I did it again! I started yet another new project. As if I don't have enough todo already
The new project is CrystalBlend. It is an alternative to the GameBlender project which you can use to create games from within Blender. The problem with GameBlender is that it is no longer maintained well and is showing its age. A Crystal Space based version of that promises a lot more for the future. Especially since it will use CEL and thus have access to the CEL game entity system. The first version will be compatible with the current GameBlender but the plan is to move to a new CEL based version pretty soon. In the end I hope we can even get a new CrystalBlend game UI in Blender itself. That would really be nice.
As to my other projects. All is still in progress. I'm waiting for the new levels from Xotic and when I get those I will start working on the first tech demo for Crystal Core?.
Now that the celtest demo is released I can start thinking about what to do next. Here is a list of things that I have in my head and that I would like to do:
So. I think I still have a little bit of work to do.
Yesterday and a bit of today I worked hard on a complicated corridor in my new celtest level. It was complicated because it had to follow the curve of another object and in the mean time I had to open windows between the corridor and the other object. When I later tried out the level I discovered that the new corridor ran straight through another part of the level that I put in another sector for optimization purposes. Since the new corridor was so complicated to make I had no choice but to change the older corridors that intersected the new areas. Luckily they were not complicated so this part was not very hard. But in addition to those corridors there was also an elevator that intersected the new corridors. I couldn't easily move that elevator so I decided to cut the new corridor in two sections with the elevator in the middle. All in all it turned out nicely.
I just upgraded to blender 2.37. I'm really starting to like this tool a lot. In 2.37 there are again a few new additional tools that make it a lot easier to manipulate and transform your meshes. My favorite functions in Blender are extrude, subdivide, and split. Extrude is extremely useful to enlarge areas and give walls thickness. The only thing is that you need to be careful that all normals are facing the right direction. Subdivide is very useful if you have made some room or corridor and you want to add a new door in a wall. First you split the wall from the rest of the mesh and then you subdivide it (with or without the 'Beauty' option). After that you can go to edge select mode and drag the edges so that you get the right size for the door. Then you remove the face and you have a door. The reason to split the wall before doing a subdivide is to make sure that the subdivision will not cause adjacent faces to be triangulized. You first want to subdivide the wall on its own. Later on you can then remove double vertices in the mesh to ensure that all is connected properly again.
Well the new level is progressing very nicely now. I'm using the textures from Xotic which he made for the Crystal Core levels and with those textures it is very easy for me to make a very big Star Wars lookalike level. It looks a lot cooler then current celtest level When I started making the level I didn't think of using the textures from Xotic so the first part of the level doesn't look as nice. I'm probably going to create that again.
Currently I'm fully concentrating on the level but during building of that level I found out that there are still lots of things to do on the code side. Here is a small summary:
Today I fixed an important bug in the static lightmap calculator. Apparently shadows didn't cast through portals. For some obscure reason the code that marked shadows relevant was removed. It was not easy to revive that code so I just consider all shadows relevant now.
That's it for now.
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