Monday, May 22, 2017

Blobby Volley 2.0.5

Blobby Volley is getting closer and closer to the final release. In version 2.0.5 I did the following:
  • I improved the AI by using normal distribution random values for errors instead of uniform distribution random values. Thanks to the changes the AI is more human-like.
  • I added Firebase tracking, so I can get more gameplay statistics and adjust the parameters like the difficulty.
  • I fixed the size of point counters, because it was incorrect on some resolutions.
  • I added a pause screen.
  • I added win and lose screens.
To give you a sneak peak, the new screens look like this:

I'm not publishing the WebGL version this time, because it doesn't work well with Firebase. You can play it on your phone and if you don't know how, see one of the previous posts.

To close up this short update, here are some stats. I worked for another 11.5h which gives a total of 71h so far. The amount of time committed to the game in this sprint was rather miserable but preparing a presentation about Unity for the local Android Developers Group consumed lots of it. I'm hoping to do better next time and work on the following: polishing the AI, adding a menu system and ads.

Now go play the game and see if you can experience the win screen yourself.

Wednesday, May 3, 2017

Blobby Volley 2.0.4

The new beta version of Blobby Volley is out. If you're a member of the testers group and you've activated testing then you should get an automatic update from Google Play soon. Otherwise, sign up to be a tester or try the WebGL version.

What's new:

  • points
  • opponent's AI

What's coming next:
  • pausing the game
  • win and lose screens
  • more customization options (controller side, player colors, etc.)
  • ads
For more details see the Trello board.

Since the last update I've managed to squeeze in additional 22.5h of work, for a total of almost 60h. The AI was quite hard to implement. Fortunately, I already had the old code to help me with it.

What's worth mentioning is that I started using Rider instead of Monodevelop as my IDE. I can't even express how much better it is. Here are some of its features that I particularly like:
  • it auto-formats the code according to the C# standard
  • it auto-saves files, so you don't have to press cmd+s all the time
  • it compiles the code on the fly, so you don't have to do it by hand when you want to know if there are any compiler errors
  • it's integrated with version control tools, so I don't have to use Source Tree anymore
  • it has static code analysis tools that help you find compile-time errors (I've found a lot of them)
  • it has intelligent auto-completion that speeds up writing code a lot
  • it has the same shortcuts as Android Studio, so you don't have to learn new ones from scratch
  • it has a dark theme
There are probably more advantages of using Rider, but these are the main ones that come to my mind first. If you use Unity and haven't tried this editor yet, make sure you do it.

I also started using UniRx - Reactive Extensions for Unity. You can find it on the Asset Store and it's free. It's like RxJava but in C#, so if you're familiar with reactive paradigms, it'll make your code clearer and easier to write.

The game has finally reached the state in which it's actually fun to play. I'm really proud of the AI and I'm curious to find out your opinion about it. Do you think it should be easier/harder? Can you find any bugs in its behaviour? Do you have any suggestions regarding its way of playing? I'll be grateful for any feedback.

Oh, there's one more thing I forgot to mention. I'll be doing a presentation on Blobby Volley and Unity on May 11 (Thursday) as part of the Android Developers Group in Poznań. I'll be happy to see you there if you feel like coming. You can find more details on Facebook and Meetup.

Once again, have fun playing and come back for new updates in about two weeks.