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Re: Need help with sdks.

Pedro Medeiros wrote:
> I started programming my RPG for Linux, but I still
> haven't figured out what lib I should use. Reading some
> messages from this list, I realized that, although it's a
> 2D RPG, a 3D SDK would make the job much easier,
> because I could use opengl/glide hardware support and
> still scale, rotate, alpha-blend etc. How bad would this
> game look if I try to run it without hardware acceleration?
> Any comments about that? :)

It won't *look* any different - but the frame rate is
likely to suck pretty badly I'm afraid.

> I could use bare Mesa support or a cool SDK, such as
> PLIB or Crystal Space. The fact is that I found PLIB
> difficult to use in 2D games. I don't even know how to
> start. The AC format is used in shareware 3D application
> that I'm not willing to download. I don't have time and
> diskspace to try every SDK around, so I'm gathering
> those that give the most impressive results. But I still
> need time to look how each one works.

Yes - the higher levels of API such as you'd find in the
SSG component (the scene graph) are not really applicable
to 2D (although they could be used that way).

You'd be better off programming your low level sprite code
in raw OpenGL and dumping any kind of SDK layer.  If you
are committed to going the OpenGL route - and want to
support el'cheapo 3D cards like the Voodoo-1 and 2, then
you'll need to draw menu's and dialogs using OpenGL too,
and PLIB can definitely help there.  You might also want
the font, audio and joystick code too.

Each of those components is pretty separate from the others,
so it's easy to pick the ones you want and dump the others.

> I found later this page
> http://www.radix.net/~dunbar/index.html
> where there is yet another SDK with tons of features. I
> feel completely lost. Any suggestions, please? :)

I have no advice!  It's impossible to tell just by looking at
a couple of web pages.  It could be the greatest thing or
a pile of crap...there is really no way to know without
investing the time to learn the API, write a couple of
test programs, etc.  A lot of what makes an API great
is personal preferences: Do you like a procedural interface?
A data-driven interface?  An object oriented interface?
Do you like the function names to have_lots_of_underscores
or to be namedLikeThis?

You feeling of 'lost'ness is not unusual when there are so
many different API's floating around offering so many
overlapping but not *quite* identical services.


Steve Baker                (817)619-2657 (Vox/Vox-Mail)
Raytheon Systems Inc.      (817)619-2466 (Fax)
Work: sjbaker@hti.com      http://www.hti.com
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