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Topics - Game_boy

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General ENIGMA / Recodes
« on: July 25, 2012, 10:51:24 am »
EDIT: Josh, I made this post in nonsense for a reason. Don't make it its own thread. It's also out of context now because I was partly responding to cheeseboy's style of posting. This wasn't an "attention forums" kind of post, it was deliberately offhand.

I was going to post something but I'll just quote myself from March, because looks like nothing's changed.

While being as aggressive as cheeseboy is pointless (the devs are mostly working on this for themselves rather than to an end goal), have you considered scaling back your aspirations? That is, not making something infinitely flexible or completely modular, and just focus on delivering, say, a 90% clone of GM6 by some not too distant time in the future.

Since then you have thrown out a couple more major systems with the promise of a ground-up rewrite. That's fine in a world with infinite time and fixed targets, but it is the reason why no functional version has been released. And by functional, I mean  the user don't have to understand how compilers and programming work to be able to i) run Enigma on their platform and ii) make a simple game by opening the GM6 file plus no more than minor changes.

I think it's time to admit you will not be delivering this with the original goals you posted on 64digits. I'm cool with that, I can see it's a hobby project and you enjoy all these rewrites and features, and I can see there are setbacks from intermittent commitment from all the devs.

If you still believe otherwise, my suggestion is a feature freeze. Leave ever major system exactly as it stands and work towards a finite feature list.

Off-Topic / David Cameron is the new UK Prime Minister
« on: May 11, 2010, 03:58:15 pm »

It will likely be a Conservative-Liberal Democrat coalition government.

Don't worry, the Conservatives are to the left of the Democrats on many issues despite their name (like socialised medicine) and the Liberal Democrats would probably be considered loony communists in the US. The outgoing Labour government couldn't really campaign on change given they've had 13 years in power.

I voted for the first time this election, and I'm happy this result is now confirmed. Cameron can start to fix our national debt now.

Issues Help Desk / Map loading
« on: April 07, 2010, 07:59:39 am »
This is for a GM project of mine, a Pokémon clone.

It's stalled because the map loading is extremely slow and my attempts to optimise it fail.

The map data is currently made by an external level editor (also mine) and written to a file using a DLL as bytes representing kinds of tiles and collision state (walk-through or not) for each 16x16 square. The world map is a collection of 32x32 of these squares as a 'level', and then these levels are dynamically loaded as you walk around so there is a seamless world but it only has loaded the level you're on and the four adjacent levels at any one instant.

It currently reads the bytes from the file using a DLL line-by-line and creates their associated tiles when it's loaded a line of data. When you're no longer adjacent to a level it discards that data and the objects/tiles belongng to it. If it hasn't fully loaded a level by the time you reach the boundary then the game pauses until it has so that you never see the unloaded levels.

I currently get fractions of an FPS when walking around.

So, in i) GM and ii) Enigma, what would be a better way of handling map data? I can modify the level editor's output and the game's handling of those files however is necessary, and I care only about speed and that the player never sees unloaded data.


Off-Topic / They killed GNOME
« on: October 04, 2009, 04:54:46 am »

They got rid of the Applications/Places/System menu in GNOME 3. They replaced it with a stupid launcher mashup thing which is crowded and complicated. I'm not a "power user" - I hate launchers and never used Gnome-Do or similar. I just liked that programs were under Applications, files were under Places and settings were under System. They also killed the bottom taskbar, I hope I don't have to go onto the mashup thing just to switch windows.

Because of how Linux works, if you don't upgrade to the new version you'll find it hard get new versions of any other app after a while, such as Firefox or OpenOffice. I don't like the 'feel' of KDE (or Win7, it's the same not-quite-right feeling) so I can't exactly switch to Kubuntu. Maybe I'm stuck with 9.10 [which is great, by the way] and Vista.

Issues Help Desk / Suggest image editor?
« on: August 26, 2009, 06:02:31 am »
What Linux image editor would you suggest using with Enigma/LGM? Since LGM doesn't have an image editor (I think) and MS Paint isn't available, and GIMP etc. are far too complex for sprite-based games, there isn't an obvious replacement.

General ENIGMA / Game Maker 8
« on: July 20, 2009, 01:58:36 am »
So, there's a GM8 beta now. Will ENIGMA have some of this? Most of it's a bit pointless and just shortcuts what you could already do with code (alpha channel, trigger events) but the new sprite and code editors are much better.

What is New
Version 8.0 of Game Maker has a large number of improvements over version 7.0. Below the most important changes are described.

Text splash screens can no longer show images. However, web splash screens have been added that can show full html documents with images, etc.

A number of changes have been made to the functions related to sprite and background resources. This is due to the fact that Game Maker uses a completely new mechanism for these resources. If your game uses a lot of calls to functions that load or save image resources on the fly you are strongly recommended to keep using the old version 7.0 for that game.

Game Maker now default shows a News page when it is started. Here new version will be announced, new resources will be indicated, there is information about competition, and game design tips and tricks. News is shown only once a day. In the Pro Edition this can be switched off. You can always access the news through the Help menu and you are encouraged to regularly check the news for important information about Game Maker.

Game Maker now has a standard built-in tutorial for beginners. It is shown in a panel at the right of the screen. Experienced users can indicate that they do not want to see the tutorial anymore. To accommodate for the tutorial panel, Game Maker is now default started in full screen mode. It does however remember its settings so changing it once to windowed mode will from that moment on start it in that mode.

Alpha-blended backgrounds and sprites
The new version Game Maker uses backgrounds and sprites with alpha (transparency) channels. This makes it possible to create and use much nicer sprites. PNG files with such information are now correctly loaded. The sprite and image editor have been completely rewritten, including many new drawing options and effects. A new sprite file selector was added that shows the animations in the sprites. Also we bundle a large number of high-quality sprites with Game Maker that you can use for free in your games.

Enhanced collision checking
You now have more collision checking options. For example, you can indicate that collisions should be with an enclosed disk and you can enlarge and reduce the collision mask. The sub-image of the sprite can have a combined mask and you can set the dependence on the alpha transparency value.

Splash screens
A new function splash_show_web(url,delay) has been added that can be used to show web pages as splash screens. You can also use local html pages for this. This allows for a powerful mechanism to e.g. create help pages. A close button is added to the splash screens. Also a number of new actions have been added to show the different types of splash pages and to change splash settings. (The old Show Video and Webpage actions have been removes as the new actions include them. They will though still work in old games.)

Trigger events
A new type of event has been introduced: Trigger events. Trigger events you can specify yourself. You give them a name and a condition, written in GML. After this they can be used in all objects, just like other events. With this you can easily extend the functionality of Game Maker.

Time lines
The timelines have been extended. The property form has additional buttons to e.g. spread out the moments and to delete or duplicate ranges of moments. Timelines can now be paused and restarted and they can even be played backwards. Also they can now loop automatically.

Importing and exporting resources
The possibility to merge games has been replaced by a much more extensive system to import and export resources. The user can indicate which resources to export to a file (.gmres). Next they can be imported in a different game. In principle only one resource can exist for each name. When there is a name conflict when importing the use can specify to keep the original, replace anyway, take the one that is most recently changed, or keep both (not recommended). To be able to do the third option, all resources now keep track of when they were last changed.

Rewritten script and code editor
The built-in script/code editor has been completely rewritten, making it a lot easier to write code. For example there is pop-up function name completion, argument help, matching brackets, improved color coding, line numbers, on-the-fly error checking, code snippets, and a sophisticated find and replace functionality.

Other changes
There are a number of other changes and additions. Here are some of the important ones.

Constants can now be defined in their own form (rather than through the Global Game Settings). As a result they can remain visible while you are e.g. writing scripts. You can also load and save the constants to text files.
Also included files are no longer shown in the Global Game Settings but in their own form.
The loading time for games has been considerably improved. Also when running a stand-alone game.
Many small visual improvements
Added function random_range(x1,x2), irandom(x), and irandom_range(x1,x2). The latter do give integer results and can include x or x2.
There is now a game setting to disallow screensavers or powersaving options (sleep, hybernate) while the game is running (default disallowed).

Off-Topic / Metroid: Other M
« on: June 04, 2009, 01:35:46 pm »
Nintendo's E3 was great for fans like me. Golden Sun DS, a New Super Mario Bros. for the Wii and Super Mario Galaxy 2.

But the best announcement was a new Metroid for the Wii called Other M. The trailer was awesome and I can't wait.

...just posting because Metroid is my favourite game series.

Off-Topic / Yoyo fails
« on: February 03, 2009, 03:36:38 pm »

Yoyo has been working since Jan 2007, and what have they done in that time? A substantial price increase.

They must have have been working on GM8, you say?

Sandy: "We’re not struggling at all, quite the opposite. We will hopefully start work on GM8 very shortly and the Apple Mac version is close to it’s second beta release"

Great, a second beta version for a PORT? After 2 years of full development time? And GM8 isn't even started yet?

General ENIGMA / How is development going?
« on: September 21, 2008, 10:59:28 am »
How is ENIGMA progressing? I'm not looking for a release timeframe; I just want to know that development is continuing and that eventually something new will be posted on the front page. Also, will there be a Linux build of R3 soon?

General ENIGMA / Discussion of "No subject required"
« on: August 02, 2008, 05:54:18 am »
I am very, very impressed. ENIGMA looks much more ready for public release than r1 and r2, and appears to have most of the basic functions done so people can make usable games rather than simple proof-of-concept binaries. The speed-up from GM to ENIGMA is excellent, but even more impressive is ENIGMA to C++. Now we can use basic C++ to speed up critical parts of our Game Maker applications.

I see a real need for a 'stepping-stone' between GM and C++. Since we can learn C++ piecemeal (like how in the beginning we put sections of GM code in to enhance our D&D GM games), for some users ENIGMA might go from being a better GM-compatible IDE to being C++ with a useful, graphical standard library. The barrier to entry of C++ was always high, and it was hard to go from GM to C++; I believe ENIGMA can help change that.

Plus, we have a release date! What could be better news?

General ENIGMA / What's the long-term plan for ENIGMA?
« on: July 05, 2008, 11:32:20 am »
I have a few questions about the long-term plans for ENIGMA.

Is there a hypothetical release where you will declare feature parity with Game Maker, or is compatibility incidental? Would this be declared '1.0', or are there other big goals?

After such a milestone is achieved, to what extent do you plan to add new functionality to Game Maker?

Is LGM likely to be a permanent GUI, or are there problems with this?

General ENIGMA / We need a standard graphical API
« on: May 10, 2008, 09:16:48 am »
ENIGMA is cross-platform, and fast.

For these reasons, big game and application projects can be feasibly created with ENIGMA, unlike Game Maker. To produce any professional application and some types of game, graphical widgets such as scrollbars, menubars, buttons and text boxes are needed.

Often in Game Maker, WinAPI bindings were used. This was a bad idea because:

- WinAPI functions were not consistent with other GML functions, leading to poor and unintuitive binding conventions
- Breakage due to it being a one-person project with little testing
- WinAPI is ugly and looks bad next to well-designed games/applications
- WinAPI has ugly code since it has to maintain backwards compatibility with obsolete applications from Windows 3.x (from 1990!)
- WinAPI sucks in general next to modern toolkits like Cocoa, GTK and Qt

As ENIGMA is cross-platform, WinAPI bindings are unsuitable anyway. With a new era of fast, cross-platform ENIGMA games and applications in mind, we need a standard graphical API that is:

- Fast (that means C++)
- Pretty but functional
- Cross-platform, i.e. consistent on all platforms
- Is easy to use for someone used to GML
- Is easy to use for someone used to C++
- Integrates well with the existing ENIGMA code
- Is standard, i.e. will be used by many people to provide consistency: parallel, redundant development is inefficient
- Is free software, preferably of the same license as ENIGMA

The best way to fulfil most of these criteria is to have a community-developed standard graphical API to be distributed either in ENIGMA or alongside it on the website. I am unable to help because I cannot code in C++, but I am willing to suggest ideas, test, or contribute in some other way if possible.

Most of all, it will give ENIGMA something unique that is a real asset that GM doesn't have and emphasises ENIGMA's advantages over GM.

General ENIGMA / What's the status of a potential Linux build?
« on: April 08, 2008, 07:41:52 am »
Approximately when will a Linux port of ENIGMA be released?

How complete will the port be? Obviously the builder interface will be the same due to it being in Java, but:

a) Is it a goal that all GML functions will look and act exactly, pixel-for-pixel, like they do on the Windows version?
b) Since ENIGMA is compiled, obviously games will not be immediately cross platform. Will you be able to cross-compile for the different platforms and produce different binaries that can be posted?
c) Will the native graphics layer(s) be used on Linux to provide seamless window manager integration? Will GTK or Qt be exposed within ENIGMA to create native-looking applications?
d) Will the native sound layer(s) be used? Will this be exposed within ENIGMA to create native-looking applications?
e) Will the native input layer(s) be used? Will this be exposed within ENIGMA to create native-looking applications?
f) Will a potential build be 'certified' for particular distributions, and will DEB, RPM or other packages be available? How easy will it be to compile ENIGMA for non-binary-compatible Linux distributions? Will games produced by ENIGMA run on all or just some Linux distributions?
g) How will various builds of games for platforms be shown on the ENIGMA community game database?

General ENIGMA / This program is everything I could ever want
« on: April 05, 2008, 10:40:34 am »
I want to be a "real" programmer, and, having found Game Maker very easy to learn (but restrictive) I had hit a brick wall with attempting to learn C, C++ or Java. My absolute dream program would be:

1. As easy to learn as Game Maker, with default functions that are comprehensive and easy to set up and use OOP.
2. Takes C++ since it is the most common language in use
3. Faster than Game Maker
4. IDE that "just works" with no dependencies
5. Interface looks like Game Maker
6. Free as in money
7. Free as in freedom
8. Runs on Linux so I can delete Windows permanently.

ENIGMA seems to do all of these things perfectly, and Game Maker only does two; what's more, YoYo Games are intent on increasing the cost, DRM and restrictive licensing on Game Maker for no apparent benefit. When it is completed (and I realise that will take some time) ENIGMA will be the most awesome thing ever to happen to a PC.

Also, Hi. I'm new.

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