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Thread: got a new blog

  1. #1
    Yes we can tomsamson's Avatar
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    got a new blog

    hey there all,
    for those who still are somehow interested in what im up to despite my constant *****ing about Adobe and all, well, i got a new blog here:
    http://www.potatocows.com/
    Well, thats all

  2. #2
    President PhobiK's Avatar
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    Thanks for sharing, nice stuff! The Stuntmanbob game looks pretty awesome
    This is MC. His _parents sent him to stop() by the super market to buy some _root beer if he wanted to gotoAndPlay() with his friends at the park later.

    This is my Blog!... The gaming Process
    Please check out my site: Giddel Creations

  3. #3
    Yes we can tomsamson's Avatar
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    thanks for the good words, i hope i get to post on it halfway regularly =)
    Im glad you like Stuntmanbob, well, it was my first iPhone game (done in 2008 man, thats long ago now) and more about the learning experience regarding doing 3d and physics stuff on the iPhone, but yeah, im still updating it in between with things i think up in between client work =)
    I checked your blog, too, nice, though add more images, videos and links to the games

  4. #4
    When you know are. Son of Bryce's Avatar
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    Right on man. I bought Stuntmanbob to check it out. Reminds me of that Rocketman game (I'd love to see a remake of that on iPhone).

    You made it with Unity right? You got anything else in the works?

  5. #5
    Yes we can tomsamson's Avatar
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    Thanks for buying it man, hope you have some fun with it =)
    If you have feedback on a specific part, let me know, im especially interested if people find the editor enjoable to use at all and what sorta stuff theyd like to have added in that.
    And yeah, the cannonball mode is similar to rocketman in a way and yeah, thatd be cool on iPhone, too =)
    Yup, stuntmanbob is done in unity3d and yeah, i always got a bunch of stuff in the works =)
    I want to spend the rest of january for "house cleaning", so go through all my spare time stuff of last year and decide what to do with it.
    Its typical for me that i start a lot of things as experiment or for trying a new technology, language or platform but then i have to do some client stuff again to be able to pay the bills or something else comes in between and one never gets back to that spare time stuff...

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    I haven't got an iPhone, or I would try them out.

    What kind of performance can you get from Unity compared to a native 3D engine in Objective C on the iPhone? Have you benchmarked Unity iPhone?

    Tumbledrops looks impressive. Very slick and polished.

  7. #7
    Yes we can tomsamson's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by rumblesushi View Post
    I haven't got an iPhone, or I would try them out.
    Thanks, yeah, hope some who have the device do =)

    Quote Originally Posted by rumblesushi View Post
    What kind of performance can you get from Unity compared to a native 3D engine in Objective C on the iPhone? Have you benchmarked Unity iPhone?
    I havent done direct comparison benchmarks between native C++, Objective C and unity iPhone stuff cause i dont feel like i have to =)
    Its clear that the closer to hardware level one goes the better the performance can be and C++ stuff will run faster than Objective C stuff which will run faster than unity iPhone stuff.
    That said unity iPhone is perfectly fine for doing most even action intense 2d and 3d games running nicely on the devices and many of the best selling and most praised 2d and 3d games on the app store are made with unity iPhone, so theres no huge noteworthy drawback there.
    Also while in theory if someone codes a C++ 3d engine and adds in Physx support and all the other functionality unity has manually he could get better performance, its unlikely that anyone besides a huge console publisher could finance the dev costs or get that done in reasonable timeframe.
    With flash the Adobe people are right now arguing with that its still in development and also with the point that native stuff always runs better, but yeah, we are talking about quite different performance there compared to unity3d, well see if its good enough for the type of stuff most want to do when it comes out and if people like the workflow.

    Quote Originally Posted by rumblesushi View Post
    Tumbledrops looks impressive. Very slick and polished.
    Yeah, i think it turned out really nice, too =) I hope it does really well, id be glad for dock =)

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    Interesting, I don't know much about iPhone development, I thought one could only use Objective C. I didn't know you could write C++ apps on it.

    Is if safe to say then, that most of the major published games on the iPhone use C++, and that games on the app store probably use Unity or Objective C?

    Despite not having compared the performance, do you have an idea of how many polygons Unity iPhone can push per second or per frame?

  9. #9
    Yes we can tomsamson's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by rumblesushi View Post
    Interesting, I don't know much about iPhone development, I thought one could only use Objective C. I didn't know you could write C++ apps on it.
    One can actually code iPhone games in many languages meanwhile using different dev tools =)
    With unity3d one can do it in Javascript and C#, with the flash solution AS3 and there are many other solutions for using other languages. Its more about into what the code is turned into on compilation than what language one uses initially =)

    Quote Originally Posted by rumblesushi View Post
    Is if safe to say then, that most of the major published games on the iPhone use C++, and that games on the app store probably use Unity or Objective C?
    I dont get your question/ the seperation you make there. Games and apps, all besides those which come preinstalled, are distributed via the app store, so theres no seperation between "major published games" and games published on the app store, thats the same thing, all are published on the app store.
    As many of the most selling iPhone games are made with unity, well, it is if not the most popular higher end solution definately among them.

    I think for different groups different languages/ environments/ dev tools are more interesting. For example for someone who already has a finished console game and wants to port that over with least effort hell probably use what seems to be the solution that allows to port that over with least effort with ideally best possible end result. Someone who creates a new app/ game for the device or different devices might focus more on using something that allows most smooth workflow for that while also leading to good end result.
    I most use unity because it allows to do 2d and 3d games running at good performance on the devices and also port them between web/desktop/device deploy with in comparison few effort needed, next to the sides that i can work in enojyable workflow and with languages i like.

    Quote Originally Posted by rumblesushi View Post
    Despite not having compared the performance, do you have an idea of how many polygons Unity iPhone can push per second or per frame?
    No matter if done in unity or other way its no hard single number but a quite varying one depending on a number of things.
    First of all a big factor is whether one wants things running smooth on just the highest end device (right now the iPhone 3gs), also on the a bit less powerful device (iPod touch 2nd gen) or on all devices, so also the slowest ones, the first gen iPhone for example.
    I still optimize my stuff to run well on the oldest devices, too as the majority of users doesnt have the latest devices yet.

    Then regarding your app/ game itself it depends on the mix of things you have going on there, if you only had a single mesh it could easily have over 20k polies and still run at high fps even on the oldest devices, on the newer ones you could have a good bit higher polie stuff.
    Of course usually one has way more things going on that cost performance than a single mesh though: game code to be executed, many objects with different materials, shaders, scene lights, physics engine doing its own thing, user input handling using touch or accelometer, mp3 playback etc etc. so usually one would have way less polies to still achieve good performance in a scene with lots else going on.

    One can also do occlusion culling to only show stuff in the current view and it has automatic drawacall batching so when you use several objects with same material they will only need one drawcall and with things like that one can push quite a bunch =)
    Last edited by tomsamson; 01-21-2010 at 05:33 PM.

  10. #10
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    Ah, I didn't really know exactly how iPhone publishing worked. I didn't realise everything went through the app store. I guess what I meant was, is a game developed by Namco or EA, like Ridge Racer or Need for Speed, more likely to be written in C++, where as the games developed by lone devs or small studios are more likely to use Unity for example?

    What best selling iPhone games use Unity?

    That's interesting about the different iPhone releases too, I didn't think about that. Probably not quite as much of a pain in the arse as PC development/Flash development though, where it's really quite random - what kind of performance any given's users system might give, although you have a rough idea.

    I was wondering if there was a hardwired limit, like the DS (which is only 2000 polys per frame).

    20k polys is a lot, even for just 1 model. When you say high, what framerate would you get from that, over 30?

    And for in game performance, what would be a more realistic figure per frame, with a decent amount of background objects, a fair few enemies etc, and physics, but no dynamic lighting?

    Regarding occlusion culling, do you mean proper occlusion culling, where the screen is gridded up, and before any given object is rendered, if it's seen as being completely obscured by an object in front of it, it won't be rendered? Which is what the Dreamcast PowerVR chip did (which ironically, an updated version of is the GPU in the iPhone).

  11. #11
    Yes we can tomsamson's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by rumblesushi View Post
    Ah, I didn't really know exactly how iPhone publishing worked. I didn't realise everything went through the app store. I guess what I meant was, is a game developed by Namco or EA, like Ridge Racer or Need for Speed, more likely to be written in C++, where as the games developed by lone devs or small studios are more likely to use Unity for example?
    For games developed newly from the ground up also big studios use unity in many cases, when its about porting already made games people would most likely use what allows the most seamless porting path. That may be using unity, coding it in C++ from the ground up or soon maybe also using the unreal engine port to some degree. Its definately the case that unity is the most preferred solution for mid-higher end games by indies though because its much less time consuming than coding such a complex engine oneself and also much more affordable than using unreal engine for example.
    Next to that the recently announced unreal engine port also will only run on the iPhone 3gs+, not on the older devices.

    Quote Originally Posted by rumblesushi View Post
    What best selling iPhone games use Unity?
    There are lots and lots of em, unity made games are in the top 10 in many categories and even ranked first in many categories.
    From the top of my head i only remember Skee-Ball (not technically that impressive but in the top 10 and number 1 in games for a long time), Zombieville USA, Ravensword, Ice Age and some others now, you can check the unity team blog or some other sites where they post more regularly about that kind of things.

    Quote Originally Posted by rumblesushi View Post
    That's interesting about the different iPhone releases too, I didn't think about that. Probably not quite as much of a pain in the arse as PC development/Flash development though, where it's really quite random - what kind of performance any given's users system might give, although you have a rough idea.

    Exactly. Baically there are a handful of device types and once one knows those one can decide what to optimize for and thats it =)

    Quote Originally Posted by rumblesushi View Post
    I was wondering if there was a hardwired limit, like the DS (which is only 2000 polys per frame).
    Of course the hardware itself has a limit somewhere but as what one can achieve depends on so many factors its hard to tell what that limit is just on poly side alone.

    Quote Originally Posted by rumblesushi View Post
    20k polys is a lot, even for just 1 model. When you say high, what framerate would you get from that, over 30?

    Yes, though id rather lockdown the fps to something below 60 than have it be 60 max but more jumpy when lots its going on. Also id do different refresh rates for redraw fps, physics updates and input detection.

    Quote Originally Posted by rumblesushi View Post
    And for in game performance, what would be a more realistic figure per frame, with a decent amount of background objects, a fair few enemies etc, and physics, but no dynamic lighting?
    I think its a good idea to stay at around 10k or below in actual game scenarios with lots else going on when one wants it to run smooth on older devices. You can go higher but the lower you can go the more you have left for other things =)

    Quote Originally Posted by rumblesushi View Post
    Regarding occlusion culling, do you mean proper occlusion culling, where the screen is gridded up, and before any given object is rendered, if it's seen as being completely obscured by an object in front of it, it won't be rendered? Which is what the Dreamcast PowerVR chip did (which ironically, an updated version of is the GPU in the iPhone).
    Im not sure really how comparable it is to the way the dreamcast did it, but yeah, basically one has a box grid and its handled in the way you described. In the unity iPhone manual its described nicely in detail, sadly i could only find the link to the desktop/web version manual online now, not the one of the iPhone version, only have that locally.
    Last edited by tomsamson; 01-21-2010 at 06:51 PM.

  12. #12
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    Thanks for the info Tom. Regarding the occlusion culling, seeing as it uses an updated version of the Dreamcast's GPU, I'd bet it's probably almost identical to the DC's method

  13. #13
    Custom User Title Incrue's Avatar
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    Thats very nice, i just hope you dont focus only on iphone

  14. #14
    Yes we can tomsamson's Avatar
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    rumblesushi: cool =)

    Incrue: Im glad you like it mate, and yeah, no, ill write about all sorts of stuff i work on, so it wont be only iPhone stuff =)

  15. #15
    Yes we can tomsamson's Avatar
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    For once i should do something good, so please read: http://www.potatocows.com/?p=40
    I hope it doesnt come off as self promotion, if it makes at least a few donate id be glad =)

  16. #16
    Senior Member Sietjp's Avatar
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    I will for sure read your blog from time to time!
    stuntmanbob looks like a wining game. Very similar to ragdoll bllaster which is a huge success on the store. It seems pretty well advanced and the level edior looks awesome.

  17. #17
    Yes we can tomsamson's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sietjp View Post
    I will for sure read your blog from time to time!
    cool =)

    Quote Originally Posted by Sietjp View Post
    stuntmanbob looks like a wining game. Very similar to ragdoll bllaster which is a huge success on the store. It seems pretty well advanced and the level edior looks awesome.

    Im glad you like how it looks =)
    Especially since its a spare time project of mine so i focus more on adding new gameplay related stuff to it rather than it getting the render graphics presentation love of our client games

    Yeah, the cannonball mode is in a way quite similar to ragdoll blaster, though my main inspiration was actually the cannon mode in pilotwings 64.
    Ragdoll blaster was done and released after i had the cannonball mode in there =) I dont know if the ragdoll blaster developers are the same guys as some guys doing a very similar flash game, but in either case i like ragdoll blaster a lot, too and think they did a really nice job with it.

    But yeah, thats how it goes, people see one thing as copied or inspired from the other thing they saw before even if its maybe the other way round or something entirely different came way before =)

    I personally think true innovation is totally praiseworthy, but i always find it weird when us game developers or gamers moan about something copying something else, it would be no good for game evolution if no game used good concepts of other games =)

    I get inspired by many games and likewise i think some stuff in some of my games also inspired some others (heck, how many monster truck games that are very similar to mine came out since my first one? =) )

    I personally only dislike it when something is a totaly carbon copy, so 1:1 the same thing or when a game developer comes up with something creative and shows that and then some other copies that before the first developer can release his thing and get success with it, but yeah, thats a bigger topic, maybe for a propper lengthy blog post sometime =)

    Regarding the level editor: that should become much nicer with one of the next updates, im working on some cool additions there =)
    Last edited by tomsamson; 01-23-2010 at 11:48 AM.

  18. #18
    Senior Member Sietjp's Avatar
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    The flash equivalent is called Ragdoll canon (1 & 2) and I don't think they are the same guys. Actually the Ragdoll blaster adaptation has a gameplay almost identical to the Ragdoll canon game. The guys at Backfilp studios just made it perfect for the iPhone and it's one of the classics now.
    Yes, sometimes, very small changes in the gameplay/theme, have huge impacts on the fun and the popularity of the game. One can say that it's just a copy cat, but finding the right modification that turns a good game into a must-own game, is also a great talent.

    About your blog, I suggest a twitter account to notify your new posts.

  19. #19
    Yes we can tomsamson's Avatar
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    Yeah, its a bummer if its not the same guys and the flash game makers didnt get a cut from the iPhone sales.
    I agree though, regarding the game itself its an excellent example for how with a few changes and tweaks to the formula a game can become way more enjoyable and even if its the same core concept, anyone who has played both games for a while would see that there are quite a lot of notable improvements there.


    Regarding my blog and twitter:
    Well, i kinda wasnt a lot into using twitter for a good while, but youre right, good suggestion, thanks =). I made a twitter account now, finally, haha.
    The link is in my signature.

    Regarding the blog itself: I made a few new posts in the meantime, i guess at least the flash related ones might be interesting to some folks here =)

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