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Jared Ramone Burks's blog

Capstone: Weeks 5 & 6
8:47 PM on 10.09.2013
Capstone: The Rundown of Weeks 4 and 5
8:29 PM on 10.09.2013
Capstone: Weeks 1 and 2
7:14 PM on 10.09.2013
Woflie's Big Adventure?!?
8:42 PM on 05.19.2013
D&D: Final Days
8:18 PM on 05.19.2013
Default BattleChef and Sliding Doors
10:57 PM on 03.18.2013

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Jared Ramone Burks's Profile Destructoid
Jared Ramone Burks 's blog
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I'm a 20 year old game design student on my way to the gaming industry. My main focus is design, but I also program in java and C#. Animation isn't so far out of my range either, though I've never done it before I'm willing to sit down sometime and get a grasp on it.

I don't play too many video games anymore, but when I do it's mostly League of Legends or Gears of War on the xbox 360.

Where I want to go or what I want to get out of gaming is have a job making them any way I can. Whether I'm working for a AAA company like EA or Epic or be an indie developer, if I can make video games for a living I can die happy.
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Last week I got my HUD designs approved to be finished, then took on the task of designing the Main Menu and its functions. This week I focused more on the drawings of the functionality of the main menu.

Looking at it now, its seems pretty simple but it took a bit of feedback and revising for it to get to this point. And once again, since I am no artist, I only used a photo from an existing game as a reference for a template to lay out my designs(being the text/font/graphical placement and style).

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During this point in class we have left meta teams and now are working in feature teams which are composed of designers, artists as well as programmers to complete feature of the game in small separate teams. I've assigned myself to the UI feature team where I continue to work on the player HUD and UI. I have completed the drawings of the HUD for player health, experience, points, weapons and powerUps. Most of the time during these weeks I worked on the documentation of the functionality of the HUD and minor adjustments the the drawings like scale and added examples of in game powerUps(the health pack pickup). 

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For the first week in the Capstone of Computer Simulation and Gaming(CSG) my teams Obscure Fish and Abyssive Creations combined forces to create Abysmal Ninja. They met before hand during the summer to discuss the project we'd be working on for the 2 semester long course. Extreme Exterminators, the action novel by Paul Drankiewicz, is now being created into a soon to be hit, arcade style top down shooter by our development team. We broke the group up into meta teams, Design, Art and Programmers and started setting up technical requirements of each group, getting signed in with silcat and making the road map of the game as well as user stories for poker planning. Being on the design team, I was tasked with making a list of interactive in the game, such as health on the character, character controls, PowerUps, obstacles etc. and I also made the Input Layout for a joystick and Keyboard and mouse.

I also choose to design the Player's HUD and UI and worked on what it would look like using google draw. Please note that the game used in the background was only used for a reference image. I'm only claiming the HUD in the top left corner of the screen.
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Well it has certainly been awhile since my last update. The news is, Crux has been delayed and set aside as a future project. The scope of the project was apparently too much for the group to handle. With only a few short weeks left to go in the class, we would not have had anything substantial to show off for portfolio night. SO, we settled on a simpler project, a 2.5 Dementional arcade style hack & slash sidescroller! Yes, that's a genre. Anyway, it involves a young wolf pup, the son of the Big Bad Wolf from the Fairy Tale story, Little Red Riding Hood. This pup, Wolfie, is out to get Lil Red and Grandma, and must defend himself against angry villagers.

I've been working on Creating Scenes in unity for our win screen, main menu, and game over(lose) screen. It was more complicated than I initially thought but I got the hang of it pretty quickly. I was all finished within a class period. The part that really stumped me was getting the buttons in the right position of the screen based off the screen's width and height. That took the most time, with a lot of trial and error.

I was given the responsibility of creating the layout of the level in our game. I have done 2D level design once before when I was working with ObscureFish, but my skills are still under developed in that area, so the level is really basic. Of course, my original design wouldn't be fully implemented  because of the amount of time left before we need to present our project. Either way, I got in a bit of experience working on levels. I enjoyed it while it lasted, perhaps I'll continue working in that area on my own and for future projects. With the help of Dan, we got my drawing of the level in digital form on a google doc online for everyone to see in class. And Jon turned the flat images into the 3D world we now have in our build. One thing I learned while working on level design is to not forget to SCALE my designs. Scale is one of the most important things when it comes to levels, or a game in general..I'll never forget that, and of course, to electronically map out my designs, or at least use graphing paper :P

I took the responsibility to create the health bars for our main character, Wolfie, and the boss/bosses we'll have in our game, Lil Red(Red riding hood), and Grandma. I've worked with health before in small projects on my own before, so I didn't think linking that with a GUI healthbar would be that much different...It wouldn't, but having never done it before, it could be a real pain. It took me about 3 days, doing research, and playing around with numbers in unity to figure out how to get the healthbars to look right, and function correctly(go down when player gets hit). I come in to class that next week, showing off what I had accomplished, only to be showed up by, the only true programmer we have in the group. What took me 3 days and 8 lines of code to finish, he did in a matter of minutes using only 2 lines of code! -_- Not to mention, I made 4 different variations of the same script, until I finally got it right. I'm not tripping over it though, because I learned a more efficient way of scripting, which is why I'm in school, right? Anyway, I was glad it got done. Now I just need to figure out how to make lives, *sigh*...

Everyone loves respawning, and that's why I made a respawn script! My first respawn script was written so that there was only one respawn point half way through the level once you've reached that checkpoint. After you died, you would spawn there every time.  Given the simplicity of our game, it was sufficient in serving its purpose, but with the criticism of our lovely programmer, he brought to my attention that if we were to have multiple spawn points in our scene, my code would be incomplete. He then told me what a "master programmer" would do to combat this scenario. All I had to do was make it so when the player collides with a spawn point, it sets that point as the primary point to respawn at. Thus, making the script's function more dynamic, rather than just designating one specific gameObject to serve as a spawn point. It was simple enough to understand, and just as easy to code, minus a small "if statement" argument that I over-looked.

A lot of play testing was done this week, finding bugs, and getting a feeling for difficulty and game flow as a gamer. Except for a few scaling issues, enemy behavior problems, and being able to run to either side of the level and jump off into the abyss, the game seems pretty much finished. It could use some good arcade style music though. I'll be sure to bring that to the groups attention.
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Jared Ramone Burks
8:18 PM on 05.19.2013

I learned about D&D, how to play, what it's like to be apart of a CO-OP tabletop game. Playing and Modding the Forbidden Realms helped me see how to keep things interesting, how each game plays differently. Not just changing numbers for stats, but giving different effects and cost to such feats, like a stun or you having to sacrifice a turn to perform an ability. It was different for me, having so much freedom in a game, let alone a tabletop game, playing out a scenario where I had to come up with a way to scale a giant wall. It was a good thing I was a Ghost-like Shadow character, and it was as simple as projecting myself to the top.

In the last days of this class, our group has been given the task of play-testing the other group's modded levels, characters, and campaign. Minus a few missing essential components, like speed of a character and initiative, their mod played out pretty well.

Today in my D&D class, I continued to work on setting up the Default BattleChef class to level 15 with the Crustmen race. This is what we have so far:

Male Crustman BattleChef
Level 15
Representing Jared B

Strength 16 (+3)+2+1
Constitution 14 (+2)+2
Dexterity 12 (+1)+1
Intelligence 13 (+1)
Wisdom 14 (+2)
Charisma 11 (+0)+1
Height: 5' 8"
Weight: 200lb
Skin: Red
Eyes: Sliver
Hair: Black Spikey; Peach fuzz
Maximum Hit Points: 131

Surge Value: 8
Surges / Day: 10 [includes constitution modifier]      

Size: Medium
Speed: 5 squares, Swim 7, Burrow 6
Vision: Low-Light

Initiative: 1d20 +1 = + 1 [dexterity]
Base Strength Attack: 1d20 +3 = + 3 [strength]
Base Dexterity Attack: 1d20 +1 = + 1 [dexterity]
Base Constitution Attack: 1d20 +1 = + 1 [constitution]
Base Intelligence Attack: 1d20 +2 = + 4 [intelligence]
Base Wisdom Attack: 1d20 +2 = + 2 [wisdom]
Base Charisma Attack: 1d20 +0 = + 0 [charisma]
Armor Class: 12 = 10 +  [2 Leather]
Fortitude Defense: 14 = 10 + 2 +2 [constitution]
Reflex Defense: 11 = 10 + 1 [Dex]
Will Defense: 12 = 10 + 2 [wisdom]


Acrobatics: +6 =1+ 5 [class training]
Arcana: +6 = 1+ [intelligence] +5 [class training]
Athletics: +11 = 3+ [strength] +5 [class training]
Bluff: +6 = 0 [charisma]
Diplomacy: +1 = 0 [charisma]
Dungeoneering: +2 = 2 [wisdom]
Endurance: +9 = +2 [constitution] + 5[class training]
Heal: +7 = 2+5 [wisdom]
History: +2 = +2 [intelligence]
Insight: +7 = +2 [wisdom] +5 [class training]
Intimidate: +1 = 0 [charisma]
Nature: +7 = +2 [wisdom]
Perception: +2 = 2 [wisdom]
Religion: +7 = 2 [intelligence] +5 [class training]
Stealth: +2 = 1 [dexterity]
Streetwise: +1 = 0 [charisma]
Thievery: +2 = 1 [dexterity]


 Culinary Master: You can use a spot check and if you find any plants or meat you can use it to create food.  Food weighs 1 pound.
 Boomerang Axe:  if using a throwing axe,  you may throw it at one or multiple enemies in 4 squares.  The Boomerang will return to you to performing another attack.  Initial toss- 1d6 + (weapon Modifier). Return 1d4 + (weapon Modifier)
Scavenger- Can gain health when adajacent from dead bodies D6 +Intelligence
 Food Slinger- Can send food to a player from within 4 squares.  Player getting healed uses a healing surge (or however clerics healing mechanics work)

For the Abbysive team, I have completed a new script for playing animations for SLIDING doors. This script differs from the other door opener script in that it is proximity triggered, rather than pressing a button. The door will slide open when in range, and stays open so long as you're standing in the area.