Keyboard input for a simple game

Hello. For a class project I am doing a simple 3D game using C++ and OpenGl.

So far, I am happy with the progress. It basically works the way I expect. As of now, I can use the "K","L" keys to move a paddle across the across the screen. The problem I am having is when the game is actually started, the user pushes "S" to start the game, it goes into a while loop and doesn't exit until the ball goes out of play.

This works fine, but while the loop is executing, the keyboard function doesn't work, therefore it doesn't last long as I cannot move the paddle.

It seems like after the loop exits, it stored all of the keyboard inputs, because then the paddle is drawn in the correct position. Its just not working while the loop is active.

Is there a way to temporarily break from the loop so as to check the keyboard function? If not, I need to find a way to force the system to check for keystrokes every run through the loop.

Here is some code if this helps.

//<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<< myKeyboard >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>
void myKeyboard(unsigned char key, int x, int y)
{
  switch(key)
  {
  case 'l': movePlayer( 0.3); break; //slide paddle right
  case 'k': movePlayer(-0.3); break; // slide paddle left
  case 's': startGame();      break; // start the game
  case 'r': resetGame();      break; // reset the game

  }
  glutPostRedisplay(); // draw it again
}

//<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<Game Loop>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>
while (game_state == PLAYING && player.lives > 0)
   {
     //I think i need to call Move Paddle here, but i am not sure how.
         
     // Check to see if ball is falling off bottom of table
     BallOut();
     
     //Check Paddle-Ball Collision
     Check_Paddle_Ball_Collision();
     
     //Check Brick-Ball Collision
....
bbaisleyAsked:
Who is Participating?
I wear a lot of hats...

"The solutions and answers provided on Experts Exchange have been extremely helpful to me over the last few years. I wear a lot of hats - Developer, Database Administrator, Help Desk, etc., so I know a lot of things but not a lot about one thing. Experts Exchange gives me answers from people who do know a lot about one thing, in a easy to use platform." -Todd S.

DeathCheeseCommented:
It sounds like you are starving the window's message queue with your while(PLAYING) loop.  What's probably happening is glut isn't able to check the message queue until the ball goes out of play and you leave the function containing the while(PLAYING) loop.  Then it  checks the message queue, getting all the keyboard input and calling your keyboard function.

If you aren't already, register the idle callback function and put your game logic (no rendering) in it.  The idle function is automatically called by glut every frame, I believe.  Then you can have code that might look like this:

void IdleFunc(...)
{
    switch(game_state)
    {
        ...
        // any other game states
        ...
        case PLAYING:
        {
            // BallOut, Collision, etc
        }
        ....
    }
}

That way, your code will be run just once per frame, and then glut can continue and do what it needs to do, checking the message queue and gathering keyboard input among other things.

Hope that helped!
0

Experts Exchange Solution brought to you by

Your issues matter to us.

Facing a tech roadblock? Get the help and guidance you need from experienced professionals who care. Ask your question anytime, anywhere, with no hassle.

Start your 7-day free trial
It's more than this solution.Get answers and train to solve all your tech problems - anytime, anywhere.Try it for free Edge Out The Competitionfor your dream job with proven skills and certifications.Get started today Stand Outas the employee with proven skills.Start learning today for free Move Your Career Forwardwith certification training in the latest technologies.Start your trial today
Computer Games

From novice to tech pro — start learning today.

Question has a verified solution.

Are you are experiencing a similar issue? Get a personalized answer when you ask a related question.

Have a better answer? Share it in a comment.