[casual_games] Procedural rendering - again

Jonas Beckeman list at jobe.nu
Tue Jan 10 06:39:37 EST 2006

> Most of the art is JPEG
> compressed bitmaps and it ends up being about 35% to 50% of the 
> overall download size.

With that graphics ratio, it's not that interesting a subject I guess. Going
from 15 megs to say 12 wouldn't be worth the trouble.
It could probably be quite different with projects designed from the start
to take advantage of procedural imaging, for things like effects, certain
types of animation, and extra visual variation.
And of course the graphical style has a large impact on how much generated
graphics can be used.

I also wonder what people use for animation compression (i.e. bitmap
sequences). A natural choice I guess would be to use a video codec, and
extract the individual frames to bitmaps at program launch. Can this be done
in the common frameworks (Flash, PopCap, Blitz etc)? Until alpha-enabled
video it hasn't been so attractive, but now I gather it should be one of the
best techniques. Experiences?

> Occasionally we use AGG to do some vector based graphics at run time 
> but this is rare

Doesn't go well with your graphical style, or is the process cumbersome? If
you had an embedded/extended Flash player with individual control over every
control point/shape etc, would you use it more?

Note: My driving force is that I just adore procedural/modular media
generation, be it modular synths, texture generators, advanced particle
systems or procedural 3D modelling. I believe great things can be done with
them, but there needs to be a critical mass of users before it gets really
useful instead of just being interesting.
When there are libraries with thousands of well-categorized "patches" to
browse, use and modify, I think we'll see a boost both in production,
reduced file sizes, and creative freedom.

Currently I have too much else to do myself, so I can't get on it, although
I'd love to. That's why I'm hoping to generate some demand, so that someone
can see a commercial benefit in creating such a generic procedural system
and actually implement it. (Yes, there *is* DirectShow, but that's Windows


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