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Author Topic: Minimalist flash port  (Read 2843 times)

archont

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Minimalist flash port
« on: March 09, 2008, 07:58:09 pm »

Hello there.

I did quite a bit of Flash development in my time but I never designed or coded a game I'd consider large - a pity. One day an idea came to my mind - if you've ever played Fallout Tactics you know the game utilized the resources it was given in a less than splendid way. The game was nice to look at, didn't hurt the ears but it had no storyline, no witty conversations.

Here's where you - and I - come in.

Today's players are too lazy to download a file, unpack it, just to play a 2d game. Most players anyway. Especially if the game requires installing components such as external libraries (openAL) or python. Players are still willing to play a 2d browser-based flash game. To date I haven't seen one decent RPG, which I have the intent of eventually changing.

Now, I personally think FIFE is just too large. Sure, additional features are nice, but truly great design is in simplicity. I'm not sure who said that, but a software product is complete not when there's nothing more to add, but when there's nothing more to remove that wouldn't make the product invalid. Maybe I'm just too into this whole netcat/ubuntu/KISS philosophy, but hey, it's just a freakin' 2d engine and it's been in development for ages. Do a few things, but do them FAST and without bugs.

But returning to the original topic: I'd like to borrow some of FIFE's code. The more the better of course, which is what this whole OS philosophy is about. Rendering will have to be redone and greatly simplified as well as optimized but for the rest I would like to borrow FIFE's solutions.

Solutions regarding the following:

3d space : as seen in Fallout:Tactics, which had a 3d world created with 2d bitmaps.
occulsion testing, surface partitioning in 3d space
pathfinding
as much AI code as possible
animations, actors
lightning

Any tips, suggestions are welcome of course. How much of the code could be easily ported? How much of it is spaghettified in deep dependancies on global pointers, obscure home-brewed macros, helper classes or speed hacks? On the other hand, how much of the mentioned code is standalone, neatly encapsulated with clear, well-documented interfaces?

Oh, and can your engine actually support the kind of pseudo3d rendering we saw in Fallout Tactics?

Cheers.
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Shadowdancer

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Re: Minimalist flash port
« Reply #1 on: March 10, 2008, 09:56:09 am »

But returning to the original topic: I'd like to borrow some of FIFE's code. The more the better of course, which is what this whole OS philosophy is about. Rendering will have to be redone and greatly simplified as well as optimized but for the rest I would like to borrow FIFE's solutions.

Well, FIFE is released under the GPLv2 license, so as long as you keep to the terms, go and make the world a better place.
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mvBarracuda

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Re: Minimalist flash port
« Reply #2 on: March 10, 2008, 09:58:44 am »

Hello there.
Hello Archont

Now, I personally think FIFE is just too large. Sure, additional features are nice, but truly great design is in simplicity. I'm not sure who said that, but a software product is complete not when there's nothing more to add, but when there's nothing more to remove that wouldn't make the product invalid. Maybe I'm just too into this whole netcat/ubuntu/KISS philosophy, but hey, it's just a freakin' 2d engine and it's been in development for ages. Do a few things, but do them FAST and without bugs.

But returning to the original topic: I'd like to borrow some of FIFE's code. The more the better of course, which is what this whole OS philosophy is about. Rendering will have to be redone and greatly simplified as well as optimized but for the rest I would like to borrow FIFE's solutions.

Solutions regarding the following:

3d space : as seen in Fallout:Tactics, which had a 3d world created with 2d bitmaps.
occulsion testing, surface partitioning in 3d space
pathfinding
as much AI code as possible
animations, actors
lightning

Any tips, suggestions are welcome of course. How much of the code could be easily ported? How much of it is spaghettified in deep dependancies on global pointers, obscure home-brewed macros, helper classes or speed hacks? On the other hand, how much of the mentioned code is standalone, neatly encapsulated with clear, well-documented interfaces?
FIFE might not be the perfect solution for your purpose. We don't have any Flash experts on the team so we have no idea how much of our C++ & Python code could be ported to ActionScript and how easy it would be.

There are a couple of flash-based isometric engines available. Maybe these would be better starting points for you; for details see:
http://zegarkus.com/2007/11/30/isometric-game-engines/

In case you're convinced that porting FIFE to ActionScript could work out, you'll end up simply trying it out. Our code can be found in SVN. In case you give it a try let us know how it works out.

One note concerning borrowing FIFE code: FIFE is currently licensed under GPL 2.0 or newer. So as soon as you use FIFE code for your application, it falls under the GPL 2.0 as well.

Oh, and can your engine actually support the kind of pseudo3d rendering we saw in Fallout Tactics?
Yes :-)
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