Olvand is a little multiplayer sandbox RPG, where the players live in self-built towns and can go on all kinds of adventures together. Imagine living with your friends in a small town in the mountains, or creating a new group of friends in a pub in the metropole you all live in. There will be several minigames the inhabitants of a server can play together, among which will be combat based games like King of the Hill or Capture the Flag. You will be able to play against other people in your city, or as a city against another city, or as a whole server against another server. The combat works with self-built guns, in which all kinds of powers can be combined to create unique effects. You can sign up to be a tester on olvand.com.

Some pictures of what I want to add in the future:

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Building a little town together A fishing contest Mining for materials
Blog RSS Feed Report abuse Latest News: A new architcture for the monster generator

1 comment by Woseseltops on Apr 19th, 2015

Hi all! I'm happy to tell you that I'm finally back on track, working again on Olvand's next update. The last few blogposts, I mostly told you about what exactly is in these updates, and why. This week, I would like to take a slightly different approach, and tell you about the code architecture. This is because I've spent a lot of time working on integrating the [monster generator] into the game, and I ended up doing it in a much more generic, elegant way than I originally imagined.

The original plan and its downsides

The code for the monster generator already seemed largely finished when I wanted to start integrating it: it could generate monsters with various appearances, various colors, from various sides, and also 'summarize' its creations in 8-character strings, so they could easily be sent around the internet.


My original plan was to simply add this generator to the Olvand repository, and then link to it from other parts of the game. For example, when the server generates a cave, it asks the monster generator for a few 8-character strings that represent monsters, and when the client needs to turn these representations into actual graphics, it again asks the monster generator to do so.

However, there were two main downsides to the original implementation:

* The generator was not easily extendible: adding new bodies, bodyparts, colors, etc. always meant fiddling with the code. While that is not that problematic right now, now I remember how everything works, it will be when I return to this code in, say, 2 years. But more importantly, it won't allow people without access to the source code (=everybody except me) to extend the generator. Over the last few years, I've grown more and more enthousiastic about content creation by the players; it's definitely something I would want to encourage. Closing the whole thing off right now already would be completely opposite to that.

* The generator could only be used for monsters. Just like the fish generator could only be used for fish, the original monster generator could only be used for monsters, despite there being a lot of overlap in their functionality. This is a particularly stupid thing to do because I already have a -spoiler!- fruit generator planned for the next update.

The new architecture

So the new plan is something that can be (1) used for anything and (2) extended without programming. I achieved this with a combination of a special folder structure in combination with JSON configuration files. To understand how that works exactly, you have to realize that all of Olvand's generators work in roughly this way:

1. A base image is chosen
2. "Bodyparts" are merged with this base image
3. The whole thing is recolored


And in the case of the monsters, this has to be done for all positions the monster can be in (looking down, walking west, lying death, etc.). This leads to this folder structure:

code:
Base A
* Side a
  * Bodypart type I
    * Option 1.png
    * Option 2.png
  * Bodypart type II
    * Option 1.png
    * Option 2.png
* Side b
  * Bodypart type I
    * Option 1.png
    * Option 2.png
  * Bodypart type II
    * Option 1.png
    * Option 2.png
Base B
* Side a
  * Bodypart type I
    * Option 1.png
    * Option 2.png
  * Bodypart type II
    * Option 1.png
    * Option 2.png
* Side b
  * Bodypart type I
    * Option 1.png
    * Option 2.png
  * Bodypart type II
    * Option 1.png
    * Option 2.png

 

And obviously, in this example there are only two options for everything, but this can be extended to infinity by simply creating more folders.

So there you have it, a nice and easy system to generate monsters, and anything really. I have to admit the actual system is slightly more complicated, because it also covers animation, but this is not much more than editing a JSON file in the top folder. This is also where you can specify which colors can be varied, and to what extent. Anyway, right now, I'm pretty happy it, and I will be even more when it's time to build the fruit generator!

If you want more development, see [twitter] or [facebook]. If you want to be a tester, you can subscribe on[olvand.com].

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Post comment Comments  (50 - 60 of 401)
Brian253
Brian253 Aug 30 2013, 7:23pm says:

Hi there! I'm playing Olvand in my netbook (I just downloaded it :D), and the window, o well, I'll just show it you:

I1252.photobucket.com

I1252.photobucket.com

Is there some way I can fix it, or put it on fullscreen? Or maybe it doesn't affect the gameplay?

P.D.: I really like what you did here! I was looking for a game like this!

P.P.D.: I'm sorry if my english is messed up, It's not my native languaje...

+3 votes     reply to comment
Brian253
Brian253 Aug 30 2013, 8:59pm replied:

...and yes, I've tried pushing Alt+Enter (several chances, just to ensure xD) and I still can't put it on fullscreen, it just opens the chat tab.

+3 votes     reply to comment
Woseseltops Creator
Woseseltops Aug 31 2013, 2:37am replied:

Mmm, yeah, you want something like full screen for now, which is indeed alt+enter. If alt+enter opened the chat tab, my guess didn't push them at the same time. Could that be it? If not, please open a topic at the forums Indiedb.com I'll help you there. I want to reserve this place for more general questions and comments :).

PS
Thanks! And your English is perfectly fine.

+3 votes   reply to comment
Brian253
Brian253 Aug 31 2013, 2:55am replied:

@Woseseltops Sorry for the OT xD
I'll just do what I say to kaytavo for now, since the problem may be my computer, and not the game itself. There isn't nothing much I can do, so I'll just leave it, since (again) it doesn't seem to affect the gameplay.

Thanks for replying and please keep up your great work!

+2 votes     reply to comment
kaytavo
kaytavo Aug 30 2013, 11:46pm replied:

restart the client then try alt tab again
some times alt tab doesn't work
best time to try is when you first open it
you can also try increasing the screens display resolution

+3 votes     reply to comment
Brian253
Brian253 Aug 31 2013, 2:47am replied:

Nope. It just refuses to get in fullscreen. I can't increase the actual resolution, since it's already at it's max (1024*600). I know there's ways to force it to highter resolutions, but I hear that doing so could break my monitor...
Maybe I should just leave it as is, since the actual resolution doesn't seem to affect the gameplay. Thanks for replying anyways!

+2 votes     reply to comment
kaytavo
kaytavo Aug 26 2013, 4:22am says:

here is a gun layout i call the "Medic's Double Barrel"

S152.photobucket.com

+3 votes     reply to comment
Woseseltops Creator
Woseseltops Aug 26 2013, 4:47am replied:

I wish I could hit the + button more. I know (from experience :P) this gun is incredibly powerful. If somebody ever creates a wiki this build deserves its own page.

+3 votes   reply to comment
kaytavo
kaytavo Aug 25 2013, 7:26am says:

Notice to those who play on the wessel1 server if you want to start a town head north. i left a unclaimed town hall and some stuff to start you out.

+3 votes     reply to comment
kaytavo
kaytavo Aug 25 2013, 4:38am says:

@Woseseltops
about bigger bags and or carts:
i assume they are not yet implemented
but do you plan on adding them with in the next update or so?

+3 votes     reply to comment
Woseseltops Creator
Woseseltops Aug 25 2013, 1:17pm replied:

Indeed not yet implemented, but they're high on my list now you can build things which need a lot of material. Not sure if they'll make the next update, though (but thanks for the reminder :) ).

+3 votes   reply to comment
kaytavo
kaytavo Aug 25 2013, 1:24pm replied:

no problem thanks for the awesome game ;)

+3 votes     reply to comment
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Olvand
Platform
Windows
Developed By
Woseseltops
Engine
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Release Date
Released Aug 18, 2012
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Highest Rated (5 agree) 10/10

Amazing game can't wait for more updates.

Sep 29 2012, 9:26am by jeco0357

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