Melee combat

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Post: #1
What would be the best way to do Melee combat?
Or more specifically, melee weaponry combat (swords, knives, staffs)
and not just whack-the-other-person-as-much-and-as-fast-as-possible.
I was thinking like a loop of attacks that moved fluidly into one another, and maybe even have a changing loop like move a has been performed followed by either b, d, or f. Then have the defense have a complementary loop (attack a is countered by defense a or d). But that would probably restrict the input to one or two keys, too fighter arcade game -esque for my taste. Also if you just put all the different attack and defense moves on different keys it would a) take up lots of space and b) be really hard to remember how to do a particular move.

Thoughts?
How would you implement melee weaponry in combat?

oh, and yeah I'm talking about in like a 1st person/ 3rd person action/adventure sort of game, not an arcade fighter one.
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Post: #2
How about using the mouse as an input for a weapon? swing the mouse = swing the sword? Add some weight to it and you've got to learn some good timing and control. Bad timing/control leaves you open to attack. Use the mouse button to switch between a light grip for fast manouverable attacks and a firm grip for blocking and direct, powerful blows. Throw in some keys for footwork.

---Kelvin--
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Post: #3
I like the balance Idea myself. And its pretty easy to implement and not many people use it.

You have a bar that represents Balance. Every attack removes some of your balance and it slowly recharges. The higher your balance the better chance you have to dodge/block an attack.

It creates a very good system of timing, skill, and managing of resources.

Kyle Richter
DragonForged.com
Twitter: @kylerichter
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Luminary
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Post: #4
MGS2 uses the right analog stick for swordplay -- the direction you push the stick corresponds to the direction you slash or thrust. Quite neat and expressive, but not really something you can do on a computer.

Beyond that, the standard seems to be a combo system -- you have two or three basic controls (eg. punch/kick/grab or right-hand/left-hand) and pushing them in different orders with different timings causes different attack sequences.
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Post: #5
I've actually been thinking a lot about the same thing for my game. I haven't really come up with any great concepts yet as improving the combat part of my game is not the prority right now. But if you've got a PS2 I can suggest two games which both use that type of hit-the-right-button(s)-in-sequence method that you might want to check out: Legacy of Kain: Defiance and Mortal Kombat: Shaolin Monks.

Both have different emphasis - Legacy of Kain has lots of puzzle solving as well as the fighting whereas Mortal Kombat is very fighting focussed. The reason I mention them is that I enjoy the fighting in both even though they're a bit different. Legacy of Kain is definitely the simpler combat engine of the two.

Oh, and I really like Kelvin's idea. If you could pull of something like that it would be really unique!
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Post: #6
I just thought of another thing:
Code:
Calculate a vector for the path of the mouse.
Average over maybe 2 or 3 steps.
If the path changes by more than say 45deg (dot product is easy), end the swing.

With this method, you can control how wide you swing your weapon. Graceful mouse arcs translate into long, deep-cutting slashes. Irratic, bent paths translate into short jabs, stabs, or lunges.

---Kelvin--
15.4" MacBook Pro revA
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zKing
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Post: #7
While these more involved control systems could be cool, I'd just make sure that there's some justification for the extra button tap dancing. If you make someone press 4 buttons to do a simple sword swing that they need to do over and over you're likely to get complaints about the controls being sluggish or tiresome.

On another topic: there was a PC game that had you swing the sword with mouse movement... can't remember the name. Wasn't too bad, but it got to be a bit much after playing for a while; it just felt kind of mushy.
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Post: #8
zKing Wrote:On another topic: there was a PC game that had you swing the sword with mouse movement... can't remember the name. Wasn't too bad, but it got to be a bit much after playing for a while; it just felt kind of mushy.

Die By The Sword, I believe?

I never could get the hang of it...
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zKing
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Post: #9
ThemsAllTook Wrote:Die By The Sword, I believe?

I never could get the hang of it...

Ya, I think that was it. I remember that the game play leaned heavily on that gimik, it required (for the time) a beefy machine and there's wasn't much to the game. It was kind of puzzle like in many places and you fought one on one a lot of the time.
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Post: #10
kelvin Wrote:
Code:
Calculate a vector for the path of the mouse.
Average over maybe 2 or 3 steps.
If the path changes by more than say 45deg (dot product is easy), end the swing.

Huh *whoosh*

anyway, I came up with something:

Any arcs/lines made by the mouse are turned into a swing of the sword of a similair/equal direction (horizontal line = horizonal swing). Vertical/near vertical lines drawn from the bottom up would be translated into stabs/jabs
Blocks would be based on the cursor's position as such:
[Image: gameplayconcept.jpg]

The mouse would have other functions, so I was thinking about either having attacks occur when the right mouse button is pressed down and blocks when both buttons are pressed down, OR have caps lock engage "combat mode" and then in combat mode have attacks occur by default and blocks occur when the left button is pressed down. I'm leaning towards the second.

What do you think?
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Post: #11
Dont forget a lot of users only have one button mice I recently upgraded mine to the new apple one, but I find its often overlooked in games.

Kyle Richter
DragonForged.com
Twitter: @kylerichter
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Post: #12
I usually loathe the seemingly endless contests around here, but this whole combat thing really sounds like a perfect theme.

Land of the Dead uses two different types of swings for their melee weapons, one is a wide swing, and the other is a frontal jab, which tends to knock the opponent down. Works great!

Marathon's melee added more damage if you were running toward your enemy.
So don't leave that out, since even in real combat you will do more damage if you put the full weight of your body behind the attack.

X-men Legends uses, combos. Basically you have punch, kick, and jump as actions. But when you combo them you get mutiple attacks or just pure power, I think its usually a combo with a punch that was a power attack, rather than the punch which added a few more swings or took on more than one attacker.
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Post: #13
Warning OT:
As far as the contest are concerned I havent really gotten into any yet. I might do next years uDevGames, but I tend to work a lot slower then the other people around here. If I were to do an "outnumbered" game or an "Escort Wing" I think it would take me about 3 months.

Maybe I just need to start stockpiling my reusable code.

Kyle Richter
DragonForged.com
Twitter: @kylerichter
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Post: #14
kodex Wrote:Dont forget a lot of users only have one button mice I recently upgraded mine to the new apple one, but I find its often overlooked in games.
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---Kelvin--
15.4" MacBook Pro revA
1.83GHz/2GB/250GB
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Post: #15
LOL
yeah I have a wireless two button mouse with a scrolly thing
I hate the apple mouses, they are so small.
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