Game Dev – Late Night Diner

Update: Fixed the images, they should work now.

Here we go…. back to the project, back to something we wanted to get back to for a long time.  My posts will sporadically updates and this is going to be a raw start with the artwork.  This project is mainly done for passion and fun, I like fun. I may repeat myself a few times and I will rectify with future posts. The project is done between myself and my colleague, so were sharing the roles, However, I’ll mostly be doing the artwork and animation, he will do the programming and audio, the game design duties will be shared between us, which I am happy about and further ado, let’s go.

10th April 2016 

The first moment  when I reopened the files for Late Night Diner and my reaction was the same below.


It was scary few moments of getting my head around them and getting up to speed with them.

Over the weekend I went back to Late Night Diner with my good friend and colleague,  we started a little Jam to start working on this game. This project is a passion project and fun for us and I like fun. We love this game and sadly we never got to finish the original version for a few factors, the software we used was tough to use, as the restrictions was really frustrating and  lack of knowledge to team with the software didn’t help.  The team always wanted to go back to it, but work and life took over and fast forward to now, we are all far apart doing our own things.

My friend jumped onto the Game maker engine and got into the swing of remaking the game from scratch. I jumped onto Flash and fired up the old files and started to create new animations.  As mentioned before the original game had a limit of 3 sprites for each action, that was a bad mistake, so this time, we don’t have that limit anymore and will add more frames,  however, this does not mean I will go crazy with the animations. I will still limit myself. 🙂

Welcome to my sprite sheet land,   I do want to redo those arms, however there are other characters need new iterations and I will circle back to this alien.

Here is the first version for the enter animation and the sucking on straw animation. Probably will refine it. But first I must refine that throwing up animation.

A lot of the old artwork really does need an overhaul, the UI/UX  and the icons are bad, again going back to this project, will have redesign the front end and ingame UI/UX

See you next time.

17th April 2016

Back to LDN and make a start on the sky at night and the cats out of the bag as my colleague made an announcement on twitter that we have resumed work on the project. He is happy, I am happy, now, we got to finish the game, more people will be watching for use to finish it….. No pressure then. 🙂

Created a placeholder the sky,

Tried sideways and it didn’t really work when it scrolled

So we did it vertically and it works for the time being.

The purpose  of the background is that it scrolls until dawn and until the level finishes.

The other aspects it will have is a moon sprite  scrolling  from left to right,  another sprite for the stars and lastly to make it still feel like we’re on earth, an outside world a mountain range a car park and anywhere else in the world as we can swap them to other locations from around the world.

On top of that we can  have additional sprites of of the outside world.

Like an alien ship landing, a slow moving Horde of zombies and anything that spring to mind, but these are feature creeps and belong on the Would be nice to have list. Perhaps, we could revist  it later and they could be added later to the game.


22nd April 2016

The zombie was actually the first character created for the game  and it was done in one night, he never was changed.  All the other characters had a little thought behind them: The Vampire biker, Alien Surfer, Demon Samurai, all had some type of character to them and the zombie didn’t have much of a character and it really needs to be a characters in itself. I wanted to go back to the zombies for ages, he looked basic and needed sprucing up.

The picture below you can see the original 2011 version on the left , the a reworked version in the middle and on the far right is where my art is currently…. It’s two different era’s of artwork clashing and I don’t like it and it doesn’t work, trying to retrofit artwork old and new is odd. Too many bits on it annoy me from the old one and I think I am bored of green zombie.

The 2016 zombies look and colour I actually prefer, what I shall do next  is create a new designed and refreshed version of the zombie.

 A few minutes of messing around with the assets that I had, I came up with this, yeah, I like the look and colour.

I would not use this as is, however, as a starting base, it’s pretty good start.

If I can save the green version of the zombie I will try. But I won’t hold my hopes up, I got other characters to sort out.

23 April 2016

Evolution of the Diner Zombie, so, so much better.

Worked on to create new mouths, side by side with the old versions.  You can see the difference with an iteration and little more time spent on it.

After some work on the zombie, spent most of the time sorting out and organising the layers, as all the assets where created on a couple of  layers and they needed  to be ready to import into Flash.  Once I have fully sorted out the layers, I shall work on to create the hair, work on the eye expressions, work on some extra detail and add some contrast to the skin as it looks flat and needs more contrast.

I must sort the naming convention on all the layer and get it finished.

Looking at the new artwork,  it does look better and changing the shirt colour was the right choice, as it has made a big difference.  I am much happier with the teeth and eyes, the older ones annoyed me

Here we are with the current version of the zombie, the glasses are something I had made before and I probably won’t use.

I really do look forward to this game coming out and you playing it, because I like the game and I am having fun creating it. The next step I highly look forward to as  I cannot wait to start animating the new zombie.

I want to tell you about the other stuff we’re working on, however…..

24th April 2016

Here is the next update of the zombie, still a work in progress. It looks like he had a rough night out, need to zombie him up further.  I think I really need to work on his stare.

Much happier with how much the character has progressed and looks. The character feels looks more like a  character to me now.  The hair was tough to do,  as I have not done hair for little while in illustrator, the previous attempts of the hair where not great, and what I got now, I like. I am going to work on the hair a little more, it needs more work as it needs to be little more messy and take out the gradient and add more define hair.

Going to work on the hands next and change the outlines to brown, play around with more blood stains and work on the collar a little more. Also, I am going to work on the mouth assets further, the edges need to be darker and I think I need to darken the sockets, they don’t look deep enough.

Further assets need to be created, like sucking on a straw, entering and leaving, throwing up.

There is going to be more animations added to the characters, because I know I have forgotten to do an animation and every time we remember, we add to the asset list and then use that list for the other characters.

I was so tempted to do some animation with the zombie, but I know it was not ready and that would’ve been a bad choice, as I really need to focus on finishing the zombie assets.

And the Layers are sorted for now.

A blast from the past.

I went through some old stuff and found these title cards for the characters, I still want to have some sort of introduction and blurb for each of the characters, again that is on the would be nice to have list.

When I last worked on the project, I forgot I did these, I was wanting to go somewhere with, again, I have a vague memory of this and I liked where I was going with it. I might revisit it and do something with it and use it for inspiration.  Also one note I must make to myself. NO MORE IMPACT FONT. I keep getting dragged back into it.

One of the other steps is to redesign the Frontend for the game and collaborate with my colleague with it,I genuinely like creating front ends for games.

Those food icons, they really are dull and horrible. The food on the menu will need to change as I really don’t like them,  I think it was down to being a rush job of getting it done and not really having an idea how the icons should have look. Since I’ve had experience creating a lot of icons with GLitchspace, I am going to change these and make improvements to the overall design, they may go in a simpler looking flat colour direction. I want to all the icons to look  simple and clean.

The food, was ok, but some of them really need to be changed and rethought, while the others will have a good update done to them. To me the don’t look great. Again this was down to time.

The next versions of these foods and drinks, need more oomph, a little perspective, chunkier looking, essentially making them look more impressive.

All those food assets sprites need an overhaul. They look plain and flat the need to pop.

I will have to get fresh reference images and create new ones, perhaps moving away from some of the old types of food and create new types.

26th April 2016

Tonights task was to create throw up face sprite and I’m happy with it.

The throw up face was something I had wanted to do for a while as the characters needed it. I did a throw up animation with the alien, but I was not a hundred percent happy with it, as was missing that one bit, where when the cheeks fill up just before the throwing up…… You know what I’m on about.

Since I was working on the Zombie sprites, I decided to experiment and create that missing bit and with the outcome of the sprites I’m happy with it, then it is going to be used as a template to apply  the rest of the characters.

The other animation assets  created was the drinking animation. I forgot that all the monsters eat and drink each others food and the characters need a drinking animation and  they didn’t in the old version  of the game.. That was some oversight from myself,I can’t believe we missed.

Below is not the animation sequence , it is placing the different assets together to see which one works well. The advantage with illustrator is that I can create the separate head parts on different layers, then mix and match the assets. I will have stick up as screenshot of the assets separated.

I may need to create one more image in the sequence when the mouth opens up to throw up.

2nd May 2016

Set up the animation layers for the character and the set up took  a bit of time as I was a little rusty with flash and animation.  I am not an animator and I do not consider myself one, however, I do enjoy trying to do some.  So animators, please don’t scream, if you see a horror show, please don’t hate me, just message me with tips of improvement.

Here a rough animation of the zombie throwing up. It’s going to be a few days of animation, fixing and tweaking, adding extra frames on top of that a bit of relearning with animation.

First version iteration of the zombie animation is done and I decided to show the vomit sample, hey I am proud of it. The next step is to fix and tweak the animations  I am sure I will have an iteration up posted here in the future. 🙂

I must say this is ramblings of a mad man. Forgive me weird posting.

Tata, for now. 🙂


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