Mark Skyzoid's Game Development Blog

Two players, shooting and tweaks.

Today I have spent majority of the time working on implementing the controls for both Players. In order to do so, I had to fix some issues regarding the code that controls that detection of player by AI entities. Now both players can be detected and one target at time will be selected.

I have also worked on the camera. Now, the camera follows both players and smoothly adjusts its position in order to keep them on screen. So, as the distance between the players increases so does the distance of the camera from them.

Another feature I have added is the ability of players to shoot lasers. Now you can go around the level and shoot hundreds of bullets at the same time. I will have to implement a health system for enemies and for the players, but I will defer this task to another day.

Moreover, at the end of the working day, I had much fun adding some features to improve the overall fun of the game. I have tweaked things like bullet speed, I have added some placeholder shooting sounds, I have written some code to have random shooting inaccuracy, so each bullet will have a slightly different spawning position, and finally I have added some camera shake when the players shoot in order to improve the feedback to the user.

Overall, it has been a very productive day and I am quite glad of the progress we are making on this game.

Proceedings @ Teesside University

Hello again followers of this(unknown) blog!

I’m still alive and posting, in this boring moment 🙂

My studies at the University of Teesside are proceeding very well(I must say that!) 🙂

I completed my first 2 assessments and soon I will be assessed again(yeah hard times for me)…

The first assessment was a C++ programming test. I must say it was easy(at least for me), but the time was too short! I left the last question almost completely blank(and it was a design + implementation of the fibonacci’s series: easy stuff) and this fact made me lost 10 marks(moments when you think about suicide)…otherwise the test would have been almost perfect. So, timing was the biggest difficulty, also considered that the most of students didn’t know anything about programming before starting the course…the questions were about functions, arrays, functions + arrays, some std lib and also some “human compiling” :p…basic stuff…but I think that many people found it hard…it could have been a little easier…

The other assessment was a maths test. Now, we are studying mainly 3d math and this test was about the first unit of the module: vectors. So we had vector addition, subtraction, multiplication with scalars, dot product, cross product…and also parametric forms of straight lines…Now you would think it could be a bit scary…but actually I was a bit disappointed with this test, mainly because it was too simple…no problem solving skills were required and it was only about doing exercises mechanically…I want see everyone dealing with computer graphics problems next year…

Anyway, the material provided by lecturers is quite good and, so, it’s only a matter of private study and asking yourself questions…and a lot of trial and error 😀

Now, my next assessment will be a short presentation comparing 2 game engines: Unreal Engine and one of our choice…I think I’ll for Uningine(also because the names are similiar :p)…but I don’t really have no clue about making a poster(one power point slide) comparing the two technologies…so any help is aprecieted 😛

Also, I went to the career fair held @ the uni and I met representatives from Eutechnyx and Jagex Game Studio(and also I joined their recruitment programmes :D)…

To conclude, I can’t complain about the uni which is a lot exciting, but I am still looking forward next year(3d graphics programming :sbav: )

Stay tuned for my next post! see ya!

Starting Computer Games Programming @ The University of Teesside

I recently started studying Computer Games Programming at the Teesside University, and I’ve just got through the first teaching week!

I think I’ll be able to make an overview of the whole thing…

Starting with the lecturers, I think they are by far the best lecturers around…Some of them comes directly from the Game Industry(Keith Ditchburn, the course leader, is an example of this), so I think the quality of teaching is, well, professional-oriented(which is good), and I think the university has good links with the Game Industry, which is the damn-good thing I was looking for!

It’s hard to get in the Industry, but well, with this kind of education and a personal hard(and I say HARD) work it’s really possible. Also Teesside has the Skillset accreditation for its Computer Games Programming Course, and this is by far a good thing. Skillset accreditation means that the course offers a real good preparation to the real working life, and this is a plus on your CV, trust me.

Talking about the modules we are going to study on the first year, well, I can start talking about the Programming Module: it’s about programming in C++. Nothing more. Programming in C++, with a focus on good programming habits, data structures, algorithms and OOP. Well, this is by far the best programming module I have ever seen. You have to use(almost every time) C++ when working in the Industry, so don’t lose your time with any other language, learn C++ and everything else will come natural to you.

Another module we are studying is System Design and it’s about software engineering, or generally speaking, it’s about the software life cycle. So we are going to learn UML, and all good software development practices. I think we are going to study also some business aspect, but I am not sure about this. This module is shared with other courses(Computer Science, Computing) due to its generic nature.

Now comes the Maths 😀 We are also studying maths, of course…and which kind of maths? 3D Maths mainly, but also discrete maths and calculus! That sounds good, and that’s good believe me…The lecturer is a very funny person, and I think he can make is lectures quite interesting, because of his personality 🙂 I am really happy with this, ’cause I think maths is essential to game development, and if you want to work in the industry you have to have a strong understanding of it…just go check any companies’s websites and u will see “Strong 3D Maths skills” as requirements 🙂

The other 2 modules I am going to talk about are Games Middleware and Games Technology. I had the first lectures of these today.

Games Middleware is about using a professional Game Engine to make a game…We are going to use Unreal Engine 3(UDK which is free, but it’s almost the same). This sounds real funny because we can work on a real 3D game, using industry-standard development tools! And this goes directly in to your portfolio! Also I think it’s very funny implementing gameplay mechanics and AI, without having worries to develop a game engine by yourself!

Games Technology is mostly about the hardware used for gaming, from PCs to Consoles…I think I’ll find it interesting too! But I have already studied almost everything about this! However, I am interested in see how it all applies to gaming!

We also have a lot of cool facilities, from gaming lounge(where you can freely play games for pc, ps3, xbox, ecc), to games studios equipped with SDKs for consoles(GPX32 and, soon, PS3\PSP), to the library open from 8 am ’till midnight!

I think I am going to have a lot of fun here and also a great learning period! Stay tuned to receive more infos about my adventures! 😄

I’ll leave you with a demential game prototype I am making! Have Fun!

Play Pigeon War! (Space to shoot)

Released “I Was Throwing Bubbles To The Sky”!!

Hello friends,

I’ve just released my game entry for the experimental gameplay project!

You can found it here:

gimme some feedback!

Mark Skyzoid

I Was Throwing Bubbles To The Sky[Experimental Gameplay Project]

Hello everyone!

I’m here to announce my entry for Experimental Gameplay Project of August!

The theme is: ZERO BUTTONS…so game must be played without the use of any button!

The game I’m creating(It’s almost finished) is called “I Was Throwing Bubbles To the Sky…”!

Here are some screenshots:

The Game's Title

The Title Screen


An in-game screenshot!

I’ll publish it ASAP so you can give it a try!

Stay Tuned!

Mark Skyzoid


I’ve came back on this blog! 😀

Some days ago I heard of an event here in italy, LudiComix, so I decided to show a game there.

I picked up an old idea of mine: Comet

Comet's Logo

Logo of Comet

I made some video of the first gameplay prototypes:

First Gameplay Video

Another video with more Features

I’ll explain you the idea of the game in other posts in this blog, so…


Jumping Frank

Some days ago while havin’ a look at Wikipedia, I went by chance on Wikipedia’s page for Dangerous Dave, an old platform game made by John Romero. At this page I found a link to John Romero’s site…I went on his site and while lookin’ at his personal blog posts, I found a little C library made by him wich as functions to display and move ASCII Characters in a console window! What a joy for me!

I downloaded it immediatly and start experimenting…from these experimentations was born “Jumping Frank”, an ASCII Platform Game!

Jumping Frank

Jumping Frank

By now it’s in early development state but I’m developing it with the help of Will Miller, a professional game developer, and Vijesh, another very good developer!

I’ll write bout Jumping Frank’s updates so STAY TUNED!