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Article's up

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Ah, the article went up last night. Been a while since I read that [wink], which reminds me, I need to update the jsI website. I've been posting all my news here instead of on my site(s) which is a bit lazy, ah well. Thanks for all the feedback so far, you'd be amazed at how ropey the original version was until SiCrane prompted a rewrite or two. I have complete respect for the abilities of the GameDev editorial staff, giving their time and skills to allow authors to get their thoughts across as they intended. This site is a brilliant resource because of their efforts, IMHO.

Comments about attributes
One interesting comment to come up was that involving the ability to extend the aliens beyond the game. I'd been having similar thoughts recently and one of the basecodes I'm playing with features user attributes (taken from the Metaclass/Reflection reading I've been doing). Basically, the game classes themselves are metaclasses and the Xml is used to populate the attributes of the class. As a lot of the logic is scripted, it's fairly trivial to wire up the code to manipulate these attributes from the scripting VM. I think in the final of the articles I'll present such a system and leave it up for the user to decide on what to do with the game from there. By all accounts, the deliverable from the series won't be the full jsInvvaders game, it'll be a 'lite' version of it. Such concepts are also likely to be carried over to Manta-X at a later date as I'm drawing closer to implementing the scripting system.

GameMonkey Articles
I've also been busy with my GameMonkey articles, having put number 3 (or 4 if you count the intro) out the door. The next one will be a few examples of calling scripted functions from your native application and from there I can start moving into more advanced topics, such as binding C++ classes to the VM and overloading operators, etc. I'll also be finishing and releasing gmBind (formerly gmObjectT) and covering it's use in binding objects to script.

I'm going to see this movie tonight. To be honest, it looks pretty awesome. I've not seen a decent horror film in a while, this one looks so messed up that it could be either really good (in a Se7en style way) or really crap (in a typical Hollywood horror kinda way). Nice to see Danny Glover in a non-typecast role as a detective [rolleyes] However, it's a gore flick, so it'd be interesting to see the switch from Comedy to Horror.

How much blood would you shed to stay alive?
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Hey, evolutional...

I remember quite some time ago picking up GameMonkey and trying it out, but I ran into a number of problems getting it to build on Linux and ended up giving it up. IIRC, some of the problems involved improper capitalization of included filenames (UNIX being case sensitive with filenames, this was a problem).

I was just wondering if any of that has been fixed lately? One of the main draws for Lua is that it can easily be built for multiple platforms. GameMonkey didn't include a build path for *NIX or Mac, and IIRC it included .exe versions of Flex and Bison, and input files for those tools that contained syntax that my local copies of flex and bison could not parse. I remember posting on the GM forums about a Linux build, and receiving a reply that none of the developers used Linux and so a port would be unlikely. The reply indicated that the typical method for integrating GM with a project consisted of somehow compiling and linking any number of the 70 or so .h/.cpp files directly into your project, rather than linking to a pre-built library. It seemed kinda dodgy to me, or at least unorganized. Is that still the case?

Anyway, good job on the XML article. I'll be keeping an eye out for future installments. [cool]

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Yes, I think that is still the case with GM. I spoke to the one of the authors who hinted that they're planning a GM2 release at some point, so I'm keen to liase with them and put such suggestions in the mix. I've had problems building a static library myself, for some reason things seemed to break when using it. Problems were solved by including the 70 or so files in my project, so I agree that it's kind of messy. One of the plus points for LUA is that you have a DLL or a static lib and can just include 2 headers and use it off the bat.

Whilst there seems to be a fairly strong commercial base, I'd argue that people unfamiliar to scripting may be put off with the more complex build instructions than for example Lua. One of the reasons could be because it's C++ code and as such, tends to separate down more into multiple header files. With C, it's easier to concatonate your public interface into a single file and ship that with your library. Having said that, my SpiderMonkey (Mozilla javascript) distribution also seems to have the same header problems. I generally have to drop in 10 or so .h files to use the library making it not quite as easy to just drop it into a project.

It'd be nice to see it mature into a decent language though, the API is a lot friendlier than LUA for example, which is a bonus for people like me who get frustrated by such things.

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which is a bonus for people like me who get frustrated by such things

You and me both, my friend. [grin]

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