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Squiffy

At the risk of being hung, drawn & quartered...

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Hi all, I've been lurking for a while on this site in the hope that I don't make the same mistake I made on another. Hopefully, you guys are a little more tolerant of a silly idea than the others, so here goes..... A Silly Idea I would like to try to assemble a game from unused (or even previously used) snippets of code written by other coders. On the face of it this looks like I'm saying "Please write me a game", but bear with me and I'll explain why my plan is slightly different to that. Many, many people write snippets of code, either to demonstrate their own ability or to solve other peoples problems. This code is often of use to others and is the reason why forums are a great way to spread knowledge. If one searches hard enough, I'm sure that there's a snippet for almost every occasion, whether it's been uploaded or is rotting on someones hard drive. I would like to upload a game idea and, stage by stage, the descriptions of the bits of code needed to make it work. I will write some of this code myself should no one have a snippet that "best fits" the task in hand, and I will also adjust the code to fit in the environment of the overall project. There will be no project team per se, I'm not asking for anyone to count themselves in. I will just start a thread and ask, from time to time, that people upload anything relevant to the task or subtask in hand. I will publish the "glued" code as we go for anyone who's interested. I could, of course, have just done that, but I thought it might be an interesting experiment to see if a game could be written this way with everyone knowing the intention. My project management (there's that horrible phrase) is of myself, contributions would be for the hell of it and would take up very little time as I'm only asking for existing snippets of code. Should people want to write code then I won't say no... I hope everyone can see this as a genuine experiment, not as a "please do all my work" in the traditional sense. It IS a please do most of my work, but in a different way and I will be contributing heavily. I am an experienced coder, but not of games. If I have a specialisation, it is in "glueing" code together and disecting other peoples thought processes. Any comments?

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I think the idea has merit, on some levels.

First and foremost, it really does validate all the claims that everything you ever needed and/or wanted to know can be found on the internet. However, I think more information is needed as to what type of game you're talking about, maybe you want to keep it under wraps and your "snippets" will be vague enough that you don't really need to give out the details, but I think contributors might like to know what their work is going towards.

Not to mention, how will you keep any consistency throughout the project? Everyone will use different variable names, class names, you name it they'll name it something different, which could become a colossal headache for you the "glue gun guy" when it comes to making it all mesh together.

Secondly, what would be the point of making this "Cut n' Paste" game? What does it benefit the gamer, the game developer (yourself) or the game community? It does sound as if you're just asking for a free game to be made by others at your benefit. In most cases, programmers (at least some of them) will be willing to part with a bit of wisdom here and there for those who are stuck and it's no big deal. But you're literally asking for an entire game(for the most part) and I don't see why. If you are an experienced coder it shouldn't be overly difficult for you to write your own game and it would most certainly be a far more rewarding experience in the end.

Anyway, if you persist in your desire to make this collection of snippets, then more power to you and I wish you good luck.

Vopisk

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Quote:
Original post by Vopisk
Secondly, what would be the point of making this "Cut n' Paste" game?


As far as I understand him, this is intended to be an experiment or a proof of concept. He wants to find out if there really is a snippet of code for every situation, and to find that out he picked a certain type of project, that being a game in this case.

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Quote:
Original post by Captain Nuss
Quote:
Original post by Vopisk
Secondly, what would be the point of making this "Cut n' Paste" game?


As far as I understand him, this is intended to be an experiment or a proof of concept. He wants to find out if there really is a snippet of code for every situation, and to find that out he picked a certain type of project, that being a game in this case.


Yes, but, with the open-source movement [see http://www.sourceforge.net], it is kind of a non sequitur experiment when entire game engines are open source, sound files and graphic files are freely distributed and in general, source code abounds for practically every application you might like to create.

It can be done, since what it really amounts to is hacking other's work to pieces and mis-matching it into your own project [see Code Reusability in any programming book]. I don't think of this as much of an experiment, but that's just me and my two cents.

Vopisk

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Hi all,
first off, I suppose "experiment" is the wrong word. It's more of a "can I make a game from your waste paper bin/archive files?".

Re the different vars/styles/etc., that is my challenge. I want to use others snippets rather than whole programs so the act of shoehorning them into one proggy is made slightly (and I do mean that literally) more easy.

As to why, good question. Don't know. Guess I just prefer hacking others code to writing from beginning to end on my own. Shrug. I'm not asking for lots of work to be done by you guys, just if you have it lying around and want to upload it. If you don't, just ignore me.

Anyway, the general reponse I'm getting from various bulletin boards is (this one excepted so far) that I'm a donkey for even daring to waste the eyetime of people who may read it.

Hey ho. My mum still loves me.

PS - is what I'm suggesting so different from a VB programmer glueing all the OCX's together (text box, button, etc etc) to make an app? In concept at least...

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Original post by Vopisk
Yes, but, with the open-source movement [see http://www.sourceforge.net], it is kind of a non sequitur experiment when entire game engines are open source, sound files and graphic files are freely distributed and in general, source code abounds for practically every application you might like to create.


The goal obviously is to use short snippets instead of open source project code.

Quote:
Original post by Squiffy
Hi all,
first off, I suppose "experiment" is the wrong word. It's more of a "can I make a game from your waste paper bin/archive files?".


Well, you have a question you'd like an answer to and you are willing to take measures to find the answer, so it basically is an experiment.

Quote:
Original post by Squiffy
PS - is what I'm suggesting so different from a VB programmer glueing all the OCX's together (text box, button, etc etc) to make an app? In concept at least...


What you're trying to do seems to be a level higher than reusing OCX's as you're actually looking for the code that glues the OCX's together (so to speak).

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Re the comment about the project type, there isn't one yet. Nothing will be secret, I'm not trying to "do a game" with all your hard work so I can claim the credit.

The plan was to say to everyone, "look, here's the game idea....blah blah blah" and then, to kick it off, ask for some "best fit" code to do, say, the opening fade in of the title graphic. Then, I'd post to ask for, say, a menu system to give "Play/Options/Quit" to the player. Etc., etc.

I wouldn't expect anyone to go write the code for me, but if they had a piece of code lying around they could cut 'n paste then I'd take it (or them) and do with it what I can.

There's thousands of coders out there with great routines (some written just to answer questions on boards such as these), and as I think I said before, most people never create a game (me included) because they don't have time/drive/whatever.

If the general consensus is that I'm just a sponging idiot who's comments are so offensively moronic that the air I breathe should be reallocated, then I shall disappear forthwith. That does seem to be the consensus on CodersWorkshop and others.

If, however, a few of you who have hard drives full of snippets that should, through coding humanity, see the light of day rather than be condemned to a lifetime of obscure subdirectoried archives, then what's anyone got to lose?

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Well, since I have been your largest opponent so far, let me say that your further explanation of your goal and reasons behind it make it quite another matter all together. I think it DOES sound like a neat idea, and something that could work, given that there are literally thousands of snippets just lying around. Maybe you could call the game engine "Patchwork" haha.

Anyway, to those of you who so boldly define a distinction between "snippets" and "open source code". Please. Snippets are just small pieces of open source code, so it's entirely possible to go and hack someone's open source project to get the "snippet" that you need. Of course, snippets don't necessarily need to be open source, but more often than not, when I've seen the word snippet, I haven't seen any e-commerce backbone right beside it.

Anyway, good luck once again with your project, I for one do not have huge amounts of snippets lying about to help with the project, I just thought I'd throw out my opinion and see the response I got.

Vopisk

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Vopisk - compared to other places, your criticism seems like praise :)

Ok, as the age of this board certainly seems to be above that of CW, I'm going to try it. Hell, if it fails, no one will have lost anything but me. If it works, I'll go into smug mode :)

Give me a day and I'll post my game idea. It won't be anything fantastic (as I said I've yet to have one). I'll list the order I intend to assemble the game in, and soon after I'll start asking for snippets.

Before this, though, two things :

(1) ADMIN'S - Which section should I post all this in? I could post in all the relevant sections depending on what I'm after, but it would make sense to post in one area. Your suggestions please?

(2) What language/library/engine am I going to use? Well, good question. Suggestions and whatever welcomed. I've been mucking about with Haaf, Torque (in c), Blitzbasic, PlayBasic & Purebasic (for the hell of it) & PyGame.

The game will probably be 2D to start with (let's not get too ambitious here!), so it'll come down to what has the most community support.

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Quote:
Original post by Vopisk
Anyway, to those of you who so boldly define a distinction between "snippets" and "open source code". Please. Snippets are just small pieces of open source code, so it's entirely possible to go and hack someone's open source project to get the "snippet" that you need. Of course, snippets don't necessarily need to be open source, but more often than not, when I've seen the word snippet, I haven't seen any e-commerce backbone right beside it.

Indeed, the terminology wasn't quite correct. What we meant (or what I meant at least) were complete open-source projects as opposed to short code snippets that don't describe a complete program.

Squiffy: I'm looking forward to see the outcome. Just be sure to pick a simple project to keep the chances of it being actually completed as high as possible.

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