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      Download the Game Design and Indie Game Marketing Freebook   07/19/17

      GameDev.net and CRC Press have teamed up to bring a free ebook of content curated from top titles published by CRC Press. The freebook, Practices of Game Design & Indie Game Marketing, includes chapters from The Art of Game Design: A Book of Lenses, A Practical Guide to Indie Game Marketing, and An Architectural Approach to Level Design. The GameDev.net FreeBook is relevant to game designers, developers, and those interested in learning more about the challenges in game development. We know game development can be a tough discipline and business, so we picked several chapters from CRC Press titles that we thought would be of interest to you, the GameDev.net audience, in your journey to design, develop, and market your next game. The free ebook is available through CRC Press by clicking here. The Curated Books The Art of Game Design: A Book of Lenses, Second Edition, by Jesse Schell Presents 100+ sets of questions, or different lenses, for viewing a game’s design, encompassing diverse fields such as psychology, architecture, music, film, software engineering, theme park design, mathematics, anthropology, and more. Written by one of the world's top game designers, this book describes the deepest and most fundamental principles of game design, demonstrating how tactics used in board, card, and athletic games also work in video games. It provides practical instruction on creating world-class games that will be played again and again. View it here. A Practical Guide to Indie Game Marketing, by Joel Dreskin Marketing is an essential but too frequently overlooked or minimized component of the release plan for indie games. A Practical Guide to Indie Game Marketing provides you with the tools needed to build visibility and sell your indie games. With special focus on those developers with small budgets and limited staff and resources, this book is packed with tangible recommendations and techniques that you can put to use immediately. As a seasoned professional of the indie game arena, author Joel Dreskin gives you insight into practical, real-world experiences of marketing numerous successful games and also provides stories of the failures. View it here. An Architectural Approach to Level Design This is one of the first books to integrate architectural and spatial design theory with the field of level design. The book presents architectural techniques and theories for level designers to use in their own work. It connects architecture and level design in different ways that address the practical elements of how designers construct space and the experiential elements of how and why humans interact with this space. Throughout the text, readers learn skills for spatial layout, evoking emotion through gamespaces, and creating better levels through architectural theory. View it here. Learn more and download the ebook by clicking here. Did you know? GameDev.net and CRC Press also recently teamed up to bring GDNet+ Members up to a 20% discount on all CRC Press books. Learn more about this and other benefits here.
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Release 14 imminent...

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ApochPiQ

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So I've been looking over my past notes and decided that I'm pretty happy with the state of affairs over in Epoch land. The garbage collector is running, tuned for reasonable performance, and successfully keeps the native-code realtime raytracer clamped at a decently small degree of RAM usage.

The only thing that really bugs me is that the GC has imposed a serious performance hit on the raytracer - to the tune of halving its old performance. I still need to do a full release build of the runtime to make sure I can't improve on that any, but I suspect the GC root spilling in LLVM is taking a toll on optimization passes. I might need to work on improving the front-end of the compiler to generate more optimal code in the first place so that I don't have to spill so many registers onto the stack all the time.

It'll take some analysis and study of the emitted machine code, but I'm optimistic about being able to reclaim at least some of the performance.

If nothing else, this is a good motivation for introducing a "manually reclaimed" semantic to object allocations in Epoch, so programs that don't want to incur GC overhead can bypass it entirely.



[As I wrote this, I kept alt-tabbing over to Visual Studio and mucking around. I managed to suppress garbage collection invocation for a large percentage of functions, which got me back to 21FPS - compared to 24FPS previously. I'm happy.]

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Why do you have to spill the registers at all? Can't you keep track of which ones have references in them?

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LLVM doesn't support tracing GC roots in registers at this point. It's a nasty limitation but the perf impact isn't that terrible if you're careful about emitting good code from the front-end.
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