Three Slices of Useful Code

While it’s the big problems in game programming that get all the press, there are plenty of small problems that show up day-to-day. Most of these problems can be solved by an equally small bit of code, it’s just a matter of figuring out what that code should be.

With that in mind, I’d like to share a few bits of utility code that I find invaluable in my daily game making. Continue reading

Benchmark Before You Optimize, Dammit!

Donald Knuth said it best:

We should forget about small efficiencies, say about 97% of the time: premature optimization is the root of all evil.

Every programmer knows this in their head, but getting that through to their heart can be surprisingly difficult. When it comes to applying lessons like the one above, it’s easy to find yourself in the middle of a conflict between doing what you know you should do and doing what you want to do. Continue reading

Game Design Tips

As the cliche goes: game design is more of an art than a science. As such, there are no hard, fast rules that dictate how a game should be designed. There are, however, mountains of guidelines and examples that provide insight into how to make a better game.

In this article, I’d like to present a few of the game design guidelines that I’ve found useful in my work. Again, they aren’t absolute rules but they are a great way to sanity check game designs to make sure you’re heading in the right direction. Continue reading