Olvand is a little multiplayer sandbox RPG, where the players live in self-built towns and can go on all kinds of adventures together. Imagine living with your friends in a small town in the mountains, or creating a new group of friends in a pub in the metropole you all live in. There will be several minigames the inhabitants of a server can play together, among which will be combat based games like King of the Hill or Capture the Flag. You will be able to play against other people in your city, or as a city against another city, or as a whole server against another server. The combat works with self-built guns, in which all kinds of powers can be combined to create unique effects. You can sign up to be a tester on olvand.com.

Some pictures of what I want to add in the future:

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Building a little town together A fishing contest Mining for materials
Blog RSS Feed Report abuse Latest News: Practical challenges with the cave generator

1 comment by Woseseltops on Jul 26th, 2014

Hi all, last week I told you about how the cave generator worked. Unfortunately, I've discovered that building a cave generator algorithm is one thing, but going from the blueprint to an actual cave you can walk around in is another. That is, I walked into several practical problems before I got it to work (and I still haven't got it working fully as I want it). These are the problems, and how I'm trying to solve them right now:

It's quite a lot of info to send
If you had a look at [the visual representations] of the generated caves last time, you might have noticed that it's quite a lot of information to send. Not that it's impossible to send all those x's, dots and pipe symbols, it's just that it did cause much longer loading times than I'd hoped for.

While grumbling about this, I realized that it's not only a lot of info, it's also a lot of redundant info. That is because each cave exists of 10x10 blocks, and each block has four possible exits (north, east, south and west), all of which might be open or closed, which gives us 2*2*2*2=16 possible blocks...

...so instead of describing the whole layout of the block, I now translate it to a number server side (0-15). The client consequently translated it back to the real block. This reduces a cave [like this] to a list of numbers like this:


Much better, huh?

It's quite a lot of stuff to render on screen

But there's another problem as well: these caves are huge. I have of course chosen this size myself (small caves won't be that exciting, as you can't get lost and stuff), but I didn't realize that so much game objects would have to be realized to actually display them. There are 100 blocks in one cave, and in one block fit 1557 rock objects... which leaves us with 155700 objects for the game to handle! Some quick tests show that, even with some smart optimizations to make sure the game only considers objects that are closeby (like I do in the main world), this is simply too much.

There is one big benefit to rocks, though: unlike the softstone underground, or the trees in the main world, the players can't take them away. They don't move! That means I can take one 'snapshot' (=OpenGL DisplayList, for those interested) of them as the cave loads, and then use that all the time, instead of the individual pictures of the rocks!

This gave me a speed-up of about 20-30 times (yay!) but it had one problem: while the rocks couldn't move, the player could: sometimes the player is behind rocks, sometimes he is in front of them, but if all rocks are combined into one image, rocks will be always either behind or in front. I fixed this by splitting my snapshot in two: one of the forward facing rocks, which will always be behind the player, and one of the backward facing rockes, which will always be in front of the player:

And that seems to work! I'm still not fully happy with the framerate, though, so let's stop talking and get back doing!

If you want more development, see [twitter] or [facebook]. If you want to be a tester, you can subscribe on [olvand.com].

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Post comment Comments  (40 - 50 of 390)
Brian253 Aug 30 2013, 7:23pm says:

Hi there! I'm playing Olvand in my netbook (I just downloaded it :D), and the window, o well, I'll just show it you:



Is there some way I can fix it, or put it on fullscreen? Or maybe it doesn't affect the gameplay?

P.D.: I really like what you did here! I was looking for a game like this!

P.P.D.: I'm sorry if my english is messed up, It's not my native languaje...

+3 votes     reply to comment
Brian253 Aug 30 2013, 8:59pm replied:

...and yes, I've tried pushing Alt+Enter (several chances, just to ensure xD) and I still can't put it on fullscreen, it just opens the chat tab.

+3 votes     reply to comment
Woseseltops Aug 31 2013, 2:37am replied:

Mmm, yeah, you want something like full screen for now, which is indeed alt+enter. If alt+enter opened the chat tab, my guess didn't push them at the same time. Could that be it? If not, please open a topic at the forums Indiedb.com I'll help you there. I want to reserve this place for more general questions and comments :).

Thanks! And your English is perfectly fine.

+3 votes     reply to comment
kaytavo Aug 30 2013, 11:46pm replied:

restart the client then try alt tab again
some times alt tab doesn't work
best time to try is when you first open it
you can also try increasing the screens display resolution

+3 votes     reply to comment
Brian253 Aug 31 2013, 2:47am replied:

Nope. It just refuses to get in fullscreen. I can't increase the actual resolution, since it's already at it's max (1024*600). I know there's ways to force it to highter resolutions, but I hear that doing so could break my monitor...
Maybe I should just leave it as is, since the actual resolution doesn't seem to affect the gameplay. Thanks for replying anyways!

+2 votes     reply to comment
kaytavo Aug 26 2013, 4:22am says:

here is a gun layout i call the "Medic's Double Barrel"


+3 votes     reply to comment
Woseseltops Aug 26 2013, 4:47am replied:

I wish I could hit the + button more. I know (from experience :P) this gun is incredibly powerful. If somebody ever creates a wiki this build deserves its own page.

+3 votes     reply to comment
kaytavo Aug 25 2013, 7:26am says:

Notice to those who play on the wessel1 server if you want to start a town head north. i left a unclaimed town hall and some stuff to start you out.

+3 votes     reply to comment
Woseseltops Aug 25 2013, 1:17pm replied:

Indeed not yet implemented, but they're high on my list now you can build things which need a lot of material. Not sure if they'll make the next update, though (but thanks for the reminder :) ).

+3 votes     reply to comment
kaytavo Aug 25 2013, 1:24pm replied:

no problem thanks for the awesome game ;)

+3 votes     reply to comment
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Released Aug 18, 2012
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Highest Rated (5 agree) 10/10

Looks really interesting and really needs a good playerbase!

Oct 8 2012, 8:30am by fastfire10

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