Tuesday, 19 October 2021

Abura Tan SM

This is an old roguelike project by Michael Blackney from 20 years ago. I refactored this in 2009 to SDL (1.0 version), but I think it's time to take a look at this again. It took couple of days to make changes for SDL2 which does have more differences than I remembered. Also for the join-macros I had to turn on "standard" macro property from Visual Studio and replace file finding with std::filesystem.

It does run, but I can't see anything. Possibly the font routine doesn't work properly, because if I replace the data with some random fill color you can see blocks of them on screen. The source code is the kind of C++ you never want to see. It's overly complex object-oriented style and has some annoying features like returning from each case label, leaving out breaks and the last return from end of the function. I think there are also user-made list and string classes which is always great fun.

As I remember it also has a bug which displays the level over the message area, but when the font routine is fixed we'll see if SDL2 fixes anything (the screen update works different way compared to SDL). But if I get this to run properly it might be an interesting project. This I'm going to upload to my Github which at the moment is empty. I need to use an external Git gui rather than Visual Studio, because I don't want git to mess up my projects. Git is awful to be honest.

Wednesday, 13 October 2021

The Object Class

I'm working on a new project which is going to be more like a traditional role-playing game. The nice thing about this is that I'm starting from zero and this time I'm able to think about how to implement things in a simple way. The programming language is still going to be C++, but I try to avoid complex classes and also use procedural style for "action" code.

I was reading about game objects and noticed an interesting comment in which the idea of generic "object" base class should be removed. With that you should consider different game objects as their own base classes - in this case movables, items and creatures. This idea is something I want to try, because it doesn't sound that bad and it will certainly remove some problems I've had with that type of implementation in both Teemu and Kaduria which are complexity and large amount of virtual functions.

If it does work I've been "wrong" about object base class for a long time. However object base class does work better (I guess) in situations where you need to write generic routines for game objects, because the virtual system can decide what to do with some type of object and you only need the base class for parameters etc. Then again, routines for creatures and items tend to be different, so it's interesting to see what happens.

Sunday, 12 September 2021

Banana Rogue 0.1

After about two years of work to refactor Advanced Rogue from C to C++ it finally compiles and runs. I did skip a step which is saving and loading function pointers of "daemons" (delayed actions), but it should not be that difficult to code later. The game does run, but... yeah, let's just say it has some rough edges to smooth out.

The SDL2 implementation doesn't replicate Curses perfectly so there are some problems like you can't see the enemies and item char is not removed from the screen when an item is picked up. The reason for that is quite complicated system of overlaid curses windows which in SDL2 act a bit different way. The game is so primitive that it doesn't have a level data buffer, it's simply using the screen to store level data.

However I find the game quite interesting, because it is so heavily concentrated on the RPG system and everything else is really simple. It's like the opposite of my projects and maybe some other projects as well, where the dungeon generation is overly important and the RPG system has got much less attention.

At this point I have to stop for a while, this is my gates of Moria where I take a while to contemplate this project. Obviously when I return it's time to clean it up and make it actually work which could be harder than it has been this far. My focus at the moment is Teemu 1.3 and somehow now it feels easier to work on a project that has much better code quality, because at least it's not holding you back.

Wednesday, 16 June 2021

Midsummer update

Banana Rogue: This project is doing well, I'm currently rewriting all linked list routines which is a big task, but far from impossible. As a bonus it's making save/load game much easier to implement. I like working on this project probably the most, because it's so bananas. The source code of Advanced Rogue is really old, but still manageable. I think it's way better than Nethack's source code.

Saladir: This project resembles Advanced Rogue, but the source code is quite bit cleaner. This also needs a new save/load and file routines etc. but this is on hold for now.

Teemu 1.3: Most of the hard work is done, but the bane of my existence or also called RPG system is still unfinished.

Brick Atelier: I have put some effort even to this project which is a tile editor. It's also going nicely, missing some key features which I'm working on (moving, scaling and rotating selection, brush pad etc.).

Ban from RogueTemple forums: I figured out I can read RogueTemple forums from my work (they even used some kind of IP banning to prevent that) and there was a thread concerning my permanent ban. In that Slash (moderator/owner of RT) says that I was not banned for SJW reasons... which is, well, a strange thing to say. As I said before, I was banned retroactively when the rules changed. I didn't break any new rules, there was no time to do that. Even better, I never had any problems before. I didn't get any shorter bans (well, at least that I can remember) and I was not warned about my messages. Some users didn't like me, because I was attacking their ideas about what a roguelike game is. If it makes me an asshole then I proudly want to be that. I know I can be abrasive, but in my mind I'm just passionate. I don't like people who try to make black appear white. It's not white, it's black. We all know what a roguelike game is, why even try to change it? Make your own game genre and call it whatever you want and stop trying to change the reality.

In a situation like this there is nothing you can do. Slash runs the forum, it's his call to ban anyone for any reason, but I didn't like how it happened. It was dirty and everyone should know it. Even if the ban would be removed I would never come back for what they did to me.

Saturday, 5 June 2021

My short Reddit visit

So I went to Reddit as username Ecirk and after I think 5 posts two of them were already deleted. The other was deleted by "automatic" spam filter and another one just disappeared. No explanations why. I think "they" realized it's me after they figured out Ecirk is Krice backwards. It's hilarious how petty these people are and how they run the show in social medias.

Reddit's rogulike dev would actually be quite ok if it did accept everyone in which it doesn't. You can also argue about Reddit's "social media" -style with some kind of arrows to vote something. I never understood up/downvotes, I just want to write messages with text that has some kind of meaning, you know, communicate with people. Most users are ok I guess, but it's those social injustice warriors and their ban hammer that ruins the day for everyone.

I predicted something like this would happen and was obviously right, as always. The problem in moderation is that somehow it's occupied by people with some ideology. I don't know how we could even prevent that other than removing moderators, but then the forums would fill with spam I guess. I'm just baffled about why they try to silence everyone with common sense? What they try to achieve with that? We know it's not going to be a brave new world if these people get to decide political issues etc. It's going to go south fast and hard.

I wont miss Reddit, it's like a forum but the ui is crappy and if you have "wrong" opinions it's impossible to bring them out without getting smashed by a ban hammer. I've sometimes laughingly stated that I will end up in rec.games.roguelike.development by myself and those arabic spammers. It will still be better than anything else we have.

Monday, 29 March 2021

The Secret Of Saladir

Back in the old days there were some interesting roguelike projects like Genrogue by Kornel Kisielewicz and there was also The Legend Of Saladir. It was a "thing" to have a major roguelike project that was going to be better than anything else, such a thing is I guess a nice dream to have for no-life programmer nerds. And obviously I had and still have my main project Kaduria, so I was in that same scene which now is mostly gone.

So, you can imagine my surprise when I was browsing github to find interesting projects to work on (like I'm doing with Advanced Rogue). The author had released Saladir's source code 8 years ago, and apparently no one knew or cared about it. However, sadly it's not open source, but then again neither is Teemu even the source code is available. Even worse, it's sad to find out that Saladir was never going to be the next major roguelike. The source code reveals a lot about the state of the project, let's just put it that way.

Sometimes I think the scene we had was more important than the games, because it was just a bunch of idiots dreaming about the next major roguelike. Obviously some of us knew what to do (Thomas Biskup with ADOM for example), but there were a lot of guys who didn't have a clue. I must admit I was one of those dudes, but my perseverance got me in where I'm now. Which does feel like I'm just in the beginning of my journey as a game developer.