community project + contest idea

Moderator
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Joined: 2003.10
Post: #16
hytmal Wrote:other than that i'd say that we should force the developer into one image format and one audio format. i have no idea what are good choices for these, given that the end result has to be open source. i usually go with PNG for image assets, myself.

I heartily suggest PNG and Ogg Vorbis. Also allowing JPEG images might be a good idea, because there are some situations where it's more suitable than PNG. If there's any reason to allow uncompressed audio, go with AIFF.

- Alex Diener
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Luminary
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Joined: 2002.04
Post: #17
If we're writing a Mac-only engine, there'd be no reason not to use QuickTime or ImageIO for loading images (and therefore get support for everything under the sun), and AudioFile for loading sounds (and therefore get support for a very wide range of compressed and uncompressed audio formats).

If it's to be cross-platform, then I'd suggest using the http://freeimage.sourceforge.net/ FreeImage library -- it's a lot easier to use than either libpng or libjpeg in isolation, and it supports a few more formats, too.
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Post: #18
I agree with ThemsAllTook.

I'm starting to wonder why I even bother to question the value of PNG/JPEG vs. Quicktime (and whatever universal loader lib you might have). The PNG/JPEG combo seems to have all the answers. Virtually all software nowadays handles both of those formats without much trouble, and it's just a killer combo for all the stuff I've tried over the years. I think the primary path should be PNG/JPEG, but Quicktime is easy to include in a very small amount of code as well, so it can be added for robustness alongside.

Also, I second the "ditch GLUT/SDL/ExistingLib" idea. It just isn't all that difficult for many of us here to code a nice backend using Cocoa, and have far more flexibility and power because of it.

And more, for audio there should be four formats available. WAV, AIFF, Ogg Vorbis, and MP3. MP3 can only be made available through Quicktime because of licensing, but it is a convenient format for most people. WAV and AIFF are great for short sounds like gunshots since compressing them is usually a futile effort because of their shortness, and they're easy to export from all existing software (not recommended for music tracks of course). Ogg Vorbis is *the* way to go for music tracks, like MP3 is, except it's licensing fee free.

The best all-around combo IMHO is PNG/JPG/Ogg Vorbis for media, with a Cocoa backend to interface with OS X and a C public API for the engine. The only thing that I might suggest should be offered in two flavors would be a math library - one version in C and one version in C++ might be handy.

Other than that, the only thing I would shout out is, "Less is more!". Keep it simple. Maybe a project like this should be capped at 10k lines of code? I know many people would argue with that statement, but beginners have a tendency not to be able to easily consume mass amounts of code early on. OTOH, it could also be developed as a "black-box" library with no code cap and no remorse, just presenting simple functionality, but the underside could be wild and wooly.

Whatever, just some ideas from the Friday night pint. Wacko
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Apprentice
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Joined: 2005.08
Post: #19
This is a sad day, my first post and guess what? I disagree with everyone out there ...

We do not need to write just another (simplier or not) support library, API, Engine or the like but rather create knowledge.
Let me explain: if I use a library/Engine which automatically handles and hides everything I will almost certainly learn nothing. Why don't we build a set of libraries, one for each aspect of game programming USING our beloved os instead of external resources? I mean, if I ask you:
How do I perform sound mixing with CoreAudio?
How do I Poll a Joystick with HID Manager?
I Fear that even Apple could not answer these questions, given the documentation available. Now, If we can build a CoreAudio Sound Mixer, a CoreAudio streamer, a HID Manager joystick reader, a CoreGraphics blitter, ... keeping them simple, separate and documented, the true beginner would have a really nice reference, sample code and a fully functional set of libraries. Need something more advanced? You have the code, go On.

Best regards,
Claudio "Oblivion" Russo
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Apprentice
Posts: 18
Joined: 2004.01
Post: #20
I agree with most of what you say, Oblivion. However, I think that if we combine the elements you mentioned into one product, that it would be really great, and really show newbies how to correctly structure their OWN engines in their future projects. if all we give them is good sample code, well then they have that, but they still have a lot of work to do, to put it all together. i still think your idea is a very good one, i'll say that.

to everyone else, the idea here is that people should be able to actually look at the source code! so no black boxes! that would defeat the purpose, really.

i'd say the only reason the above wouldn't work in the end is that we want to be able to base a contest off of this, and therefore we need to give people a whole base to work from, not just a bunch of disconnected parts.

-- david
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Sage
Posts: 1,066
Joined: 2004.07
Post: #21
I'm a little late coming, but I love this idea.

Let me try and resurrect this thread because I'd like to see this happen. I can do some Objective-C (Cocoa) as well as C. I'm learning tons of stuff and know basic OpenGL (and some not so basic) techniques. Is that what we're going to use? I'd figure as much.

Personally I think a project like this would be the best for new comers. Even I, having only made games using Cocoa with Interface Builder, still have a basic view on engines, how they are structured, and how they do what they do.

As far as file types, why limit it? I think OSC has a point that if it's based on Cocoa (therefore relies on Mac OS X) let's just use Quicktime and such to get lots of file types. Sure everyone should use PNG or JPG for pretty much everything, but that's no excuse to make them use them.

I'm willing to help out if this project ever gets off the ground. Just let me know. I'm logged onto AIM 95% of the day so you can leave me a message there. Or email. Or post here. Or PM. Smile
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Member
Posts: 185
Joined: 2005.02
Post: #22
why not just write it in c with openGL and openAL ? aren't SDL and GLUT and all the rest of those just shortcuts?
i really want to get into making games but i have no clue how to.
even psuedo code would help me a ton. it would show me what i need to learn.
EDIT: never mind, now that I am learning openGL i realize that GLUT would definately be needed. Smile
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Member
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Post: #23
Is this going anywhere or is the idea dead?
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Apprentice
Posts: 19
Joined: 2005.07
Post: #24
What about for people who can't do programing and all that stuff?
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DoG
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Post: #25
This kinda project is doomed because there is no way in hell you can get more than 3 people to agree on anything. I tried myself. It can only work if somebody just starts it, and hopefully other people join in if they like what they see.
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Sage
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Joined: 2004.07
Post: #26
Maybe instead of trying to write the über-community-engine, maybe some people could set up a poll and decide on a specific game to make. Then go for it. Have some people take charge and others will join. Start with maybe a sidescroller. I remember that the Inkubator project was about to do a sidescroller when I first started at this forum, but that never took off either.
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Luminary
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Joined: 2002.04
Post: #27
The Hooptie project is proof that very few people will contribute any worthwhile amount of help... Mark Pazolli ended up doing 90+% of the programming, and DaFalcon ended up doing 90+% of the art... and neither of them were the target audience for the project.

My advice is, if you want to do something, do it. If you want help, ask... but don't expect to receive any Rasp
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