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1  Discussions / General Discussions / Re: Mac deployment options? on: 2005-10-04 01:03:44
Right now, today, on apple's site, it says Java 5 is part of OS X 10.4, and gives you a link to go buy Tiger, I quote: "Java 2 Standard Edition, version 5.0 is now available for download for Tiger users". Either some people have been downloading this on the sly (people who dont even use java) or it's also at one point autodownloaded as part of the updates system, because some of our machines have java 5 on I didnt put it there, and none of the users would have even known what it was let alone tried installing it.

I know this is rather old at this point but let me make this clear: Java 5 is not included on the OS X 10.4 install discs and it is NOT automatically downloaded by Software Update on any version of OS X. Thus, the ONLY way any OS X users are going to have Java 5 on their machines is if they go to the developer section of Apple's website and download and install Java 5 themselves. The latest release that is automatically installed by Software Update is 1.4.2. I think the reason for this is because Java 5 for OS X is still considered "under development".
2  Discussions / General Discussions / Re: Mac deployment options? on: 2005-08-31 21:59:04
I'm not sure how accurate the information posted in this topic so far is. For one thing, Java 1.4 is built into Mac OS X 10.3 and Mac OS X 10.4, the last two releases of OS X. A very large percentage of Macs currently out there will be running one of these two versions, so you can count on 1.4 being available.

Apple doesn't sell bug fixes and doesn't sell Java 5. These are available freely from their website, or OS X users can have them automatically installed via the "Software Update" program included with the OS. Every couple of years they release a major update to OS X and sell it for $129. For example, 10.3 users would have to pay $129 to upgrade to 10.4. However 10.3.1-10.3.9 are all available freely.

Lastly, even though Apple said that Java 5 would be included with OS X 10.4, this turned out not to be the case. So most users of 10.4 "Tiger" will NOT have Java 5 on their machines yet, although it is available.
3  Game Development / Performance Tuning / Re: Game "stutters" -- is this the garba on: 2005-04-01 17:53:23
Thanks for the replies. I tested on Windows, and no, there are no problems there Angry

I profiled it with -Xrunhprof, but nothing really looks out of the ordinary. I don't really know what to look for, though. I played around with the threads and managed to make the stuttering a little less noticeable, but it's definitely still there. At this point I'm not sure whether to just pass this off as another problem with Java2D on OS X, or to continue to look for a solution...
4  Game Development / Newbie & Debugging Questions / Re: Movement animation on: 2005-03-31 14:27:43
For one thing, you should avoid moving the player directly in the KeyListener methods. Instead of setting player_x and player_y as soon as a key press is detected, you could set a boolean leftPressed, rightPressed, etc. and then move the player during the game loop. You should also be repainting during the game loop, too.

As far as animation goes, you have a lot of booleans that have confusingly similiar names (walk vs. walking?). I think your code is mostly right, though. Try something like this:

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if (leftPressed && !rightPressed) {
      //the left arrow is pressed, so set animation to walk left if it's not already
     if (animation != WALK_LEFT)
            setAnimation(WALK_LEFT);
      player_x -= dx;
} else if (rightPressed && !leftPressed) {
      //the right arrow is pressed, so set animation to walk right
     if (animation != WALK_RIGHT)
            setAnimation(WALK_RIGHT);
      player_x += dx;
} else {
      //if no key is pressed, stop walking
     if (animation == WALK_LEFT)
            setAnimation(STAND_LEFT);
      if (animation == WALK_RIGHT)
            setAnimation(STAND_RIGHT);
}


There may be a better way to do that, but that's what I just came up with.
5  Game Development / Performance Tuning / Game "stutters" -- is this the garbage c on: 2005-03-29 01:15:18
What I'm using: Java2D, 1.4.2 on OS X

Okay, I spent a lot of time writing a class that parses an XML file that stores the animation data for my sprites. It basically extracts a bunch of integers that represent the frames, delays, etc. and stores them in an int array in the sprite class. The problem is that while animating, frequently my whole game slows down to a crawl and sprites jump around sporadically as a bunch of frames are missed. This slowness will eventually pass and then everything is fine again until the next time it happens. This didn't happen at all when my animation data was hard-coded in the sprite class. I tried profiling it but I didn't notice anything very unusual.

Uh, my question was, does this sound like an issue with too much garbage being generated?
6  Discussions / General Discussions / Re: Anyone using SWT? on: 2005-03-25 15:53:19


I was indeed talking about 4.0. It does not look native at all. For one thing, the menubar is part of the frame, not at the top of the screen. Also, there are menu mnemonics, which there OS X doesn't have, and all of the menus are in the wrong font and size (should be Lucida Grande 12). And I guess the "^" symbol is the control key, but all menu shortcuts on OS X use the command key. Another thing that really stands out is that huge space before each menu item. It's there for an icon (which OS X apps shouldn't even use), but those that don't have icons just leave these spaces. There is much more...

Really the only thing they got right is that the app is a single package with no external files. But otherwise the port is pretty bad. Swing can do a lot better if they bothered to code it right.
7  Discussions / General Discussions / Anyone using SWT? on: 2005-03-24 14:47:19
Since Java on OS X is pretty much crap, I've had a hard time finding a usable IDE to work in. Netbeans is slow and very un-Maclike (it's what I use and like very much on Windows). I even had the chance to try IDEA on a company computer and while it fits in better on OS X, it's really slow (as in it there's a very noticeable delay between typing and text showing up on the screen). So I finally downloaded all 80+ megs of Eclipse, and found it to be a very good OS X application. There are a few quirks, but overall it's fast and looks almost native. Is this because it uses SWT instead of Swing? Has anyone had any good experiences with SWT?

::sigh:: here's to hoping (OS X) Tiger will finally make Java viable on the Mac...
8  Discussions / Miscellaneous Topics / Re: Puppy Invaders on: 2005-03-22 01:56:17
I play puppy invaders way too much, but I can't get past the part where those two clusters of purple things come down at you. I would definitely buy a deluxe version if the price was right.

Anyway, I thought I'd mention that it doesn't play that great on OS X. Sometimes the ship gets "stuck" when you are firing. It's fairly easy to recreate the problem if you hold down control and then try to move back and forth. A lot of times, the ship won't move. This doesn't happen on Windows, though.
9  Discussions / Miscellaneous Topics / Re: Relocating.. on: 2005-03-17 23:53:08
San Diego, San Fran and Sacramento

In San Diego, you must check out the San Diego Zoo. It is world-class and has some very cool animals there. The beaches are great of course and making the little trip to Tijuana is fun.

As for San Francisco, it is the best city in the world. I've lived in the Bay Area for decades and I still haven't experienced everything there is to do there. You should check out the ultra-touristy Fisherman's Wharf and Pier 39 for good seafood. You should try to get on one of the small tour boats there that sail under the Golden Gate bridge and around Alcatraz. If you have money to blow, Union Square (or anywhere in the financial district, really) has some nice restaurants and shops. If you're the theatre-going type, the main theatres that show Broadway stuff are the Orpheum, Curran, and Golden Gate. However, you should also check out ACT (American Conservatory Theater) on Geary St, which has great (and cheaper) shows. The War Memorial Opera House is something you should see, too. Definitely visit Height-Ashbury (or Berkeley's Telegraph Ave for that matter) and North Beach (for some really good Italian food). There are plenty of dance/comedy/strip clubs around the downtown area if that's you're thing. I would also recommend going up to Twin Peaks for a great view of the city. Arrggh, there is so much more I could talk about, but I'll give it a rest.

Sacramento...well, um, I guess you could check out the capital, but not really much going on (to be fair, I've never been there).
10  Discussions / Miscellaneous Topics / Re: Relocating.. on: 2005-03-17 23:22:46
Well, really the Davis-Sacramento area is not that bad in terms of cost of living. You're in the sticks by the time you reach Vallejo, and anything further from the Bay Area isn't going to as expensive as Berkeley or the city. However, there is also not much going on out there. I agree, Socal is crap, but so is the central valley. Make sure you get out to the real Bay Area once in a while.
11  Game Development / Performance Tuning / Re: Avoid using objects? on: 2005-02-14 16:21:19
I found the source of my problem: it wasn't using objects that was the problem, it was using 1000s of them per second Wink I was creating just a little garbage in my collision detection routine, but that was easily fixed.

I still find it ridiculous how slow Java2D is on the Mac. I'm getting a max of 1200 FPS on my crap 2.4GHz Dell and only about 150 FPS on my 1GHz eMac.
12  Game Development / Performance Tuning / Re: Avoid using objects? on: 2005-02-09 22:33:54
Thanks for the replies. Since everyone is telling me there must be other problems with my code that have nothing to do with the collection classes I'm using, I will try to profile it and find the bottlenecks. Maybe it's the way I'm using the collections that is the problem.

I'm also thinking my OOP may be causing performance issues. Whenever I draw something to the screen, my game loop tells the manager class which tells an actor class which tells a sprite class to draw itself. The same thing happens when updating game logic. Maybe I should be more "hands-on" with the graphics context. Well, I guess I should go resign myself to the newbie section for a while.
13  Game Development / Performance Tuning / Avoid using objects? on: 2005-02-08 23:12:17
I'm working on my first major game after a lot of failed, smaller projects. But one thing I learned from those projects is to avoid using objects if at all possible for the best performance. I find myself creating bizarre, sparse, multidimensional arrays instead of using classes like ArrayList and HashMap to gain extra fps. Am I being paranoid? I'm using all standard Java libraries and I never have too many performance problems on Windows, but Macs seem to run my games about 60-70% the speed of PCs, so I need the best performance possible.
14  Discussions / General Discussions / Re: How do I go about programming a "hangman& on: 2004-11-11 21:09:20
It is kind of a broad question--what problems do you have specifically? First you should write the game logic--i.e. the rules of the game. You'll probably want to create a text file with a list of words or phrases that your program will read in. Then it'll choose a random phrase to display and draw the corresponding number of ___ to indicate how many letters there are. You'll also need a way to get user input. What part of this process do you need help on?
15  Discussions / General Discussions / Re: Good tutorials? on: 2004-11-11 21:02:08
I'd also be interested in more Java game tutorials. I did Kevin's tutorial a while ago, and recently I looked at the planetalia one, but I think I've had enough of space invaders. I wish someone here would do a tutorial for a platformer or an overhead adventure game. I know it requires a lot of time to do these, but they don't have to be that complex, just enough to convey the basic way to approach these types of games.

I've found that this website is very useful:
Java Games Programming Techniques

It's an online version of an upcomming O'Reilly book on Java game programming. It's good, but a large portion is on 3D games which I have no interest in at this point. The best format for a tutorial I've ever seen has got to be the planetalia.com one--very easy to read and follow. I would love to see more tutorials like that in the future.
16  Game Development / Newbie & Debugging Questions / Help making my first tile-based game. on: 2004-11-01 23:32:40
I'm not exactly "newless" when it comes to creating Java games, but since I've never done this type of game, my techniques are probably not the best. The game I'm currently working on is tile-based--it will probably end up being a Rogue-like dungeon exploration game. But all I'm doing now is creating the map engine that loads the level data from a file and draws it to the screen. I have a few questions at this point:

1. What is the best way to store level data? There will probably be several thousand tiles in each level when they are done, so I don't want it take up a whole lot of space.

2. Terrain transitions. How do I deal with these? Right now I only have two terrain types--grass and water, but I expect to have 9-10 when I'm finished. I read some tutorial online that explained how to make the graphics (using transparent transitions and assigning each terrain a priority), but I still don't really understand how I'm supposed to draw them. There are 32 transitions tiles--how do I determine which one to draw?
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