Archive for April, 2011

Meteora – 3D iOS Game

Monday, April 25th, 2011

For the module Animation Software Development, I recently developed a 3D game for iPhone, iPod touch and iPad. It is fully data-driven and uses Lua and irrlicht. There is also a full report available for download below. It contains the initial design, concept drawings, explanation of algorithms and technologies used.

Meteora Teaser

The game currently features 5 levels, each 45 s long. They all differ in the speed of the airplane and the amount of obstacles (so far mainly trees). I plan on releasing this to the App Store at some point in time. However, I still need to add more level packs and add things like Game Center integration so players can submit highscores.

Meteora Gameplay on iPad Screenshot of gameplay on an iPad.

Download Report (PDF, 9.2 MB)

RenderMan TextMate bundle

Saturday, April 23rd, 2011

Doing my first steps with Pixar’s RenderMan I was installing 3delight on my Mac and started playing around with shaders and rib files. To simplify development I created a little bundle for my text editor of choice, TextMate. 3delight comes with the commands shaderdl and renderdl to compile shaders and render rib files.

Using the bundle, all you have to do is press Cmd+R when editing your rib file. The file automatically gets saved and a window pops up showing the status of the renderdl command. Also, the rendered image is displayed. The bundle also supports a slightly better syntax highlighting (based on the C bundle).

Renderman TextMate Bundle


  1. Download the bundle and double-click on the .tmbundle to install
  2. Set the variable DELIGHT In TextMate’s preferences => Advanced => Shell Variables to the path of your 3delight installation, e.g. /Applications/Graphics/3Delight-9.0.84 (You can find this out by typing echo $DELIGHT into Terminal)

Feel free modify, improve, tweak it to your taste. Feedback welcome! N.B.: Your rendered image has to have the extension .tif and has to be named like the the rib file for the preview to work. If you want to use other formats, you can change it directly within the bundle editor.

Download: TextMate RIB bundle

Gesture Library + Head Tracking prototype on iPad 2 [Update]

Monday, April 18th, 2011

I’ve spent a couple of days porting my gesture library to iOS to do some tests with the iPad 2’s front-facing camera. I also added head tracking with OpenCV for Head-Coupled Perspective (HCP) and a sort of 3D effect. It’s an early prototype for an ongoing project at the NCCA, still a lot to do, but I thought I’d give you a short preview. Stay tuned! The system is implemented in C++ and some Objective-C (for iOS glue code), powered by openFrameworks.

Update: New video showing an updated version with some new functions like the feature in the end that could be used for some sort of AR shooter game.

Update 2: Thanks to Renato Mitra for featuring this video on his site, one of the most popular blogs in Switzerland. Salü Äpflblog-Bsüecher :-)

NCCA Group Projects 2011

Tuesday, April 12th, 2011

The last months have been busy at the NCCA with a lot of projects, most of them will be shown here soon. Let’s start this with the group project that we handed in a month ago.

The game is simple: The world is ending. Can you escape the nightmare?

Thanks to my group members Firuze Kiraz, Elliot Spence, Alex Poolton, Pete Smith and Simon Roth. It was amazing to work on such a great project with such great people. My main contributions were developing the scripting interface and its integration (Lua), event/animation system, lead of Mac platform development and general coding tasks. More videos of this year’s group projects below.


Dice have been rolled, over 6000 times …

Tuesday, April 12th, 2011

After being a busy with studies and, to be honest, a lazy blogger, I want to start catching up and share some projects and new numbers with you. As you know, “Roll it!” has been on Apple’s AppStore  Since the end of 2009. I’m happy to let you know that so far it has made it’s journey to over 6000 iPhones, iPod touches and iPads in more than 30 countries.

Another great thing is that since the introduction of Game Center support, hundreds of players are competing online, every day.

Thanks to everyone for their support. Of course, you can still get it in case you haven’t tried it out already. Have fun and as always – keep on rollin’!

Available on the App Store