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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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I'm wanting to draw a large number of rectangles (in the thousands), each of which displaying a particular texture from an upfront generated pool of textures(around 250, all of which are the same size/format). Whilst there are thousands of rectangles, there is only going to be around 10 - 20 different textures needed each frame, as many of the rectangles share the same texture. However, the 20 textures used in one frame could be completely different to the textures used in the next.


Currently I'm doing this using a draw call per rectangle, resulting in thousands of drawcalls per frame. I'd like to experiment with how it could be split up over fewer drawcalls. My plan is to have one giant dynamic buffer that [all/or some] of the rects get writtin to each frame, and store the textureID in the vertex data, for example each vertex would have the layout [Pos,UV, TexIndex]. I would then setup a Texture2DArray in the shader that will be updated each frame for the textures.


How do I update the Texture2DArray each frame though?


Do I really have to recreate the array each frame, resulting in passing the data of 20 textures from cpu to gpu? .. or is there a more efficient way to do it?


Ideally, it like to just load up the texture pool on the GPU, and then each frame, pluck out the ones I want to fill the texture array, is something like that possible?




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You need to use UpdateSubresource to update it.  This will require you to have a second texture with staging usage that you upload the data to (via UpdateSubresource) and then you can copy from the staging resource over to the actual texture array that you will use in your rendering.


That assumes that the data has to come from the CPU every frame.  If you can create textures ahead of time for each of your tiles, then you could just copy them directly to your array and avoid the CPU completely.  This is most likely the preferred way to do it.


One final note - have you considered using a texture atlas instead of an array?  That would probably allow you to have access to all of your textures without messing with the texture resources every frame, and then you can just update your rect data to have the right offset into the atlas.  Then you could use instancing to reduce the amount of data you are storing per rect, and it should be ready to go!


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