I was thinking about making this working exclusive for the grass in the terrain, but decided that a more generic approach would be better: Just click a checkbox on any material, and that thing will be moved by the wind. That way, also the leaves of trees can be moved too. Maybe also flags or similar. I still have to make this work well with the rest of the material system, so that it also works with lighting, fog, and other platforms like WebGL and Android, etc, but it is a nice start.
game engine and my survival game on Steam, I am getting quite a lot of requests for free steam keys. Some of these requests are valid, made by nice youtubers and twitchers, but a lot of them are made by scammers, pretending to be a popular youtuber or similar but easy to make out to be an impostor, trying just to get a handful of free keys, in order to sell them. If you have a game on steam, you likely know what I mean.
So, how to get rid of those? Simply ignoring them doesn't seem to help. So I created a key generator, which generates fake steam keys (=just a random combination of letters and numbers) to send them:
I hope that when they sell them, and it turns out the key is invalid, they will get into trouble. What do you think? Good idea? I'm not sure. Feel free to use this generator or give me any feedback.
For most objects like the leaves in trees, this isn't a serious problem, most people won't even notice. But for important, fine grained stuff like wire mesh fence as above, this is certainly not wanted. There are some simple workarounds to this problem:
- Edit the image and make the alpha channel broader and sharper. But this probably makes your texture look much uglier.
- Adjust the alpha testing reference value for your material. This might work, but if you are unlucky, it doesn't look that nice.
- Disable mipmapping. This looks usually quite nice, but it impacts performance quite a lot
The result could probably be adjusted a bit, but for me, it looks ok for now. There is no performance impact when rendering this and it is also not slower to generate the mipmaps at all.
For a very simple and badly filtered mipmap, I was originally calculating a pixel for the next level like this:
a /= 4; r /= 4; g /= 4; b /= 4; newColor.set(a, r, g, b);
But now I'm doing it this way:
const float refValue = 0.65f; a = (int)( (amax*(1.0f - refValue)) + ((a / 4.0f) * refValue) ); r /= 4; g /= 4; b /= 4; newColor.set(a, r, g, b);
Maybe I'll add this feature into my game engine as well, so that other people will profit from this as well in the future.
- On a popular discussion website, I was wondering why my submission links no longer were upvoted, and commented to. Was my stuff suddenly not interesting anymore? I tried looking at the site from my mobile phone, and noticed that my submission wasn't visible. It was only there when I was logged in. So clearly, someone shadow banned me. What the hell? Why? I could write down a huge rant with the title "corporate censorship" now, but in short: Shouldn't social media work with the people deciding what they want to read? That's where the up (and down) vote buttons are for after all.
- I had 30 minutes of free time and wanted to play a game on Steam. "You need to update first!". Ok. Steam starts downloading a couple of gigabytes for a patch of a game. Which takes about 3 hours on my rural internet connection. Which leaves me -2.5 hours of my free time. So much for playing a game.
- I forgot my paypal password. The dialog for sending you a new password contains 5 different possibilities (Email, SMS, Call, etc). It is written in a font that big, so that the 'OK' button is below the bottom of the screen. But there is no scroll bar. And the mouse wheel doesn't do anything. So I cannot click onto 'OK'. I actually have to open the developer tools and adjust the CSS font size so that the Paypal dialog works. I bet this works nicely on mobiles and PCs with very big screens. But not on my PC.
As software developer, frustrating stuff like this has become the daily norm for me. The more complex stuff you have to do with software, the more stuff is breaking in hilarious ways. I may be getting old, but I feel software isn't doing anymore for me what it was supposed to do: Getting out of my way and make my life easier.
I'm not sure how to improve this mess which is how software works today. Maybe we should just get rid of the "wait for the next update" and "if it compiles - ship it" culture. Or maybe it's just time to die for me. I'm probably too old to make sense of all this.
I like how he is experiencing the game and the features:
This was exactly how I hoped people would play the game. But there are others of course, for example a few weeks ago I saw a youtuber standing in the landscape and commenting on how ugly the trees, the grass, the walls in the buildings, the sky and everything looks. After doing this for about 15 minutes, he was slowly dying of thirst because he didn't look for food or water, and just kept on talking about the uglyness of the game. When he finally died because of this, he declared that the game sucked because he died.
Not sure what to make of this. I improved the graphics since then a bit, but I'm still confused about all this.
RocketCake. It includes some neat new features, like support for text shadows:
Which was interesting to implement. For example, the specification says that it doesn't give the exact way to implement this, but no pixel in the result image may not deviate by something like 5% from a certain specification. Ha. :)
Besides lots of other new stuff, I also rewrote the rendering algorithm so that website editing is now much, much faster if you are using many or big images. Previously, this was very slow on some systems.
Hope you like it!
offer a discount on some of my products for a few days. This year, there are 18 products on sale. Eighteen! Until a few days ago, I haven't realized that I have created that many products so far at all.
The sale page is a bit more structured than last year and I even made it responsive. But the probably more interesting part is that I give away all products for -50%, some even for -75%. That's quite a lot. But it's only for a few days.
Hopefully I am giving a few people a nice start into 2017 that way.
Happy new year!