Jahed Ahmed Software, Games

My first attempt at making a Unity game

I've started going through my old blog posts on Tumblr and found my first ever attempt at making a game in Unity back in 2014. It didn't really get anywhere but it was kind of fun. I had zero knowledge of 3D modelling and hadn't made a game in 3D so pretty much everything was new to me.

Unity Game

The aim was to create a shoot 'em up where you can shift the camera angle from 3D to 2D. Similar to Paper Mario but more action-oriented.

It was the first time I also used a game engine like Unity, with its packaged interface and workflow. Can't say I enjoyed it. I did however enjoy learning to use Blender and making very simple 3D models. Figuring out how to texture and UV map was hard though but it was getting there.


FrontierNav Update (2016-03-28)

Precious Resources

Doing all these links, searches and everything is pretty straight forward now.

  • Added Precious Resource pages and search
    • Barebones data only added from Primordia, rest of the regions and more detail to come later.
  • Added links to and from Precious Resources and the Data Probes they can be mined from.

Preview

Data, data, data.

It's still a pain getting all the data in. The only solution is to add community contributions. But that's even more of a pain! Logins, roles, database, sanitising, server provisioning and maintenance... Maybe later.


FrontierNav Update (2016-03-23)

Mobile & WiiU improvements

Mainly focused on fixing various UX and technical issues on mobile and WiiU browsers as there's substantial traffic coming from those devices. WiiU performance isn't great but it can't be helped, it is useable now at the least.

I didn't spend much time on these changes so the UX can be a bit clunky, the main aim was just getting feature parity with the desktop/larger view.

  • Fixed navigation controls squashing up on small width devices.
  • Allow toggling sidebar without having to navigate away from the current selection.
  • Attached sidebar controls to the top so you don't need to keep scrolling up to access controls
  • Reorganised navigation controls in order of what is most used.
  • WiiU improvements
    • Fixed Collectible Areas view freezing the map.
    • Fixed CSS background gradients not working by using fallback colors.

Preview Preview

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FrontierNav Update (2016-03-22)

All locations added! Milestone reached.

I've imported all the locations from these images now with some useful information.

Preview

  • All camps, caves, scenic viewpoints, landmarks, areas, unexplored territories and islands added.
    • If there's any I've missed, let me know.
  • Linked cave locations with their collectibles page.
  • Slightly optimised location search.
  • Colour-coded native map markers so it's more obvious what they are.
    • They're still white but have a coloured outline so that the original look-and-feel is kept.
  • Comments section added just because...

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FrontierNav Update (2016-03-20)

Better Location Markers and Categorisation

Finally decided on how I'm going to show all those locations on the map. There's just so many and so little space.

Preview

  • Locations are now categorised (Scenic Viewpoint, Areas, Landmarks, Unexplored Territories).
  • Added fancy labelled location markers based on FrontierNav markers as seen in in-game-cutscene.
  • Properly named previously generic cave locations.
  • Made it easier on the backend to add more locations.
    • This isn't visible in the frontend but it means I can add all those other locations with a lot less hassle. It's also a step towards user-generated content which is the end-goal for this project.

These changes may impact performance because of the number of markers that are now on the screen at any one time. Eventually, I'll add filters so the user can control the types of locations that are visible but for now it's not that bad. It will be a lot more sluggish once I'm done migrating all the data from the previously linked guide.


FrontierNav Update (2016-03-18)

Markers and Sitemaps

No real content update today. More just tweaks, refactoring and optimisation.

  • Added a yellow pulsing marker on locations so that they're easier to see (see image).
  • Autogenerate sitemaps for SEO.

Preview


FrontierNav Update (2016-03-13)

Location Search

The aim of today was to get the data model tidied up a bit so that I can easily introduce more locations (e.g. sightseeing locations).

  • Added location search. Currently for in-game map locations and islands only.
  • Locations are now linked like collectible areas are.
  • Allow tab navigation through search results.
  • Remodelled underlying data for easier querying and flexibility.

Preview


Fuzzy vs Exact Search

Since I released the FrontierNav app, a lot of people were confused with the search system. The search currently uses "fuzzy search", meaning it looks for similar patterns to what you're typing and rates it instead of looking for exact combinations of letters. That's why you might not always get the results you're hoping for and why you get multiple results that don't seem to make sense (for a human being).

Fuzzy Search
Fuzzy Search

Exact Search
Exact Search

Take the above examples. The first is fuzzy, the second isn't. When searching for the "5th Gen Recycler", like a lot of Xenoblade X's nouns, they can be a bit awkward to type. So it's enough to just type roughly what you think it is rather than exactly with the fuzzy search. With the exact search, you need to be spot on.

I do think the fuzzy in this use case is a lot more beneficial for the search. It may be a matter of presenting the results in a more clear way to show the search is fuzzy, so that users can use it to their advantage.


FrontierNav Update (2016-03-12)

Only one real change today.

  • You can now navigate to the first result by pressing enter. No need to use the mouse. It also means you can go back and forth between results using the keyboard (backspace to go back).

Preview