Ken's Voyages Around the Sun

Summer of Code (Weekend Version)
Previous Entry :: Next Entry

Read/Post Comments (0)
Share on Facebook
In the spirit of Google's Summer of Code, I'm spending this bachelor weekend furiously working on the next version of my online game, which is sadly in need of major upgrades on almost every front.

Starting with the most important things first, I've built an entirely new interface for the game's maps. My primitive existing system offers about four static maps, with two levels of zoom (in and out), as well as feeble click-panning to move around on them. Plus there's no interactivity with ships or planes or land bases depicted on the map.

Using Google's maps, however, in just a day or two I've blown those old maps away. The new ones offer numerous levels of zooming in and out, infinite drag-scrolling in any direction, ability to center anywhere on the planet, and interactive units.

The latter are not just fun; the interactivity is very much functional. For example, players can now click their units to see information (and perhaps update some of it instantly) and then drag their icons in the direction they want to the units to go, in order to set course without typing them in.

Even better, the game now instantly determines whether the unit will run across land and won't allow the action in that case. The last part's half Google and half me: I have to define areas on the map that are off limits in terms of polygons, and then run the math to determine whether the new projected route crosses any of their sides, but given that it's all graphical now and instant, this is a far, far better solution than the old way.

Only one small problem: I cannot charge subscriptions for the game while using the free version of Google's maps. (Their only non-free version costs $10,000 per year.)

So we'll have to see about converting Google maps to use a similar free alternative, although I suspect the alternative's not as good. Might have to find some other way revenue model to keep this game covering its server and development costs.

Read/Post Comments (0)

Previous Entry :: Next Entry

Back to Top

Powered by JournalScape © 2001-2010 All rights reserved.
All content rights reserved by the author.