News

Automatically built client

Posted by admin on March 13, 2018

The Open Build Service is a pretty awesome service which allow for (fairly) easy setup of automatic builds of packages on most major Linux distributions. We're currently using it to automate builds of all Worldforge components on OpenSuSE, Fedora, Debian and Ubuntu. Our own little space can be found here.

Check out the current status of the builds here

Apart from creating RPM and DEB packages there's also support for AppImage, which is an executable format for Linux. We already have it setup to automatically build the Ember client whenever the source changes.

The final AppImage binaries are put here, and a direct link to the latest Ember binary can be found at https://download.opensuse.org/repositories/games:/WorldForge/AppImage/ember-latest-x86_64.AppImage

We would love for users to try the client out and report any issues they are having with it. Packaging stuff on Linux can be a bit tricky.

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Recent changes to the client

Posted by admin on November 26, 2017

Screenshot_20171126_163942.jpeg

There's been a couple of changes to Ember lately. I'll try to summarize them here

 
* The biggest one is that we now use OpenGL 3 and later. Previously we used OpenGL 2. The main reason is that OpenGL 3 has a couple of features that we really benefit from, especially when it comes to instancing techniques. Support for this version should also be solid, with all modern GPUs providing compatible drivers.
Using OpenGL 3 also allows us to use more modern features for diagnostics.
This also sets us up better for a possible migration to OGRE 2.1+.
 
As part of this I've also removed our support for DirectX. The main reason is that I simply don't have time enough to support a second render system, with the need to provide matching HLSL scripts for all of our GLSL shaders. OpenGL works on Windows as well, although performance might suffer in some cases.
 
* The usage of Cg has been completely removed. The Cg shaders that we used have all been rewritten in GLSL.
 
* Almost all use of the standard OGRE Entity class has been replaced with InstancedEntity. This means that we're now much more efficient when rendering multiple entities of the same type.
OGRE is especially inefficient when rendering multiple entities of the same type, since each entity will result in at least one (often many) rendering call. 
Modern GPUs are however designed to easily handle large sets of data, with as few rendering calls as possible.
This is one of the reasons Ember often struggle on seemingly powerful enough GPUs.
With this change performance should improve.
With OGRE 2.1+ a lot of this has been redesigned however, and my impression is that Ember should perform even better on this platform.
 
* Hardware skinning has been added, so that all animated entities are now skinned on the GPU rather than the CPU.
 
* Support for the OGRE profiler has been added, so that an overlay showing time spent in various parts of OGRE can be shown. Enable this through the "Developer" tab in the settings dialog.
 
* We now have a benchmark in place, to be used for evaluating performance. It can be run by issuing the "/benchmark" command while logged in.
 
* Ember will automatically now detect when some media has been changed on disk, and reload it automatically. It currently mainly supports textures. I.e. if you alter a texture while Ember is running it will automatically reload it. Pretty nifty when working with media.

 

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Moving from IRC to Gitter

Posted by admin on November 26, 2017

Worldforge has for quite some time used IRC for official chat. However, since a couple of years the usefulness have been steadily declined. One of the main disadvantages or the IRC system is that there's no easy way to keep offline conversations going. If you're not logged in you will simply miss out on questions asked and answers given. Given the global nature of the Worldforge project, with users in different time zones, this makes most conversations fruitless.

This is why we've now moved to Gitter instead. We hope that this kind of chat functionality will be better at keeping conversations going.

Join our conversation!

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Atlas C++ 0.6.4 released

Posted by admin on July 23, 2017

Atlas-C++ version 0.6.4 has been released and is now available from the WorldForge download site. Atlas-C++ is the standard implementation of the WorldForge Atlas protocol. This release is primarily aimed at developers and users who want to build the WorldForge system for themselves.

 
Major changes in this version:
  • Removal of deprecated C++ "throws" feature which broke build on GCC 7
  • Addition of a debug output Atlas bridge
Source code can be downloaded from the following locations:

Source Code .bz2
Source Code .gz
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AI pathfinding work in progress

Posted by admin on September 28, 2015

Recently I've done some work on adding proper path finding to Cyphesis. This is something we (surprisingly enough one might think) have been lacking for so many years.

The work isn't done yet, but here's a short demonstration of the work in progress.

 

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