View Full Version : Article in GDM about DarkBasic PRO

09-03-2003, 05:56 PM
Well, I debated on whether I should post this on the game programming board or this board, but I decided on this one because its not necessarily of a programming nature, but rather its an announcement of something I have read and I would like all of your ideas on the subject.

I am a member of the IGDA (International Game Developers Association), and as such I receive a subscribtion to Game Developer magazine. In the last issue I received, there as an article on a new version of DarkBasic being released, called DarkBASIC Professional.

Now I know all of us have, in the past, scoffed at DarkBASIC (including me...I have never even considered touching the program even once). However, as I read this article, I found out some interesting things about this new version of DarkBASIC being released.

I have tried searching for a version of the article on the internet, but however, I cannot find one, however if you are able to, the author is Justin Lloyd and the title is DarkBASIC Professional, and is a product review.

It seems as if this new version of DarkBASIC uses a Windows IDE instead of the old DOS version that it used to be. Lloyd writes, "It handles all of the DirectX 8.1 features, providing ample facilities for 2D - using the DirectX sprite interface - and 3D graphics, plus input and audio."

He then goes on to state, "The 3D side is an even more comprehensive command set for graphics and math, covering vectors, matrices, Catmull-Rom and Hermite splines, plus all the usual trigonometry commands found in other modern BASIC dialects. The 3D graphics handle the usual rendering of polygons, loading 3D objects from disk, adn creating primitives at run time, plus commands to control the individual joints on a boned object and real-time mesh deformation with direct support for a lot of popular model formats, including Quake 2 and 3, Half-Life, DirectX, and 3DS Max."

A couple more paragraphs down: "Object collision detection is handle automatically, and once a collision has taken place, DarkBASIC can either automatically move the colliding objects apart or leave it up to the programmer to determine the exact outcome. The collision command set provides raycasting tests for user-determined collisions and probing."

It then goes on to say how capable it is of rendering indoor and outdoor scenes, supporting multiple input and output formats, including force-feedback for joysticks, and about its extensive audio capabilities including CD audio, MIDI, MP3, and WAV. It also states it has the ability to play AVI, MPEG, and DVD videos, and even map the videos onto textures in real time.

The author ends with this statement: "DarkBASIC is a great tool for developing both complete games and quick mock-ups, yet it has been overlooked by many professional game developers who couldn't imagine that BASIC could be up to the challenge of creating a modern game with sophisticated graphics. The company announced it was about to post a public beta of DarkBASIC 5 on their web site, which will have many improvements, including support for the .FX shader format, and pixel-accurate selection of objects during gameplay."

Thats a quick synonpsis of the article. What are all of yalls thoughts about this? Up to this point I have always looked down upon DarkBASIC, and even after reading this article, I am still hesitant to take a look at it, although the author states that this new version of DarkBASIC Professional is an "ideal scripting language for game designers and game programmers in a rush to try out a new idea."

So anyways....your thoughts?

09-03-2003, 06:23 PM
I didn't read your entire post, but I read the article. It seemed a bit biased in favor of DarkBasic, although it was mentioned that it is a tool for getting programs out the door quickly. It might be good for mocking up a demo, but I won't buy any game that I know to be programmed in it, because I predict that the code isn't as "strong" as it could (read: should) be when programming in DarkBasic.

09-03-2003, 06:27 PM
I once had it on my HDD just to give it a try. I don't know anything about it's speed, but at least it was quite simple to produce "output". No 300 lines of sourcecode just to init OpenGL etc - actually no init at all.

As for BASIC in general, I've started programming with C64 BASIC, AmigaBASIC... QuickBASIC. However I never really liked the fact that BASIC seems to do just too much with one command.
i.e. I remember QBASIC didn't have any command to read a directory into an array or something similar, only a command ("FILES") to read the directoy structure and display it directly on the screen (and ruin my GUI).

However, there is one thing I learned about C programmers when I (Delphi coder) first came to this board: Most of them think that C(++) is the only "real" language out there. Everything else like Delphi and VB is thrown into the same corner, where for example Delphi has a compiler that is - thanks to Delphis superior unit concept - at least 10-20 times faster then MinGW and - if boundary checks are off - a similar or in certain cases even faster runtime speed (just look at C-strings *poor* performance!).

Please don't take this as a personal insult and please give me credit for enlish not being my first language, but I think a lot of the people here wouldn't take any harm if they took of the purple glasses for a moment. If DB interests you, give it a try.

I for one don't like DIM and PRINT, reason enough for me not to use it. :D

Do I need to register with a new nickname now ? :rolleyes: