Submitted by , posted on 17 November 2003
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The two images are screenshots taken from our latest product Letter Rack 3D. Our
sales slogan for our product is 'Too good for words'. And that has been the
focus throughout the two year development cycle of this product. Everything
contained in Letter Rack 3D had to not only look real but had to function in a
3D world too.
So the dictionary and notebook work – the dictionary acts as a 'real' book with
turning pages and includes a total of 8 lexicons that span over 10,000 pages in
the book. The notebook is more akin to a program menu system and most of the
operational settings and controls are contained in it together with the player
score and associated word lists.
The program was written in Delphi and OpenGL. At the heart of the program is a
lexical analysis engine that embodies a host of heuristic algorithms to
ultimately produce a very 'human' style of play. Unlike other games of this
genre, Letter Rack 3D plays strategically and is not reliant on enormous
lexicons to give it the advantage. The lexical engine took some 6 months to
design and implement and it had been planned that this would interface with a
third party 3D engine.
In the end, an OpenGL 3D engine was written 'in-house'. A minimal basic set of
OpenGL functions have been used to avoid possible video card dependencies and
the next phase of the product's development will be to explore many of the
extensions that will enable us to get even more realism through pixel shading
and shadow projections.
Letter Rack 3D is available for download at www.softspotsoftware.com/LetterRack3D.