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1  Game Development / Newbie & Debugging Questions / Re: What next? on: 2012-03-05 05:53:20
Personally, I'd recommend doing some 2D stuff in OpenGL
2  Game Development / Game Play & Game Design / Re: 2D Tile Map + Camera on: 2012-03-01 19:19:32
Drawing the map pixel by pixel is probably not the most efficient way to render your map.  I would either draw the image once if you are using it as a background, or create tiles of larger size (eg 16x16) which you render individually.
3  Discussions / General Discussions / Re: SCRATCH : An excellent tool for learning the basics of programming on: 2012-02-28 07:43:04
I actually had to use Scratch in a college class my first semester. I found it pretty useful for learning the basics but don't expect to do anything too exciting with it. I believe my university uses it in a tutor program to teach third graders the basics of programming.
4  Discussions / General Discussions / Re: How Long Have You Been Coding? on: 2012-02-28 07:37:54
Been coding for a little over a year now.  I've done some very basic stuff in OpenGL but haven't had the time to look into it too seriously.  Hopefully this summer I'll have more time to really get my hands dirty
5  Game Development / Newbie & Debugging Questions / Re: Where should I start in Java Gaming / Starting off with a 2D Sidescroller on: 2012-02-27 06:37:25
If you're just learning the syntax, I don't mean to discourage you, but you're gonna have to be a bit patient before you leap into making graphical applications.  My best advice is to be rock-solid in object oriented concepts before you take the step into 2D games.
6  Game Development / Newbie & Debugging Questions / Re: Looking for where to Start with 2D games in Java. Help? on: 2012-02-21 23:58:18
For 2D games, I would start with something REALLY simple.  My first game was a Tetris clone.  By starting with something simple like Tetris, you can focus on the basic constructs that go into making a game, (the game loop, handling input, updating graphics, game state, etc.) without having to worry about complex graphics (pretty much anyone can draw a Tetris block) or about AI.  Once you have finished a game like Tetris, Pong, or Breakout, you will have a good idea of how ready you are to move on to more complex stuff.

As far as graphics go, you can start with Java2D, which I know a lot of people do.  It's pretty easy to work with and abstracts away most of the more low-level stuff.  However, you might find it more useful, albeit more difficult, to start with something like Slick2D, as Java2D will only take you so far, and it's likely that you'll eventually want to move on to something else. 

Edit: Personally, I have very limited experience with Java2D, and made my first game with OpenGL, so it is possible.  I've only heard from others about the performance issues concerning Java2D as things get more complex.
7  Game Development / Newbie & Debugging Questions / Re: What do I need to learn? on: 2012-02-21 15:59:35
I think isometric is the word you're looking for.  However, Catacomb Snatcher (correct me if I'm wrong) seems to be  just a top-down tilemap, and not isometric.  Basically just a grid of rectangular tiles with the player able to move halfway through the near walls to give it the appearance of "depth".  Making a tilemap like this would be pretty easy.  I think main challenge would be creating the AI for the enemies and turrets.  I would do some research on making tower defense games to get a feel for how the turrets should work.   
8  Game Development / Game Mechanics / Re: Variable step timing - Good or bad? on: 2012-02-21 15:50:27
If you want to keep it simple.  Just render and update the simulation at 60Hz and if you slow down...so be  it.

This is what I've done with my game loop and it seems to work fine so far.
9  Game Development / Game Play & Game Design / Re: Game Graphics Style Opinions on: 2012-02-21 03:43:52
As for the graphics style, I'm not sure if this was what you were intending to do in the first place, but I would consider the idea of leaving the sort of "paper and pencil" style and drawing off that for the other graphics in the game.  Would give it a really unique feel and I think you could execute it well.
10  Game Development / Newbie & Debugging Questions / Re: I'm a noob to Java, can you point me in the right direction? on: 2012-02-20 20:17:37
Try making a couple simple games like Pong or Tetris at this stage.
I agree with evilfrenchguy. Start with something really simple, not with an MMORPG.

Stay away from IDEs like Eclipse or Netbeans while you're learning so you don't get used to having that crutch. Notepad is fine, but a simple IDE is Textpad. (textpad.com)
I agree with him again. You should understand how Java works underneath before using IDEs so that they really help you to become more productive without making you waste some time when something does not work as expected.

Finally, maybe have a look at JogAmp (JOGL + JOCL + JOAL).

I don't think we should jump too far ahead right from the beginning.  You have to know and understand the basics (i.e. command line applications) before you can even consider looking at graphics libraries.  Rather than starting with Pong or Tetris (which can be quite daunting tasks for a Java beginner), start with something really basic, like a number guessing game.  Now of course, this doesn't apply if you've had a good deal of programming experience prior to Java, but from a true beginner's perspective, one must understand and have a solid base in the fundamentals before jumping into graphical applications.
11  Games Center / Featured Games / Re: Beasts & Pirates on: 2012-02-20 19:03:51
Wow that artstyle looks great!  Keep up the good work!
12  Game Development / Newbie & Debugging Questions / Re: I'm a noob to Java, can you point me in the right direction? on: 2012-02-20 18:30:16
I would suggest starting out writing command line stuff with simple console input and output and become comfortable with the basic concepts before you jump into AWT or Swing. 
13  Discussions / Miscellaneous Topics / Re: What're a nice headset? on: 2012-02-20 04:50:25
I was in a similar dilemma a few years back, never really been impressed with the quality of gaming headsets.  What I ended up doing was getting a nice pair of headphones.  I already had an audio interface and a mic, but you can find decent USB mics that will outperform the mic on any gaming headset for under $100.  As far as blocking out background noise, I just got used to using push-to-talk and never turned back.


Also...shoutout from a fellow MOBA gamer!!
14  Game Development / Game Mechanics / Re: Chunks and Collisions on: 2012-02-20 04:24:28
It could be because you're doing a modulus on a floating point number. Since floats aren't stored exactly, it could lead to slight variations in results compared to what you would expect.  This might explain the weird off by one errors.
15  Game Development / Game Mechanics / Re: Variable step timing - Good or bad? on: 2012-02-20 04:18:17
The lack of accuracy is likely just due the the fact that there is more time between updates.  More time between updates means more entity movement between updates and the potential for an entity to move into and then out of collision with another entity before the game is updated. Also puzzled as to why you would want to cap the FPS at 5...
16  Game Development / Newbie & Debugging Questions / Re: Best Library for 2D game development? Your experience. on: 2012-02-20 04:11:11
If you're making the game with the intention of learning, you could always just use LWJGL with Slick-util for textures and audio.

Otherwise, I've been using Slick and TWL for my 2D game and have found both pretty useful.
17  Game Development / Newbie & Debugging Questions / Re: Pac-man game, making walls on: 2012-02-20 04:04:10
As for collision detection, I would create a mob class with the code for creating the rectangles and then subclass it into player and ghost classes to handle the collisions.
18  Game Development / Game Play & Game Design / Re: Game Graphics Style Opinions on: 2012-02-19 17:07:00
I like the graphics style of the battle zone.  Very dark, post-apocalyptic kind of feel.
19  Discussions / General Discussions / Re: Recommend me a route... on: 2012-02-19 16:22:09
As far as 2D graphics libraries, what I've ended up doing was implementing my own 2D engine with minimal use of Slick2D (for texture and audio loading).  While this can take a bit longer, it allows for a much deeper understanding of what's going on in the interior (less magic).  If you are making your first "real game" like I am, the benefits of knowing how stuff works outweigh the negatives of taking a bit longer to implement.  I suppose you could use libGDX for this as well, but I don't have experience using it, so I can't really comment on it. 
20  Game Development / Newbie & Debugging Questions / Re: Java game - time on: 2012-02-18 19:36:58
It depends.  Do you want the clock to actually stop updating when you pause, or simply stop displaying updates?
21  Discussions / General Discussions / Re: Game programming capabilities on: 2012-02-18 19:33:53
Haha not sure why I would get negative responses, my aim is simply to gain experience. I always jump ahead of myself and end up getting stuck, so why not start with more simpler programs and progressively work my way up to more complex programs? I'm currently working on tetris and i'm having a bit of trouble. But i'll get there Smiley and nws ra4king

I recently completed a Tetris clone myself and I found this site to be very helpful.  http://tetrisconcept.net/wiki/Main_Page

It gives good deal of info on the underlying mechanics, could be useful if you find yourself getting stuck.
22  Discussions / General Discussions / Re: Recommend me a route... on: 2012-02-18 19:30:17
@the idea being cliché

it all comes down to writing
what you are stating is just a premise
with the right characters, dialogues, scenes and scenery
stuff happening

my point is, its a broad topic nevertheless and you can do good.

Agreed.  There are a wide variety of paths you can go down when writing a story about a totalitarian state.  IMO the way you develop the characters/conflicts will be more important than the overarching theme of the story.
23  Game Development / Newbie & Debugging Questions / Re: New to Java Games! on: 2012-02-18 17:43:11
I don't see any reason why an RPG couldn't work as a first game as long as you have the patience and motivation to stick with it even when you get frustrated.  Although, it will be significantly harder to learn the basic constructs of making games while dealing with the depth of an RPG.
24  Game Development / Newbie & Debugging Questions / Re: Displaying a Tile Map help needed on: 2012-02-14 14:29:36
Like elamre said, it might be easier to store the map in an external map file and then make a simple parser to interpret the file, if only for readability's sake.  Initializing a 2D array with all the tiles could get pretty messy once you have a large map.
25  Discussions / General Discussions / Re: [Platformer Game Engine Series of releases?] on: 2012-02-01 15:33:48
I like the idea, could be of help for newbies, especially if you document your problems implementing each part along the way.  Also, nitpicking a little, but for commenting methods, I'd suggest Javadoc comments to make them easier to organize and easier for people to access the documentation.
26  Discussions / General Discussions / Hi everyone! on: 2012-02-01 15:27:03
Hi all, I've been lurking this forum for a couple of weeks now, and finally decided to make an account.  I'm a 2nd year computer science student, and have been writing Java code for ~1 year now.  As far as experience programming games, over my xmas break, I wrote a pretty decent Tetris clone in C#, but other than that, I'm still a beginner.  Currently, I'm working on what will hopefully become a side-scrolling, MOBA-like game.   I look forward to getting to know you all and becoming a member of a great Java gaming community!
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