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New Etwork version

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hplus0603

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So I've spent the week-end releasing a bunch of code.

1) I released the updated version of kW X-port, my DirectX .X file exporter for 3ds Max. It's on SourceForge: http://kwxport.sourceforge.net/

2) I updated and released the Etwork networking library I'm also using for my project. It's on my home machine: http://www.mindcontrol.org/~hplus/etwork/

The property system's interaction with networking worked out pretty much the way I suggested it would, which is great! I have a "spawn" component that spawns a rock in the middle of nowhere, and the rock appears at the pre-set time in the pre-set place on the network client. Small steps, but cool!

Next, I'll look into actually making a player character. That'll be interesting, because I need to somehow take control of that object on the client side, and then somehow funnel the control input to the object on the server side. I have some ideas about how to do this, but they're not as elegant as the distributed property update system.

Last, I had a bug with Ogre3D where static mesh instances would not cast stencil shadows, whereas regular entity meshes would. That turned out to be a bug with 1.4.0rc1 which I was still using. An upgrade to 1.4.3 fixed that problem, but then added an assert that my meshes had a bad bounding box, generated by oFusion CE. The OgreMeshUpdate.exe program on the Ogre site didn't fix this problem, but the oFusion forum had an unofficial mesh update binary that did. The only problem now is that stencil shadows on a GeForce 7400 are... not fast.

But I already knew that from playing with C4 engine. I believe I'll just have to allow the player to choose between "no shadow," "simple shadow" (textures) and "exact shadow" (stencil).
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