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Member Since 04 Feb 2011
Offline Last Active Mar 11 2013 06:11 AM

Topics I've Started

Starting 3D Modeling - or sculpting? Advise please

14 February 2013 - 02:39 PM

I'm currently a student of computer science. While I see myself for as the programmer type, I wanted to have a deeper understanding on how to create 3d Models, textures and so on.
In the past I tried a couple of different technologies and mostly spend my time creating simple 2D games, but Unity3D got me interested. There are some nice tutorials out there but they all come with assets which I am not able to modify. So I really would like to create some basic stuff myself and just place it into Unity3D and interact with it in some way.
What I would like to do:
- Create a simple building to walk around in, maybe add a door which opens and closes. I figure once I manage to create a simple house it should be possible for me to create some larger level to walk around in. For Islands I can use the Unity build in tools, but in their current demo (this top down game) the main building is huge and seems to be one part build in some 3d Model tool.
- Create a simple animated character to be used in game. For the complexity level I think something like the Models from Final Fantasy VII on the Playstation one. Create basic animation and use it in Unity.
Now I looked around and obviously I came across Maya, 3DS Max and Blender. Since I am a Student I have equal access to all of them. I searched for some books / video tutorial and found some for Blender but they all lack something. Still I am unsure which software to use.
And then I found some Sculpture tools, like 3d Coat or even now from Autodesk 123D on the iPad. It seems that those tools are made to create characters and not objects like buildings and I can't animate them on the iPad but it could be a start, and then import the model into some other tool on the PC. But apparently sculpting needs more artistic experience then I expected (well last time I sculpted clay was in elementary school).
What do you suggest that I pick up? Is it even possible to get results in a short amount of time (like one month during term break), because some books start with the phrase, something like: " I spend the last 5 years learning Blender and I still don't know everything but enough to write a beginners book..."
thanks in advance for your input

Book recommendation for C++ wanted

23 August 2012 - 08:46 AM


I'm going on holiday in a couple of days and still need some books to take with me. I've spend the last couple of years writing in Objective-C and C# but haven't touched C++ for like 10 years and I want to spend some time learning it again. The last time I read some books which covered only basic C++ and Directx 7/8. So I'm looking for a book which helps me get to learn the language very quickly and I'm proficient in OO (Java as well).

I know there are online ressources available, but I probably won't have internet access during the holidays, so a book would be the best.

Are there any recommendations? Maybe also coupled with Directx or general game development. I'm afraid that a beginners book which covers things like types and so on will be too boring for me, whereas an advanced book might be too complex since I need to get to learn the syntax first again.

I have a Mac with Xcode and Windows VM for Visual Studio with me during the trip, so I should be covered on the IDE side.

Thanks in advance for your help.

Having trouble getting XNA 3.1 code to run with 4.0?

14 February 2011 - 09:04 AM

This will probably come in handy if you get weird compiler errors and you are not used to the MSDN Library:


2.5D side-scroller - where to look for Information?

08 February 2011 - 02:19 AM


I was wondering on how to create a 2.5D side-scroller like Castle Crashers or the Double Dragon series. I already got a good book on general 2d side-scrolling action using XNA. Now my naive approach would be to allow the character to go up and then scale him down a bit to give the impression that he is moving closer to the background. This would save me from having a real 3d coordinate system since I can still store the characters position in a vector2.

the only problem I don't know how to solve, is the collision detection. This implementation where the character can only move from left to right uses a ledge system. Basically you draw ground collision as seen on the image. Now this works great, but it would not allow for my approach where the characters Y-position is changed when moving closer to the background.

I couldn't find any information about this stuff on the internet nor could I find books that cover this topic. So can someone please point me in the right direction?

Animated Characters - use Sprite Sheet or Frame Animation?

07 February 2011 - 03:34 AM

Hi all,

I did read some books about XNA Game Programming and most books used a Spritesheet to animate characters. But there is one book from James Silva which is called "Building XNA 2. 0 Games A Practical Guide for Independent Game Development" and he uses a different technique to create and draw his characters. He splits up the characters in different parts (see attachment for example) and then using an editor you place the character back together and animate every frame of every animation yourself.

Apparently this give the following advantages:
- Sound files can be played frame accurately
- Allows for easier transition between animations (imagine switching from a jump to a hit animation)

Still I don't really see why that shouldn't be possible with Spritesheets? To me it seems that almost all 2D games use spritesheets, at least 99% of the books tell me so. So in reality what is the better option? What do current games use - and I mean 2D games like for example Marvel vs. Capcom or Castle Crashers uses some highly detailed sprites. Do you think it's a spritesheet or an animated character similar to James Silva's approach or maybe even something totally different?

I would really like to know the Pro's and Con's of both techniques and what is commonly used nowadays in 2D games on Xbox Arcade or iOS.