Ok, so I’ve finally managed to get back to doing more testing on the ‘integrated’ texture shadow techniques this week (formerly known as ‘custom sequence’ texture shadows but I thought that was an ambiguous term). For those who haven’t been following this, ‘integrated’ shadows in Ogre are those where the shadowing calculation is done directly in the primary material of the receiver, and not done as additional passes. The easiest way to use Ogre’s texture shadows (and the only way previously) is to use the non-integrated methods, which basically do one of two things - re-render the receivers in the scene with a modulative pass per light, or break apart your receiver materials into ambient, per-light and decal (albedo) render passes in order to build shadow-masked lighting up additively.
Anyone seen the Lost Planet short trailer they’re showing on TV? Here’s the online version if not. Come on. I mean, come on. Now, I’m sure it’s great if you’re one of those people who smokes 50 a day and needs to make money doing voice overs in between cheap slasher films, but to start a AAA game trailer off this way demonstrates an almost fatal concentration of cheese. But that’s only the start.
Darn, Damien has tagged me with one of those chain-blogging things that I can’t possibly ignore, save my online credibility be called into question. This one is dubbed ‘Five things you didn’t know about me’. Now, it’s of course really tempting to make stuff up. After all, if the whole point is that you didn’t know already, then given that you’re almost certainly halfway across the globe from me, and thus concrete verification is slim possibility, I can arguably get away with anything.
I’m guessing that due to the cultural differences, Nintendo’s execs aren’t sitting back with a fat cigar and a glass of port, over-indulging themselves and generally generally enjoying how much goddam money they’ve managed to make last year, but you could understand it if they did. Sales figures for December 2006 are coming in, and my goodness did Nintendo rake it in. In terms of generating raw cash, everything seems to be in their favour.
Well, the negotiations over the ogre3d.org server upgrade I mentioned a few weeks ago have reached a conclusion, and I eventually chose Dedipower. Given that all three of the UK providers I shortlisted had good reputations, it eventually came down to the nitty-gritty of the deal, and it certainly proved to be worth hanging on for a while and having several round-trips with all the parties bidding for the custom. In the end Dedipower made me the best offer, which will see ogre3d.
Ok, so I’ve had a Wii for a week now (insert childish snigger here) and thought I’d post my initial impression. It’s difficult because due to the continuing extreme stock shortages, I’m still missing an extra controller and Zelda, but here’s my view on what I have, ie Wii Sports, Super Monkey Ball - Banana Blitz, and the online services so far. Firstly, it’s really quite incredible just how accurate and sensitive the controllers are.
I’ve been going nuts on C++ for the last week so I took a break tonight to do a couple of things I’ve been meaning to do for ages. Firstly, to make our Pro Ogre 3D Programming book link in the sidebar of ogre3d.org country-sensistive, so that instead of only getting the link & price from Amazon.co.uk, it behaves differently depending on your country. Secondly, since people are always asking about books I recommend on 3D / C++, I’ve embedded a country-sensitive Amazon store in the Ogre site via a new Books link, containing the books I personally recommend most at the moment.
Well, I’ve been busting a gut trying to get everything sorted for Eihort but it’s still slipping. I spent almost all of last week processing patches that had been queued up for it, and in some cases ended up either rewriting or making significant changes or extensions to them. My current work item is to do with GLSL - whilst I’d already improved things for GLSL recently, what with the unified program definitions and some array work, there are still some issues with supporting auto-bound arrays due to the fact that in GLSL, vertex and fragment programs require linking together before you can grab parameters out of them.
I’ve never liked 3D platform games. Ok, I’ve never properly played the crowning title in this genre, Super Mario 64, so perhaps I can’t really pass judgement - although I might grab it on the Wii virtual console to see. Every 3D platformer I have tried, including the more recent Super Mario Sunshine, have always felt too imprecise, and too subject to variation caused by the positioning of the camera. As I mentioned a while back, the only thing wrong with Psychonauts, which was one of my favorite games of last year, was that it was a 3D platformer at its core.
So, it was finally my own personal Wii-E day today. When I got back from a doctors appointment this morning, the green light on my answering machine blinking excitedly at me, as if it shouting ‘guess what, guess what?’. The local specialist non-chain games shop had let me down with my original pre-order so I’d placed another one with Woolies, where a friend had pre-ordered a couple of weeks after me originally and still got one before xmas, much to my annoyance.