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#4536645 - 09/11/20 04:38 PM Re: 70 weeks of intense self-learning [Re: MarkG]  
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No problem, mikew. And I wouldn't mess with Blitz3D until my upcoming 'proof of concept'. smile

BTW, I'm always on the lookout for a modern replacement, I just don't care for today's heavy middleware drag-and-drop/point-and-click GUIs. Some game engines try to eliminate coding altogether! I want to manually write every line of code in my game (sans the built-in functions that make life easier, starting with initializing the graphics card and setting resolution...I'm done with registers/stack and interrupts). And I want that code to be easily portable to C++ and IMO, this is where the Blitz Basic language and compilers shine.

So my new love for Blitz3D is knowing now how easily I can leave it if I decide later to port to something else. I *hate* being locked in to anything, a lesson I learned years ago with VB6.



The rusty wire that holds the cork that keeps the anger in
Gives way and suddenly it’s day again
The sun is in the east
Even though the day is done
Two suns in the sunset, hmph
Could be the human race is run
Inline advert (2nd and 3rd post)

#4536681 - 09/11/20 08:10 PM Re: 70 weeks of intense self-learning [Re: MarkG]  
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Blitz3D looks as good as anything if it builds on your previous experience with Blitz Basic and VB.

I have this dilemma myself, where there it feels like there is always something better just around the corner. smile

It depends what your interests are really. We're still playing around with the TFX series over at Combatsim, and Krycztij's 'TFXplorer' (krishty.com) is an excellent example of what can be done from the ground up just using the Win32 API and the existing TFX dataset.

For open source SW, I'd be looking at the following:
For avoiding the lowest level stuff, then SDL (libsdl.org) can handle the interface to the hardware, but after that you're on your own.

Higher up, you have things like 'Openscenegraph' (openscenegraph.org) to help with displaying your world.

Higher up still, you have the full game engines. From my point of view 'Godot' (godotengine.org), 'Panda3D' (panda3d.org) and 'Castle Game Engine' (castle-engine.io) look the most interesting. The latter uses Object Pascal which is a bit less scary than C++ IMHO. smile
I haven't done any more than download and run the examples for each of these as my C++ skills are still somewhat lacking.
Any day now, I'm going to properly learn C++

I'd avoid Unity and Unreal if you want to avoid lock in...

#4536720 - 09/12/20 06:22 AM Re: 70 weeks of intense self-learning [Re: MarkG]  
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Good advice, Mike.

What worries me about Unity is discussions like this one (started yesterday)...
https://forum.unity.com/threads/any...ther-engine-only-to-return-later.967983/

Could mainly be venting, or just grass being greener elsewhere? But I was surprised to see the moderator hippocoder abandon Unity for Unreal. BTW, hippocoder wrote the Blitz3D water demo on the previous page.

++++++++++

I understand that the hardest part of making a game (besides decent AI) is actually finishing it! I'm not one to chase technology, and I believe that the Blitz3D source code (for the once commercial product [IDE/compiler], not the SDK which I've never found) is in good hands for at least keeping it chugging along in current Windows. Besides all that 64-bit and Linux jazz, they do occasionally fix small issues that pop up, like the option of removing DirectPlay from the compiler so that a game doesn't complain about not finding it in Win10. They also keep the source code project current to the latest VS C++ (was originally VC++6).

Heck, I love that I can have nice weather effects like lightning strikes, rain and snow, but I won't be coming anywhere close to pushing the limits of the engine or DX7. My working resolution is only 640x480 (when I'm finished I might bump it up to 800x600 if I can keep the final installation package under 10MB, sans a PDF Manual). I want my game to look like it would be a great way to showcase the capabilities of the original 3dfx Voodoo bypass card (but with 32-bit color). I might even fake the card's switchover click with a nostalgic sound effect. biggrin

C/C++ is a must for old textbook support. Even my larger Game AI book, which uses pseudo-code in the printed material, includes only C++ code examples on the CD. BTW, my early-to-mid-90's books make plenty of references to 80's pop culture which has been awesome to me, also constantly mentioning flight sims since they were so popular at the time. biggrin

Nov. 1st the real fun begins!



The rusty wire that holds the cork that keeps the anger in
Gives way and suddenly it’s day again
The sun is in the east
Even though the day is done
Two suns in the sunset, hmph
Could be the human race is run
#4536741 - 09/12/20 03:11 PM Re: 70 weeks of intense self-learning [Re: MarkG]  
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mikew, one more thing. smile

My dream game engine would be...

I obviously like Blitz Basic, Mark Sibly's hybrid C/BASIC language/compiler for Amiga (ported to Windows), but I want it for DOS. What I *really* want is a complete all-inclusive (editors and modelers) comprehensive game dev studio that makes developing DOS games as easy as Blitz3D does for Windows, with at least 640x480 3D hardware acceleration (like DOS versions of EF2000 [640x400]). How far can you push SVGA+ graphics in DOS? Was 800x600 or even 1024x768 possible? I know only of the video modes of the VGA, and I don't know how EF2000 supported SVGA cards in DOS, even the non-accelerated versions.

Why DOS? Infinite lifespan. So much Windows software fails over time and technology (not to mention DRM), whereas DOS emulation is here to stay. 30 years from now (assuming I'm still around), I have no doubt that whatever OS I'm using (even if it's not Windows), I'll get in the occasional game of Descent or Links 386. smile

Last edited by MarkG; 09/12/20 03:20 PM.


The rusty wire that holds the cork that keeps the anger in
Gives way and suddenly it’s day again
The sun is in the east
Even though the day is done
Two suns in the sunset, hmph
Could be the human race is run
#4536753 - 09/12/20 05:34 PM Re: 70 weeks of intense self-learning [Re: MarkG]  
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I think VESA tried to standardize SVGA somewhat, but I'm not sure how that relates to DOS.

At least with DOS programs that use 3dFX, we can cheat and intercept the Glide commands that would normally be sent over the PCI bus, then use a Glide wrapper to scale the vertices up to the resolution of our modern monitors.
If the frame buffer has already been produced by the DOS program, all we can do is stretch it which doesn't look nearly as good.

As Dosbox is open source, and with an open source compiler, it should be possible to make up your own video modes if you produced a DOS program now.
...as a thought experiment at least. smile

#4536794 - 09/13/20 12:20 AM Re: 70 weeks of intense self-learning [Re: MarkG]  
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Well, now you're just putting bad ideas in my head! smile

I know I've been spinning my wheels for about the last 10 years, but during that time I've been collecting everything I could on retro game development. Included in my massive archives (which I'll be pulling out in November) are the Glide Programmer's Guide and References, along with the specs of the 3dfx/Voodoo cards. Man, you have me dreaming BIG now! I think I'm going to reference the 3dfx requirements for my game.

BTW, much of my motivation comes from the eras involved:

[X] F-19 Scenarios: Mid-80's.
[X] PC Technology: Y2K.
[X] PC Tech Simulated: Mid-90's.

It all checks out! Now if you will excuse me, I have to get back to some Epic Pinball...

Attached Files Apogee.jpgPinball.jpg


The rusty wire that holds the cork that keeps the anger in
Gives way and suddenly it’s day again
The sun is in the east
Even though the day is done
Two suns in the sunset, hmph
Could be the human race is run
#4536965 - 09/14/20 02:35 PM Re: 70 weeks of intense self-learning [Re: MarkG]  
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I'm on day 43 of my last 90, and I just finished my final book on C, now starting with C++ (although my last C book included an intermediate introduction to C++).

The book was "C by Dissection" which turned out to be mostly a rewrite of "A Book on C" by the same authors. Thus I've scratched the latter off my listings as well as a couple of others for the same reason. I purchased most of these books at my local Goodwill (~$1.00/book) or at the annual LSU book fair, not always noticing duplicates with different covers or even different names.

Anyway, I was glad to come across "C++ by Dissection" online, which I'll cover after my Dummies books (don't discount the Dummies books as good intros to difficult studies smile ).

You can find the PDF here...
https://7chan.org/pr/src/C++_By_Dissection_(2002).pdf

With possible source code (I haven't looked closely at it yet)...
https://users.soe.ucsc.edu/~pohl/code.htm




The rusty wire that holds the cork that keeps the anger in
Gives way and suddenly it’s day again
The sun is in the east
Even though the day is done
Two suns in the sunset, hmph
Could be the human race is run
#4537697 - 09/19/20 02:40 PM Re: 70 weeks of intense self-learning [Re: MarkG]  
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Don't want to distract you too much from your studies, but I've been playing around with 3dFX SDKs and found that the examples in the v2.1.1 SDK build fine with Open Watcom 1.9.
The first link here is the one i've been using:
https://3dfxarchive.com/reference.htm

#4537772 - 09/20/20 01:43 AM Re: 70 weeks of intense self-learning [Re: MarkG]  
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Yup, that is THE link for 3dfx goodies, and where I found my stuff years ago!

I'm going to re-explore all of my options in November. Thanks for the heads up with 3dfx Watcom success.



The rusty wire that holds the cork that keeps the anger in
Gives way and suddenly it’s day again
The sun is in the east
Even though the day is done
Two suns in the sunset, hmph
Could be the human race is run
#4537782 - 09/20/20 03:37 AM Re: 70 weeks of intense self-learning [Re: MarkG]  
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3Dfx? You mean the video card company that went under 19 years ago?


“Whoever fights monsters should see to it that in the process he does not become a monster. And if you gaze long enough into an abyss, the abyss will gaze back into you.”
#4537785 - 09/20/20 04:12 AM Re: 70 weeks of intense self-learning [Re: PanzerMeyer]  
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Originally Posted by PanzerMeyer
3Dfx? You mean the video card company that went under 19 years ago?


Yeah, but we're not talking 19 year-old graphics. More like 24. smile



The rusty wire that holds the cork that keeps the anger in
Gives way and suddenly it’s day again
The sun is in the east
Even though the day is done
Two suns in the sunset, hmph
Could be the human race is run
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