Voxel game project: Rituals of the old

Kudos to you. A very honest and entirely real life of a software developer. Keep going, my friend. :heart:


That being said, don’t neglect your family on your “white whale” project.

The reality of game development is that you could spend a decade making a perfect game and still no one plays it. For the hundreds of games that ‘make it’ every year, there are many many thousands of games that didn’t make and were JUST AS GOOD.

So, if you are ok with spending a decade on a game, missing your kids growing up, etc. just to say, “Yes, I made this thing” at the end with no other benefit… then go for it. Because that is more likely the reality.

Next: there are hundreds of things to learn about actually releasing a game that have nothing to do with developing the game. You undoubtedly will have to do it a few times before getting everything right. Do you want to go through all of those learning tries with your “baby”? Probably not. (Maybe you’ve already released games before?)

I just caution strongly against the sunk cost fallacy that seems to be at play here. They say that sharks have to keep moving forward or they drown… but they get to choose which way they go. They will not pass up a small school of fish here to chase that giant white whale forever and die of starvation.

Put this way: if you cannot even release a small game then you have no idea what awaits you when trying to release a big one. I’m always amazed at the amount of work just to get a simple game “finished”.

…and I speak from a position of chasing my own white whale. Definitely don’t neglect your family. They will be gone before you know it!

Edit: I realized after writing this that you may not be a developer and just “managing” the thing… in which case I guess developing smaller games and getting them out really isn’t an option.


Thanks, Paul.

I won’t. But it’s still eating a lot of my life. I have kind of a strange relationship with that. Sometimes when you’re in the zone everything is absolutely perfect. And then at other times it’s just hard.

I do game design, 3D, music, SFX, graphics, websites, managing, server maintenance, etc. Pretty much anything that is needed.

I don’t really consider myself to be a coder. It’s an area where I’m uncertain about myself. I try to get better at it, and I really love it, but I have high standards and I can’t really say that I live up to those standards when I look at myself objectively. I still have a lot to learn about Java.

I’ve made a few small games by myself, but nothing this big before. It’s an ambitious project.

I also want to say I’m a big admirer of your work. I think what you’re doing is great and admirable. And I know life hasn’t been easy for you. Hang in there, buddy. We root for you.

Inverse Kinematics support is finally working. Still needs to be expanded to other chains, but oh man. It’s so pretty.

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Progress has been slow recently, but we’ve been working on world generation:

And animations and some tree related stuff:


Weltschmerz (our world generator) is now connected with Terra (our voxel engine). This is only a very preliminary version and there’s still a lot of work to do, but most importantly the pipeline is working.

Also now with greedy meshing.

We are still looking for more coders, please help us:


Performance improvements

Hit a bottle neck with memory before FPS.

736 x 736 meters.
10 million triangles.
21.5 million vertices.

Currently eating about 14 GB of memory.

When I opened Chrome web browser (with my ~100 open tabs) everything slowed down to a crawl because I ran out of memory.

It’s not bad, but it’s definitely not good either. I am very happy that we’re fast approach a breaking point where the whole thing becomes minimally viable. It’s been hard three years of work and planning and things are finally coming to fruition. It’s a great feeling.

There’s still a ton of work to do. And we’re also experimenting alternative approaches to greedy meshing, but nothing on that yet.

Now open sourced under MIT license

terra-test-game - Test game for Terra, depends on Terra, Weltschmerz, and JavaMonkeyEngine.

Weltschmerz - Terrain generator for Terra.

Terra - Our voxel engine. Was already open sourced before, but I’m mentioning it here for the sake of being thorough.

Help us out? We need volunteer coders, seriously


Come and chat or hang out


Oh, here’s a better video than the previous one. But this is not quite the latest version. It was recorded before any optimizations:

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Now with more optimizations. We can do chunk creation AND greedy meshing in 50 milliseconds for one 64³ chunk (on a single thread) on ~5 years old hardware. That’s 20 chunks per second.

Also we added preliminary support for terrain loading and unloading.

Birch bark texture is done.

We are still looking for volunteer Java coders to help us: