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Leadwerks Seeks to put Game Development on Linux

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Linux is a solid and secure operating system that’s perfect for gaming, but at this time Windows remains the lead platform for PC games. One company wants to change that by putting the game development process right on Linux. Leadwerks Software has launched a Kickstarter campaign to bring their game development software to the Linux operating system. The company says this will allow users to build and play games without ever leaving the Linux operating system.

 

The company's Kickstarter page lists three goals for the campaign. First, they point out that most Linux games are ported over from Windows, rather than being developed natively on Linux. The company wants to change this by putting the game development process on Linux.

 

Second, the company hopes to expand the Linux library of games. They say that putting game development tools in the hands of Linux users will allow more Linux games to be built, and can even lead to Linux-exclusive titles.

 

Leadwerks is known for advanced graphics, and the company says they want to bring this to Linux. This will let Linux users play AAA games that run natively on Linux, instead of going through emulators like WINE. The company points out that the superior performance of OpenGL on Linux makes it the perfect platform for AAA games.

 

Leadwerks is also running a Greenlight campaign to put Leadwerks on Steam and integrate Steam features to streamline the game development process.

 

Leadwerks Software aims to raise $20,000 in 45 days to build Leadwerks for Linux. "We're really excited to be working with Steam and the Linux community," said Josh, founder of Leadwerks Software. "We think there's a unique opportunity here. The timing is right. I think Linux is really ready for mainstream PC gaming, and we really just want to take Linux gaming to the next level".



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Good news for Linux users. smile.png I have never used it but I am sure I would make my game suited for linux when the possibility is there.

 

When you look at the humble bundle donations, linux has always to highest amount of donation average per donation. So my guess is that the linux community would be happy to support this.

 

Question about pricing?

If you have Leadwerks 3.0 (windows & mac), what do you pay for 3.1?

If you are a BACKER for Linux (100$) do I also get 3.1 for Windows and Mac?

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If you wish to go that route, you can get Leadwerks 3.1 through the KS campaign. I won't comment on upgrade pricing at this time because there's too many unknown factors.

 

From my point of view, I don't really care where the campaign goal amount comes from, as long as it is hit. If it succeeds, that tells me there's probably a good market for a Linux product with high-end graphics. If it fails, that tells me Linux users probably wouldn't have been interested anyways.

 

I think it's more up to the Linux community than the existing Leadwerks users. This tells me whether Linux is a growth market or whether we should ignore it. It's not perfect, but this is so much more efficient than building first and then finding out whether there is demand.

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  • Blog Entries

    • By Josh in Josh's Dev Blog 1
      Documentation in Leadwerks 5 will start in the header files, where functions descriptions are being added directly like this:
      /// <summary> /// Sets the height of one terrain point. /// </summary> /// <param name="x">Horizontal position of the point to modify.</param> /// <param name="y">Vertical position of the point to modify.</param> /// <param name="height">Height to set, in the range -1.0 to +1.0.</param> virtual void SetHeight(const int x, const int y, const float height); This will make function descriptions appear automatically in Visual Studio, to help you write code faster and more easily:

      Visual Studio can also generate an XML file containing all of the project's function descriptions as part of the build process. The generated XML file will serve as the basis for the online documentation and Visual Studio Code extension for Lua. This is how I see it working:

      I am also moving all things private to private members. I found a cool trick that allows me to create read-only members. In the example below, you can access the "position" member to get an entity's local position, but you cannot modify it without using the SetPosition() method. This is important because modifying values often involves updating lots of things in the engine under the hood and syncing data with other threads. This also means that any method Visual Studio displays as you are typing is okay to use, and there won't be any undocumented / use-at-your-own risk types of commands like we had in Leadwerks 4.
      class Entity { private: Vec3 m_position; public: const Vec3& position; }; Entity::Entity() : position(m_position) {} It is even possible to make constructors private so that the programmer has to use the correct CreateTerrain() or whatever command, instead of trying to construct a new instance of the class, with unpredictable results. Interestingly, the constructor itself has to be added as a friend function for this to work.
      class Terrein { private: Terrain(); public: friend shared_ptr<World> CreateTerrain(shared_ptr<World>, int, int, int) }; The only difference is that inside the CreateTerrain function I have to do this:
      auto terrain = shared_ptr<Terrain>(new Terrain); instead of this, because make_shared() doesn't have access to the Terrain constructor. (If it did, you would be able to create a shared pointer to a new terrain, so we don't want that!)
      auto terrain = make_shared<Terrain>(); I have big expectations for Leadwerks 5, so it makes sense to pay a lot of attention to the coding experience you will have while using this. I hope you like it!
    • By Josh in Josh's Dev Blog 0
      A new update is available for beta testers.
      Terrain
      The terrain building API is now available and you can begin working with it, This allows you to construct and modify terrains in pure code. Terrain supports up to 256 materials, each with its own albedo, normal, and displacement maps. Collision and raycasting are currently not supported.
      Fast C++ Builds
      Precompiled headers have been integrated into the example project. The Debug build will compile in about 20 seconds the first run, and compile in just 2-3 seconds thereafter. An example class is included which shows how to add files to your game project for optimum compile times. Even if you edit one of your header files, your game will still compile in just a few seconds in debug mode! Integrating precompiled headers into the engine actually brought the size of the static libraries down significantly, so the download is only about 350 MB now.
      Enums Everywhere
      Integer arguments have been replaced with enum values for window styles, entity bounds, and load flags. This is nice because the C++ compiler has some error checking so you don't do something like this:
      LoadTexture("grass.dds", WINDOW_FULLSCREEN); Operators have been added to allow combining enum values as bitwise flags.
      A new LOAD_DUMP_INFO LoadFlags value has been added which will print out information about loaded files (I need this to debug the GLTF loader!).
      Early Spring Cleaning
      Almost all the pre-processor macros have been removed from the Visual Studio project, with just a couple ones left. Overall the headers and project structure have been massively cleaned up.
    • By Josh in Josh's Dev Blog 6
      An often-requested feature for terrain building commands in Leadwerks 5 is being implemented. Here is my script to create a terrain. This creates a 256 x 256 terrain with one terrain point every meter, and a maximum height of +/- 50 meters:
      --Create terrain local terrain = CreateTerrain(world,256,256) terrain:SetScale(256,100,256) Here is what it looks like:

      A single material layer is then added to the terrain.
      --Add a material layer local mtl = LoadMaterial("Materials/Dirt/dirt01.mat") local layerID = terrain:AddLayer(mtl) We don't have to do anything else to make the material appear because by default the entire terrain is set to use the first layer, if a material is available there:

      Next we will raise a few terrain points.
      --Modify terrain height for x=-5,5 do for y=-5,5 do h = (1 - (math.sqrt(x*x + y*y)) / 5) * 20 terrain:SetElevation(127 + x, 127 + y, h) end end And then we will update the normals for that whole section, all at once. Notice that we specify a larger grid for the normals update, because the terrain points next to the ones we modified will have their normals affected by the change in height of the neighboring pixel.
      --Update normals of modified and neighboring points terrain:UpdateNormals(127 - 6, 127 - 6, 13, 13) Now we have a small hill.

      Next let's add another layer and apply it to terrain points that are on the side of the hill we just created:
      --Add another layer mtl = LoadMaterial("Materials/Rough-rockface1.json") rockLayerID = terrain:AddLayer(mtl) --Apply layer to sides of hill for x=-5,5 do for y=-5,5 do slope = terrain:GetSlope(127 + x, 127 + y) alpha = math.min(slope / 15, 1.0) terrain:SetMaterial(rockLayerID, 127 + x, 127 + y, alpha) end end We could improve the appearance by giving it a more gradual change in the rock layer alpha, but it's okay for now.

      This gives you an idea of the basic terrain building API in Leadwerks 5, and it will serve as the foundation for more advanced terrain features. This will be included in the next beta.
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