Adventures in Graphics Programming

This semester, I’m working in a team of 5 to make a game using C++ and DirectX for my Graphics Programming class and I’m terrified.  Yeah, maybe that wasn’t the emotion you were expecting, but I can’t be the only person in the class who is a bit anxious about this.  But it’s a good kind of anxious.  Graphics programming is liberating.  There’s so much control, I just have to overcome the initial shock of having nothing to really start with.  This is definitely going to be an adventure.

Oh yeah, the game.  It doesn’t have a title yet, so we’re calling it “Two People Throwing Stuff at Each Other,” or TPTSAEO.  It just rolls off the tongue, right?  It’s a side-scrolling Smash Bros-like fighting game in which players attack using only throwing weapons.  This includes stuff like daggers, tomahawks, javelins, and even shuriken.  Right now, we’re thinking of having it be a “one hit kill” style of game like Nidhogg.  Each weapon will have a unique feel and throwing style, and the weapons will persist indefinitely.  If your opponent misses, you can grab his weapon and throw it back.  Aesthetically, the stages will be modeled in 3d, but the characters and weapons will be 2d sprites.

throwing weapons

Stuff like this…

My role on the team is lighting.  I’ll be working with one other member to write custom shaders for the game.  I’m looking into SpriteLamp for making 2d normal maps.  The 3d parts will be simple.  We’re not trying to be too fancy with that stuff.  I personally would like to push for a Tron/Netrunner aesthetic and keep things abstract.  The 2d parts will really shine (hopefully).  I’m planning for inverted silhouettes and maybe some animated static to act as blood.

My first goal is to get a rough, basic 2d lighting demo using some of the professor’s starter code.  Once I get that done, it should be easier to do fancy tricks or maybe even deferred shading.  There’s a lot I don’t know, so hopefully I can rely on the power of the internet to lead me to smart people who have done this kind of stuff before.

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