Stuck at the annoying “Installing 0%” progress on the Xbox One (XBO) when trying to play these games for the first time due to a game-specific 6GB game patch (I’m not referring to the XBO Day One Patch)? This message appears as soon as you insert the disc but before it bothers to install from it.
Here’s a little trick:
- In XBO Settings either disconnect your WiFi or unplug your Ethernet lead to the box
- Sign-out of the XBO
- Now return to the home screen
- Hi-light your game/disk icon (BF4 or Forza)
- Press Start (or whatever its called now) on the controller
- Select Cancel Install
- Highlight the disk icon
- Click to start the install again
The game will now install from the DVD. When its ready to play, reconnect your network and sign-in. You’ll still need to patch but it won’t be as big nor get stuck.
This week at work we were visited by an agile expert who presented a workshop on agile task estimation techniques such as:
During the Planning Poker segment we were to use Fibonacci sequence poker cards to estimate a hypothetical project were the aim was to create a series of items made from folded paper including:
- Simple helicopter
- Paper plane
- Decorated plane
- decorated bird
- and so on…
Having made many Origami flapping birds, cranes, frogs, flowers when I was in my teens, I eagerly raised my hand when the question was asked:
“Has anyone ever made paper items before?”
Before I realised what was going on I was being passed a sheet of paper and told to make a paper airplane in front of everyone whilst being timed. Normally I don’t like this level of attention but it was all in good fun.
I started off well, remembering to fold the paper in half but unfortunately the only design that came to mind was probably the most obvious from my early youth. I continued to fold and crease, trying my best to keep it neat all awhile the imaginary tick-tick-tick from a stopwatch from afar encouraging me to go faster.
I kept at it till it resembled something that could fly at which point it was ready to give it its maiden flight. I picked it up, raised it high above my head and carefully tossed it with all the grace I could muster into the boardroom skyline, only to watch it gently fall to the table in exactly the same way that feathers don’t.
At which point someone said:
…and this is why developers should not test their own code!
To which we all including myself broke out in hysterics.
Work is proceeding on my space war game (SWG); it would be nice if I came up with a proper name for it but for now SWG shall suffice. For the past couple of weeks I’ve been looking into missile mechanics and shield simulation. For the missiles I simulate fuel load and consumption, albeit crudely, such that the missile has a limited flight time before tumbling into a fit of self-destructing acrobatics accompanied by a flash of yellow sparkles.
A work buddy suggested that I tackle force fields next and he had the good idea to use a ripple effect – the same sort of ripple effect you get when you drop a badger into a lake. There is a very simple algorithm that you can use to produce a variable heightmap for use in a water effect and thought this would be suitable for deforming my shields.
The Update method is called once per frame to update the simulation:
Here’s some shots of the ripple effect:
…and corresponding textured-mesh view:
Then of course I went to apply it to an ellipsoid and I was sort of stumped as to how to deformate a 3D object – something with no edges no less. Realising I was a bit of a buffoon, the obvious answer was not to procedurally modify the mesh via a heightmap but rather use the heightmap as an input into a parallax shader where we can fiddle with the surface normals thus giving the illusion of heightened depth. So I kept my code above for creating the heightmap but I just tossed the mesh modification.
I wanted my shader to be transparent so the alpha component is merely the heightmap value.
Here is a short video of the outcome.
 “2D Water”, http://freespace.virgin.net/hugo.elias/graphics/x_water.htm
Having moved from XNA to Unity3D I thought I would have a play at making a simple space game. I thought this would be a good exercise at procedural asteroid fields; AI; missile simulation and nebula effects whilst learning how to use Unity3D;
The following video shows my games work in progress from a few weekends in Unity.
I must say I am a big fan of Microsoft’s new web front-end for Hotmail – Outlook.com. The UI is very modern, minimalist and fast!
About the only complaint is that any time you browse to outlook.com via a web browser, it will automatically sign you into MS Messenger. Though initially this may not be a problem, I find that you can rapidly reach ridiculous numbers of logons even though you may only consciously be using say one browser at home and another at work. It got so bad that I was even prevented from signing into the desktop Messenger app in Windows Live Essentials. If only there is a way to prevent automatic login.
I recently added a behaviour for steering the ship towards a target destination; thrusting up to cruise speed; followed by a final deceleration step. With a given velocity and breaking deceleration it’s reasonably easy to work at what point to start breaking. This makes it nice to enter a point in orbit around a planet or perhaps a space station.
Next will be to work out an actual orbit based on either a given velocity or how far the orbit should be. Fun days ahead!
Other updates include:
Floating Origin – gets around floating point inaccuracies at high values. Part of the Don’t Move Your Viewpoint–Move the Universe Instead solution.
Eye Candy – engine blast particle system; shadows; light mapping; skybox nebula
Though floating origin works rather well, the next problem is to scale the planets based on how far away they are. “float”s don’t have the precision to otherwise model ranges of the distance from say the Sun to Jupiter and then to model Jupiter’s diameter. It seems the solution is to treat things as continuous sub-scenes. A topic for another day.