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Star Wars Rebellion 2 Game Development - The Real Thing


Vector
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How would you prefer to develop SWRII?  

27 members have voted

  1. 1. How would you prefer to develop SWRII?

    • C++, DirectX
      6
    • C++, OpenGL
      5
    • Visual Basic, DirectX
      11
    • Visual Basic, OpenGL
      2
    • Delphi, DirectX
      3
    • Delphi, OpenGL
      0


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Ok, lots of people have been here before, but I'm serious about this. I want something done... Now:!::!::!:

That's why I'm making this post.

 

Basically, I'm planning on starting and hosting the development of SWRII.

The language I use at the moment is Visual Basic. Now, I know a lot of people don't use visual basic, think it too simple to write proper programs with, etc. This is something i've thought about, however as a group, programmers could develop a series of DLL's, which means that we don't all have to use the same language.

 

I am hoping that this can be done in DirectX9, however if you want to use something different, eg DX8 or OpenGL, please post and i will take note of how many people would rather than not.

 

If you would like to be involved in the development of star wars rebellion 2, please post a response.

 

In a previous post a number of months ago, this idea was taken very far, but not started. (This post is located Here:http://www.swrebellion.com/postlite1546-rebellion+2.html) In these discussions, we as a group developed a Design Document, which is a description of the game, the tatics, what it would involve, etc. It is located here: http://warlords.swrebellion.com/junk/swr2.doc , and at my SWRII website: http://www.geocities.com/danielkerr88/

 

I am very interested in other comments that you may have, and / or anything that you may be able to contribute to the project. Thankyou in advance.

 

Vector

(Daniel Kerr)

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  • SWR Staff - Executive

In terms of implementation, Visual Basic and DirectX would be good. VB is easier get programmers into rather than VC++ or others. Its Windows and works quite well with DirectX. My own experience has been with DirectDraw (not the Direct3D stuff) and server/client models.

 

I do hope you have everything planned out before actually doing any code. Fleshing out the game design is the most important.

 

Good luck with this "Nth" attempt at Reb2

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i would like to help out but i have no programming or graphic skills what so ever :? so i dont know how i could help out, i think alot tho that might come in handy :lol:

 

but in all seriousness i would like to help but the lack of any major skills would be my drawback.

 

Darth_Ramoth

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You don't even have to produce anything, you could just be concept design, eg what are we going to do kind of thing. Everyone is welcome and all the help we can get is needed.

 

I've produced a forum for SWRII called "The Project" (Doesn't give any name, ie so i cant get the shit sued out of me... :? ) Anyways, if you wanna talk about it just go there

 

Um, seriously, it can't just be one person, can it?

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  • 2 weeks later...

SURE IT CAN BE ONLY ONE PERSON

 

But Seriously ,I'd Like to help but I'm not good at much,

 

Like my Photoshop 6 Skills, umm, Tiny Tiny Tiny little bit, I can't do very Much.

 

Gmax I SUCK.

 

Any Kind of programming Whatsoever, I SUCK AT, No C,C+,C++ or anything.

 

But I'd be Willing to do anything.

 

(the Only Thing I Know I'm good at is Legos, I built a AT-PT)

 

(My Brother has 3DS Max 6, and he is really good at moddling but I don't think I can Sway him to do anything)

 

(My Sister Has Photoshop CS, or was it CE, I Might be able to get her to do somthing)

 

If you need anything my E-mail is Luker@regandesigns.com

But I also Need you to tell me your E-mail, becuse I have Netscape 7.0 so I've got, Ah takes to long to Explain, Any way If you Need Me, I need your E-mail.

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  • 1 year later...
  • 11 months later...

:D Well, it is not dead yet. I learned VB and some stuff. Found a free 3D engine. Eight year veteran and I learned a few things, plus made some money to invest.

 

Make a basic windows driven interface like Rebellion for a start (3D battle will be a 'chart' battle for now).

 

It would be faster for me to write a new game than try to re-compile the disassembler code.

 

Oh, yeh, also to make some money...serious time requires serious money, but I would sell it quite cheap (no need to pirate game [spirit of Galactic Civilizations]). If you like it, you will buy it.

 

Plus the updates will require your own personal key code. After a while a patch would be released so it would be totally freeware.

 

I can hire experienced devs to do the final work. I am making and testing decent learning AI routines that will kick ass. Sytem level designer.

 

Of course, I cannot call it Star Wars or Lucas stuff... you guys can just add your 'Star Wars' TC Mod to it ;)

 

And this one for LucasArts being such a tight wad on the source code...they are not going to make any money off this one. :twisted:

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Yes. Thanks for the offer. I am a bit new, I just needed to update my skills. Alot of people are moving to the .NET framework, though alot of free stuff and ease is still with the old format for now (which is what I learned).

 

Although VB is easier to use...it would seem the game was written as a 'Windows Application'... C++.

 

I have not tried 3D or DirectX graphics. I wonder how much a person has to pay to M$ to use their DX libraries? Or maybe it is free. Sometimes I wish to use my own DLL so that the game will run on any OS. I am not going to go for the latest and greatest graphics. As in GalCiv...I wish to make a really decent AI to challenge a more mature audience...with the graphics coming in second. After all, there can always be a second edition with improvements if it is successful.

 

Of course the demo would be free to try... and I would welcome any help.

 

I can make the engine and I think I would have (maybe hire) a 3D programmer who already knows how to hook it in -so to speak. :)

 

I cannot see any reason why this project would fail. I have the time since I am retired and bored. Unless my health gets the better of me.

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  • SWR Staff - Executive

You can develop on DirectX for free. You just need the IDE like Visual Studio

It just takes a lot of time to develop, a lot of organization involved. We would support you here, but we need someone dedicated to lay the ground work. A lot of people can help fill in the content, if that's something you need developed. Images, models, etc.

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That is good to know. I can use people's images and sounds...you know to get around Lucas Arts copyright stuff. I am not much into graphics art so 3D models, skins concepts, cards etc. would be welcomed.

 

There is alot already here on this website..a good source of data. It would be neat to have a fan made image or model to go into a custom made game.

 

Of course, for the true Star Wars experience, people can just add back in the SW TC Mod. The code will be user friendly for modding to make that easy to replace.

 

I am taking the GalCiv approach for design. Pirates will always be..but I believe many people will like to buy a polished 'supported' solid game with a nice printed manual to read and other goodies. Surely a bargain for a low development price. Less than the price of a pizza.

 

I would give due credit for those whose images are used in the final product. After eight years, it is about time we get our true Rebellion 2. The technology is plenty out there and many tools are free to use. It will have nice graphics as much as possible (better than the original of course). :D

 

I have, at my age, played alot of games. Most new ones are dumbed down too much. I had more hope for EAW, but I am done with it for now. I am having more fun writing a new game program. It will take alot of time, but I have alot of time to burn; I hope a few more years at least ;)

 

A very good AI (that was my specialty). I am not going to encrypt the files. I want it to be very mod friendly. Any piracy would be free advertisment for me...and anything I make can go into making an even newer version that is even better (beyond what I can afford right now). Plus the revenue can help keep these websites alive and in business.

 

EDIT: I guess to keep up with the times, I should use the new Visual Basic .NET to write this? It is new to me, but so many people tell me to make it for the future (compatibility). VB6 was easy and known.

 

What do you think is the best language for speed of developement? Does it need the power of C++ (slow and longer to write) or get by with old VB6, or the new VB.NET? :?:

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  • SWR Staff - Executive

I really haven't develed into .NET myself. From what I read, VB.NET is a significant shift from VB6. However, it does work well with other .NET languages like C#.

 

The new technology (at least for Windows) is certainly focused on the .NET platform. That is where I would go. You could use VC++ for higher performance, but it would be longer to write and implement.

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sorry it took so long to get back to you guys, I was bogged down with final exams.

 

Vector err Slocket (did you used to be vector?),

 

If your interested in learning a new ".net" language, I highly reccomend c#.

I'm using c# and directx9 for my star wars project, and I've been pretty happy with it. I've only been programming in c# for about a year now, and I think it was pretty easy to get a hang of. C# seems to be the way that Microsoft is headed, and if you plan on using direct x in the future I strongly urge you to learn c# of visual basic. I've got a strong suspicion that visual basic is going to start to dissapear. In fact I beleieve that the XNA framework (new directx framework that allows developers to write games for the xbox) is currently only available for c# programmers (i think?? dont quote me on that).

 

I've heard that managed languages like c# are slow compared to C++, but I haven't seen anything to cause concern. If you want, I will post some more screenshots from my game that show the frames per second. Currently Im getting around 200 frames per second with five star destroyers on screen firing countless numbers of lasers at eachother. My project uses the high level shader language, and the ship models are rendered with per-pixel lighting (shader model 2.0). If you wanted to drop some of the fancy lighting I'm sure it would do even better.

 

The key to getting into c# and dx9 programming is going on amazon and getting a couple books on the topic. I've got a library of 6 or so game programming books that ive been relying on. In fact recent I've been spending a lot of time with my AI book (but i guess you really dont need any help there, id love to talk ai with ya sometime).

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As far as the whole Lucas Arts copyright buisness goes...

 

I've heard that Lucas Arts is actually pretty cool about their intellectual property. If you look around the web there is a ton of Star Wars fan stuff (admittedly not many games, but games are really hard to make).

 

I've always thought that as long as you acknowledge Lucas Arts as the owner of the Star Wars intellectual property, and make sure to emphasize that the game is not for profit, and your not associated with Lucas Arts, I think they will be cool about it. In this way the Star Wars fan base is protected, and can thrive.

 

Thats at least the idea under which I started my game, In Defense of the Empire.

If I end up releasing it for free download one day, and Lucas Arts tells me to take it down, I will. It is after all their idea.

 

Of course your looking more along the lines of making a game, selling it, and then making a Star Wars mod. The problem with that is that your going to have to actually come up with your own story, character, ships...

because if you made a game that basicly isnt a game until you add in a Star Wars mod, well I think the Lucas Arts lawyers would finally be able to earn their keep.

 

I guess all im saying is that the mod approach really only works for main stream games that have been out for awhile (that werent secretly meant as star wars games in the first place). But Im a pessimist, and if you still want to try and give it a go, don't let me hold ya back. Personally I'll just stick with making a fan-game and then (hopefully) releasing it for free.

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Thanks for some insight. I meant 'slow' for me to develope in the new languages...I never learned .NET stuff. (Sorry, I was never Vector. :) )

 

A game for a small profit would need a complete interesting story indeed...or I could just make a basic Fan SW Rebellion Redux game for free. A lot to think about.

 

Maybe LA just may like the idea and give it a throw. 8)

 

The C# languages really are the best for compatibility for now and the future. Well, I guess time to go to the book store and start catching up on C.NET. Microsoft really has dropped support for the Visual Basic languages. A lot is occuring since last year 2005.

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I forgot to mention that I use visual studio express (for c#). the best thing is its free!! you can download it from microsoft. You will also need the direct x sdk (software development kit) which you can get free from microsoft as well

 

the book that got me started was tom millers "beginning 3d game programming", however this book is now rather out of date, and the code requires changes to even get it to run.

 

you might want to give this book a try:

http://www.amazon.com/Introduction-Game-Programming-Direct-9-0c/dp/1598220160/sr=8-3/qid=1166716571/ref=sr_1_3/104-0280694-8916751?ie=UTF8&s=books

Im planning on getting it myself.

 

I bought microsofts step by step guide to c#, and it was just about all i needed to get going in the language.

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  • 2 weeks later...

I think .NET might be the way to go as you can get a series of different language developers together.

 

As I use Delphi, it doesn't matter much as I can make DLL's for VB or C++, or use .NET or C#. However you will have much to gain by using something as generic as .NET which will allow almost all to participate.

 

Plus, as nordwindranger mentioned, .net languages are freely available. Either in the Microsoft Express editions (http://msdn.microsoft.com/vstudio/express/), the Delphi and C#Builder Turbo edditions (http://www.codegear.com/Downloads/TrialandFreeVersions/Turbo/tabid/144/Default.aspx) and possibly some others.

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OpenGL vs. DirectX...end result the same. I believe OpenGL app may be faster in the end i think and it's platform independent. And it's a little chaotic with all these extensions, but just a little :) Nvidia also released and OpenGL shader debugger if i remember correctly. But they might as well have released the same (and hardware benchmarks) for DirectX.

 

Programming languages? Forget about Visual Basic and Delphi, they weren't even designed for 3d games in the first place. As Nordwindranger mentioned .NET uses managed code (i believe), therefore won't be as fast and efficient as the non-managed languages. C# may be also somewhat slower than C++ (i'm not saying that C# and .NET is bad, I just don't think it's the best choice for making games). And also I guess that free 3d engine is also written in C++ (also consider it's license, if it's GPL or something like that, then you have to release the source of your program).

 

As for the development environment. Visual Studio very good, you can also use Eclipse or NetBeans (both were designed for Java, but support other programming languages through plugins).

 

Books are surely good and you can find many of them in ebooks on various sites for free.

 

And some links to good sites dedicated to game development. Check out their articles and tutorials.

http://www.gamedev.net

http://www.devmaster.net

http://www.flipcode.com - this used to be one of the best sites, it's only an archive of old articles now, but still very useful

http://www.codesampler.com - some other tutorials

 

I hope at least those links will be of some use to you :)

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Programming languages? Forget about Visual Basic and Delphi, they weren't even designed for 3d games in the first place.

 

Lol, FWIW neither was C++ ;-)

 

But he/she is right, for sheer gut wrenching speed at high end, professional grade graphics, there is no competitor to C++.

 

Delphi is not far behind (Due a lot to the fact it uses a C++ compiler and has full, direct access to the WinAPI). VB6 will cost you a fair performance hit, plus it is now practically abandonware. the .NET languages are going to be slower then C++, but have IMHO performed quite well in what I have seen.

 

However, I have to contend that the speed difference is not going to be your major concern. What you need is developers. Anything you can do to make it easier for people to contribute to your project is going to be worth its weight in gold.

 

If you have a solid stockpile of C++ devs, go for it. But if you don't, then C++ is going to be significantly harder to get started in then C#VB.net/Delphi or even Java (which I think is fairly unsuited, by the way. It would however open up a large pool of potential developers). Harder = people less likely to commit and help. a 5-10% speed increase isn't any good to anyone if the game never gets made.

 

Besides, as far as gut wrenching speed goes, the original Rebellion ran on my Pentium 75 no worries. If what you make doesn't run decently in any modern language/framework on even a now antiquated PC, then there is a significantly greater problem in the code...

 

+$0.02c

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Programming languages? Forget about Visual Basic and Delphi, they weren't even designed for 3d games in the first place.

Lol, FWIW neither was C++ ;-)

True. But I meant that those languages/development environments were made for easier and more efficient creation of desktop and database applications. And that's where their strengths lie.

 

But he/she is right...

he :wink:

 

I must admit that I have never worked with .NET, but I don't see how it should connect developers using different languages. You still can't mix more languages together (into one code), can you? So it's nearly the same as using DLL libraries, but with slight performance penalty. Correct me, if I'm wrong.

 

However .NET if used right can be powerful tool. Eg. RunUO shards (open source Ultima Online servers made in C#.NET) can recompile all user scripts (also C#) into bytecode and then use them during the startup of the server. So the scripts run faster than interpreted scripts and because almost whole server is made this way (except network layer i guess), it's also extremely modable.

You just have to know what you want from it.

 

Besides, as far as gut wrenching speed goes, the original Rebellion ran on my Pentium 75 no worries. If what you make doesn't run decently in any modern language/framework on even a now antiquated PC, then there is a significantly greater problem in the code...

More CPU expensive AI would only be better (at least for Rebellion) :twisted: But otherwise I agree with you.

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One thing you can do to enable many people to work on 1 project using different languages and in disperate locations is to design your game in modules that communicate with each other via standard mechanisms.

 

For example, most peoples idea of a sequel will probably be more of the same, but better and more moddable. Hence we have a strategy element which if done cleverly, can consist largely of static images(like the original) and a 3D section which you need to use something like directX for; a directx wrapper such as http://darkgdk.thegamecreators.com could be worth a look....for £35.

 

It might be possible to implement these two game sections as entirely seperate programs that communicate with each other via XML. The basic premise would be that the strategy process could generate a load of XML describing all the details of the battle, spawn off a child process which would "run" the battle in 3D or whatever and then once the battle was finished, the child process would form some XML to return to the parent process which contained details of the result of the battle.

 

This way, with the XML format agreed, 2 people could work on the same project, or if some of you already have a working 3D engine, it could be incorporated into someone elses' purely strategy game which has no current 3D component with a minimum of effort.

 

Writing a 3D game like X-Wing takes different skills than writing a purely strategy game. Given that most of us are generally good in one or the other and are doing this in our spare time, an approach like this will give you a finished game which utilizes the skills of those involved to the full.

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  • 4 weeks later...
You still can't mix more languages together (into one code), can you? So it's nearly the same as using DLL libraries, but with slight performance penalty. Correct me, if I'm wrong.

 

Just to folow up on this;

 

I would say the performance hit would be pretty minimal, if any, as they would be looked after by the jitter.

 

However yes, they would still need to be compiled into packages/dlls.

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  • SWR Staff - Executive
All the .NET languages are compiled into the same intermediate code, before being translated in the instructions for the CPU. It's much like Java in that respect.
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