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      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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Progress Report

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Still making progress at a reasonable rate. I've added facility in the editor to autocreate texture coordinates on the collision shapes and set up the game so that it can load textures and meshes from the level file in an arbitrary way. The actual level being rendered now is a mesh premade in the editor rather than shapes created on the fly from the collision shapes.

I've got the basics of a state machine set up for the player character now. He can run, walk, turn and stand idle now, and it is all structured into separate state classes that are managed by a PcStateMachine class owned by the PC entity instance. It works using a callback system from the animation controller.

This is basically set up so that in Charm, my model editor, I can tag keyframes in the animations with arbitrary data that is exported along with the rest of the model data. The events are shown as the little diamonds on the trackbar below.


In the game, when the animation controller's update() method is called, you pass in a callback which is invoked whenever the animation passes a tagged keyframe, similar to how the ID3DXAnimationController thing works, although mine is all hand-rolled.

The walk and run states for example lock so that you can't change state except during these events. I then tag each frame in those animations when the feet are both on the floor and legs together, so that now the character takes a minimum of a single step if you just tap the keys, which looks much better.#include "RunState.h"#include "entities/pc/PcData.h"#include "entities/pc/PcStateMachine.h"#include "maths/Quaternion.h"WalkState::WalkState(PcData &data, PcStateMachine &stateMachine) : PcState(data, stateMachine){}void WalkState::begin(PcState::Type previous){ data.ac.transitionTo(data.ids.walk, previous == PcState::Run); iv = getInputVelocity() * 1.25f;}void WalkState::update(Physics &physics, float delta){ Vec3 v = getInputVelocity() * 1.25f; Vec3 ov = v; if(vectorLength(v)) { iv = v; } else { v = iv; } debugFly(v); data.kcc.move(v, physics, delta); if(vectorLength(ov)) { data.rot = FadeValue(data.rot.value(), axisRotationQuaternion(Vec3(0, lookAngle(normalizeVector(ov)), 0)), 0.1f); }}void WalkState::animationCallback(const AnimationCallbackData &callbackData){ if(!vectorLength(getInputVelocity())) { stateMachine.setNextState(PcState::Idle); } else if(!walkControlDown()) { stateMachine.setNextState(PcState::Run); }}
I developed most of these techniques in the 2D game I was doing before so that was a good way to prototype a lot of the structure I'm using here. It might seem a bit overkill to have a PcState interface and implement each state as a separate derived class and its one I've been tempted to replace with a simple switch-based system, but it is actually quite neat and tidy to be able to encapsulate each state in its own class, along with its own state variables. It works very well to stop you gradually developing a monolithic Player entity which has always been something I've suffered from in past games.

Having moved the physics into the kinematic character controller class this time round has meant that the actual code in these State classes is pretty simple and focused on the bits it should be i.e. behaviour rather than implementation of collisions and so on. Seems to work okay.

Need to start looking at jumping soon, but I might have a hiatus into some normal mapping for the level surfaces first.

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