Norman Barrows

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About Norman Barrows

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  1. just came across this. good for a laugh.
  2. Favourite cocktails?

    I typically drink beer. Bud. sometimes Heineken. I try to drink a glass of sangria each day for health purposes, but seldom do. occasionally dark rum or wild turkey 101 - neat. when i'm in the mood. best drink i ever came across: an "alabama slammer" from Donato's Pizza at Ohio State University. the name is misleading as its unlike your typical "slammer" recipe. 2 parts Disaronno amaretto 1 part grenadine 1 part sloe gin (hence the "slammer" name) 2 parts 100 proof Smirnoff's vodka 6 parts OJ serve in tall glass full of ice, then stir. the melted ice is an ingredient. without it. its like a concentrate. needs a little water to get the correct strength. tastes just like watermelon candy! Girls love it!
  3. Realtime mocap used in Hellblade

    A very interesting article on Ninja Theory's realtime motion capture technology as seen in Hellblade, and demoed at GDC and at SIGGRAPH. https://www.engadget.com/2017/08/08/ninja-theory-hellblade-motion-capture-demo-video/
  4. 1. make it clear that advanced hit location, etc is part of the combat system. the tutorial game is a good place for this. 2. add a "quick combat" option to the game's main menu (Continue, New, Load, etc). this will put them into a quick combat with a random opponent to practice combat. Quick combat is a common feature in games such as flight sims. the "quick battle" option in games like total war is similar. Rockland's Caveman v1.0 (2000) - a paleoworld FPSRPG featured quick combat with up to 25 combatants per side (including the player). you could set the number appearing and the weapon and armor loadouts for each side. this was a separate feature from the tutorial and campaign games.
  5. Balancing & Scaling heals in an RPG

    if i have a ton of armor, i don't take a lot of damage and can get by with a baseline healing spell and mana levels. if i have a ton of hit points but little or no armor, i need a TON of healing potions, or powerful healing spells and the TONS of mana required to cast them. that's more or less just the way it is. what do healing spells and potions have to do with armor and armor buffs? i would think they would be two separate things. yup. unless you go with healing spells and potions that heal some percentage of damage or percentage of total health, or heal the target up to some percentage of total health, etc. pour all your stat increases in Skyrim into health and see how useless healing potions become. Just cause i have a lot of hit points, healing should not be more effective on me than the guy with lots of armor instead. By the same token, it should not be less effective either - which would seem to indicate percentage base healing is better. with fixed value healing, HP builds take longer to heal. with percentage healing, everyone take the same amount of time / spells / potions to heal. this seems to make a bit more sense. why should a great warrior like Hercules or Achilles require longer to heal up than the average joe? Of course the real solution is to make healing based on the target's constitution stat. so a baseline healing spell might heal 10% of the targets max HP in damage, and the CON stat might mod this to something in the range 5% through 15%.
  6. Modern empire builder / total war game?

    is that the one that "Commander the Great War" uses the engine from? IE basically a computerized turn-based, hex maps and unit counters style tabletop war game? i've only heard of hearts of iron but have the great war, panzer corps, panzer general, blitzkrieg, panzerblitz, and panzer leader. RTS style realtime combat as opposed to turn-based hex map wargame style combat might be cool. the code changes required are trivial. the map actually becomes easier to implement if you're doing true hex maps (1). just a thought. you'd have to try it out to be sure. one thing to look out for in realtime god games though, if the player can accelerate time enough, they seem to tend to become boring. instead of sweating over every engagement, you sort of deploy and wait and see. i'm talking really fast here - insanely fast. like a RTT where the whole thing is over in a matter of seconds. I've noticed this in RTTs i've worked on. The same would apply to the combat portion of RTSs. (1) you can just use a high resolution 2d array - say 10x the resolution of the hex map - with no need for hex style movement and adjacency code.
  7. Income sources in modern /sci-fi empire builder

    in total war type games you have taxes and trade, and some factions or settlements ( perhaps?) seem to get some additional base amount. you also have a number of resource types (raw materials) that allow the construction of specific types of buildings and units - including buildings that can generate more income via taxes. in RTS type games you typically have gold as a resource - which becomes money (perhaps with a smelter and a mint). you can do the same with things like silver, platinum, palladium, diamonds, uranium, etc. but these are all forms of mining income or to put it in more general terms: income from state controlled resources. say you're the government of a country. how can you get money? tax stuff, trade with other countries, exploit natural resources... can't think of much else. ah, one more, and total war has it: tribute payments from subjugated countries. but this could also be considered just another form of taxes.
  8. this creates a d3d device, and d3d points to it. and then this sets d3d to NULL, then checks to see if d3d is zero or non-zero, and executes the code block if its non-zero. Since it was just set to NULL (ie zero), its never non-zero, so the code block never executes, and you are always NULL-ing out your d3d device pointer. A guaranteed show stopper there. this is because evaluating expressions inside the condition statement has a higher precedence (IE gets done first). In the end its simply a typo quite common to c/c++. lesson learned: always double check those == statements. its a typo that syntax checking can't pick up, which leads to a logic error. it can only be found by code inspection or testing (or both ?).
  9. Unity Movement and speed issues

    intervale is a float and passedt is a double. so its doing either a 32 or 64 bit cmp (comparison) of the two values. its HIGHLY unlikely that you just happen to call Parse(Timer.secondes) when the result is EXACTLY equal to interval.  example: fixedUpdate runs and gets a passedt of 4.999999.... fixedUpdate runs the next time and gets a passedt of 5.00000000000001 right there you've missed the 5 second point. it needs to be >=   one possible general algo for timers is: 1. start time = get_time() 2. repeat: ET = get_time() - start time. until ET>= desired ET. ET is the same as your passedt and desired ET is the same as your intervale.
  10.   perhaps a better explanation of the desired gameplay might help. 
  11.   by "altitude" i mean distance from the ground below the object to the object. not from sea level or some other arbitrary value, such as y=0 in a left hand 3D system.       altitude is usually determined by subtracting the object y from the ground y returned by the heightmap.
  12. Gravity systems?

    yep, that's the basic algo for particle based fluid simulation. applications include aerodynamics, hydrodynamics, gravity simulations, weather simulations, perhaps even nuclear explosion simulations - have to look that last one up.  As i said, rather processor intensive.  Supercomputers and parallel processing.
  13. when using ECS to optimize update, the ideal situation is to have contiguous arrays of components in the data cache. ideally you want to iterate just once over each array of componenet types 
  14. most games are a form of real-time simulation software. the basic algo is: 1. draw everything (render) 2. process user input (input) 3. move everything (update) repeat until quit. grab paper and pen and draw the flowchart for that. the basic algo for render is "for each visible object, draw it". this too can be expressed as a simple flowchart. but very soon technical details make things trickier. polled input: for each pressed control - process that control. queued input: for each input message. process that message. similar, but not quite the same. at this point, almost all examples will be language specific. what you want is the algos that code implements. good examples will explain the algo first. by googling algos as needed and drawing up the flowcharts from the descriptions you should be able to get what you want. eventually you'll come to picture all but the most complex flowcharts in your head just by reading the algo, and wont need the diagram on pen and paper anymore.
  15. Gravity systems?

    just look up how its done in the real world and do the best you can with the hardware you have.   odds are it will pretty processor intensive - IE particle fluid simulation type stuff.