I’d like to keep it Java-centric, also.
Is Minecraft no longer Java?
I agree with @princec about there being continued interest. It may not be as popular as Unity or Unreal engines/environments, but I think Java remains a good choice in terms of starting a game from the bottom up (compared to C# or C++).
One source of newcomers not mentioned (and a slight advantage to Java over C): many, many college courses and even High School programming courses are in Java these days. And it does continue to get the highest Tioga rating (for whatever that is worth).
I DO think updating the forum would add to its popularity and to Java as a choice for game makers, if the following happens:
- we give equal prominence to JavaFX (rather than having it as a sub-category of Java2D which makes no sense)
- we create a category for packaging and distribution, as this is a significant issue, with possible sub-threads for Windows, Mac, Linux, but maybe also attention to matters that come up when distributing on services like itch or steam?
- maybe also consider something for dealing with the new modularity and/or IDE’s and/or systems like ANT/MAVEN/etc. (as they relate to games & game programming architecture), or maybe a topic on new Java developments (as they keep arriving with the new update schedule)
It could also be neat to have a category devoted to “game engines” for those individuals interested exploring and learning more about game-development infrastructure.
With stuff like that more prominently visible, the site might feel more relevant to new-comers that arrive to check things out.
Having a “jam” or two might be nice, too. The 4K rule always seemed kind of stringent a requirement to me. I know others liked the challenge, but I worry more about speed of development and making something that looks and plays well, and not so much getting something to work in such a small code base. Besides, if we are mostly going to be packaging JVM’s with games via, JLINK, adding 4K to a code base of, say, a 75MB JVM is kind of ¯_(ツ)_/¯.