Tag Archives: random

2013 – Final posting – Dwelling in randomly generated mobile Dungeons

Another year has (almost) passed, and as with the previous years I’ll keep up the tradition of publishing a final posting before heading into 2014. From a personal point-of-view, 2013 wasn’t thad bad (though still far from perfect) like some of the years before. I still earn my money as a sofware developer using delphi and love my job, and recently I even bought the house I’ve been spending most of my 32 years in (though there is still a bit of renovation to be done, but the house itself is in a good shape).

As far as my personal programming stuff goes, those of you that follow my blog may have (hopefully) noticed that I moved away from Delphi and went over to Java, mainly because of mobile development for Android devices. I’ve been wanting to develop for smartphones and tablets for some time and the move was easier than I expected. It didn’t take long to get a gripe of the Java syntax, and together with Eclipse I’m pouring out lines of code like never before. The more I work with Java (and Eclipse), the more I realize how far behind Delphi has fallen. It’s sad to see that Embarcadero seems to focus on the wrong areas of Delphi, and instead of fixing their base and giving the community a free Delphi version they hold onto stuff like FireMonkey and decided to release a new Delphi version every 6 months. Though quick release cycles can be good, I don’t think they’re suited for such an expensive development tool. But well, if you take a look around the hobbyist community you’ll quickly notice that nobody cares about Delphi anymore. Especially for OpenGL development, people either moved to Lazarus and/or Free Pascal or (like me) moved over to another programming language. The sad thing about this is that communites I’ve used to be active an have gotten pretty quit over the past few years.

And no posting without any programming stuff! Since I’m totally not into that christmas and holiday stuff I had plenty of time for coding during the recent days, and so I decided to do something gaming / OpenGL related for Android. And therefore I ported the random dungeon generator I described in this article over to Java, and though it’s still in it’s very early stages, you can already walk around randomly generated dungeons on a mobile device.

dungeoncrawler_2013-12-29-204317 dungeoncrawler_2013-12-29-204526 dungeoncrawler_2013-12-29-204538

This is my first Java project that uses several different techniques. It’s based on OpenGL ES 2.0, uses different shaders for e.g. per-pixel lighting (which makes for easy flickering torches), a texture loader, a (yet simple) touchbased OpenGL GUI and much more. I don’t know if I’ll make it into a complete game, but I want to at least release a techdemo. I’ve got plenty of ideas and want to make heavy use of gestures for e.g. solving puzzles, making attacks, etc. I’m also not sure about the setting yet and still swaying between a more common theme (medieval, like the Eye of the Beholder-Series), something in the future (maybe a trapped cyborg in a futuristic factory) or something dark, psychologic and eerie in the vein of Trugbild. Maybe I’ll even open-source it 😉

And thus ends 2013, may 2014 bring forth more Android-related stuff (as long as Cthulhu won’t wake up from it’s eternal slumber cthulhu)

In addition to wishing all of my readers and friends a happy and healthy 2014 I’d like to dedicate this posting to a very special person that’s going through a hard time, seing that makes me pretty sad and it’s even harder not knowing how to really help 🙁

First dungeon crawler prototype (HD Video)

Although it took me longer than expected I recently got a first prototype of a dungeon crawler, based on my recenlty published random dungeon article, polished up far enough to show it to the public.  Actually one of the biggest issue holding it back were the textures. It uses parallax (bump) mapping for giving flat surfaces a realsitic 3D look (it’s pretty much an extension to bump mapping), and for that technique you not only need a color map and a normal map but also a heightmap for each texture. After not being able to find good ones around the net I decided to quickly do the textures myself.

A quick overview of what’s in this prototype : As always it uses OpenGL and let’s you walk around a randomly generated dungeon. Lighting and parallax mapping are done using shaders (so there is no real limit to the number of light sources) and all physics and collision stuff is handled by a recent beta version of the Newton Game Dynamics engine. One of the new features is an included character controller that allows you to setup a physically correct playerbody that interacts with the environment within a few lines of code. But that’s not the only use of Newton in that prototype, as I’m also using it’s raycast functionality to determine visibility for the map. That was a pretty natrual choice as I already submitted the geometry of the dungeon to newton for creating a static physic body, so adding raycasting for visibility check was pretty easy and works fine.

Other than that, there is not much to say about this very early prototype. I’m still not sure if I’ll ever make a game based on all that random dungeon stuff, although I already wrote down a nice and basic game design that’s not your traditional dungeon crawler.

So in the meantime enjoy this video I just uploaded, and please watch id in HD. Sadly it’s only 30 fps (originall recorded with 60fps) but it should be sufficent to get an impression :

Random Dungeon Generation

After deciding to take a small break from working on “Phase 2” for Projekt “W”, I decided to do something I’ve been thinking about since I played my first dungeon crawler (Eye of the Beholder) over 15 years ago :  a random dungeon generator. Back in that time I already gave it a shot but nothing really ever came out of it, so I decided to try again. But this time it worked out really nice and I now have a fine random dungeon generator, creating nice random dungeons that could be used in a game. Actually I even have an idea for a game using this, though if it ever sees the light of the day it will be a very unique take at the “genre” and it won’t be a big project (cause at some point I’d like to release “Phase 2”).

And since just telling you that I made something like a random dungeon generator wouldn’t really be worthy of a whole news posting I also wrote a rather extensive article on that subject. It’s not a tutorial or including the source code, but it’s rather a journal on how I started from scratch trying to create a random dungeon generator. So maybe it’s interesting to some, but since I also talk about how I do it people may also get some ideas out of that article on how to do their own random dungeon generators. Note that the generator is neither finished nor that my solution is the perfect one, but I think it’s a nice take on the whole subject.

Read the “Random Dungeon Generation” article.

And also note that this is my first article, but I hope to write more articles concerning game programming, game design and such in the future.