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Dark GDK / DGDK Open Source Project

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TechLord
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Posted: 23rd Sep 2011 04:06
The starter framework for XMLFile & File Component is completed. In fact I redesigned the implementation of the XML Parser with improved flexibility and features in the process Moved on to Goal A::Task c of the S3GP Roadmap: Integrate OgreBullet (BulletPhysics) for Components to replace Box2D 2D Physics, add 3D Physics. It presented a small challenge in the setup, but, its coming along nicely.



Gibba gobba
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Posted: 28th Sep 2011 08:02
A big question, how does the game control work? Does it run through it's own coding language? I know there can be code involved if needed, but to what extent? Does it run through an event-based system of some sorts? How would it work and how simple is it to use and understand?

Hello one and all...
TechLord
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Posted: 28th Sep 2011 11:14 Edited at: 28th Sep 2011 12:38
Quote: "A big question, how does the game control work? Does it run through it's own coding language? I know there can be code involved if needed, but to what extent? Does it run through an event-based system of some sorts? How would it work and how simple is it to use and understand?"


Gibba gobba, that is 5 Big Questions. LOL!

S3GP offers three (3) difficulty levels of Game Development.

Level 1 - Game Developers download S3GP, run it, and start building games with its built-in Visual Editing Tools and Library of Prefabs: `Part` Assets, Logic Scripts, Game Play Templates, Embeddable Mini-Apps. No external Scripting or Media creation required.

Level 2 - Game Developers can add to the Library of Prefabs by digging into the S3GXL (XML/LUA) Script API and modify/add Logic Scripts and use external Editors to create `Part` Assets for modular media creation with S3GP Visual Tools.

Level 3 - Game Developers can access the source code via SVN and add new features to S3GP Core Libraries and Framework itself.

S3GP will provide Visual Editing Tools for setting up all game logic, data, and media. If you desire a more in-depth details please elaborate with more detail in your questions, thanks.

Gibba gobba
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Posted: 29th Sep 2011 03:20
Sorry about the lack of specification (especially with the number of questions! )

Could there be a basic scripting/logic creation system through a drag-and-drop tile system or through selecting events? Like the Alice animation tool but with events specific to game design?

Hello one and all...
TechLord
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Posted: 29th Sep 2011 06:28 Edited at: 7th Oct 2011 13:13
Quote: "Could there be a basic scripting/logic creation system through a drag-and-drop tile system or through selecting events? Like the Alice animation tool but with events specific to game design?"

Yes! S3GP will provide Visual Editing Tools for setting up all game logic, data, and media. A Game Creation System for Non-Programmers and Non-Artist.

My strategies are to:

1) Incorporate a Component-based Consolidated 2D/3D GUI System where essentially the entire 3D Game-world is a Graphical User Interface. I use a Entity/Component Model in which Widgets are containers that loosely couple input, collision, and visual components. You can combine these the components in different variations to create different types of widgets, and layer Widgets on top one another to create more complex Gadgets (composite Widget).

2) Incorporate Modular Construction Systems for 2D, 3D, and Audio in which Parts can be assembled to create a wide variety 3D Characters, Music, etc. 2b) Incorporate Visual Construction Tools (ala Spore Creature Creator) to assemble these Parts Assets and apply Computer Automation in complex/tedious areas.

3) Establish network repositories and distribution systems that make it easy for Programmers/Artist of all skill levels to contribute Part Packs and Logic Modules for Non-Programmers and Non-Artist to use.

4) Use a Visual Logic Editor to create customized Game Mechanics at a high level using Logic Modules. I've examined the Visual Logic Editing approaches used by Kodu, Kismet, Alice,Scratch. What I admire about LBP's Visual Logic Circuit implementation is that complexity level is scalable. Simple circuits can be combined to create more complex ones. Additionally, LBP's visual representation is unlike any of the others described above. It makes a beautiful game out of creating mundane logic. That philosophy is on par with what I desire to do and a majority of my inspirations for the ultimate Game Creation System come from Games not Game Engine Tools.

I've pondered over approaches to Visual Logic Editing. My current idea based on my experience in writing Script Systems and my plan is GUI-tize a stack-based Virtual Machine with a relatively small Visual Logic Instruction Set. The Logic Circuitry (Input/Output Connection) System that Kismet and LBP uses does appear to be very intuitive. The trick for me, will be to find a way to make Visual Logic Machine equally intuitive visually.

Gibba gobba
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Posted: 30th Sep 2011 03:18
Cool! Glad to see someone like me couldn't possibly be left out in the cold!

Hello one and all...
TechLord
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Posted: 6th Oct 2011 16:52 Edited at: 19th Oct 2011 07:54
The component-based design has presented some interesting design challenges. I'm currently working on the new XML Parser, which is the heart of S3GE's Data Loading System. I'm looking for ideas for the new S3GXL XML Tags. In the previous Entity System there where XML Tags specific to the Entity. However with the new component system there is a simplified data model for loading in components. There is technically only one type of a entity. Entities are defined by the composition of components. This composition is applicable to all single and layer-composite interactive Characters, GUI Controls, etc.

Below is an example of the new S3GXL Tags. All suggestions welcomed, so please offer them.

Current S3GXL Tags Example


Gibba gobba
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Posted: 7th Oct 2011 01:55
I heard somewhere that the compiler system will make an exe and a txt file containing all the data the exe will run. Is this true?

Hello one and all...
TechLord
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Posted: 7th Oct 2011 08:37
Quote: "I heard somewhere that the compiler system will make an exe and a txt file containing all the data the exe will run. Is this true?"


S3GP is a Game Engine Application (S3GP.exe) just like any other Game or Editor executable, the difference is, it uses external LUA Scripts to customize game engine behaviors, audio/visuals, and configuration options.

S3GP is NOT a Game Engine Library however its Source Code is available for download and that is what get compiled with VC++ to create the S3GP.exe.

At the moment, S3GP is only distributed in its Open Source form, simply because its in a development stage and there isn't much to see/hear/do when its compiled into a App. When I get the GUI Entities functional I will compile the S3GP.exe App and make it available for download.

S3GP offers three (3) difficulty levels of Game Development.

Level 1 - Game Developers download S3GP.exe, run it, and start building games with its built-in Visual Editing Tools and Library of Prefabs: `Part` Assets, Logic Scripts, Game Play Templates, Embeddable Mini-Apps. No external Scripting or Media creation required.

Level 2 - Game Developers can add to the Library of Prefabs by digging into the S3GXL (XML/LUA) Script API and modify/add Logic Scripts and use external Editors to create `Part` Assets for modular media creation with S3GP Visual Tools.

Level 3 - Game Developers can access the source code via SVN and add new features to S3GP Core Libraries and Framework itself. This is the Level we're working with in the Development Stage.

Gibba gobba
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Posted: 11th Oct 2011 01:37
Hey, at one point you mentioned that if a feature someone believed was needed was not incorporated when the final product is released, you'll add it in later. Does this mean that S3GP will have an update system?

Hello one and all...
TechLord
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Posted: 12th Oct 2011 17:55
Quote: "Hey, at one point you mentioned that if a feature someone believed was needed was not incorporated when the final product is released, you'll add it in later. Does this mean that S3GP will have an update system?"


Yes, the S3GP will have an Update System. In fact, Updating Content was one of the initial drivers for implementing network services at the core operation levels. S3GP provides multiple options for Updating.

Automated Update Management

Install Options

1. Install on Start: Pre-loads remote Assets by checking local assets against new/updated on remote, installs on local machine prior to game launch.

2. Install in Play: Checks local assets against new/updates streams Updates during play. If Asset not available will use Sub , Queue, and Install on Exit .

3. Install On Demand : Installs Remote as needed, if not local available.
Optional Prompt, to instlall immediately or Install on Exit

4. Install on Exit: Uses local Asset Replacements/Subs and queue remote asset for download when exiting the client.

User Selective Update Management

S3GE is designed with consideration for the smoothest and fastest possible Massive FPS Combat and Mini-games and desires minimum loading before or during combat. Due to the unpredictable nature of real-time Editng System (in which new content can be added, modified, or removed during game play) and constant new content additions I’m implementing a variety techniques to update the client.

To cope with the ever changing content, two strategies are employed: 'Dummy' Replacements and Streamed Updates.

The Dummy Replacement Class feature uses media files already downloaded to the client as fill-ins. The Player is given a option to download the needed files prior to engaging combat.

Changes can occur anytime the player may have to face new mobs without possessing needed files. In this scenario, the player will be given a choice of options based on whether the attacking mob is AI or Human controlled at the time of the encounter.

If Mob is AI controlled the player can elect to download files, in which the files are downloaded on-the-spot, and combat engagement is put in a pending status until download completion. If the players elects to skip download, they are offered to Flee or Engage (a replacement). If the player flees the needed files are queued for streaming download and engagement with such mob will be put in pending status automatically until download is completed.

If Mob is Human controlled the player is only offered to Flee or Engage (a replacement) in which if the player flees the needed files are queued for streaming download and engagement with such mob will be put in pending status automatically until download is completed.

Both situations can influence a Party Combat formation, thus all party members must be notified if a players has to ‘Sit Out’ (download) upon combat engagement.

Gibba gobba
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Posted: 16th Oct 2011 07:44
After everything I learned about this, I can't tell you how much I'm excited for this to release!

Hello one and all...
Matty H
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Posted: 17th Oct 2011 23:24 Edited at: 18th Oct 2011 17:47
Hi Tech,

I am just starting a project that has similarities to this project although it's not as large.

I was interested in what XML lib you are using? I have looked at a few and am leaning toward TinyXML or Xerces. Any thoughts?

Also, I see you are using composition(components) for most aspects, how does that work roughly in regards to the XML?

At the moment I am thinking of using inheritance, any class that wishes to read/write from/to xml will just inherit from the xml super class and overload load()/save() functions etc.

How would an xml component work, very roughly, if you have time, I know you are very busy?


EDIT: OK, I think I get it now, and I will probably use composition for the xml objects. Keep up the good work on this project Tech

Clonkex
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Posted: 19th Oct 2011 03:53
Man, you really are putting a huge amount of work into this project! It's just so cool!

I still really want to help with this, don't worry. The download failed again since the last time I tried. I will try again, but this time there's a difference: I have a laptop! So if I run out of time, I can just come back next time and it will continue where it left off! I just go to the library and use their free WiFi internet.

Clonkex

TechLord
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Posted: 19th Oct 2011 10:54
Sorry for the tardy replies guys, I've been under-the-weather.

Hi Matty, good to hear from you. About XML. I'm using IrrXML. Its easy-to-use, fast, and flexible enough to expand if you need features similar to tinyXML and Xerces. I've rolled my own system to cache data into memory, parse xml tags by context, and perform syntax error checking.

Fine tuning S3GE's components implementation is a continuous effort. For S3GE, I use a combination of XML (to describe Game Object Data) and LUA (to script with the Game Object's Data) both Client and Server. I call this combo, S3GXL. S3GXL Entity composition is similar to creating Entities in the C++ Framework code S3GXL Example.

There are several different components defined in the Framework. In fact, XML Parsing is handled by a XMLFile Component. There is only one type of Entity. Entities are defined by their composition of components. With S3GXL I provide `alias` multi-labeling mechanism as for creating multiple xml tags to simplify distinguishing entities.

S3GXL Alias provides an ideal atlernative to inheritance for Entities in XML. However, I do use class inheritance in the C++ Framework where its beneficial. S3G::Engine -> Component::System(s) -> Component::Manager -> Component:bject, Entity::System -> Entity::Manager -> Entity:bject.

Matty H
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Posted: 19th Oct 2011 17:04
Thanks for the info.

IrrXML was the first one I looked at but I was under the impression you can't write to an xml file, is that correct?

TechLord
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Posted: 19th Oct 2011 20:27 Edited at: 19th Oct 2011 23:59
Quote: "IrrXML was the first one I looked at but I was under the impression you can't write to an xml file, is that correct?"
irrXML is just for reading and parsing XML on the Fly. You have to roll your own system to cache and use the xml node data. I'm using the same xml node cache system to build XML nodes in memory, export, and write to a file with STL Ostream. Truth be told, some parts of my system were inspired by TinyXML. You can see the XMLFile Component class in the S3GE Framework Scenergy files.

TinyXML could save you some time. However, its easier to build your own XML Node Cache System to handle both import/export as you have write specific code to process the XML Data anyways. I'll explain details of my system if your interested in rolling your own (assuming you use irrXML).

Gibba gobba
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Posted: 20th Oct 2011 06:59
Still gonna take 7 years now?

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TechLord
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Posted: 20th Oct 2011 09:14
Quote: "Still gonna take 7 years now? "
Possibly. I expect development time to exponentially decrease with each system/feature added. However, once it's Editor Suite is functional, Devs will be able to develop there Games in weeks.

Matty H
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Posted: 20th Oct 2011 16:31
Quote: "TinyXML could save you some time. However, its easier to build your own XML Node Cache System to handle both import/export as you have write specific code to process the XML Data anyways. I'll explain details of my system if your interested in rolling your own (assuming you use irrXML)."


Thanks Tech, I have just started with TinyXML, seems pretty good so far.

Gibba gobba
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Posted: 21st Oct 2011 01:26 Edited at: 22nd Oct 2011 01:51
Quote: "Possibly. I expect development time to exponentially decrease with each system/feature added. However, once it's Editor Suite is functional, Devs will be able to develop there Games in weeks.
"

Cool to hear. This is seriously awesome. I still wonder why you aren't getting too much help here...
How about outside of TGC?

[EDIT Oh, and I have to ask. I know you're using OGRE for rendering, but how will the project's graphics be? Like, what could they be compared to?

Hello one and all...
TechLord
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Posted: 25th Oct 2011 12:52 Edited at: 25th Oct 2011 13:11
Quote: "[EDIT Oh, and I have to ask. I know you're using OGRE for rendering, but how will the project's graphics be? Like, what could they be compared to?"
Checkout TorchLight.

Quote: "I still wonder why you aren't getting too much help here...
How about outside of TGC?"
The project appears to be ambitiously grand and there isn't a readily available demo. I've advertised the Project in a several Game Dev communities and I'm certain once Functional Demo is released, it will garner more interest. Until than, I'm going to continue along this path alone I'm afraid.

Gibba gobba
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Posted: 26th Oct 2011 01:35
Don't you have some inside help?

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TechLord
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Posted: 8th Nov 2011 12:35
I have unfortunate news. My 6yr old Development workstation has totally failed. It appears to be a hardware issue not impacting the Disk Drive (which is a good thing). This presents a small set back in programming dev time as I acquire a new Dev workstation and rebuild required software configurations. Its about time to upgrade anyhow.

During this downtime, I've taken time to get to know the new and improved PlayStation Network and discovered PlayStation®Home. I became immediately upset to learn that PSH is accomplishing feats very similar to what I envisioned Super 3D Game World to do.

Quote: "Super 3D Game World - A Scalable Multiplayer Online (SMO) Amusement Park that exploits all of Super 3D Game Engine's Multi-Genre ready features and game mechanics. Essentially A real-time 3D Sandbox in the form of a Virtual Amusement Park in which multiple Players can explore, socialize, and participate in rides, arcade mini-games, contest, events, and attractions to win prizes and upgrade their Avatar. The game world is designed in a modular fashion, allowing Game Designers to develop sub-games independently as Coming Attractions and plug them into S3GW when ready to Open to the Public."


PSH is fun. Very Fun! Its existence has a dozen mixed emotions swirling around in my gut. On the Right hand, I feel jubilant in foreseeing the future of gaming. On the Left hand, I feel slightly depressed about being yet another step behind the commercial developers. However, there is always room for improvement and I still have a few tricks left up my sleeve.

PSH confirms that the development of S3GP must continue to become a reality.

Matty H
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Posted: 8th Nov 2011 16:53
Home is pretty cool, although I have not been on for a good while. I never knew you has a PS3, you should add me, more so if you play Battlefield 3

PSN: DozyHole

Sorry to hear about your computer, hope you get it sorted soon.

Gibba gobba
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Posted: 9th Nov 2011 02:29
Don't know what comp you were using last, but hopefully the next one is a better one.

Also, you've never seen PSH? Even when I read the description for S3GW, I was thinking of PSH.

Still, you are absolutely right. S3GP MUST BECOME A REALITY!

Hello one and all...
TechLord
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Posted: 9th Nov 2011 07:36 Edited at: 9th Nov 2011 07:38
Quote: "Home is pretty cool, although I have not been on for a good while. I never knew you has a PS3, you should add me, more so if you play Battlefield 3

PSN: DozyHole"
Matty, perhaps I can catch you on PSH (PSN: taylorf2) Currently playing FFXIII with MW3 (pending). I also have a XBox360: TechlordX and Wii.

Quote: "Also, you've never seen PSH?"
I had no knowledge of PSH until a few days ago. After reading Wikipedia: Home has been in development since early 2005 and started an open public beta test on December 11, 2008. I cannot excuse SCEA of stealing my concept as DOSP started in August 2009 (in fact, it looks the other around, LOL). I'm pretty impressed with myself on how on par my vision for S3GW is with SCEA with no prior knowledge about PSH.

My vision for S3GW is slightly different than PSH as it includes a full powered Visual Editing Suite for its users to Create Games and Apps. Its all about consolidation and that is still the over-seeing design philosophy for S3GP (S3GEngine --> S3GTools --> S3GWorld). I strongly believe the opportunity still exists for me (Indie Dev) to do something great.

Gibba gobba
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Posted: 10th Nov 2011 02:37
Of course it does! You've come this far!

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jason p sage
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Posted: 10th Nov 2011 17:54
Good Job TechLord and Team - I remember when you started , looking at it now ... Wow - great!

I'm facing editors my self - now - what a pain - kudos.. and the external physics - a pain initially - you know full well - good job again to all of you!

Gibba gobba
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Posted: 23rd Nov 2011 08:50
TechLord, what was your previous OS? Obviously your new computer will have Windows 7.

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TechLord
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Posted: 6th Dec 2011 09:37
Quote: "TechLord, what was your previous OS? Obviously your new computer will have Windows 7."
Sorry, for the delayed reply. I've been away on business, ready to get back to S3GP. I was previously using XP and will continue to do so (as I have a license for it). However I had to upgrade from VC9 to VC10 which requires a different setup

Gibba gobba
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Posted: 7th Dec 2011 00:33
Is it only the license the only reason you need XP, or is it required in another way?

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TechLord
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Posted: 19th Dec 2011 02:56
Quote: "Is it only the license the only reason you need XP, or is it required in another way?"
Yes.

Today, I've successfully compiled S3GE with VC++ 2010. Hooray!!! If there is a way to change the hideous default color theme for VC+ 2010 please share.

Dar13
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Posted: 19th Dec 2011 03:05
I really don't mind the color scheme, so I haven't gone through with it, but it seems like Tools->Options->Workflow Designer seems to be your best bet.

TechLord
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Posted: 19th Dec 2011 03:14
Thanks Dar13, I didn't find Tools->Options->Workflow Designer. However, I performed a Google search and found this.

Dar13
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Posted: 19th Dec 2011 03:19
Turns out the Workflow Designer doesn't do what I thought it did.
That tool you found looks cool though.

TechLord
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Posted: 19th Dec 2011 03:50 Edited at: 19th Dec 2011 03:56
Quote: "That tool you found looks cool though."
Yes, however, Tool Extensions (VSIX) can only be installed on the Pro Version of VC++ 2010, not the express version Related Article here.

Gibba gobba
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Posted: 20th Dec 2011 01:28
So what does compiling the engine do at this point so far?

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TechLord
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Posted: 20th Dec 2011 02:29 Edited at: 20th Dec 2011 02:30
Quote: "So what does compiling the engine do at this point so far?"


It is said that a screenshot is worth a thousand words.

Gibba gobba
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Posted: 20th Dec 2011 05:47
That "screenshot" won't come up.

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Clonkex
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Posted: 21st Dec 2011 09:28
It downloaded for me, but did not view in the browser, it downloaded onto the hard drive. I just opened it and looked at the creepy OGRE head

Nice work

Clonkex

TechLord
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Posted: 21st Dec 2011 20:49 Edited at: 21st Dec 2011 20:52
Quote: "It downloaded for me, but did not view in the browser, it downloaded onto the hard drive. I just opened it and looked at the creepy OGRE head "
Thanks Clonkex, there is a massive amount of code behind that creepy OGRE head. That screenshot doesn't properly convey how much is going on like the Log does. The Log reveals the setup the new Entity Component Object System, HTTP File Transfer Services via Host Server/Moderated Open Repository and S3GXL (XML & LUA) Client Side Scripting, XHTML Log Generation.

Red Eye
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Posted: 27th Dec 2011 20:09 Edited at: 27th Dec 2011 20:16
Great progress! Can't wait to see what you come up with next!

Cheers,

A dude
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Posted: 6th Jan 2012 21:44
The download link is broken.
TechLord
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Posted: 7th Jan 2012 07:37 Edited at: 7th Jan 2012 11:19
Quote: "The download link is broken. "
Oops! Sorry about that. The S3GP.zip has been temporarily removed until I stabilize the VC10 compile. ETA next week.

I will also be taking down Wiki due to an unrepairable security breach. I will be transferring documentation to the S3GP Web.

Gibba gobba
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Posted: 7th Jan 2012 19:22
1st: What does VC10 stand for?

2nd: Not another hack! Was it to the host server or your Wiki alone?

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Dar13
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Posted: 7th Jan 2012 19:23
Quote: "What does VC10 stand for?"

Visual C++ 10.0 IIRC.

TheeLord
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Posted: 8th Jan 2012 17:49
Keep up the good work whoever is working on this now days!
Gibba gobba
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Posted: 14th Jan 2012 09:04
Man, this project is the only one I've found that's trying to even remotely accomplish something like this! You're my only hope now (I'm to lazy for programming anyways...).

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TechLord
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Posted: 15th Jan 2012 04:59 Edited at: 15th Jan 2012 05:00
I talk a great deal about the development of S3GP, but, I rarely talk about the type of game I intend to develop with this awesome and amazing Game Platform. What type of game to develop with DOSP has always presented a challenge even from the very beginning of the project in 2009. Community members have recommended developing a FPS, RTS, and RPG. This has always been a tough question for me, because I love all computer games. I've been designing S3GP with the intent to support all popular genres out-of-box. Two years later I've finally decided on what kind of Game I will develop with S3GP. I've elected to develop a online persistent game world with multiple interfaces. The working title for the Game, DRifters.

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