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1  Game Development / Game Mechanics / Re: Getting into multi-threading. on: 2014-08-18 14:32:44
The trick with multithreading is to have a fairly simple communication model with the data used in the treads. That is there is not a lot to synchronize because each thread is using almost 100% "thread local" data or immutable data. Commutation is done with a producer consumer queues. It works pretty well.

For a game.. well i can't really see it making much difference for an indie game. We are not talking AAA titles here and we are probably not overly taxing the GPU either. So a simple game loop may be all you need and it some make life very simple.

I run a game engine thread and a graphics thread and the are not synchronized. "Snap shots" of the state are sent to the graphics thread. Its quite a bit more complicated than normal game loop. 
2  Discussions / Miscellaneous Topics / Re: Life is like a strategy game sort off on: 2014-08-06 16:01:31
Define success.
3  Discussions / Miscellaneous Topics / Re: What I did today on: 2014-08-06 15:00:08
I finally dusted off some game code and realized that i have been working on it on and off for almost 10 years!

I should probably finish it sometime. Oh and i decided to refactor it Cheesy
4  Game Development / Networking & Multiplayer / Re: Moving from a String based approach? on: 2014-07-30 11:49:03
Whatever you do, DON'T use CORBA. You would be better off stabbing yourself in the face with a blunt axe.

Yes i have used it extensively in the telecoms i once worked at. God i hope they moved on by now.

Seriously what is wrong with plain text. It is much much easier to debug since network inspection tools work out of the box. Performance is almost never needed and even if it is in the future i would always have a plain text fallback/debug mode.
 
5  Discussions / General Discussions / Re: So... state of the art 3D "engines" in Java on: 2014-07-30 08:36:49
Everyone i know uses Unity. So i dont' think anyone really thinks about it anymore. The few people not using unity seem to be using the steam one, whatever its called.

I always wondered what was wrong with scene graphs. I know they are still used a bit for CAD software.

I have found for my own stuff, opengl is so easy to just have a pretty basic ordered rendering list. Its really simple. The hard part would be adding GUI elements, and i use TWL for that. Of course i don't need to push the boundaries of what can be done. So no unlimited worlds or metatextures or anything like that. 
6  Discussions / General Discussions / Re: Component Systems: Artemis style systems vs. traditional fat entities on: 2014-07-28 13:38:20
Well i always think these debates are pretty Meh. But i still read them.

I mostly had issues with what problem Entity stuff solved, as in i couldn't see the point all that much. I assumed because i didn't understand them. Turn out i did. Also turns out when the right problem came along then it did become clear what they are good for. I should also note i didn't use it for performance, since i got a few clusters i can use with over 5k cores. But it made the code small and fairly compact.

For smaller indie games however its less clear how it helps. Its up there with writing an engine. Write a game, not an engine. No one else is going to use it anyway.
7  Discussions / General Discussions / Re: Component Systems: Artemis style systems vs. traditional fat entities on: 2014-07-22 11:36:22
Well i am going to chime in and have my say...

I am using a Entity like system. Technically it is a Entity-attribute-value system. I think these things can work well for the right kind of problem.

The only 2 game cases i can think of are RPGs and MMOs. In both there are just huge amounts of different things yet the relative number of behaviours over all those things is small.

I am not using it for a game, but for work and have the same pattern. Lots and lots of different things where things can even change to be other things, yet only a fairly small set of behaviours over all possible things. I also need to be able to many cores.

So far its working out well. Java kind of suxs a little for cache coherency, but not much since the data size of entity's can change at runtime and would probably need attributes referenced anyway.
8  Game Development / Performance Tuning / Re: Can someone explain what is going on with this square rooting? on: 2014-07-18 12:04:13
You really really really shouldn't try to fix performance when you don't have performance issues. About the only time sqrt is going to matter in performance is if you do software lighting and transformations. Which these days you shouldn't be doing. At least not much.

Also you are doing microbenchmarks which are almost always wrong.
9  Game Development / Newbie & Debugging Questions / Re: Slow FPS Problems on: 2014-07-18 12:01:20
rar file? Is this a 90s warz site?

Cut it down to the smallest example you can. We are not going to read your whole project.
10  Game Development / Networking & Multiplayer / Re: How the structure of a multiplayer game should look like? on: 2014-05-16 07:12:25
No amount of networking magic will eliminate latency. For a signal traveling at the speed of light to get to where i am to NZ and back (say playing against my brother) takes 133ms. Actual pings are about 320-350ms.

The trick is have game play that is not sensitive to that sort of latency (see for example Eve online) or make sure people are much more local to each other. But even with the same ISP it is hard to do better than about 40-50ms because of network setup most ISPs use.

For most games that is not a problem and our primitive monkey brains adapt pretty well. But that sort of latency would make games like Marvel Super Heroes almost unplayable. At 60FPS  you have 16.6ms between frames. Basically i can't see such a game working outside a lan.

Of course you could change the networking to be higher level. ie packets say what combo you just did. Not individual movements or key presses. You could change the game play to be a little slower placed.

I would tend to use a peer to peer lock step networking model for a game like this. But with only loose lockstep. ie let slower clients fall behind the faster ones.
11  Discussions / General Discussions / Re: How do you keep profanity out of highscore boards? on: 2014-05-15 08:18:40
Also you can't stop it. You can only police it. Oh and what languages are you supporting Cheesy. Profanity in other languages is pretty common as well.

Its like piracy. If you get popular enough for it happen. You did something right. Until that point. Don't worry about it.
12  Game Development / Newbie & Debugging Questions / Re: Encouraged model file format on: 2014-05-15 08:16:00
My format is literally the way i keep the data in memory. So i have a 2 load paths, load cached binary version, load slow full version that then also saves the memory image as a cached binary version.
13  Game Development / Game Mechanics / Re: [Math] Kinetic energy of impact between two moving objects on: 2014-05-14 15:37:30
A perfect antimatter drive puts all the mass energy of the antimatter/matter into kinetic energy. So a 99% c with a gamma of 7 means that a 1 kg projectile needs 7kg of matter/antimatter to accelerate to that speed.

That is 6x10^17J or a 1GW power plant running for 20 years.
14  Discussions / Miscellaneous Topics / Re: Is our Universe Simulatable? on: 2014-05-12 12:14:40
Yay.. statistical modeling is my day job. I simulate the universe. Oh wait i only simulate evolution in finite populations. :/
15  Game Development / Game Mechanics / Re: [Math] Kinetic energy of impact between two moving objects on: 2014-05-12 12:03:42
The trick with using a "easy" frame of reference is that it makes non closed systems easy to deal with. That is the problem with using a different frame of reference. A wall can bring  momentum in and out of a system. If the wall is at zero speed. You no longer need care.

Typically for collisions the correct frame is the center of mass frame as the easiest. Since an unmovable wall has effectively infinite mass. Its rest frame is the correct one.

In games almost all "collisions" are not really closed systems. Seriously hack physics typically ends up as better more fun game play anyway.
16  Discussions / General Discussions / Re: Oracle wins copyright for the Java APIs on: 2014-05-10 13:33:42
I don't really see a big difference with this and well what other vendors have claimed over the years. In particular even some of the  GPL people (in particular  RS) asserts that linking to a library  (via a api) constitutes a derived work.
17  Game Development / Game Mechanics / Re: [Math] Kinetic energy of impact between two moving objects on: 2014-05-10 13:15:27
Physics results are will be the same no matter what frame of reference you use. So "cheat" and use the one that is the easiest. You can all sorts of math to prove that physics is the same in difference reference frames and that's all fun. but if you don't' really care, just use the simplest frame of reference.
18  Discussions / General Discussions / Re: Value Types Proposal for Java on: 2014-05-07 13:43:43
I must admit that i don't really see me using anything outside mapped objects in bytebuffers. I also would expect more C like behaviour with something called a struct. ie no Constructors ever. But then if there are references in the struct?
19  Game Development / Newbie & Debugging Questions / Re: Are HashMaps bad for Entity-Component-System Architectures? on: 2014-05-06 18:26:41
HashMaps can be very fast. In many cases as fast as and array. The random access can hurt somethings. But mostly don't worry about. If you don't have some profiling results showing that your maps are your problem, don't don't optimize it. And if it did become a problem there are a number of alternatives from java.util. that can just be dropped in.

If you want key value lookup. Just use a hash table.
20  Game Development / Game Mechanics / Re: Moving at a constant speed along a B├ęzier Curve on: 2014-05-05 14:51:37
I have done this accurately enough and fairly fast with just short 3rd order Gaussian quadrature integration, and doing a stepwise pre integration when the curve is created for a "global scale". Its plenty accurate enough for games. I use Hermite splines.

There is no short cut, there are proofs of this out there that there is no simple formula. 
21  Discussions / General Discussions / Re: [Web Games] What is the best second language? on: 2014-05-02 13:13:26
To summarise. Yea javascript or something that uses javascript under the hood won't be the wrong choice.
22  Discussions / General Discussions / Re: [Web Games] What is the best second language? on: 2014-05-02 13:11:37
True, very true. However i feel the academic divide is more fundamental and that for a lot of languages (not just DSL), it is the academic divide that matters.

The best way to see the academic divide is look at what most of the people using the language do with it. If its write that languages compiler, you have found the problem.

And by divide i mean people who care more about some abstract something or other, that than just getting code out that works. There may be ugly bits. But it works!
23  Discussions / General Discussions / Re: Where to learn about integrated circuits and such on: 2014-05-02 12:06:41
arduino board? I have 5 of them and they are easy and fun and cheap. You don't even need to get a soldering iron. But starting there and say adding some sensors etc are a really good place to start IMO. For more advanced stuff try putting a micro AVR (the 8 pin ones) on a bread board and get it going. With clocks and stuff you may want to try some discrete logic first from the 74 series. Last time i was in the US, Radio Shack still sold them. Analog? Well then a op amp circuit say to make your earphones louder or a "burger" speaker. 

Also if you have a little more cash there is always FPGAs which i had fun with in UNI. This does require a *lot* more work. But still manageable. 

In all cases there is a lot of reading and learning needed. Arduinos have lots on the internet. I learnt lots of this from books, some quite expensive. I guess there should be a lot online.
24  Discussions / General Discussions / Re: [Web Games] What is the best second language? on: 2014-05-02 11:58:59
I get lots done on time. That why I have yet to get fired and have a reason to work on games for a living Cheesy

Lisp is in fact pretty cool out of the academic languages. But yea there is a big divide that typically has more to do with tool chains and just tools than the languages.
25  Discussions / General Discussions / Re: [Web Games] What is the best second language? on: 2014-05-01 20:54:38
Be a real man. Learn Lisp.
26  Game Development / Game Mechanics / Re: Difficult game logi with Entity systems? on: 2014-04-29 11:24:17
We are trying something different from actors. Yes the "can i do this" message is probably the way we are leaning. But it ends up being a distributed transaction protocol more or less.
27  Game Development / Game Mechanics / Re: Difficult game logi with Entity systems? on: 2014-04-28 12:00:53
Well its not a game, its an agent experiment. I also have some clusters to use on this. Like about 5-10 thousand cores if need be. I used a game example because its more accessible and well NDAs.
28  Discussions / General Discussions / Re: Suggest me a game for teaching purpose :/ on: 2014-04-28 11:57:45
It really depends on expected audience.  Tic tac toe can be hard for new programmers and boring for everyone else. Add networking and people without networking experience find it hard. Single player pong has the nice properly that its easy to extend game play.

There is always lemmings if you have good "animation" infrastructure available and they are competent at using said libraries.

TWL has a lemmings version as a demo.
29  Game Development / Game Mechanics / Re: Difficult game logi with Entity systems? on: 2014-04-27 23:15:48
I should say its not single threaded. Any one system does not deal with more than one entity at a time so i don't need synchronization between them because they could all be updated on different threads.

So a System only can, by contract change the values of the entity it is on right now. Never others. Others are changed in previous versions var a message that never fails to apply. Now however i have messages that can fail.

So let me try better to explain. My gun entity, is activated. This has the effect of applying power drain from the ship and damage to the target. Both the ship and target are different entities that are not on the same thread and therefore can't just be "updated". Or  some consistent type of synchronization is needed.
30  Game Development / Game Mechanics / Re: Difficult game logi with Entity systems? on: 2014-04-27 16:38:49
But if i have 2 things happen, then both end up using more power than is available. The problem is that 3 entities need to be updated atomically as a transaction. ie if it fails roll back. But its not clear the easiest way to implement that. A system does not take 3 entities in at once. So you can't just have a system.   
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