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My name is Philip McGarvey, and I like making software for people to use. Below are some of the things I've done.
Civil War Online Campaign2010-2013

To make Scourge of War - Gettysburg more fun and easier to play online.

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I'd been playing Scourge of War occasionally since it was released in April 2010. I really wanted to make it easier to get balanced, interesting multiplayer battles started, as this was very difficult to do. I also wanted the results of one battle affect the next, so players could grow attached to their troops. Having an obsession with American Civil War military history and organization, this project was very interesting.

I put together a simple but working system within a week and we started using it. Like all of my projects here, I used my automatic updater so that I could work on it and make releases frequently. I would test the part I had just done, and if it worked I'd click "Deploy" and the changes were in effect for the next game. This meant I didn't need to hold off on releasing anything, so we could use it the whole time it was in development.

The software is two parts. The web application, www.sowmp.com, is written in C#. This keeps track of battles, players and their troops, letting the players customize their forces. The desktop app, also in C#, connects this server to the game itself, passing maps and scenarios generated on the server into the game, and returning the results of the game so they affect future battles.

Org: Exploring and SettlingSpring 2011

A fun multiplayer game, you're in a new land and have to grab up its resources before the other players do.

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I wanted to make a game with real time multiplayer, so I started by writing a simple TCP/IP chat program with a simple client/server messaging system that could be entirely separate from the game code. With that ready, I took the old Plot & Conquer project and cut out the parts specific to that game. What remained was a working 2D game engine. I stuck my new networking code into this, and it worked! I thought of this game concept, and started making it. A few days later we started playing it multiplayer. It's become a fun, fast-paced and competitive game -- just as I like them.

Plot & ConquerSummer 2010

A turn based strategy game set in Napoleonic Europe.

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This was my first attempt at making a game from "scratch". I started in July 2010 and released it at the end of August. Games have a lot of parts to them. The biggest part of the project was the user interface system. I wanted it to be flexible and easy for me to change it without going into the code at all. I really liked how Scourge of War - Gettysburg had its UI defined entirely in a spreadsheet so it was fully customizable for modders, and this no doubt made it easier to design the original itself. I used the same idea for mine, and it has been very rewarding, as I was able to reuse the UI engine for my new game, Org.

The game supports multiplayer as well as singleplayer with AI.

Hawks' Divided Nation2008-2009

When I didn't want to wait for Scourge of War, I improved this American Civil War multiplayer experience.

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I got American Conquest - Divided Nation in 2008, and found that the gameplay was simply terrible -- which explained why no one was playing it. However, it did have very good artwork, and great freedom for map making. I've long had a fascination with terrain, particularly on battlefields. If I could turn the game into something fun, I could make lots of maps for it that people would enjoy, and this is what I did.

It was a long journey, at the time there was no documentation about modding this game engine. In early 2009, I discovered that it was possible to create a dll file that the game would use at runtime (with a hook into the main loop), and that this worked even in multiplayer! Thus began one of my first programming adventures. It was C++, and it got pretty ugly, but it was thrilling to see what I could do in this game. The resulting mod and code are used by the Hawks Online Gaming Club. Divided Nation finally became a fun game.



Below is a list of other things I've made of varying interest:  

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