Sunday, September 27, 2009

Garshasp at DMF

Garshasp and the team will be present at the 3rd Digital Media Festival in Tehran this year.
The development team will present a few workshops during the festival, here is the schedule.

Saturday (11 Mehr, 16:00) - Garshasp Development Process, the development team
Sunday (12 Mehr, 10:00) - Debugging Techniques for Games, Faham Negini
Sunday (12 Mehr, 11:00) - Post Processing on the GPU and Real-time GPU programs, Yaser Zhian
Sunday (12 Mehr, 15:00) - The new features of C++0x, Yaser Zhian
Sunday (12 Mehr, 16:00) - AI using HFSM, Amir H. Fassihi
Sunday (12 Mehr, 17:00) - The process of making a game level, Syros Pourlatifi, Hossein Hosseinian, Faham Negini
Sunday (12 Mehr, 19:00) - The process of creating a Game Characters, Syros Pourlatifi, Mohammad Modaress
Sunday (12 Mehr, 20:00) - Game Character Texturing Techniques, Syros Pourlatifi
Monday (13 Mehr, 10:00) - Serialization in C++ with Boost, Yaser Zhian
Monday (13 Mehr, 11:00) - Physics Engines and Nvidia PhysX, Amir H. Fassihi
Tuesday (14 Mehr, 10:00) - Life as a Technical Artist, Aidin Zolghadr
Tuesday (14 Mehr, 11:00) - Techniques for variety in Game Play Design, Hossein Hosseinian, Hadi Eskandari
Tuesday (14 Mehr, 15:00) - ZBrush Workshop
Tuesday (14 Mehr, 16:00) - The Design of a Board Game Workshop

An initial registration (free) for the workshops can be done here: http:://

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

A world of Magnets and Miracles

Now that is the anniversary, all that can be said is:

"The grass was greener
The light was brighter

With friends surrounded

The night of wonder

The taste was sweeter

The nights of wonder"

Alas we did reach the " ..dizzy heights of that dreamed of world" and are "Dragged by the force of some inner tide".

But I shall keep my "High Hopes", my weary eyes still stray to the horizon .. Forever and Ever ...

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

The good bad thing ...

A strange thing happened this week, something good and bad. With bad which can be good and bad again. Garshasp's work in progress video trailer was placed up on GameTrailers website. Well this is really good because the website is a really important place in world gaming and it has been where we always got our information regarding the new games and just seeing the name of our game in the list over there brings us some joy.

It was bad because the trailer which has been placed on the website is not what we wished to have there. It is very raw and un-professional, a work in progress video which we were able to put together the night we flew to GamesCom in order to have something up on the LCD's at the exhibition.

Game trailers which are going to be showcased as debut trailers usually need a lot more polish.

Now why did this happen? We don't know exactly either since the last thing we asked the guys from GT when we saw them was about the things we needed to do in order to have a trailer over there and they had told us to email it to them. None of our emails regarding the details for the video were replied until we saw that somehow they have downloaded that work in progress trailer and uploaded it over there.

We are still following the issue and trying to replace the video.

On the other side, there has been a lot of exposure for the videos, along with a lot of negative comments from the users. The good thing is that we agree with most of the negative comments and they are things that we have already fixed or have in our minds to polish. Its also very interesting to get some feedback regarding our work from the highest level, the level of comparison with the AAA titles out there, comparison with titles that spend at least 10 million dollars for their development. This experience is valuable for us since the people around us do not ever judge us on that basis and its always a bottom up approach. We clearly did not expect any comparison at this point in time but it just came to us.

The bad thing about this event is that the raw video from Garshasp is probably bad for the Game reputation in the long run, which we should try really hard to make better with the next trailers we make and the polishing we have planned.

A hard slap in the face is good if you can live more "alive", we have to learn from this opportunity to be evaluated directly with the big guys in the ring. Focus and patience can redirect all the negative comments towards our favor. Lets do it team ... we've got lots to do and need to come back better ...

Friday, September 04, 2009

The Fragile Art of Existence

The title was a project Chuck Schuldiner once worked on, but also a description for the current state of what we do. It really depends how fragile is defined but in our case, not being able to reach a few of the not very far goals we have can be considered as the result of shattering and hence fragility to be described around that idea.
We are almost at the end of the Garshasp project and there are quite a few options ahead of us as a team and quite a few options ahead for each and everyone on the team. There is only a very little combination of the above options that can lead us to the good goals we are seeking and this is the reason the situation is so fragile.
We have to decide about the level of quality we want to put in the first title, finding the tradeoff point betweeen quality, time and efforts. We have to think about international releases, in which if we are serious, we would neeed to increase the efforts still more.
We have to find new talent, technical or art related. We would need to test and train these new talents.Finding new talent with good experience is quite hard and so the training part is really serious, which again has got its own risks.
We have to think about the next project or next projects, we have to find a way to secure funding for the next project. The genre and type for the next project is very critical, since we need to be able to focus on a specific genre and our team needs to really become experts in a specific type of games and so the next project commitment we enter is really important.
Our team members need to find the path to enhance their skills, they have to find the balance between time for their personal improvements and time for the project.
We need to redesign our technical engine and enhance it and there are areas which we really need to inject into our code base, such as a threading kernel, advanced animation blending and improved shaders. Knowing how to approach the above and how to balance the time is another major decision.
We have to decide about some partnership offers we've had which again can affect our future a lot.
Up to now, our progress was rather linear and we weren't faced with that many decision points, however, we are in a position right now that we need to select an action almost daily for the next couple of months which only a few can take us where we want to go, the situation is fragile. It is fun to exist in a fragile state, maybe because we feel the existence even more...