Dev Diary: Beam me up, Gandalf!

Well, great, I miss out on an easy post title about Star Wars Day by one day. I won’t let that stop me! This week: evil AI is complete!

Jenny has completed her first pass of what she describes as “evil AI”. They are now able to anticipate curved throws, dive when required and throw the disc at the position most likely to score. AI is now at the point where they are essentially unbeatable in a singles match, and only lose points in doubles by hitting each other with the disc. Jenny’s next task is to start adding human-like flaws to the AI so that they become an enjoyable opponent, as opposed to a constant reminder of humanity’s inevitable defeat at the hands of our machine overlords.

We’ve begun to think about how we can improve the feel and aesthetic of the game through more dynamic use of the stand-in models we have and animating the camera. I’ve particularly enjoyed this talk by Jan Willem Nijman on “Game Feel” and this video in Mark Brown’s Game Maker’s Toolkit. In the title video, you can see us just beginning to toy with the idea of some screen shake and bending the shape of the disc as it get’s faster.

The rest of our week was spent bug fixing, project restructuring and optimising, which unfortunately does not make for pretty pictures or fancy videos. See you next week!

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