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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.

rypyr

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  1. Quote:Original post by Oluseyi The vast majority of programmers are neither skilled nor perfectionists. They're merely incompetent. The reason they are reluctant to use infrastructural code written by others is not because they want a perfectly baroque architecture - though that's the excuse they'll use - but because understanding someone else's code is frequently hard, especially if you have to do deep integration Oluseyi, speak for yourself :P While I agree with you that integration with other people's code is indeed hard, I don't think it was because I was incompetent or afraid to do it. In fact, in some cases I consciously did realize that using software (let's say an XML parser library) would have been easier than writing my own (i.e. a configuration file parser). I think the reason I didn't like using code was actually because I love to create - software is about the creation process for me (i.e. the artistic side of writing code coupled with the satisfaction of implementing a logical design). If I ended up using somebody else's engine, well then I had lost an opportunity to create/design - and that usually was enough to convince me that other people's library designs weren't good enough for me. I admit that this was an arrogant and unrealistic stance to take. Arrogant because I'm not the best coder that ever lived. Unrealistic because of the scope vs. resources problem in hobby game development. Since that time I think I've overcome my arrogance and realized just how much good and free software there is out there to use. And on the flip-side, it also made me realize that good software design does not necessarily translate into a good software application. And vice versa. Mozilla is a perfect example here: really overly designed and too-complicated software architecture, but in the end they turned it into a good application (Firefox). If you contribute to Mozilla you know what I mean! ;)
  2. No, I didn't mean to imply that refactoring is a bad thing at all. In case it wasn't clear, I'm a believer in getting it working first, before getting it architecturally perfect - at least for hobby programming. But it seems to me there's a difference between refactoring some code because an architectural solution is now clearer and writing code in the first place that you know will be reworked later.
  3. I've had my share of game projects that have started and stopped. Generally speaking, the "stopping" is because I usually dig myself too deep, try to design my own engine, try to make everything architecturally perfect, and in fact, never get to actually building the game (just the infrastructure, so to speak). A couple years ago, I changed my philosophy to one that aligns with "Agile Programming" techniques (without really knowing that is what you call it). That is, short "bursts" or "runs" of development that accomplish some specific (usually observable) goals. This philosophy fits in well with my lack of spare time, since I am a full-time employee doing less interesting software work as well as a full-time dad, etc. I simply cannot commit to a huge project, I need to see some very visible gains every few weeks. Maybe you can summarize my philosophy as "aim low, shoot often". In the process of setting shorter and very specific goals, I've also learned how to adapt and use other people's software/libraries (as opposed to building everything I need from scratch). Sometimes that's the only way to get something done in the timeframe I give myself. Since adapting my approach, I've created some reasonable successful web applications and browser game demos (in my own eyes) and it's given me something to point to and say "Look, I built this". It's led me to start collaborating with a friend on a simple casual PC game that we can work on together using the same development philosophy. The main goals are always in sight, and the first priority is to "get it working" as opposed to "designing the architecture perfectly". It's led to warts and the occasional re-factoring, but so far, we've stayed roughly on track (ok, we had to give ourselves an extra week one run so that we could each do our taxes). What do people think about this? I'm a software engineer by day, so this type of philosophy rubs my "perfectionist" and "architect" side the wrong way, but at the same time I realize that I just don't have the resources (time and money) to invest in a lot of up-front software design for these hobby projects. Especially when it's such a small team of one or two people. Incremental improvements, baby steps, seems to be the only way I can make advances in my hobby development. I'm curious to hear what other people have experienced/learned...
  4. A friend and I have been working a little bit here and there on a simple indie game project in Linux. We use the following (decent) tools: - SDL with accompanying side libraries - KDevelop for C/C++ work - SVN for source control - GIMP for artwork I thought I'd find out what other folks are using in their environments. What languages are you using? What platforms/frameworks/libraries (OpenGL, Torque, etc)? Do you use Visual Studio? MingW? Eclipse? Command-line gcc? What do you use for artwork? Models? Audio engineering? Source control? What do you use for debugging? I just want to get a feel for the "indie" game dev community these days, but I'm not only interested in the Free kinds of tools here, too. I'd just like to learn what a lot of people are using... Thanks, Jeff
  5. If I try to Edit My Password from the control panel, it gives me a broken page. In Firefox, it's a VBScript/ASP problem, in IE it's a "The page cannot be displayed".
  6. If you use SDL, there is a library (SDL_svg) that allows you to load in SVGs and get them into a SDL_Surface at a given resolution...
  7. I'm not sure, but this link may help you.
  8. Quote:Original post by Metaphorically Um, if they're not printable characters... what exactly did you expect to see? Um, I think his point is that they are Unicode characters that should render, yet the Java UI is not doing it...
  9. Your top menu needs to be nudged to the right so the left edge of the "Home" lines up with the main text pane. Also, what are the differences between the left and top navigation menus? I think your text gets too close to the borders too...
  10. Quote:Original post by Metaphorically Actually it's probably the Spidermonkey engine (Rhino is written in Java iirc). I seem to recall something about it being able to use the browser's scripting engine instead of the internal one, but I've never done enough testing to see the difference. My bad, Spidermonkey it is...
  11. Quote:Original post by markr I didn't actually realise that you could put scripts in SVG, I had assumed that the only way to script it was to write javascript in the page that somehow scripted the SVG DOM. But that doesn't work, right? Mark, ideally you would be able to script either way: from within the SVG or from a XHTML page that contains the SVG - though this latter isn't supported consistently yet (particularly because IE doesn't support XHTML and SVG, thus we have to use a plugin for the SVG content). Quote:Original post by markr Adobe SVG has its own script interpreter? Yes, though truth be told, they actually used Mozilla's javascript engine (Rhino). Unfortunately the version of the engine they used is a little dated now and doesn't support niceties like XMLHTTP (as a consequence, Adobe SVG uses proprietary methods like getUrl()... It's interesting stuff, anyways...
  12. Mark, Sorry, but you are mistaken. The Adobe SVG Viewer plugin indeed supports scripting of the SVG DOM. Try it out, it works (I have tested it). What is more difficult is scripting between an HTML DOM and a referenced SVG document's DOM (which is not what these games do, they are standalone SVG files). Regards, Jeff
  13. Sander, You can download the Adobe SVG Viewer plugin and make it work for Firefox 1.0.x (following instructions at bottom of this page, but of course I would recommend upgrading to 1.5 anyway ;) Btw, I haven't officially tested this configuration so if you do, please let me know how it goes. Regards, Jeff
  14. I've been exploring SVG over the last year or so when I have a chance and I've managed to cook up two proof-of-concept demos that work in IE (with Adobe plugin) as well as Firefox 1.5: Yet Another SVG Tetris (also works in Opera 9 TP1) SVG Solitaire I would appreciate any constructive feedback. Clearly SVG has a ways to go before it catches on in the general web development community, but the upcoming release of Opera 9 and Safari with native SVG support should help. You can see some of my other SVG web projects on my blog. Thanks, Jeff
  15. Thank you for that Optimization flag tip!