Saturday, 8 June 2019

New Level Pit UI

Here's what I'm working on at the moment. As previously mentioned, I'm dropping the CEF library for UI and moving to NanoVG, so this is also a good time to redesign the UI for the Pit.

Goals for the new UI:

  • Show pictures of the levels!
    • The level files are pretty small, so these are all rendered locally. It just downloads each file and renders out a screenshot.
  • Pictures for users. I'm using GeoIP flags at the moment, because I don't really want to deal with custom avatars, and I like the international flavour it gives.
    • I hope people are cool with the flags. If it said what city you connected from, that'd probably have to be opt-in for privacy's sake... but I feel like countries will be OK. I'm sure I'll hear about it if people disagree.
  • Better discoverability of levels. The old UI only showed about 12 new levels, and you couldn't scroll or anything.
  • Full keyboard, mouse & gamepad support.
  • Full international text input support. CEF did this well. Might be harder without it, but I think it's important.


  1. waouw it looks so great !!!
    i agree, the flags are cool!

    i can't wait anymore...

  2. Hi guys !

    pending the next monstrous update, i've just published a new level !!!

    Difficulty: 6.5/10

    have fun ;P

    PS: Rob, Do you know, approximately, when the next update will be released?

    1. I'm really bad at deadlines, so I try not to impose them on myself. I know it's nice to have a specific date to look forward to, but if I promise you a release date what will happen is:

      - I'll stress out about releasing the update on time
      - When the date arrives, I'll feel I have to release the update, even if it's half-baked
      - Maybe I just miss the date and disappoint everyone

      Even if you want an estimate rather than a commitment, that's tricky too because the way I work when I'm working on my own stuff is that basically I let my brain work on whatever it wants to work on. Sometimes that's Blackshift and sometimes it's not — and it's almost impossible for me to predict.

      But, although I'm declining to give a timeframe, which must be a little frustrating, what I can do is run through what needs to get done before the update can be released:

      1. New UI needs to be usable. Right now it's looking pretty good everywhere except the level pit, which is still missing a bunch of features.

      2. I need to replace the FMOD audio library with something else. Either I misread the license or they've changed it since I signed, but the current FMOD license has requirements that I'm not prepared to fulfil, so I can't release the game with FMOD.

      3. Secret Feature needs some work.

      OK, I'm bored of the secrecy around Secret Feature. What it is, is I've replaced the level select menu with an overworld map. It's like Mario World :)

  3. oh yeah i understand perfectly... you are totally right !

    your mariolike overworld map in the select level menu is a wonderful idea!!!

    ok, now, we just need to learn to be patient... ;D

  4. new level, today ! 10 Août 2019 !

    bravo to NYNM who has already won it ! ;P

    and sorry for my "manager"... i said "difficulty: 6.5" i think it's at least 7.5 or 8 ! XD

  5. today again, a new level!!! 11 Août 2019 !


  6. Oh Burri !

    your Sheppard is simply GENIUS !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  7. World of Warcraft events will be closed tomorrow, and now you can buy free Warcraft gold coins. ZZWOW will be the best aid station for Warcraft players.