donderdag 11 april 2013

Recycle for a better game environment!

Today some news about a new game! Just like Eugene im working on a new project as well!
And I am going to tell you a technique to reduce the memory usage by recycling objects.

In this game we are re-using a lot of objects during the game. Like in every other game but this time we are re-using it at the time we are not using it any more. So when we are following a path, we pass numerous objects. Once we pass them we will recycle it and not destroying it. We set it to the next possible spot. This way we won't need to delete it and create it again.
Just a quick reset of its variables and visuals and then set it again for another use! A very nice way of recycling!
Level unmodified

Well this sounds very promising but we need to cooperate with the artist for this. Normally u want to place all these objects in Max and export it the normal way. But since we are recycling all of those objects we don't want a normal export. The export we want, to save some memory and size, has to be modified.

Their are some things we need to know of that model, name, position, scale and rotation. So its name and transform. This can be done in several ways without actually exporting the models. Write all of its data to a text file or replace the model with a dummy and give it the same properties. There are several other ways but we are going to use the dummies. To do this we are using a max script that will search through the scene and replace all the models with dummies.
Models replaced by dummies

We can then search for the specific dummies and add their transform to a array.
So let's say we want to create different sets of objects we now know the type, position, rotation and scale of that specific object. The next part to make it all work, we need a pool of those object types. For each object type we need an original model so we can clone that and put it in a object pool.
So when we need to create a set of objects we can get it from the pool, get its transform we listed before.

This can sound a bit weird but it's very useful.
This can actually increase your game's performance if you use the same objects over and over again. Instead of destroying them on the end and allocating new ones later we are now recycling them. So stop wasting the garbage collector with the same stuff over and over again!

In game


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