The Weekly Update: AI brings life to Boxman

David

One of the many benefits of moving to Unreal 4 was easier integration of AI. This is great for many reasons. It allows us to test and balance the game without the help of  a vast array of players, since there is only two of us. But also it allows us to have people play Boxman before the servers are all setup.

And this week, after much work AI is functioning. And it’s awesome. It’s the first time we’ve been able to play the game properly in Unreal 4 and it’s so much fun. We’re very excited about the demo now since we know you’re going to really enjoy playing it.

Take a look at these gifs of us playing against AI:

AI has been my primary effort this week, besides other minor improvements here and there while we wait for the new version of Unreal to be released. It has a whole bunch of stuff in it that we need for the demo, but we have considered moving prematurely and working on the game so we don’t miss our June deadline for the demo.

Anyway, aside from working on AI, Tyler has been working on improving the map you’ve all seen so far. Let’s hear what he has to say

Tyler

The week has been about enhancing the overall appearance and feel of the game. One of the main tasks of mine was expanding the map Ambush into a more 8 player friendly arena. With that added, I was able to create the AI navigation and spawns that comfortably support 8 players, instead of feeling like a cramped deathtrap. In addition to expanding the map, I reduced areas where camping is an effective technique, the AIs could be found regularly waiting for swarms of enemies to arrive to their death, and that is not a great feature in a game. These map changes, in addition to the changes David made with the AI, have resulted in a cleaner, more fun match experience.
My next few tasks are really filling the game out, currently there are not nearly enough sounds, so that is something I will be adding. We want to be sure we can show off a functional game by the time the demo releases to the public in June. That is something we are really excited about, and are making sure we meet all the deadlines we have set for ourselves. Another thing I have been working on is the feel of weapons, including rate of fire, bullet momentum, and recoil for each weapon. The balance of these are really crutial to an enjoyable experience. All in all, the last week has been a great one! The community has been active on reddit, and we love hearing suggestions and thoughts from you guys!
David & Tyler