Archive for iPhone

Beware alien vegetation!

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , on August 9, 2010 by bersaelor

So, at first I thought I’d just add a 3D Model of a thorned vine (still visible in the screenshot), but appearently, a little less 3D and a nice veined texture for the infected tile might do a much better job.

You can also see the new Interface-Element in the lower right, that always has the color of the active player!

Saving Battery Power in a turn-based game

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , on August 2, 2010 by bersaelor

I got inspired by a post on the toucharcade-forums by ed_welch who describes how he throttles FPS manually to the minimum value any animation needs to run.

Now I figured, I could render my game with 1 FPS as long as nothing happens, so I changed my code the following way:

  • I start the game with a frameInterval of 60.
  • Once I get a “touchesBegan” I go up to 2, that is 30FPS.
  • Once I get a “touchesEnded”, I check whether there is any animation going on (the spinning arrows above a selected unit for example) or whether there is still another touch going on. This was pretty straight forward, since I store the points each finger started touching at in a CFDictionary, so I just needed to get its count and check if it’s zero. Then I set the frameInterval to 60 again
  • My games main logic-class conforms to a “AnimationResponder” -protocol and the drawing classes store it as a “id<AnimationResponder> delegate”. So once an animation ended, I send this information to the main class and it throttles the FPS back to 1.

The result was so good, I could even feel a difference in the heat of my iPod!

Thank you Ed Welch!

To VBO or not to VBO ?

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , on August 2, 2010 by bersaelor

As I mentioned in the last post, a friend lend me an iPod 3G to test its hardware. I already compared CPU for its performance in filling the interleaved vertex array.

Now I’m going to have a look at the GPU, specifically the advantages of using Vertex Buffer Objects on the new PowerVR SGX chip.

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vDSP on iPod 3G, ARM11

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , on July 26, 2010 by bersaelor

Thanks to the generous creator of Bowmaster, I now have an iPod Touch 3G at my disposal to test the hardware for one week.

Here I’m gonna start to compare the interleaved-array fillrate using sequential loops vs. the performance of vectorized operations with vDSP. I did this for my iPod 2G in another post.

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OpenGL ES performance outline

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , on July 23, 2010 by bersaelor

For comparison against other 3D Engines, I wanted to publish my frames per second and triangles per second results.
I just want to be sure I didn’t miss any important trick I could have used to speed everything up.

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Rejoyce: 1.5 will have ambient music

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , on July 21, 2010 by bersaelor

Yesterday I got a message by Markus Illko, telling me he liked tactica and that he wanted to make ambient sound tracks for it.

The samples he has on his homepage sound really promising, so now I’m looking forward to an awesome score.

Given I’ll also add some new animations to version 1.5, the media experience will have a whole new depth 🙂

Preview of the 1.5 Graphic Improvements

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , on July 12, 2010 by bersaelor

I just felt like jumping around in the library because I got the new multisampling (Antialiasing!) feature in iOS4 working, here’s a life screenshot from my iPod 3Gen:

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Speeding up vertex-array fillrates: Sequential Loop vs. vDSP

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , on July 4, 2010 by bersaelor

Recently I saw the WWDC presentation on the Accelerate-framework Apple provides for the iPhone.

Now I thought to myself: “My, one very big part of my 3D-Engines code is dedicated to putting 3D geometry information into interleaved arrays, maybe I could speed that up?”

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New Book

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , on April 8, 2010 by bersaelor

My sister got me an Amazon Gift Coupon for easter, so I decided to get a Book about iPhone Programming.

Being quite experienced in the basics I went for “More iPhone 3 Development” by Dave Mark and Jeff LaMarche. So far I really like it, it’s written in a casual voice but not that informal as it would substract from the matter.

It covers NSStreams and establishing Socket Connection but seems to focus on Core Data. As of now I only see minor uses of Core Data to speed up loading and saving of games in my App. Still I might have a look into it once I’m going for the Version 1.1 of the game.

So thanks Dave Mark and Jeff LaMarche for writing the book. I also figured since I learned so much from Jeff’s Blog I had to buy some of his work.

Ancestor: Wodan – the trial

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , on March 29, 2010 by bersaelor

While searching for a japanese translator today, someone in a forum told me my game has essentially the same logic as an old freegame for windows :

Wodan – The Trial is a round-based strategy game. Your task is to protect your own land and to conquer your enemy’s territory with your soldiers. You can build castles for your protection and to cut off your enemy’s supply. (spielkultur.org)

Guess everything has been around somewhere before!

Here two Screenshots for comparison:

I tried it on my windows-desktop and the appearent differences are:

  1. Units can’t conquer a field that is next to a unit of the same level in wodan. In tactica units only defend their own square, not all adjacent ones.
  2. there are trees on tiles that are basically blocking the income of a tile and can be cleared by any unit. If left alone those trees grow into forests, cutting hard into your income. Basically like a neutral player. Sounds interesting.
  3. each connected area has its own income and credits amounting to the fact, that a unit in one area can disband because of the lack of credits while there is an abundance of credits in another area
  4. one may build castles that don’t seem to cost upkeep but defend a tile. Basically a wall

Now I’m thinking about adding option 1 to tactica, it could increase tactical deepness. Fact 2 also seems to encourage tactical thinking, but a tree growing into a base seems weird to me. Let alone in my sci-fi setting, what should grow into a bunker?!?

I don’t know about 3 and 4, think those wouldn’t really improve the game. Especially 4 would make everything more complicated.