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1  Discussions / Miscellaneous Topics / Re: Pointed pepper seeds on: 2014-03-31 20:45:34
I've seeded two times, the second round should have been quite dry. The first, maybe not.

But the bell peppers needed 8 days to show, so I'd not expect the pointed peppers before Wednesday this week, the second seed not before the weekend. At the moment I just assume it's alright and just needs more time.
2  Discussions / Miscellaneous Topics / Re: Pointed pepper seeds on: 2014-03-31 10:40:33
The bell peppers finally are growing. The pointed peppers still don't show. Of the 8 tomato plants I've put 4 into their own pots now, and over the weekend I've started to dig a vegetable bed, but the soil seems to be the same sort like in my parents garden - it becomes hard like concrete if it dries out, and a very sticky mess if wet. And I have no compost yet, to improve it.

I'll see what happens. I'm planning with some yellow onions, the tomatoes, peppers, some chives, dill, parsley, basil, radish and some cucumbers.

The garden of my parents has been sold, and my mom is in nursing home since last year, that's why I'm trying to set up my own vegetable garden this year. Luckily the rent for the flat includes use of the garden. I'm missing experience with vegetables, in my parents garden I was responsible mostly for the berry bushes and fruit trees.

The photos from the blog are from Friday evening, meanwhile the bed is done and the peppers have grown a bit more.

It seems though that my hobby game projects won't make any progress during gardening season. But I wanted to get away from the computer since a while, so I think that's good.
3  Discussions / Miscellaneous Topics / Re: Pointed pepper seeds on: 2014-03-27 13:02:03
Post some pics if you do not manage to kill them all. Smiley

The pepper seeds are still a bit shy, but I've spotted some first green tips where I have placed the baught pepper seeds from last week. So I hope they will start growing soon. The tomatoes are doing well so far, all eight of them. The seeds from the mentioned pointed pepper are in the soil since Tuesday and need some more time.

Some photos are over here, the text is in German, though:

I've improvised a mini-greenhouse with some clear foil. It seems to work so far.

4  Discussions / Miscellaneous Topics / Re: Pointed pepper seeds on: 2014-03-24 22:28:59
Will do. I have good faith, at least growing tomatoes worked fine in the past years. Peppers are new for me, but a related plant, so there is a chance Smiley
5  Discussions / Miscellaneous Topics / Re: Pointed pepper seeds on: 2014-03-24 21:14:56
Thanks! So I'll prepare another box with soil and try these too. I'm curious about the results Smiley

I hope my place will be warm enough. I just browsed the web to get more information, and it seems the biggest concern is warmth. I'll have them in pots on the south side of the house in front of the wall, that's the most I can give them.
6  Discussions / Miscellaneous Topics / Re: Pointed pepper seeds on: 2014-03-24 20:15:20
I've got some other (bought) pepper seeds already in the earth, waiting for them to sprout. But I guess I'll try these too, as you said, just to see what happens. I don't have that much space to grow plants, though, must see.
7  Discussions / Miscellaneous Topics / Pointed pepper seeds on: 2014-03-24 20:07:45
I've got a question about pointed peppers. I'd like to grow my own this year, and I wonder if I can use the seeds from one of my bought pointed peppers.
The question is, if the sold sorts are hybrids. Seeds from hybrids often result in very random plants, unlike the parent plant. I don't know the word for the opposite of hybrid, but such plants can be regrown from their seeds with good results.
The pointed pepper in question s a high quality sort from Israel. But I have no sort name or such, just the country of origin.

Additional question: Some seeds won't sprout until after a period of cold. Do I have to put those seeds into the freezer for some days, to simulate winter?

Maybe there are some hobby garderners around who can help Smiley
8  Discussions / General Discussions / Re: So, Whats First? on: 2014-03-21 14:17:38
Usually I start with some data structures, most often the map, and then the display code. That needs some graphics so these come next.
9  Discussions / General Discussions / Re: 30 vs 60 vs 120 FPS on: 2014-03-20 14:05:34
The past TV (CRT) screens also had some natural smoothing between the frames because the former frame faded only slowly and blended with the next. It's been less sharp this way, but motions appeared smoother, and the screen flickering was less notable.

Computer screens always had less of this smoothing effect, I think intentionally, and needed higher refresh rates.
10  Discussions / General Discussions / Re: 30 vs 60 vs 120 FPS on: 2014-03-20 13:32:37
In my experience framerate jitter (particularly sudden spikes and drops) disturbs the eye more than a fairly low but very constant framerate.

It's debatable what exactly "fairly low" and "too much jitter" is, but instead of aiming at something above 60Hz, I'd try to aim at a rock solid 60Hz rate.
11  Game Development / Game Play & Game Design / Re: The Modern RPG and Inventory Systems on: 2014-03-19 23:27:20
I made my decision for item size (2D grid, some items can stack), and a weight limit. But e.g. features like a weight limit must fit together with the rest of the game system - in D2 a starting player had a str of 10-20 but could top out at more than 300 str. Do you really want a high level char to carry 10 or 20 times more than a new character?

Just make it so that it fits your game. Numerous inventory systems were made, and all have their merits.
12  Games Center / WIP games, tools & toy projects / Re: The hunt for the lost rainbow jewels on: 2014-03-19 22:17:54
Food! But the mushroom farming code didn't make it into the game yet. A while I also pondered keeping food animals in the dungeon, but moving targets are currently too much of a challenge for the AI.

Also I wonder if some monster should be made to collect things. Jewelry or shiny items, maybe. But they should leave some loot on the floor, I think players expect that from this sort of games.


Reminds me of an old character I once sketched up, the janitor orc, who really hates adventurers with dirty, muddy boots Cheesy He's armed with a bucket, mob and brush, and a skilled fighter with those. Dirtfighter, usually, but he can give a good beating to adventurers too, if they do not take off the dirty boots.

I've got the transitions between the village map and down to the dungeon done. Also cleaned up the code and brushed up some graphics. I feel a bit uncertain about this release, since I had a few crashes while testing, but I couldn't reproduce the problems.

13  Discussions / Business and Project Management Discussions / Re: Creating rpg Multiplayer Game[Update 10/%50 / Some More Ai Test + auto spawn] on: 2014-03-19 13:13:38
Why no mak rpg eni moar?
14  Discussions / General Discussions / Re: The balance between quality and accessibility. on: 2014-03-19 13:12:35
My projects use to take a while being developed, so the hardware I start with is usually old when the project is done. At time my own hardware has been older than 5 years, so I figured if it runs on my old can, it will run on enough other hardware as well.

Currently I'm in the rare situation to have a somewhat up to date computer (i7, 8gb ram, no idea graphics), so I use my laptop at work as a testbed at times. It's much slower.
15  Games Center / WIP games, tools & toy projects / Re: The hunt for the lost rainbow jewels on: 2014-03-19 10:02:16
The imps now got some basic AI, which can let them do some tasks. At the moment the only two tasks implemented are sleeping and drinking from a well. Even this little gives the dungeon a much more alive appearance, and it's kind of entertaining just to watch the imps scurry around Smiley

Edit: Due to a bug it might happen that maps are generated which have no wells. In that case the imps just sit sulking in their lairs. If that happens, just start the demo again, most often the maps are correctly generated.

The missing well can happen if an imp places its lair on top of the well ... I believe that this even can remove the stairs from the map.
16  Games Center / WIP games, tools & toy projects / Re: The hunt for the lost rainbow jewels on: 2014-03-17 13:05:42

I've added some more graphics from, and improved the monster pathfinding performance. Now there are 50 confused imps on the starting map, moving randomly. Combat has been expanded a bit, physical damage is now actually calculated, and there are very simple effects indicating if you hit an imp. No death animation though, so the imps just vanish upon the final hit. The imps have 20 hitpoints and don't fight back at the moment.

First quest: Clean the level from the 50 imps Cheesy

Well, not really, but at least there is something to do now.

17  Discussions / General Discussions / Re: Ever forget how your own code works? on: 2014-03-12 10:34:39
It happens. One time I was not even able to find out how the thing worked, and I had to replace it by new code when I wanted to make a change.

Comments are your friend, I've learned.
18  Game Development / Newbie & Debugging Questions / Re: What to use for config files? on: 2014-03-11 14:05:35
It looks to me that you were born in a much higher lvel world than I was, and won't be happy with text files ... but here, how to store and read a location (x/y pair)

Store a location:

Writer writer = new FileWriter("filename.txt");
writer.write("" + x + " " +  y");

Read it:

BufferedReader reader = new BufferedReader(new FileReader("filename.txt");
String line = reader.readLine();
String [] parts = line.split(" ");
int x = Integer.parseInt(parts[0]);
int y = Integer.parseInt(parts[1]);

Code typed from memory, might have bugs.
19  Game Development / Newbie & Debugging Questions / Re: What to use for config files? on: 2014-03-11 13:54:40
Usually I just use text files, if I want to appear more professional I'm using XML. But actually, unless you want to share the data with other projects, just use whatever is the most easy way for you.
20  Discussions / General Discussions / Re: just Learned Interfaces on: 2014-03-11 13:00:52
How was my answer obscure?

It's not been about your answer. It was a (inserious) suggestion to the original poster. Smalltalk programmers won't think it's obscure though, since in smalltalk you just need the method name and no interface or super class.
21  Games Center / WIP games, tools & toy projects / Re: The hunt for the lost rainbow jewels on: 2014-03-11 12:55:25
Designing the world and quests will be quite some work. I sure will ask here for advice, so there is hope to get it right Smiley Actually I expect this to take a quite long while, designing the world seems to be much work.

The mouse input handler has a bug which prevents subsequent mouse clicks to be recognized if the mouse isn't moved between the clicks. Also the imp disturbs the mouse input handler at times. I hope I can fix both issues soon.

I'll work on a resizable window, in the next release the window will just be a bit less tall. That should help a bit already.

Thanks for the feedback!


New version with fixes for mouse input bugs, shorter window and async monster pathfinding (to prevent stalls) - it's been done in a hurry, so I'm not 100% sure if everything works as intended, but it looked alright in my quick tests:
22  Discussions / General Discussions / Re: just Learned Interfaces on: 2014-03-11 12:52:49
... and if you want to be really obscure you can do all method calls "by name" through reflection.
23  Games Center / WIP games, tools & toy projects / Re: The hunt for the lost rainbow jewels on: 2014-03-10 22:38:49
I hope this link will work. Sourceforge delays the downloads for a few seconds:

Unzip the archive and then use the start.bat to run the demo.
24  Games Center / WIP games, tools & toy projects / Re: The hunt for the lost rainbow jewels on: 2014-03-10 21:08:18
I've compiled a new walkaround demo

- Includes some more items, magic rings and amulets
- Some new pre- and postfixes for items, some bugfixes for item coloring
- Includes an hyperactive imp, running around (testing monster pathfinding and moving)
- Includes stairs up to reach the village map (testing map transitions)
- Tab key toggles item name display on map floor

The village map has no functionality, and there is no way back from the village map. It's just to have two maps, a procedurally generated one and a fixed one and to test switching between the maps. The village map also has some graphical glitches, since you can move to areas which should be blocked (e.g. the areas covered by the houses).

There also is some code for handling unidentified items, but since there are no identify scrolls yet, I made all items identified by default. It might happen though that in some parts of the UI the magic pre- and postfixes don't show properly, since this code isn't complete yet.

25  Java Game APIs & Engines / OpenGL Development / Re: VBO performance on: 2014-03-10 14:47:19
I've got 2 isometric game projects with LWJGL on my back now, and I must say both run fine with immediate mode, reaching 60FPS with plenty of spare time for activities on the CPU.

Unless you do the research for the research sake, in my experience you don't need more than immediate mode for a 2D (or 2.5D) game.
26  Java Game APIs & Engines / OpenGL Development / Re: VBO performance on: 2014-03-10 14:29:40
Isn't immediate mode performant enough for a 2D game engine?
27  Discussions / General Discussions / Re: Making everything by yourself. And loving it! on: 2014-03-10 14:00:23
And it seems you all get my point Cheesy

Long ago I also made my own graphics libraries, my own UI toolkits and the like.

I still do some of that. So I can say "been there, done that". But the people who warn about reinventing the wheel have a point. One really tends to spend a lot of time on "cool code", which a while later won't be of any interest anymore.

I assume it's a thing of "age" - starting developers need to learn and also understand how things work, and doing your own versions of all sorts of low level and support code is good for that.

Later you know all that, got tired of it, and the result (the game) comes more into focus.

Maybe I'm wrong there, but at least for me it worked this way. At times I feel uncertain though what's quicker - looking for a premade solution or doing it by myself. In some cases searching takes long, and if it's unsuccessful one still needs to do the work oneself.

On the other hand I'm often surprised what is there already, wioth fair licenses and just for you to use. Unfortunately it's often hard to faind :/
28  Games Center / WIP games, tools & toy projects / Re: Procedural 2d Pixel Vessels / Space Ships on: 2014-03-10 13:12:55
I once had a similar idea and made a shooter concept study with procedurally (randomly) generated enemies. I hd three types of enemies, one a bit similarly looking to yours:

The latest version:

Currently I wonder if the idea can be expanded to 3D, I'd like some procedurally generated enemies for my lates RPG project. Any ideas?
29  Discussions / General Discussions / Re: Making everything by yourself. And loving it! on: 2014-03-10 11:31:43
It's just a question of goals - if you want to make a game and focus on the "game" aspect, you'll want to use all tools and shortcuts which let you focus on game creation.

If you are interested in the mechanics of games, and not so much the game made with the machinery, you surely want to find out how to make such machinery.

Usually the former approach results in games, and the latter results in (game) engines.
30  Discussions / General Discussions / Re: Do internet Game Dev Teams Actually work? on: 2014-03-10 10:15:26
Let's say you're the project initiator. You end up doing at least 60% of all the work anyways, but have to spend 2x more time doing those 60% than if you would have done it alone, because trying to coordinate a team requires a lot of work and effort. Instead of being able to design things on your own, you have to discuss with others, explain, and after a lot of effort they lose interest in the project anyways. Time wasted.

This is my experience too. But working together with one or two persons can work.
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