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November 18, 2018
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Joost van Dongen's Blog   Expert Blogs


Joost van Dongen is lead programmer and co-founder at Ronimo Games, the Dutch indie studio behind the 2D MOBA Awesomenauts and the side-scrolling strategy games Swords & Soldiers 1 and 2. When still a student Joost was part of the team that made the original version of De Blob. In his spare time Joost created the abstract racing game Proun and the live music performance game Cello Fortress. He also composes music and plays cello. Joost has been writing blogposts at his official dev blog for years.


Expert Blogs

Posted by Joost van Dongen on Tue, 25 Sep 2018 11:35:00 EDT in Programming, Art
Modelling interiors behind every window in a city often takes too much performance, so some games use "interior mapping", a shader trick to render geometry that isn't actually there, but still achieves sharp, perspectively correct rooms.

Posted by Joost van Dongen on Tue, 18 Sep 2018 10:21:00 EDT in Programming
Matchmaking is a big topic with lots of challenges, but at its core is a simple question: who should play with whom? With so many different aspects to take into account (like ping, skill, premades and region) the answer turns out to be rather complex.

Posted by Joost van Dongen on Tue, 04 Sep 2018 10:17:00 EDT in Design, Indie
Finding playtesters who'll play your game weekly online is really difficult. But should you? This post discusses why you should not let the same people test all the time and how to find enough playtesters.

Posted by Joost van Dongen on Thu, 30 Aug 2018 10:38:00 EDT in Audio, Programming
I'm working on a procedural music generator that composes music and plays it using digital instruments. It's already producing pretty interesting results in the early stages so in this post I share the basic ideas and discuss my approach to coding it.

Posted by Joost van Dongen on Mon, 29 Jan 2018 05:07:00 EST in Indie, Design, Programming
If high quality matchmaking is important, waiting times to find suitable opponents are often unavoidable. This post discusses the problems we had inAwesomenautswith our initial approach to this and how we made waiting a bit less boring later on.

Posted by Joost van Dongen on Tue, 09 Jan 2018 09:58:00 EST in Programming, Console/PC
Generic matchmaking systems on Steam/Playstation/Xbox make development easier, but limit how much control you have over matchmaking. This post discusses several approaches we tried in Awesomenauts and why we ultimately developed our own from scratch.

Joost van Dongen's Comments

Comment In: [Blog - 09/25/2018 - 11:35]

The room changing is actually ...

The room changing is actually a problem that doesn 't happen in my version of interior mapping, as is described in the post. In my version the rooms are in object space or in world space, if you want and then it 's the same room from every angle. I ...

Comment In: [Blog - 09/18/2018 - 10:21]

That 's very true: players ...

That 's very true: players often overestimate themselves and they often use matchmaking and balance as scapegoats. I 've even had a case where a teammate was flaming me all match for being a n00b, while that player was dying all the time and was by far the worst player ...

Comment In: [Blog - 08/30/2018 - 10:38]

Thanks : r n r ...

Thanks : r n r nBeing able to set the mood and intensity of the music would definitely make it much more useful for all kinds of purposes. Right now the program doesn 't contain anything like that: it just produces music without any idea of the feel of that ...

Comment In: [Blog - 01/29/2018 - 05:07]

I only played Splatoon for ...

I only played Splatoon for a couple of minutes at an event so I wasn 't aware of that. Sounds interesting, I 'll have a look. Thanks for mentioning it :

Comment In: [Blog - 01/09/2018 - 09:58]

Yeah, matchmaking is a really ...

Yeah, matchmaking is a really big and complex topic, both technically and from a design perspective. I think a lot of people overlook how complex the implications of subtle things can be and how difficult it is to guess user behaviour before a game launches. Everything you do is a ...

Comment In: [Blog - 10/31/2017 - 10:25]

Good thing I removed a ...

Good thing I removed a useless paragraph at the last moment then Made it an exact fit