Saturday, 5 January 2013

BattleShots Drinking Game

Been quiet recently and as such I usually pick up a project or two I am interested in. So here comes BattleShips Drinking Game for the Android Market. The game concept is around a physical drinking game we have played on occasion so what could be better than sharing this with other people and developing and Android App in the process.

I have worked on the Android platform previously so it was nice to work on a game which some great visuals and interaction. I designed and developed the user interface, user experience, sprites and assets used in the game and got to grips with OpenGL ES 2.0 framework for hardware rendering on the Android. Although the game is two-dimensional it was nice to see the full 3D architecture of OpenGL and how I could use this in future projects.

The game makes use of several custom shaders for rendering performance and some real nice visuals. Font's appeared to be the big issue on the Android so I went down the route of implementing a Bitmap Fonts helper library with a Glyph mapping so that spacing could be managed between characters. Overall I think my implementation works really nicely and the text stands out as a key part of the Game. To see just how I implemented Bitmap Fonts in OpenGL ES 2.0 take a look at the source at BattleShots Bitmap Fonts Source the source is well documented so it should be easy to traverse. The bitmapfonts.xml file can be found there too.

Another key element of the design was that I wanted to make the game performance a crucial factor. I felt this would be handy in future projects so BattleShots is quite heavily optimized (perhaps overly so). This is discussed in more detail in a separate article I wrote on BattleShots Game Architecture please go take a look.

Finally came the marketing side, so I quickly put together a site which advertises BattleShots Drinking Game, I think it does a good job of conveying the BattleShots message.

Working with the Android framework has been a nice change again as well as following test driven development practices throughout the development of the game, this really made it easy to quickly get iterative builds up and running for users to see.

Be sure to go download the App and play with a few mates!

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