Progress

Progress

Postby hc » 31 Mar 2011, 17:31

There were large refactoring efforts (still going on til the next release) to make the code-base ready for the next decade.
But before I bore you to death here is a small update on what's freshly implemented for the next release:

    + There are enhanced street-tiles I did for an request on OpenGameArt.org and these will enhance the city scene, too.
    + Recently motivated I gave foliage another shot with particle sprite trees and more foliage textures. Still you wont see a dense forest but let yourself be surprised.
    + Talking about burning trees and bushes: Expect destroyed objects to burn and smoke a bit.

Sorry, no screens so far.
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Re: Progress

Postby hc » 18 Apr 2011, 17:53

The new GIT repository is a sneak preview ;) , but for your convenience here an excerpt from the doc/RELEASES file:

20110417.jpg


2011_04_17 r19
Radiant Nature release:

Enhanced Sky Model
- Night is darker
- Fog adjustments
Enhanced Models
- Adjusted collider to actual animated model size.
- Added Scorpion mech model
- Added Flopsy mech model
- Added tank models
- Added cockpit frame to basic mech model
- Disabled weapon rendering in favor of model rendering
- Selection of models randomized so far
- Made walkcycle more natural
- Added bird walkcycle
Enhanced Landscape Rendering
- Added crater-modification
- Added Sprite based particle Trees
- Added Tree-clusters frustum culling for speedup and quality
- Adjusted texture grain
- Woodland in this release
Enhanced Immersion
- Adjusted field of view
- Added acceleration heaviness
- Added steering heaviness
- Added smoke after explosion
Enhanced Usability
- Camera mode can still be changed when wrecked
Enhanced Internals
- Object-role interdependencies split into decoupled bound-components
- Glued component-attributes through bindings in objects
- Component'ified Weapons and other functional structures
- Replaced weapon mount matrix with quaternion+position for effective binding
- Cleaned up model scaling

This release has some visual highlights like the trees, smoke and new terrain.
But there are major changes under the hood stepping beyond the object-with-roles concept:
Object-with-components. But there is more to the new internals than just
"hey, objects are built of components" (as if that would be new). No, it is how
components are coupled or rather decoupled. A solution to this dilemma are
chip-like components which only act on their own state without any method-calls
to any other component. Interaction is achieved by binding input and output variables
(ie. instance member variables) of two components at the object level. Like
soldering chips to a printed circuit board. The idea itself isn't new.
This concept of binding components is precedented by hardware-description-language's
Entity+Portmap and by Bean+BeansBinding.
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Re: Progress

Postby qubodup » 18 Apr 2011, 23:17

Looking awesome! I'll try it and probably just complain how the projectiles feel unfitting :)
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Re: Progress

Postby hc » 19 Apr 2011, 19:58

It's always like that: Improve the most uncanny A and it leaves B as uncanny ;)
So, then projectiles are on the todo list for one of the next releases.
BTW I'm sorry I didn't fix/improve the text issues yet (console output, message-display, 64bit-bug) - but they are on my list.

Don't nail me down but maybe I can compile a win32 binary eventually and will put the binary up as a separate download.
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Re: Progress

Postby hc » 06 Jun 2011, 23:16

Project cleanup and structure:
Before, almost all source files went into one directory and there where only logical folders inside the Netbeans project. Now there is a physical directory structure, resembling a java package classpath: Eg. de/hackcraft/proc/ for procedural content generation algorithms.
The makefile takes care of the rest: Find source files in any subdirectory, automatic dependency generation, build all.
While this doesn't add any features, I feel this was an overdue cleanup measure before adding more and more...

c++0x, c++, macros and loops:
I'm eagerly awaiting more c++0x support. I just have gcc 4.4.3 installed in my Long-Time-Support Ubuntu. And I don't want to break backwards compatibility, too early. But I really can't await Range-based for-loops in gcc 4.6. (yes, Java got them for some years now): for (Type i: listOfType) { ... }; As for now, LW uses the new "auto" keyword which makes using iterators a lot easier: for (auto i = listOfType.begin(); i != listOfType.end(); i++) { ... }; In the past I was (and still am) using macros a lot: loopiv(i, listOfType) { ... }; And I'll be glad to abandon those macros eventually.

Strategic-Goal - Shaders in LW:
It seems as if Shaders in LW are inevitable for several reasons. So they are a somewhere on the imaginary long term todo list and it's probably just a matter of time. The goal is deferred shading because 8 or what not OpenGL Lights are just not enough to even start with - beside sun and moon. I want street lights every 5 meters, I want at least 3 muzzle-flashes per Mech, I want rocket flares, I want explosions and possibly with heat distortions. Same as with OpenAL sound sources: 16 or 32 is ridiculous for a realistic environment - LW is using about 90 right now for a relatively small world - thanks OpenAL-Soft !! Back to shaders: Shaders can improve materials and lighting, too: Infinite procedural detail, material variation, material blending, ambient sky-light, ... Now's the question, where to start? Implement forward shaders first? Or go for deferred shaders directly? Are there preconditions and flows the code needs to follow beforehand?
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Re: Progress

Postby hc » 12 Jun 2011, 14:12

Models now support multiple materials - that is one material per md5mesh/object group of a model.
As of now there are only some predefined materials and names (camo, glass, rubber, steel).
The material textures are procedural 3d/solid textures, as always.
But there aren't fitting material settings yet (shininess, ambient, diffuse) - not even talking about shaders (bumpmap, envmap, ...).

So it does look quite nice but a little flat:

multimat_20110612.png


[Edit: md5mesh here as in mesh in a md5mesh file - one file/model, several meshes, one material per mesh]
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Re: Progress

Postby Skorpio » 12 Jun 2011, 21:34

Cool, I'd really like to see that stuff in-game. Any chance for a new windows version soon? I think qubodup has to record some new videos.
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Re: Progress

Postby hc » 14 Jun 2011, 18:41

I'll see what I can do for a new windows version. ;)
But, well, gameplay hasn't changed a lot, that's a little bit embarrassing :oops:
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Re: Progress

Postby charlie » 15 Jun 2011, 12:32

hc wrote:I'll see what I can do for a new windows version. ;)
But, well, gameplay hasn't changed a lot, that's a little bit embarrassing :oops:

Not at all. Sometimes you have to change things that do not alter gameplay in order to progress a game project. It's a natural part of development.
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Re: Progress

Postby hc » 01 Sep 2011, 18:25

Quick update:
There are updates in the online git-repository - contains misc tunings and the new Thunderbird model.
The tunings are attempts to make mech's more configurable using a key-value-Strings but it's not set in stone yet.
Maybe I'll skip that for a "commandline like" interface or they may happily coexist.
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Re: Progress

Postby charlie » 08 Sep 2011, 22:45

How close are we to a release? I can't compile on my Windows machine (or at least lack the time to organise the tools to do it) and would love to have a play with the latest features with my son.
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Re: Progress

Postby hc » 10 Sep 2011, 15:30

I think it's save to expect a release in late 2011 or the early days of 2012.
That's a very save expectation of course and there may be a release in between.

One target may be the overall configurability - probably just on the source side (vs. mission script files) - to enable other developers (you know who ;) ) to implement mission script files.

Other than that I'd be happy to include one or more models (a turret for example) and another location.

And of course there may be many more subtle or invisible changes.

...and compile a windows binary...
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Re: Progress

Postby charlie » 10 Sep 2011, 16:16

I do think missions will be the key to getting extra interest in the project. If you can build up a series of missions with a bit of storyline, it will really make people want to play.
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Re: Progress

Postby hc » 15 Sep 2011, 21:29

The upcoming release will add more reactivity to the AI: Not only do they attack you if they are shot at but now they start to attack the greatest damager. No more shooting sitting ducks! Overall this change already makes those enemies look smarter and sell their butt more expensive. :x

Of course fine tunings will be necessary and it will open up new ways for players to get around (ab)using ai glitches. :|

ps. a quick reminder: Get your win32 snapshot :o
http://forum.freegamedev.net/viewtopic.php?f=50&p=19923&sid=fde5a0a194e724a301f845f742376f67#p19923
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Re: Progress

Postby hc » 08 Oct 2011, 12:30

I've postponed decissions for new models and I'm currently making some progress on the Landscape part.

Expect more variation:
+ More plant types and variation
+ Tree's finally have a bark texture
+ The ground "noise" texture was replaced by a more detailed one.

Overal this makes a far better landscape, I almost hesitate to release it because it gives food to graphics fanatics. In my opinion the best open source games (== those that survived the initial fancy hype-phase) started without fancy graphics and too fancy ideas but with gameplay and they stayed focussed. So I think graphics shouldn't exaggerate on the game's playability and quality.

As a developer on a long time mission I've got to keep the dramatic curve rising and the expectations reasonably low to keep myself motivated and away from frustrations. It's easier to make good standalone graphics than to let your game mechanics (ai, collisions, interaction, physics, dynamics, managing) work in that world fast and reasonably. In part I've got to addmit I'm giving in on the graphics but I'd like to justify it with variation in this case. :)

Blaim Charlie for those graphical enhancements --> http://forum.freegamedev.net/viewtopic.php?f=50&t=1124 ;)
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Re: Progress

Postby charlie » 08 Oct 2011, 14:28

Imma trouble maker :twisted:
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Re: Progress

Postby hc » 26 Dec 2011, 18:57

Just integrated some more models by nazzyc (besides his gauss turret):
The two barreled turret and his reactor globe.

Being at it I modeled a 6 wheeled gun platform which will be revealed later.
It was a rapid prototyping approach recycling wheels I've modeled before.

Let's see how those models can be utilized.
Now that I've got some time available I've got to pick some raisins to work on.
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Re: Progress

Postby charlie » 26 Dec 2011, 23:46

Sounds good! Release soon? I'd like to try. :)

Release early, release often. ;)
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Re: Progress

Postby hc » 05 Jan 2012, 20:36

I hope to add some gameplay value but I'm afraid I wont again.
Better to release early/often than stick to idealistic goals, isn't it?

A small update to whoever cares:
I've sorted through sounds from freesound.org used by linwarrior
and most of them changed their license from sampling+ to
other sensible Creative-Commons license.
A success of qubodup's lobbying efforts?
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Re: Progress

Postby qubodup » 06 Jan 2012, 02:31

A success of qubodup's lobbying efforts?

Come again? :)
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Re: Progress

Postby hc » 06 Jan 2012, 19:59

Oh, never mind, I thought you would have had your hands in freesound.org promoting CC/-BY/-SA instead of sampling+. :)
Somehow I came to that impression. BTW http://opengameart.org/content/dark-ambience-soundscapes by yewbic is even CC0.
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Re: Progress

Postby charlie » 06 Jan 2012, 20:16

hc wrote:I hope to add some gameplay value but I'm afraid I wont again.
Better to release early/often than stick to idealistic goals, isn't it?


Music to my ears. Never too early to make a release. You can always release then work on your idealistic goals whilst everybody enjoys the eye/ear candy.
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Re: Progress

Postby hc » 09 Feb 2012, 21:32

Finally a property or configuration file for linwarrior.

In the upcomming release there will be a file (as of now "data/base/global.properties")
that lets you configure some environment parameters:

+ The structure of the landscape and its texture - from snow over grass to desert.
+ The amount of vegetation.
+ Clounds, rain and windspeed.

I think that will close the feature list of the next release.
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Re: Progress

Postby hc » 07 May 2012, 19:35

Slow progress is still progress:

+ Added Player mech model to global.properties

And some refactoring progress. LinWarrior has already a long history of evolution:
From blob game objects to game objects aggregated from structures, over objects with components now nearing objects built from components belonging to subsystems. I'm confident that this progression is nearing a point of convergence.
It's not yet in a final state but to give a thought where it's heading.

The idea here is that there are in closed subsystems consisting of components.
Some subsystems can be thought of as minigames or aspects of a whole game or simulation:

- Weapon-Subsystem: Models Targets, Weapons, Weapon- and Target-Computers (aspect: pure targeting and shooting game/sim).
- Physic-Subsystem: Objects that can be collided against and particles that can collide (aspect: pure physics game/sim).
- Trigger-Subsystem: Aleart-Detectors/-Sensors and triggering particles.
- Model-Subsystem: "Small"-Scale graphical objects like the mech model (just visuals, position and dimensions but no physics).
- Mobile-Subsystem: Only one component for base and torso orientation and steering vehicle behavior (aspect: driving/aiming as in physic-less rts tanks).
- More Subsystems: Background (skydome and weather), Landscape (with trees and plants), Mission

Note that this contains redundancy that wasn't not part of the blob game object:
The blob game object position is a target position, a vehicle position, a physics position and a model position.
Therefore Subsystems and Components can be thought of as parallel dimensions of the World-System and game objects.

Subsystems don't know each other but they know and can query the World - the Master-System - which contains and consists of all Subsystems.
Each subsystem implements a common Interface that is implemented by the World-System itself, too.

Eg. the Weapon system doesn't know any other subsystem but has to query for collisions therefore it queries the World which delegates this query to all subsystems and a subsystem may choose to process this query. Note that for example the Landscape system does it's own collision detection and corretion (which as a matter of fact can only be done by the specialised Landscape-Subsystem efficiently - "infinite" landscape).
[The collisions in LinWarrior work by adjusting particle positions therefore stepwise processing is no problem]

Subsystems contain Components (basically just classes) that may interact closely (like Weapon- and Target-Components).
Components of different Subsystems interact by being bound through World-Objects:
The position of a physical particle position can be copied to a model position.
So an Object is what binds behavior of subsystems together.

world - subsystem
| |
object - component
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Re: Progress

Postby Knitter » 07 May 2012, 19:55

Is the git archive in download page updated yet?
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