I’ve been using Blitz3D to develop the couple of newest Dead Wake versions, but recently decided to finally switch to BlitzMax (and Leadwerks). Since I have strong background in BASIC languages (started with C64 Basic, then QBasic, Visual Basic, Blitz 3D’s basic and now finally BlitzMax’s basic like syntax) this feels like a natural progression from me. I feel completely familiar with BlitzMax (which I could not say about C++ nor C#, although there are many similarities in BlitzMax). With Object Oriented programming support (to pretty good extent), BlitzMax feels like a good choice.
The couple of weeks I’ve spent learning the tools has given me idea about the tools and I must say that I should have listened to those people who mentioned this option earlier… Anyway, what’s done is done, and now I’m working on to get Dead Wake ported to BlitzMax. Basically this means also refactoring some existing code, dropping some things away and doing some new stuff.
I’m using Leadwerks game engine which is absolutely awesome (something that you really need to go and buy right away. It’s dirt cheap compared to stuff it has). I will do a lengthy review about the Leadwerks qualities in the nearly future, but basically it has almost everything I need for my Dead Wake zombie game and since I can program using BlitzMax, I feel like I’m home.
I did a small stress test to see how well it works. Here’s 200 separately animated zombies (even though they all animate the same frames), with lighting, shadows – and all plays smoothly. In terms of gameplay this is important, since after I get the physics, particles, scenery, AI, etc. in game, I expect to see about 50-100 simultaneously zombies on screen. I think there aren’t many zombie games (Dead Rising comes to my mind) that would have this many zombies simultaneously on screen. In terms of gameplay that’s an important factor. Here’s the clip:
I’m pleased with the result and feel good about taking this step forward into a more advanced tools that I can use well with my skills. Anybody looking into 3D game development engine and easy-to-use tools should check out BlitzMax and Leadwerks engine.