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  • PGD News Round-up for March & April 2012

    Welcome to another PGD News Round-up! This March and April we had a lot of stuff going on. Unfortunately my day job and other game-related projects have kept me from keeping up once again. Fret not however because here it is the News Round-up for March and April 2012!







    glCapsViewer 0.7

    Sascha Willems has updated his very handy OpenGL capability viewing tool to version 0.7a. This version fixes some database uploading issues on Windows and Linux. An update for Mac OS X is promised to follow soon.

    You can read about the update at www.saschawillems.de!


    Smart Mobile Studio Beta & Awesome Demos

    The hottest new Object Pascal development tool for JavaScript and HTML5 is now out in Beta. This first Beta version was pushed to release so that it can be used as part of the 2nd PGD Challenge competition. In case you haven't read any of the news about what Smart Mobile Studio is, it is a compiler that will take an Object Pascal project and convert it into a JavaScript "app" with full HTML5 support.

    You can learn more about the newest kid on the block at op4js.optimalesystemer.no!

    Also it's author Jon Lennart Aasenden has been showcasing a lot of game related demos, libraries and cool projects. Very cool stuff you should check out if you are interested in the HTML 5 platform for game development. Thank you to

    http://op4js.optimalesystemer.no/201...ves-in-sparta/
    http://op4js.optimalesystemer.no/201...e-programmers/
    http://op4js.optimalesystemer.no/201...oded-in-smart/
    http://op4js.optimalesystemer.no/201...rted-to-smart/
    http://minimal.be/lab/Sprite3D/



    Screenshots from some of the above linked to demos


    Speaking of great demos and examples. It was also announced that Sprite3D.js has also been bundled with Smart to allow use of it's very cool capabilities on HTML5 apps using JavaScript. Below is a great video of a Mario Kart clone created with Sprite3D.


    Sprite3D Mario Kart clone demo


    MEDevPascal

    Seems like your options for IDEs, compilers and other various platforms just keeps getting bigger and bigger. Here is another IDE which makes use of the Free Pascal compiler and acts as a multi-platform code editor only environment as an alternative to Lazarus. The interface is very common to some of the current IDEs out there, but it's developer is trying to keep with simplicity of design. This project may appeal to game developers in particular since it seems to focus only on features that a game developer may want versus a business application developer capable IDE, like Delphi.

    You can read more about this new idea on Felipe Ferreira's blog site at pixeldeveloper.blogspot.com.br.


    Embarcadero's Academic Program

    It seems that Embarcadero has managed to sneak in an academic program past us. It's been talked about for some time, but without as much of a peep it's finally been brought out without much public talk of an announcement. Are you a student programmer and want to get a good industry standard development environment at a good price? Maybe you can pick up Delphi for a reduced cost.

    Read more about Embarcadero's academic program at www.codegear.com.


    Free Stuff from DAZ 3D

    DAZ 3D is offering free 3D art software for a limited time. Products include: Bryce 7, DAZ Studio 4 and Hexagon 2.5. You can get these 32-bit graphics design tools for Windows or Mac OS X.

    Check out this free offer at www.daz3d.com.


    Asphyre Sphinx 2.0.3

    Yuriy has released a bug-fix update to Asphyre Sphinx. This latest update fixes an issue with clearing depth/stencil buffers for Direct3D 9 in FireMonkey-based applications on Windows and an issue when black screen appeared in FireMonkey-based applications running on Mac platform, while using Delphi XE 2 and its PAServer with Update 4.

    You can read about and discuss this in the PGD Forums right here or get it at www.afterwarp.net.





    Jason Farmer's Guns and DelphiX Tutorials

    An old firend contacted me a short while ago an noticed a request for some of his old projects since disappearing after the Cerebral Bicycle Company website got taken down some years ago. Jason was great enough to repost his old DelphiX tutorials on his new blog site for his web development projects.

    Also his popular game project Guns disappeared with his and his brothers old game dev group site so he has also gratiously posted it and it's source code for us all to download and enjoy. It was developed with Delphi using the DelphiX DirectX component library and requires them to compile. Though they could be updated and ported to Lazarus to be ran on other platforms.

    Here is the old DelphiX tutorials in all their golden age glory at www.songbird-creations.com.

    And here is the notorious Gun game project at www.songbird-creations.com.





    Dr. Bob Helps iOS 5.1 Delphi Devs

    Well any Delphi developer who has been working on apps for iOS already knows that it's not exactly a super smooth ride onto the moble Apple platform, however with the latest Delphi XE2 update, there have been a few extra bumps in the road. Luckily Dr. Bob is there to help you along. Have a read on some important information the Pascal code veteran himself has to pass on about fixing up your Delphi-made iOS projects.

    Read his article on his blog at www.bobswart.nl.


    Lazarus International Games Contest 2012

    Yup, it's happening again. The Brazilian based, but internatonally ran, Lazarus International Games Contest has been announced. Unlike the PGD Challenge and the PGD Annual before it, you've got the whole year to submit your game entry.

    The rules are somewhat unclear as to what restrictions you have other than it obviously should be made with Lazarus, but does that mean you need to use the LCL? Or can we strip away whatever we want and then make a game as long as it's made with Lazarus? It's true that a little extra explaination would be helpful, but all the same these events are worth the time and effort to help expose these great open source tools, meaning both Free Pascal and Lazarus, as fun game making capable developer tools.

    Check out the contest at lazarusbrasil.org.



    Last Year's Winner, LazGoBang


    2nd PGD Challenge

    The 2nd PGD Challenge is now in it's finaly weekend. After the 29th of April the FTP site will close and all the finaly entires will be in. From there we'll move onto the scoring and judging stage where our judges, Jim McKeeth and Johannes Stein will play all the games and indicate where bonus points will be awarded, score from the detailed score categories and provide up to 3 major cons and 3 major pros for each entry as feedback for each submitted entry.

    However it's not over yet so everyone keep at it and do what you can this last weekend. And be sure to have your entry uploaded at least by your time midnight to make sure you don't miss the deadline. At test upload might be a good idea to make sure you don't have any problems last minute just before the closing deadline.

    The full rules in detail have been posted here.


    Asteroids for Delphi

    Well I'm not sure how exciting this is, but it seems that our good friend at delphi.about.com has discovered that a neat little Asteroids clone has been bundled with Delphi XE2. This neat little oddity looks and feels like the original and apparently there a few other games that have been bundled in the sample folder too.

    Check out the article on this at delphi.about.com.




    Sultan's Labyrinth Sailing to iOS

    That's right hidden object game fans, you too can get to play this Object Pascal made title on your iPhone and iPad soon enough. The newly renamed Seven Sails makes games for Big Fish Games and other publishers whos titles also include other hidden object, point-and-click games like Abra Academy and The Heritage.

    Sultan's Labyrinth makes use of the ZenGL game library and it's ability to support iOS is what helps make this port possible.

    Check out the very brief announcement on their blog at www.sevensails.com.br or get it just released at Big Fish Games for Mac right here.




    Sultan's Labyrinth Game Trailer


    Hot Community Topics

    Though the news posting has been slow, the community forums have not been. There has been all kinds of buzz going on around the PGD community. Here is the highlights.

    There has been some interest in working with demoscene MOD style tracking music files and Paul Nicholls has been looking for a good playback library, hopefully something cross-platform without any needed dynamic libraries. Read about it or give ideas here.

    Super Vegeta has released source for his cool in-game console which was used in his Alexland game. You can check that out and leave feedback here.

    Benjamin Rosseaux, aka BeRo has been kind enough to share with us his translated headers for the integer-only OGG Vorbis decorder library, Tremor. Check that out here.

    Darthman has been releaseing some cool updates to his Quad-Engine development tools unleashing all kinds of new features. Check those out in this thread. Or look up the Quad-Engine website at www.quad-engine.com.



    Last, but not least be sure to check out all the super cool developer diaries from those posting their work on their entries to the PGD Challenge in the 2nd PGD Challenge: The Journey event forum.


    Well that's it for these two last months sorry for the delay in news posts, I'm hoping that I can pick up the pace the rest of the year. There really is a lot going on out there and we don't want you to fall behind on everything that is going on.

    If you have something cool that you know about, let us know! Send me an email at contact@pascalgamer.com or if you have a PGD account, PM me directly! However if it's your own personal project or interest then don't be afraid to post about it in the forums. It's your community and you make it what it will be for others so they can do the same.

    Until next time, happy coding!

    - Jason McMillen
    Pascal Game Development
    Webmaster / Co-Founder / Community Leader

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