Monday, 27 October 2008

Good News on Music Department

Recently (if you read the forums carefully you already know the name) Jasper aka DarkStalion has come to spend some time composing a main menu theme for jClassicRPG. He told that he'll help out and he now has returned with a fantastic piece of epic fantasy music. He's still working on it, but it's already 3 and a half minutes long. I'm a big fan of music like this for fantasy RPGs, and this one just fits so well. Jasper at his blog (which has other interesting contents as well) has shared the unfinished version so you can hear and comment on it. Go and check out!

Meanwhile another musician has contacted the project just today through one of my friend and he already sent some samples.

So hopefully soon we'll have new music in jClassicRPG!!

Wednesday, 22 October 2008

Storage Points for the Economics, 3D model integration

Working to add storage point generation to economics. Currently this means that I coding in the labyrinth part to scatter around chests in the depth of the mazes. :) It will lure the player in probably! :D The economics will know about their number of storage points. Also they are generating the world coordinates by overriding the base getStorageObjectPlaces method of Economics superclass. The storage points are where the so called Entity Common Wealth (the usable properties of the group that are not currently equipped on members) will be stored in different quantities in different storage objects (currently only chests). This implies that you will find only things in those storage objects that the group is possessing - or possessed til you've put your hands on it. :D

goq669 the new developer who joined to help out in some tasks is working on some enhancement of the UI part creating a SimpleLayout for easier page definition. Also he has started to work on the Options submenu of the main menu. It's going to serve for modification of game settings obviously.

Also I've integrated some old contributions (eyebat monster by Scofield and shortsword by andycon). Also added a model found on quadropolis created by deathguppie with CC-BY license, hellpig2. Luckily it's animated and in md5 format. :) Thanks for your precious work all out there!

PS: Forgot to mention a bunch of new audios were added as well. All in SVN for the testing. :)

Friday, 17 October 2008

Small steps - shaders, bugfixing, integrating contributions

A short list what's being done: I've been working to provide normal maps for already used textures with gimp's normal map plugin. It's not as good as I would like it, but it's usable with some experimenting. A few bugs (like slowly flying arrow/knife bug) on the list has been hunted down meanwhile. Parallax Shader has got some improvement like pointlight/attenuation support. Also tidbit has provided his nice new model green lizard (labeled 'Lizzie' on the forum :)) with a texture and after some community feedback and eyeballing it has become a part of the SVN repository! :) Thanks go to tidbit, and ppl on the forum!

If you happen to be good at 2D texture creation (for 3d models), and/or have talent or already created normal/specular map textures for some generally usable textures + you would like to help jClassicRPG then it would be highly appreciated if you help the project with some new wall etc. textures with normal/specular maps.

Also animators would be much welcome as we have multiple models that would need rig and/or animation! Come visit to forum for more info.

Tuesday, 14 October 2008

Parallax/Normal mapping support added to static batches

Been working on upgrading static batch elements with some shaders currently to make the maze parts looking good. Started with a new column with diffuse / normal map textures by Zphr. He used blender to model a high polygon column and then with the help of blender's baking and normal map facilities he created the diffuse texture and the normal map texture, and made a low poly undetailed version of the column. (After that seeing that the shader needs a specular map, I've created a very simple one out of the normal map texture by making it black and white and adding a bit of contrast to it.) Basic versions of a normal and a parallax shader of jME has been tailored to integrate into jClassicRPG. Check the screenshot, how low polygon walls and column can be made look more like high poly models with GLSL shaders.

Saturday, 11 October 2008

Yay, got it running with latest AMD fglrx driver

Finally, the testing on AMD/ATi is made possible! I've found my mistake, I was not cautious enough when was removing old remnants of volatile kernel modules (restricted drivers of ubuntu). I just renamed the dir to fglrx__, which apparently ruined my whole upgrading process, DKMS kernel module of higher version was ommitted... But now I rule the box again! Though seems that only the latest version (fglrx 8-9) lets me start any jme applications, like jcrpg. And so it is running on the brand new card...ready for boarding!!

Thursday, 9 October 2008

Monster leveling added, Struggling with ATi Card

Thanks to the generous first two donators of jClassicRPG I bought the AMD video card. It's a good working card, 2D is functioning now very nicely under Linux with the fglrx driver, but I have had no luck with the 3D part yet, so still struggling to fire it up...I bet it must be something related to some installer / configuration problem + the fact that I've previously installed nvidia drivers manually on that PC. (I even tried EnvyNG to no avail yet.)

Meanwhile I was programming the basics of so called GeneratedEntityMember leveling up, which should be called monster leveling for easier understanding. The creature's level (that are not PersistentMemberInstances = NPCs) will be depending on the group's level they belong to. Be aware: the boarman thugs and mages are appearing before you now skilled and with boosted attributes! :D - according to their level. All in SVN along with some concurrent use of hashmaps fix!

PS: okay, 3D is working now! I had to reinstall xorg parts (nvidia driver stole :)) and do some reinstall of fglrx driver. But unluckily jcrpg crashes jvm upon staring with that card + driver. I haven't seen such thing. I'm trying to solve this new mistery now with the help of jme forums.

Tuesday, 7 October 2008

[EDIT] Money donations reached limit - lead dev will purchase an AMD ATi card

This thread and this older discussion (MacOSX part) is pushing me to purchase a video card that otherwise I wouldn't buy (an AMD Sapphire Radeon HD3450 256MB DDR2 PCIe). (I mostly buy nVidia to make life easier as a linux user.) If you want to support the project's development and testing on AMD/ATi cards then consider donating some bucks with paypal. That way you can make me believe that there's a chance that open source development can nullify costs with the help of Free Open Source Software loving people and also I could continuously test the game on AMD/ATi cards. :) The project hasn't got any donations yet, but this is the first purchase that I would do only because of the project's need. The card would cost around 42$ or 30 Euros so the bar isn't raised too high. I do have that amount of money, but that purchase would represent my personal need only. Instead, let's see the real need of the project by own as you'll or will not show it to us. Can you people jump over that bar? I bet so (I'm superoptimistic)! :)

PS: As a first step I will add donation listing here in form of comments. (I plan to create a full list of donators as well.) First I will add them without name. If the person is willing to be listed with some kind of name (real or not), please drop me an email to illespal at gmail dot com with your real name (that should be in my paypal transaction log) so that I can verify, and add the name requested by you to the list of Donators. (It will be added to the SVN as well and to the releases.)

The donations have reached the limit needed for the video card and even got over it just in 5 hours!! (Read comments.) Big thanks to our first donators in the history of jClassicRPG!! I will buy the card in my favorite store.

Monday, 6 October 2008

Still around the maze + Use Skill/Item window

With help of our great modelers we're progressing in adding new contents to the labyrinth. While doing so I've created my first more complex texture for tidbit's treasure chest. I've exported the outline from blender and used gimp to cut something together. :) The maze code has been improved to contain the new Greek style columns made by tidbit.

Some fixes here and there plus the new Use Skill/Item window (key F6) are committed to the SVN. The trick was (as I've learned today it's something already done in an old c64 game Mars saga) to use a UI where all the characters are listed and you can set what you want to do with them separately (like in the combat window), and fire all the events in a single event. If you do so it will play like a combat round, all the effects and logs are the same, as the same function is called as in combat. It works nice and now it's possible to drink some potions, cast some spells on the party. :) You'll surely find it weird as modern games doesn't handle UI like that but personally I think it's quite comfortable - because you don't have to repeatedly select chars and it also remembers last choices.