Friday, May 27, 2011

Not a changelog

No updates last week or this? Whats the matter, getting lazy?

Well, not lazy, but having different priorities. On the weekend two weeks ago i sat down with a friend, who is a concept artist, and knows a fair deal about game design, to discuss some game concept issues. The outcome was, that i had to get rid of my current concept, as is, for several reasons. One being over-ambitious (as always), and another one being the heavy competition in that genre.

So i sat down for a few days and thought about what i can come up with for an entertaining concept, and i think i got a pretty decent idea. There is not a lot of details worked out yet, but i could imagine it being quite fun to play.

Another thing that happened was Terraria. It is a cute little 8bit inspired platform game that takes off where minecraft is stuck currently.
In my experience, Minecraft was a fun game, but it was very very repetitive. Exploration was interesting, until you've seen any biome, or gathered each resource. Caves were all grey in grey, leaving you with an eyesore after a while, and all you got from it was a handful of diamonds to build another pick that would enable you to explore(or dig) even more caves. I really enjoyed playing it, but it got so boring that eventually i don't even consider playing it at this point.
This is where Terraria comes in. Despite it being in 2d, it adds a lot of depths to the gameplay. There is more exploring, less mindless digging, better rewards, more enemies, more ways to navigate through the map. And frigging bosses.
To be fair, after i found most of the items, and crafted the stuff i was interested in trying out, i put the game aside, but it still has some potential to replay. I think, i will wait for some updates, and try me some multiplayer.

Oh yeah, also we decided to make another demo for the evoke 2011 demo party in cologne, germany in mid August. So that's what i am actually working on currently. Can't show anything yet, because secret! You'll have to be patient and watch it on the bigscreen on the party, or afterwards on pouet. That means i can test the engine a little further, but i won't have as much time to work on a game concept, or prototype. I have to see how i will arrange my priorities, or rather see, how well we'll progress with the demo, and adjust the schedule accordingly.

Friday, May 13, 2011

Changelog 003

I mostly finished the work necessary for porting to OpenGL >3.
The model class got rewritten to use VBO's instead of immediate mode, and the imported collada vertices were changed to fit into the VBO's vertex structure. In retrospect, it was a straight forward process, even though there were some minor hiccups. There is still much to do, converting the actual existing code that is still using deprecated functions, but the worst part is done.

After mog mentioned he wants to code a 2d rotating ribbon effect, i thought about how i would realise it and today i was playing around with the shader realtime editor and built that oldschool 2d ribbon/twister effect, which is common in older demos.

I ended up playing around with the same code in the shadertoy and it ended up in a textured more dynamically moving twister thing (paste to the default Deform shader code and hit the compile button (or Alt-Enter)). You might need to manually enable WebGL in your FireFox about:config or use Chrome.

Friday, May 6, 2011

Changelog 002

This week i started out improving the shader editor, so it becomes actually useful. It still lacks some kind of selection of what shader currently is being edited, but i added some visual enhancements like fading the top and bottom code lines, adding a line counter, and error handling and parsing the errorlog to highlight the lines which makes the compilation fail.

Failed compilation with highlight on the errornous code line
Further i added tangent calculation from the texture coordinates for normal mapping and texture mapping on the sphere primitive.

Is this normal?!

Once upon a time in a galaxy far far away
In case you're wondering, theres a julia fractal being animated in the corners.

The rest of the week i was trying to port the engine to the OpenGL 3.3 core specs which includes uploading the modelview and projection matrices, and the actual vertex data to the shader, and stop using immediate mode ( i will miss it! ) for the sake of using Vertex Buffer Objects.

So hopefully i will be done porting most of the code by next week so i can focus on the fun stuff again.