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Thread: Tutorials.

  1. #1
    Knight
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    Default Tutorials.

    Introduction:

    I decided to start by putting each tutorial's critiques in a reply to this thread. I'm going to be doing a lot of nitpicking which you may or may not regard. I may not get to all tutorials consecutively, but that's why each will be in a new reply.

    Hope this is helpful.

  2. #2
    Knight
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    Default Tutorial 1

    "Getting started part 1: Worlds and maps" -- I would align it with the "What's novashell" title... if you have to make the title of the page stand out i'd make the font on the getting started part of it a bit larger than the rest. It looks odd up next to the edge of the "gray" area.

    "It's also built to allow easy sharing of games you make and modding of them." You may want to say -- "It's also built to allow the ease of sharing your games and the modification of them." -- just a recommendation.

    "The underlying concept is everything is cut and pastable and can be added and removed even during play." -- maybe -- "The underlying concept is that everything is cut-and-pasteable and can be added and removed even during play."

    "Command line options and file associations." -- you may wish to highlight this with the orange text of your titles, even if you don't change the font size.

    The small area just before the title "Words and file associations under windows" and extending down to the bottom of the text seems to be "transparent" as I seem to see some cross hatched pattern on the background behind it along with some kind of line.

    Well that about wraps up tutorial 1's issues.

  3. #3
    Knight
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    Default Tutorial 2

    Again you probably want to align the main tutorial name with the next subheading as aligning it with the text area looks a bit odd.

    Above the "Layer's" heading is a large area of gray space doing nothing. Over the layers heading is that same transparent area where I can see a line and some crosshatching under it.

    "Press Delete or Ctrl-X to erase it. It's gone. Or right click and choose delete." -- Apparently there is no "delete" on the right click context menu. So either you need to add it, or remove that from the tutorial (on a side note, cut is there , and the delete key seems to work just fine).

    "You can left click and drag the icon to move it. However, for practice, let's use cut and paste." -- You should probably just say "You can left click and drag the icon to move it, or use cut and paste."

    Also after cutting and pasting, there's nothing telling you how to clear the copy buffer. Should be in there just after you paste the object.

    "What you need to know about Entities and Tile Pics" -- has more space than it should be before it, as well as the transparent area that covers the text background.

    "Barrel punching: The sport" -- same extra area of gray and the same transparency under the letters

    Note: you might want to put the left drag tip up when the user is asked to select something the first time. This way down the tutorial somewhere they won't be confused.

    "Highlight the "broken" line and click the "Remove" button, then press OK to close the properties dialog." -- should say 'click he "Remove Selected" button' for dummies like me :-)

    "Coolest commands" header, has that same extra space before it, and transparent area under the words.

    "Ok, make a bunch of ducks and then kill all of them." -- Maybe you should tell them a bit more explicitly... as I was reading I sort of skimmed over it and skipped it, then when it talked about duck heads I was lost. Realizing my mistake I re-read and made a bunch of ducks and killed them. So maybe you should outline it. "Ok, copy the ducks like we did the barrels. Then exit out of editor mode by hitting "F1" and punch them until they're a bloody mess of headless mayhem. Now hit F1 again to re-enter the editor. The maid sure isn't going to want to mop up this mess!"

    zoom and map switching... gray area, and transparent background -- hmm it seems all the headings do this

    Well I think that's about it for this tutorial. I will check through the other tutorials later.

  4. #4
    Knight
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    Default Tutorial 3

    The title again is to the edge of the text area, instead you should line it up with the subheadings and if you need to make the font slightly larger.

    Also apparently the transparent area and extra gray blocks are not in this tutorial, will update you on the other ones.

    After changing the DragonEggs.novashell file to have a new title, you should tell them to them to save (Right before Run Your World!)

    "Your in your world now" header has transparent background and too much space above it like in the other tutorials.

    For "enter custom data" for the text object, you might want to tell them to edit the selected property they need to double click.

    Building the Map heading has transparent background.

    I guess most of the headings do this thing... so from here on out I won't report them. I'm using firefox so that may have to do with it.

    That's about it for 4, i guess there's not much when you don't include that problem in firefox.

    Edit---

    Okay I'm actually starting to attempt to build a quickie prototype level for RedZone and I stumbled across this little caveat when trying to import art, or at least when I tried to do it, it's possible there was something preventing it from reinitializing even though I *did* restart the engine several times. But if the graphics aren't in any directory (ie the main maps directory, but not in a specific map or it's own directory) the graphics won't import. I used that trick of an underline _Graphics to make it only check for graphics there. Then it worked fine.
    Last edited by Uhfgood; 03-13-2007 at 01:08 PM. Reason: New thing occurred

  5. #5
    Knight
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    Default Tutorial 4

    Well considering tut 4 looks alright, I had to put SOMETHING in, so here goes

    At the end the line "Use your arrow keys to move. If all went well, you can sort of "float him around". Yay. We can fine tune the physics and speed through other Entity functions later." -- Notice Yay. lacks enthusiasm -- probably should be something like Yay! or YAY!!! or something :-)

    That ends this tutorial's critiques ;-)

  6. #6
    Administrator Seth's Avatar
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    Default

    Thanks as always, uhf!
    Seth A. Robinson
    Robinson Technologies

  7. #7
    Knight
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    Default

    Will continue with tutorials 5-7 here soon.

    Uhf

  8. #8
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    Default Tutorial 5

    "Now, select the chalice, tree, dragon, player and egg and open their tile properties. Enable "Cast shadow"." -- Should be "Move the chalice, tree, dragon, and egg over to your map somewhere. Now open their tile properties and enable "Cast Shadow"" -- you didn't tell them to do that, and some people will just do it outright and not be able to see the shadows. Also should probably tell them to move everything back off the map except for the dragon at this point.

    I've noticed that when you click "edit" for script and there's nothing there it asks if you want to create it. When you create the script the first character seems to be like an end of line or carriage return or line feed or something (it manifests itself as a little small box -- usually means it's an unprintable character). See if you can find out what this is. Thanks.

    Well really that's about it here, looks good so far! Got my dragon stuck twice. Eventually moved the way points around.

  9. #9
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    Default Tutorial 6

    "This continues the game we started in part 3 and continued in part 4 and part 5." -- the link to part 5 goes to part 4.

    "After using SetDesiredSpeed, it's a good idea to set the SetMaxMovementSpeed to make sure it's possible to move at the desired speed. SetAcceleration gives us more 'oomph' when we start moving, this feels less sluggish because we can reach the top speed quicker," --
    Should read "After using SetDesiredSpeed, it's a good idea to use SetMaxMovementSpeed to make sure it's possible to move at the desired speed. SetAcceleration gives us more 'oomph' when we start moving. This feels less sluggish because we can reach the top speed quicker." --
    notice "use SetMaxMovementSpeed" instead of 'set the' and "This feels less sluggish" is a new sentence. (Also the last character should be a period not a comma.)

    "1. After looking around, it schedules LookAround() (itself) to be called again, this will happen throughout the dragon's life, regardless of what its GoalManager is doing. Schedule() is very useful to do things at regular intervals." -- the Schedule link doesn't point to anything

    "2. We schedule with a slightly random time, this is good practice, because if we have 20 dragons we don't want them all running this function at the exact time. The randomness staggers it out, making game play smoother for CPU intensive things like the HasLineOfSightToPosition check." -- HasLineOfSightToPosition link doesn't point to anything.

    "4. When we see the player, we clear all goals and add some news, but under a subgoal called "ChasingPlayer". The reason I did that was so I could easily check for that goal name later, to see if we just found the player or I was already chasing him." --
    Change "When we see the player, we clear all goals and add some news, but under a subgoal called "ChasingPlayer"." to read --
    "When we see the player, we clear all goals and add some new ones under a subgoal called "ChasingPLayer"."

    "5. I added the SetTurnSpeed call so he won't appear to "slow down" at corners, if we were using a visual profile with 'directions', it would look cool to turn, but for now it just looks weird because the same sprite is used for all directions." -- should break up a bit into sentences --
    Try this "I added the SetTurnSpeed call so he won't appear to 'slow down' at corners. If we were using a visual profile with 'directions', it would look cool to turn. For now it just looks weird because the same sprite is used for all directions."

    Well that's all I got for tutorial 6. Looks like a working game now!

    Now on to 7

  10. #10
    Knight
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    Default Tutorial 7!

    "If you've been dilligently following the tutorials up until now (Shame on your for inserting swear words everywhere in your scripts! Nah, jk, I do that too), you've probably had the random family member walk by and ask why the characters in your "game" are floating around like stupid looking cardboard cut-outs."--
    Should read-- "If you've been diligently following the tutorials up until now (shame on you for inserting swear words everywhere in your scripts -- Nah, j/k, I do that too), you've probably had the random family member walk by and ask why characters in your "game" are floating around like stupid looking carboard cut-outs."--
    Note the word "diligently" or rather it's spelling, you instead of your, and shame should be a small s :-)

    "Ah, much better. Now he runs around pretty good. Notice his "center point" (the little yellow X in the middle of the collision shape) automatically is moved to the center of his collision shape, this is so the physics work right." -- "this is so the physics work right." should be "this is so the physics will work right."

    I guess that's about it, for the critques.

    One concern I have is that for some reason after I collected my dragon eggs, now whenever i restart I no longer have any eggs. I guess I have to make sure there's a script that reinitializes them or something?

  11. #11
    Administrator Seth's Avatar
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    Thanks I've gone through and fixed them up. Hopefully the CCS works properly on all browsers now.
    Seth A. Robinson
    Robinson Technologies

  12. #12
    Knight
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    Default

    Looks great, thanks Seth

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