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Since I've started doing a bit more relevant game programming, I might as well give a quick update on this stuff.

For those who don't go to #graphicsdev, I guess I might as well fill you in on what I've been doing since my last journal entry. The majority of the time was spent making a new algorithm that I called "Deferred Antialiasing", which is intended to basically allow for antialiasing in a couple situations where AA was virtually impossible to do, i.e. HDR rendering and/or deferred shading. It works pretty well, but it's also a bit intensive on memory and performace. I also haven't tested it out on a practical modern game application (normal mapping, high frequency detail and so on) but it still works pretty well I think. If you want some details on it I can provide some more.

Lately though I've been working on university stuff, and kicking myself in the face for just dicking around sometimes when I could be doing some game or graphics programming. Personally, this is primarily because the project that I've got my sights aimed for is so enormous that I quickly get scared off.

Recently though, I've managed to be brave and start working on a couple components that I might need, such as a texture manager (well, more like material sorter). Around the same time, one of my friends over at the ICB2 mentioned this game called Geometry Wars that he just downloaded onto his X360. I checked out a couple videos over at IGN, and thought the game looked really cool, fun, and wasn't overly daunting. Here's a screenshot of it in action:

So, right now I'm just making a clone of that to develop the texture manager I'll need for the greater project. As one could immediately guess from the video though, particles is something that I need to do as well. Lots of them.

In the past couple days I've been working on particles, and also learning some low-end D3D stuff like vertex declarations. Right now I've got particles running well. I can do game updates on them, render them properly, stuff like that. However, I really want to match the chaos and particle count of the X360 version of Geometry Wars, so optimization will be a really big issue for this (Reltham has been a huge help in that regard so far). As it is, I can safely do fifty thousand particles on my X800Pro and P4 3.0GHz and get 50fps, but I want to really increase that number as high as I can.

Here's the current setup with the particles running (I dunno how many are in the frame in this example). Basically it renders the particles with a monochrome texture, which is multiplied by some colour value associated with the particle.

My next entry (monday or tuesday) I'll probably have the particle system done, working, and hopefully running faster, or at the very least be able to handle a lot more particles.
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