Completionist run: 011/365

A short detour

Today, let’s do something different. I’m going to describe in detail what I’m going to do, do it, then write up how I measured up. This is a good thing for two reasons:

  1. I’m going to learn how to estimate and manage my time, which is a Good Thing.
  2. In expertise theory, estimation is a seat-of-your-pants way to gain deep practice.

Furthermore, it is much easier to implement what’s been written down as opposed to doing what I call stream-of-consciousness programming.

Mold

To help me help myself, I’m going to base my articles on this template from now on:

[screenshot of build]
[link to build]
What I want to do today
    1) Core mechanic
    2) How to implement it (+ time estimates)
    3) Potential difficulties
What I was able to do
    1) Checklist (+ time estimate discrepancy)
    2) Explanation for the discrepancy (if any)
Final thoughts
    1) About game design
    2) About me
    3) What I might do tomorrow

Without further ado…


Fig. 1: Link to where the source would be if intellectual property laws ceased to exist

What I want to do today

I’m in the middle of a crunch time project so let’s work on that first.

Core mechanic

Swappable in-game tools for doing various things via SteamVR controllers

How to implement it

  1. [6 minutes] Write a generic tool interface:
    1. Every tool has an input, a function, and an output. So the interface must have three methods: an input method that, when called, stores generic objects in a generic list, an apply method that is mapped over said list, and an output method that returns the mapped over list.
  2. [20 minutes] Write a Duplicate tool:
    1. Upon trigger press, take all GameObjects in its input region and store it in a list.
    2. Upon trigger press again, instantiate all GameObjects in said list at the same transform values relative to the tool before, but now relative to where the tool currently is[^1].
  3. [10 minutes] Write a Destroy tool:
    1. Upon trigger press, apply DestroyImmediate to all objects in the input region.
  4. [15 minutes] Write a tool container script based on VRTK. Make it a functor and attach it to the SteamVR controller GameObjects. Said container script must be able to switch between the Duplicate and Destroy tools.
  5. [30 minutes] Attach a radial menu to each controller. Write a script that calls the switching functionality found in (4).

Estimated time to completion: 1 h 21 m

Potential difficulties

I might not be able to preserve composability, especially when writing the tool functor.

What I was able to do

Checklist

  1. [7.5 m] Done.
  2. [31 m] Done.
  3. [9 m] Done.
  4. [14 m] Failed.
  5. [57 m] Failed.

Time to completion: 1 h 58.5 m

Discrepancy: 37 m

Explanation

I lost steam towards the end of (4) due to having been misled that interfaces cannot be obtained using GetComponent<T>() in Unity3D. Add to that fact that I haven’t read through the whole VR Toolkit library yet.

Final thoughts

About game design

This is a technical issue so there ain’t much to be learned here in terms of design.

About me

What I cannot (or did not) create I cannot understand.

What I might do tomorrow

Probably get this in order.


Glossary

Deliberate/deep practice
the hokey-pokey but useful concept near the getting-a-coach-and-doing-optimised-drills idea in ideaspace
Stream-of-consciousness programming
a series of short but intense typing punctuated by grunts of “What next?”; see Markov chain
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