Must draw appropriate background...
My first graphic game, Flight was a concept-proof program.
During a Systems Programming course, Dr. Drummond's T.A.
suggested a practical exercise: implementing a multi-user,
distributed space-combat game. Each (human) player should use a
different workstation and pilot a simulated spaceship in 3D
space. Students should write the networking stuff while one of
us would code the graphics front-end. Since I feared our
workstations would not run fast enough for steady animation I
first wrote simple 3D routines in Xlib and a test flight
"simulation". Unfortunately the exercise was never actually
proposed and the code was scraped. I don't even have
TeamSim was developed as a concept proof, presenting features
of the OMNI system and the Astra user interface library,
both developed at A-HAND Labs.
The OMNI system extends UNIX system calls allowing processes
to access remote resources and start processes across a
network. TeamSim can use OMNI services to create instances in
different workstations so players interact in the same
virtual environment. OMNI preceded the
Astra is a library for C and C++ programs creating user
interfaces in both graphical and plain text environments with
the same source code. It was also used in Undelete for
Using OMNI, all running instances of a TeamSim session run
symmetrically, each one broadcasting player information to
every other. OMNI support means less than 300 lines of TeamSim
code are devoted to communication. Players could pilot
different crafts like jets and helicopters (really simplistic
flight models) and a tank.
TeamSim was awarded 2nd prize in VII Brazilian Symposium on
Software Engineering's software contest, 1995.
TeamSim's 3D graphic routines supported only polygonal
objects, with no lighting and almost no mapped textures.
Collision detection was just hinted (buildings intercepted
bullet paths, but not a tank's advance). Despite these
simplifications, the program truly achieved its goal to show
off OMNI abilities. After that, work started in Netspace, a space-combat game.
Copyright © 1996, 1997 Carlos A. Furuti