• Completely redesigned Windows-based IDE for creating your games as quickly and easily as possible. For screenshots of the IDE, have a quick browse of the beginners' tutorial.
    The IDE includes source control integration with popular tools like Sourcesafe and Perforce.
  • The Windows game engine has a hardware accelerated Direct3D graphics driver, giving extra performance for graphically-intensive games. The software graphics driver is still supported too, for running on older systems.
    Graphics filters allow you to easily scale up low-res games to run on modern systems.
  • Native Windows, Linux (x86) and Mac (currently in beta) versions of the game engine, to maximise the number of people who can play your game.
  • Powerful yet simple Java/C#-style scripting language for scripting your game. Set up the game basics with point-and-click in the editor, and then script how the game deals with various events and inputs.Autocomplete, function calltips and on-line help are all available when editing scripts.
  • The IDE has an integrated debugger to allow you to step through your script and easily trace down the source of errors.
  • In the graphics arena, choose from 256-colour, 16-bit colour and 32-bit colour - either go for that retro feel, or enjoy the benefits of no palette! It's up to you. Alpha-blended sprites are supported in 32-bit colour games.
  • Screen resolutions of 320x200, 320x240, 640x400, 640x480, 800x600 and 1024x768 are supported. Your game can be run full-screen or in a window.
  • For sound and music, you can use OGG, MP3, WAV, MOD, XM and MIDI files. Ambient location-dependant sounds, automatic footstep sounds, multiple sound channels and crossfading between music tracks are supported too.
  • Play cutscene videos using OGG Theora or standard Windows files such as AVI and WMV.
  • Easily create talkie games if you like - speech is compiled into a single data file, which you can distribute as an optional download.
  • Easy inventory management - just define all the items in the editor, then use simple Give and Lose commands during the game.
  • Almost everything is customizable, from the GUI you use to the mouse cursor graphics. Standard Sierra and Verb Coin templates are supplied, but user-made templates of other GUIs can be downloaded.
  • Create non-player characters roaming your world - they each have their own inventory and can be smoothly scaled and lit in different areas. 2, 4 and 8-directional walking animations are supported.
    Multiple player characters, such as in Maniac Mansion and Day of the Tentacle, are possible too.
  • Scrolling rooms are supported by simply importing an image larger than the screen resolution.
  • Lucasarts-style conversation system should you want to use it.
  • Translations of your game to other languages are easy to make, and can be distributed seperately as add-on packs.
  • Plugin system which allows more advanced developers to add extra functionality to AGS.
  • Compile your game into a single EXE file for distribution. Digital music and voice samples can also be compiled into seperate files to allow for optional downloads. You can of course set a custom icon for the produced EXE file.
  • The game script is compiled to byte-code when you save the game, to maximise the speed of the engine.
  • All the standard things you would expect, such as game Save and Load features, automatic pathfinding, sprite mirroring, walk-behinds, hotspots, objects, cutscenes, animations, timers, and so forth.
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Super Logo 1ex

This is the second part of my “Ghostdream in Progress” article. You can find the first part here.

The remaining contents are:
>>Story
>>Game-Play
>>Extras

>>Story
First rule: no human world connections. My characters are ghosts living in a dream world. They know about their past life experience about as much as we know about ours. They are blind kittens with no history. When I write the dialogues I imagine 5-7 years old children (only if they would knew more words to express themselves). My ghosts are in fact even younger than 5 years old and there are no adults to tell them what they must do.
I want the story to be the same way. I imagine a kid leaving his house to buy some candy in the shop, but half way this kid sees something peculiar on the other side of the street and simply forgets about the candy. Then he meets another kid, who tells him “Hey, I know a cool place! Follow me!”. And once again the kid forgets about "peculiar thing" and runs to see the “cool place” he knows nothing about. Imagine how far this kid could go if he would have an absolute freedom (the kind of freedom only ghost can have). That’s the kind of story I want to tell.

Success. “The kid’s logic” is there, but I needed to change my first rule once. Some ghosts believe in existence of scary “physicals”, who can possess the ghosts and control them for their evil deeds. Naturally, this “physical possessing a ghost” is the player, controlling protagonist. I think it’s a nice touch, worth changing the rules for. I especially like how the ghosts imagine us. The most bizarre thing about physicals to them is that physicals cannot fly diagonally. Why they believe we can fly vertically I have no idea.

>>Gameplay
At first I was planning it as a “Ghost World RPG”, but very soon I’ve realized the only part I’m really interested in is the town with all of its characters. I still believe it could work well as an RPG – some would even call it unique, despite the archaic game-play, but it seems that “Ghost World Adventure” is simply more inspiring for me to think about.

>Structure of the game
Normally there is one big location in adventure games with all the events revolving around it. Usually it’s a city. Exploring this city you find the paths to lesser locations while constantly back-tracking to some kind of center. Surprisingly it can be very addicting to do this – it feels like you are gradually becoming a part of this world, living and evolving with it. "Returning" is a very important element for building the "atmosphere".
My idea is different. I wanted Ghostdream to be an “Arcade style Adventure game”. I’m not talking about the action elements here – by any means no… All I wanted is to borrow the structure of classic arcade games. That means: game-play consists of several linear episodes (usually called stages), no back-tracking possible, “boss” event at the end of each episode (slightly more advanced game-play element, usually unique).
Here’s the plan for the very first stage of Ghostdream:

Stage 1 PLANa

>Puzzles
Any puzzle ever made in a point and click adventure game is a disguised password menu, consisting of the two parts: “interface” and “key” (or “clue”). No matter how it may look it’s a sequence of typical actions. Normally puzzle designers are concentrating on the interfaces of their passwords, trying to disguise it well enough for you to never understand it’s a password. My idea is the opposite. Simple interfaces and advanced clues:

Stage 1 PLAN puzzle 2

You can clearly see it’s a simple password menu and the clue to it is quite complex. Two good things about it:
>1. You don’t need to wander from one room to another just to press a button/push lever/turn a wheel/etc… you simply press the buttons on one compact menu.
>2. If you happen to know the solution, you can input it in a second. May be it’s your second time playing, or you simply don’t like solving puzzles in adventure games…

The most complex clue of Ghostdream is symbolically represented in a structure of the rooms you’ll find it in. For that trick to work I needed to make 9 extra rooms… and just one simple menu with 9 buttons to solve it.

>>Extras
I’m always drawing more than I need just to have some material left for an art book. I’ll start working on it for real right after I’ll finish the game, but I already have enough art to fill the pages:

Ghost Dialogue art 5 640

Another popular “extra feature” nowadays is a so-called “Commentary Mode”. I can understand why people like it – if I love the game I want to know everything about it and just googling it is rarely enough for me. “Commentary Mode” should be the perfect answer, but… why do I hate it so much?
Because it ruins the atmosphere of the game. The worst thing that a game can do is to tell you in the face – “I am a game”. And this is exactly what this commentary mode is doing – each minute or so you hear developers talking about how they created this game (at the time you are playing it!). It’s a horrible experience for me as a gamer.
My answer is: separate commentary mode from the game and put it into… the art book. The only reason I’m calling it “Art Book” is because people can tell right away what it is without any additional explanations. I should be calling it “Commentary Book” instead – the concept arts will be put “into the comments”, not otherwise.

Lastly, if the game will sell well, I have a DLC in mind, but it’s too soon to dream about it…

This concludes my long article.
Good luck and have a nice day!

Alex

Inside Pictures testc

Ghostdream In Progress
Ghostdream

Ghostdream In Progress

Ghostdream 2 comments

I talk about my point and click adventure game Ghostdream, briefly describing the whole process of making it.

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Zniw Adventure has been Greenlit + development news (4)

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Even more development news for you! Also - after 18 days we got greenlit on Steam Greenlight!

Neofeud gets a Patreon! Help us get this game finished!
Neofeud

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Neofeud has an awesome new Patreon site! Help support us to ensure the game gets finished and not permanently shelved due to financial constraints!

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Comments  (0 - 10 of 12)
GoToHellDave
GoToHellDave

Hi guys. Just to clear up the confusion regarding 'Go to Hell Dave' and Mac. Jaggers pretty much nailed it in his last comment. AGS does support both Mac and Linux, to a certain degree. But they are older versions of the engine and at this point, we're not too sure what limitations that will present to us. All we can really do at this point is build the game in a windows environment and then see what, if anything, we can do to port it across afterwards.

Having said that, if enough Mac or Linux users show a desire to play this game then we will endeavor to do all we can to get a workable version of it on those platforms.

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s_d
s_d

I've built 32-bit and 64-bit versions of the latest official AGS revision on Github, and have played halfway through the Resonance demo with zero problems! I'll continue (and file or fix any bugs I find along the way), and move on to the AGDI & IA fangames, and then Blackwell & Gemini. If they all work just as well, then I'll consider the port complete.

If you make a demo for me to wrap up, and I'll do so and send it to you (you can also have your Linux buddies test it out as well). The Linux AGS port is not perfect currently, but pretty darn good. I'll take a look a the native Mac interpreter (no idea who's working on that), nor am I particularly fond of development on OS X, but if it helps the community, I'll put some time in :-)

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GoToHellDave
GoToHellDave

We plan on releasing our game on mac, still not certain of the technical implications of it yet.

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s_d
s_d

Currently, every AGS game I've seen on Mac uses a Wineskin wrapper. While that approach is a dirty word in Linux (due to Wine's inconsistent behavior in Linux due to library dependencies, 64-bit vs 32-bit issues, and other weirdness), in the land of Fruit Flavored computers, the picture is not so clear. In fact, commercially wrapped ports of triple-A games are distributed for OS X; take a peek at Portingteam.com ... for some perspective on the phenomenon. This isn't to say it's perfect, but it's almost certainly what you'll end up doing if your release date is this year, unless you (or someone on your team) wish to be a Mac AGS porting programmer and dig into engine development.

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AlexVSharp
AlexVSharp

I'm a tad confused. The available platforms list Windows, Mac and Linux, yet all the games I've seen on here made with this engine are listed as Windows only... :|

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doom2.fan
doom2.fan

The official website have a game engine for linux and as i remember is being made a mac one also not exists a editor engine for linux and mac

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ssokolow
ssokolow

The official site only has Linux and MacOS versions of the 2.x engine and, while I remember running across the beginnings of a 3rd-party port of 3.x to Linux and MacOS, I can't remember where I put the link.

Also, it's been a while, but this may be one of those game-builder engines where the resources and/or scripts are bundled into the EXE, making it difficult to take a game and swap the Windows binaries for Linux or MacOS ones.

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s_d
s_d

Linux went unmaintained for a while (back when AGS was a closed source engine) after the maintainer of the port became unable to support it. After that, periodically, larger fan projects would attract someone to request the code from Chris Jones (CJ), who would let them have it, provided they didn't share, and as such, that person would patch it up and get it going for their team's game or two, and then share the patches with CJ.
Then, last year, he opened AGS sources (artistic license, IIRC) and multiple maintaners came out of the woodwork. I built a poor version of the Linux AGS intepreter for a fangame called "PledgeQuest" supporting the Two Guys from Andromeda SpaceVenture Kickstarter project (spiritual successor to the Space Quest series). It was based on bero's work on the SQ fan game Vohaul Strikes Back ( Sqvsb.com ), which was packaged up for Linux. My version kinda sucked (missing sound, for example).
Now, JJS in the AGS community is patching it heavily, including alpha quality support for 64-bit Linux (which will eventually go toward 64-bit Windows as well). I'm going to hop in there and do what I can to help out, but for sure AGS interpreter support on Linux is back in a big way.

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yepwatermelon
yepwatermelon

That's becuase no one plays games on a mac (at least no one in their right mind) and anyone on linux should know how to run a game in wine.

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bakerg
bakerg

Firstly that doesn't answer the question at all, shows a complete lack of knowledge in the area and is just not useful. Wine is available on macs too, along with other stuff like steam etc. The only reason for the lack of games on the platform is because almost the whole world has windows and it is easier to make better gaming hardware for windows, unless you want to make a hackintosh.

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