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Graphical and Sound API’s- (Open GL, Direct X)

Graphical and Sound API’s-( Open GL, Direct X)

Open GL

Open GL

 

OpenGL or Open Graphics Library is the most widely adopted 2D and 3D graphics API in the industry, bringing thousands of applications to a wide variety of computer platforms. It is window-system and operating-system independent as well as network-transparent. OpenGL enables developers of software for PC, workstation, and super computing hardware to create high-performance, visually compelling graphics software applications, in markets such as CAD, content creation, energy, entertainment, game development, manufacturing, medical, and virtual reality. OpenGL exposes all the features of the latest graphics hardware.

Direct X

Direct X

Direct X is an application program interface (API) for creating and managing graphic images and multimedia effects in applications such as games or active Web pages that will run in Microsoft’s Windows operating systems.

 

 

 

Graphical and Sound API’s- (Open AL, Java, Sound API)

Sound API- OpenAL, Java, Sound API

OpenAL

OpenAL

Also known as Open Audio Library, this interface software has multiple functions that programmers may use to help to produce high-quality audio output.  Designed to cater for a multi-channel output for 3D sound sources, this platform can because across any platform/ The coding style is similar to that of OpenGL as it uses syntax to function. The basis behind OpenAL is to make it possible to generate audio in 3D space. By doing this it enhances player experience, as mimicking 3D space using audio includes the addition of the Doppler effect by utilizing sound frequencies. This adds a much more immersive experience to video games.

When developer release games that are compatible with the 3D sound developer will have use an API like OpenAL so when the game is being played it produces 3D sound, which is sound output that has multi-channels allowing it to be very high-quality audio. It also gives the developers the control over the pitch, tone, and loudness of audio which gives players a better overall experience with the distance of sound effects to be easily distinguished. OpenAL is also cross-platform so it can be used on several game platforms. The other main sound API used for writing functions for sound output is Java sound API. Java sound API works in a very similar way but is used for Java games on devices like mobile and website games; Java sounds API other functions to developers such as capturing, processing, and playing back audio. It also gives developers access to 8-bit and 16-bit audio data, in mono and stereo, with sample rates from 8 kHz to 48 kHz.

Java

Java

This API is designed to help users write programs, and is a low level API which controls the inputs and outputs of sound, it has an excellent degree of control over audio capability. It is a pretty straight forward API when compared to the others, as it follows the already mentioned conventions.  Java Sound API this is another sound API. The purpose like the purpose of the other API is to help you write programs. Its essential in any game to have a sound API without them the game would be dull and you wouldn’t be able to capture the mood of feel of cut scenes or events you may walk into.  Java sound is low level this affects the controls the input and the output of sounds. It has a really good degree of control over audio capability.

Sound API

Sound API

Pretty much the same as a graphic API, however instead of focusing on visuals, it focuses on audios instead. There are tow main sound API which i will be talking about, and this is OpenAL, and Java Sound API.

Linux & Steam OS

Linux is An open Source OS which has allowed for a variety of different distributions which have different features and functions, below are some of the more Popular Distributions

  • Ubuntu-Debian
    • Ubuntu is an Popular Alternative to windows as it tries to make Linux as accessible as possible while still allowing the more advanced users to use the powerful tools of linux.
  • Mint-Debian
    • Similar To Ubuntu mint also tries to make Linux as accessible as possible by emulating the layout of windows.
  • Arch Linux
    • Arch Linux Is light weight allowing the user to heavily customise the OS and add the features they want, because of this the installation process is rather complex requiring heavy use of the terminal to configure Arch.

Steam OS

Steam OS Logo

In 2013 Steam Released their own Debian Linux Based OS called Steam OS its purpose was to bring PC gaming to the living room and was meant to be used with valve’s Steam machines which were mini PC designed to be used as an living room console.

Steam OS Menu Screen

Steam OS was Not successful mainly due to the limited number of games that have been developed for Linux but also because Steam OS and Steam machines main competitors Xbox and PlayStation provide a wider game selection, cost less and also can be used as media centres

Drivers

Installing the latest driver for your device is usually the best policy because it has all the latest fixes for your device. However, sometimes using an older driver is better because the same driver files are used for different PC models at times, but things don’t always work as expected.

Graphic Drivers:

  • What they are: Graphic Drivers is a software that is used to control the graphics chip-set that is integrated onto the motherboard. Usually you need to download the graphic driver from the same manufacturer as the graphics card that is being used.
  • What they do: Getting Graphic drivers are usually used to solve display issues like, black or gray screens showing instead of the image being displayed or when the screen displays elements slowly.

Sound Drivers:

  • What they are: Sound Drivers are used to sort out audio devices like headphones, microphones and speakers. Usually drivers for audio devices are downloaded as soon as their plugged in using Windows audio drivers.
  • What they do: Sound divers help make those devices work like getting sound out of the devices. It also helps get the best quality out of the device.

References:

https://helpx.adobe.com/creative-suite/kb/update-graphics-driver-windows-7.html

http://www.liutilities.com/how-to/install-a-sound-driver/

Engines

What is a Game Engine:  A game engine is software development Environment which is used developers to build Video Games. Devoloper are able to build games for Mobile devices and Consoles.

a game engine includes :

Rendering engine  for 2D or 3D graphics, a physics engine or collision detection Sound,Scripting,Animation, artificial intelligence, networking, streaming, memory management, threading, localization support, scene graph,video support for cinematic.

Some examples of Game Engines are:

Unity: is a cross-platform game engine developed by Unity Technologies, which is primarily used to develop both three-dimensional and two-dimensional video games and simulations for computers, consoles, and mobile devices.

Games made by Unity Engine: Assasins Creed Identity, Rust, Temple Run and There are many more games which were made by the unity engine.

HTML5:HTML5 is a markup language used for structuring and presenting content on the World Wide Web. It is the fifth and current major version of the HTML standard.

Games made by HTML5 :Cookie Clicker, Angry Birds, 2048 and bejeweled

OpenGL:Open Graphics Library is a cross-language, cross-platform application programming interface for rendering 2D and 3D vector graphics. The API is typically used to interact with a graphics processing unit, to achieve hardware-accelerated rendering

CRYEngine:CryEngine is a game engine designed by the German game developer Crytek. It has been used in all of their titles with the initial version being used in Far Cry, and continues to be updated to support new consoles and hardware for their games

 

 

IOS and Android

 

The main difference between the two OS is the Android is the most open source of the two. This gives the added benefits of more customisation option and easier development for games programmers. This is mostly because it is based on the Linux operating system. IOS is more restricted which is better for security but will also make it harder for games business to get their games on the app store which is the equivalent of the google play store.

Both operating systems stores have to go through a process to get their games on the stores. How apple is more protective about what is on their stores. This means it will have to follow the guidelines and terms of service. There is also a fee for uploading your game. For Apple this is a $99 a year charge buy on Android the is only a $25 charge per game. Each system has its benefits. For IOS this is the fact that users with IPhone are more likely to pay for app and in app purchases. For Android this is the fact that a larger amount of users has them, this means that your app will reach a larger audience.

In terms of development Android has the upper hand. This is because games can be made on almost every engine and can be exported as an APK which is the extension that Android uses for apps. As the user of Android are less restricted then IOS these APKs can be downloaded and ran even if they are not on the play store.

Hardware Dependency

Hardware dependent software is a type of program or programming language which is designed to work on only one type of hardware. For gaming this means that particular games may only work on one device like a console. On most modern day consoles their games are incomparable with each other forcing players to purchase the same game twice if they want it on multiple consoles.

Temp 2

PC gamer do not have to worry about this problem as much because almost all games are available to them and can be ported across all their PC devices, via online game platforms such as steam and Epic Launcher. Games are made to be hardware dependent because game platforms want to entice people to buy their console because of the “exclusive” games, Nintendo are a prime example of this al almost all of their games can only run on their own devices. Recently a very popular game was released on PC and due to its popularity it has subsequently been released on all major platforms, including a mobile version!

Temp5

 

 

 

Platform Dependency

Dependent
Some reason on why games are platform dependent is that want to use exclusives features of the console such as being able to use a touch screen on the controller in the Wii U, it could be that the company has struck a deal that owner of a consoles in which they will only release on their console but they will get funding or it could be that they have specially gone programmed with the consoles spec in mind.  An example of a dependent game would Fire Emblem Awakening which is only for the 3DS which as it use the top screen for map whilst bottom screen is used to show stats of each character at the same time. A tool that is used to make exclusives platforms would be Corona native as it is specially tailored to be for a mobile devices by Apple.

Hardware dependent software is a type of program or programming language which is designed to work on only one type of hardware. For gaming this means that particular games may only work on one device like a console. On most modern day consoles their games are incomparable with each other forcing players to purchase the same game twice if they want it on multiple consoles.

Temp 2

PC gamer do not have to worry about this problem as much because almost all games are available to them and can be ported across all their PC devices, via online game platforms such as steam and Epic Launcher. Games are made to be hardware dependent because game platforms want to entice people to buy their console because of the “exclusive” games, Nintendo are a prime example of this al almost all of their games can only run on their own devices. Recently a very popular game was released on PC and due to its popularity it has subsequently been released on all major platforms, including a mobile version!

Temp5

Independent

An independent game is specifically built on multiple platforms. An example of independent games are PC games would be Call of Duty Black Ops as it able play on Xbox 360, PlayStation 3, Wii, Nintendo DS, OS X and Windows
An advantage of independent games is that it allows gamers across different platforms to play games specifically made for their device. This will make the game more of a success, than compared to games that rely on one platform.
A disadvantage to these type of games is that these games must rely on being played on different platforms, which means there will be more development time and money in order to create the game on multiple platforms.
Another disadvantage would be that each platform has different controller layout. The developers will have keep in mind that each button on the control layout must be universal. E.g. PS4 controller has a touchpad, but an Xbox controller doesn’t support that feature.