I've once again decided to begin work on developing a game engine for Sword Fantasy. I've decided to start with Haaf's Game Engine, and hopefully I'll have some rudimentary version of the game engine running. The goal is to finish the game engine before moving on to Sword Fantasy. My goals:
1. Implement a working collision detection engine, either by using an existing one or writing my own.
2. Work on loading screens, menus, narration, message boxes, inventory screens and so on.
3. Obviously, implement some text file parser into the engine for maps, scripts, AI behaviour and savegames.
4. Implement a savegame system. (This will probably more of a between areas kind of thing since I intend for Sword Fantasy to be linear in fashion. I'm not fond of backtracking through a game.) This aims to eventually have a flag system so that if you want to backtrack, you can, although the game will have a mission selector.
5. Implement a physics engine. This is the tricky one. I know there are good ones out there - I am currently looking at Box2D and Chipmunk. I think I lack the skill to implement one - and since it's unimportant or more of a luxury, I'll probably skip this goal if it means I'll actually finish the engine. I know that having one of these will eventually afford me fun puzzles, great graphics and awesome tools with which to build fun levels. However, if it will cost me too much time and effort to implement one, I'll stick with lame math. :P
6. Make a rudimentary game. Obviously, making the engine doesn't equal making a game - and since I don't have the confidence to pull Sword Fantasy off yet, I'll be making a simpler similar game to test and demo my final completed merged engine.
As for development timeline:
End of September 2008: Swords + Sticks with rudimentary menu, loading process and exactly one level.
End of December 2008: Swords + Sticks with menus and options (hopefully with gamepad support - since it is meant for gamepads, although the control scheme will work well with keyboards - mice support will come eventually and hopefully the game will scale well to more than one resolution, so some rudimentary error prone option will be around I guess) that save OR inventory, save game system and (hopefully) a repertoire of five levels
I don't expect to finish anything.