When Caveman Craig 1.0 came out the game was very hard and people played for a long long time. Unfortunately, Tim and I made the game a little too easy as versions past and now a lot of people are saying that they found the game pretty boring once they got 10 or so hunters. I want a strong replay value on Caveman Craig, so as a result Tim and I will be working on version 1.5 in the next week or so. Luckily, making the game more difficult is just a matter of tweaking. However, if you guys have any ideas on how we can make the game more difficult without adding much / anything (just tweaking), feel free to comment here!
In other news, I’ve recreated the AI for the hunter, preparer, and gatherer for Caveman Craig 2. In caveman craig 1, I made many holes in the AI that would cause them to act strangly, and as we were very restricted with time I patched up the holes by adding more code, not modifying the current code. So this made the AI a little less efficient (though effective). In CC2, I have made sure the AI is programmed efficiently in a manner where no ‘holes’ / bugs are produced. So far, so good – all cavemen are working perfectly with old and new features. Tim and I really appreciate your suggestions, guys. We’re reading them through and bringing many of them to the table to discuss. Some of them are a little too much concept for too little gameplay, but we’ll of course consider them all.
Concept Art and Screenshots for CC2 soon!!
Today I recreated the Gatherer AI. I’m quite surprised to see that he is running around doing things as he should without too much testing – I slimmed down the code (HEAPS) from the other game, optimised it, and modified it to fit the new engine, and after a few quick fixes he’s happily dragging carcasses around and ripping out berries.
I’ve centralised the actions and code between Craig and other cavemen so that conflicts and visual flaws are minimised. Instead of gatherers having a unique code for walking and ducking that’s different to Craig, they simulate key presses according to their actions, to ensure they act just like Craig does. For instance, a caveman can no longer move unless his image is the walking animation – there is no exceptions. The restrictions on when they can perform certain actions is very strict, and clear, and I’ve filled gaps to ensure that a caveman doesn’t stop doing things just because he is too restricted. This also assures minimal redundancy of code and faster performance.
In other news, I’ve laid down a pretty good idea of what dinosaurs we’ll be implementing into Caveman Craig 2. At the moment, there are 5 herbivores, and 5 carnivores, plus a few ‘background dinosaurs’ that will be present but not on the actual battlefield.
Stegosaurus – Huge and hard to take down.
Pachycephalosaurs – A fiesty herbivore who charges into anyone who attacks him.
Triceratops – He’s back and more irritating this time!
Parasaurolophus – The loudest dinosaur ever discovered. These guys run in herds and are hard to hit.
“Herbivore” – No scientific name as such. This is the green dinosaur you see in the original Caveman Craig.
Velociraptor – They still leap on you, and they still eat you.
Allosaurus – A taste of the t-rex. Eats cavemen whole, but is a bit slower in its attack (though runs fast).
Compsognathus – Attacks cavemen in huge packs and hangs until either they or the caveman dies.
Tyrannosaurus Rex – This big ol’ grumpy beast still roams the prehistoric land in CC2.
Dilophosaurus (Jurassic Park style) – A bit like a frilled-neck-lizard except freaking scary, and spits poison at cavemen.
Also present – brachiosaurus, pterodactyl.
I am still going through all the suggestions you guys have (and good suggestions they are) to revise the list.
The results are in, and YoYo Games has determined Caveman Craig @ second place!
Thankyou to everybody who supported Caveman Craig since its release – anything from one small comment to promoting, discussing, suggesting ideas, reporting bugs, etc, helped Caveman Craig reach second place at the YoYo Games’ Ancient Civilisation Competition.
For all the worthy winners and the judges’ review, go here: http://www.yoyogames.com/gamemaker/competition02
Rhys Andrews and Tim Andrews
In the past few days I’ve started physical development of Caveman Craig 2. At the moment, it’s the basic engine using Caveman Craig’s sprites, so it’s nothing to look at for the moment. However, I’m taking careful steps to ensure it’s going to work very smoothly.
We won’t be releasing information about the new features for a while yet, however I will mention that there will be a new control scheme that will resolve the issue of trying to pickup rocks while standing over carcasses or bushes. It’s also setup so there can’t be any jarring of animations – if Craig is walking, he’ll be using his walk animation, there’s no exception. Where as, in Caveman Craig, you could be flying in the air with a ducking animation after being hit by a Triceratops. Simple things like that.
In the meantime, Tim is sketching some concept art for new cavemen looks and the new dinosaurs. I hope to upload some of those sketches sometime soon.
We need a list of candidates for dinosaur enemies in Caveman Craig 2. Would you like to help out? Just comment here and give us a name of a *real* dinosaur that you would like to have appear in Caveman Craig 2. Make sure you tell us whether it is a herbivore, carnivore, or both, and whether you would consider it aggressive (attacks without cause), passive (attacks if threatened), or defenceless (runs / ignores).
I don’t want to give you a list of what we have so far, but we have around 5 carnivores and 5 herbivores so far.
Caveman Craig version 1.4 is now available exclusive to the 64Digits mirror. It is a BETA, so I will be taking copious notes of any bug reports or issues, and if necessary, will revise when finally updating the YoYo Games mirror. You can download the game HERE
For a full list of changes, take a look at the changes document here:http://64digits.com/users/RhysAndrews/changes.txt
I’ve just discovered some great ways of optimising the code in the caveman AI for Caveman Craig. At the moment, I have 100 cavemen in the room with full 60/60 FPS – prior to the optimisation I had 25/60 FPS after just 40 cavemen.
Don’t expect the same results on every system, as I do have a fairly powerful computer. However, you can confidently expect a 100% increase at the minimum!! Yes, I’m very excited.
Caveman Craig 1.4 will be out as soon as the results are in, or if Sandy gives me permission to update the game prior to the results. I am still making adjustments to fix some glitches with the optimisations but they’re very minor. This, along with a new licence, and difficulty increases, will be available very soon.
Edit 1: Those results aforementioned are for cavemen following me, but not doing their own thing. There is a significant decrease in AI activity when they are just following me. When running around and doing their thing, it starts to lag a bit after about 35 cavemen. However, the lag is much more gradual and thus easy to cope with.
I’ve found quite a few people who are redistributing Caveman Craig on their website without reading the simple licence in the readme document. I don’t mind if somebody wants to promote the game but if they don’t have the common courtesy to read the licence that tells them they need to ask for my permission first, I find it sort of rude.
So to anyone who happens to want to redistribute this game, make sure you read the licence first! I’m more than happy to let you do so so long as you actually ask. That respect is much appreciated.
In regards to this, an update to Caveman Craig will be released as soon as the YoYo Games Ancient Civilisation results are in. It will include an updated licence and some increases in difficulty (too easy at the moment). Considering other changes.
Considering that Tim and I will still be making updates to Caveman Craig, and that we are working on the sequel, here is our blog that covers all information about Caveman Craig, the “press” response, download links, and development log for Caveman Craig 2.
Make sure you save this to your favourites or RSS Feed it or whatever you want to do!