Well, its been a while since I updated this journal, or even spent any significant time on GDNet but I live and am still writing game stuff in my spare time.
The most recent push has been towards a 3D platform game. The image shows the current prototype in action.
I've managed to cobble together a working GJK implementation that has allowed me get developing an entirely custom character controller. This is a bloody tricky thing to get right without bugginess and is taking a lot of time to perfect. The existing implementation seems stable with the current level but still need to work on slope limits and steps.
I also have misgivings about replacing the capsule with a character model and fixing feet to the floor and so on, but at least I have a much better understanding of the maths involved than when I last attempted anything like this. Working from scratch rather than trying to modify an existing physics engine has been very rewarding.
I've also been playing around with rendering techniques. The shadows in the sample are done using stencil shadows, which I know is out of fashion right now but produces the kind of effect I'm looking for in this game. I'm using precomputed shadow volumes and a vertex shader to do the extrusion and seems to work well although the performance will suffer as I add more objects to the world, so the next major area to research is going to be culling that plays nice in a shadowed environment.
Its funny, you get to a point where you are achieving things and then have to start asking "So what is going to be different about this game". While it would be a great achievement to create a working 3D platform game, it needs something that hasn't been done to death a million times before for it to grow out of a hobby curiosity into an interesting game project and I don't have any answers to this yet.
Thanks for reading.