Hey everyone. Today I made some improvements on the graphical side, mainly because I received some mixed feedback about the current graphics. Doesn't look too pretty right now. For that reason and because a lot of classes for the game handling are not finished yet (and only 1 day left till chrismas) I think its much better to give this project 1 week more. Maybe this time will be enough to finally implement shaders and shadows for all objects. Especially shadows will add so much to the game, it is pretty much impossible to tell how height an object is when looking straight down. Shadows would not only make the scene more realistic but would also improve the gameplay (you would see what your unit can and can't see).
As you can see on the screen I completed the roads stuff and added some new objects. Also as planed yesterday the moving around and mouse aiming does work now, but I'm screwed again with those X files, there are totally messed up (rotation wrong, each object is rotated differently, meshes do not fit on top of each other, the upper part of the tank does not have the same pivot point, really annoying), grr, but I don't have the time to write an own 3d-model format (or import any format into the engine, 3ds would suck at a similar level).
I also started the game message classes and most classes needed for gameplay are existing now, but most of the functionallity is missing. I will try a new approach this time to write that code: Unit Testing. Many smaller methods of the internal engine are already checked, but I never done large Unit Tests for a whole game. The tests should be able to run the whole game (creating units, moving around, blowing stuff up, doing graphic effects, winning, losing, etc.). I will report back how that works. Later today (when I slept a couple of hours ^^) I will start that stuff with my intern Fabian :-)
So the new date for the first Demo version of Lost Squadron is 2004-12-31. It might be playable tomorrow already a bit, but I don't think it is wise to release it so early. The first experience should be very nice and for a quick look you got the screenshots here ^^
Here is a fun link about Programming Languages and why some of them failed and others not:
Some new models, but still a lot of problems with x files (man they suck, I can't imagine anyone is actually using them for anything except test projects). Note: Don't expect that this screenshots will fully represent the final game, everything can change (just check the screenshots of the first days, there have nothing to do with the current state).