Category GameDev

Random calendar generation from planet orbital parameters

In this article I want to show you a small proof of concept where we generate from scratch an alien calendar. The difference from other random calendar generators that just put random days and random month is that, in this tool, we can specify as input the orbital parameters of the planet and satellite and generate a calendar that makes sense. How could be the calendar for that planet orbiting a super-massive star?

PCG without a Computer: Combinatorial Literature

For us computer scientists and game developers, Procedural Content Generation is directly connected with computers and algorithms. It seems such a modern thing! In reality, the exploration of the “combinatorial nature of art and human thoughts” is a much older concept. Probably, the most interesting and early writing on “PCG” is the doctoral dissertation of Gottfried Leibniz, De Arte Combinatoria (On the Combinatorial Art) (1666) in which he exposed the main idea that “all truth are nothing but combinations of a relatively small number of simple concepts.

How to manage a Videogames Bibliography in LaTeX

There is a common question in academia for people working on videogames: “Is there a consensus on how to cite videogames in academic papers?". Obviously not, there is no consensus and probably never will. However, I will try to show you a solution to this problem that I enjoyed a lot in the last months. It is clear, it is customizable and it is the most formal way I’ve found to do that.

THREE.js Shader Loading from External File

As usual, trying to nicely separate into different files the various application parts in JavaScript is a titanic challenge. This time, I wanted to separate the “.frag” and “.vert” shader programs into different files that I can load at runtime (instead of putting them into the HTML like a savage). For some reason, there is no easy out-of-the-box way to do that. On the internet, there is a small library, but it depends on JQuery and I think it is insane to load JQuery on top of THREE.

Procedural Generation in the Post No Man's Sky Era

I think the time is ready to talk about Procedural Contents Generation (PCG) in the post No Man’s Sky era. I’m talking about “era” for a good reason: No Man’s Sky huge failure will definitely mark an era in the history of PCG, and not for a good reason. Players’ perception on PCG has been severely hurt by how badly NMS delivered its contents. Probably, this will be the end of PCG as a marketing buzz-word.

On Designing Games for Infinite Players

When you design a game, one of the most important aspect to take into account is the number of players. Games can be designed for a single player, two players, four players or thousands of player (like in MMOs) and this decision has a huge impact in the technical and design requirements. But it is not just choosing a number. The “number of players” parameter cannot be arbitrarily moved at will.

On the procedural generation of a proto-language

As you probably know, last week I was at the DiGRA-FDG conference in Dundee, Scotland. The conference ended last week, but I have the urge to add something to a really interesting presentation I’ve attended during the first day at the workshop on Procedural Contents Generation. Before FDG, I was reading a small book on how the Chinese language has evolved during the centuries. It is extremely interesting. Especially if we look at the clear and wonderful evolution from pictures on paleolithic wood artifacts to the modern Mandarin Language.

Back from Nucl.ai 2016: A small report

I’m back! During the last week, I had a beautiful experience as a volunteer at the Nucl.ai 2016 conference, one of the nicest Game AI related conferences in Europe. I like this conference. It has a very informal atmosphere and both speakers and attendees are incredibly friendly and very willing in giving advice. You can go there like a complete no-one (for instance, like me) and you can speak and have a beer with Lead AI programmer in Triple-A games, in top notch industries like Google, Blizzard or Epic as if they are your friends.

Quick Dev Tips: Pixel-Perfect Scaling of a Phaser game

As you may know, I am in the middle of developing a demo for some Smart Pathfinding, and I’m using Phaser and TypeScript for it. Unfortunately, as soon as I started coding a couple of days ago, I quickly found a problem. How can I do pixel-perfect scaling of the game? The tileset I’m using is very small (16x16 pixels tiles) and I needed to scale them at least 3 times to make them visible on a big screen.

Basic Bootstrap for Phaser.io and Typescript Game Development

In the last period, I’m really enjoying TypeScript. It is typed, can be used in a functional way without effort, it like a C# for the Web, in short, I love it. For this reason, I started converting some old Phaser.io demo in TypeScript, for fun. So, why I’m writing here? To solve two main problems. First, the TypeScript guide in the Phaser.io web page is really outdated. Second, there are a lot of “template” project fo Phaser.