I Wanna Make A FlatShaded 3D Polygonal World War II Flight Simulator

CaryMG
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Post: #1
Hey!


I accidently stumbled onto this most cool website & it's a good thing I did 'cause I can think of no place better ta get the info I'm looking for ....

See these ?

[Image: A-10Attack6.jpg]
"A-10 Attack!"

[Image: Sentrya.jpg]
"Sentry"

I think there's something to be said for flatshaded 3D polygonal graphics -- clean .... uncumbersome .... clear .... don't you agree?

"ParSoft", the development wizards begind "A-10 Attack!", also did a beautiful flatshaded 3D polygonal World War II flight simulator, but it was in the Pacific & not Europe.

What I'd like ta do is use the same asthetic & make a European-based one.
And I'd like ta have MIDI music & FX.
Keep it nice & simple.
And I'd like it to be playable online for Macintosh computers with "System 6" & up.

Except BASIC, I have no programming experience, so I'd like ta know ....
What engine should a beginner use ta get the kinda graphics in the screenshots?
What programming language should I use?
How would I incorporate MIDI music & FX?


Thanks In Advance!
- CaryMG
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Post: #2
CaryMG Wrote:And I'd like it to be playable online for Macintosh computers with "System 6" & up.

Good luck with that Annoyed

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Post: #3
Well BASIC is a good start, there are some modern day compliers that still use basic today. Blitz Basic and RealBasic come to mind though I have no experince with either.

The graphics in the screen shot would be fairly easy to do with modern OpenGL, im not sure when you say engine if you are looking to create a game through a mod system if so there are several engines you could go with; Dim3 (not sure if it can do this kind of game) Unity, Torque.

Programming langauge is really up to you, BASIC would work if thats what you know, I personally would recommend some form of C. If you would like to make an engine from scrap you should look into OpenGL or SDL for the graphics, there are forums here for both those options.

Sound Effects are getting easier by the day and there are a few solutions out there. OpenAL, FMOD, Quicktime, ect. I would work more on the graphics and basics before you dive into sound, but once again thats just me. You can find several articles on the pros and cons of the listed above sound librarys.

Its becomming harder to support OS Classic systems and the user base for these is fading quickly, not to say that no one uses Classic still but it might not be worth it to support it, that is something you will have to look more deeply into and decide for yourself. Keep in mind the older the computer that you want to support the older librarys you will have to use. So it will limit out a lot of the easy shortcuts you could be taking.

For network and muiltplayer functions look into BSD Sockets, but like you said keep it simple, if you get that far then look to adding it in later. Dont overwhelm yourself. Game programming is a lot harder then many people think it is.

Welcome to the forum, and goodluck

Kyle Richter
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Post: #4
That's actually A-10 Cuba, which was a much nicer sim than A-10 Attack. I loved that game. Smile

I'm doing a game with flat shaded visuals with Unity. I'd generally recommend Unity as a high quality, nice to use engine with lots of features. It's flexible enough to do something like a flight sim with stylised visuals. On the other hand, it doesn't really do MIDI... if you want minimal audio, you'd have to fake it by recording it to OGG files or something. It's also not good for compatibility with very old systems, although I'd say that's a blind alley that you shouldn't waste your time with anyway.

One important thing: make no mistake, flight sims are difficult to program no matter what engine you use. There's a lot of really hairy maths to deal with, and if you have no prior experience and only a basic understanding of maths you'll have a hard time with it. It's not a great first project.

Another thought on the use of flat shading in flight sims... it makes it very difficult to tell where the ground is, even if you use lots of ground detail objects. I couldn't tell you how often I ploughed into the ground in A-10 Cuba because I couldn't see that I was only feet away from it. Wink

Neil Carter
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Post: #5
Trying to make a 3D game work on 16 year old hardware doesn't seem like a sensible goal to me Blink

If you want it to be reasonably easy to get decent performance, you'll probably find that machines with Rage 128s are the minimum sensible spec. You might as well limit yourself to Mac OS X, since AFAIK everything with a Rage 128 runs Mac OS X.
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CaryMG
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Post: #6
kodex Wrote:The graphics in the screen shot would be fairly easy to do with modern OpenGL ....
WOOT !

kodex Wrote:I personally would recommend some form of C ....
mHM -- that's what I've been hearing, but would a flatshaded 3D polygonal Macintosh computer flightsimulator be do-able in BASIC?

kodex Wrote:Sound Effects are getting easier by the day and .... you can find several articles on the pros and cons of the listed above sound librarys.
kk -- I'll look for that!

kodex Wrote:Keep in mind the older the computer that you want to support the older librarys you will have to use.
I so didn't consider that ....
kk -- "Tiger" it is, then ....

kodex Wrote:For network and muiltplayer functions look into BSD Sockets ....
Will do!

kodex Wrote:Welcome to the forum, and goodluck
Thank you, thank you!


Later!
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CaryMG
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Post: #7
NCarter Wrote:That's actually "A-10 Attack!Cuba".
It is indeed. lol
Sorry I mislabled it.

NCarter Wrote:I'd generally recommend "Unity" as a high quality, nice to use engine with lots of features. It's flexible enough to do something like a flight sim with stylised visuals. On the other hand, it doesn't really do MIDI ....
Dang ....
I so love that digital "MIDI Feel" ....
And "Unity" was also rcommended by "kodex", so I'll definately have a look !

NCarter Wrote:One important thing: make no mistake, flight sims are difficult to program no matter what engine you use.
There's a lot of really hairy maths to deal with, and if you have no prior experience and only a basic understanding of maths you'll have a hard time with it.
Understood ....

NCarter Wrote:Another thought on the use of flat shading in flight sims...
it makes it very difficult to tell where the ground is, even if you use lots of ground detail objects.
I couldn't tell you how often I ploughed into the ground in "A-10 Attack! Cuba" because I couldn't see that I was only feet away from it.
Never thought of that .....
I'll figure somethin' out ....

Thanks for all the info, Carter!


Later!
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Post: #8
CaryMG Wrote:mHM -- that's what I've been hearing, but would a flatshaded 3D polygonal Macintosh computer flightsimulator be do-able in BASIC?

Yes, When you are working with OpenGL it dosnt matter what langauge you are using. Anything to display Graphics will be an OpenGL call, Anything to play a sound will be an OpenAL call (example).

You will use BASIC or whatever you go with to setup the windows, handle mouse and keyboard input, handle math functions and loops for the game, ect.

Kyle Richter
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Post: #9
If you find a BASIC derivative that supports OpenGL calls (through whatever API they use as a layer), it's possible. Actually, I think RealBasic does have such a layer.

However, supporting down to System 6 is utterly impossible. Having full 3D graphics of the level you want on a computer from 1989? Hah, I'd love to see that tried. OS 9 is the farthest back you'll be able to support. You wouldn't get native Intel Mac support, though. They may have universal binary support for RealBasic in an update, but you won't be able to support OS 9.

That said, though it's possible to get something like this done in RealBasic, you will probably find it better overall if you learn C/C++/ObjectiveC (any of those, really) and coding it in that. RealBasic is rather limiting, and I know from experience that it's buggy. When I first started programming, I got RealBasic, but I ran into some walls because of bugs that RealBasic put in my program. That's when I decided to stop using it and hold off programming until the next year (last school year) when I started learning programming in school. I think that overall, if you want to continue programming, your best option would be to learn a less limiting programming language.
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CaryMG
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Post: #10
OneSadCookie Wrote:Trying to make a 3D game work on 16 year old hardware doesn't seem like a sensible goal to me.
Here's my inspiration ....
[Image: ChuckYeagersAirCombat3.jpg] [Image: ChuckYeagersAirCombat2.jpg]
"Chuck Yeager's Air Combat"

[Image: ChuckYeagersAirCombatManual.jpg]
"Chuck Yeager's Air Combat" Macintosh Computer Manual
Classic boxmac Macintosh computers .... "System 6" .... flatshaded 3D polygonal graphics World War II flight simulator ....
WOOT !


Later!
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Post: #11
Chuck Yeager was a great game, and if you wanted to clone it, it would be possible. But you have to remember that you would be writing what at the time was a top of the line game. To use the library, formats, speed restrictions ect of a system 6 machine takes an incredible amount of skill.

I am doubtful I could draw a triangle to the screen on a System 6 Machine in less then 10 seconds, but with todays technology and hardware I can draw it 2000 times a second easy.

Im sure all of us here have recreated our favorite childhood games, but copy the concept and gameplay, not the graphics =), take advantage of the technology available to you, Remake it for OSX with better graphics and maybe even some color =p.

Kyle Richter
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Post: #12
First project?

Flight simulator?

I hate to burst your bubble, but the chances are next to nil. Sure, it's great that you want to clone a game you love, but practicality is a real concern here. I doubt that anyone here could really recommend jumping into this as a first project, mostly because of the things involved:
1. Learning a new language (C!)
2. Learning OpenGL
3. Learning 3D in OpenGL
4. Trying to use MIDI with it all (blech! We have GarageBand now, and it can do the same thing (and style) but better!)
5. Spontaneously learning how to model planes really well
6. Getting some non-sucky flight physics together
7. $$$ - buy an engine, buy some modeling software
8. Time

My advice: pick up a book on introductory programming, or go get BlitzMax (http://www.blitzmax.com), which is...sorta like BASIC and sorta like C++, and is made specifically for game making (but has native GUI stuff too). Then make Pong, and go from there.

If you don't mind me asking...how old are you?

P.S. Please don't double post. It's annoying. It's like drumming your fingers on the table when there is no other noise in the room.

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Post: #13
kodex Wrote:I am doubtful I could draw a triangle to the screen on a System 6 Machine in less then 10 seconds, but with todays technology and hardware I can draw it 2000 times a second easy.

I believe that would be 'easily' Rasp

but anyway, I would only bother supporting OSX, or OS 9 at the earliest. Anyone on earlier computers prolly wouldn't get your game in the first place (I'd be surprised if they knew what the internet was). If you take a look at Blitz Max, it supports OpenGL easily, though it cost $80 the last time I checked. It might support classic, I'm not sure, you'd have to check.

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Post: #14
Nayr Wrote:I believe that would be 'easily' Rasp

"As you yourself may fully be presently aware of, my grammar sucks" - Family Guy

Not to go so completly off topic. Ok well maybe but I had to defend myself with humor.

Kyle Richter
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Post: #15
CaryMG: While Diordna may be being slightly harsh, he's entirely correct. It's great you have so much enthusiasm, and most of us can relate to that, but you'd do better to syphon that energy into a project that you could really realize well. Pong or Tic Tac Toe are good options.
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