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1  Discussions / Miscellaneous Topics / Re: Going to China for 2 months on: 2016-05-23 08:16:30
旅途愉快!  Grin
2  Discussions / Miscellaneous Topics / Re: 4D shooter? on: 2016-05-12 08:22:53
Well, pipedraming is the first step.... Ok, and the only step for a lot of people (introspection enabled  Roll Eyes)

My personal 4D pipedream was more about a puzzle-exploration game, sort of like Portal or Antichamber.
3  Discussions / Miscellaneous Topics / Re: Shareware, copyright and fangames on: 2016-05-12 08:20:08
but you knew this could very happen, before you started I assume

Indeed I did. Simply renaming stuff and doing some minor cosmetic changes would get me in the clear. Just like those guys who wanted to make an Aliens game and could not secure the license so they had to repurpose their game into something about shooting demons in hell.... Wink

you thinking you can save yourself by limiting your assets to the shareware stuff is cute Tongue

Nah, I don't think it'll protect me, I made the decision to limit myself to those assets first, so as to simplify the content and not drown in too much stuff to do (It is a learning project, after all. My intention is to use the framework I develop to create my own thing afterwards).

The musings on the impact of shareware/freeware content on fan projects came afterwards.

4  Discussions / Miscellaneous Topics / Re: 4D shooter? on: 2016-05-11 17:54:47
4-dimensions to a 3-dimensional game would be like FEZ's 3-dimensions are to its 2-dimensional gameplay.

I've toyed with the idea too, and what I keep coming back to is the FEZ solution, that is, to have the "extra" axis rotate in steps, so as not to have to render all the possible intermediate states.

To follow up the FEZ example, in that game the third axis rotates in 90º increments, which results in 4 different 2-dimensional versions of the map to play with (the top and bottom faces of the level are ignored).

If the axis could be moved to an arbitrary position, it would result in a virtually infinite number of versions of the map to move about, which would make gameplay design unmanageable, and possibly extremely confusing.

My guess is that in a 3-d/4-d game, you'd have a larger number of 3-d versions of the map to visit when rotating, and the trick would be to have entities (for example, enemies) moving about in a way that makes sense regarding the "face" of the hypercube they're still on.

Click to Play

I love 4-dimensional geometry and its weirdness. Hope you get somewhere interesting with your project.
5  Discussions / Miscellaneous Topics / Re: Shareware, copyright and fangames on: 2016-05-11 17:38:18
I guess I'd get in trouble if my game miraculously becomes popular, if only because of the mandate to protect their IP lest it sets a precedent.

But seeing how me actually finishing the game is possibly less likely than it being popular, I don't think I'll have to worry Tongue
6  Discussions / Miscellaneous Topics / Re: Shareware, copyright and fangames on: 2016-05-11 08:51:25
I actually did write to Zenimax a few years back when I began working on the project, making it clear that it is merely a learning project with no intention to ever be sold.

Never got a reply.

Back when I sent that email, John Carmack was still part of id Software and had given his blessing to the DooM Roguelike project, which hinted at a relaxed attitude towards fan games.

Now the environment over at id has changed a lot, particularly due to the new game, so all bets are off I guess.

In any case, I was wondering more about the implications of referencing content released for free (shareware in this case), as it would mean that the case of the fan game hurting sales would have less weight.

For example, the Classic Doom3 mod, which re-made the original DooM game using the DooM3 engine, only implemented the shareware episode, I guess to avoid being shut down for providing access to paid content.
7  Discussions / Miscellaneous Topics / Shareware, copyright and fangames on: 2016-05-10 10:51:27
I've been working on a DooM fangame for quite sometime (for a certain value of "working", anyway), and, considering the upcoming DooM 4 release, I keep being concerned about Zenimax dropping by to crush me.

One decision I recently made (also in order to reduce content to develop and see if I finally finish the damn thing) has been to restrict myself to the contents of the DooM shareware, that is, only use monsters, maps and items present in that release (Which encompasses the first episode of the original DooM game).

Mind you, all assets are my own creation, inspired by the originals, I'm not ripping textures or anything.

So I'm wondering if using IP from a shareware title has any bearing on the rocky situation a free fangame is in already.

I do know shareware is still protected under copyright laws, I'm just wondering if it would make a difference to litigious IP holders, or if there's any precedent regarding the use of IPs from shareware products.


Oh, and I'm ready to swap assets if I ever get hit with the "cease and desist" hammer. I'm not naive enough to think my fangame will somehow be protected or something if the IP holders come calling.
8  Java Game APIs & Engines / Engines, Libraries and Tools / Re: LWJGL3 - Precise Gamepad Input on: 2016-04-28 12:02:56
Use libgdx I'd say.

libGDX looks great, but I'm interested in a lower level approach right now.  Grin
9  Java Game APIs & Engines / Engines, Libraries and Tools / Re: LWJGL3 - Precise Gamepad Input on: 2016-04-26 11:17:35
So it would be preferable to use an alternate libray for joystick handling then?
10  Java Game APIs & Engines / Engines, Libraries and Tools / LWJGL3 - Precise Gamepad Input on: 2016-04-26 09:25:19
From what I can gather, LWJGL3 (GLFW) only offers polling when checking up on Joystick/Gamepad input, no callbacks.

If I'm not mistaken, this means I need to poll the input data on each frame (update), which means that the precision of button presses will be dependent on how often the polling is made.

I find this is a problem when requiring precise timing of inputs, for, say, a game requiring key combos, like a fighting game or the like.

So far, the best solution I can come up with is to run the gamepad polling in an independent thread so as to try and make it as fast and stable as possible, and then check the input data from the main game thread when processing the game logic.

Is this approach sound? Am I missing something? Should I throw myself out of a window?

11  Game Development / Performance Tuning / Re: Data array too heavy for task? on: 2016-04-18 12:13:35
Oh, no idea, I assume those are the only values I get.
12  Game Development / Performance Tuning / Re: Data array too heavy for task? on: 2016-04-18 08:02:45
Yup, analog, no virtual keyboard or the like.
13  Game Development / Performance Tuning / Re: Data array too heavy for task? on: 2016-04-15 10:47:43
Thanks for the references and examples! Smiley

For the record, I'm using that massive array because I was following a basic tutorial on LWJGL3 input handlers that had it defined as such.

In any case my worry is about the cost of merrily allocating large static arrays, like the one I mentioned, all across the program. 262kb might not seem like much (well it does feel huge to me anyway) but I suspect it can add up rather quickly.

14  Game Development / Performance Tuning / Data array too heavy for task? on: 2016-04-15 10:25:22
So, I'm implementing my input handler in LWJGL3, doing it on my own (no references) just for the heck of it.

I need to be able to keep track of how long keys have been held down, and my first instinct is to have an array of integers keeping track of the "down" time of individual keys (more precisely, keeping track of the start time).

public static int[] keys_time = new int[65536];


keys_time[key_code] = start_time;

If my calculations are correct, for integers being 32-bits long, just declaring that array takes around 262Kb.

My question here is.... Is this a waste of space? Are 262Kb too much? Would it be worth it to do something like this:
public static HashMap<Integer, Integer> keys_time = new HashMap<Integer, Integer>();


keys_time.put(key_code, start_time);

My intention here is not to discuss about keyboard handlers (I'll check documentation on that later today), but to discuss the ramifications of making design decisions like the above.

15  Discussions / General Discussions / Re: Virtual Reality on: 2016-03-23 14:10:34
I'm really looking forward to this, but I agree that it will be a niche market at best, at least until hardware prices drop to more reasonable levels.

I'd compare it with all the fancy peripherals like steering wheels or advanced flightsticks, they work wonders for the games they are desinged for, but not so many games come out for them, seeing how they are horribly expensive.

Sucks too, because with VR being really new there's a lot of weird untapped (and easy to get into) markets to jump into, like hybrid "2.5d platformers" and other fun stuff that VR could make really interesting.

I'm thinking that, for 3rd person games, VR tech could finally solve most camera issues. You could control the player character with a standard peripheral (keyboard/gamepad) and point the camera with your head.

For games based on precision jumping and the like it would be natural, I mean, who hasn't reflexively tried to look beyond the screen borders when jumping around under bad camera angles?

Same with driving/piloting games, where turning the camera is usually a hassle.

I really hope lots of cool stuff will pop up!
16  Discussions / Miscellaneous Topics / Re: The point of games on: 2016-03-16 18:13:57
You could argue there is also no point in the following:

  • Movies
  • Music
  • Sculpture
  • Curry
  • Non-reproducitve sex
  • Asking questions on the point of things

The answer should be obvious... Ok, except for you, Replicoid Unit #9827772-23
17  Discussions / General Discussions / Re: 135 gigs of assets available for the low price of $13 on: 2016-03-16 18:09:22
Can't wait to see these assets start popping up in Jim Sterling's videos

I'm of the opinion that, used judiciously, pre-bought assets are OK, and the deal seems nice for people needing those kind of resources.

Unfortunately, the usual low-effort hacks will start churning out sub par games using those assets soon, which will inevitably taint any other games using them, hence my opening comment. Sad
18  Discussions / General Discussions / Re: Forum is quiet on: 2016-03-10 09:15:26
sssssh! Keep quiet or IT will find us!  persecutioncomplex
19  Java Game APIs & Engines / OpenGL Development / Re: OpenGL Samples on: 2016-03-03 17:53:46
Or you could enroll in a higher-education course specializing in computer graphics.

Those teachers, man, it's like they are being paid to help people learn!  Shocked
20  Discussions / General Discussions / Re: Comparing Rust and Java on: 2016-03-01 09:12:44
These types of threads make me think of C/C++ as the Dark Souls of programming: Based on old standards, requires a lot of fiddling to get running properly, and is loved mainly by masochists.

Oh, and lots of people (myself included) claim to love it, yet hardly ever use it.  Roll Eyes
21  Discussions / Miscellaneous Topics / Re: I hate hi-res graphics on voxel based games on: 2016-02-29 10:12:19
I hate blocky pixel art, with very low resolution stretched up and displayed.

Everyone has their own preferences and art style. I don't think there is a point in this thread seriously.

Heh, I was being sarcastic in order to spark discussion. I don't think an specific art style is inherently superior/inferior to others, it does come down to taste, but I do find interesting how often games with specific limitations are loaded with all kinds of bells and whistles, which end up clashing horribly.

22  Discussions / Miscellaneous Topics / I hate hi-res graphics on voxel based games on: 2016-02-25 08:46:51
There, I said it!

From hi-def textures pack for Minecraft to new games using all the graphical bells and whistles on their voxel-based worlds.

To me it feels like they are ashamed of their natural blockyness, instead of embracing it.


More seriously, the more I see of those projects, the more I realize Minecraft's retro style was about embracing the limitations of the medium and making the most of it.

We should learn from that... I guess. Tongue

23  Discussions / Miscellaneous Topics / Re: Realistic graphics -- how can it be achieved? on: 2016-02-24 13:40:59
Add that , imho , a perfect 3d Eva Green clone with enanced boobs riding nude a dragon
 that doesn't  know where to go is worst than a decent  "snake" clone  Smiley

Nude Dragon Rider is my new goal in life, with "the *other* kind of ride" DLC for extreme monetization. Grin
24  Discussions / General Discussions / Re: Unity3D/2D on: 2016-02-24 08:31:41
I've personally only dabbled superficially with Unity, so my opinion isn't backed up with experience.

I personally feel that, sometimes, using Unity can be overkill, in that certain games don't really need all the bells and whistles that Unity offers, and could possibly be better off using a different tool.

For example, if you are going to make a standard sprite-based JRPG, RPG-Maker is probably a better fit (haven't used it either though, so just using it as an example).

What really worries me, as has been mentioned by others, is to end up with Unity (or any other engine) being the "standard", and thus forcing the "unity way" into everything, specially if said standardization is based on popularity rather than usefulness (wouldn't surprise me if that's Unity's business plan).

As has been repeated from the start of the thread, Unity is just a tool and must be regarded as such.

But hey, just the opinion of someone without much experience anyway. Smiley
25  Discussions / Miscellaneous Topics / Re: Realistic graphics -- how can it be achieved? on: 2016-02-19 10:41:52
I'd also advise, when looking at indie devs that have managed impressive projects, to take note of where they come from.

Some of the best indie games out there have been built by people with years of experience in the gaming industry, and in many cases, even one-man projects end up requiring a team.
26  Discussions / Miscellaneous Topics / Re: What's your "game dev dream" on: 2016-02-15 13:23:55
that's not enough to live off of. :/

Or, I guess, that'd force you to focus harder on marketability, which would limit the creative vision.  Undecided

I personally would stick with the solo thing if only because I know I'd end up "Phil Fishing" it if I had to deal with others  Roll Eyes
27  Game Development / Newbie & Debugging Questions / Re: Fluidity Of The Simple Pong game on: 2016-02-15 13:21:37
I had similar issues with my game project, despite rendering to 320x200, performance was atrocious, no matter how much I tried to force Java2d to use the GPU (using volatile images, setting environment settings and so forth).

So I finally bit the bullet and made the move to a proper graphics framework (LWJGL in my case).

But I guess people with more knowledge will chip in soon to give you better pointers (as they did with me). Smiley
28  Discussions / Miscellaneous Topics / Re: What's your "game dev dream" on: 2016-02-10 09:42:52
Being able to focus on just one game idea until completion?

I have plenty of notebooks full with designs for "dream games", but very little to show for it.

But, if I had to choose, I'd love to make a metroidvania with procedural generation and an easy to use map/asset editor. Maybe even in 3d!

Heck, I'm tempted to prototype the idea by building a "Metroid Maker" ripoff (assets are already done!)
29  Discussions / General Discussions / Re: Releasing on Steam for a (very) indie developer on: 2016-02-02 08:58:34
- I can't speak exact numbers because of Valve's NDA

There's an NDA on the money you make selling your own games on their platform?  Stare
30  Game Development / Newbie & Debugging Questions / Re: Chunks? Chunk loading and unloading? on: 2016-02-01 13:44:16
You essentially need to decide how to partition and store your map data.

Minecraft, for example, divides the game map into 16 x 16 x 256 tile "chunks" which are loaded based on proximity to the player, and unloaded as the player moves away.

My guess is that Minecraft's strategy is to store the chunks in a List of sorts, which can be accessed like a 2d matrix, since individual chunks contain all the possible vertical space.

As for content generation, the chunks are generated procedurally at first, but they are then saved to disk, and loaded from there in subsequent visits.

I'd go for something like this:

public class Chunk
   public static final int WIDTH  = 10;
   public static final int HEIGHT = 10;

   protected Tiles[] data;

   public Chunk()
      data = new Tiles[WIDTH * HEIGHT];

   public Tiles getTile(int x, int y)
      return data[(y * WIDTH) + x];

   public Tiles setTile(int x, int y, Tile tile)
      data[(y * WIDTH) + x] = tile;

   public Tiles[] getTiles()
      return new ArrayList(data);

  //TODO: Whatever else you need

public class ChunkyMap
   HashMap<int, Chunk> chunks;

   protected int height;
   protected int width;

   public ChunkyMap(int width, int height)
      chunks = new HashMap<int, Chunk>();  
      this.height = height;
      this.width = width;

   public Tiles[] getMap(int x, int y, int chunk_radius)
        int chunk_x = x/Chunk.WIDTH;
        int chunk_y = y/Chunk.HEIGHT;

       //TODO: Check if coordinates are out of the map (or do something clever to get infinite maps)

        List<Tiles> retMap = new List<Tiles>();

        int startY = chunk_y - chunk_radius;
        int startX = chunk_x - chunk_radius;
        int endY = chunk_y + chunk_radius;
        int endX = chunk_x + chunk_radius;

        for(int index = (startY * width) + startX; index < (endY * width) + endX) //Note: This is quite possibly wrong...
                    Chunk newChunk = generateChunkAt(index); //TODO: You know, implement this...
                    chunks.put(index, newChunk);

         return retMap.toArray();

Anyway, just a rough idea, I've personally never implemented something like this, so keep your grain-of-salt-grabbing pincers handy Wink

Edit: Fixed some things with the code that were bothering me, but it is still pretty flawed
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