Dev Blog: Scripting and the In-Game Console

One of the first major components required by many modern games is a scripting engine, an implementation of a simpler programming language used by the game to do most of its less technical but copious logic, e.g. artifical intelligence, definitions of in-game objects, mission objectives.

Such a language has now been implemented in Epiar: the popular, blazingly fast, open source language Lua. Lua scripting will help us fill the gap found in our last release: a lack of missions, upgrade items, intelligent and varied NPCs (non-playable characters). It can also be used to let players expand the game in very broad ways, allowing everything from new upgrade items and missions to entirely new universes and game objectives.

To aid in Epiar's development and to provide a testing ground for players modifying and expanding the game, we've built in a console which can be brought up while playing; a simple text interface similar to your computer's terminal where you can type commands and immediately see the results on the game.

For the C++ developers interested, this can be found in our current Subversion repository at http://epiar.net/repo/epiar. Active it by pressing the back-tick key (`).

Development in 2009

Epiar recently turn 8 years old, a near eternity in the life of open source projects, and we have yet to release our original game vision, represented in version 1.0. Below is a tentative schedule of Epiar milestones for 2009:

  • September: Epiar 0.7.0 (plans)
  • October: Epiar 0.8.0 (plans)
  • November: Epiar 0.9.0 (plans)
  • December: Epiar 1.0.0

Be sure to check epiar.net for updates and development news.