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Norman Barrows

Member Since 04 Apr 2012
Offline Last Active Today, 10:13 AM

#5296131 Need help on what to do with my idea

Posted by on 11 June 2016 - 03:56 PM

>> What engine to use?


depends on the game type.


>> 2D or 3D?


your choice.   how much do you know already?   text? 2D? 3D?    how much more do you want to have to learn?    how long do you want it all to take?


>> And should it be an RPG game?


text or graphical adventure would probably be the best choice for a story heavy game (IE where its primarily about the story).    a storyline based shooter would be the next step up, followed by a storyline based rpg, and then perhaps a storyline driven simulator / simulation, depending on game setting and game depth.   graphical adventures, shooters, RPGs, and sims could be 2D or 3D.    shooters, rpgs, and sims, (and maybe the others too!) could be real time or turn based combat.

#5296115 Component based architecture .... for game!

Posted by on 11 June 2016 - 01:07 PM

>> I have faced some difficulty when tried create some relation Ex. Bullet-Component rotating around Rocket-Component.


precisely, what are you trying to do?



>>  Component based architecture


ECS (as opposed to somewhat more straightforward composition) has a number of uses:


1. team members without the access and/or knowledge to modify the code base must be able to define new entity types from pre-defined components already existing in the game engine. test question: do team members who must define entity types not have code access and / or knowledge?


2. to reduce build times by making entity type definitions data driven, so you don't have to recompile when you define a new entity. test question: how often do you define a new entity type?


3. there's a method for optimizing update once you can squeeze no more clock cycles out of render and you're still too slow. the result is more or less an ECS. test question: have you already optimized render, and you're still too slow?


4. just for fun or as a learning exerience. test question: are you doing this just for fun, or just as a learning experience?


if you pass any of these test questions, ECS may be called for.


note that generic game engines like Unity et al have requirement #1. I suppose that's why some folks thinks an ECS is "de rigueur".

#5295991 are vidgames disrespectful of player's time vs tabletop RPG's?

Posted by on 10 June 2016 - 11:01 AM

>> Many of us don't want the sort of streamlined experience you're talking about. If I'm deep in the dungeon then being able to find my way out safely is part of gameplay.


most games have automap and a compass with the next quest waypoint always showing the exit, so no "finding your way out"


most games have hard coded spawn points that don't respawn for a while or at all, and do not have periodic random encounters, so "safely" is a given.


>>  I might have to make a difficult decision between pressing on or turning back


you've already decided to turn back, cause you're mining the dungeon for loot, and you've reached max encumbrance - time to go to the store and sell it all off.


>>  and maybe between ditching some loot in order to be able to continue


you've already passed that point. you dumped the junk and kept the good stuff. its time to leave. but you're half way through the second or third level. going forward, you just have to kill more stuff, loot the bodies, and immediately drop everything. you can't just smash and grab and go. one soul gem fragment and your over encumbered. so now you kill, loot, drop - paying attention to what will be easy to find later (big stuff like armor), and what won't fall thru the ground mesh due to whacked physics (hmm... maybe dropping armor in oblivion's not such a good idea...., or purified water in the lobby of the 38 casino in new vegas.  it respawns at the door, rolls, then falls thru, again an again).


while soldiering on, or dropping all loot then continuing is one strategy, you're still left having to come back later and walk to pick it up again. plus more time futzing with inventories.  time and motion studies:   the most time efficient way to get loot to the store is to kill, loot, then leave, do not drop at any time anywhere. you just waste more time in inventory menus. and extra travel. and more load screens!


>> Same with exploring - if I wanted discrete encounters I'd play a game with a world-map mode rather than a continuous world. I enjoy scanning the horizon to see where to go next, climbing the hillsides to get a better view, feeling more immersed because it takes time to get from one place to another.


i can get into that too. but i come from the flight simulator demographic. sometimes you just want to accelerate time and get to the action. games have this capability, but don't typically let the user use it, or limit how much you can accelerate the game to the point its little better than real time.


there are times i want to explore, and times i just want to finish some quest. when i want to finish a quest, i should be able to call up the game map, click on my destination, and it will move me towards it (via fast travel) until i encounter something (IE come within X of an un-triggered spawn point, or undiscovered landmark). at that point it should stop fast travel, and let me deal with the encounter. then i can click on the map again and continue my journey. that would be so easy to do, and then you would not have to manually a walk to undiscovered locations when you didn't want to. and when you felt like exploring, you could. Caveman does this.

#5295990 are vidgames disrespectful of player's time vs tabletop RPG's?

Posted by on 10 June 2016 - 10:32 AM

I am going to guess that you aren't a big fan of "walking simulators," either...


how did you know? <g>

#5295985 what was the first video game?

Posted by on 10 June 2016 - 10:13 AM

>> the cathode ray tube amusement device (patented in 1947) 




give that man a cigar! we have a winner!


never even heard of that one!

#5295982 responsiveness of main game loop designs

Posted by on 10 June 2016 - 10:04 AM

>> I gave you two examples of where other orders are used to decrease input latency.


yes, i guess that one long poll and long update vs many short polls and updates would count as a different order. i tend to think of it as analogous to "stepped movement for missiles", IE many short updates instead of one long one, but since its both polling and updating it is technically a different ordering.


thanks to everyone for the answers!

#5295832 what was the first video game?

Posted by on 09 June 2016 - 12:12 PM

for 1st commercial game, i'd imagine it was an arcade cabinet machine. but what was the first one to show up at the arcades alongside pinball machines?


i know night bomber was pretty early on. and it was electro-mechanical, not video.



for non-commercial, didn't the guy who invented the mouse do some stuff like pong?

#5295829 are vidgames disrespectful of player's time vs tabletop RPG's?

Posted by on 09 June 2016 - 11:34 AM

i've recently been noticing ways that video games, such as RPGs and shooters can be disrespectful of the player's time when compared to tabletop RPGs.


a quick example: leaving the dungeon cause you can't carry any more loot.....


skyrim: manually walk all the way back using continuous move. you can use console cheats to accelerate time. 


classic D&D:

players: "we leave the dungeon"

ref: "ok..."  (does some random encounter checks), "you've left the dungeon. now what do you do?"


in skyrim, there are no periodic random encounters, so where's my "leave the dungeon" button?  i mean WTF? has nobody ever thought of this?


and exploring...



continuous move, jog or ride a slow horse across the world in real time - and wait until you run into something.


classic D&D:

players: we go west

ref: "ok..."  (does random encounter check)  "you travel one days journey west and see nothing of interest. cross off a day of food. now what do you do?" and just like that you've traversed a distance the equivalent of crossing skyrim 4 times in less time than it takes to jog 100 yards in skyrim. 


would we be so enamored of realtime exploration on foot or horseback if it was all greyscale shaded and cubes? 


the next time you  play a game, picture it in greyscale and cubes, except for glowing green cubes for the things you can interact with in the world. this is what the game looks like from a gameplay point of view - which is usually much less than what you see drawn on the screen.


i suspect that games should really be build that way first, to ensure the fun. then you can put a pretty paint job on them.

#5295790 Parkour Game

Posted by on 09 June 2016 - 08:33 AM

>> Super Jump Pads (Basically a pad that launches you in the air.)


Gian-Reto's got you covered there, just add some extra y velocity to the jump.


>> Some sort of support for scenes to be added by other users (A way for you to launch downloaded scenes)


its unity, just let them load their own levels.


>> Properly licensed Adobe Creative Cloud


photoshop looks to be the only truly useful tool there. photoshop's a no-brainer. the rest you can probably live without.

#5295784 Scale entity dynamically

Posted by on 09 June 2016 - 08:12 AM

sx = desired width / texture width


sy = desired height / texture height


remember that blits are based on the center, not the upper left corner. you'll have to adjust accordingly.


so if the screen is 1020 pixels wide, and you want 8 bricks across the screen, that's 1020/8=127.5 pixels wide for each brick.


if your brick texture is 256x256 pixels in size, your sx = 127.5/256 = 0.498046875.


checking your math...


a 256 pixel wide texture scaled by 0.498046875 would be 256*0.498046875= 127.5 pixels wide (correct).


8 bricks at 127.5 pixels each = 8*127.5 = 1020 pixels (correct).


note that you can't blit at x=127.5, only at x=127 or x=128. so you may have a bit of overlap or a gap at the right edge depending on how you handle rounding off the x coordinate for the blit. probably better to use an integral size for "brick width in pixels".

#5295771 Feedback on HeliHavoc

Posted by on 09 June 2016 - 06:29 AM

downloading now.


first thing that jumps out at me is model and ground quality. your sky is looking AAA. the rest - far from it.


if you think about it, all 3d games are the same, the only difference is the quality of the meshes, textures, and special effects.


and out of those, i think i'd have to say that textures probably make the most difference. after that, maybe lighting?


ok, checking it out....


sidescrolller - like a slow version of defender (1981) with no bad guys and no guns, and a very fragile ship.




no ESC for ingame menu to quit!


no textures at all!


seems the only game mechanic is flying - not enough for the player to do - not enough for them to master. i figured out how to fly the thing on the third try, then is just a matter of having patience. if you'd told me what keys did what, i would have only crashed once. and if i had an altimeter with rate of climb (like a real chopper) i wouldn't have crashed at all.


it might help if you said W/S/up/down  was ascend / descend. i assumed it was forward / back and i had 6 degrees of translational freedom - not just 4.  otherwise i would have probably only crashed once, to learn how softly you had to land.  


altimeter with rate of climb / descent is called for.   a chopper pilot should not have to guess how quickly they are descending and if its outside the safe operational envelope of the vehicle.  of course, that's about the only challenge in the game to begin with. so you add that and then you have a 2d chopper flight sim with a difficult camera angle, no gauges, and basic graphics. and all you can do is fly around. doesn't sound like much fun to me.


the plane should not move left or right if they are on the ground. at first it seemed i had 4 degrees of translational freedom (fwd, back, left, right), and the chopper would climb automatically.


much probably has to do with the fact that you're using a true 3d engine to do a 2d side scroller. if i see something that looks like a flight sim, i expect it to act like a flight sim, not mario.


in general, non-chase-cam 3rd person views of flying vehicles are difficult to use.   with Zaxxon (1982) being one of the first examples of such games.


"those who do not learn from the past are doomed to repeat it"





so what you have is a slow version of the movement mechanics of a 35 year old game (but no badguys, combat, weapons, or shields) , and the difficult camera angles of a 34 year old game, and the graphics of a <how ever many> years old game.  Zaxxon is 34 years old and is gourard and phong shaded 3d polys, so <whatever> is at least 34 years maybe more. OTOH, i think the original arcade version was monochrome, and only later ports had color.


FYI, in defender you had to fight the badguys WHILE picking up people!


right now, what you've got now isn't even SIMCopter (Maxis 1996), which wasn't all that.  but you might want to take a look at it for ideas for additional types of non-combat game play. its a police chopper sim, and expands on the basic pickup / drop stuff without adding weapons (near as i can tell).





to improve the havok chopper title, i would switch to payer's choice of chasecam or "from the driver's seat" view, adjust the flight model and input controlls accordingly,  kick it up to 6 degrees of translational freedom, and at least one degree of rotational freedom (rotate left/right). add textures, add basic gauges (speed, alt, rate of climb), and add greater challenge - combat or time limited missions are about the only options there. and flying a chopper to "beat the clock" doesn't sound that exciting compared to weapons and combat - especially when you could have combat AND beat the clock AND pickup stuff at the same time. now THAT's a challenge! of course, if you follow that to is logical conclusion you end up making the spiritual successor to the game series Comanche by NovaLogic (1992) - best known for its groundbreaking use of a voxel terrain engine, and its realistic chopper flight model - still considered one of the best ever in the industry.





nowadays, you want to impress people, you gotta think big dude.





#5295765 What to do with extra ideas?

Posted by on 09 June 2016 - 06:12 AM

>> Should those ideas just be forgotten, should they be translated/ simplified into something smaller and more manageable?


they should be added to your list of "possible solutions i'm aware of".


but do not pursue them until:

1. you need them for a game. then learn how to implement them.


2. you have nothing better to do than learn how to implement them (rather unlikely - there's always something else to learn in game development).




for actual ideas for a type of game, as tom sloper and sun and shadow are referring to, i jot down the game idea on a piece of notebook paper, and toss it in a manila folder with the other 50 or so game ideas i have on file.    


but usually, if its a good idea, i'll think about it from time to time for 2-4 weeks, maybe make a few notes and do a little research, then stop my current project for up to a week and do a rapid prototype. it never even makes it into the game ideas file. 


so much to build! so little time!

#5295763 What licence allows for artists to transfer their IP to me?

Posted by on 09 June 2016 - 06:06 AM

>> I hope this would be enough, until I form a real company and get signed contracts from them.




odds are you'll need a lawyer and a contract for them to sign before they even turn on their PCs start working.   or you could be hating life later.


one alternative is a network of sole proprietorships.  every team member is a separate business.  when an artist delivers an asset, they sell it to you outright. you pay them, or owe them money. and now its your bitmap, not theirs.  no contracts. just simple bills of sale and possibly IOU notes. if you want to pay in royalty percentages, or "shares", you'll probably need a contract. but for simple cash and carry transactions between two individuals, a bill of sale is sufficient, just like buying a used car directly from the private owner.

#5295705 creating good quests for games

Posted by on 08 June 2016 - 06:47 PM

i'm currently working on the quest generators for my Caveman FPSRPG project.


I've spent a couple of days checking out the info available online about writing quests for games.


i'm not talking about the backstory for a quest.


about the only info i've found of use is that you should define a final goal and simply check for possible success and failure conditions and that's it.  the player should be able to meet the success or failure conditions by any means of their choosing which is supported by the game engine.


to provide more ways a player can complete a quest, goals should be stated in the most generic terms, as in "stop the wolves from attacking the flock" which includes possibilities like fences, running them off, finding them another food source, casting a sleep spell and relocating them, etc. vs "kill the wolves attacking the flock", which leaves zero player choice when it comes to ways to complete the quest successfully.


beyond that, the goal should probably be "epic" - making the quest an "adventure", as opposed to a trivial or mundane goal, which makes the quest a mere "task".


everything else seems to be related to writing backstory or "color text".  with nothing much on making quests with good gameplay as opposed to making quests with good backstory.


anyone have any other suggestions besides:

1. having just a generic final goal


2. making it an epic goal



#5295603 Need some advice or direction on a Mod friendly data structure.

Posted by on 08 June 2016 - 06:18 AM

while not directly related to data structures used, one thing i've noticed is it seems the lack of UUIDs can cause conflicts between different mods.


i suspect bethesda designed the engine to be moddable from the get go - to the point that the game itself is simply a very big mod. as are each of the expansions. its sort of data driven design taken to the extreme.  with a generic highly data driven engine, modding is easy as the whole thing is driven by "mods".