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Submitted by Jeffrey Isselee, posted on April 11, 2002

Image Description, by Jeffrey Isselee

Screenshots are from my current work in progress, Golden Hind. Ultimately, it will be a multiplayer real-time sea adventure/roleplaying game. Golden Hind has been under heavy development for the last 3 months and is slated for public release at the end of this summer. The game is being programmed in C++ using MSVC 6 and DirectX. The graphics engine is of isometric design, with height mapping and multiple layers. It is currently implemented using Direct3D 7, but I am considering moving it to D3D8.

The maps consist of 64 x 32 pixel tiles, organized in a diamond pattern, and ship and object movement is implemented by a custom "handing off" algorithm that transfers the objects from tile to tile. Ship movement is fluid and scenes are kept busy with a number of animated special and environmental effects. Also under development is a pixel-perfect collision detection system for the combat engine. All graphics are custom-made(please forgive me, I'm just a lowly programmer). Texturing and lighting is dynamic with consideration to height and time of day, with original code for seamless texture blending. Soon to be in development is a large-scale client/server multiplayer engine using DirectPlay.

Some of the features of the final version include:
  • Thirteen unique ships to purchase or capture.
  • Large-scale multiplayer capabilities over the Internet.
  • A detailed combat system, including boarding, plundering, and scuttling of ships.
  • Many different roles to choose, including trading, escorting, piracy, and exploration.
  • Completely upgradeable and changeable ships, letting you improve as your budget allows.
  • An ever-changing world, including day/night cycles and a weather system.
  • A dynamic economy, allowing for a rich and exciting system of trade.
  • Over half a dozen powerful empires and alliances to side with.
  • A majestic and lengthy musical score, unique to Golden Hind.
  • A complex, multi-channel chat system.
  • For more information regarding the Golden Hind project, stop by the website at:

    Image of the Day Gallery


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    Archive Notice: This thread is old and no longer active. It is here for reference purposes. This thread was created on an older version of the flipcode forums, before the site closed in 2005. Please keep that in mind as you view this thread, as many of the topics and opinions may be outdated.

    April 11, 2002, 02:26 PM

    Nice, I love isometric engines.



    April 11, 2002, 02:35 PM

    There was an article on gamasutra that tells you how to solve that problem.


    April 11, 2002, 02:36 PM

    Cool! Looks like World Of Pirates is up against some stiff competition! Looks good and sounds like it's got a lot of cool features. The only constructive criticism I have is that the trees seem disproportionatly larger than everything else... Well, to my eyes anyway.

    Congratulations on what looks like an exciting product.



    April 11, 2002, 02:44 PM

    that pretty cool.... i bet making that beats moking text based games.....

    Ted L. Chen

    April 11, 2002, 02:45 PM


    This is my first time actually posting. I saw the isometric thing and just thought I had to post. For "programmer art" its actually looking pretty good. I love clean abstract colors/lines and hope you don't decide to go down the photorealism route later on. The boats look great too.

    The only thing to critique is that in the bottom left and top right images, there's some light colored stuff in the water. I'm guessing it's cannon fire hitting the water but looks a bit odd. Perhaps a bit more variation in them (they all look the same sans horizontal flipping).

    Something cool might be the inclusion of smoke effects when they're firing on each other. That would also lend some user feedback on who is actually firing (an ever important thing to know).

    Good luck on using DirectPlay. It's been ungainly in the past and while has been improved, even the Duel sample included in the newest SDK has some bandwidth/connection problems (with just two players to boot). While as good a starting place as any, just to be safe, I suggest penciling in some learning time and coding for winsock, for that time when you realize DPlay won't cut it. ;)



    April 11, 2002, 02:49 PM


    I love this pic, except that it is too dark a bit, but It looks almost like 2.005D ;p

    But this picture looks like my old grandma's memories... Still lovely pic ;p

    I would suggest adding more dimensions though. Especially considering the fact that it is D3D8 ...hey ! Why not D2D8 ? I believe you wanted to say DX8.

    A DHenstock

    April 11, 2002, 02:58 PM

    Some shadows would help to ground the ships, although hopefully not against the shore or on a reef, hehe. Looks good.

    Saad Faisal

    April 11, 2002, 03:20 PM

    Very very nice work. I always see a positive approach on IOTD but it would be much more good if we can share our experiences with other flipcodians. What do u guyz say?


    April 11, 2002, 03:41 PM

    MC BAXTON, you're an idiot, please shutup.

    As for the picture, it's lookin' good, no matter what tools like BAXTON have to say about D2D8 or whatever the hell he was saying...
    I do agree that the trees look a little disproportionately huge, especially compared to that city.

    And that doesn't look like cannon fire in the water, the first time I saw it, I thought it was a bunch of schools of fish.

    Things are shaping up just fine, keep at it.


    April 11, 2002, 03:45 PM


    Nice screenshots.

    Gotta love that blue squishiness that sticks to the back of the ironclad's hull ;-)


    Hiro Protagonist

    April 11, 2002, 03:51 PM

    I believe he said it was implemented using DX7.
    I also believe that he said he wanted to move it to D3D8, which is correct, since DX8 does not have DirectDraw.


    April 11, 2002, 03:57 PM

    Pretty good tiles and sprites for such a lowly programmer.

    Another question. Is it possible to write any program without one of this engine things? If not why bother even using the name and just say program or in this case game.


    April 11, 2002, 03:59 PM

    Those ships look great. Are they actual 3d models or flat images?
    Do you really have a day/night cycle or is it just getting a little darker at night? I can't imagine sitting there for hours until the sun get's up again so I can shoot my enemy :)


    Hiro Protagonist

    April 11, 2002, 04:04 PM

    Sounds like a fun game. Nice screenshots.
    Also, I would like to remark on the use of DirectPlay for your game. I think it is a wise decision.DirectPlay has been optimized for Massively Multiplayer Games and offers you many many features that you will probably not want to handle yourself. I am assuming that you will be using DPlay 8.1 of course. DirectPlay takes some knowledge of multithreading, and does have a learning curve, but when used correctly can be a tremendous advantage to your game development. Good luck!


    April 11, 2002, 04:05 PM

    WOW! an IOTD that looks nice ;-)

    anyways... cant you make a RAMPARK clone of that one? (or what was that atari game called where the ships was battling against the castles.. (in singleplayer and in multiplayer castle against castle;))

    ive been thinking of making a clone of that for multiplayer but due to times i never bothered since such games needs alot of gfx to be nice and booring code.. but you seem to already have both tasks done.. :)

    and for multiplayer care to think about not using directplay in case you need speed..

    (directplay uses tcp .. blah;)

    Arne Rosenfeldt

    April 11, 2002, 04:13 PM

    It seems that the

    The IOTD experience is being destroyed-Thread

    woke up someone

    Hiro Protagonist

    April 11, 2002, 04:18 PM

    DirectPlay is built on UDP actually. You should do more homework before posting.


    April 11, 2002, 04:19 PM

    If you believe in what you see u have a chance to believe in yourself.

    I believe he will move it to DX8
    It is total nonsense implementing 2d on 3d, so he could even use DX3
    DX8 is simply not designed for 2d graphics

    This game is old already ... like a newborn old man


    April 11, 2002, 04:20 PM

    I agree that you are idiot


    April 11, 2002, 04:28 PM

    Neat. I think that the terrain could also need some shadowing, at least shadows that are caused by direct lighting (the sun). It'd look really cool! Plus, it would have been neat to see some explosions!! ...and some fire!!! (and smoke!!!)


    April 11, 2002, 04:40 PM

    I was wondering what had happened to one of our foremost local trolls. Think of the devil...

    Shawn Kirst

    April 11, 2002, 04:41 PM

    No stupid posts from that Division By Zero guy yet, but a visit from our old friend MC BAXTON.
    /me hmmmms...

    Well, nice work you have there Jeffrey. I have a younger brother who loves this kinda stuff. I'll be sure to pass him some links. My only gripe is, it seems your grass tiles transition directly into water, which looks a little odd IMO. A grass->sand->water transition would probably look a lot better. Or is it just the way this particular map was designed?

    Hiro Protagonist

    April 11, 2002, 05:12 PM

    The Duel sample in the DX8 SDK, actually uses DirectPlay4. For a better representation of network capablilities in DP8, check out the Maze samples.


    April 11, 2002, 05:16 PM

    You realize, of course, that mc baxton and division by zero are the same person, right?


    April 11, 2002, 05:38 PM

    "It is total nonsense implementing 2d on 3d, so he could even use DX3
    DX8 is simply not designed for 2d graphics"

    OMFG, you're a total mo-tard.

    I can't believe you don't see the adavantages to using a 3D API to make a 2D game. Just hardware accelerated fragment (pixel) operations and easy sprite rotation/morphing are enough reason to me.

    I hope you're just spouting nonsense to piss people off. But if you really are that dense, here's from the DX8 FAQ on MSDN:

    "What happened to DirectDraw?
    Much of the functionality of DirectDraw has now been subsumed into the new Direct3D8 interfaces. Developers working on purely 2D applications may wish to continue using the old DirectX 7 interfaces. Developers working on 3D applications with some 2D elements are encouraged to use Direct3D alternatives (point sprites and billboard textures, for example) as this will result in improved performance and flexibility."

    Sniper BoB

    April 11, 2002, 05:44 PM

    that was so fcking lame.... if u are gonna make stupid posts like that they might as well at least be funny


    April 11, 2002, 05:48 PM

    What problem?

    Sniper BoB

    April 11, 2002, 05:52 PM

    hehe... I'm guessing that you are new to game programming.

    An engine is the technologie that drives a game. Essencially the engine is the program and the game is content for the program (which may include more program code).

    For example:

    Half-Life is a game for the engine by the same name. A user (meaning fans of the game/engine) made game that plugs into an engine is commonly known as a mod. Therefore Counter-Strike is a user made game running on the Half-Life engine, or a Half-Life mod. If someone asks you what game you are playing and there are Terrorist running around building tops you will respond "Counter-Strike" not "Half-Life"


    April 11, 2002, 06:24 PM

    Im not trying to be funny

    Your reply was not worth my reply


    April 11, 2002, 06:29 PM

    Finish your game first before you try to make the switch to DX 8. It's pretty nasty when you first look at it!

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