Sunday, September 02, 2007

status update

Being back in Romania looks to have left me with less free time that I have wished. After more than 2 months, I have wrote no new line on my game engine. I hope that this will change in the future and I will continue it one day. But for now, I can make no promises.

Thursday, June 14, 2007

back to ro

Back to Romania and still working for Motorola.

No coding on the isohexengine these past weeks and none in the near future, as for the moment I'm not in the mood.

Monday, May 28, 2007

development status

Cristina, my girlfriend, had come to Denmark. Therefore, I wasn't able to do any new work on IsohexEngine :)

She will return to Romania on 29th May, but then I will be entering my last week in Denmark and have to start to prepare for my own return.

This means that development will stall a little these next weeks. But don't worry, I will not abandon it :)

As a side note, just before Cristina arrived, I have started looking into Guichan and how it can integrate in my current framework. The good news is that it can be done and this will be my next top priority: get some simple UI for the current renderer demo application.

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Saturday, May 12, 2007

the renderer is here

After so many delays, the renderer has arrived in all its glory :)

There are things that can be improved, as always, but the renderer is working and my fps counter is showing a drastic improvement: it jumped from 36 to 64-70 fps under X and it even shows 85-100 fps when run in a normal terminal console.

Of course, these results have to taken with a grain of salt. Nevertheless, they show a clear improvement :)

Thursday, May 10, 2007

new isohexengine upload

New isohexengine for available for take. The Renderer is still not working and this upload is more to show you the direction the code is taking and that the development is still going on, even if at a slow step :)

Saturday, May 05, 2007

Monday, April 30, 2007

new isohexengine upload

After a lot of delay, a new isohexengine has finally arrived.

The code was extensively refactored, but little extra new functionality was added. To my shame, the smart renderer is still not finished and most of the refactoring consisted in code reorganizing, writing a code conventions and trying to adhere to it and some API changes that I hope simplifies the code you have to write to make apps using isohexengine (like the code from src/examples).

Here are some new screenshots. I've changed a bit the src/examples/trees so that it can display what should be plotted, if not clipped by the output window. To hide or show this, simply press the d key.

The grass and the trees use different screen iterators:
  • the grass uses a default iterator, as one grass tile does not overlap over the neighboring ones
  • the trees use an extended iterator, that extends a bit to the left, right and bottom of the output window; this was done so that trees don't pop up unexpectedly in the output window

Wednesday, April 25, 2007

rediscovering asciidoc

Good to look over your old junk stuff, from time to time ;)

While trying to free some more space on my laptop, I have came upon some older docs I have written an year or two ago, when I was looking for tools to help in my own private development.

One of those was asciidoc, a nice system that can create PDF, HTML and XML from a wiki like TXT file.

When I get into another procrastination mood, I'll probably move isohexengine to using asciidoc instead of LyX. Lyx is nice, but asciidoc is even better for what I need and it is soo easy to automate it.

isohex status

I've been busy lately with refactoring the code.

After finishing the first version of the code conventions (everybody has one, so why isohexengine having one, right?), I've started applying it to the code. This required rewriting most of the code and, even though most of this was mostly moving the code around, creating new namespaces, reindenting and renaming data members, it still got more than I have expected.

But the changes are almost done, so I will be soon able to concentrate on new things again. And the code looks a bit better and has a bit more doxygen comments.

Expect a new isohexengine in a week or so :)

removing isohex from Google Code

The inevitable is happening: as the project is hosted on SourceForge now, I've decided to remove the old code repository from Google Code.

I'll not reupload older versions of isohexengine to SourceForge. What would be the point, anyway, as the latest version is already on SourceForge?

Saturday, April 07, 2007

isohexengine hosted on sourceforge

I've finally got the approval for isohexengine on sourceforge and I've already started moving the files from GoogleCode to SourceForge.

As there is not much point in making a web site for isohex at this moment, I'll continue posting the news and screenshots here.

Monday, April 02, 2007

code conventions

Looks like I try every excuse not to do the renderer :) Now I've started writing a code convention document for the isohex engine.

In the sparse time I've got between searching for a nice editing tool (I'll probably settle for Lyx) and reading the The Heritage of Shannara, I was able to start understanding how mockpp works and how I can use it. The problem is that I've also discovered that I want to do some refactoring on the existing classes and this will delay things even more...

Saturday, March 31, 2007

debian packages for mockpp

As promised, I have made the packages for mockpp available. They are hosted on Google Code, too. I have uploaded both the binary (the .deb files) and the source files (the .dsc, .diff.gz and .orig.tar.gz).

I have also applied for a new project on sourceforge to host isohexengine. Google code was nice for a fast start, but it is quite limited, when compared to sourceforge.

Once the project is approved, I'll move all the code there.

Friday, March 30, 2007

mockpp: mock objects for c++

While working on the Renderer class and making my unit-tests, I have realized that it would much easier to test it with the help of a Mock class. Searching wikipedia and the net took me to the Mock Objects for C++. To my disappointment, it is not yet in Debian, so I had to make my own packages for it. I'll try to post them here, as somebody else might find them useful.

This morning I've found another guy that posted his own mockpp deb package. If you are too impatient and don't want to wait for my packages, fill free to use those :)

We should probably unite our forces and submit the package to Debian, to be properly incorporated in the distro.

Monday, March 26, 2007

fbcon and indexed images

No code snapshot today, as this weekend was not as productive as the past one. Still, I've been able to manage a couple of things.

The coolest one was my discovery that my code can run in the console. I haven't expect that. I knew SDL is cross-platform and this is why I've decided using it, but I haven't been aware I can run SDL apps from the console, without any change at all. After some fiddling with the udev so that I could use the mouse as a normal user, I am now able to run my sample apps from X or from the console. DirectFB doesn't work that great, but fbcon is alright. I will have to try it on my desktop when I have the chance, to see both the performance under X and on the console.

Another good thing that I was able to do was making my TileSet class work with any color depth, including with indexed palettes. This was one thing I haven't done properly from the start and it was nagging me.

I've also started working on the Renderer class. Hopefully, it will be ready by week's end. I was a bit afraid of this, but after changing the Scroller class a bit and thinking a bit more before starting to code, the piece started to fall in their places :)

Monday, March 19, 2007

a gui for my isohex engine

I was thinking to make a level editor. This will definitely need some sort of GUI, but working on the iso engine poses already enough challenges to me and I think that making a GUI framework from ground-up is not worth it, if there are better options available.

After wasting most of the last Saturday trying to make SDL render into a GTK widget, I realized that that was not the way I should go. Even though I've managed to get something working in the end, I now think it is better to have the GUI inside SDL, not outside it, as a GTK solution would do it.

Some queries with apt-cache returned guichan and paragui as the possible candidates for what I had in mind. Of the two, guichan looks to be only one that is still actively developed, so I will probably end up using it.


Another week-end, another piece of code. I am now wadding through chapter 17: the clipping is done and I'm preparing to start wrestling with the renderer. It should limit even further the blittings, thus increasing the fps. According to the author, this is the most complicated piece of code from the whole book.

You can also see my lousy FPS counter in action. The FPS are quite low, but everything is done using only software rendering on my old Amilo laptop, so I find it acceptable, for now. Hopefully, those numbers will increase, at least till I start adding the AI ;)

The code, as always, is on google code.

Wednesday, March 14, 2007

plot only visible tiles

I have uploaded a new snapshot of the code. No pictures this time.

The new code allows you to limit the tiles that are plotted on the screen. The algorithm is not overly optimized yet, but the resulting code is easy to use. It allows you to plot only what's visible on the screen. You can also specify an additional 'border', so that you don't have object magically pop-in or pop-out when you scroll.

I have also a hard time comparing the current performance with what I had before, as I currently use my old laptop for development. The performances are not great at this time (only 10-12 FPS on my laptop, according to my home-made FPS counter), but this will hopefully change in the future.

Tuesday, March 13, 2007

some old photos

Last week I have finally managed to print some of my old photos. Some of them were pretty nice, so I've decided to share them :)

Saturday, March 03, 2007

hexagonal maps

After some struggle with my own mistakes, I have managed to implement also the hexagonal maps. And the changes were unexpectedly few!

As always, check google code for the latest snapshot.

isometric slide map

isometric staggered map

isometric diamond map

hexagonal slide map

hexagonal staggered map

hexagonal diamond map

Friday, March 02, 2007


Uploaded a new snapshot of the IsoHex Engine. This one should have all the graphics that I've used to make those screenshots. It should also contain all the default bitmaps used by the various test programs.

Thursday, March 01, 2007

red knight has arrived

Added a small red knight. Thought it looks better than the old cursor :)

Wednesday, February 28, 2007

Isometric tile engine

I have finally started following my long neglected dream: making games.

My passion is for RPG type of games. Even if I like a lot games like Oblivion and Gothic, I am also aware that a single person or even a small team of developers have a low chance to create something like that in a reasonable amount of time.

But I also love games like Fallout and Arcanum and I believe these kind of games are a bit easier to do, so I have decided to start with learning how create isometric games.

Focus on SDL and Isometric Game Programming with DirectX 7.0 were invaluable in helping me to get started from somewhere. It is not very much, but I can already use the code to display a simple isometric map, pan over it and select the locations with the cursor. Cool :)

The trees are from Reiner's site. Thanks Reiner :)

I have started the isohexengine project on Google Code site and posted a snapshot of the code there.