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 Cyna Games > News archives
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October 28, 2000
October 28, 2000, 00:00:00
As I expected, a few people seem to have trouble with the latest version. This is because I switched from DirectX 6.1 to DirectX 7.0, which offers better performance and more features like cubic environment mapping.  The first thing to do is to make sure you have DirectX 7.0 installed. Then, check your video card drivers and sound card drivers to make sure they're compatible with this version. If they aren't, then you probably have some very old hardware and I wouldn't even recommend to play the latest versions of Kyodai. If you still have problems, you can download version 14.00 instead. It's up to you. For now, I don't have good reasons to go back to DirectX 6.1. Actually I have even better reasons to switch to DirectX 8.0 as soon as it's correctly supported on the Delphi development platform.  I hope everything turns okay for everybody in the end. I'm rather proud of my latest version, you can customize it as you wish, add more visual effects, and I'll do my best to keep adding more effects and features in the future. Stay tuned... Wink
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October 26, 2000
October 26, 2000, 00:00:00
Yes, I know, I'm getting old... No update for over two weeks... But I never promised I'd update this page every other day, hu. I just don't feel like it these times... But don't worry, the flea invasion is definitely over, everything's fine at home, I was just extremely busy working on Kyodai and other things, and I'd rather spend more free time in my real life than online... Wink  As you can see, Kyodai 15.00 is now out. This is the first version of Kyodai to use DirectX 7.0, so if you have problems with this particular DirectX version, I've kept a copy of Kyodai 14.00 on the main page. Other than that, everything should be okay. Actually I'm even thinking of switching to DirectX 8.0 as soon as possible once it's released. You never know...
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New release: Kyodai Mahjongg 15.00
October 24, 2000, 00:00:00
  • [Language] Updated translations : German, Polish and Greek.
  • [Music] New song from our favorite composer, Miguel Samiez ! Electric Soul, with a fantastic guitar solo at the end, was first featured on the Kyodai Mahjongg Original Soundtrack CD, and is now finally available in Kyodai itself ! Congratulations for another great piece of music, Miguel ! Stay tuned for more songs from him !
  • [Layout] Kyodai reaches his 100th layout. Added 18 layouts from Ernie Polegato (a Zodiac series with 12 signs, and a Chess series with 6 characters), a layout called "Coffee Cup" from an anonymous author, and "One Move" by Vincent Krebs, which originally had no name. The name comes from the fact that it only has one possible move at startup...
  • [Great] Finally implemented the layout editor in 3D ! Now, you aren't thrown anymore to the 2D mode when you try to edit or create a layout... Phew ! Wink
  • [Cool] Switched to DirectX 7.0 (previously I was using DirectX 6.1). In the process, the overall performance seems to have improved automatically (I noticed a jump from 95 fps to 115 fps with all options enabled in the background cube mode). I'll try to see if I can implement hardware T&L in the future. But it probably won't help more.
  • [Cool] Implemented cubic environment mapping. It is a DirectX 7 specific feature available on GeForce and Radeon cards... And it looks good ! Smile
  • [Cool] Implemented emboss bump mapping. It's an effect similar to the G400's environment-mapped bump-mapping (which has been in Kyodai since v11.21), but it works on a lot more video cards. I could have implemented the same effect, but I chose to make it different - now the effect depends on the tileset, which seems to be "carved". Works fine on highly-contrasted (and not too colorful) tilesets.
  • [Cool] Added an optional "specular" special effect. This simply adds a spotlight effect at some light angles. Nice effect, and easy to implement. I should have done this earlier.
  • [Cool] Modified the status bar to make the text fit in all translations, and to put the layout editor bar in there as well (so as to avoid resizing the screen when not needed).
  • [Cool] Now you can switch between games via the menu, without going back to the game selector. Although I still prefer the game selector method... Wink
  • [Cool] Now, the "High resolution Textures" option also improves the background texture resolution (used in the Background cube mode for example), except if you have a Voodoo or Voodoo2 card (where the texture size is limited to 256x256).
  • [Cool/Fix] Fixed a lot of long-lived problems in the layout editor... More exactly, the layout name was incorrectly specified in the menus when you just finished saving a new layout. Also, there were a lot of problems with high scores being erased when using spaces in the layout name. These problems are no more.
  • [Fix] Hopefully fixed all the small problems with the Shuffle feature in two-player games.
  • [Fix] Removed the small lag during Rivers and Slider animations.
  • [Fix] Fixed the zeros appearing in the status bar at startup...
  • [Fix] Fixed a problem that would prevent unregistered users to play online.
  • [Fix] Fixed other problems I forgot about. But there were a few... Wink
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October 9, 2000
October 09, 2000, 00:00:00
Oops, forgot to keep you updated last week... Sorry. About the bump mapping stuff, I've finally settled for the emboss effect, with a slightly optimized routine. There's something like 80 fps on screen now, in 1024x768x16. I think I like the cube mapping better, but the emboss bump-mapping has its advantages, especially on contrasted tilesets and at maximum zoom.  Apart from that, I've been busy as always. I've sent a first beta version to my beta-tester, who found some bugs (which I hopefully managed to fix). I'll definitely be able to release a new version this month, don't worry about that. As for when, err... I still don't know. Could be in two weeks. Could be in two days. You never know... Wink
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September 30, 2000
September 30, 2000, 00:00:00
As Miguel Samiez says he reads this page every day and is asking for some news, here they are... Wink Well, it's been much easier to work with emboss bump-mapping than with dotproduct3 bump-mapping... I've been able to make it actually work in about one day of work. It was fast, also (100 fps). Unfortunately it doesn't look very good when using a 1-pass drawing system, so I've split the emboss effect to a 2-pass alpha-blended system, and now it works as good as my environment-mapped bump-mapping feature (the one for the G400 cards, remember ?), and faster (55 fps). Although I'm still not completely satisfied... Anyway. I'll probably find a workaround soon enough.  So it looks like I'm likely to release a new version within a week or two. Hey Miguel, since you're reading this... How about sending me a new Midi music for Kyodai ? You know I'd love to have this beautiful "Electric Soul" in it someday ? Wink Or maybe some inca music... Hmm... Smile  Apart from that, the flea invasion is back (although weaker than last time, but I'm scared again), I've seen a lot of cool movies this month (hey don't laugh at me, these were my only holidays...), and I'll be looking into more features to add to Kyodai soon... Wink
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September 26, 2000
September 26, 2000, 00:00:00
The mandatory weekly update... Wink Been working for a full week on implementing DotProduct3 Bump Mapping in Kyodai... With absolutely no results so far. Yes, I admit : I'm stuck. Normally it should work (I've checked all my code), but it doesn't... Maybe I'll try Emboss Bump Mapping instead, then. It has at least the advantage of working on most video cards, not only the GeForce cards. We'll see...
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September 18, 2000
September 18, 2000, 00:00:00
It must be the season. After the GeForce 2 MX, I bought a laptop computer today. Actually I'd planned this for years, but I never could afford it. This time I saved enough money for it Smile And since my second PC broke down last week, I was somehow forced to buy a new machine -- so I chose a (relatively cheap) laptop. I'm very happy with it for now. Oh, by the way... I get about 40-50 fps in Kyodai with it. So, never consider that a laptop computer is not suited to play Kyodai in 3D. You just need the right video card in it Wink (in my case, a Trident Cyberblade chip...)  As for the fleas, hopefully they're dead by now Smile I guess using more and more products finally finished them off. Phew. But never say never. I know they may be back in a few weeks. I'll be watching.  Finally, back to Kyodai. I decided that it was time to move on to DirectX 7.0, just a couple of weeks before the official release of DirectX 8.0. I suppose that, by now, everybody has installed it and is happy with it. So Kyodai 14.42 will require DX7 and should offer (at least on GeForce cards) a nice speed improvement -- I don't know why, but now I get a framerate of about 116 instead of 96. Just by switch to the DX7 engine. Cool. Also, I've been working on implementing cubic environment mapping, a feature supported mostly by GeForce cards I think. And I'm pleased to announce that it works, and that it looks much better than Kyodai's current environment mapping feature Smile Strangely, it was easy to implement. But it took days to do, just because the feature is documented nowhere and I had to cope with just a couple of obscure C++ files and the DX7 documentation. But now everything's okay so never mind... Smile
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September 14, 2000
September 14, 2000, 00:00:00
Hmm... Just bought a GeForce 2 MX card today. Installed it, along with the super-fast Detonator3 drivers, launched Kyodai, and compared the results... With my Matrox G400 card I had about 86 frames per second with my favorite options enabled (high-resolution textures, background cube), and with my new card I barely reach 96 frames per second... Which represents an improvement of about 10%. Not much, compared with all the fuss about these GeForce cards... Anyway. It's better than nothing. But I have to admit that I was expecting something better (yes, I know, you can tell me the GeForce 2 GTS is much better, but I don't think it would achieve more than 100 fps on Kyodai). I could start working on using hardware T&L on my game, but I think it would actually lower the framerate (it's a common problem when you don't use a lot of polygons in the scene). If any of you here has a GeForce 2 MX (or GTS) card, could you tell me the framerate you get on Kyodai ? Along with your processor's frequency (mine is a Pentium III 450mhz). Thanks !  Apart from that, my secondary PC broke down after I simply removed its keyboard after a reboot. So I can't test any network code from now on -- and my girlfriend can't go online, which is a shame. Also, we're being invaded by... fleas. Mutant fleas. Never seen anything like that in my life. I spent something like $100 (maybe more) on flea-killing products, but none of them worked -- they actually made things worse. I have over 50 flea pimples on my skin -- can you just imagine that ? I can't even sleep anymore for a straight 6 hours. Well, it's definitely not the best week in my life...
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September 8, 2000
September 08, 2000, 00:00:00
No, you don't need to send me e-mail about my mood, really ! Wink However you could send me e-mail if you have any suggestion on what I should add to Kyodai in the next versions... I don't promise anything, I'm just looking for new ideas. Thanks !
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September 7, 2000
September 07, 2000, 00:00:00
Well, if you're wondering... No I'm not dead, and yes I need a break. Sometimes I just get depressed because I'm like that, and I'm good for nothing. Especially talking about Kyodai. Sorry about this... By the way, the 3D version of the layout editor was finished last week. Just not in the mood to post a new version of Kyodai right now. Please give me a couple of weeks. Maybe I'll have some more good stuff in it. In the meantime I've slightly redesigned the main page's tables.
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