<<Previous Archive | Next Archive>>

We didn't win

The sourceforge.net community awards 2007 are over, and unfortunately we didn't win. Nevertheless, thanks to anyone who voted. The winners in the categories where Irrlicht was nominated are ScummVM and Audacity, two nice projects, I am using them as well. :) All winners can be viewed here. Although in addition to Irrlicht, Ogre and Crystal Space were nominated too, no 3D engine did win an award, too bad. I think the reason is that 3D engines have a bit smaller user base.
The all-over best project this year was 7-zip by the way, a nice piece of sofware, about which I have blogged some days ago, funnily. :)



Lost Video Game Trailer Available - using CryEngine

As Lost fan there is no way around blogging this: An ingame video of the game based on the television series Lost has just been released - and it looks like they are really using the CryEngine 3d Engine (Crytek/Farcry):



I know, movie and tv based games usually suck. And maybe this one will too. But in my opinion the Cryengine is a very good choice for this game which was specially written for this kind of scenes, so maybe the game developers had some time to create a nice game play too. The game is planned to be released in q1 2008.



irrKlang for Mac OS X released

As already announced on gamedev.net, irrKlang 1.0RC1 was just released, including support for Mac OS X. Happy downloading.



Spiderpig!

Just returned from the simpsons movie austrian premiere. We had VIP tickets (a totally different story) and so we were invited to the after-party, where donuts and beer was free. Totally distastrous. But the movie was brilliant.



Some Stripped Technical Details From the Unreal Engine 3 Lawsuit

Now that I run my own game development related company, I'm more interested in reading business related game news than I was already before. Especially when it is about middleware licensing, which I do now as well. The legal dispute between Epic Games and Silicon Knights over the Unreal Engine 3 [my favourite 3D engine by the way, except Irrlicht of course ;)] caught my attention recently, because the whole 54 pages of the lawsuit are available online as .pdf file:

Silicon Knights is complaining in there about missed deadlines of the XBox360 and PS3 ports, missing promised technical features and according to Silicon Knights, Epic was more interested in their own products (UT2007 and Gears of War) instead of providing their clients with new UE3 versions. The document reveals some few technical details of the Unreal Engine 3: Silicon Knights wanted multithreading support, but Epic didn't deliver this according to SK. They also claim to have discovered non expected huge memory usage and long loading times. Interesting: They talk about the Unreal Engine doing garbage collection. But I think they simply mean something like a cache freeing long unused media like textures or similar: "Upon information and belief, the target for garbage collection in the Engine is that that it will run for 5 milliseconds every 30 seconds to 2 minutes." But they had to run it "every 25 seconds for 30 to 50 milliseconds". Also, according to them, UE3 seemed not to be able to meet the start up time requirement demanded by the Microsoft TCR. They write that UE3 usually does dynamic memory based particle systems but that for Epic's game it uses particle pools which pissed off Silicon Knights. Maybe an idea to extend Irrlicht into that direction, by the way. They also didn't like that UE3 wasn't able to draw terrain although promised according to them. (As far as I know, UE was never able to do terrain until now, if you have seen terrain in an UE based game, it was a static mesh). And there are some details about the lighting model: According to Silicon Knights, lighting in UE3 was planned to be possible with 3 or 4 lights affecting each model, with some very low amount of precomputation for static lights. But then, according to Silicon Knights, "the prescribed lighting model for the Engine was to pre-calculate as much of the scene as possible and consolidate the light effects into three light vectors per vertex while lighting the character from a single point light that approximates the overall scene lighting..". Which is not that impressive, in my opinion.

The document is long but interesting to read, and if you can read between the lines, it sounds like a normal game project with the usual software problems mixed with some bad communication between both parties. But because now other developers start to complain anonymously too, maybe there is more behind this. I hope we'll see a nice UT2007 anyway soon.

Fortunately, until now I had no problems with licensing issues like that with my company yet, all clients seem to be very happy and I try to keep it that way and hope it will stay like that. :)



Jirr 1.3.1 released!

Stefan Dingfelder just released Jirr 1.3.1, the Irrlicht 3D engine for Java. It is now compatible with Irrlicht 1.3.1, and includes more demos such as a physics demo using JNewton, and an examples on how to load and display .irr files (the ones saved by irrEdit, the irrlicht 3D scene editor). It also now supports JDK1.6 and script languages (Javascript). Also included is a java wrapper for the audio library 'irrklang', nice.
Stefan is also thinking about adding Jirr Applet support, which would mean Irrlicht running inside Web browsers. Sounds very nice in my ears and would open a lot of new possibilities.



Sweating in third person view

It's to hot to blog anything meaningful. This morning, it already had 30°, and according to orf.at we will see the thermometer show 38° or even 39° today. Hurray climate change. But with the recently presented Avatar Machine, it is possible to see yourself sweating in third person view, at least.



Your last chance to vote for us

These are the last few hours where it is still possible to vote for Irrlicht, as I already blogged. No idea if we can make it, but every vote counts. So vote now if you haven't yet! Ok, this was the last time I bugged you with this, we'll see next week if it worked. And even if not, we have some other nice news for you then. :)



irrKlang Mac OS X preview demo

For those who are interested, I created an irrKlang Mac OS X preview demo (.zip file, 344 KB). It only works on Intel Machines because I only own an x86 Mac so far, but if people are interested in an irrKlang PPC version, I'll create one too. It looks like this:

Please download it and try it out, and report possible problems.
If you start the demo using the Mac OS Finder, click the .command file to start, it ensures the working directory is set the the one where you extracted the archive. If you click the Test binary directly instead, the working directory will be set to your home directory, and the app won't find the sound files. Don't know if there is a better way to do this in Mac Os, but this works at least.



Bloodiest Irrlicht Game Ever

I think I just played the bloodiest Irrlicht and irrKlang based game ever. There are some better shots on gamedev.net as well. They are not pretty, but pretty gory.



Lies

I wonder what people will think in a few dozen of years after watching this video again.



My annually don't-bug-me rant

It's the time of the year again - my inbox gets fuller. A huge part of the Irrlicht Engine users are pupils and students which now have some more time, and some people do not care to take a look into the forum but prefer to send me various questions - from 'how do I write a game' to 'what is the correct way to set the second parameter in the shader when running Irrlicht on D3D10 class hardware in $some-operating-system-which-I-have-never-heard-of-before$". :)
So also if I'm usually answering (yes, everyone gets an answer anyway if his mail wasn't classified as spam) with a short "please take a look into the forum, I have no time, sorry", I am a bit slower answering mails these days. The positive aspect: I also get to see more nice pictures of projects using Irrlicht. An extract:

Infiltrated Neophite by Vinicius Marques Terra, takes place in the University UFMG, No lights, no shadows, early A.I.:



Amulet of tricolor, a cool looking commercial game by WiredPlane Labs team, Razinkov Ilya. It will soon be published in Russia:


Yep, it is a 2D game, done with Irrlicht which is a 3D engine :). It looks as it also has some 3D effects, but I'm not sure. Words from the programmer behind this game: "During development i was never dissapointed in my choice - Irrlicht is really great engine to develop on, flexible and stable". Nice :) (related forum thread)

Some unnamed project by Alexander Fürll:



Don't hesitate to send us links and shots from your games, I'll blog about them, in most cases. Be sure to include some short description and a link. Always nice to see projects done using Irrlicht.



Please vote for us (again)

As I have noticed, some people still didn't vote for us. Come on, please do this if you like Irrlicht, it's just a few clicks. If you haven't a sourceforge account yet, its just about three clicks more. Would be very nice of you, thanks! Vote now. (Background story)



Singen Singen Singen!

One of my favourite comedy group is Monty Python and I like all of their movies. But I didn't know their Holzfäller Song (youtube video) until now, where they sing in german (with english subtitles) although they obviously don't speak german. Hilarious, especially if you are a german native speaker. :)



First Time MacOS C++ Development

As previously mentioned on this blog, I am now the proud owner of a mac mini. The reason for this is that I wanted to improve mac support for Irrlicht and port irrKlang to this platform (soon to come) but also because I had not much experience with macs until now and was a bit curious. So here is a short summary of the first impressions from a developer perspective.

The MacOSX graphical user interface is a bit different, and it took a bit more time (some hours) for me to get used to it, in contrast to the switch for example from windows to KDE or Gnome. Shortcuts are different (Apple-Key instead of Control), the minimize/maximize/close buttons do different things, the dock is new but feels useful.
Cool: the mac mini comes with a remote control, so you can use it as DVD player, sound system and multimedia station. Nice idea.

Programs: The operating systems includes a useful set of tools like DVD player, text editor, mail client, music player and similar. Of course there is always something missing, and I quickly installed Opera which - for me - loads and displays web pages about 4 times faster than Safari, the self proclaimed "fastest web browser on any platform". When I searched for a nice IM client for macos (I decided to use Adium), I found that the amount of free applications for macos seems to be a bit more limited. But who cares, I have everything I need now. I can recommend Seashore as image editor, it's based on Gimp.

Development tools: MacOS offers a free (after forced registration) C++ IDE named XCode, and it really is nice. Actually, I think it includes the first usable gdb based debugger frontend I've ever seen, most others I used in the last years were crappy, slow or didn't work. Also the project management in XCode is very nice, for example you can just drop in cxx/cpp and .h files or packages and press build, no need to add include search paths or similar in most cases. Need to play around with it a bit more, but until now I like it.

BTW: I totally like the fact that MacOSX is based on Unix, i needed for example only about one hour to get my sound library irrKlang to compile on it. It doesn't play sounds yet, but I should only need to write an CoreAudio based output driver for it. Once this is done I'll publish an alpha version, but it could take still some weeks because I am a bit busy with other projects currently.



Monkey Island Short Version

Just found Monkey Island as a summarized flash version, unfortunately in german only but very well done.



Heavy transport

Just passed by the National Bank of Austria where two huge money transporters arrived, guarded by police road blocks, escorted by a handful of police cars and a helicopter. Lots of people where watching this. Unusual to see something like this in a country where the president is used to walk to his office and members of the parliament arrive there via bike or common taxicabs, without bodyguards. :)



Discovering new worlds

It's no secret anymore, dani just revealed my latest acquisition on her blog. (Death to the traitor! :) ) I've played around with it now for some days and I like it, altough I have some troubles with my keyboard and I needed some hours to get used to all the new shortcuts and the slight different user interface. I also already wrote some small test apps in C++, going to blog a small personal review soon.



Social networks distribution

Just found a nice map of the distribution of social networking websites over the world, such as orkut, myspace, or studivz.

Too bad it doesn't include their business brother pages such as xing or linkedin. But it is interesting anyway. For example I didn't know that orkut is only dominant in brazil and india now, once I had an account there too. And interesting that studivz is listed in Austria and Germany as primary social network page, although it is only intended to be used by (ex)students. (Yep, I have an account there too, add me if you like.)



Irrlicht Nominated for Community Choice Awards

Thanks to all of you, Irrlicht has been nominated for the Sourceforge.net Community Choice Awards! Now you need to vote for the nominees, please go to the nomination voting page and vote for Irrlicht again, in the categories "Best Project for Multimedia" or if you like "Best Project for Gamers" in addition.





C-Base

WTF is c-base? It got linked today by some blogs I am reading so that I finally also clicked on the link. It looks like it needs money. But what caught my real attention was this part on the page:

05.07. Do 21:30 - 22:30 Programmieren mit Irrlicht-3D

Looks like a real-world seminar about programming with Irrlicht. Wondering who is doing this. I didn't know anything about it until today.



Dropping Support for Irrlicht.Net

Irrlicht.NET is a wrapper written in Managed C++, making Irrlicht available for .NET languages such as C#, VisualBasic and so on. I started this some years ago out of interest and fun. It works and some games already have been written with it, but it has a lot lesser functionality than the original Irrlicht Engine, and unfortunately, I poorly supported it. So it's time to end this misery: I'm dropping support for Irrlicht.NET completely.
But this actually is good news: Irrlicht.NET CP is an alternative, external project and does what Irrlicht.NET was intended to do, but better. If you want to use Irrlicht in .NET, try this. You can also use Irrlicht.NET CP under Mono (this wasn't possible with Irrlicht.NET because Mono doesn't support managed C++ or mixed mode assemblies) and do nice things like extending scene nodes, access the whole GUI stuff and similar. I tried out Irrlicht.NET CP for the first time a week ago and I really like it. Irrlicht.NET CP also supports Irrlicht 1.3.1 and we also hope to include it in future Irrlicht SDKs instead of Irrlicht.NET if possible.



300 Spartans on a Plane

Youtu^H^H^H^H^H Yahoo Video of 300 Spartans on a Plane.