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Archive for the ‘development’ tag

Cheating in Game Design

Posted on 16th Mar 2009 at 11:09 by Cliff Harris with 16 comments

Cliff Harris
One day, the cheapest laptop will have a quantum graphics computer that can render pixel perfect photorealistic images at 70 frames per second with infinite complexity.

Until that happens, games programmers will do bodges, cheats and sneaky optimisations that you probably don't notice.

I remember a comedy sketch from years ago that ridiculed the kids puppet show Stingray for having a character in a high-tech wheelchair-style device that he slid around on. The joke was that this made him easier to film as a puppet, because it was always the walking that looked rubbish. Game developers do the same thing all the time.

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The Curse of Darwinia

Posted on 9th Mar 2009 at 13:23 by Introversion Software with 9 comments

Introversion Software
The Curse of Darwinia, as it has become known at Introversion, actually began way before we ever got near the Xbox Live Arcade deal with Microsoft three years ago. So before we delve headlong into a discussion about the murky world of commercial independent game development, let me give you a quick recap for those unfamiliar with Introversion and the infamous Darwinia.

Darwinia was released on PC back in March 2005. It got a lot of critical acclaim, but suffered from a bit of a botched retail launch (our fault for over-pricing it), and seemingly had only a small hard core following online. That all changed in late 2005 when Darwinia was released on Steam as only the second non-Valve game on the platform. Sales shot through the roof, and almost seemingly overnight everyone knew about the game and Introversion.

After that we got an email from CMP, the folks who run the GDC games conference. They suggested that we'd be eligible for the Independent Games Festival which was running at the next GDC in March 2006. We entered and waited. Sure enough, we soon found that we'd made it to the short-list of games and received some complimentary invites to the conference which was being held in San Jose. Yay!

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My New Game: Space Battles

Posted on 12th Feb 2009 at 11:29 by Cliff Harris with 14 comments

Cliff Harris
People love space battles. Oh, we may pretend we really care about whether or not Anakin will betray Obi-wan, or whether Ben Sisko will ever marry Cassidy, but deep down, we don't care what happens as long as people end up resolving their differences in a giant battle in space with things going zap and bang.

That's the idea behind my next game. As an indie developer on the PC, I'm 100% free to make whatever game I want. There is no publisher to 'pitch' the game idea to, and I don't need to aim for a specific demographic, because as a one-man outfit, I can basically target any niche big enough to earn back a years salary (that's how long my games take).

In any case, I reckon big space battles are a safe bet. Making a game about space battles is like offering someone chocolate biscuits. Nobody ever pretends they don't like chocolate biscuits, and nobody really dislikes big over-the-top space battles.

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Welcome to the bit-tech Blog!

Posted on 30th Jan 2009 at 14:51 by Tim Smalley with 19 comments

Tim Smalley
Today, we are pleased to announce that we have launched the all-new bit-tech Blog. It's a feature that we have wanted to add to the site for quite some time now, but only now have we managed to actually roll it out. You see, we've had our share of distractions in the last six months or so, which prevented us from finishing this section of the site off.

For those of you who think we're heading down the path of no return, fear not because we're not going to be telling you about what we ate for breakfast (but I had Shreddies and Weetabix since you asked). Instead, we're going to treat the blog as an area of the site to sound off about things that don't fit into any of the news or article categories.

But wasn't that what columns were for?

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A little column here and little blog there

Posted on 30th Jan 2009 at 13:27 by Jamie Cuthill with 2 comments

Jamie Cuthill
It must be over a year since the editorial team first made noises about a blog on the site and as much as I loved the digs asking "Where's our blog?" and "If we had a blog...", I was elbow deep in more urgent projects.

Fast forward to the Dennis acquisition at the end of 2008 and one path they were keen to take the site down was the creation of bit-tech blogs. Having tied up the loose ends I was currently working on at the end of 2008, I moved into the Dennis tower of London to start working on this very blog you are reading now.

I'm sure Tim will be introducing you to the wonderful insights you can expect to find on these pages but I'm here to explain a little about the format.

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Ten Years On: Doom 3

Ten Years On: Doom 3

Rick looks back at id-software's most controversial game.
Mod of the Month July 2014 in association with Corsair

Mod of the Month July 2014 in association with Corsair

We've picked six of the best in-progress projects - vote for your favourite

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