Category Archive: Games

Like most of my generation, I do play computer games occasionally. This category, you guessed it, is for when I have something to say about a game I’ve played.

Mar
17
2011

Nuclex Framework R1404 Released!

A few hours ago, I uploaded a new release of the Nuclex Framework to CodePlex. There has been an intermediate release, R1323, which I didn’t announce here because it was more or less just a stop-gap measure to stop reports for issues in the old (old, old) R1242 release where my Nuclex.Input library was still …

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Dec
09
2010

XNA Sprite Font Quality

There has been a discussion on the XNA forums regarding a slight decrease in the visual quality of SpriteFonts from XNA 3.1 to XNA 4.0: XNA 4.0 renders SpriteFont differently (and not for the better). There are two changes that might have impacted visual quality: XNA 4.0 uses premultiplied alpha everywhere (whereas XNA 3.1 processed …

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Nov
06
2010

DynamicVertexBuffer versus DrawUserPrimitives, Round 2

More than a year ago, I did some benchmarking in XNA 3.1, comparing the vertex throughput I could achieve on my GeForce 8800 via XNA’s DynamicVertexBuffer class versus just calling GraphicsDevice.DrawUserPrimitives(). Here’s my earlier benchmark: Efficiently Rendering Dynamic Vertices. In all cases, DrawUserPrimitives() was marginally faster than the DynmicVertexBuffer, but it appeared to be a …

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Oct
02
2010

Nuclex Framework R1242 Released!

There’s a new release of the Nuclex Framework available on CodePlex! The new release adds a new library, Nuclex.Input, which is a very lightweight library that adds seamless support for DirectInput game pads and joysticks, well-behaving keyboard text input, event-based input and the ability to mock any kind of input in your unit tests. Instead …

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Sep
13
2010

MVC in Games

UML diagram of the monolithic design approach to IslandWar
In the game I’m currently working on, it appears that I’m slowly drifting towards a design that’s a close resemblance of the Model-View-Controller (MVC) pattern, despite originally rejecting the idea because I believed it would require my game world to expose too much of its internal data just so the view could keep track of …

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Sep
02
2010

Input Mocking in XNA

UML diagram of the design for the Nuclex Input library
I have updated my input library to a level where I think I can release it into the Nuclex Framework now. The design was tailored to make the input manager mockable (replaceable with a dummy object for unit testing), but the effort of mocking the entire input manager (versus just one input device) on an …

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Aug
23
2010

New Component: Nuclex.Input

Developers following my twitter feed may already know that in the past few days, I’ve been working on a new component for the Nuclex Framework: Nuclex.Input. This component aims to solve all problems I ever had with input devices in XNA It’s a very simple library that provides input device classes similar to the ones …

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Aug
17
2010

Quo Vadis, Input System?

A chat pad for the Xbox 360
I’ve spent some time thinking about how input is handled by my GUI library. One issue I didn’t cover in its initial design is that people might want to use the GUI library at the same time as their game is running (think of a command palette in a strategy game). I’ve already got some …

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Aug
13
2010

To GameComponent or not to GameComponent

UML diagram of the old Nuclex GameComponent design
XNA provides a neat little system for you to organize your game’s different parts in: GameComponents. You can use them to modularize your game’s subsystems, eg. have a GuiComponent, PhysicsComponent, SceneGraphComponent etc. so you avoid having all that code in your Game class, or can use them for your actual game objects in smaller games. …

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Aug
11
2010

Using Ninject with SunBurn

First, let me say sorry if I seemed to be absent for the past months. I was quite burned out and didn’t want to do much with computers during that time :). My “XNA Game Architecture” series was left hanging, and right when it got interesting, too. I’ll try to find the time to continue …

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