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Mission Interface for Flight Simulator (Read 1844 times)
9th Apr, 2007 at 8:52am

lionheart   Offline
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Phoenix Arizona

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Hey guys, and Andy, since you are probably the room moderator.

For those that dont know, I am making a gamepack that will feature missions, airfields, and aircraft.  I am presently going the route of using HTML pages to make the 'Interface'.  What it will feature are graphics and background music to set the 'mood' of the pilot before he flies.  

Further more, the Interface will not require FS to be running.  At the point you click the 'shiny, glowing, beautiful, glistening, red button', (excerpt from Renn and Stimpy), the HTML link 'contacts' the FLT file and FS boots up into the flight scenario.

I wish to do this as the stand alone that will function with both FS2004 and FSX.  

However, I am really curious.  There are a couple of games out there, 'Freight Dogs' and 'FS Cargo Pilot' that have interactive game scenario's and work with giving people rewards and such, like the new FSX does.

So..........   I was just wondering if anyone knows the 'system' or platform that they use to make these gamepacks?  Is this what they call C++?  I have no idea about any of it and am really wanting to know the basics of it.


Bill
 

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Reply #1 - 13th Apr, 2007 at 1:10pm

foxwolfen   Offline
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the less I think, the
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It seems to me all you want to is extract the data that the mission engine (task completion, time, rewards earned etc) stores and then do some sort of statistical analysis/organization to it.

This can be done, I suspect, by using the game's Mission API. Once the data is exported you can run it through any processor (I do not mean CPU) to format or analyze the output.

XML can do it and might be more accessible to you than say C# (the latest version of Objective C) or .NET. Irrespective of what you decide to program with (you could even do it in Perl or Python), it will not be trivial.

XML is of course the main data descriptor used by MS these days - and no they did not invent it, they just made a mess of it as they always do. XML is also why DX10 will not be the "holy grail" for performance that everybody hopes it will be - MSXML is a slow, lame dog of an XML interpreter and unless that changes, FSX will continue to suffer in a big way (In this Fr. Bill was right when we had our C vs XML discussion many moons ago).

Cheers
Shad
 

Multimedia File Viewing and Clickable Links are available for Registered Members only!!  You need to Login or Register may not be smart enough to do everything, but I am dumb enough to try." - Beast Boy&&&&Core2 Quad Q6600 @ 2700mhz OC , ASUS P5E, 4GB OZC Hi-Perf PC6400 DDR2,  Nvidia 8800GTX 786MB GDDR3, 2 x Sata 3.0
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Reply #2 - 13th Apr, 2007 at 8:28pm

lionheart   Offline
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Phoenix Arizona

Gender: male
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Thanks Shad,

Its interesting how these guys are doing these new games, and started out with FS9 as the platform before Missions were here.

I have carried my questions over to GameDev.com in their forums.  From what I am told, its one of 'the' biggest gaming designer forums around.  Already met an ex-FS developer there already. 

Thanks for the mini-tutorial on XML.  Scary....  Over there, alot of people are wondering if OpenGL (new version) is better then DX10.  It appears that OpenGL shows more details and faster, so it seems.  Dont know the realities of it.

Much to learn........

Bill
 

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Reply #3 - 14th Apr, 2007 at 1:48pm

foxwolfen   Offline
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There is no debate. OpenGL is nearly twice as efficient as DX9.

While DX10 promises much, it has delivered nothing. It will continue to do so until the game developers start releasing games that use the Unified Shader Architecture which supposedly off-loads more tasks to the GPU.

While this is theoretically a good thing, unless the algorithms are significantly more efficient than Shaders 2.0 or 3.0 then it will not likely improve performance much unless there is a hardware based geometry or physics accelerator on the card.

But, obviously any hardware based solution will also be available to OpenGL developers. So what does DX10 really bring to the table?

The main problem is this:

MS knows that DX10 is quite a bit inferior to OpenGL. So OpenGL now runs through the DX10 layer and is "interpreted". MS claims that there is "no penalty" but this is not true. It effectively destroys OGL on Windows (fun eh?).

What you may see is a lot of people keeping Windows XP as OGL does not need Vista to run, and when OGL (and OAL) start making use of the new hardware features coming down the pipeline I suspect a WinXP box running OGL will scream by comparison to a Vista equivalent.

In native form (OGL in windows still has to contend with components of DX9) in Linux or Mac, it will of course be considerably faster still. Apple is making pretty good headway into the desktop market and this can only help them.

What I am finding odd, is that DX10 is claimed to not run on an XBox... yet this is what MS wants us to use for gaming in the future. Makes it a bit costly to be a game developer these days if you have all these competing platforms.

While none of this will "destroy" MS (not even close), it will hurt the bottom line a bit and I am sure they will receive a whole lot of shareholder grief for what appears to be some shortsighted thinking.

Cheers
Shad
 

Multimedia File Viewing and Clickable Links are available for Registered Members only!!  You need to Login or Register may not be smart enough to do everything, but I am dumb enough to try." - Beast Boy&&&&Core2 Quad Q6600 @ 2700mhz OC , ASUS P5E, 4GB OZC Hi-Perf PC6400 DDR2,  Nvidia 8800GTX 786MB GDDR3, 2 x Sata 3.0
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Reply #4 - 15th Apr, 2007 at 9:38am

lionheart   Offline
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Very very interesting....   

Quote:
What I am finding odd, is that DX10 is claimed to not run on an XBox...


I think that MS has 'something' in X-Box that they wish to keep secret, and that is that it might be easily converted into a super computer.  When I was temporarily into electronics retail sales, we were there on the release of the X-Box and kids were coming in talking already about hacking the code for converting the computers (X-Box 'is' a computer) into running WinXP on it.  It wasnt even released yet and all these kids were talking about it already.

Imagine such a powerful platform with an OS in it....

Now, (this is what I am thinking), what if you could make a 'componentized' OS?  Get rid of all the things you dont need.  What if you could have a 'bare bones' OS that ran smoothly?

For instance, you could run Win98 on 'basic' programs.  (I used to do that, shutting most everything down in order to raise frame rates for FS2000).  I remember several years back, someone released a program that you could 'activate' that turned XP into 'gaming mode', shutting down alot of non-essential system hungry programs.  It later disappeared, but it was quite interesting and ran good on my system, though I am sure it may have had drawbacks, such as defense systems perhaps being shut down.

I have been formulating a concept for windows in which you would put a game on a section of the hard drive in which it is its own drive (seperate from C: ) and then have a 'shell' OS that would run it.  No windows....    Just game.   (just......   game.......    ).  Imagine the amount of power that is freed from the processor(s) and memory.

Imagine....

And that is what I think X-Box does...   

Bill
 

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