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Member Since 10 Nov 2006
Online Last Active Today, 03:07 PM

Topics I've Started

What would the process look like if you approach making a boardgame like making a video...

27 February 2015 - 03:25 AM

Please, this is a tongue-in-cheek thread wink.png , so take it easy.

Considering this thread , I found the question


If you were making a board game, what would be your process?


 quite interesting. So, here comes the tongue-in-cheek question:


 What would the process look like if you approach making a boardgame like making a video game ?
 Here are my approaches tongue.png :

  1. Ask people if they would help out to model and paint all the kick-ass, super-duper miniatures you have in mind.
  2. Ensure that everyone willing to help you for free knows your vision and that it is undisered to deviate from your vision.
  3. Create a plan to manage all the people in a football stadium, providing enough tables, screens, chairs, beer etc. for the initial release party.
  4. Tell everyone that the budget for the initial release party is secured and that you can even double it by lending an other 50 bucks from your grandma.
  5. Ask around of how to best include elements from LARPs, sports games, table tops, pen'n'paper, trading card games to make it the best game ever, because more is always better.
  6. Tell everyone, that your board game will kick-ass due to its supreme realistic miniatures and that old games just sucks, like chess because of their sucking retro miniature design.
  7. Tell everyone, that you can't design any miniature or paint or write any rules down, but ensure that you have played lot of board games, knowing every single failure they made.
  8. Tell everyone interested, that you have all your rules and game design written down on the backside of an shopping list and that your game is already in development since last weekend and that you plan to release the first playable prototype at the end of the month.

How to limit your FPS ?

20 February 2015 - 01:30 AM

In the thread What's a good general max fps for a 3d graphics engine ? Olof suggested to limit the fps. Well, what are good ways to limit it ?


For one v-sync is an option, but many people want to disable v-sync, therefor what other methods would work ?


I could use sleep to wait the rest of a predefiend frame time, but sleep has a fix , quite large wake interval (15ms in windows ?). If I want to limit the FPS to lets say 100 , then each frame would needs to sleep for ~1-9 ms. You could reduce the sleep interval, but is this the best practise ?

Particle and Mipmapping

11 February 2015 - 01:08 AM

I've some issues with my particle system. When the rendered particles get quite small (only a few pixel), then they loose their form (circle->square) and at a certain threshold start to blink while moving. I think, that it is a matter of the small size and mipmapping and I'm unsure to which way to improve the quality. Turn off mipmapping ? Turn off mipmapping at a certain level ? Create all mipmaps by hand ? Have a minimum on screen size ?


The particles I'm talking about are normal mapped particles rendered to the g-buffer.


Any thoughts and tips are appreciated smile.png


Edit: Forgot to mention, that the particles are impostors, not alpha blended.

Filling in the gap: What to do while waiting on the game to finish an action ?

06 February 2015 - 02:40 AM

Well, when you have a RTS/strategy/sim game, sometimes you have breaks, especially if you need to build up your base:
You don't have enough resources to build new stuff, the ordered stuff is still under constructed, no enemy attacks and you don't have enough power to attack the enemy either.

What do you do in the meantime ?

There's just one important resource left, the time the player could use to do something meaningful. So , what ways exist to put the player time
to some use. It should be important, that the action should be optional and not mandatory to progress in the game.

A pretty cool example is dungeon keeper 1/2, where the game entities interact with the world on their own, but
the player has the option to speed it up by placing creature at certain places (e.g. start training now) or to slap them as
temporary speed boost.

Are there other examples to fill in the gaps ?

As player, how to you handle such a situation ? Just wait, check some reports, watch TV, or get mad at the game ?

GUI: immediate mode to buffer based

01 December 2014 - 04:43 AM

My engine is still based on OpenGL 2.1 and I would like to migrate it to a higher OGL version in the (far) future. To prepare the engine and optimize it by the way, I would like to get rid of the (deprecated) immediate mode GUI. Nevertheless, I would like to keep most of my GUI framework and features, which are
- all gui elements (including text letters) are quads,
- all gui elements could have a shader,
- all gui elements could have a texture (already on a handful of atlases),
- gui is redrawn each frame,
- gui is drawn in strict order (lot of alpha blending).

Thought, I'm not able to use OGL >2.1 yet, I would like to use an architecture which comes close to Ogl4, that is, I plan to make it completely buffered based (vertex buffers for now). The rest should try to mimic new features (shader buffers, bindless etc.) to make a later migration easier.

My basic idea is
1. map a vertex buffer object (double buffered)
2. while drawing the widgets, fill up the vertex buffer object
3. fill an additional buffer with meta information about shader,texture
4. unmap the buffer
5. bind the buffer
6. draw quad from the buffer in order,switch texture/shader if necessary, try to batch as much quads as possible by grouping them by  texture/shader

Well, this could result in lot of texture/shader switches and draw calls. I'm now looking for hints/ideas to optimize it.
These ideas are coming to mind:

I. Assign a layer to each quad, quads on the same layer can be rendered out of order.
II. Use a texture array (same texture size required, utilize atlases) and use an index (3rd tex-coord) into the texture layer, avoiding texture switches.
III. Group multiple shaders into a less uber-shaders.
IV. Sort quads by layer and shader.

I would like to hear some comment and critics on my idea ? Is this the wrong way to approach the next generation of APIs (Mantel/OpenGL Next) ?

Are there other known, (good) working alternatives ?