Let me just start with: Wall of text incomming to explain everything in as much detail as I can. The true questions however are summed up at the bottom.
Although it is my first post (and this account has only just been registered), I’ve been reading along off and on for the past couple years. And yes, I too have dreams of grandeur and making my own game, hell I even once wanted to create my own MMORPG. But, that is for another time, another life maybe.
Reading these forums aswell as others have given me the insight to see that, at least at the moment, i’m not ready to start that project. Except maybe in small. So lets skipp the (first)M, the O and the R part, and just go for “MOG” - Multiplayer Online Game. Well, that is to say - I want to start as small as possible.
Now, just so you guys know - I have programming experience. I’ve worked on personal projects for the past 13 years in PHP, C/C++, Python and many others. And that does include actual working and released products aswell as Object Oriented Modular design, Game development and server programming.
Panda3D has caught my eye after looking at a few others like Ogre3d. The relative simplicity and maturity of Panda3D is something that really speaks to me.
I’ve read a lot of documents around game design theory, best practices etc. as well as the “Game design document”. Next to that I’ve also read quite a few manuals, howto’s etc. around different aspects.
That is so far about my personal experience etc. Now onto the actual project.
I want to create a space-based game. Ofcourse not limited to only 1 solar system. The basic idea is a bit like Eve-Online (Though with quite a few chances ofcourse) as I really enjoy that game a lot. I haven’t quite figured the rest out yet, despite dreaming of this for years. I want to make sure that it not only appeals to me but others aswell so I keep making changes
Now I realise this is still, despite the experience, the “slimming down” etc. that it is still a big project. Next to that (As this is “Yet another hobby project” - the budget is unfortunatly a little… limited.
As such, I feel i’ve reached a point where I cannot continue in good faith without some advise on a few subjects.
Regarding the Game design document - I’ve tried looking (including this forum) but all the links to examples / templates I’ve found go to old pages. do you guys know of any? If so, can you provide some links?
Are there any documents/books in general that, after reading this, comes to mind as a you must read this sort of thing? - I really want to do my research on this but am mostly going around in circles.
What kind of tools do you use (for modeling, building enviroments and creating textures)?
I’ve tried looking but I can’t quite seem to find a how to on creating textures. I know how to apply them once you have them (In blender anyway) but not on how to actually create the textures themselves. Do you know of any good way / howto to learn how to do that? I have especially problems with knowing what shape to use for non-square objects (Cube’s, cones etc. etc.).
When thinking of names for Characters, places etc. - How do you come up with them? How do you make them feel “In-Place”?
I might get more questions down the road but please, if you have any additional tips etc. that are not explicitly pointed to in this post - do post them here.
In the mean time I’ve started to try and get some experience in the fields where I miss them. How ever I ran into a problem.
A) I’ve tried using blender (And succeeded to some extend) to create a 3d model. Using the chicken exporter I can also export it to a .egg file. When I click render frame in blender it also shows correctly however in both pview and a short python panda3d app (Based on hello world) the textures don’t show up. I can do that manually (myTexture = loadTexture(“texture.png”) - .setTexture(myTexture) (From memory so might contain errors ) - but as far as I can tell it is possible to get them to show up with only the model.
Can you guys give any tips on where to look? I’m using blender 2.49 on Mac OSX snowlepard.
Lastly I hope this post shows that I really did think this through. I want this to be a fun experience aswell as teaching. Hence the fact that I already cut it down as much as I could. And yes - Server development is actually fun to me aswell
If there are any questions let me know.