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About Gorbstein

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  1. [quote name='Wyrmslayer' timestamp='1332837215' post='4925582'] Just a few, eh? ;D [/quote] You don't ask, you don't get :-) Thanks for all your responses. [quote] Casual gamers love puzzles, they don't like competitive gunfights. I'm confused over the balance you want between puzzles, and fighting. [/quote] I'm maybe confusing myself with the terminology. Basically, I'm looking at something that is simple and quick-fix enough for players to log into for half an hour for a quick few levels, but has enough of a 'hook' and enough variety to keep the more hardcore amused over a longer multiplayer campaign. I love games like Enemy Territory for example, but to really get into I find I have to play a full campaign which can last hours. I'm also trying to avoid a complicated class/weapon/stats system that takes hours of play to get into. [quote] Sure, $5 seems fine to me. If we're saying, One class with 2 variable weapons for free, and 4 classes with up to 20 weapons paid. I like that model. Hustlerinc's suggestion of micro-transactions is going to earn you more money though. A lot more. If each class costs 500 Out-Of-Game credits, and each weapon could be bought with 500 In-Game, or 100 Out-Of-Game, and 100 Out-Of-Game costs $1... build your own model, but it's making serious amounts of money for other games. As a designer/player hybrid, I prefer the first option. Feels less of a rip-off / sell-out. But don't be fooled by people who share my opinion. We'd all stick micro-transactions in our own games in a flash.[/quote] Haha, I know what you mean about the sell out feeling. Personally it gets my back up a little when I sense an attempt to quitely and subtly part me with my money, especially when they've got you in a corner. But I do like the idea of 'let's try [i]this[/i] class out and see how it changes the game, it doesn't cost much extra'. [quote] Hope to have helped, [/quote] Thanks for the opinions, I have things to think about now.
  2. [quote name='hustlerinc' timestamp='1332803552' post='4925481'] Have you considered HTML5? Since you want a webhosted game I definitely suggest looking into it. The tech is getting really advanced, really fast, and simple games are allready possible to make.[/quote] The thought never crossed my mind, but I am looking into it so thanks for the pointer. [quote]The biggest advantage is that there is no download. On the other hand you will have to reconsider the payment method, but there are advantages with microtransactions too, instead of getting payed once for the game you charge for every new major weapon/armor/grenade you put into the game. [/quote] Another good point about microtransactions. My main fear about adding new weapons would be unbalancing the multiplayer side; those who'd paid full whack would have an advantage, putting off new players. I hoped to delicately balance the class system so that, even though one class may approach things in a different way (stealth or speed vs brute force) the two classes would be closely balanced in terms of pure capability. But then I could still have a microtransaction to add in each new balanced class. (Play as an "x class" for $y). Cheers.
  3. I'm an experienced developer (coder,artist) who has collaborated on a number of small free games and a few personal projects. I am hoping to branch out on a solo project, and if possible I would like to start making a bit of money from it. As an 'unknown' dev I'm really just testing the water rather than looking for a solid income stream though. I have a day job that pays well and allows me the free time to do all this stuff. The concept is for a casual top-down shooter with a short but sweet single player campaign, but with the emphasis on the multiplayer aspect. The action is intended to be fast-paced and with plenty of depth, but very, very simple to get into. I am looking at a strong use of humour, puzzle/problem solving, and .. well the rest of it is really the 'secret sauce' that I think will make it all work. With the multiplayer aspect I intend to offer an option between a) collaborative team-based ie: players facing a puzzle / level / AI opponent, and b) team vs team duel (ie: 1 team defending an objective, the other attempting to infiltrate / destroy etc). My 'free preview' would offer a completely free short but sweet single player campaign (with tutorial), with access to the multiplayer option in a limited capacity (ie: a restricted number of player classses / types, and no stat save). Unlocking the game by purchasing a login would offer extra classes for the multiplayer, saving of stats, ability to skin the player avatars, plus extra single player levels. I have developed a prototype in C++/Win that I've distributed to a test group and some contacts, and feedback has been pretty awesome. I'd like feedback on a few things here: Free/paid content balance: How does my idea sound? Would a strong single player campaign that hooked you make you want to purchase more levels? If you enjoyed the multiplayer, would you pay for more involved multiplayer access (ie: playing as a different class, saving your stats, etc)? Target audience: Does this sound a good game idea for a casual gamer audience? Is there a market for casual multiplayer games? Target platform : I read everywhere that the download to disk market is not so strong any more, and I read elsewhere that this is not true. Opinions? Would this work as a mobile game, or are mobile players not so interested in realtime multiplayer? I am also concerned about connection latency of the mobile signal, and control methods on mobile devices, does anyone have experience of how well these work? I am thinking of aiming for a browser game (pop in the url, log in, play). This gives me the advantage of always offering the latest code (no version conflicts), with also the option of promoting any other titles I create in the future via, for example, a quick splash screen. Opinions? Getting more specific, I am torn between unity (forces a user download, but faster dev time), and Java (installed most places, but lower level and possibly slower?). Pricing structure : I'm thinking maybe only a couple of dollars/pounds to purchase a login for life that unlocks the features. Feedback on any of this would be very helpful to an experienced coder but novice businessman! D
  4. I came across this problem once when designing a railway system. After all, often you want to be able to move something along a curve at a defined speed, right? At first I was using Bezier curves, and the best solution I came up with personally was to pre-evaluate the curve at the point of creating it, stepping over the curve and building a lookup table as JTippets suggests. The only remaining issue is one of accuracy, as you will a finite number of entries in the lookup. If the point you want lies between two lookup entries, then you'll need to linearly interpolate between them. Not a big deal, but if your curve is very long and the number of lookup entries small, then the amount of deviation will be enough to notice stepping as something moves along it. However, the very best solution I found was to scrap beziers entirely and move to catmull-rom splines, evaluating with the newton-raphson method. (Google catmull rom newton raphson and you'll no doubt find it). This gives a accurate and reliable method of evaulating the spline by arc-length without any lookups.
  5. What about setting a max limit on the deltaTime? If it goes over a certain amount (say 0.066 for 15fps) then you cap it at 0.066. So you might see a judder in the game when your pc lags but you shouldn't get jumps that are big enough for an entity to pass through another. D
  6. composite design question

    When it comes to collisions between entities, and how to deal with those in components, I found the best way personally was to keep the system as generic as possible. If a projectile collides with an entity, then specifically calls that entity's takedamage method, then you're hardwiring the rule that a collision will always give damage. What if later you decide to add a shield to that entity, or want to make it invincible to certain projectiles? If the code is hardwired into the projectile then you don't have flexibility. There's also the possibility that the entity which was hit by the projectile does not have health or a damagable component (an indestructable wall?) , therefore it wouldn't have a takedamage method. Here's the way I do it. My Entity does very little, it simply holds an array of Components, either one or zero of each type being allowed. All components regardless of type have a standard init, deinit, move, update, render, and handleEvent. Each update, the entity simply loops through its components and passes through the init, move, update, render information for that frame, and on a message being sent, just passes it through to all components' handleEvent method. I currently have about 7 component types, but the ones relevant here are CollisionComponent and LifeComponent. These are just abstract classes/interfaces, the ones which do the actual work will subclass these. Bullets have a BulletCollisionComponent. On each update, it asks the world to give it a list of all colliding Entities. If any, it generates a takeDamage event containing the bullet id, the bullet type, the damage factor, and also the id of the entity which fired the bullet originally. It posts that event out to each Entity and then forgets about it. The receiving Entity will pass this event through to all components which will eventually reach the LifeComponent. The LifeComponent, depending on its type, can hold information about the entity's strength, or shields, or how long it has left until self destruct (ie: bullets have a lifetime). In this case, it's a ShipLifeComponent since I'm working with spaceships here. In it's handleEvent method, it'll respond to takeDamage events by working out if the bullet is a type which damages this ship, work out the damage after shields are taken into account, etc, then decrement the strength if necessary. When strength reaches zero it'll spawn a nice particle explosion and tell the parent entity that it's time to deinit. If I have a PowerUpLifeComponent I'd simply ignore takedamage events, unless I want to be able to shoot them down. As for your question about the barrel vs. enemy collision code being exactly the same.. in the above example the [i]receiving[/i] entity's collision code is never called so it's not a problem.. only the entities which perform actions do any work in their collision code. The ones which respond to actions do the work in their lifecomponent. In this case, the enemy lifecomponent would simply decrement the life until it reaches zero. The barrel lifecomponent would do the same, but upon reaching zero would send out its own takedamage event to all entities in range. (I assume the explosive barrel is going to hurt things when it dies). D
  7. What happened to the pc game industry?

    In theory I think digital distribution is a good idea. I'm pleased it's keeping the PC market alive. But I feel like the current incarnation exists through greed and developer convenience rather than actually offering something new and beneficial for me. I know I appear to be in the minority, but so far I've found the experience of buying, downloading and playing digital content to be a slow, cumbersome and frustrating experience and in the end I haven't found any benefit. Like I say I have limited time to play games. I want to be blowing stuff up. I don't want to spend that time messing with steam or other clients which are too heavy and arrogant for their own good. They're slow, they hog resources and network traffic without my permission.. and they just get in my face. Was steam developed by norton?.. it behaves like it. Bearing in mind I'm from the UK.. quality broadband can't be taken for granted. There are parts still on dialup. Like others I also have issues with control. I feel at some point consumers have collectively bent over and allowed the developers to do as they please, as long as they get their next fix. I don't wear a tin foil hat, but wait.. you are asking roughly the same price even though I get less. You want me to spend hours downloading the product (assuming I have the bandwidth to start with). You want me to wait for it to validate. You want me to allow you to then download a gigabyte of updates. You want to validate those. THEN.. I get to play the game, with the slight proviso that this right can be denied at any point. What do *I* get here? Maybe when our broadband network matures and everyone is on fast and unmetred connections this process will be less painful. At the moment I still want to just throw a disc into my machine and start playing. I also hope the clients mature into something better. Give me a really lightweight client that starts instantly, keeps quiet, and gives me full control over what it does. Give me the option of getting it on disc if I want to. Believe me, in some cases the postal system will be faster than a download. D
  8. What happened to the pc game industry?

    [quote name='SteveDeFacto' timestamp='1304882108' post='4808205'] Also a few console single player games require a connection or require a connect to unlock extra content but the large majority do not.[/quote] That's cool. [quote] Seems like the money you would spend on a console could go to paying for a high speed internet connection but if you really don't want a real internet connection then by all means buy a console. [/quote] It's not a question of money really.. most high speed wired connections require long fixed length contracts and I never know whether I will be living in the same place long enough. In the last place I stayed the phone line had been disconnected by the last tenant and the company wanted a huge fee to reconnect it, and then only offered a fixed 18 month contract. It wasn't worth the effort. In these places the mobile broadband actually gives a better connection anyway, not to mention I can work on the move. D
  9. What happened to the pc game industry?

    I'm pleased to know it's still ticking over, for the majority at least. What about the indie PC market? Regarding steam (or other digital providers), I confess I know nothing about it's past failures or present successes. I have no crusade. It simply isn't compatible with my lifestyle or my current setup. If I find the rare time to play games, I don't have the time to wait on download progress bars . In addition, I move around frequently and so I run on mobile broadband. While this meets my needs in almost every way, I simply don't have the bandwidth to download gigabytes of updates. If that means I can't buy games.. then I can't buy games. It seems that if I want to walk down the street, pay for a game in cash, pop it into my machine and shoot away for an hour.. I'll be looking at a console, which is fair enough. (or.. do consoles now require a connection to play single player games too?) D
  10. Avatars

    Ok, thanks for the explanation.
  11. You could say I've been living under a rock, so forgive me for this question. When I graduated some years ago there was a pretty decent PC game industry. I could walk into a game or music shop and find walls of new and older PC titles plus a healthy pre-owned section. When I left uni I dropped out of the computing scene pretty much altogether and spent my time on other things. Only recently I started getting the urge to get back into gaming and programming. Yesterday, I decided to take a wad of cash into town and see what games I could buy. In the three game shops I tried, one did not have ANY pc titles, the other two had one row of shelves with about 15 different games, and no preowned section whatsoever. The places were full of console games. I feel like I'm stepping back in time to the death of the Spectrum or the Amiga, when you couldn't buy new software anywhere. Yet as far as I know the majority of people own PCs.. far more than do consoles. So I don't really get it. So, I left with my bank balance intact and probably will continue to do so. The only game that really caught my eye was Fallout New Vegas (yeah I haven't played it yet..). I was all for giving them the huge amount of cash they were asking, but then I noticed the red box on the back about Steam. I suppose this is for another thread, but I already vowed never to buy another steam game, for so many reasons. D
  12. I've looked all throughout my profile settings and it's not jumping out at me. Is there a setting to change one's avatar to an image? Considering the majority of folk here have no avatar or a standard icon, I think maybe not. But there are a few who do have a specific image.. is this a VIP feature? D
  13. I'd only worry about it being slow if it actually turns out to be slow when you implement it. Just draw how many objects you're going to have on screen and translate and rotate every one and see what FPS you get. If you worry about every function call being slow then it will take forever to get anything done. FWIW most 3d engines will call a translate/rotate before displaying an object. Some will apply a matrix. As long as you don't do it for every triangle you'll be ok If you're looking for the 'fastest' way of doing it you will probably want to pre-rotate and translate all the tile vertices and put them into a vertex buffer, then it's down to one function call per frame for all stuff in the buffer. But this might not work with the way you are doing things. D
  14. In your next function: [code]stream = stringstream( line );[/code] should you not use.. [code] stream << line ;[/code] I haven't read every line of the code but I'm not sure you need to be creating a new stringstream on each read.
  15. Brilliant responses so far, thanks. Already having fun getting my teeth into this. D