Future of “Next Generation” 3D

The next generation 3D (that’s the term I use to describe 3D screens that display 3D stuff in a new way). I experienced a 3D movie for the first time about a year ago, and had to check that blog post to see whether I liked it or not. (I did, if I understood my comments from that blog post properly).

I talked about 3D screens and friend of mine pointed out that there’s new televisions coming… where you won’t need glasses. I know Nintendo has some hand held device that somehow uses two “layers” to create 3D effect (without need for glasses).

Now, will this “next generation” 3D (where the “depth” effect can be so much different than in other movies) happen in games? Will we see more and more next generation 3D that we forget “regular 3D” completely?

I have mixed feelings about this. I can predict that there will be tons of people who say how unhealthy it is for your eyes and how your brain will be messed up and all that… but I feel that we people adapt. I think 3D tech will evolve and at some point it’s not any more unhealthy than staring regular computer screen.

But… will games support it? Will manufacturers go for it?

I find this a really tricky question to be answered. Tons of social & casual games are 2D, and they have become increasingly popular. Wii is doing pretty well in the console side of things, and it has old graphics in it.

I somehow feel that for some games, this next generation 3D will be a breakthrough that will at some point be always used. First person (shooters/rpgs/adventure) games, the 3D will be a hit. (My prediction). I would expect that the immersion of 3D is just so much greater that at some point we won’t see regular FPS games no more. Instead, the new 3D is always there.

Also, some horror games start to use it more and more. There will be more horror games created in 1st person perspective, using the new 3D effect to create more scary environment.

(And as long as games have good writers who understand that horror isn’t about screaming and blood and trying to scare people with sudden loud voices… it’s about waiting for something to happen, this will be good).

In some games, for example RTS games, the new 3D effect won’t be used. Same goes for sports games like NHL, it just won’t cut it.

New 3D requires certain camera view, in my pretty humble opinion. And some camera angles just aren’t good for it, or can just become a mess.

With this all being said… what you think?

(I really think that the 3rd generation 3D will be something that we need. Holograms. We will see graphics that will really fill the living room…. now, that will be something really cool)

Connectivity Is The Key

Sharing.

Sharing stuff is that makes all the difference in the world. Earlier in my life I’ve bought things separately and haven’t given much thought about connections. For example, I’ve bought PC and do PC stuff with it. I have a separate radio/CD player that can play radio. Then I have TV which I use to watch TV.

(Being slightly oversimplistic here to make the point, but hopefully it helps)

This has changed a bit. Now I think about connectivity and sharing things. For example, I can use my PS3 with my tv but also want to connect it to home cinema system to get nice sounds. And then I’ve found information about setting the PS3 media server to speak with PC so that it would be possible to get to play spotify via PS3. And then I’ve given though about a new mobile phone so that I could connect it to different devices and listen to music. And of course this mobile phone could use the wlan to connect to net at home.

And so on, and so on. This is probably very familiar to you guys.

Separately, PS3 (without a network connection for example) loses its value. By making it possible to connect PS3 to other devices, the value of all devices is greater. When adding new things (such as the mobile phone) I can leverage the existing system, thus increasing again the value of all pieces.

And this is due the possibility to connect devices with each other.

Now… to think gaming.

How could your game benefit from connectivity? (Might be a tough question in some areas (for example people who do epic single-player RPGs), but very relevant in some areas (especially games for social platforms))

Some food for thought.

Sofa Is The Best Place to Code (After Bed)

I spend quite a bit of time coding in front of my computer (especially when handling tricky bug hunting…) but there’s two places where I do much of progress:

  • Sofa
  • Bed

I might sit down a sofa and make notes on paper. I might build pseudo code in order to solve certain coding dilemmas. I might lie down and just stare the roof and think. This is all without a computer. Pen & paper you know.

The other place where my code is refined (without even thinking it) is in my bed, while at sleep. I might have some tricky coding puzzle that won’t solve by staring the screen. After failing to see the solution, I might realize that now I just need to stop, go to bed, and see the solution the next morning. And this has yet to fail me.

Sure, I can do “puzzle solving” in front of my computer, but I’ve found it good to prepare and plan the code in my mind while somewhere else. That’s where the hard part happens. That’s where the thinking process takes place.

After the plan is made, it’s easy to sit and start typing the code together.

Now, THIS Is Customer Service

Moment ago I downloaded Plain Sight game from Gamersgate summer sale, and few minutes later made a few tweets.

Check the below discussion (click the image)

Basically: I made a comment about corrupted download file (at 11:20). 11 minutes later (11:31) gamersgate replies to me that they want to help me get it working. And a minute later (11:32) they give me idea of redownloading the whole thing. Few minutes later (11:35) I got the thing working.

If customer service is about following people who talk about your game… you certainly are doing something very right.

Kudos Gamersgate.

Would You Get In To This “Spotify for Games” Indie Portal? (Players-Pay-Monthly-Model)

I’ve been discussing this with the Insiders and they are showing quite green light (as long as certain things are handled “the right way”), and I thought I’d post a poll in this blog as well.

Basically, I’ve been brainstorming this idea about an indie game portal where people could play any games in the portal for paying $9.99 per month. Gross sales (most of it, let’s say for example 70% to 80% of the Real Money) would be split among developers based on how much people play their games in each month.

Links to more detailed posts part 1, part 2 and part 3.

So, what’s your take in this? Would you submit your game to this indie only games portal?
[poll id=38]

Something Odd Has Happened: I’m Checking Email After Twitter

I quite cannot put my finger on it, but after the twitter system has been getting better client software and new systems that help in displaying conversations and doing retweets, things have changed for me. I’m not thinking of “checking email”, I’m thinking “checking Twitter, and then email” nowadays.

Well, at least more than earlier.

I’m following and unfollowing people that I want, and twitter has become an easy way to find out what’s going on. When new games appear, somebody in Twitter is mentioning them. When new relevant game dev stuff occurs, somebody there I follow will tweet about it.

Yes, it’s still 90+% spam but hey, that’s how Internet works: most of the stuff in the Internet is spam anyway and at least you get to choose not to follow people who tweet about stuff like this.

Twitter is also one of the top traffic senders to this site, so that’s another reason why I’m liking it.

There’s 2 gloomy things that are in my mind about twitter. First is potential spam. I haven’t seen pretty close to any bot-generated spam in my account, but there’s already huge amount of fake accounts and spambots tweeting rubbish (which I don’t see, since I don’t follow those bots). My fear is that these spammers somehow manage to make things messed up. Don’t know how, but still think it might happen one day.

The second perhaps bigger issue is that there’s no revenue model for Twitter. I wouldn’t be surprised if one day they’d shut down the whole service. Maybe Twitter has grown beyond that point, but it’s still totally free and is sucking money as we speak. Facebook figured out how to make donuts. Twitter hasn’t. As much as I like “free stuff”, there’s the problem with free that somebody needs to pay it. I’m not saying I’d pay anything for Twitter (I think) but if they don’t figure out a way to earn donuts, they cannot continue this thing forever.

Meanwhile, Twitter is proving to be a pretty slick tool for game developers in quite many ways and I feel it is something developers shouldn’t ignore. You can ask and get help. You can network. You can throw quick messages without stealing other people’s precious time (as you gotta keep it short you know).

I’m no Twitter fan, but growing to like it a bit more.

It’s bit like a virtual pub where you can bring the folks you like.

And that’s perhaps why I sometimes look forward to checking Twitter instead of my email inbox.

I Like Threatening People

I’ve added a “Like” button on my blog (see the right side menu). In case you’d happen to like this blog… then feel free to click that button.

No pressures, but I will release the air from your bicycle wheels (and might smack it with a large trout too) if you don’t click the button.

No point risking it. Right?

Whoa, It’s Already 23:23?

Today I’ve been doing a lot of work to get my game online with certain functionality… and did a bit of testing with help of couple of chaps (thanks to you, you know who you are).

It’s amazing how time flies when you get into the zone and have 110% clear idea of what you are supposed to do.

Better get some food (I’m hungry right now) and then transform my body to the bed. (My mind probably joins me as soon as it closes a few loops…)