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What exactly was all this? Answers here!


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Some of you may remember that at some point, me and Rhaps were working on some secret project, which we had a "???" forum for.

For some reason, when I work with Rhaps, I end up working endlessly every day and this project was no different. We were going new places and fast and we couldn't wait to show off to you what we had as soon as possible.

Unfortunately, this place seems to have a curse and the whole thing came to a stop as always, making you wait for an eternty for any new info on anything.

Now recently, Rhaps has been active on the forums as some of you may know, so me and him thought it'd be nice to finally at least let you know what we were doing.

This is where we'll finally announce what all the ??? stuff was supposed to be.

We were working on a completely new game.

post-15-0-88762600-1326460688_thumb.png

The .hack inspired the world here had been like a small job of mine for the past years, but it got more and more annoying to maintain and pushing the project forward was more and more of a pain because of the choice of development tools. (Those of you that have tried the map maker know how auful that was, but that only makes up a fraction of the troubles of developing it.) That plus I was planning to make it into an original idea, just based on .hack, instead of just a plain, old, boring copy.

Now, the idea of taking all those ideas I'd had, putting them into something new, with someone that could do the graphical side of things (very) well (which not having for a long time when working on the the world was one of the major drawbacks) and doing it all in a good development environment, with all the experience I'd gained from the world was an idea I liked. I knew these things take AGES to develop, but none the less, we got to work.

It was still going to be MMO style, but we decided it'd be nice to instead of making some tile sheets (The maps in 2D games are generally made by repeatedly placing select tiles together, over and over to make up the map, like those that have tried the the world map maker know), to instead make the maps all in a graphics editor, like photoshop, leaving all details to the graphical artist, Rhaps, and letting him freely draw what he wanted without the restriction of tile sets.

So I got to work making a system that loaded in chunks of maps around the character, so you'd always have the map around the player on screen loaded in, from data containing the images Rhaps would create for the game world. This meant we didn't have to load in areas all in one go and have the game world split up into set areas, but that the world could be completely seemless. You could go where you want and it'd all load on the fly with no loading times. No suddenly hitting the edge of the screen. No need to load the entire map again because of going in/out of buildings etc.

I got the start of that system working well-ish while Rhaps was working on getting a graphical style down I believe.

We also thought the best idea to share our progress was through a simple site, so Rhaps started on the graphics for that too.

post-15-0-70390100-1326462032_thumb.png

We of course were also talking about the setting of the game and the world it'd take place in, the story, the races and classes and all sorts of things like that and started to make a design document containing all of that info.

Looking back on all the (rather limited) data we've managed to get to present this to you really brings back memories of how we were really looking forward to making this game for you to all enjoy. It really is a shame nothing came of it :(

Those interested in more details can view the basic design document here and the code design document here. (Be warned that they are very basic and left half done, or rather 0.1% done to be more exact.)

Here's also an example of the engine (basic game system that the entire game will run on) I had going.

Move with arrow keys and add/remove collision points with left/right mouse click.

You will need the XNA runtime stuff/.Net Framework 2, or 3 I think to run it.

post-15-0-27841200-1326460911_thumb.png

I think Rhaps will be around to comment too at some point and if you have any questions or anything, ask away :P

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Dang! I remember that site layout. XD I remember Rhaps asking me to do the site-work, definitely..

I also remember the test engine and how interesting it was. Shame that this project never took off, but oh well.. It seems us three, Rhaps, you, and me, all had our fair share of insanity coming from this place based on a common goal. This reminds me of when Cerilious and I were working tirelessly on what was supposed to be the custom sprites for TheWorld without you or the rest of the team. xD I guess now would be a proper time to release them, but I have to leave for class. >_< (will post later)

Oh, well.. maybe someone will pick up the idea and take it somewhere. Who knows.

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http://www.multiupload.com/34IRATR9XJ

This is what's in the text file contained in the archive(explains backstory and whatnot):

/*

RELEASE : The World -Game Asset Enhancement Project-

INSTRUCTED BY : Jonathan "gm112" Basniak, Lukas "Cerilious"

DATE : Initialized October 10th, 2009

Public Release: January 13th, 2012

COPYRIGHT : Public Domain

*/

PURPOSE

The following document contains the surviving design documents for project [[TheWorld]]. What's missing are the game engine code, coding design documents, gameplay design documents, and possibly more. Please excuse the incompletedness of the following data.

BACKSTORY

Project [[TheWorld]] was to undergo an overhaul via game engine to game assets through the combined efforts of Rhapsodiac and Hawthorneluke. This project was the precursor to what would become "Dream Eternal", the initative to create a custom MMO from ground up, using gained experience and inspiration from the dotHack and Tales of.. series. As the project was kept under wraps, the community began growing impaitient and hopeless that the team were indeed, competent. This lead to the creation of the Game Asset Enhancement Project[GAEP], lead by gm112 and Cerilious.

Like Dream Eternal, the GAEP was kept a secret in an attempt to surprise the community with a special treat. However, unlike Dream Eternal, GAEP was kept secret from even the internal team, or at least, the specific details behind what it was for and what was going to be given.

A new art standard was constructed with various concept art sprites, an initial plan as to how to programmically integrate the new character custmoization system in. Initial plans in regards to the engine were to base off of Express Cat revision 6 and to fork off the code, but plans eventually shifted to building a custom engine from ground up as the level of modification needed to be done to Express Cat for the requirements of GAEP were far too great and thus, rendered too time consuming to do.

By the end of December 2009, there had been a custom game engine which was functional enough to start incorporating game-specific logic. From what I remember, the game engine had capabilities of multithreading, custom texture compression algorithm that utilized shaders to create a buffer for holding textures up to the size of 2500x2500 with variable padding in an effort to lower API calls, packet shuffling for networking, and probably more but alas, the information has been forgotten. Currently, no copy of the source code or binary distribution of said work has been recovered at the current time of this writing.

After 3 full months of development, the project fell apart into obscurity in January of 2010, never to see the light of day until now. As a result of the incompletedness, I encourage you to please avoid not consider the circumstances this project was developed in before making any judgement calls. If the project were destined to succeed, a June 2010 release would've been imminent.

Please enjoy these lost gems of TheWorld. If you decide to use this work, I encourage you to properly cite the author, Cerilious, but it is not a requirement.

FILE INFOMRATION

\IMAGES -------- Contents contain various design documents + concept sprites

\files ------- Contains files taken from the google wave

Spriting Document_revision#.png -- Three revisions of the Spriting Document were formulated. This image contained documentation in regards to the standards that were to be the guidelines for anyone part of the art team. During the project's lifetime, only Cerilious was part of the art team. This document was devised by both Gm112 and Cerilious through lengthy discussions.

Comparison.png ----- Concept tiles created in an effort to experiment with reusing existing resources, but with modifications to suit our needs. While we never intended on using those tiles, it was just to demonstrate the capabilities.

The rest ----- Should be straight forward and obvious.

I've compressed this as a .tar.gz file.. so, please, use winRAR or 7zip to decompress. I used multiploder to get this document spread acorss different hosts.. I would very much appreciated if this said file were mirrored elsewhere. And yes, it has a relation to this project.. this gets explained in the file ^^.

EDIT: Luke, do I have permission to release the old map files? I've found an archive containing a bunch of them. I even still have the map uploader / encryption utilities. o_O

Edited by gm112
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By all means if anyone has any questions feel free to ask. Luke did a great job of summarizing everything so I don't really have too much to add.

One thing that people cannot underestimate is the amount of work required to go into something like this. A 3 man cell like we had working on it requires an absolutely ungodly amount of hours to even get to the point that we were at.

Intermitent to our work we all have personal lives as well, and they can be even MORE busy and crazy than the amount of hours required for work to be put in. What came of this was a great experience for us, and at the very least a neat little story, and a few documents for you guys. I can say that working with Luke and GM is always a pleasure, and despite this project not quite getting off the ground, it was still a lot of fun working on it, and really finding a construction process that worked and worked well.

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Well said lol

I'm currently in the first year of a computer science course at university, and there was a programming competition with actual cash prizes from 1st (~$3000) to 8th place, plus extras and we had about two months to do it. The amount of people that thought they could complete what was needed in time, starting just a few days before the deadline, or even the night before is insane.

Thinking about making what you want to do and how in your mind it all seems solid and that you just need to "write it down" compared to how much time that takes in reality is like 1:1000. It literally always takes about 1000 times as long, at least, compared to what you think it should take at first. The only way to comprehend it is to undertake a big-ish project from start to end (or until you give up).

But like Rhaps said, you do get an extreme amount of experience and good memories from it all, so in no way is any of this time felt as wasted! :D

In fact I'm sure it's needed to finally succeed with big projects in the future. (Thanks to this I knew I had to plan my time well and start asap, working as much as possible to make what I needed to do to win that competition at my university.)

gm112: of course you have permission ^^

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By all means if anyone has any questions feel free to ask. Luke did a great job of summarizing everything so I don't really have too much to add.

One thing that people cannot underestimate is the amount of work required to go into something like this. A 3 man cell like we had working on it requires an absolutely ungodly amount of hours to even get to the point that we were at.

Intermitent to our work we all have personal lives as well, and they can be even MORE busy and crazy than the amount of hours required for work to be put in. What came of this was a great experience for us, and at the very least a neat little story, and a few documents for you guys. I can say that working with Luke and GM is always a pleasure, and despite this project not quite getting off the ground, it was still a lot of fun working on it, and really finding a construction process that worked and worked well.

Yeah, AFAIK that's pretty much everything in regards to the Dream Eternal project from what I know. o_O I the tireless hours you two put into Dream Eternal which was amazing, to say the least. But yeah, quality over quantity... that rule certainly applies to us. ;)

What's funny was, we were all going through critical / trying times in our lives and now that we're established, we've long since went onto other feats. Or at least, I know I did... somewhat, ;p

I enjoyed working with both you and Luke, Rhaps. Luke was always kind and listened in on opinions, you worked with my visual-retardedness to make things work. It was definitely the one time in my experience where arts and science worked as one. The new theme made for the BBS was the last testament to that, for now, or unless we group together to go forward with a new thing. I totally agree with your reflection back upon with what all had happened... great experiences occurred, shame that it waited so long to come to light. But even then, I will always reflect back on this experience(and there are numerous moments where I reference things from this project) possibly for the rest of my life, or maybe not... who knows. Space is a big thing.

Well said lol

I'm currently in the first year of a computer science course at university, and there was a programming competition with actual cash prizes from 1st (~$3000) to 8th place, plus extras and we had about two months to do it. The amount of people that thought they could complete what was needed in time, starting just a few days before the deadline, or even the night before is insane.

Thinking about making what you want to do and how in your mind it all seems solid and that you just need to "write it down" compared to how much time that takes in reality is like 1:1000. It literally always takes about 1000 times as long, at least, compared to what you think it should take at first. The only way to comprehend it is to undertake a big-ish project from start to end (or until you give up).

But like Rhaps said, you do get an extreme amount of experience and good memories from it all, so in no way is any of this time felt as wasted! :D

In fact I'm sure it's needed to finally succeed with big projects in the future. (Thanks to this I knew I had to plan my time well and start asap, working as much as possible to make what I needed to do to win that competition at my university.)

gm112: of course you have permission ^^

Lhuke and I are both in our first year of computer science, it seems. ;) I think it's pretty epic that you managed to win that competition. It's like you are truly, Luke Skywalker... and I am your father, Luke. It was kinda funny watching your reaction though. XD

@Hawthorneluke: So you allow me, so shall it be.

To those BBS members who still visit this site, I give you the source to many of the long, lost map files! I cannot guarantee that these work are in sane condition.. please, keep this in mind. Again, the package is compressed in tar, so use WinRAR or 7zip to decompress if you're on Windows.

http://www.multiupload.com/XP6XO35TG0

So, yeah. Enjoy! Many lost gems in there.. Though, I believe there's more, but my archive's currently scattered everywhere.

Luke, you should totally consider releasing the .gmk for TheWorld and see if youknowwhowouldsuddenlyrisefromthedeadwithanewgameclientifyaknowwhatimeanwinkwink

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wow. to see how much work went into this project we never even heard of until now. it's pretty impressive what was done.

i am disappointed i couldn't see it until it was too late D:

Trust me, this is only the tip of the iceberg. I have a lot of stuff that not even Luke saw that I lost.

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