Flash Game Development

I’ve received some emails on how to get into Flash Game Development. Well, the first thing I would recommend is talking to someone who is actually in that industry 🙂 I enjoy some of the math problems that arise in game development, but do not develop games for a living (or even a hobby for that matter).

If you want to break into any field, immerse yourself in that field and do lots of research. For game development, I’ll take it as a given you understand the importance of the necessary math and programming background. For books in this area, this one is a classic. This one has been recommended by a few people in the Flash business. Check out these as well.

Study companies that are successful in Flash gaming like Electrotank and Blockdot. Visit some of the popular award sites like FWA and see what sites containing games have been awarded. Study those games and try to implement some of the features yourself.

Study people in the industry. FlashMagazine has a good interview with Jobe Makar (which also contains a list of books you might want to consider). Bookmark his blog along with others such as Vectorkid, Mike Grundvig, and Jason Fincanon. These a just a few game developers in the industry; your research should come up with a lot more. What are these people developing? What tips are they posting? Check out the work of people involved in physics engines and advanced data structures such as Michael Baczynski.

Study what is being done with relatively new developments such as Papervision 3D in games. More here.

Study resources in game development other than Flash. Game technology, low-level algorithms, coding techniques and such are common across all development environments. Learn from others that use different development environments. Gamedev.net might be a good place to start. I’ve never read Game Developer magazine, but I’ve heard others in the industry recommend it. Check out Gamasutra and the IGDA. You might also like this resource.

There are tutorial sites like gotoAndPlay.it containing articles and tutorials relevant to game development. FlashKit has a game forum. Adobe has online tutorials and there are other resources such as Flash Game University.

In any industry, it’s helpful to have visibility into the entire process from concept to delivery. Wikipedia has a decent article on the game development process.

This is just a tiny list of links to get started; keep in mind I am not in the game industry.

If others have useful resource links to help anyone wanting to break into Flash game developments, comments are welcome. Good luck in your game development efforts!

Flash in Tennis Instruction

No matter what your sport or interest, everyone wants to look at the pro’s technique. After laying off tennis for more than two decades, I need a lot of help … especially in the area of pain relief 🙂 I thought this site used Flash in an interesting and practical way to illustrate technique that is uniform from pro to pro and stroke to stroke, integrating video and commentary.

http://www.playerdevelopment.usta.com/home

Click on ‘Learn from the Pros’

WOW and PV3D Demos Downloads and Tutorials

In case you haven’t seen this, check out this impressive list of demos, downloads, and YouTube tutorials on the WOW engine and PV3D!

Wow Physics Papervervision3D Starter Code
Demo: http://nkuflc.org/wowphysics/
Source: http://code.google.com/p/flex3cookbook1/downloads/list
YouTube: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wYZn0fEtwmQ

3D Sinc Plotter
Demo: http://nkuflc.org/sincplot/
Source: http://code.google.com/p/flex3cookbook1/ under downloads

Papervision 3D: Getting Started in Flex 3
YouTube: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sgFWaGheR6g


3D Plotter in Papervison3D and Flex 3 (1 of 2)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YlFLT9YA444

3D Plotter in Papervison3D and Flex 3 (2 of 2)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TvpIFLLLKp8

Molecule Viewer
Demo: http://nkuflc.org/molecule/
Source: http://code.google.com/p/flex3cookbook1/ under downloads

Molecule Viewer in Papervision3D and Flex 3 (1 of 2)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=smDWxWx9I8A

Molecule Viewer in Papervision3D and Flex 3 (2 of 2)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QWeMDzvQ9ko

3D Carousel in Flex 3 and Papervision3D (Free Souce Code)
Demo: http://nkuflc.org/carousel/
Source: http://code.google.com/p/flex3cookbook1/ (under downloads)
YouTube: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2VWUR0Yh2Ys

Bible Code in Papervision3D and Flex 3
Demo: http://nkuflc.org/omega/
Source: http://code.google.com/p/biblecode/ (under downloads)
YouTube: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3gC4MM2INpo

PaperLife3D
Demo: http://nkuflc.org/plnav/
Source: http://code.google.com/p/paperlife/ (under downloads)
YouTube:

(1 of 2) Papervision3D Second Life Nav System in Flex 3
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5WbdTdjVO2c
(2 of 2) Papervision3D Second Life Nav System in Flex 3
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Rt0V7c44T7U

New Quad. Bezier Methods

When using Bezier curves to approximate trajectories in path animation, it can be useful to query extreme points. This query can be used, for example, to test if an auto-generated path between two points exceeds a bound. For quadratic Beziers, there are three critical points in [0.1]; the endpoints and a possible third point where the derivative is zero. Four methods, tAtMinX(), tAtMaxX(), tAtMinY(), and tAtMaxY() were added to the IParametric Interface, although the only concrete implementation is currently for Bezier2.

The following screen shot illustrates an example of a quad. Bezier trajectory auto-generated between two endpoints. The red Knots indicate maximum y-value (y-down is positive in Flash) and the green Knots indicate minimum y-value.

In this case, tAtMinY() indicates the parameter value at the top of the trajectory from the point of view of the user. The Bezier2 class also has a working implementation of toString(), although some thought is required as to how it should be implemented for arbitrary parametric curves. The usual work in progress 🙂

As always, Singularity can be downloaded here. Experiment and have fun!