Coding Practices – The Modulus Operator..

During my travels of programming video games for a living, I take great pleasure in the fulfillment of learning, exploring & experimenting with algorithms & the intricacies of programming languages everyday. Being a gamplay programmer I tend to find that I make regular use of the modulus operator & it seems to be one of those little tools that most people seem to overlook but can be really useful for a variety of problems. So I thought it might be a good idea to write a little article about my experiences with lil’ old ‘%’ & hopefully it maybe able to encourage others share good practical uses for it too & hopefully teach me a thing or two.

Before we begin I’d just like to make a note that I’m going to be using C# for all my examples considering this blog are generally c#/XNA-centric (however i’m pretty sure the same functions for the modulus operator can be applied in C/C++ & most other languages)..

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Coding Practices – The Modulus Operator..

Moving On..

Life is good..

Well ok I guess it isn’t all the time but no matter how bad things might get, you always get those instances (however brief) that things start looking up to the point where you start to wonder “Hmmm.. Many things might turn out OK after all..”

Take these past few months for instance,
I’ve been busy as a beaver organizing my wedding, knocking out PSP code for the current project at work & more importantly doing quite a bit of XNA development.
So it came as icing on the cake when MS recently announced their plans to monetize their Community Games platform launching this holiday. I’d always dreamed of shipping a nice little polished game for people the world over to enjoy & now it seems that not only can a little dedication & hard work secure my dreams coming true, but they may also net me a bit of pocket money in the process..

In such an exciting time it only helped both motivate and accelerate my drive to get the two XNA projects i’m working on out the door. Also I figure now would be as good a time as any to post a little progress on one of them:-

solace engine menu test
solace engine menu test

It’s a test render of the early menu system for the game. The design is essentially a dial mechanism (apologies for the not-so-l337-programmer-art..) that rotates persistently & all the menu options are procedurally distributed as label links around the screen. So far it’s fully functional (complete with transitions & floaty, turny dynamics..) & adding new menu screens are as easy as creating a new menu overlay object & adding strings for each menu element.

On the other side of the development field..

After a bit of a long break, me & rich have been working rigorously to get SMC into a state where it’s playable & it’s really coming along now. We’ll be posted some new updates on houseofsmash soon so don’t forget to look out for updates in the coming days/weeks..

P.S.

After developing the current engine (which I’m using on both my current projects) for over a year now it’s really been an interested ride for me that’s helped me to learn alot. I’m looking forward to taking the platform from strength to strength as development progresses & I have alot of plans for what I would like to do with it even after I complete (or bust) the two current projects..

Stay tuned for more soon!

– The Hog

Moving On..

Im Back…

Well it’s been a while since my last post… I’ve been pretty busy since getting on with life, preparing to get married & also laying the foundations for my major XNA project. SMC is still around & I keep jumping back to it where I can but beyond that I’ve been fleshing out the editor for my other project; Encrypt..

So far I’ve got the character edit suite fully fleshed out & operational with only some minor tweaks needed going forward.. I’m currently working on the animation systems which I hope to share between the editor & the game & so hopefully once thats in & setup i’ll be able to slap up a couple of test animations & a character for when I start working on the game itself.. I’ll be looking to post some media soon so watch this space for more info.

Cheers!

Im Back…

New Developments…

Well life’s been kinda crazy since I moved down to london to start my new job down here.. I’ve kinda fallen a little behind on myXNA work in favour of catching up with real life. Apart from getting engaged, moving in with my twin bro, completing a multitude of Xbox360 titles (including Halo3) & developing a complete viseme generation pipeline & lip sync animation framework for our PSP title at work, I’ve been keeping myself busy trying to catch up on lost time with SMC as well as working on a little something else…:

Orbit

Orbit is a 2D puzzle game I started working on one day when I was bored at work.. It really speaks something regarding the productivity of XNA as a development platform considering I got as far as this with only a few days of development time.. Then again I did have the benefit of using the engine i’ve been working on for SMC for the past several months and so I guess it did kind of make life alot easier. I guess it also says something about the flexibility of my little engine there too! The game is fairly simple so far & most of the basic functionality is there. The graphics are currently placeholder (since some of them were ripped from the inet…) & i’m sure as soon as I can find an artist I can redo them 😀

Anyways now I finally gotaround to having the internet setup at home i’ll be getting back into SMC in full swing and then maybe if I get some free time I can finish off orbit too..

Until then!

New Developments…

Been a while..

Well it’s been a while since I last updated my blog. For the past few months i’ve been settling into my new role in my new london based company. So far things have been really great both in terms of socially integrating into the community of the company (really important in terms of encouraging a strong work ethic) and as well as developing my knowledge base and skills as a games programmer. It’s strange because i’m the only junior coder in the entire company which is a little daunting sometimes when your surrounded with a whole wealth of knowledge and experience but I’ve been keeping myself open to learning new things and have tried to be as careful as I can be when writing critical code in terms of making sure it’s stylistically consistent with the rest of the guy’s work whilst adding my own little flavour to keep my stuff readable, well structured and maintainable.

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Been a while..

A new chapter…

Well i’m fast coming up to my last week at my current employer Zoe Mode (Kuju). Things have gone really well over the past 7 months and I’ve really gained alot of invaluable knowledge and experience relating to the process of video games development and what it means to code at a professional level. It’s been alot of hard work but i’ve enjoyed every minute of it..

Hopefully with a move to london on the way and a new position at a new studio (on a new platform) things can only get better and i’m looking forward to seeing how things pan out from here!

😀

A new chapter…

New Blog!!

Finally setup a new blog for the XNA game i’m working on! The game is called smash crew and has been in development for a few months now. We still have a long way to go though and for those who are interested you can find out more about it here

Anyways i’ll be posting any info regarding the game on the blog so stay tuned for more info..!

New Blog!!