is a point in space. Composed with 2 other colleagues, vertices form triangle shape.
Generally, a vertex gets attributes like position (x, y, z), normal to the surface it belongs to (nx, ny, nz), color (r, g, b, a) and texture coordinates (u, v)

such a lot of infos in such a little space

Continue Reading

Super Meat Boy (Team Meat)

Last time we talked about a game we love it was about Saira, ten months ago. But we love a lot of games !

Super Meat Boy is now available on Xbox Live Arcade (800 MS points for a limited time then 1200 MS points) and it’s a bloody good game !
SMB will also be released on Wii, PC and Mac soon.

You probably already know what is Super Meat Boy if you read indie games news. Maybe you’ve already played Meat Boy, a flash game created by Edmund McMillen and Jonathan McEntee that can be seen as a prototype of Super Meat Boy now. Or maybe you’ve seen this trailer made like a 90’s commercial :

Here at Swing Swing Submarine, we are really excited because we wait for this day since months, because we love the works of Edmund McMillen (Gish, Aether, Time Fcuk), the musics of DannyB (Meat Boy, Canabalt, Fathom) and because Tommy Refenes, programmer of Super Meat Boy, is very talented and he made us laugh.

During 18 months, Edmund and Tommy worked hard to create a game with that content :
– 150 levels of pure platform in two version “light” and “dark” (do the math!)
– good old bosses !
– 15 unlockable characters with unique moves
– and Teh Internets, a section that allows Team Meat to add more free content to the game. Not to mention a level editor will be available with the PC version and players will be able to share levels.

Ok, you probably think we are a little bit too excited about this game.
Well, it seems we are not alone : tons of positive reviews !

But nobody forces you to buy SMB t-shirts and imitate Edmund and Tommy.

Seasons : visibility test (frustum culling)

Hi everybody!

Last week I tried to make rendering code optimisation in order to speed up the frametime.

>> Context

Until now, I didn’t bother too much about optimising stuff; some optimisation techniques were implemented but were very somewhat buggy.
The main reason for such bugged code is that we switched from pure 2D/orthographic to 3D/perspective way of thinking the rendering and the game.

>> Frustum

The main thing to do when optimizing rendering is trying to render only what will be visible on screen. It seems logical but it’s not automatically done by a graphic card… you have to do it by yourself on CPU side and only send minimum stuff to the drawing. The process is called culling.

To achieve such an optimisation, you can rely on the frustum. Frustum is a truncated pyramid shape which defines what the camera will actually project on screen. Objects partially or entirely contained in the frustum will be potentially visible on screen (potentially because some other objects may occlude other ones).

Camera frustum

Continue Reading

Older Posts