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We have 4 x Pro Licences (valued at $59 each) for 2d modular animation software Spriter to give away in this Thursday's GDNet Direct email newsletter.

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Trapper Zoid

Member Since 20 May 2005
Offline Last Active Oct 08 2013 10:18 PM

Posts I've Made

In Topic: Expected maximum texture size

09 August 2013 - 03:46 AM

Thanks to both of you for your replies, that's just what I needed - a sanity check for myself that expecting 2048x2048 texture support is a reasonable requirement.

In Topic: "Macs are better for artists"

21 August 2012 - 06:34 PM

(2) Macs are similar to Linux with their console-y ways. Some programmers prefer this. It also comes with a great dev environment (XCode), but so does Windows.

This is the main reason why I use a Mac for my main work computer. It's my favourite OS for getting stuff done, it runs all the programming and graphics tools I need, and it has Unix under the hood.

In Topic: "Generated" Storyline - theoretical

10 August 2012 - 10:14 PM

Something like this was my dream goal back when I first joined GameDev.net, and I'd like to do something with it again some day. I made a monster post sometime in the first year I was here listing all the research I had done on the topic. It's several years out of date now but might be worth digging up.
Edit:Ths appears to be it: http://www.gamedev.n...-plot-in-games/
Unfortunately the move to the new forum format appears to have really screwed up the formatting in my first post.

From what I remember, nearly every attempt combines the sorts of approaches that I think from your post you've probably considered:
  • represent characters with a bunch of attibute labels and characteristic variables which determines which actions they take from the set provided from them (i.e. Bob is a Knight, aggresiveness = 60%, chivalry = 70%, etc.)
  • logic-based planning towards goals for the set of actions available (wants to achieve goal X, so find a chain of A -> B -> ... -> X that meets that goal). This can be done on the character level (Bob wants goal X) or the meta-story level (story needs a dramatic pinch point at the 2/3 mark)
  • template based story patterns along the line of (hopefully more sensible) Mad Libs: (<ANTAGONIST> takes <VALUED ITEM/PERSON> from <PROTAGONIST> leading to recovery/rescue attempt).
The problem with all of these is that they all tend to result in very mechanical and formulaic story events that are obviously machine generated. It takes a lot of care and clever artistry to pick exactly the right attributes, symbols, rules and templates to work for each story. I don't think there isn't going to be a universal approach - every designer will need to handcraft their own based on what type of game and stories they want to tell.

But it's certainly achievable. I don't see any reason why you couldn't, for example, build a RTS or flight/space sim that builds the next mission from templates using the variables from the end state of the previous mission, building to a campaign arc shaped on the actions of the player. An RPG is slightly more complex in my mind, but could still be roughly equivalent.

In Topic: Chris Crawford kickstarts something else

08 August 2012 - 12:03 AM

Wow, it's a Kickstarter straight out of the 80s. I'm slightly disappointed Chris Crawford was in front of a giant LCD screen instead of something like an Apple II.

I'm not sure what I think. Mostly I'm confused as to why he's aiming for $150K.

In Topic: General vibe of using SDL 1.3?

30 October 2011 - 02:56 AM

SDL 1.3 has been in beta for years, so I'm wondering if that's due to slow development or whether they want to be really, really sure they've squashed all the bugs. I'm probably not going to be doing anything too far from the norm with my use of SDL so as long as 1.3 has a decent rep for cross-platform then it's fine. As rusty as I currenty am though I'm out of the loop on whether everyone has made the shift to SDL 1.3 or whether SDL 1.2 is where it's at for compatibility's sake.

The hardware acceleration for 2D graphics is nice. I used OpenGL with SDL 1.2 for accelerated textured for 2D sprites, but if 1.3 handles that for me I'll shift to using that.