Contemporary Games Can Take Up To Three Years To Develop

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In the hypercompetitive online gaming world a couple of milliseconds of lag can be the difference between virtual life and death, and the inability to scale up with demand can kill an entire game title. In the last two quarters, more than 60 new gaming companies have moved to SoftLayer's global platform, frequently migrating from commodity cloud platforms because of problems with cost, latency, availability and raw performance. Hundreds of the top mobile, PC and social games with more than 100 million active players, are now supported by SoftLayer's infrastructure platform. With SoftLayer, gaming companies can roll out virtual and bare-metal servers along with a suite of networking, security and storage solutions on demand and in real time. This choice and agility allows games companies to have the capacity they need exactly when they need it. SoftLayer's global pl... (more)

INSERTING and REPLACING 2013 International CES Exhibitor Profiles: A through M

Profiles for CableJive, FiveFive, LifeProof and LiveViewGPS have been inserted in release dated January 3, 2013. The corrected release reads: 2013 INTERNATIONAL CES EXHIBITOR PROFILES: A THROUGH M The 2013 International CES, the world’s largest consumer technology event, takes place January 8 - 11, 2013 at the Las Vegas Convention Center (LVCC), the LVH, and The Venetian. Listed below are CES 2013 exhibitor profiles (A through M). Links to important information: 2013 International CES Press Kit CES Exhibitor News: http://www.cesweb.org/News/Exhibitor-Releases.aspx Follow the International CES on twitter: @intlCES Follow breaking CES Exhibitor News on twitter: [email protected] Download the CES Mobile App: http://app.core-apps.com/2013ces Exhibitor Press Kits (A through M): bēm wireless; Behringer; Canonical / Ubuntu; Canopy; CSR; Dacor; Directed; Electric Friends; Genesis Advan... (more)

Java Games Development - Part 2

Part 1 of this series appeared in the August issue of Java Developer's Journal (Vol. 8, issue 8). JDJ: I'd just like to pick up on that 85% portability goal Jeff mentioned earlier. I'm just going on assumptions, but I think if you were developing a title for the PS2, GameCube, and XBox you would attempt to make sure that only the graphics and audio functionality were platform-specific and make the rest of the game as portable as possible. Seventy-five to eighty-five percent portability would therefore seem to be an achievable goal in C/C++, in which case Java has just lost one of its advantages, has it not? Cas P: Usually I'm even more optimistic than Jeff about something here. I think I can achieve 100% portability. By focusing on a "pure Java platform" like the LWJGL (Lightweight Java Gaming Library), which, once you realize you're coding to the LWJGL Java API, not... (more)

What's New with Director MX 2004

For more than a decade, Director has set the standard for multimedia development. In fact, Director was the first multimedia authoring tool to combine animation with a scripting language so that developers could create interactive presentations, games, or computer-based training courses. It was also the first product that allowed authors to create multimedia content that could be deployed to both Mac and Windows (prior to this cross-platform innovation, developers literally had to double their work to reach both users). With numerous innovations, Director has made an incredible impact in the multimedia industry. By the mid-1990s more than 70% of all multimedia CD-ROM titles were produced with Director. In 1996, Director fundamentally changed the way users experienced the Internet with the introduction of Shockwave Player, which brought multimedia to the Web. Direc... (more)

Star Trek Technology for Java3D

The Star Trek universe has inspired many technology ideas but I'm disappointed I don't have a transporter yet. One Star Trek technology that has been available for sometime is the particle system. No, this is not an exotic propulsion system for your flying car. The particle system was invented to animate the Genesis effect in Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan. While the Genesis device was used to transform a barren planet into one full of life, we can adopt this technology for more modest effects in Java3D. In the Beginning In previous articles, we've focused on creating planetary surfaces with Java3D. One challenging area of graphics programming is rendering irregular or ill-defined objects like clouds, smoke, or fireworks. William Reeves faced that challenge when Lucasfilm was asked to create a planetary creation effect called the Genesis effect for Star Trek II: Wra... (more)

XNA or Game Development for Everyone - Part 2

In Part 1 of this article, we started to develop a small racing game using XNA Game Studio Express 2.0. We learned about the game loop and how it’s implemented by the XNA (by using the Update and Draw methods) framework. We also created our first track on the screen and four cars started moving on the screen, but, sadly enough, they left the track and weren’t seen again. What does that mean? It means we should take a closer look at collision detection. In addition we should design a menu with different options. You might remember that we want to have a racing game with three computer-driven cars or a network game with one or more other humans playing against us. Sounds easy? Well, it’s not that hard, but we’ll see that a few small changes in the behavior will lead to a few other problems that have to be solved (i.e., a game menu means we have to use so-called game s... (more)

XNA, Game Development for Everyone

Maybe some of you remember a time when we created a sprite on a piece of graph paper and afterwards hacked zeroes and ones in so we could see something eventually move on a TV screen. I have to admit that those days have been gone for a long time and a lot of things have happened in IT since I developed simple games on my C64. And one of these new things is XNA Game Studio (the current version is 2.0). Is this something for you? Well, maybe you have a good idea for a computer game, but don't know how to do it. In the past game development was very hard, but it's become easier (I wouldn't call it easy now, but it's a lot easier than it used to be). And wouldn't it be great if you could deploy your game not only to your PC, but also to an Xbox 360 and play with or against a friend on his own PC or Xbox 360 over the network? Ah, I see I've got your attention. What Is... (more)

XNA or Game Development for Everyone - Part 2

In Part 1 of this article, we started to develop a small racing game using XNA Game Studio Express 2.0. We learned about the game loop and how it's implemented by the XNA (by using the Update and Draw methods) framework. We also created our first track on the screen and four cars started moving on the screen, but, sadly enough, they left the track and weren't seen again. What does that mean? It means we should take a closer look at collision detection. In addition we should design a menu with different options. You might remember that we want to have a racing game with three computer-driven cars or a network game with one or more other humans playing against us. Sounds easy? Well, it's not that hard, but we'll see that a few small changes in the behavior will lead to a few other problems that have to be solved (i.e., a game menu means we have to use so-called game s... (more)

Why Social Media Check-Ins Could Bridge the ROBO Gap

Badges, Passports, the Creator, the Founder, the Mayor, getting a Pin, picking up a raccoon..This is the language of the newest phenomenon to hit the location-enabled social media marketing world. I am talking about Social Networking Games. No longer only for geeks and geocachers, these are real tools for seeing where your friends are, in real time, as they “check-in” to locations and share what they are doing. Since the device knows where it is, you can only check in to a location you are visiting. While mobile location sharing is not new, incentives that tap our competitive side offered by a “game” are, and this makes all the difference. The “game” element is that you earn virtual rewards in the form of pins or badges to fuel participation and interaction with real locations. If, for example, you are the first to register a place you want to check-in to, you can... (more)

Amazon Launches High Performance Cloud – Hackers in Love

Calling it a "nuclear-powered bulldozer", yesterday, Amazon announced and blogged about its newest cloud infrastructure service, the "Cluster GPU Instance", which delivers supercomputer calculation power for as little as $2.10 per hour.  The new instance type employs the same NVIDIA Tesla processor used in three of the five fastest supercomputers.  It is rated at 515 gigaflops (515 billion double-precision floating point calculations per second) and each Amazon instance employs two of them, giving each instance more than one teraflop of processing power.  Amazon further allows instances to be clustered "up through and above 128 nodes" for even more power.  Theoretically, a 128-node cluster of the new Amazon EC2 instances would qualify as the 50th fastest computer in the world.  The new instance type enables a wide variety of calculation-intensive workloads for applica... (more)

Spoon Launches Cloud Computing Gaming Service

Spoon, a Seattle-based virtualization and Cloud Computing company specializing in letting users launch desktop apps via a plug-in but with no further installs, has launched its Spoon Cloud Gaming service, a free service that delivers on-demand desktop games. More than 200 titles were offered at launch, including Jewel Quest and Farm Frenzy as well as the massively multiplayer game Second Life. Gaming seems to be a natural fit with Cloud Computing's elasticity. Company Founder and CEO Kenji Obata is making this theory real, noting that Spoon is "(bringing) virtualization to the gaming community," adding that the company's approach is to use "a hybrid of remote and local computing resources, reducing bandwidth requirements while ensuring smooth, uninterrupted game play." Sounds like a trend to me. ... (more)