Hi people...it's been a long time since i wrote something to my .tech update. I'm here, all bored with exams, so i decided to take a break and update my .tech file. So here it goes.
I finally have a website up and running. We gathered up a small team here in my country and started to work on a game engine, and a game on top of it. The url is: www.StormBreakStudios.com, and I take the time to introduce the team:
and two more perpahs will take care of the sound part, but until this time i haven't received any answer from them. They are really great people to work with, even if some of us are separated be quite a large geographical distance.
The engine's name is Unleashed, and is beeing developed in Visual C++ (what else?) using OpenGL for rendering. It's highly abstract, so suport for other API's is possible. We are at an early stage of our development, but things are looking up for us. I'm also hosting a small gamedeveloper comunity on this site, intended mainly for people in my country, as all the documents are in romanian.
I want to say a few words about the engine. We are pushing for realtime lighting, shadows and hidden surface removal. The data representation structure, that i have choosed is an altered octree model, as it gives me a high flexibility in the engine. So far i'm not going to talk about the algorithms involved in the engine, but as soon as it will be up and running, i will release a document, describing how everything works, in details. During the development, we are going to release some screenshots, along with documents regarding the development of the engine.
Since i like talking about gamedev, here is something about hardware and textures:
A lot of new hardware and stuff showed up in the last few monhts.
What still bugged me was the problem of getting an acurate image when looking very close at 3D geometry. I have developed some new ideas and here they are. I started looking at 3D shooters and i observed that there are a lot of textures wich are built on the same base texture. For example take a basic concrete texture. You will found it as is, with some spots on it, a bit of dirt on one texture, storing the same basic texture with minor modifications all over again. Why not store one concrete texture at high detail, and then at runtime, you blend on it various small textures and images(buttons, dirt, etc...).Take for example the q3arena textures, basic tile concret, and then upon the same basic texture you find 4-5 images to create an arch or anything else (I'm not making fun of the q3 engine or textures, they are cool). Take the concrete example, why store it once , and then once again with a 32x32 skull image on it (The same skull appears on more the one texture BTW).
How to store a 64x64 skull image wich is more then 50transparent? It still uses a lot of memory. You can compress it with a RLE style algorithm, or even better subdivide the image in small squares and discard the transparent ones (kind of the way movies are compressed with JPEG algorithms). Imagine having all this in hardware. Then whe would'nt need 64 megs on our video board.
In Unleashed, i am going to use a highly flexibile shader architecture, in order to use the available texture memory, at it's best.
Until next time, wish me luck with my engine. If you have any questions related to our work, feel free to contact us, or leave a message on our messageboard at our website. Bye to all... I'm out.