Well, the TAGAP Day goodies, of course! Not only did I have to record and put together the footage, but I also had to re-do our website's TAGAP 3 section for the occasion. In the past we had just a bunch of screenshots and two videos, but with more content that layout no longer worked, so now the site has a proper TAGAP 3 section, ready for future expansions.
Beyond the trailer work, I've been on a vacation from my (paid) job, so I've been able to work on TAGAP 3 full-time. I split my duties to three fronts; Crafting more cinematics, finishing the last of the space-penguin church levels and creating the missing sound effects.
First off, the cinematics; The particular one I've been working on basically forms the basis for what could be called the 'standard intermission cut-scene'. None of these are the same, sure, but they share the same basic elements, so I've been working on those. One particular shared element – a large landscape shot showcasing the atmosphere domes of Pluto from the outside – is something I've spent ludicrous hours on, but hey, now it looks cool and detailed!
The space penguin church level I've been working on is almost ready; I've been going through the monster placement passes and event scripting, fine-tuning things with each playthrough. There are plenty of cool scripted gags in this one, but I won't say more about it – I don't want to spoil the funny moments! I can say that while the level is –as I mentioned in the previous post – very Castlevania in structure, the way it is populated and scripted lessens that vibe a bit.
And finally, the sound effects. Now that I've finally settled with Sound Forge Pro as my audio editing suite, I've been able to go through the sound effect to-do-list quite fast. Sadly not all of these new, properly fitting sound effects made it in by the trailer recording, so there are few stand-ins from TAGAPs past you can hear in the video. Not many, granted, but a few.
One of the things that bugged me the most about the TAGAP 3 début trailer was that we weren't able to make it 1080p and 60 FPS. The reason why weren't able to go beyond 720p and 30 FPS turned out to be the hard-drive we recorded the game to; It couldn't keep up with the amount of data dumped on it. So, this time we used my new computer (with 16 gigabytes of memory) and recorded everything on it's brand new SSD. The result? 1080p60!
There are a couple of very minor stutters throughout the video and most of them have to do with the way FRAPS, the capture software we used, records things; It splits the video into manageable 4 gigabyte chunks. All you need to do in your video editor then is to smack these files back-to-back on your editing timeline. This is otherwise fine, but there are some minor stutters – mainly on audio track – at the clip transitions. It's something you might not even notice, but I feel it's my duty to mention these.
Again, we took some screengrabs from the video. This time the trailer being 1080p, the screenshots are perhaps the most detailed ones yet! There was no particular reason for selecting these shots, other than they look great;
Music has always been a crucial component of the TAGAP experience and TAGAP 3 is no exception! In fact, one of the key reasons why we chose this particular level for the video was the fact that the song for this level was the most finalized mix of all the demos Petja had at hand at the time. So, without further ado, "Electromagnetic Boogie";
And that's it for now. Have an awesome TAGAP Day 2015!