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More text and… stuff
November 15th, 2005

I uploaded a new Windows binary yesterday (and a Linux one today) featuring quite a few new engine developments, which I’ll do my best to explain in detail…

Firstly let me say, Mage has been progressing nicely. Engine development has generally become a reactive process. I firstly ask myself the question, “What do I want to be able to do in the game next?” and then go about improving the engine to allow me to do it. So that’s cool. I’m quite pleased that Fishink is getting to the stage that it almost feels like a game, that is, I don’t have to look over the players shoulder to tell them what they have to do next, or why what they’re trying to do won’t work.

Dennis talking!Since the last version of Mage, there is now a spiffy text engine. Dennis is able to ‘say’ things as a reaction to Signals being emitted. I find that I’m adding new signals in an effort to provide more feedback to things that the player may want to do. Admittedly, there may be a bit of a feedback overload, e.g. saying “Excellent, a torch!” may be a bit superfluous… but saying things like, “I’m not going down there it’s too dark!” is a great way to indicate that if you want to go down the dark scary hole, you’re going to need a light.

Some new stuff that haven’t made it onto the website yet include, (for lack of a better term) framerate throttling. As I reported previously, I had a rogue SDL_Delay(50) in my main loop… which is bad. The engine now attempts to maintain a steady frame rate on all computers… which is good.

I’ve also moved the Inventory configuration into, would you believe it, config. I need to make more of a effort to get all the config out of C++ as it’s not really an engine (in my opinion) if you need to use gcc to compile your script.

Another thing thats in the pipeline is a recorder. I intend to use a recorder so that people can download Fishink, play with it, and upon, (god forbid) finding a bug, send me a recording of what they did in order to make it occur. After thinking about it for a little while it doesn’t feel very hard to implement.

And of course, I need to start working on path-finding. I do get several complaints from people regarding Dennis refusing to move out of a nook because they’re not clicking in precisely the right place. The bridge in the cave is an excellent example of this 🙂

So that about rounds it up. Apologies for the tardiness with regard to my uploading of a Mac binary. It won’t be much longer. It’s rather ironic, seeing as all the development is done on my Powerbook G4!