OK, since my last entry, I’ve been focusing on my latest project, which is an interactive visual narrative / storybook / game for the iOS (iPad). I’m currently using Epic’s UDK and have had some good results (along with some headaches).

In this video, using the January UDK build, I’m showcasing some of the core gameplay mechanics / features that will be in the app:

  • 30 FPS framerate on iPad first gen device and iPod Touch 4th gen device
  • non-rotating third person / side-scrolling camera
  • one touch finger gameplay
  • successful integration of various skeletal meshes and animations
  • extras like device graphics and starting video

Also, for fun, I wanted to test Unreal’s graphic capabilities on the iPad first gen device using higher res, animated, skeletal meshes with normal maps, spec maps, and dynamic lighting effects.

The results are pretty impressive. My Nemean monster character, as shown in the video, is optimized to being under 3000 polys (tris), just over 1500 vert count, has 1024 x 1024 px res diffuse, normal and spec maps, and still looks almost similar to the original, un-optimized model. The big surprise is that I managed a steady 45 FPS framerate when uncapped with the features enabled and all three skeletal meshes on screen. I will show stats in a later video.

So far, this is a solo project, meaning I’m doing everything: design, writing, art, audio, coding, asset and file management; somewhat fortunate for me, due to my background and nature of wanting to learn and do as much as I possibly can, I have had the opportunities necessary to help develop some level of executable skills in those areas.

The main character of this story is Gen Gen, a little tortoise character that I designed while I was in school, mostly for use in my 2D animation projects. The song in the video is what I have so far as a main theme song and is composed entirely in GarageBand with the iPad (from the video). I will be working on the background, stories, and plot later, first things first… and oh yeah, there most likely won’t be any hi-res Infinity Blade-style monsters in the finished product either.

Gotta choose your battles, and when against Time, maybe some sacrifices (compromises when available).

More updates to come as my progress continues.

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