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1  Discussions / Miscellaneous Topics / Re: Ian Allen, my good friend and top "tester" died and is becoming famous! on: 2015-01-23 13:40:28
Sorry for your loss.

But it's awesome that he's getting the recognition he deserves.
2  Game Development / Newbie & Debugging Questions / Re: Starting to develop games. on: 2015-01-22 23:01:01
- Should I try to make my own engine,

Absolutely not.

or use one that is already made? And which one?
- My games are going to be 2D only for now. What libraries should I use?

None. Start out with basic Java. Write Pong, or Flappy Bird. Get a few tiny games under your belt, then revisit the idea of libraries.
3  Discussions / General Discussions / Re: Most graphically polished (HD)3D games developed in Java? on: 2015-01-21 15:43:25
If you write enough Java, you will want to upgrade to something else.

I don't want to start a flame war, but uh... [citation needed]
4  Discussions / General Discussions / Re: Posting in wrong thread on: 2015-01-20 18:04:47
If you set 'Return to topics after posting by default.' in Profile > Look and Layout Preferences (if it in't already) then at least you should be able to immediately see the error.

Holy cow, you just saved me from a minor annoyance that's been bugging me forever.

What other minor annoyances can you help me with?
5  Game Development / Newbie & Debugging Questions / Re: Pixel color filter on: 2015-01-20 16:58:56
What are you doing this in? Java2D? LWJGL? JOGL? Something else?

Can you post an MCVE that demonstrates what you've tried? You've posted an approach, what happened when you tried to implement it?

What exactly do you mean when you say "I guess I'm wrong"? Are you seeing an error? Some kind of unexpected behavior? Something else?
6  Game Development / Newbie & Debugging Questions / Re: [libgdx] So many ways to deal with different android DPI/Resolutions.... Which? on: 2015-01-17 02:06:06
The question of "which is right for me" can only be answered by you. Different developers are going to have different approaches, and you should really do whatever makes the most sense to you.

What resolutions are you targeting? If your answer is "all of them", what are some of the biggest and smallest?

I personally just target 1280x800 and just scale down. But you should do whatever makes the most sense to you.
7  Game Development / Game Mechanics / Re: Where to correct position in collision detection (best practice) on: 2015-01-17 02:01:33
There really isn't a huge difference, and there is no one single correct answer. Different people will prefer different approaches.

It also depends on the game- what kinds of collisions are you talking about?

Mostly, just make sure you catch all of the collisions you care about (don't miss instances where you move *through* a barrier between frames, for example), and then go with whichever approach makes the most sense in your brain.
8  Discussions / General Discussions / Re: Most graphically polished (HD)3D games developed in Java? on: 2015-01-16 15:59:20
Unity being based on C# means it very much is a real programming language though...

Fair enough. I've never used it. I'm just going off of what I've heard other people say, which is probably biased.

I just meant that people from a "programming" background might be more likely to stick with Java, whereas people from an "art" background might be more likely to go with Unity. It's just a thought, I have no actual numbers or anything to back it up.
9  Java Game APIs & Engines / Java 2D / Re: Dynamic lighting from scratch on: 2015-01-16 14:55:47
Time to profile your code and figure out what's causing the lag. Try adding print statements with the elapsed time of each section, see which section takes the most time. Then go into that section and see which part of that section takes the most time. Repeat until you know what's causing the lag. Good luck!

If you want more specific help, you'll have to provide an MCVE.
10  Discussions / General Discussions / Re: Most graphically polished (HD)3D games developed in Java? on: 2015-01-16 14:52:18
This is mostly due to great art direction, and not so much to a game engine with a bunch of fancy-pants features.

Yeah, exactly. OP is asking "what programming language will let me have the best art" and the answer is "none of them". Art is completely separate from what language you use.

However, I wonder if people think that Unity games look better because more "artists who want to be programmers" start out there, as opposed to us "programmers who wish we were artists" sticking with a "real" programming language?
11  Discussions / General Discussions / Re: Looking for beginner game developer guidance on: 2015-01-16 02:33:10
There is no use of any form of game libraries in these videos. I know that it is extra work, but is it stupid to even bother with it? Should I just focus on Processing or LibGDX?

It really depends on what you're already comfortable with, what your end goal is, your style of learning, etc. It's pretty hard to give you a one-size-fits-all suggestion, because there isn't one. What's "best" is different for every single person.

If you're asking me for my two cents though, I would really suggest starting out in Processing, and working through the basics. Get a Pong clone working (shameless self-promotion: the tutorials I posted take you through exactly that), and then try adding features to it- powerups, enemies, whatever you can think of.

Then work through cloning other simple games- flappy bird, space invaders, asteroids, etc.

After you have a few of those types of games under your belt, then think about creating your own simple game.

When you're comfortable with making simple games in Processing, then you might think about moving to Java, and on to more complicated frameworks like LWJGL, libGDX, JOGL. JMonkeyEngine, etc.

Processing is great for getting something up and running very quickly, and is perfect for simple games. Eventually you'll want to move on to "real" Java, and you might make a few Java2D games just to get the feel of things. You'll eventually want to move on to something like libGDX (fancier graphics, physics, lighting, deploying to Android, etc). But I wouldn't recommend jumping right into libGDX, which is why I'm recommending trying Processing first, then working your way up through pure Java and eventually on to libGDX.

So that's my two cents: if you're just starting out, try Processing just to get your feet wet. Don't worry about what comes next until after you've made a few simple games. It's easy to get overwhelmed, so focus on the next goal. If I were you, that goal would be making Pong in Processing.

As for books, I don't really know. I don't really learn programming from books very well. I'd much rather follow tutorials!
12  Discussions / General Discussions / Re: Looking for beginner game developer guidance on: 2015-01-15 22:39:45
If you're just starting out, I highly suggest looking into Processing. It's built on top of Java, but it's designed to make it very easy to get something visual and interactive up and running in no time.

From there you can work your way up through Java and eventually on to more complicated things like libGDX, but for starting out I highly recommend Processing.

Shameless self-promotion: In fact, I've written a series of tutorials that take you from the absolute basics in Processing, through developing your first game, and on to Java. They're available here: Static Void Games
13  Discussions / Miscellaneous Topics / Re: Article: The Rise and Fall of the Lone Game Developer on: 2015-01-15 14:56:45
I really, really don't think it's easier to get into programming at all. You don't just turn it on and there it is, ready to do stuff.

I would argue that that's exactly what Code.org's goal is. Check out their tutorial page: http://code.org/learn

That's filled with different ways for kids to start programming games (like Flappy Bird or Angry Birds.. what's with all the bird games), start programming for iPhone (in ways that "just work" without any setup), etc.

Sure, this isn't aimed at people like us, and it's not aimed at making the next blockbuster indie game. It's aimed at the absolute basics, getting kids thinking in terms of programming, preparing them for the next step. That's the part that I'm saying is easier- the "starting out" part.

And that translates into being more prepared for the next step, actually sitting down and writing real code. Now people won't go into it blind and hit "the wall" that causes so many novices to quit their first programming class. So, in a way, even getting into the "higher levels" of programming are made easier through initiatives like this.

This is just starting out, so I guess we can debate the effectiveness of all of this, but I'm pretty excited to see where we go in the next few years.
14  Discussions / Miscellaneous Topics / Re: Article: The Rise and Fall of the Lone Game Developer on: 2015-01-15 14:43:54
What we don't hear about is the other 999 games that barely made a bean. The ratio is better or worse in some markets, but the basic principle is the same: we hear all the time about the successes. Try and tell someone about a failure and... well, that's not so interesting (and thus the cycle of failure continues).

This was exactly my problem with Indie Game the Movie. At the end I was like "okay but what about the 1000 other people whose games failed?"
15  Discussions / Miscellaneous Topics / Re: Article: The Rise and Fall of the Lone Game Developer on: 2015-01-15 14:41:15
It is and it isn't....

The problem is that as computers have gotten immensely more powerful, they've become correspondingly immensely more complex. The tools we have merely "expand to fit". Some aspects of programming have gotten somewhat easier but complexity remains an enormous barrier even now.

Fair enough. And I've heard that argument from other "old school" programmers before: "yeah, I had to walk uphill both ways in the middle of the night just to run my punch-card programs on the single mainframe at school... but nowadays kids are programming for iPhone, and I have no idea how to do that!"

But I dunno, I'm picturing a 10-year-old girl who plays Angry Birds on her iPhone and wants to start programming her own games. She goes through Code.org's tutorials (which are indeed designed for 10-year-old girls), and within a week she has an Angry Bird clone up and running.

Compare that to how it was in the 70s and 80s: how many 10-year-old girls were learning how to program back then?

And sure, we can get into a debate about "well that's not actually programming", but the point is, that little girl now has the foundations and the interest, in a way that wouldn't have been possible 30, 20, or even 10 years ago. She can take that knowledge and more easily get into the next level, whatever that is. There's something really cool about that to me.

And that's why I kinda cringe at the article: sure, a side-effect of programming becoming more open is that it's harder for us typical programming types (white dudes) to stay at the top. But it's also easier for non-typical programmers to get into the industry. And how is that a bad thing?

So I guess that's my point: it's easier to **get into** programming. Sure, once you're at the top, it might be just as difficult.. but does everybody need to be on the top just to make a game? I'm not so sure that's true anymore, especially considering the fact that most indie games are made in Unity!
16  Discussions / Miscellaneous Topics / Re: Article: The Rise and Fall of the Lone Game Developer on: 2015-01-15 14:19:01
I really learnt to program with the manual that came with the computer. Back then, manuals were serious documentation. The manual for my second computer even included circuit diagrams.

In fact, I don't agree that it's easier than ever to get into programming.

I mean, doesn't that sorta prove my point? Back in the "golden days" you had to trudge through some serious documentation, basically be an engineer. Now you can download a copy of Game Maker and start making a game in about 10 minutes.

And with movements like Code.org trying to (and succeeding at) convincing schools to start teaching programming (in kindergarten!), how is it *not* easier to get into programming? Couple that with the fact that *everybody* has a computer in their pocket (not just geeks in a basement trudging away), and I'm not sure how it's possible that it's just as hard to get into programming today as it was back then.

I expected pushback on my "the golden days sucked" comment, but I'm pretty surprised that anybody thinks it's equally difficult to get into programming today as it was 40 years ago.
17  Discussions / Miscellaneous Topics / Re: Article: The Rise and Fall of the Lone Game Developer on: 2015-01-15 14:13:30
Take FEZ for example...

It is these things I miss about most modern day games...

Do you not count Fez as a modern-day game?  Shocked
18  Discussions / Miscellaneous Topics / Re: Article: The Rise and Fall of the Lone Game Developer on: 2015-01-15 01:16:32
Do you, or anyone else, think that these indie games you mentioned will be able to maintain a large enough income to provide for their creators?

Why wouldn't they?

Even the "article" says that it's a trade-off: small teams and single-person indie developers can take high risks (read: make experimental games), because they aren't dealing with multi-million dollar investments. If they fail (and they do fail, all the time), the worst case scenario is that they have to go back to their day job. But with that greater ability to experiment comes the greater potential reward.

We can do crazy experimental things like Minecraft, or spend years on a single game like Fez, or even just get lucky like Flappy Bird. We can put out a dozen little games this year, see which one gets any traction, and spend next year polishing that single game up. Big studios put all their chips on one game, so that one game better be a success. And the best way to guarantee success is by sticking with what they know works.

So our niche is going to be around that ability to take risks, and the upside of that risk is the associated greater potential return.

Sure, only .001% of us will scratch out a living, and even fewer will ever make it big. But that's not really why we do it, is it?
19  Discussions / Miscellaneous Topics / Re: Article: The Rise and Fall of the Lone Game Developer on: 2015-01-14 21:54:05
Yeah I dunno, something about this article just didn't sit right with me. Maybe it's the dumbed-down buzzfeed "pictures every other sentence" style.

But more than that, it's the question: what else did anybody expect? What else would we want?

The "golden days" where "one person" could create a game, by today's standards... they sucked. Only people who were *really dedicated* (as in, more dedicated than most of today's programmers, probably including myself) could make a game. I mean really, if you had to learn how to program by manually copying machine language from a magazine, how many of us would have learned how to program?

Looking back on it, we only see the successes- and many of the successes he lists on his page were NOT done by a single person, but by relatively large teams! And that's only the 1% of games that were worth remembering anyway. What about the other 99%? Go download an emulator and pick out the rom of a RANDOM (not one you remember) game. I'll bet you an appreciation that it sucks, or was developed by an entire team of people.

So this "golden age" that's being trumped up... it never really happened.

I will admit that it's easier than ever to get into programming. But how can that be a bad thing as a whole?

It's also easy to become an artist. Or a musician. The "starving artist" stereotype is just a symptom of how many people START pursuing these goals, and how few people sit at the top of the fame and success ladder. But does that mean that nobody should start learning how to play the guitar? Does that mean that nobody should start learning how to paint? Nope.

And it also doesn't mean that people shouldn't learn how to program, either.

Whenever this argument comes up, I picture how scribes must have reacted when more people started learning how to read and write. "Ugh, now that the commoners can read and write for themselves, my craft is so diluted with inanity!"
20  Java Game APIs & Engines / Java 2D / Re: Dynamic lighting from scratch on: 2015-01-12 21:47:17
This is in the Java2D section, so I'm going to assume you're using Java2D and not OpenGL or shaders.

The easiest way is to just use an image mask that is completely transparent at the light source, then fades to black further from the light source. Overlay that on top of your game, and voila, you've got lighting.

Do a google image search of "game development lighting source" or something. Or here's a StackOverflow question with more info: http://gamedev.stackexchange.com/questions/22159/can-i-achieve-a-torchlight-effect-lighter-area-around-a-light-source-in-a-2d-g
21  Java Game APIs & Engines / Engines, Libraries and Tools / Re: [libgdx] Hosting js/html5 files: SecurityError due to different origins on: 2015-01-08 17:10:31
Thanks for the reply!

The S3 server is a subdomain of StaticVoidGames.

Apparently the problem is caused by JavaScript not being able to access iFrames between origins, even on subdomains, and even if CORS is enabled? I don't really know what I'm talking about.

What I eventually decided to do was just have a link on the game page (on StaticVoidGames) that goes directly to the index file on S3, instead of trying to embed the JavaScript on StaticVoidGames. Embedding the game on StaticVoidGames had issues with focus and whatnot, so this is probably the correct way to go anyway. Simpler for the user, simpler for the person uploading the game, and simpler for me.
22  Game Development / Game Play & Game Design / Re: Lost beauties of Game Design on: 2015-01-08 00:04:47
f**k hit submit topic by accident

You are terrible at keeping secrets!

 Tongue
23  Game Development / Game Play & Game Design / Re: Picking level to play on: 2015-01-07 15:48:58
I think that the idea we're all hinting at is that it has to be fun and engaging to just **move around** for this to work. Would it be fun and engaging to move around in this world **if there weren't any doors to the different levels**? If it was **just moving around** and nothing else, would it still be fun?

In our above examples:

Sworcery was just fun and engaging to walk around in because of the art, music, atmosphere, etc. I would play a game that was **just walking around** in that game.

Fez is similar- just walking around was fun and engaging. That entire game was arguably just walking around, since there weren't any enemies or anything!

Even in Kirby, the level-selection "meta level" was fun. The platforms were fun to get to, you could try out different abilities, etc. You could just waste time screwing around in the level-selection area, and that was fun.

Another one that comes to mind is Spider-Man 2 for PS2. Just slinging around the city was really fun, because the web slinging felt strangely realistic- and in fact, the developer of that mechanic, Jamie Fristrom, is making an indie game (Energy Hook) around exactly that.

This is a pretty true goal of every game: **just moving around in it** should be interesting by itself, since that's probably what most of the game is anyway. But if you're going to have a big section of the game (the level selection you're talking about) devoted to it, then you better make sure that it's extra interesting.
24  Game Development / Game Play & Game Design / Re: Picking level to play on: 2015-01-07 00:54:36
This reminds me of how the original Kirby (for NES, back in 1993) did its level selection.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LyU-mKTAauk

Skip to a few seconds after 8 minutes, where Kirby beats the first level and then selects the second level.

Oh man this is bringing me back...
25  Game Development / Game Play & Game Design / Re: Picking level to play on: 2015-01-06 19:32:25
Personally, it sounds pretty annoying. Especially for a mobile game, which people only play for a few minutes at a time. If your level picker takes up that few minutes, that's going to leave no time for playing, which isn't very fun.

However, if you make it so the player doesn't lose **any** progress, either in the level picker or in the level itself, then it might not so bad. I'm thinking of how Sworcery did it, where the entire game was split into individual sections (which was slightly bigger than a single screen), and the game automatically saved when you went into a new section. In that game, you had to walk all over the place, but since the walking was split up into the sections, it wasn't that big of a deal.

I guess Fez is similar in that regard.

Of course, that will only work if getting around in the level picker is actually fun. Sworcery was just sorta fun to walk around in, but if all you've got is a typical platformer with mediocre (or even good but not great) art, nobody is going to want to spend 5 minutes just walking to the next level.

But in the end, it's completely up to YOU. If it sounds interesting to program, and if it's a mechanic you'd like to play with, then I say go for it. It doesn't really matter what we say. Just try it out and see what happens.
26  Game Development / Newbie & Debugging Questions / Re: How to instal Java 8 over 7 on: 2015-01-06 17:17:12
I recently released a new version of a game I was writing and someone replied that it won't run with his Java 8.

I tried installing the latest JDK on my Win 7 PC. It said it loaded fine. I then tried to see whether it was running fine with
1  
2  
3  
4  
java -version
java version "1.7.0_21"
Java(TM) SE Runtime Environment (build 1.7.0_21-b11)
Java HotSpot(TM) 64-Bit Server VM (build 23.21-b01, mixed mode)

So am I running Java 8?
Will users with Java 7 now not be able to play?
Is there a simple solution?

Cheers Mike

Back on topic:

Mike, I highly suggest you figure out *why* the game doesn't work. It might be that you forgot to include a resource that's only on your computer, or it requires some native library, etc. This has *nothing* to do with the version of Java you're using, so any work you put in towards any of the suggestions any of us have given you will be wasted time.

Have your friend run your jar through the command prompt. Does he see any errors there?

Or if you want to test Java 8 on your system- mostly all you need to do is modify your PATH variable to point to Java 8. Or if you want to be absolutely sure, first uninstall every version of Java from your computer completely, then install Java 8.

If you compile your program with Java 8, then by default, people with Java 7 (or 6 or 5 or 4 or...) will not be able to run your jar. There are compiler settings (I think ags1 mentioned them above) to get around that.

However, the reverse is *not* true: code compiled in Java 7 should work for somebody running it with Java 8 (or 9 or 10 or...). That's why it's weird that your friend can't run your program, and it's why I suspect the problem is not what you think it is.

I would bet that your friend is either running Java 6 (which can't run code compiled with Java 7, unless you use the compiler settings ags1 pointed out), or there's a missing resource.

You might also link us to the jar so we can try it ourselves.
27  Game Development / Newbie & Debugging Questions / Re: How to instal Java 8 over 7 on: 2015-01-06 16:28:30
For the record: I don't have any problem with gouessej's tool, in fact I've never tried it.

My preferred method of deployment is to use libGDX, export to html5 for a demo that everybody can try (no install, no Java, no whatever), then have a "full" Android app. That's actually what I'm working on right now, getting libGDX deployment to work on my site.

For Java applications, I prefer to just use a jar. I understand that "real" games should use an installer, but that's overkill for most of my little projects (and, if we're being honest, for most of the projects on this forum). If I was the OP, I'd be focusing on *why* the game isn't working on Java 8, not trying to find a workaround.

So I don't really have a horse in this race. My only argument is that there's more than one way to skin a cat. Somebody might even use JWrapper to export to Windows and Mac, then use gouessej's tool for GNU.

I just think it's funny that we have this discussion every time somebody asks about packing the JRE with a game!
28  Game Development / Newbie & Debugging Questions / Re: How to instal Java 8 over 7 on: 2015-01-06 14:09:02
It does seem strange that something would run in Java 7 but not Java 8. If I were you, I'd want to track down what's causing that. Have you tried completely uninstalling all Java from your system, then installing Java 8? Can you have your friend run your jar via the command prompt to see any errors that are happening? Maybe it works on your machine but not on others because of some resource?

You might want to check out JWrapper, which can export your Java application as a platform specific application for any of the major operating systems.

But this discussion always spawns a debate about the best tool to use. Here comes gouessej in 3, 2, 1...  Grin
29  Game Development / Newbie & Debugging Questions / Re: Libgdx Wavy line on: 2015-01-05 22:18:59
f***sake you got me addicted to cookie clicker again ...

Yeah I was going to say, links to Cookie Clicker should have a warning like links to TV Tropes...
30  Games Center / Showcase / Re: A Top Down Shooter with a Shyamalan Twist on: 2015-01-05 22:17:33
I've suspected that Notch would start releasing little games under new anonymous names.

I believe this confirms that suspicion.
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2015-01-12 03:11:59
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2015-01-01 20:25:42

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by gouessej
2014-12-27 19:41:21

Resources for WIP games
by kpars
2014-12-18 10:26:14

Understanding relations between setOrigin, setScale and setPosition in libGdx
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2014-10-09 22:35:00

Definite guide to supporting multiple device resolutions on Android (2014)
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2014-10-02 22:36:02

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by Longor1996
2014-08-16 10:40:00

List of Learning Resources
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2014-08-05 19:33:27

Resources for WIP games
by CogWheelz
2014-08-01 16:20:17
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