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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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  1. Hi, @swiftcoder  : As for hacking/cheating issues, i leave it alone.  yes, players can track in memory when game in running by using certain tools. Regard to purpose of separate data details from program, so i think to re-arrange which data to be harcoded in program, and others to be put in separated data file. @timothyjlaird : If not in urgency and not necessary, or the data not so massive, i prefer to use simple data file, either plain text or converted in binary(or maybe the simple base64). Use mssql or maybe mysql will make player busy in installation & configure the db service. I'm thinking something easier, as you mentioned guess i'll find out about sqlite. Thank you. @frob  : I used to set-up my program to load data every start each of a scene/stage, when change next scene, i'll load again from another stage data file. Currently, i load when only needed, depend on situation of current gameplay progress/state. Is final-packed-format mean to load all everything(stages,object attributes) from the start of the game?  (i have not tried this before) Thanks all..
  2. Human-readable text files are an ideal database format for portability.  If you want to compromise, use a semi-readable format like JSON or XML.   Hi, Yes i agree about readable informations, especially from developers point of view. Currently i use data file in xml format.   But i'm thinking about to keep couple things not to be touched/changed by the players, that we want them to play the game from the start button which we provide for them, and let the game itself interracts with the database/data-file.   So players don't have to concern/open for data that we(developers) don't mean to share details to them. Except if somebody means for hacking, cheating some attributes value, they will use their own efforts & tools  (not a suggestion ).
  3. Hi all, thank you for responses..  now i've got some perspectives..   @Servant of the Lord  : I've already plan to do encryption/encode, or to-binary method(as yours), or maybe compression, in the case: not to let data to be in plain text, just it..    Sure i notice one consequence is i have to provide another program, for me only, to scan-read the encrypted data file, so that i can do modification of some attributes when necessary, then save again back in encrypted. And why to use database tool, from what i imagine is so i can just save/read data, or prepare some initial attributes without do encryption or compression again, just use the tables, and then put database password that i can hardcode inside program.   @ankhd : I'm considering some pros & cons for using database tool with c++.. Maybe, perhaps, i don't know yet,... that the data someday can be ported(too) for use in another program(java,c#), maybe
  4. Hi, I'm finishing a small game prototype with c++, now still considering about game data for character attributes, levels/stages info, and saving game progress.   Currently for character attributes (like health, damage, size(width & height), weapon, shieldpower.. etc), i put it directly harcoded in character class. Example: class Foe1 {    public:       Foe1();       void Moving();       void Attack();      private:       int Size_W = 50;       int Size_H = 80;       int Max_Health = 200;       int Max_ShieldPower = 100;       int DamagePower = 50;       string WeaponType = "TypeA05"; } also with Foe2, Foe3... have same attributes, but with different value.   For levels/stages info, i put into separate files (in xml), so everytime to begin new level i will load the level attribute/info from my level01_data.xml, level02_data.xml... file.   My question: ** Is this ok to put all those harcoded attribute at class?     ..or should i put the attribute value in separate data file, then load it when everytime creating a Foe instance?   ** To save data in separate file, for char.attributes or game progress, i'm considering to save those into encrypted files or using (maybe)a light-weight database tools. Which method is probably better?  (considering the balance of "runtime loading process" and "data management issue" )     This far my program run ok and smooth, but somehow i feel my codes are bit crowded To do modification at next month or 2 months again, i'm affraid to fix certain things may not simple.   Any opinions & suggestion are welcome, thank you..  
  5.     Small angle from me.. Perhaps to put some thing like table of content at the very top page, describe all the main sections title & subs there, so people who read can see the whole (possible)features/topics that available, then they will find based on those section title to the related content, wherever.   Anyway, how is the finding method perform ? If using html, can use hyperlink that pointing to certain section inside one page.
  6. Hi,     I've read about the frame-extraction for .gif file, thanks. This will much help, when i want to do prototyping project and to use an ready-animation image of someone's creation out there.   At first, i was thinking, that i with our graphic designer friend working together to integrate images(created by our team) into our game, then someday, need a change in an object with animation frames, regarding the sequence change or additional images (with)in the sequences itself. So the designer just to modif the image file, as i imagined first time, then when finish, just to plug and play.. ta da.. (without i need to change some code, even nothing matter for the total frame numbers of the sequences)   Some animation objects i need to control the sequences from code, maintain the detail & smoothness in graphic, yes i do. But what about for some other static/passive(not a main) objects ? (like simple-crash explosion, some medium stars that twinkle, bullets, etc..)   Actually not just about the .gif format in specific (sorry the title mention only '..gif image'), maybe any other format, tools, library, anything that animate a group of images. If there are.. That's what i have in mind
  7.   I'm using constants and enums, and a lot too   The constants, i use it for: - hold formula or general fix number (Phi, Dozen, DaysInWeek, etc..) - custom representation, which can be changed depend on different project needs, like:  ScreenWidth, ScreenHeight, FramesPerSecond, etc..   And the enums, for: - behavior that represented by statement, like: IDLE_LEFT, WALK_LEFTDOWN ;  or maybe a boolean: IS_JUMPING, IS_ALIVE, etc.. - error exception, like: FILENOTFOUND or SOUNDERROR, etc..   I just separate the mean, that: for constant => i do care of the value(string or number) they hold inside for enum => i only have to make sure there are no ambigous   So, yes, i use as many needed in my program. Considering that will be easy for modification things by parameter someday, or bugs found 2 months later, and also, when it is a teamwork project where each programmer maybe need to help fixing somebody's work.
  8. I've been search any info related render .gif animation with SDL2 (currently i use this for display, text and sound). And from what i've got is.. since i run the render in my routine (game)frame loop, that .gif does not show animation as i expected, it shows only the sequence 1 from my .gif file.   As i read forums/articles, said that SDL2 rendering static image based, nothing more about feature of automatic/direct draw for ready-animation .gif file. Has anyone found-out one ? But, if to force the idea (display an animated gif file, and let it play itself, independently), is to separate things by multithreading tricks..  haven't tried this. Will this worth ? (not sure) Or maybe need another library, to work together with SDL2, just to show my animated .gif as @phil_t mentioned.   ** i'll find out about this.. thanks!   Well, meanwhile i'll stick on the manual animation mechanism (frame-by-frame) inside my codes, fix up things, gameplay especially, overall.   Thanks for all opinion.. keep up!
  9.   A sequence that long will likely cause problems using an animated GIF - timing. You won't know exactly when the GIF animation has completed. If the user presses "up" and, before the animation finishes, presses another key ("left" or "down" or ...) - what action does your game take, and when do you take it? Do you just interrupt the animation (probably won't be pleasing for the user), or guess at the time it finishes, and/or guess which image in the sequence is being presented to make a smooth transition?     You're right, i had those issue. This time, the process is interrupted, my animation-set instantly changed into the new direction of images sequences. Also, back to the learn of "object not stop instantly, but it slowing down (stopping) until zero-movement", i have to fix this, regarding the transition scenarios. Thanks!   Ok, i think the GIF animation won't work for this necessity of directional (smooth)transition control.   Perhaps, i still be 'allowed'   to use GIF animation for explosion/crash images, since it just to running static in sequence.
  10. ** Yes, i mean an image file with extension .GIF   ** I do feel safer when many things are under control(by my codes), and gives flexibility too, of course. Many ways can be done, or maybe certain, to achieve one purpose, i got it. It is a thought, maybe, about to mix some partial existing objects (if possible), rather than to build/rebuild a new one. Since you mention about gain, mean benefit, pros or cons, yes.. that's what i'm currently thinking..   Well, thanks for the opinion
  11. Hi, I'm working on 2D air shooting (using c++), idea is something like 1943 or Gradius. Basically, player moving around up, down, left & right, shoot bullets to enemy, and enemy shoot too. It works find, and now i'm in modif & fix-up things. The ship movement animate some sprites, following the direction button hit by player. If moving up, then i animate the up-movement sprites, about 4 images within some(1 or 1.5) seconds, as long the player hold the up-button. Same on with moving left, i play the left-movement sprites, also the behavior for moving right & down. And now i have this in mind: 1. I will stick to play animation sequence using program(codes) everytime player push the button. Or, 2. Should i change, by prepare 4 images(up, down, left, right) in gif format, which is each image already play their own frame sequence as i setup from image designer tool (not to play the sequence by codes) I'm thinking about: - Memory consumption when game is running, overall, regarding player's directional movement. - Game modification (if someday i need to change/add the sprites, sequences, etc... related to efficiency or practically) Does anybody have opinion ?  Thanks.
  12.   Yes, for integer, this will do.  Thanks for correction   For the max length of the bar, i guess that 2Fruit want to show to the player the growth of health level that already progressed so far.   Somehow i prefer the idea of static length for the max healthbar (white bar), and so maybe i'll add indicator display in number too (HP / CurrentMaxHP).   But if want to stick on growing bar idea, need to consider about the length limit (against the screen limit). Matter of placement, sure many ways can be.    Programming is fun 
  13. Hi,       ** In assumption that i catched your idea :  If you want the white rectangle bar size grow longer when the max-health increase(level-up), and the red rectangle bar follow in adjustment too, so, when the max-health increase(level-up), it will need re-calculation for healthbar-length(red rect), per base max-health value. For illustration: rectWhiteBar.width  =  2 * health_max ;   // this need to be performed at first game start, and everytime player max-health increased rectRedHealth.width = (health_current / health_max) * rectWhiteBar.width ;    // this performed when there are changes in current-health
  14. Sorry, i forget to mention before, about your last wheel_x..   You do calculate the final position (somekind) like this: wheel_x = wheel_x + linearvelocity_x    Which is the wheel_x always accumulates in every loop, right ? (not using the value of initial wheel_x position from the first loop, for the 2nd loop and the rest)
  15. Hi, umen242, i've just seen your debug log. As i see it right, that your  linearvelocity_x  does rise-up. So, is that value change already meet your expectation ? If you feel too slow, then maybe you need to rise the initial speed. Like try to set about 5 or maybe 10, or 20 times than before..  just to catch any significant changes    Or, you can change some multiplier value in your calculation, that result to your (maybe) final linearvelocity_x  , which affect directly to the wheel_x (front or rear, i don't know, how you plan it  )   Truth is i've never make an object that moved by 2 factors (like front & rear wheel) before. Is there correlation between front & rear wheel ?  I mean, your truck image x_position binded to which wheel ? Or is that 3 objects(images) that moving together simultaneously:  the truck, the front wheel, and the rear wheel ? (just now i'm learning)