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Author Topic: Why WME?  (Read 22280 times)

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Brassfire

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Why WME?
« on: February 12, 2003, 06:46:37 AM »

How does WME compare to other engines such as AGS? Why do I want to use this one? Is it easy for non-programmers to pick up?

Thanks.
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Mnemonic

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Re:Why WME?
« Reply #1 on: February 12, 2003, 11:29:06 AM »

I'm not convincing anyone to use WME, there are many engines out there to choose from and all of them are great (and all of them have their pros and cons...). Some people like WME the best, because it offers them a good ballance between ease of game development and flexibility for non-standard operations. Some people like the speed, provided by the 3D acceleration, etc.
But the final choice is yours. If you are serious about an engine choice, you should download them all and test them for a while, because *you* are the one who's gonna use the engine, it must suit *your* needs, and people's needs are very individual.

And to your last question, no, I don't think WME is a good choice for a total non-programmer. Although you are provided with prefabricated scripts and basic operations can be achieved by a few simple commands, you'll probably realize you need to do some complex actions in your game and those will definitely require you to do a good deal of scripting (unless you are going to make a very simple game...).

Well, it would be nice if people who are actually using WME write here their opinions. What they like, what they don't like, what is their experience compared to other development systems... You can hardly expect me to be truly objective on this matter :)
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Brassfire

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Re:Why WME?
« Reply #2 on: February 12, 2003, 05:16:10 PM »

Hiya.

Thanks for the quick answer.

More flexibility than AGS would be really nice for the features I have planned. I may be able to find a scripter or two, so the "newbie-friendly" stuff isn't as much of a problem as I thought it would be.

I would love to see some people post their own pros and cons regarding wintermute and other engines. (Or if someone would like to write an article about it here, that would be awesome!)
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JustLuke

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Re:Why WME?
« Reply #3 on: February 12, 2003, 07:10:27 PM »

I think that if you are planning to use a high resolution (640x480+) then it makes sense to use WME instead of AGS. AGS is notoriously slow at higher resolutions and doesn't support anything higher than 800x600.

Also, AGS only supports 16 bit colour at the moment. Personally, I think that since you spend so much time staring at more or less static backgrounds in a 2d adventure game it is very important that those backgrounds look as good as they possibly can. 32 bit colour *does* look significantly better than 16 bit colour, despite what some people might say.

One thing that AGS has going for it is it's maturity. It's been around for quite a while now, and it is a proven engine (just look at Tierra's games). WME, while very promising, is still in an early stage of development. Who knows what nasty bugs might be hidden beneath the surface? Absolutely no offence intended to the creator/s of WME, of course - WME is quite an achievment.
« Last Edit: February 12, 2003, 07:52:57 PM by JustLuke »
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Uhfgood

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Re:Why WME?
« Reply #4 on: February 12, 2003, 08:30:22 PM »

Plus AGS is slower on older systems (and i'm talking like pII 400 mhz 4 meg video), i've yet to test wme on that (with non-acceled mode).  I think that's one of WME's strong points, if you don't have 3d hardware you can go with the non-acceled mode.

Plus there's AGAST, which seems to be really good, but I personally have some issues with it, which is why i'm not using it.  First thing is the author of the scripting language for AGAST is very arrogant (these kinds of people turn me off to anything).  But the main reason i'm not using it, is that it requires fmod to be registered if I plan to sell it and/or use sound and music.  Plus I beleive it's all software and it's only 640x480x32bit (well i think it defaults to 16 bit if the user doesn't have 32bit).  It's also probably the most complicated in terms of it's scripting language, and there's absolutely no editors for it (other then setting up a text editor to write thep rograms with).

And now we come to SLUDGE.  It too is a script only system (although they have a few editors in the dev kit).  The problem it has is that it uses fmod but then the guy didn't register it or get a resale license.  He's got it set up so that the "engine" is free which means technically fmod should be free.  But then he still sells the dev kit.  I talked to the guy at fmod and he said that if you wanted to sell a game with
SLUDGE you would still have to register fmod, so with that legal gray area I decided i'd probably not use it.

So there's my 2c.  Oh yeah AGAST required you pay them a little bit from each commercial product you sell.  I don't have much problem paying for stuff, but i wasn't about to pay for an external sound library for an adventure system because it's not a real development enviroment.  I'd rather pay the creator of an engine some money, then have to pay for some external stuff as well.  Also fmod is not in my price range, it's like 250 for shareware games, and i don't really have that.

If WME turns out that i have to pay too much then i'll probably just prototype my game in it and figure out how to build my own system.  (and yes i'm planning on selling my game(s))

Keith aka Uhfgood
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Scarpia

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Re:Why WME?
« Reply #5 on: February 20, 2003, 08:51:47 PM »


The scripting language in AGS is a very cute and simple one, so I guess that's a plus. However, Chris Jones who is the maker of AGS, has cut a few corners when it comes to usability: there is no "new room"-feature, and you can quite easily overwrite your rooms by mistake. When creating a "blank" game in AGS, the engine by default adds a bundle of default sprites (horrible ones, too), as well as a default character, etc., all of which can't be deleted. The reason is so newbies don't accidentally mess up their game beyond repair, but to me, it is merely a source of frustration. Still, if you can live with those little quirks, AGS is an easy tool for creating point-and-click adventures.

If you want to create point-and-click adventures with the retro look and feel of Monkey Island I & II, or text parser based systems like Leisure Suit Larry I, AGS already has the corresponding GUI's. There is something to be said for that.

And, yes, it is both stable and robust.


With that said, I still like WME better after only seeing 5 minutes worth of it, and I'm a HUGE Monkey Island fan. But that WME interface is just SOOO beautiful! Great Job Mnemonic!


But I guess the real question is: Once the first real (ie. big) games using WME come out, how smoothly will they run, and how flexible is the dialogue scripting when a game designer wants to create huge chunks of dialogue quickly?

The important issues to me are: Flexibility, speed, reliability, and how well the engine will suit my game design process from a usability point of view.


Scarpia

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Brassfire

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Re:Why WME?
« Reply #6 on: February 21, 2003, 08:45:34 PM »

Thanks for the input. Flexibility is definitely important, some of what I have planned would be next-to-impossible in AGS but much easier to implement in WME. I also like the way WME handles the walk areas. AGS is really frustrating in that regard.

I've gotten a few programmer friends to play with it and give me their impressions as well, and they are impressed.

So, I will probably be using either Wintermute or Delerium for my game, and will be concentrating my testing on those two once I have some content to test with. ;)

Thanks again!
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Scarpia

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Re:Why WME?
« Reply #7 on: February 22, 2003, 04:21:51 PM »

Now I've heard of this "Delerium" engine several times recently, and I still don't know what it is. I've looked over about a hundred (!!!) different engines, but I haven't seen that one, or even heard of it. Now where can I find information about it? I heard it wasn't finished yet, so how come everyone knows about it????


Scarpia
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Mnemonic

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Re:Why WME?
« Reply #8 on: February 22, 2003, 09:34:11 PM »

Same here.
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Brassfire

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Re:Why WME?
« Reply #9 on: February 23, 2003, 09:17:54 PM »

Er... I was spelling it wrong... :-[ :-[ :-[

It's Delirium... and since it's coded by a friend of mine from the Hero6 project, that's how I know about it. ;)

It is more of a collection of engine tools than a complete engine though.

http://nekros.freeshell.org/delirium

The site hasn't been updated in a while because of exams and other wonderful stuff.
« Last Edit: February 23, 2003, 09:19:00 PM by Brassfire »
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Mnemonic

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Re:Why WME?
« Reply #10 on: February 24, 2003, 04:07:11 PM »

Thanks, it looks nice (some of the basic concepts really are quite similar to WME).
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scotch

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Re:Why WME?
« Reply #11 on: March 03, 2003, 10:40:35 AM »

WME looks really cool, I just don't really like painting at high res so I'd rather just stick to AGS for 2d games, but I was wondering if since a lot of the engine seems to be using 3d will I ever be able to use 3d characters like in the Grim fandango engine?  That's something I'd definately do..
This is probably answered somewhere else but I can't find it.
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Mnemonic

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Re:Why WME?
« Reply #12 on: March 03, 2003, 03:40:06 PM »

WME looks really cool, I just don't really like painting at high res so I'd rather just stick to AGS for 2d games,
I thought the artists were preferring hi-res :) Anyway, WME supports lower resolutions too ;)


but I was wondering if since a lot of the engine seems to be using 3d will I ever be able to use 3d characters like in the Grim fandango engine?  That's something I'd definately do..
Well I did some experiments with 3D characters about a year ago (there was even some technology demo somewhere on the net) and it acually looked pretty cool. But there didn't seem to be much demand for this functionality so I didn't expand it any further and concentrated on other features instead. But the 3D chars code is still in there, even in the current build of WME. Maybe one day I will ressurect it :)


Edit: I found the old demo. If you are curious, you can download it here: http://www.dead-code.org/download/3ddemo.zip
« Last Edit: March 03, 2003, 04:11:50 PM by Mnemonic »
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Scarpia

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Re:Why WME?
« Reply #13 on: March 03, 2003, 06:31:38 PM »

Hi..

WME looks really cool, I just don't really like painting at high res so I'd rather just stick to AGS for 2d games..

Are you serious? Low-res is so hard!! I tried drawing some supposedly simple Yahtzee-style backgrounds, and failed miserably - it's amazing how the people in the good ol' days managed to pull it off. High-res is much easier, you can do some easy stuff with 3D renderers and create shadowy effects using blurs and gradients and.... all that nice stuff :D but with low-res -- that's for specialists, if you ask me..  :P


Scarpia

PS. Oh, and if you don't know who Yahtzee is, shame on you!

« Last Edit: March 03, 2003, 06:32:40 PM by Scarpia »
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Uhfgood

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Re:Why WME?
« Reply #14 on: March 03, 2003, 06:52:36 PM »

low-res is easier, not only do you have less screen area to work with, you also can get away with alot more and be less detailed for it to look decent.

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