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1  Java Game APIs & Engines / Tools Discussion / Free online subversion repositories? on: 2005-12-03 13:43:48
Me and a couple of friends have started a small Java-game project. We have come to the point where we really would need a Subversion repository online. I really don't like CVS since it lacks many important features and prevents things like refactoring. Any suggestions where I can find a good, free online Subversion repository which doesn't require that I publish everything under GPL?
2  Game Development / Game Play & Game Design / Navigation tutorial wanted on: 2005-07-20 11:21:47
I'm experimenting with JOGL and are currently working on a simple FPS game. However, it seems a waste of time if I'm going to figure out the best way to implement navigation in my games and apps. Are there any good tutorials on different navigation algorithms available? The different scenarios I come to think of are:

- First-Person-Shooter navigation on a flat plane (no/very simple gravitation)
- First-Person-Shooter naviagation in a terrain (with gravitation)
- Spacecraft navigation (no graviation)
- Aircraft navigation (with gravitation)

I got the math figured out, but I'd like to see some best-practice examples of how to implement it (prefferebly using JOGL, but any language will do).

Thanks!
3  Java Game APIs & Engines / Java 3D / Re: GeometryArray to use for landsape model on: 2004-09-01 04:54:05
Thanks the tips. I had actually completly missed the Sun Java 3D tutorial. Smiley

I've managed to get a landscape working partially using QuadArray, but switching to TriangleStripArray gave a much better result. The next step is to make it look like a "real" landscape.

I'm trying to implement a simple fractal landscape generator using the diamond-square algorithm. Since I'm doing a great deal of coding at work, my head tends to get a little heavy when I get home so my progress is a bit slow. When I'm done I'll post here for those who are interrested...
4  Java Game APIs & Engines / Java 3D / GeometryArray to use for landsape model on: 2004-08-29 12:05:15
I am unsure of how the different GeometryArray-classes work when I manually want to generate a landscape from a set of 3D points.

I have an ordinary Point3f array that specify the coordinates in a square grid. Looks something like this:

1  
myLandscapeCoords = new Point3f[] { (an array of x*x Point3f objects representing the points in the landscape grid...) }

The question is, how should they be ordered and which GeometryArray-calss (e.g., QuadArray) should be used? Currently I simply initialize them starting with the bottom left corner and go from left to right (i.e., one loop through z-axis with an inner loop through the x-axis).

I really need to find some good explaination of the different subclasses to GeometryArray..
5  Game Development / Networking & Multiplayer / Re: Decentralized real-time network games on: 2004-08-26 12:08:22
Quote

Perhaps if you could be more specific about the precise problem seen on a server based system, and quantify the improvement from your idea, then it might penetrate my skull Grin and I'd have a better idea what you're aiming at.


Ok, now you're just being offensive. I resepct your authority on the subject and will keep your arguments in mind while I look into this a bit further on my own.

Regarding my suggestion for preventing local state manipulation I'll see if I can get my thesis online so you can have a look at it if you're interrested.
6  Game Development / Networking & Multiplayer / Re: Decentralized real-time network games on: 2004-08-26 11:18:45
Quote

From those who've researched the issues: For practical use it sucks; don't go there.

First off all, I'm talking about decentralization, not P2P. P2P sucks and is probably only suitable for file-sharing and community systems (e.g., IM, groupware etc.).

Decentralized systems, where computations doesn't have to be performed at the central server, is different and would solves alot of problems existing in centralized systems with high real-time requirements (like MMOG servers).

Cheating, in the sense of manipulating the local computations, can be solved using code mobility. I proved this in my master thesis (sorry, no online reference). Basically, what you do is to distribute a new, slightly modified, game-rule component at irregular intervals to prevent players from patching the local application. There are more problems with cheating also (bugs in code, etc.), but these also exist for centralized solutions.

The problems with bandwith and latency as you mention it are at least partially solved using a decentralized solution. The bandwidth usage is reduced since computations are performed locally, then distributed to the necessarry player-clients and the result doesn't need to be confirmed anywhere. Latency is always a problem, regardless if you use a centralized, decentralized or P2P solution.

Persistence is a problem in decentralized environment since a computation isn't performed where the persistent data is stored.

However, I do agree with your last statement. But that doesn't prevent the idea of a decentralized solution to be explored. It is always easier to write a centralized solution, and hardware is cheap (compared to development costs).
7  Discussions / General Discussions / Re: Where are all the unlicensed graphics resource on: 2004-08-26 08:45:02
Quote

Only problem is that there are good tilesets available on the net, a lot of good programming libraries, and almost no 3d models (don't know about music/sounds). But I don't see any reason why 3d models are different from other kind of resources. Probably has something to do with mindset of 3d artists (as opposed to pixel artists for example).


Exactly my problem. I can't start from scratch with my 3D models. I need a basic "framework" to start with.

To be more specific, what I currently need is a landscape. Small hills with grass, a few trees and preferably surrounded by mountains. As I see it, there should be tools to generate the basics (a relatively simple fractal generation should suffice). However, I haven't been able to find anything remotely useful...
8  Game Development / Networking & Multiplayer / Decentralized real-time network games on: 2004-08-26 06:55:20
What is the general opinion in the game developer community on decentralized solutions for network games (e.g., MMOG, FPS etc.)? I am convinced that there are viable solutions and that large-scale online games wouldn't require a high-end central mainframe with such a solution.

The biggest challanges as I see it would be:

  • Cheat-proof. How do we detect and prevent cheating players?
  • Persistence. Even with a smaller server for storing offline players data, how do you ensure that the world is indeed persistent, or at least experienced as such?
  • Synchronization. How do we ensure that player A sees the same world as player B?

Preventing cheaters is more about making cheating cost more than its worth, than actually making cheating impossible. So this problem is probably the easiest to solve.

Persistence could possibly be solved by looking at how modern P2P-systems work. This might also solve the synchronization problem.

So what do the rest of you think? Most of the server-architecture for online game out today are centralized. Would a decentralized solution be worth looking into?
9  Discussions / General Discussions / Re: Where are all the unlicensed graphics resource on: 2004-08-26 03:26:05
Quote
You could always *learn* to make good art. Art is primarily a learnable skill rather than anything innate (sure, there is a small proportion of people who can never tell the difference between something that looks good and something that looks bad except on the most superficial level, but they are very few and far between).


I disagree. Sure, I could learn how to use the tools. But I lack the artistic talent to make anything that actually looks good. Besides, I don't have time to both create good looking 3D models AND implement my own hobby-project 3D games...

10  Discussions / General Discussions / Re: Where are all the unlicensed graphics resource on: 2004-08-25 10:40:11
Quote
I don't know where you have looked, but I would say your best bet would be to search out forums specifically for artists. I don't know of any off hand. The http://www.gamedev.net forums have a section for art, but I am sure there are more specific ones out there.


Looking more closely at gamdev.net's 3D art articles one will see polycount and 3D Cafe listed (along with a couple of other sites that doesn't work anymore). Sure, polycount is good if I want models for an FPS. But I want a modular fantasy-character ala Diablo II, and a complete set of landscape models, and trees, and houses. All in the same theme. 3D Cafe have some good free models, but nothing that comes close to what I'm looking for.

Given google a try will result in a wide variety of sites of different quality. However, there doesn't seem to be a good 3D model archive online that actually provide sets of easy-to-use models for free.

Then there is the problem with open-source 3D tools. If I find a nice model that I wish to make some minor changes to I'm out of luck again.

Am I actually the only programmer with this problem?
11  Discussions / General Discussions / Where are all the unlicensed graphics resources? on: 2004-08-22 08:30:46
As the topic says, where are the free/unlicensed graphics (and sound) resources to be found?
Sure there are sites like 3D Cafe's Free 3D Models and Polycount, but most of the things you find there are basically crap. Where do I find a collection of basic reusable 3D models that I can use in a fantasy game? Compared to the amount of free/unlicensed/open-source 3D engines, the artist community is very disappearingly small.

Since I'm almost completly free of artistic talent when it comes to drawing (the result is almost as good as a 3-year-old kid with broken crayons), I have to rely entirely on the free material available. Its a little like bit like Salieri and Mozart, I can recognize good art when I see it, but I can never create anything remotely as good myself.

Is the 3D artist community less anxious to share their work compared to software developers, or are there some other reason? I would really like to see that I'm wrong about this and that I've missed a couple of really great sites with free models and sounds. Anyone else recognizing this problem?
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