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Started new Front End for Mugen Project, feedback requested. (Read 1256 times)

Started by DrStrange, April 30, 2012, 11:16:39 PM
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Started new Front End for Mugen Project, feedback requested.
#1  April 30, 2012, 11:16:39 PM
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------------------------UPDATED June 26, 2012------------------------------------------------

We are just about ready tp have a beta. Anyone interested in testing? It will just be Versus mode to start. But you will be able to play with the XML and see how to make your own menus and what not.

So I have started a new Front End project for Mugen. The entire project is driven by XML "skins". So the end user who is developing a Full Game should be able to use this by just modifying XML files. (A menu editor is planned in the future as well).

I will update this post with new information and try and keep it some what organized.

Post Change Log
-----------------------
June 26, 2012 -- General Progress Update
May 21, 2012 -- Updated Menu Creation section
May 3, 2012 -- Added new section on User stats
May 1, 2012 -- Formatted post. Added sections.

-----------------------------General Features-------------------------------------------------
  • Fully customizable menus based on XML templates.
  • Customizable Story and Adventure modes based on XML templates
  • Support for hidden/un-lockable characters
  • Support for Tag team mode *****(If characters are coded with it)*****
  • Tracks user statistics both local and online stats
  • Achievement system
  • more to come....



-----------------------------Menu Creation Options-------------------------------------------------
The following is a list of elements the end user will be able to use in order to create all of the menus in the front end.


An unlimited number of these elements can be on any menu

  • Unlimited background images
  • Unlimited background animations
  • Unlimited character selection boxes
  • Unlimited foreground images
  • Unlimited foreground animations

The character selection boxes can be used for characters, stages or menu items. Basically anything that you need to have a list of.

These elements change based on the character selection box in the first list. One set for each player. At most you can select 4 characters so that is the limit.
  • up to 4 Character Portrait Boxes
  • up to 4 Character Idle animation boxes
  • up to 4 Character select animation boxes
  • up to 4 Additional Character image boxes
  • up to 4 text boxes

The menus will support all the common image formats including animated Gifs. The background animations are animations that the end user can build and will require filename, time, and opacity to be defined.

I think with these properties and element types users should be able to create any type of menu needed.

We ran into an issue with the way the individual menus were being generated. We have modified this and am now moving some navigation controls into the XML that defines the screen. This will allow the end user to create the navigation of the game and it is no longer hard coded in the application.


-----------------------------Story Mode-------------------------------------------------
Story mode will allow you to create a story similar to Mortal Kombat VS DC. You will setup a predefined list of characters to go through. This will all be defined by an XML document. The XML is below. This should allow you to create any kind of story that you want.


Spoiler, click to toggle visibilty

You can add as many matches to the story as you like. Each match will define an intro, win and lose screen and/or movie. We will support WMV files. Still looking to add other formats. The screens can be animated and include anything you want. Keep in mind it will not use anything in the character file. It is all outside of the character thus avoiding any limitations that has.


-----------------------------User Stats-------------------------------------------------
I have written a class in C# that will read the Mugen log file and and parse out the data. All the data is stored in an embedded SQLite database. I am logging the results of every match, This is the beginning of the Achievement System and High Score Boards that I am planning to implement down the line. It can handle any number of rounds dynamically.

One of the key things I had to account for was the fact that the end user can exit Mugen before the match is done. If that happen, I can properly forfeit the match and not record any stats. A long term feature is to add an Online database to display real time stats and achievements.  This should not be too tough as I can just create a small web service to talk to a MYSQL database or something to send the stats.

I think it would be cool to have a mugen leader board for full games. See who completes it first, how many matches in a row, etc... Will need to make it some what secure so that the stats can not be hacked, but that should not be too much trouble.
Last Edit: June 27, 2012, 03:41:56 AM by DrStrange
Re: Started new Front End for Mugen Project, feedback requested.
#2  May 01, 2012, 08:00:57 PM
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Updated to add more content to initial post.
Re: Started new Front End for Mugen Project, feedback requested.
#3  May 02, 2012, 04:13:52 PM
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Re: Started new Front End for Mugen Project, feedback requested.
#4  May 02, 2012, 05:28:32 PM
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Yes I am. I contacted the author a couple days ago. I have not heard from him as of yet.
Re: Started new Front End for Mugen Project, feedback requested.
#5  May 04, 2012, 12:28:23 AM
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So anyone out there know SQL scripting and want to help me out? I have a small SQLite database in the application which holds all the match data. I have started writing statements to derive Achievements and some stuff that can be displayed on a high score screen.

For example I have longest win streak as a view on the data. From that I am creating an achievement of "Win 10 Versus matches in a row". I could use some help writing the SQL code that will pull this out of the database, I know how to do it as I have put the framework in place already. It would just be cool to have someone to help out with this so I can work on something else.

So if you have any interest let me know. If not I will keep plugging away.
Re: Started new Front End for Mugen Project, feedback requested.
#6  May 04, 2012, 01:28:07 AM
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keeping the results like this sounds like a cool idea, at least locally. the problem with online results is that obviously you can never be sure they aren't faked :ninja::goi:

I don't have enough spare time to be more involved in your project, but if you need any sql help or can't think of a good way to do a particular query feel free to ask, I'm pretty sure me (or someone else) will be able to help :)

sql is a querying lanuage, not a scripting one.
Re: Started new Front End for Mugen Project, feedback requested.
#7  May 04, 2012, 04:38:47 PM
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True. But I should be able to encrypt the database and have a secure connection to an online server. I am not sure how many people would spend any time trying to hack this.

I will need to work on some type of server component anyway as I am looking into adding downloadable content. So ifyou put out a Full Game and want to add a couple stages or characters after release you can allow your users to update the game through the front end.
Re: Started new Front End for Mugen Project, feedback requested.
#8  May 21, 2012, 10:21:59 PM
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Small update to Menu Creation section.
Re: Started new Front End for Mugen Project, feedback requested.
#9  May 24, 2012, 03:24:42 AM
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    • mugenmultiverse.fanbb.net/
Re: Started new Front End for Mugen Project, feedback requested.
#10  May 24, 2012, 04:20:39 PM
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Yeah I saw that. I am definitely going to look at that when I get more involved in the Story mode. Right now we are working on dynamic menu navigation. It is a bit tricky but we should have it running early next week.
Re: Started new Front End for Mugen Project, feedback requested.
#11  June 27, 2012, 03:48:17 AM
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Question regarding Mugen integration. So there is a limitation to this in that Mugen will always open in its own window. The FE will remain open in the background. I don't see a way around this. Any thoughts on this?

I am planning on including Mugen in the build of the application. Does anyone see any problems with this? It will be freely distributed so I don't think I am violating any licensing.  But this will make the download much bigger. Any thoughts on this?

Also, I updated the first post. I am about ready to start a beta test. I would like to get one or two people to help me if anyone is interested. It will only be versus mode to start. But you will be able to play around with building your own menu's by modding the XML docs. I just started the documentation process so I should be ready soon.

Re: Started new Front End for Mugen Project, feedback requested.
#12  June 27, 2012, 03:54:07 AM
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I WANT THIS so bad!  :o . Always wanted a front end for my fullgame but was too lazy to learn how to code it by myself :P

I'm still reading the whole thing but, would it be possible to have a joystick or keyboard config in the frontend itself? So I can lock the mugen's option menu and prevent other people from tweaking stuff like life and speed.

EDIT: There shouldn't be any problem at all with including the mugen files in the frontend itself. Many encrypted mugen fullgames already do that.
Last Edit: June 27, 2012, 04:04:23 AM by Rednavi
Re: Started new Front End for Mugen Project, feedback requested.
#13  June 27, 2012, 04:33:22 AM
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Funny you mention the joystick support. It is something me and the other developer were talking about today.

Yeah I want all the options to be configured through the front end. So this is definitely on the table. Right now we do have a config file holding the key bindings. But I have not built the menu or logic to bind them in an options menu or anything. That is coming though.

But I do want to limit the options to some extent so the front end developer can do things like you said.

So based on your post you just signed up to beta test :)
Re: Started new Front End for Mugen Project, feedback requested.
#14  June 29, 2012, 07:00:04 PM
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 :yeses:

Yeah I'll give it a try when you're ready.
Re: Started new Front End for Mugen Project, feedback requested.
#15  July 05, 2012, 08:15:40 PM
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We are working on Story mode now. As I said in the first post, the "Story" will be defined in an XML file. A story will have an unlimited number of chapters. Each Chapter will define the match parameters. In addition, you can define an intro image with sound and/or a video. Right now just WMV support. Will look to add more formats later.

After the match, if the player wins a win image with sound will appear and/or a video. If they lose, they will get the lose image and/or video. After a win or a lose, the user will be prompted if they want to continue the story or quit to the main menu.

Intros and such can have any number of background images, any number of foreground images and any number of animations.

That is pretty much everything. Again, we are not using any of the characters intros. All need to be built outside the character files.



     Posted: April 09, 2013, 07:04:05 PM
Been a while since I updated this thread.

A lot of changes have been made. I decided to move to Game Maker as it is a much quicker development time for me. The front end I am writing is for a specific game, but I think it will be able to be easily modified for another game. All the features listed above are still in play. We are getting ready to beta test in the next few weeks.