Submitted by , posted on 04 April 2001

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War Worlds is a game I've been working on in my spare time, it's very akin to WarZone 2100, (I came up with idea before I learned about WarZone, though! Honest! I've just re-written it about 4 times since I first started)

It's still at an early stage, but basically what you get when you run it is a rolling demo, the camera moves over the terrain, and there's a whole bunch of units fighting each other.

The terrain is rendered using a technique I read about on Charles Bloom's page, which he calls "splatting". Basically, you take a chunk of terrain, and render it several times, each time you add a different layer of texture to it. My version is slightly different to his, but you can see it gives quite good results, though it's probably a little slow on anything but a GeForce. It just uses vertex lighting, which you can only see in the loading screen on the top-right (a cool effect I made up for the fun of it, it takes a screenshot and blurs it and subtracts a random amount from each pixel).

Also of note, perhaps, is the bottom-left shot. This shows the cliffs that I support in the terrain, you won't see any of these in the demo, because the units just ignore cliffs, and roll right off the edge, but you can have a cliff, which is compiled to just one triangle strip. They're not very good yet, basically all you can do with them is what you see in the screen shot. Later, I'd like to be able to have cliffs that run diagonally through a tile, which is possible, it just needs a bit of coding effort...

The units themselves are just meshes I export from 3DStudio in ASE format (I'm not a very good modeller, as you can see, but they work...). They're not lit, or anything, but that'll be something to add in the future. You might be able to see that there's three different types of turrets that each unit has. The missile launcher (foreground of the top-left picture), the machine gun (background of the top-left picture) and mortars (which you might not be able to see, since it's covered in smoke in the top-left picture).

There is a demo available for download on my website, anh/war-worlds/ I'd encourage you all to download it and tell me how it goes!

Dean Harding.

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