Alien Blitz 3d: new weapon screen, options, timer, dyslexic font, control camera with gamepad

New weapon screen

The weapon screen has been changed, it is now quicker to equip and upgrade weapons

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Options

Options have been changed from xml file to json file, this is much easier to read/write serialize/unserialize with LibGdx.

All options will be lost with next update, which does not really matter as this is very easy to re-set them.

And this change will allow me to add a lot more easily a lot of small options that I don’t want to include in the UI (advanced stuff, speed running and such).

 

Timer

Timer has been improved, I was wondering if I should use a real time timer or a engine cycle count timer, basically the timing difference is on how they handle micro-lags.

Let’s say that at some point the computer lags for some reason (avast wake up and slows down everything a bit for a few seconds for example) and make the game slow down. Real time timer will include this lag but not engine timer. Engine time is good for speed running I think but then some cheaters could exploit that to play in “slow motion”.

As I’m not really sure which timer to use I will use both, all times will be saved in both formats. But only one timer will appear on screen, I think it will be selectable in the config file, but for the default option I might ask some speed runners what they think about it.

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By default time will not be visible on screen, player will have to change the config file. In this screen shot you can see what will happen when timers are visible (bottom left corner). The top timer is the level timer, the bottom one is the global timer.

Level timer

Level timer starts after level loading, and is stopped at the end of the level. It will continue when in the in-game menu, but not when the window looses focus or the pause key is pressed.

It will replace current timer for best time, and will be saved along global timer split.

Global timer

Global timer starts when the player first click the Play button, it is saved when exiting game. If the player restarts the game this timer will restart immediately when main menu is visible.

It will automatically save times (split) in a file at different point in the game:

  • When a level is started
  • When a level is won, along with level timer, level name, difficulty and completion percentage
  • When a level is lost

It is easy to get the total completion time just by looking at the global time at the end of last level.

These splits are visible in the statistics window (by clicking the mecca avatar on the main screen, and also in the options)

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Auto split (external program)

I tried to see if it was possible to send a command to WSplit to tell it to split, but couldn’t find one. So I’ve decided to add the possibility to simulate a key press when ending a level. It will be available only by editing config file.

It means that if you use WSplit or any other program and have one split per level then the game can automatically split for you.

 

Dyslexic font

I found the OpenDyslexic font project some time ago, I don’t have dyslexia myself so I don’t know if this font can really help people with dyslexia, but as it doesn’t cost me too much to add this as an option I’ve decided to give it a try.

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It doesn’t seem to help so much to me, but I can’t say. It’s not much but I hope it can help people with dyslexia. It will be available in the advanced options.

 

Control camera with gamepad

It is now possible to move camera using the second analog stick on your controller (if any), it will act exactly as right clicking with your mouse.

It will only be available on PC as accelerometer is used on mobile to move camera.

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