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  New rules regarding Game Engine topics  (Read 28251 times)
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Offline Riven
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Hand over your head.


« Posted 2015-01-05 18:15:32 »

Too many members of our reasonably sized community spent their valuable time plugging their teeny tiny little game engines to the general public. Although it can be worth spending a few rainy afternoons attempting to write a game engine, trying to plug said game engine to fellow developers is considered (by yours truly) highly unproductive, given that practically nobody capable of writing a small game, will be able to take advantage of these game engines, given they are usually written by novices that learn the basics while developing.

Game Engines (especially small ones) are going to be tied to a genre, a visual style or, to introduce my final point, a developer. Your engine matches your knowledge level, your skill, your games. It's virtually useless to anybody else. Mostly because - and you'll agree with this in a few years - it's utter rubbish. It's a bug ridden, poorly designed can of worms. I hate to break it to you (well, not really, but I'm nice and all).

The most important matter is whether your game engine is useless to you. Mostly likely not, actually! It might allow you to develop some small games, and learn a lot from the experience. Note, however, that the emphasis is on games. Developing, publishing, maintaining games is the narrow and twisty winding road to success. Actively pushing teeny tiny little engines is going to hurt your progress and, equally important, your reputation. Keep it to yourself - not to polish your crafty little turd - squeeze it in arbitrary shapes to support your shiny new games. Amaze us!


Having said that: game engine threads will be, effective immediately, moved to 'Archived Projects' and not count towards your 'Projects' stat anymore! Pointing Please note you will still be able to make updates in your thread - it won't be locked. For those that take offense: please don't. This rule has been put in place to take away some of the incentive. It is by no means meant to disregard your work - although my personal opinion is that you should focus on games instead, given the spirit of JGO.

*gasp*



Flame away!

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Offline kpars
« Reply #1 - Posted 2015-01-05 18:44:13 »

While I don't want to bring back the whole engine vs. library debate, will this apply to libraries and other tools as well?

Libraries, unlike engines, aren't made to assist in creating games of only one or two certain genres. There are quite a few projects out there that dub themselves as an 'engine' when they're really just low-level frameworks to help them do whatever. I'd hate to see many libraries out there get thrown into oblivion because of this confusion; some of them actually do bring something new to the table and it's pretty interesting watching the development of them.

Granted, you do make an excellent point on why actual engines are essentially useless to others. If you don't actually have a team of professional, paid developers making an engine for a variety of different games, chances are not that many people are going to use them for their own projects unless they're very expandable.

However I disagree a bit with moving them to 'Archived Projects'. Why not make another board/sub-board for them? In my opinion, an extra "Community Tools" board or something similar would be a much better solution to this. I also think that tools, useful or not, should still count as projects.

While I'm all for actually making games and often think that this community is nothing but a bunch of hobbyists trying to be good programmers, we shouldn't stop people from posting about their own tools just because a few of them are just made for the hell of it.

I know a lot of people who've worked very hard on their tools and have actually made a lot of progress with them. We shouldn't stop them from sharing their work just because of a few hobbyists nuts out there.

I think you should still allow them to be shared with the community. If they're half-assed, so what? People will ignore those anyway.

I'm glad you've done this, but I don't necessarily agree with stopping people from posting them altogether.

- Jev
Offline Riven
Administrator

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Medals: 1356
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Hand over your head.


« Reply #2 - Posted 2015-01-05 18:54:35 »

*points raised about tools*
Game Engines are little more than a set of tools and libraries. Standalone tools and libraries are not frowned upon at all. An audio library for example is usually extremely helpful to get things up and running quickly. Libraries and tools should specialize on a small subset of functionality, and excel at it. Once it turns into a clutter, it raises the bar to both adopt and maintain it. If you feel you have an engine with little gems hidden in it: split it up into independent libraries and create a few topics in the WIP/toys/tools board. This helps you focusing on your end user, and helps the end user to actually find and take advantage your work.

I'm glad you've done this, but I don't necessarily agree with stopping people from posting them altogether.
I'm not stopping people from posting. Everything is still the same, except the board in which the topic resides, and therefore the member stats, and therefore the ranking, and therefore... persecutioncomplex but everything else: the same.

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Offline divxdede
« Reply #3 - Posted 2015-01-05 19:00:02 »

For continue on the kpars response.

A big difference in the picture between a "game post" and a "game engine post" is the lifetime of the project.

A game even if it will jave few updates and patch should change slowly over the time and not so actively while it is published. A static topic page that describe a such project fit well.
A game engine has a lifecycle more dynamic and must have more frequent maintainance since feedbacks and evolution are mades. You can't so efficiently maintain a static forum topic as well for such projects.

All "game engine" topic without any activity from a while could be moved on the "Archive" forum as Riven do.
In the counterparts, active ones (if it's still have one ?) should remains or moved somewhere else ?

So, all that for said, that a better approach for theses projects is to build an index-directory page that list all of theses projects and provide url to point on the official project's site like a "resources page" could do.
It could give a better visibility for such projects and a better resource finder for thoses need it.

it's my 2 cent's that worth what it worth since i push on this forum 0 game and 0 game engine Tongue

Sébastien.
Offline lcass
« Reply #4 - Posted 2015-01-05 19:07:27 »

Is mercury staying? That seems more than just a single developer engine and is written by very experienced programmers.
Offline Ecumene

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« Reply #5 - Posted 2015-01-05 19:15:23 »

Is mercury staying? That seems more than just a single developer engine and is written by very experienced programmers.

Now we have to judge who's engine's are better for everyone else. I don't think archiving them all solves the problem, but judging who deserves to stay is worse Clueless

Offline Riven
Administrator

« JGO Overlord »


Medals: 1356
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Hand over your head.


« Reply #6 - Posted 2015-01-05 19:23:06 »

If your engine is used by other developers than those how build the engine, by developers who noticed your awesome games... then the people have spoken, and the engine will be moved back to WIP, or more likely: Showcase.

Off the top of my head, only LibGDX and jPCT would qualify at this time.

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Offline saucymeatman
« Reply #7 - Posted 2015-01-05 19:49:24 »

The Mercury Game Library shouldnt get archived.
It's hurting no-one, and helping many.
Offline Riven
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Medals: 1356
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Hand over your head.


« Reply #8 - Posted 2015-01-05 19:52:47 »

As said - if it attracts indie developers that actually produce games with it, it will be back in WIP or Showcase in no time. Seems like a fair deal to me. Once again: 'archive' is not the end of the world, it's just the name of a regular board, it's a label. The project is simply not in the spotlight anymore. Any game deserves the spotlight, engines have to earn it.

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Offline gouessej
« Reply #9 - Posted 2015-01-05 20:14:48 »

It's a fair deal to me, it's not definitive. I haven't created a separate thread for each engine I have resurrected (Java3D), created (the former TUER engine) and developed (JogAmp's Ardor3D Continuation), the same is true for the "tools" (JFPSM, JNDT, ...). I prefer consolidation over useless or at least debatable spreading out of resources (ie less engines but of better quality rather than more engines but of worse quality). The suggestion consisting in creating a sub-section "Community Tools" isn't bad on my view but anyway, Riven is flexible enough to move back an engine into the WIP section if it's worth it.

Julien Gouesse | Personal blog | Website | Jogamp
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Offline ags1

JGO Kernel


Medals: 367
Projects: 7


Make code not war!


« Reply #10 - Posted 2015-01-05 21:28:22 »

If your engine is used by other developers than those how build the engine, by developers who noticed your awesome games... then the people have spoken, and the engine will be moved back to WIP, or more likely: Showcase.

Off the top of my head, only LibGDX and jPCT would qualify at this time.

Ironically, I don't know of any threads for LibGDX or jPCT or jME.

Offline Elsealabs
« Reply #11 - Posted 2015-01-05 21:46:49 »

Somehow it seems wrong to allow random, non-contributing members, to drop their latest Android game in showcase just for advertising, and then disallow actual contributing members from sharing their code. Though I understand the reasoning behind the rule change, maybe there could be a sub-forum for people wanting to share what they are doing to learn? The community's criticism and feedback will help them learn.

Of course I'm new and my thoughts obviously don't weigh much, but I found it interesting to watch things like SHC's Silent Engine progress.

Offline KudoDEV

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« Reply #12 - Posted 2015-01-05 21:48:58 »

...disallow actual contributing members from sharing their code...

We can still share code. It's just not in the spotlight anymore.

Offline NegativeZero

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« Reply #13 - Posted 2015-01-05 21:59:19 »

Somehow it seems wrong to allow random, non-contributing members, to drop their latest Android game in showcase just for advertising

Off-topic, but can we do something about this? It's kinda annoying when these one off people drop and run.
Imho you should have to have X number of posts or rank Y to post a project, because JGO is a developer's forum, not a consumer's forum.
From what I can tell, nobody actually plays these spammy games, and generally games don't get commented on if they're not made by an active participant on the forums.

Offline lcass
« Reply #14 - Posted 2015-01-05 22:07:20 »

There is a point there a lot of people just plug android games but have little content on the forums when some people who work hard are pushed to the bottom of the list.
Offline kpars
« Reply #15 - Posted 2015-01-05 22:43:38 »

-snip-

This.

-snip-

Mercury isn't an engine, and it isn't 3D either. Comparing it to something like LibEcu is pointless, but I digress. Tongue



Regardless, as Riven mentioned in his earlier post, the only way to show if a tool is 'worthy' is to either make a kick-ass game with it or have someone else make a kick-ass game with it. If it isn't capable of doing either, it isn't 'worthy' by my terms.

The reality is that most of the actual indie developers out there are just going to end up rewriting half of your tools anyway. That's the biggest problem with game engines in general; they're too high level for development in any other genre than what they cater to. They usually require a lot of modification to work properly. Ever looked at Source? Developers have to hack up the hell out of it to get their games going.

- Jev
Offline wessles
« Reply #16 - Posted 2015-01-05 23:16:45 »

I agree with Riven here. If your tool doesn't have a kick-ass game made with it yet, it is not worthy of JGO's precious attention that could be spent on actual games. We already have a game or two currently in development and one already out because of this exact reason.

Although tossing them all in archived just for being in-dev is a bit harsh. I would highly appreciate a Community Tools board as well, Riven.

-wes
Offline pitbuller
« Reply #17 - Posted 2015-01-05 23:34:33 »

Forum should not be devblog for something that is never going to end up anywhere.
Offline Riven
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Medals: 1356
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Hand over your head.


« Reply #18 - Posted 2015-01-06 00:10:26 »

Just peek at:
   http://www.java-gaming.org/content/stats
and scroll down to 'releases'.

The light blue vertical bar in 2010 is when I took over JGO from ChrisM.

Since then, quite possibly due to a series of tiny changes, JGOs game output went from 8 games per month, to a little over 30 games per month. Most of these changes were an attempt to create a suitable eco system for indie developers. That mainly revolves around encouraging good behavior, but discouraging bad behavior is sometimes necessary, and unfortunately it's less subtle than positive reinforment. People are going to notice and push back. I'll take the feedback into consideration, and tweak the 'new rules' to make them a tad less crude, if you will.

In the end JGO is just a forum, with little to no moderation, so 'making you see the light' is mainly based on social cues. Kiss There will be differences of opinion, but we can work it out, as long as it means we continue nudging indie game developers into... developing games.

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Offline Elsealabs
« Reply #19 - Posted 2015-01-06 00:11:40 »

Forum should not be devblog for something that is never going to end up anywhere.

Then I must have mistaken the forum's purpose, and should probably go delete my WIP thread. I kind of feel embarrassed posting updates if the forum was meant for professional games that are going to "end up somewhere."

Offline Riven
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Hand over your head.


« Reply #20 - Posted 2015-01-06 00:15:26 »

@Elsealabs: indie games made mostly by hobbyists, not professional games. WIP games are encouraged, even if you don't mean to finish them. As long as it shows progress and can inspire others (to actually finish theirs). After a few projects you'll manage to finish a game, publish it, maybe even make a few bucks. Going through the entire process and making 'only' $10 by direct sales, is invaluable.

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Offline Jimmt
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« Reply #21 - Posted 2015-01-06 00:49:25 »

Forum should not be devblog for something that is never going to end up anywhere.

Then I must have mistaken the forum's purpose, and should probably go delete my WIP thread. I kind of feel embarrassed posting updates if the forum was meant for professional games that are going to "end up somewhere."
Remember that this thread is about game engines. Making multiple small WIP games is the path to successfully making bigger projects, but it's often different for game engines/libraries.
Offline Rayvolution

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« Reply #22 - Posted 2015-01-06 01:15:33 »

Although tossing them all in archived just for being in-dev is a bit harsh. I would highly appreciate a Community Tools board as well, Riven.

While I approve of getting libraries, engines and various tools absolutely no one would ever use out of WIP board and make way for JGO's main purpose; the games, I feel this might be a good middle ground. Maybe it could just be another small subforum? Breaking the "WIP games, tools & toy projects" forum into two, a "WIP Games & toy projects" and a "WIP tools" subforum under it.

That will keep them out of the games list, but also gives them a proper home. Being in archives puts the visitors under the impression the project is no longer maintained, and sadly, no matter how much the OP'er tries to ensure it is maintained still most people won't visit the forum in the first place to find out. For example, I've never visited archives. I don't even know whats there. Wink

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Offline lcass
« Reply #23 - Posted 2015-01-06 12:37:13 »

I will say one thing I've noticed about JGO is that everyone is helpful , always trying to help but they are also harsh. But not in a bad way , if you get something incredibly wrong and refuse to accept it then you are going to be treated harshly it's more helpful than being repeatedly told what to do because you don't learn then.
Offline SHC
« Reply #24 - Posted 2015-01-06 13:44:43 »

While I agree on the point that there is a need to encourage people on making games rather than engines, there is no point in moving all these engines and libraries into "Archived Projects". The name "Archived" in general sense, gives the meaning that they are in development once upon a time, not now, but that is not the case, we are actually working on them.

If you really want to move them from WIP, please make a separate child board, and name them "WIP Engines & Libraries" or something so, I really can't agree on the name "Archived".

Offline kevglass

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« Reply #25 - Posted 2015-01-06 13:45:47 »

While I think thats a good idea, I don't think anyone was actively looking for "agreement"

Cheers,

Kev

Offline MrPizzaCake

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« Reply #26 - Posted 2015-01-06 13:49:44 »

While I think thats a good idea, I don't think anyone was actively looking for "agreement"

Cheers,

Kev

Which isn't necessarily a good thing, especially when the "anyone" is a forum manager.

How am I? Tough question, since emotions are confusing as heck Tongue
Offline Riven
Administrator

« JGO Overlord »


Medals: 1356
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Exp: 16 years


Hand over your head.


« Reply #27 - Posted 2015-01-06 18:04:06 »

To those suggesting to use a board named 'WIP Tools', 'WIP Engines' or 'Community Tools', I'd like to stress that the effect of removing the aforementioned incentive would be greatly diminished. The board name has to have a negative connotation, just like with the Chitchat Monster board - people should have the feeling to steer clear of whatever slumbers in its depths.

'Archived Projects' is indeed a misnomer, and will be renamed to something better once inspiration strikes.

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Offline Gibbo3771

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Currently inactive on forums :(


« Reply #28 - Posted 2015-01-06 18:51:19 »

*snip all the sense *

This. Plus we have the issue of populating boards. That is why added new board is not the solution to organizational, where a simple rule works better until we have the need for a separate board.

Just look at the android board, it's kinda a grey area on the forum.

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Said no programmer ever
Offline kevglass

« JGO Spiffy Duke »


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Coder, Trainee Pixel Artist, Game Reviewer


« Reply #29 - Posted 2015-01-07 10:40:23 »

While I think thats a good idea, I don't think anyone was actively looking for "agreement"

Cheers,

Kev

Which isn't necessarily a good thing, especially when the "anyone" is a forum manager.

Better that the forum manager takes responsibility for keeping the forum - managed - than we have no decisions because a consensus will not be found.

Cheers,

Kev

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