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EagleEye

Looking for a good language/API for website game/app.

8 posts in this topic

My brother (AIDaveMark) told me to post here to ask some questions about a small web-based card game project I'm looking in to starting up. My main purpose in this is to get a nice and easy project out of the way and under my belt, and most importantly: to learn newer technology to enhance my skill set.

I have been out of the development world for maybe 4 years or so, because I've been getting my degree in middle grades education. I am pretty much out of the contractor/development scene as far as being employed by others is concerned, but I wanted to delve back in to my own private development, because there are various projects I want to complete on my own.

Anyway, here's what I'm looking to create...

- Web-based (as in, could be played via a facebook iframe, or directly from a web page "object").
-- Could be a Flash app, Java Applet, or Silverlight app... or maybe some other type of technology that would work?
- Needs to allow for rich/vibrant colorful 2D graphics... no need for 3D here.
- Must allow for dynamic data flow between client and server, with the server notifying various clients of game state changes caused by other clients (new player entered the room, player played a card, etc).
- Of course, access to a database.

Here are some stipulations and caveats...
- My web host is an Apache server, running PHP and MySQL... which may preclude me from using MS technologies.
- I have tried working with JavaFX... and simply can't get my head around it, or maybe it just isn't appropriate for what I'm looking for. Thus, I'd like to avoid it if possible.
- I have looked in to making a Java Applet with Netbeans 7. Netbeans seems to enjoy causing Blue Screens of Death on my system (Windows 7 64bit). I'd like to avoid Java now if at all possible.
- I have heard that HTML5 is really the new and kickin' thing... but I'm not sure if it's appropriate for this type of development... advice on this would be particularly welcome!
- I don't want to spent $200 just to TRY to make a Flash app... so if Flash is recommended, please direct me to a good stable and free Flash IDE to use.
- I am self-taught in a bunch of stuff, including VBA, VB6, and VB.NET... PHP and MySQL are no problem for me either. I have worked with C++ and C#, and done scripting with LUA and PERL before, but not in any expert capacity.

Let me put it this way... I am fairly self-sufficient in learning things on my own... I just need a push in the right direction so I don't end up wasting time trying to learn 6 different technologies to try to determine WHICH of them is appropriate or which one I find the most "ergonomic". I don't want to have to kludge things together just to make it work, and I don't want to sacrifice power, stability, or accessibility to the user, just to make my own development task easier.

I'm willing to learn something entirely new if it means I have a tool that will easily deploy without requiring the user to install some esoteric 3rd party plugin or runtime to their computer... I'd LIKE the user to just be able to load the website and PLAY without having to download anything they wouldn't already have to download to watch youtube videos or use any number of other sites (like pogo.com or facebook).

Anyway, thanks in advance for any advice you have. :)
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I am going to have to say Java as well. Works very well and you do not need an IDE at all. I guess the same can be said for any language really. I compile all my java programs via a batch program and use the old school notepad.exe as my editor. *I just couldn't get any JAVA IDE working "correctly" (How I wanted) so decided not to even use one*

Though Notepad++ is great if you only want an editor and don't mind learning how to compile and sign your own jar files via a command line.
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HTML5 is a decent platform, using canvas for graphics, and either XMLHttpRequest or Web Sockets for the networking, depending on your requierments.
I am not sure if Web Socket server side updated implementations are out there though. The specs are changing pretty fast.
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[quote name='0Circle0' timestamp='1326873132' post='4903909']
I am going to have to say Java as well. Works very well and you do not need an IDE at all. I guess the same can be said for any language really. I compile all my java programs via a batch program and use the old school notepad.exe as my editor. *I just couldn't get any JAVA IDE working "correctly" (How I wanted) so decided not to even use one*

Though Notepad++ is great if you only want an editor and don't mind learning how to compile and sign your own jar files via a command line.
[/quote]

I'm kind of a whining baby when it comes to command line compiling. I guess you could say I'm of the state of mind that "damnit, we have all of this technology, we should have stable and ergonomic IDEs for any top tier programming language by now!"

I may have to give Java another look and use Eclipse instead of Netbeans, and see how that goes.
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Further question: With Eclipse, there's a "for Java Developers" download ( http://www.eclipse.org/downloads/packages/eclipse-ide-java-developers/indigosr1 )
, and a "for Javascript web developers" download... ( http://www.eclipse.org/downloads/packages/eclipse-ide-javascript-web-developers/indigosr1 )...

As far as I'm aware, Javascript is built in to an HTML page and is NOT an actual applet... is that correct? I'm just going off of what I've learned by osmosis in the past... so if I could get some direction on which way to go here. I have this odd feeling this is a MAJOR fork in the road and I could very easily choose the wrong path and waste a ton of time.
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Yes, javascript is a scripting language embedded in HTML, and doesn't really have much in common with java except the name and a slight resemblance in syntax.

I wish I could give proper advice on what to choose, but personally I'm not into developing for the web at all.
Java is probably a pretty safe bet though, with lots of help to get and a mature and stable platform.
HTML5 is cool and new and probably a good option too, but there will be less examples and help to get, and a platform that might change or have unexpected bugs/unimplemented features.
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I think I have found something that will really make this a lot easier...

Unity

Evidently, in the 3.5beta they have available right now, they have the ability to "build to flash". This means no plugin download for most people, plus the game I create can be put out to android, iphone, generic "web" deployment (with a plugin download), etc, etc... all fully supported from this one "unified" (ahhh, I see what they did there!) platform.
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