This week I had a small look at a minimal layout for a state-driven side scroller. I don't have much interest in creating a side scroller, yet when I look at games the like of Super Mario, Super Metroid, Castelvania and Limbo, I can't help but appreciate them.
A state-driven side scroller is a side scroller driven by just that, states. Entities within the world would hold various states, and would act according to the state that they are currently in. These states run on a finite state machine, a machine that changes it's state depending on conditions fed into it. For example, a player walking would switch the player's character to a walking animation, jumping to a jumping animation etc. Though finite state machines are often used for AI implementation, an AI enemy would prepare to attack if the player is within an attack range - idle if this isn't the case so on and so forth. It's a simple yet effective way of implementing artificial intelligence into a game. .
Finite state machines aren't unique to side scrollers, and so it would be beneficial to me if I learned how to set them up properly. I could see it being used in all projects that require an artificial intelligence of any type.
Specifically in this session, I looked over a helpful technique in the Unity engine called key frame animation. As a programmer, I could see myself likely using this a lot if I'm working on a project by myself, else I'd rather let someone more experienced take over that for me. However, because key frame animation is relatively simple to use, likely hard to master, I will try to invest some time into learning how to effectively key frame animate. Hopefully I will have something to show for it in my own projects. Perhaps even for this upcoming project.
I'm currently working on one of my assignment briefs, and so I would like to try to implement key-frame animation in this project, however because of assessment strain I likely won't be able to.