I just added a new shadow technique to OGRE, namely additive texture shadows, bringing the total number of techniques available to 4 (modulative stencil, additive stencil, modulative texture and additive texture). This technique allows you to gain the benefit of the additional lighting accuracy you get by using masked-out additive lighting, whilst using texture-based shadows which are more GPU-friendly than stencils. As before you can of course use custom caster & receiver shaders, and custom shadow texture formats, in order to implement more complex shadow setups such as depth shadow mapping.
For Gods sake, why are those regulating the US patent system incapable of determining the difference between a genuine inventive step, and a bean-counter just trying to cash in by using flamboyant wording about something utterly, pathetically trivial? Case in point is Creative this week rattling their sabre (or should I say toy rattle, because that would suit their mentality better) about a patent they have over “selection by the user of a least one track in a portable media player as a user navigates through a hierarchy using three or more successive screens”.
Isn’t it weird how when one side of your face is anaesthetised, half your toungue thinks a cold drink is actually hot? I spent a good few minutes chugging a cold blue Powerade and marvelling at this bizarre effect. The fact that I can drink said beverage again without having to be peeled off the ceiling proves that yes, Mr Lower Left Molar has received his re-injection of metallic amalgam and is feeling like a new tooth.
You might have seen the recent Slashdot post about Multiverse, a new MMOG platform getting a bit of press at the moment. Well, it turns out that their client uses Axiom (now merged with Realmforge since leedgitar left), which is a C# port of OGRE. It’s a shame they didn’t use OGRE directly, since Axiom always trailed behind OGRE a while, and I can only assume Realmforge hasn’t made that lag up completely yet (I may be wrong though).
Well, this was a welcome surprise - one of our French users pointed out that the French gaming portal, JeuxVideo, today had 2 OGRE-powered games featured on their front PC page at once, Ankh and Pacific Storm 😀Because this obviously won’t last as more articles come up, I’ve saved it for posterity (click for full page): For those of you who can read french, here’s the full previews: Ankh | Pacific Storm.
It was eleven o’clock last night and I’d just had a cup of tea. Pretty uneventful you’d think, Englishman has tea, perhaps had I been even more traditional there might have been some checkered pygamas and/or smoking jacket and a copy of The Times involved too, but no, just a good old steaming mug of the brown nectar. Until my tooth starting yelling blue murder - loudly. You wouldn’t have thought that a tooth had a good pair of lungs on it, but this one did.
I was pleased to learn today that Ankh has picked up two awards at the German Developer Awards in the last few days, for Best Game and Best Soundtrack. Well done to all the team at Deck13, it’s great to see and I’m dying to see the English version in January. I hope you remember to send me that free copy like you promised Thorsten 😉 English language reviews are rare at the moment but the scores coming in from German sites are very good - invariably in the high 80s and very close to the review scores given by the same sources to more high-profile games like Farenheit.
I’m just about to commit the final part of the implementation of another one of my TODO items in Dagon, ‘Custom Render Queues’. OGRE has always used the concept of a render queue to build up a list of things to be rendered in the frame, partitioned by ‘queue group’ to enable separation of things like skies, overlays and custom effects where ordering is important, groups the ‘solids’ by pass state to minimise render state changes, and orders transparent items by descending view depth.
After a week and a half of 1.0.6 being available, there have been roughly 16000 total downloads, and 8000 downloads of the source / SDK releases (and that’s about 20Gb per day including other downloads like tools, fact fans). Breaking down the numbers is interesting - it doesn’t reflect the whole OGRE community since the more adept users tend to get it directly from CVS, but it’s indicative of the more mainstream use perhaps.
Mario Kart DS arrived yesterday and I spent a fair portion of the evening playing it - this in itself bodes well since it’s rare these days that I’ll play a game for a long time. First impressions are very good - most of the tracks ‘feel’ very appropriate for what I would consider to be a good MK game - tight courses with lots going on, and plenty of opportunity for gaining advantage through power sliding and other little tricks.