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  Scripty Update 11:58 AM -- Tue September 27, 2022  

It's been quiet on the Broken Build Simulator front for a while... So here's your update!

First off, I was on a trip for a week. My first flight since March 2020! Which means of course, without a moment's doubt, that I spent the two weeks following that sick. I thought it wasn't covid (I took MANY tests), but now afterwards, having spent weeks feeling absolutely exhausted for no reason, I am suspicious indeed. I guess it doesn't much matter which it was at this point, but it fuels my desire to never leave my house again which was already at a high 90+% level.

So I have been slow for a while due to that situation. But also, the scripting process! As I implemented scripting for different elements of the game, I just couldn't stop. First it was the skills and abilities, then heroes. Since my illness though, I've added scripting for the game modes, weapons, enemies, bullets, and at this point only buffs remain and I'm going to do them too. Once that's done, I think it's all scripted! The game is currently non-runnable of course, and it has taken many steps backwards over these few weeks, but we're on the uphill climb of that quagmire. Once we're out of it, my theory is that adding new things will be a breeze. I guess we shall see if that's true. It's not going to be like Starcraft where you can make entirely different games in it, as the core mechanics will always be the same, but you'll be able to do a lot with those mechanics.

I have no fancy artwork or videos to show you because the game is not functional. If you're a scripty programmy designy person, maybe you'd enjoy this 'screenshot' of the script for the bullets that the Infestor weapon shoots. I'm not actually sure this script works, because the game hasn't been running since I wrote it, but it's the general idea at least. Most bullets are a lot simpler - this one does some wacky stuff.

	8,8,	; width and height
	3,3,	; visheight, visOffY
	16,16,	; sprite size
	Img_Bullets, ; sprite sheet
	0,0,	; top-left of sprites
	TeamGood,	; team
	BehaviorProjectile,	; basic behavior, just zooms forward and can hit enemies
	3,40,	; base damage and speed
	120	; base range

AnimDef: Attack1(6,1,0 7,1,0)


	; me->speed = weaponflightspeed-weaponflightspeed*(timer/weaponrange)
	; we're slowing down over the course of our time (timer counts up from 0 to weaponrange)
	; accuracy of 100 has no randomizing, accuracy of 0 randomizes by 1 degree per frame

	; special2 is the dot damage, special1 is the dot duration

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  Broken Build Simulator Coming 06:08 PM -- Thu September 8, 2022  

I just got back from a trip to visit family and to nobody's surprise, I am now sick (not covid, according to my first test anyway...). So I am going to just lazily toss out this new game announcement from my quarantine chamber rather than, you know, putting in any effort:

Yay! I've been really enjoying these types of games lately, many of which I have bought just for research purposes, but they always suck me in. So here comes mine! Check out the Steam listing for a little more info, but not too much yet, it's still early.

The title artwork was painted by a friend of mine named Dall-E. You can kind of tell it's AI art, it has some of those little oddities, but I liked the concept and the overall feel. I might consider it a base for redoing, but hey, it's kinda cool as is. Hey, I am gonna be less lazy and take you on a Dall-E journey! What you do is type in any text prompt, and Dall-E will give you 4 images in return. You can do it again for 4 other images, or ask for variations on one of the images you got, or just try a whole new prompt. I'm just gonna show you one image from each set of 4 (and I'm skipping some, I went through a lot of prompts!).
I started out just seeing what Dall-E thought, by asking for the exact title: "broken build simulator, digital art style" (Asking for 'digital art style' tends to give you really nice bright colorful images). In retrospect, I'm not at all sure what it was thinking.
So I tried "enormous broken machine, sci-fi, digital art style", which gave all pretty cool results. I really liked this one. A title image for this game is tricky because there is no one real 'thing' to show - there is no main character or big badguy or special location. It's just a melange of insanity. So I'm going more for something conceptual. I did some tests with actually using this image and I did like it.
I liked it so much in fact that I asked for variations on it, and this was my favorite of those, but didn't really want to use it.
I wanted to try other directions, so this is "a watercolor painting of an enormous broken robot". It's not bad at all, but not really the vibe of the artwork in the game.
After having converted some into the game's palette, and greatly shrinking them down (the game has a 256 pixel vertical resolution), I thought something that is just sort of vague shapes might be the way to go, hence "an impressionist oil painting of an enormous broken robot with dark colors".
To better match the style, I thought I'd try Synthwave (I hadn't heard that style before, but Dall-E tips suggested it. It's basically Miami Vice/Cyberpunk/Rad Racer/1980's style). So this is "a synthwave picture of an enormous broken robot with dark colors", and incidentally, this (very cool) image was one of the alternate options of the image I actually used, which you can see on the steam page. So this prompt gave me results. I also tried making variations of the one I used, but I'm not even going to show them, they're awful.
After getting awful variations, I thought I'd try describing the one I liked and see if it could make others along those lines, with "monochromatic synthwave art of a robot shattering through glass". The results were all kind of pencil/ink type art, not very synthwave at all, and this one has a little too much Hitler to it.
I didn't really want to go with the big mech robot style, since that's not a part of this game. I was looking more for a general machine, so I asked for "monochromatic purple synthwave art of a broken machine smashing through a window". These were an interesting way to go, but I decided against them. All of them had this kind of Office Space style, like employees are shoving the copier out the window.
I wanted to lean into the actual gameplay of the game, so I tried "a broken machine firing hundreds of missiles in anime style" (I thought anime would give me some nice colorful cartoons - I was picturing something like Robotech where dozens of missiles swarm around each other). It really came out more like manga, just pen sketches. This was the most colorful one, looks like a manga cover. But where are the missiles?
"a broken machine firing hundreds of missiles, digital art style" gave better results. This picture feels like the game - stacking tons of guns on until you're totally overpowered. I really liked this image, but downscaled and color-reduced, it was not very workable.
Still hoping to get a sky full of swirling missiles, I asked for "many missiles launching, digital art style", and that did not give me what I wanted. One thing I find kind of amusing is that (in all 4 options it gave me) it didn't make all the missiles the same. That would make the most sense as well as being simpler. But you can't predict AI and it's probably better at organic images.
My last-ditch effort was "many missiles launching from a destroyed citadel, digital art style". It's alright, but not what I needed.
This is unrelated to the game, but it's my favorite response to "a donkey wearing a sombrero, and a cowboy is riding the donkey. They are in atlantis."
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