although one cannot speak of lack of news about jMonkeyEngine in the past months, heres another update for you.
Introducing the NeoTextureEditor Plugin
Holger Dammertz, the author of NeoTextureEditor was very cooperative and now NeoTextureEditor is available as a jMP plugin through the update center! NeoTextureEditor allows creating tiled textures procedurally using a simple node interface for generating images, blending them, creating normal maps and much more. You can directly export the generated images as png files and use them in jMP, but theres more!
Procedural materials for jME3
As NeoTexture is not only an editor but also a library to generate textures from saved .tgr files the jMP plugin also brings a library for your distribution games that you can use to load .tgr files directly in jME3 as a material, without exporting the textures before! This means high-quality textures for your models but just tiny description files in your distribution game. Textures usually make up most of the size of a game distribution, why download when you can generate?
To use it first create a new tgr file and edit it. In the properties field of any image node, enter the name of the texture as it would appear in a j3m file, like “m_ColorMap” for SimpleTextured.j3md. Save the file.
Now open your Main.java file and the Palette (Window->Palette) and you will see two presets in the palette for adding the loader to the assetManager and for loading a material. Drag&Drop them both to the initialize() method of your Application, correct the MaterialDef and tgr file path names to your desire and you’re ready to load your procedural material. See a code example here.
Holger and myself are still working on improving the integration of the editor but I think this is a very fruitful cooperation already. Its also an excellent example of integration of external projects and libraries into the jME economy. Making a plugin of the swing-based editor was really a painless experience and the supplied library and code palette examples should make it very easy to add, upgrade and use NeoTexture materials in your jME3 application. So have some procedural fun ^^
Brent and I are working on a terrain editor for the new terrain system, allowing editing the terrain heightmap, textures etc. Keep your eyes open for that one!
SpiderMonkey server manager
Lars has been working on a server manager for SpiderMonkey servers that will integrate into jMP in the “Services” manager and allow managing running SpiderMonkey servers right from within jMP which should make development of your next MMO much easier.
Up the monkeys!