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DarkBASIC Professional Discussion / What to expect at long term?

Years of Service
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Joined: 21st Oct 2015
Location: Lisbon
Posted: 2nd Mar 2019 19:45 Edited at: 2nd Mar 2019 20:38
What are the risks of making a long term commercial game with Dark Basic Pro?
As it lost the official support from TGC, is it risky do a commercial game on it? like in some future version of the Windows it can't run
What are the major risks, what can go wrong? Like windows stop support for 32 bits programs, windows stop run executables and only run some safe apps, stop support for DirectX9, etc..
If something like this happen probably will be some compatible modes or emulators, but can make it look less professional
Dark Star
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Joined: 26th Feb 2004
Location: Yamaguchi, Japan
Posted: 3rd Mar 2019 12:40
That's a really good question actually, the fact is, all us that we're still aiming to create the next top notch, blockbuster title by using Dark Basic Pro has the same issue that you've brought to the table on today... I think there could be that, we still have the chance to create a quality game (others had) but without forget the real limitations of DBP, limits that can be surpassed by using the tools some members had created recently (take ziggurat engine for instance) and so get to know DBP core well enough to be able to create your own libraries both within the DBP basic structure and externally, so that its life can be prolonged to face actual PC components and technical requirements as well. Or maybe I'm being negative about the future.
Be Incidental...
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Joined: 22nd Aug 2008
Posted: 3rd Mar 2019 15:05 Edited at: 3rd Mar 2019 15:07
Everything you mentioned is exactly the risk of making a commercial game with DBP in 2019. Plus the following :
- No updates. You will most likely run into a bug that will stop you from finishing your game. You have choices :
1. Digest the whole DBP source code and make a patch for it yourself
2. Wait 2-3 weeks untill one of the 10 existing users drop by and if you're in luck they will help you (basically you have better chances to win the lottery)
3. Find a workaround...
None of these solutions are working , and are waste of time , trust me on this !
- No crossplatform support. I don't know what your intention is but if you want to make money from your game then AS AN INDIE you most likely have to face the fact that you must go crossplatform.Every small user base counts if you want to have profit (Even linux should be taken into consideration)

-Technical limitations. If you want to expand your game with more next gen graphics then you're pretty much doomed. You can depend on old abandoned libraries or write some shaders yourself but in long run you will run into serious bugs (leaking memory , crashes , bad allocations , unimplemeted functions) where no one can help you (see : Cescano and his commercial games with dbp)

in conclusion. It depends what type of game you have in mind it is possible to write a commercial game also the lack of community and no official technical support may not sound like a big problem at first but can be a serious , serious problem in the long run.
[]Spark Particle engine[/href]
[]Transform gizmo plugin[/href]
Years of Service
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Joined: 21st Oct 2015
Location: Lisbon
Posted: 3rd Mar 2019 16:37
By the way I really like DBpro for it simplicity and hope it last for long I don't wanted to be negative about use it, just wondering if there is something that can occur in the next 5 or 10 years that may cause issues
Years of Service
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Joined: 4th Jan 2013
Posted: 5th Mar 2019 01:59 Edited at: 5th Mar 2019 02:03
Hi Everyone

• Regarding any software engine / tool for game dev.

If you have the knowledge of the tool / language, use it now to leverage your final products.
Combine your tools and knowledge.

Separate as much of your game logic | data as you can from the engine.
Keep it flat so you can use it in more than one engine at a time.
eg text files for a simple example storing level data.

It's a drag to learn a new language if you just started making headway into one and get the game dev bug,
Use that knowledge to make faster tools for all your games.
Extend DBP so that it's a game makers, maker.

Don't expect your first [ xx ] games to get much traffic or leverage unless you get super lucky in a perfect storm of marketing and development.
Use the fastest language to prototype your ideas that you have.
Iteration counts.
If you make a game that takes off. you can always port it later.

If I am reading things correctly, DBP is going open source.
Open Source means more people can look at the structure and either complain or fix it.

PS my join date is wrong. nvm
Years of Service
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Joined: 27th Nov 2003
Location: here
Posted: 6th Mar 2019 12:46
It is so sad, but DBP is dead.
Life is not fair, so deal with it.
Brian Lancaster
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Joined: 20th Dec 2013
Location: Oakland, CA
Posted: 16th Mar 2019 21:13 Edited at: 12th Apr 2019 20:53
Shameless promotion (also DBP tips):

I have a commercial game up on Steam called Brigand: Oaxaca, and I make about $100-$300 per month, depending on holiday sales. It was a solo project and I only worked on the weekends, plus I made a lot of DBP-specific mistakes which I will list below.

Steam Link:

MISTAKE #1: NEVER use matrices for your terrain. I use 2 matrices, one for ground and one for cliffs that you slide down. Matrices cannot be shaded and cannot be tested for collision, so I had to run a bullet object step by step to check for collision AND matrix elevation each step. It's the main reason the game can't run at 60 FPS and I chose not to use shading (hence the ugliness). But by the time I learned this, it was too late to go back. The benefit of the matrices though, is that users can easily edit their own maps/mods/complete stories using the in-game world editor.

MISTAKE #2: Don't use different colored texts. This took me a long time to figure out, and I was playtesting my game at about 15 FPS for way too long. Eliminate text color changes and it went up significantly. I heard that even using the text command is too slow and you should use images only for the HUD, but I have too much text and I'm too lazy to change it. Changing text color in the same frame on some computers will even cause the text to flash or not show up at all.

MISTAKE #3: I was using JPGs as textures for a long time. This caused loading times between levels to take up to 3 minutes. Changed it to PNG or DDS, it's always less than 30 seconds. Not a DBP-specific problem, but I wish I had known that from the beginning. I would have saved a lot of time waiting for levels to load.

MISTAKE #4: Don't use Do Loops. I just figured this one out a couple weeks ago and released another patch. My main game loop was a Do Loop, I found a post here that advised me to change it to a For Loop in which I kept resetting the variable at the end. I squeezed another 2-3 FPS from that change. Clearly a problem with the DBP source code.

Part of the reason development took so long is that I wanted to make a world editor and a text file scripting language to make the game completely and easily modable like NWN1. Right now I'm working on a DLC called Brigand: Panama, and I'm desperately trying to get users to make their own mods.

And alas, the only real problem I have with DBP is that it's not cross-platform. I did, however, get my game working on Linux WINE thanks to a user guide on Steam. You can check the Guides section on the Steam page. I would love to know if it also worked for Mac WINE, but I don't have a Mac to test it.

(EDIT) MISTAKE #5: You cannot minimize in Exclusive Mode. That took me way too long to figure out also, wasted lots of time. Now have the option in the launcher app.

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