Archive for July, 2008


I was playing around with homebrew on my Wii the other day, checking out new software on the excellent Homebrew Browser, when I came across something called MAsteroids. It purported to be a multiplayer version of Asteroids, something like what I did with LANeroids, but with local multiplayer and actual asteroids (!), which I thought was pretty cool so I downloaded it right away. It actually was very nice, it supports every control method available on the Wii and I realized it could be very fun. I’m thinking of contacting the developer once I get my feet wet with homebrew development on the Wii and asking if I could join him as a developer or something like that. I’d love to add wifi capabilities to it, although as of yet I don’t know how sockets work in C++, so that will take some learning.

By the way, the idea of multiplayer asteroids wasn’t mine, there was this really old game my friend had a long time ago which was basically multiplayer asteroids, with lots of crazy powerups and stuff. It was one of those Cosmi games, which I later learned were all on the same disc and you just needed the proper word from the manual to install all the games. In fact, a search for multiplayer asteroids turns up quite a few results. Funnily, the flash version was actually made after I made my project for APCS. Unfortunately, I can’t find that original game that was so much fun back then. I remember it had wormholes and several types of powerups or something like that. Bleh.

Text Invaders Plans

So I’ve got a handful of free time this summer, between robotics, getting a driver’s license, and trying to get back in shape, and I’ve decided to start working on a Java port of Text Invaders. Hopefully I’ll be able to finish the game this time. Unfortunately with the original VB6 version it languished for a while, and when I was actually interested in completing it I had learned Java and Visual Basic seemed too primitive. VB6 isn’t even fully object-oriented. For example there are classes and inheritance, but it’s only interface inheritance and not implementation inheritance, so any subclasses have to rewrite inherited methods, which kind of defeats the purpose of inheritance in my opinion. And my code for Text Invaders was so sloppy, and mostly in one file, that I just couldn’t bear to edit it anymore.

Now, I’ve taken the basic drawing code I used for my APCS final project, named LANeroids now, and modified it to use text instead of polygons. By moving to Java I gain a lot of nice things like true object orientation and instant cross-platform capabilities, but sadly I also give up some nice things like DirectX support. I think it might be possible to add DirectX to a Java app, but that would make it cease being cross-platform, so I don’t know if that’s worth it. OpenGL is a nice alternative I guess, but I’d also need to use OpenAL for sound most likely. And I was so proud of my 3D positional effects, too. Once I’ve gotten a definitive Java version done, complete with actual levels with perhaps multiple waves per level, bosses, online high score boards, automatic updates, and such, I’m considering doing a Wii or DS homebrew port. A post-1.0 version might also add in co-op multiplayer. Anyway, this is all speculation right now. Back to coding!