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1  Game Development / Newbie & Debugging Questions / Re: Why should I use a Game-Engine like lwjgl or libgdx instead of Swing? on: 2014-03-05 15:53:32
I'm new in the game delevopment with java. And now I want to learn more about Game Engines.
Until now, I only heard of Swing. Than I found out, that there are more game engines like lwjgl, libgdx, etc.

Now my problem:
Why should I use lwjgl or something like this? What makes it "better" (better is a bad word for it I think).
And whats the difference about lwjgl / libgdx? Where are the pros and cons?

When you're new to Java, you could like the new JavaFX multi-media library, which is part of Java 8 (being released this month). It's meant as an alternative to or rather successor of Swing, actually. SUN's Swing veteran Richard Blair is also a key architect in the Fx library.

In contrast to the older Java2D (which you probably mean when you say Swing), the Fx library provides true hardware accelerated 2D and 3D with an easy to learn but solid scene-graph "engine", also suited for casual games.

I've just recently mentioned it here in the other thread: Libraries vs. Pure Java
2  Game Development / Newbie & Debugging Questions / Re: Libraries vs. Pure Java on: 2014-03-04 13:36:27
Pure Java meaning just the libraries that come with Java when you download it. No libraries that someone else besides the Java developers has developed. Realistically it's a silly idea, but it can be done.

Well, it's not such a "silly idea" anymore since Java 8, which includes the hardware accelerated multi-media library JavaFX. I only started to examine it a few weeks ago in my very limited spare-time, but my tests so far are very satisfying.

The Fx library does provide a simple to use but solid all-around API with an accelerated and combined 2D & 3D scene-graph; the 3D part uses an adapted version of Java3D. Since Fx and its scene-graph is for general purposes -- UIs, diagrams, etc. but also casual games --, it is for sure not as efficient as a dedicated game engine. But it works well on all platforms and out of the box, and is easy enough to learn and use.
By the way, Fullscreen on and off now takes one to three lines of code and actually works! :-)

Java 8 final will be out in ~mid of this March 2014, and we already have a solid Release Candidate on Java.net. So it can be used already now. It runs on all major platforms, also on ARM Linux powered devices.

I always advice people to use those libraries and tools which fits best for them. I think with Java 8, pure-Java is also possible for casual games, finally. As an old pure-Java fan I really do love that.
3  Java Game APIs & Engines / JavaFX / Re: JOGL in JavaFX on: 2014-02-04 12:30:08
Maybe Preston agrees with me. My concern is that I don't see JavaFX as a Swing replacement but I really want to provide some sort of interoperability between JOGL and OpenJFX / JavaFX. On my view, this feature is a "must have". However, I don't see a fully JOGL based pipeline for OpenJFX / JavaFX as an absolute necessity.

Well, I too like Java2D and Swing. I like the visual cleanness of Swing and don't need the eye-candy style of JavaFX's UI. I'm sure that Swing can be used for many years. Even if Swing and/or Java2D won't see new features anymore, it's a robust API and will stay in Java. Do they ever remove libraries? I wouldn't know of one.

However hardware accelerated Java2D has always been a bit tricky for me, because it seems you often don't know if this or that operation is really going to be accelerated or not. For experts this may not be a problem, but average guys like me are usually lost in this aspect.

With JavaFX, SUN (*) made a clean cut: everything in JavaFX is meant to be hardware accelerated from the beginning -- or it's not accelerated at all (it fall-backs to Java2D entirely, and hence no 3D), but no mishmash.
From a) SUN's and b) us normal programmers' point of view this new approach makes sense, still, I think: a) SUN can present the eye-candies for the masses who like the fancy stuff. And b) we feed the JavaFX's scene-graph very differently than we draw to Java2D, so that the scene-graph can be fully accelerated.

That's how I understand things currently, but I could be wrong. So, for multi-media things, and this includes modest games, I think JavaFX is an attractive option indeed, since it works out of the box without any 3rd party libraries, even on such small Linux devices like the Raspberry Pi -- then without the Web- and Video-player components however.


But JavaFX has higher demands for newer hardware, as Julien mentioned. For example, on my nice ~8 year old PC which came with WinXP and a not-so-fast but solid ATI X1300 GPU, JavaFX black-lists the card and so uses software 2D only, and no 3D at all. Since ATI stopped to provide Windos drivers for this card a long time ago, JavaFX on this WinXP computers is useless.

On Linux however things are much better, since is fully supports this card, with the X.Org's R300 driver using the "Gallium 0.4 on ATI RV515" renderer. I've to say I'm deeply impressed.

And so, with Linux, you can also overcome JavaFX's strange black-list which blocks a lot of cards: just use the "-Dprism.forceGPU=true" parameter to ignore the black-list, and JavaFX runs smooth and nicely also on this older PC via OpenGL-ES2.


However, I realise that there's many other cards which may not play so nice even with forceGPU, for example because of Windows (XP). And here I think a connection between the solid JOGL and JavaFX would be valuable.




(*) It's been SUN indeed, since the technical architect of JavaFX, Mr. Richard Bair, was in SUN's Swing team and they started it at SUN.
4  Java Game APIs & Engines / JavaFX / Re: JOGL in JavaFX on: 2014-01-31 11:18:41
Hi Julien, thanks for all your work on JOGL etc together with Sven and others.

Your idea to bring JOGL and JavaFX together would much be appreciated. Because, like you, I don't want to throw away our good old computers just because they're older but still work perfectly.
And JavaFX can be useful for new projects (not neccesarily as replacement for Swing), but its demand for newer GPUs is very hard, whilst JOGL runs nearly everyhwere.

"JavaFX 2 Certified System Configurations"
(And it's not relaxed with JFX in Java 8...)

So, keep up the good work, and all the best!
5  Java Game APIs & Engines / Java 3D / Re: Ferrari3D: java3d racing game/simulation/tech demo on: 2012-04-03 11:58:59
I was looking forward to trying out your car game but unfortunately the link seems to be changed to an IP virus checker  Huh
Is there anywhere else that the download is available from??
detto
6  Discussions / General Discussions / Re: Eclipse vs. Netbeans on: 2012-03-21 08:55:36
I use both everyday.  I could live without either.  I also use VS and JEdit as needed.
Funny you mention Jedit. I use it every day and it's one of the smartest text editors I ever used (and I used a lot).

Using Netbeans I like, too. For example to program Swing GUI applications.
I can also edit, compile, run and debug the Java source code with Netbeans on HP UX machines for example, and out of the box -- i.e. the very same Netbeans ZIP archive I use on Linux and Windows. That's impressive not only for me, but also for the HP UX guys who're usually not familiar with good looking GUI programs let alone an IDE.
7  Games Center / Featured Games / Re: Daedalus on: 2012-03-21 08:34:28
"OpenGL 3.0 support fail"

:-(

Unfortunately I can't run your game. My PC is about 3-4 years old and appearantly the graphics card can't do OpenGL 3. The card has shaders, however.

Would really love to run the demo, because I liked the original Alien Breed on Amiga -- it was one of the most atmospheric games at its time!
8  Games Center / Showcase / Re: Lodestar: Stygian Skies on: 2012-02-29 14:27:25
Great! Voxels FTW!

Voxels?

That's Unlimited Details Technology finally arriving on Java, isn't it? :-)
9  Discussions / General Discussions / Re: How Long Have You Been Coding? on: 2012-02-29 11:21:42
We at Puppygames subscribe to the restricted platform point of view, without the restrictions Wink We have the ability now to arbitrarily set our own restrictions, and then work within them - the best of both worlds!
You and your games came actually to my mind, when I posted.

Congratulations to you and your success in putting these two worlds together! That's a very rare skill these days, I think.
10  Discussions / General Discussions / Re: How Long Have You Been Coding? on: 2012-02-29 11:16:40
I started to program when this cute little ZX Spectrum 48K was released, this was in 1982 IIRC. Which means I too am programming now for about 30 years. Still I'm not very bright. But older!

And I've to say that programming these little home computers (first Sinclair's ZX Spectrum, then Amstrad's CPC, then later Acorn's Archimedes) was the best computer time ever for me. Not because back then it was just a hobby and today it's more of a profession, but because back then it was incredible fun to work in a restricted hardware and software "frame".
Today, when nearly everything goes concerning hardware and software, developer's tend to "get lost in ... infinity" what's concerning games. I mean, when I played Cholo for example, I was there in these dark vector towns with these frightening robots... because imagination filled all the gaps which the little 8bit hardware and software left plenty of, whilst today you see everything and your imagination has hardly any room to unfold (it's like with black-white Hitchcock movies which always use the audience's imagination).
Of course the Cholo remake on today's computers is pretty cool, too, because often "less is more" -- and that's why I just love Java Gaming with you retro inspired Java developers. (So many of these 4 K and bigger Java games are really fun.)

Of course programming in Java is one of the most comfortable and effective things I can imagine because I really can concentrate on the task which needs to be solved. Still, as Cas says, it's a good thing when you didn't start with a complex object orientated computer language... (is there anything cooler than pure ARM assembler, for example? Hardly, hehe!)
11  Discussions / Business and Project Management Discussions / Re: List of commercial games using Java? on: 2012-02-10 09:32:41
You can add Tribal Trouble to the list.
Added. Thanks!
And I agree with your entire post, too.
12  Games Center / Showcase / Re: Crusaders of Yore on: 2012-02-01 21:40:05
Quote from: Preston
P.S. The HTML5 version doesn't work with my Firefox10 at the moment, but probably because I've set too many restrictions for it?
Cookies! With disabled cookies (my default) it won't run. But with enabled cookies your game runs in Html5 mode. A little bit out of sync sometimes, but it runs. Nice.

What exactly do you mean with the following, by the way?
Quote from: Kev
Yes, it's deployed in flash and HTML5, yes it is written in Java.
13  Games Center / Showcase / Re: Crusaders of Yore on: 2012-02-01 19:39:02
The sprites look really well and I like them. I like retro things in general, and that's why I usually like all your work, Kev.

Keep up the good work!


P.S. The HTML5 version doesn't work with my Firefox10 at the moment, but probably
because I've set too many restrictions for it?
14  Discussions / General Discussions / Re: Programming language decisions on: 2012-01-26 09:27:12
I think Java is the best platform available for most general tasks. It's fairly easy to use and you can produce excellent results in a reasonable time window with a fair amount of work. The resulting programs cover an amazingly wide area like servers, desktops (GUI), games, etc.

I've professionally programmed many years in assembler, C, C++, Pascal/Delphi, Java and even particpated in some 40 years old Fortran programs (that's not so funny). But Java was and is the only platform I see as a really smart tool to produce the software you actually need to, without too many restrictions and crazy hurdles.
(I.e. when you've to hunt "memory leaks" in a huge C++ application developed by a team of people including you in several years of work, you'll see that basically C is just another variation of macro assembler and C++ is just an object orientated macro assembler. So, no matter if a byte shifting program in C is 20% or 30% faster than a Java byte shifter, you really don't want to go back normally. And I didn't mention byte shifting accidentidally, because today's software usually is no byte shifter anymore because you've got your hardware or libraries for that. Using the correct algorithms and data structures (Collections) in your application is usually the key for performance.)  

By using Java as platform you don't get chained to a certain operating system and still have got a powerful programming language at your hands.
Usually as a software developer you're confrontated with certain tasks to solve in software for a certain platform, and the main question is: will you manage to develier the finished product? And for all that Java is the real "Software Swiss Knife" in my experience. It's still a knife, and work will always be work, but it's a smart tool for a good work.

Howgh. :-)
15  Java Game APIs & Engines / Java 3D / Re: Java3d not totally dead on: 2012-01-26 08:57:53
Thank you very much, Hharrison. This is good news.

I always liked Java3D and it's very useful for many projects. It would be a shame in case it died.
16  Games Center / Showcase / Re: http://sourceforge.net/projects/callie/ on: 2011-06-29 08:06:59
Shlax, I tried your demo by downloading the ZIP archiv containing all files, and it works well on my Windows XP machine with an older ATI Radeon graphics cards.
Your demo looks very nice. Congratulations. Maybe a bit too dark and the camera is still hard to control.

But I had Java3d's DLLs already in my Windows PATH, otherwise your demo would not have run.

You could just put the four Java3d DLLs into your base folder containing the main "callie.jar". For Windows this works well then.
For Linux things are slightly different but basically you can also put the two ".so" files next to your base folder and supply a mini shell script which starts your demo, for example either
a) "export LD_LIBRARY_PATH=." and then start the JAR file.
or
b) java -Djava.library.path=. -jar callie.jar
17  Discussions / General Discussions / Re: Raspberry Pi ultra-low-cost ARM based computer (about the size of an USB key) on: 2011-05-23 21:02:23
Hello,
any information about a release date?
Yes, one of the main inventors of this nice little computers, David Braben himself, said in one of the announcement videos that the device should be out for the (mass?) market in about one year or so.

I always loved the cool ARM processor, especially in the good old Acorn Archimedes days back then. Braben's Zarch (and then Conqueror) was just incredible.

Maybe Braben does a kind of Zarch-II for the launch of Raspberry? :-)  Java-Zarch? hihi.  I always love him because of Elite.

PS, just for nostalgia: Acorn ported Java to the ARM'ed Archie back then, I think already the A5000 run Java. Not today's OpenJDK, though...
18  Discussions / General Discussions / Re: HUGE CHANGES FOR JGO - PLEASE READ! on: 2010-12-21 15:03:37
The new forum's fast! Lovely.

Plus all the old posts of the users do count now. Well, database migrations have also their good sides. No greenhorn anymore. :-)

Thank you very much, Riven & ChrisM.
19  Java Game APIs & Engines / Android / 3d (game) engine? on: 2010-10-30 13:46:26
Hi,

Is there a professional Java 3D engine for Android?

Say you would like to have large, bones/skeleton animated 3d characters with skins, and some static models.
The 3d model and its many animations is already there and has to be imported from a professional 3d package (Maya, Blender, or such).

Currently I "just" see Ardor3d for Android which is in Alpha state (I didn't see it in action yet).
jMonkeyEngine announced an Android version but I don't see much talk about it...
jPCT surely is nice, but I absolutely need 3d model import _and_ bones animation.

Is Ardor and jMonkeyEngine comparable to C/C++ engines like Ogre, for example?

--

Well, I think this means Ardor... I saw its PC demos including the bones animated Collada import, which is nice, but no textures. However, the docu is minimal and the question is: will Ardor for Android have got all Ardor's PC version features or just a very cut down feature list?

In case Java 3d engines for Android are not up to the task (yet?), which professional "native" 3d engine would you recommend which works nicely together with Java @ Dalvik?

Thanks.
20  Discussions / Business and Project Management Discussions / Re: List of commercial games using Java? on: 2010-10-30 07:19:23
Edited, inluding an extra mention of Cas' newest Titan game. :-)

When there's an URL to a game available, I'm happy to include it.
21  Games Center / Archived Projects / Re: Fizzy Bricks on: 2010-10-27 15:55:50
Thanks Preston! To be fair, most of the heavy work is handled by JBox2D Smiley

You're welcome.
Kapta expressed it precisely: "Very nice, simple and highly polished."

So JBox2D does the heavy work? However, who made this "heavy work" accessible in a "light and happy" way? I think a certain "Kev" with his "Fizzy"... :-)
22  Discussions / General Discussions / Re: TROJ_JAVADL.A on: 2010-10-27 15:51:46
Riven is right, it's a must to have an installed Virus-Killer (an an Internet router firewall, too).

For example you (DzzD) could try the (free) AVG Antivirus from Europe, available for Windows or Linux: http://free.avg.com/
23  Games Center / 4K Game Competition - 2011 / Re: Preperations.. on: 2010-10-26 13:45:07
Who's going to write Minecraft4k then?
;-)
24  Games Center / Archived Projects / Re: Fizzy Bricks on: 2010-10-26 13:44:30
Very well done, Kev. As always.
Thanks for sharing it.

Two evenings? Unbelievable!
25  Discussions / General Discussions / Re: Mac App Store without Java on: 2010-10-26 10:36:59
It may be a niche market, but at the moment it's my preferred development environment.
Hi Orangy, nice to read you.
I fully understand you, and some of my Java friends use Mac OS X, too, which technically is nice.

"Niche" I didn't mean in a negative way; actually we Java developers know niche(s) very well! (Except for Markus Persson's Minecraft, hihi)

With "niche market" I wanted to say that Apples decision is not the end of the Java world.
(Also Mac applications can be distributed in the classic way, for example via own Web sites, without App Mac Store. Unfortunately the Store will attract the "masses"...)

Quote
If the JVM stops being available for Mac then I've got to either change language or OS, neither of which is a thrilling proposition. Angry
Yes, that would be very bad, and for the sake of Java and its community I hope Apple won't stop the JVM. Or in case they would, let's hope they help the official (Oracle) Java or OpenJDK or such a thing so that they can deliver a solid JVM for Mac OS X.
26  Discussions / Business and Project Management Discussions / Re: List of commercial games using Java? on: 2010-10-26 10:27:20
Thanks, very nice. Edited into the old list article.
27  Discussions / General Discussions / Re: Mac App Store without Java on: 2010-10-26 10:15:03
Apple is a disgusting company that has already demonstrated that their idea of a "computer" is a locked down appliance. Removing Java is just another step to lock it down further.

I don't know why some people are shocked. You should have seen this coming a long time ago.

Apple is worse than Microsoft.
Unfortunately this is true, I think.

It would be a terrible waste from Apples point of view to just abandon all the hard work they've put into it even if they have decided to no longer support it themselves.
I don't think that such egocentric people like Steve Jobs think in normal ways. They want something in their head and will take nearly any measure to achieve this, no matter how sensible it is.

This of course is not limited to Steve Jobs. I think Larry Ellison is similar. Higly egocentric. Smiley
In the ancient Rome such persons have been named with the well known Latin word "idiot".

On the other side, I don't think you've to worry too much. Apple Mac will always be some niche market. (Please note I don't say that Mac OS X is bad, but I agree with Thiagosc on Apple.)
Android will overtake iOS easily, starting 2011; actually it is already starting in number of sold Android devices compared to iPhones. The reason could be that the world's mobile manufacturers do not want to be Jobs' serfs). 
28  Discussions / Miscellaneous Topics / Re: GUI and language on: 2010-10-26 09:44:03
This is worthy of being a separate topic in it's own right, but I disagree with your point here. Although I think Java is one of the best examples of cross-platform software I've seen it's still far from perfect, and that's typically found with Swing and Java2D.
Yes, it would be worth a separate topic.

The "write once run everywhere" paradigm doesn't work perfect, indeed.
On the other side I don't think any human work could be perfect. :-)

I agree that Swing is somewhat difficult to make look the same or say "very similar" on different platforms, mainly because of different fonts I think.

By the way, does anybody know why Java doesn't use the same own vector fonts on any platform but relies on the platform's fonts and just maps "similar" ones to the Java logical ones? This way we've to put own fonts next to our application and load them in the Java program in order to look the same or "very similar"...

A carefully written Java2D application however can look and work in exactly the same way on many different platforms, for example if it's focused on Java2D and doesn't use Swing too extensively.

It all depends on what your application has to do or doesn't need to do...
29  Discussions / Business and Project Management Discussions / Re: List of commercial games using Java? on: 2010-10-25 09:04:35
Wow, what an old thread to necro Smiley
Indeed! ;-)

Quote
Theres a lot more commercial java games these days
Well, they're only starting to reach my field of view, but I can say it's really nice to see!

Quote
but yeh Minecraft is probably the most successful indie game ever.
Yes, amazing.
30  Discussions / Miscellaneous Topics / Re: GUI and language on: 2010-10-25 08:58:37
Hi, I understand your question. Unfortunately it's all not very simple.

Quote
Why are GUI inserted in language? Like Java has his own GUI, C++ has his own GUI and so on.
Java as a "system", ie JVMs on many very different platforms, has its own GUI and this is helpful.

However C++ or other languages do not. You have totally different GUIs for C/C++ on Win32, Linux, Unix, etc. and even these platforms have very different GUI systems (Gnome, KDE, Xfce, Qt, etc etc).


If you use Netbeans (or Eclipse?) it's comfortable to design small and midle-sized GUIs with the mouse and some graphically connected event handlers, plus a more code for your application's logic.

Such a GUI'ed application you can use on many different platforms and it will look and feel very similar.

If you focus on Java and take all the "do's and don'ts" into account, you can deliver GUI'ed applications no matter what platform they have to run on. The old Java motto "Write once run everywhere" wasn't working very well in the beginning of Java, but since several years it is.
Everything takes its time.
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