Project Spikes – Laser Lovin’

LASERS.

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Everyone loves lasers.

*Ahem*, now that I’ve got your attention, this update features laser turrets. Lasers will be used to activate laser receivers, which then triggers moving platforms and other events. The turrets themselves are a half-finished model currently, without a proper texture, which will come later on. The laser itself is pretty much done though – it looks pretty attractive, and it subtly gets thicker and thinner over time so it’s not just a boring, static beam. The laser beam has the ability to reflect off special surfaces, but currently there aren’t any of those in the tutorial level – they’ll come next update. The next update will also feature aggressive versions that try to kill you, and they’ll have red lasers to help distinguish between these lasers, and the hostile ones.

Improvements over last update

Firstly, I’ve made an actual ladder model, rather than the placeholder image I took 20 seconds to make in GIMP. The model uses a grey material with a specular shader, so it’ll look shinier than other stuff in the level. It’s distinctive enough so that you’ll recognise it as a ladder, but it doesn’t look over the top either.

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Yup, ladders in pipes. Because why not.

Two (or maybe three?) things you’ll notice in the screenshot: this ladder is inside a pipe, pipes now have extra grey bits in their model, and you may also notice the shadow fidelity is much higher in this image than during gameplay from the previous update. The grey bits are there to break up the monotony while travelling through pipes, adding a more interesting view and also making the pipes look more solid. While adding pipes, I thought it would be cool to be able to climb up them, hence pipe-ladders. And the shadow fidelity is actually a quirk of how Unity creates shadows – before, the shadow render distance was massive, higher than the size of the level, which actually decreases their quality. Now I’ve made it so that shadows stop rendering after 200m (which can be decreased in the options menu), and the shadows look much better.

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I’ve done the old switcheroo on parts of the level.

The layout of the level has changed a bit to accommodate the extra section with the lasers. There is a large section in the centre that has been moved, so the level is a bit more like a circuit.

The button used for taking screenshots is now configurable in the startup menu, and by default you can now press F5 in addition to F to take a screenshot. You can now also press F4 to toggle the HUD (the user interface, as well as the gun), making it easier to take screenshots, such as the ones above. You can configure this key in the startup settings, too.

So, you wanna play? Well, you can do over at Indie DB! You’ll be able to find the game on the Downloads page, unless it hasn’t finished uploading, or they haven’t authorised the update yet. If you have any comments, ideas, complaints or death threats, you can share them either on this blog, the Indie DB page for the game, or on the Indie DB forum for this game. Have fun playing!

-Daniel

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