I just committed some code for intelligently positioning characters during novel scenes with more than one person present. It was (as usual) surprisingly hard to determine how to keep track of where everyone is, when someone should slide gracefully over to let someone else in, and how to fade characters in and out properly. I think I’ve got it down now, but the code was pretty hilariously broken a few times along the way, with characters sliding this way and that as if they were on ice skates.
It’s surprisingly difficult to get a Guy to do something as simple as “move somewhere, stop, shoot some missiles, then move somewhere else.” Last night and tonight, I’ve been working on the behavior of our trimans enemy, who accompanies some of the bigger enemies in the cave part of our demo level. Finally, I think I’ve got it feeling pretty good. In retrospect, I have gobs of new respect for the guys who did this sort of stuff on old, limited hardware, without access to the kind of prewritten tools that I’m taking advantage of. Aero Blasters, R-Type, Gradius… It’s all so much more impressive now.