Tuesday, July 8, 2008

About Thoppigala 3D Computer Game

Thoppigala is a computer game developed by Vectronics and according to my observations it is developed using Game Creators FPS Creator. I have demonstration version of Thoppigala game and it is totally based on FPS Creator models and FPSC Model Pack 5. The vendor (Vectronics) do model’s texturing part only. Demonstration mission available in this release (file version is based on the FPSC sample mission and it’s level designing is in very poor stages.

In this game, player use Tommy Gun (Thompson Submachine Gun) for it’s operations, but the problem is according to my knowledge Sri Lanka Army may never use Tommy guns for there operations and it is widely used in World War II and currently it is not in use. FPSC model pack 5 contains good weapon collection and I don’t know why designers may not use them for these missions.

This game have lot of other problems, most notable problems are,

Enemy AI : During the attacks, and all the others just choose some random direction to run in, and doesn't stop at walls. This may be able to fix using script modification.

All the enemy entities are act in very artificial way. This is a main problem in FPSC, but it is possible to fix this using source code supplied by game creators.

Game may not work with some video drivers. (for example in nVidia FX5200 – version

Game voices are not very attractive and in poor quality.

Some of the debugging features may not disabled by the Vectronics, such as "Tab" key.

Game Creators release lots of model packs for this tool, (and lots of free models and scripts are available in web too) using these resources they may be able to shape up there product.

This game "Thoppigala" is become more attractive if developer choose a correct engine like "Reality Factory", "Jet3D" (this is also a non/less-programmable game engine) FPSC is good for guys who don’t know programming or 3D modeling. This is a commercial game, so developer need to think about its game engine again. Most people may not use FPSC for there games because of it’s poor quality (for more information check DevMasters – FPSC Page)

In this game author try to do something new (and I’m personally appreciate his/her vision in this game), but (s)he use wrong tools and technologies to implement this game.

Sunday, July 6, 2008

Simple Variable Zener Diode

There are several variable zener diodes available in IC market, but in Sri Lanka it is difficult to obtain variable zener diodes. (For example LM431) So I build this circuit to get the functionality of Variable Zener diode. This circuit is based on two transistors and for Q1 you can use any general purpose NPN transistor and for Q2 use any general purpose PNP transistor.

Using this circuit it is possible to get 3V to 25V (400mW) output. I use this circuit for one of my SMPS project (as a replacement for LM431) and it produces an excellent results.