Something happened last night. When Fluffy called to wish me a night, it was 22:15. I said I would go to bed "soon". Somewhere around 23:41, I realized that I just lost an hour of my life and I really, really should be in bed. Needless to say, I was obsessing about my computer game. :) And I did a half hour of cleaning yesterday before I programmed.
Last night, I got the start of the voice overs working in code. It generates them using mbrola or festival voices and play the role of the ship's computer, traffic and police controls, and general announcements. I'm hoping to have a hundred little phrases between the four, including a couple that are "voice over plots" as the computers talk to each other as the countdown continues.
In the back story, you were "volunteered" to take the bomb out because you were the only one who was left on the dock as they tried to find someone. Mainly because you still haven't figured out how to turn on your brand new ship. This leads, of course, to some of the voice overs since in the middle of you running out of time, the computer asks if you want to register your ship. And, if I get the module code in this weekend, if you lose one of your modules, it will helpfully say "Door is ajar" when what it meant was "you just lost your right engine."
Well, that's the goal of course.
I also added a stress rating which is just a little measure of how panicked you "should" be at some point. Basically just a [0...1] number with 1 being "boned." I'm using that for the background color, as you get higher stress, the background turns red. Little touch, but it helps with the progression.
And finally, procedural background noise. It was an idea I wanted to always try and so I finally got it working. Basically, I grabbed a bunch of short samples (a GPL'd drum kit from Hydrogen) and threw them in a directory. Then, every time I reset the background music, I grab eight random samples and give them a random beat rhythm (bit flags, different for each sample). At the beginning, it only uses the first 4 bits in a slow sound but as the stress goes up, it speeds it up and uses more beats until you get a rapid background noise.
For a first attempt, it sounds pretty cool. Almost jazzy but not quite. Sometimes, kind of jarring, but I thought that would work out. And, every few seconds, it flips one of the bits for the rhythm, so it slowly changes as you go through the game. Then, as the countdown stops... silence. :)