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15. March 2017

 

There is no requirement to use Visual Studio Code when developing in Haxe, it is however the editor I will be using for this series.  If you would prefer to use HaxeDevelop, be sure to check this earlier tutorial on how to get up and running.  There are several other editor options available with varying levels of Haxe language support.

 

First things first, we need to install Visual Studio Code, you can download it here.

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The install process is pretty straight forward, run the installer and chose the defaults and you should be fine.  Once installed run Visual Studio Code.

 

Now we need to add Haxe language support.  Click the extensions tab, filter on “haxe” and click the install button for “Haxe -- Haxe language support”.

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Once installed it will prompt you to reload Visual Studio Code.  Do so.

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If you haven’t already, create a project.  Instructions for doing so are available here.  Projects are folder based in Visual Studio Code.  To load your project either switch to the project directory from the commandline and type “code .” or load Visual Studio Code and select File->Open Folder.

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Now you can run your game using Ctrl (Or Cmd) + Shift + P to bring up the command palette.  Now enter run task, like so:

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Next pick the target platform you want to build for:

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And TADA, your running application, assuming everything worked right:

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If an error occurred, it will be show in the Problems panel:

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Granted this process is a bit of a pain in the backside.  Thankfully there is a short cut for building and running the default build.  Simply hit Ctrl + Shift + B and it will compile for the default platform.  So… what is the default platform?  That would be Flash.  This of course means you have to have a Flash player installed.  Thankfully you can download one here.

 

What do you do if you want to change the default platform?  It’s a simple enough task, simply locate the file tasks.json in the .vscode folder.  Next locate the line “isBuildCommand”:true, and make sure this is copied to the entry you want to be the default build.  Like Highlanders, there can be only one, so be sure to erase it from the default “flash debug” task.

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The Video

Programming , ,

14. March 2017

 

A few days back Google released GAPID, Graphics API Debugger, which is open source and available on Github.  GAPID is described as:

GAPID is a collection of tools that allows you to inspect, tweak and replay calls from an application to a graphics driver.

 

GAPID is composed of several different components, including:

GAPII: Graphics API Interceptor

A layer that sits between the application / game and the GPU driver, recording all the calls and memory accesses.

 
GAPIS: Graphics API Server

A process that analyses capture streams reporting incorrect API usage, processes the data for replay on various target devices, and provides an RPC interface to the client.

 
GAPIR: Graphics API Replay daemon

A stack-based VM used to playback capture files, imitating the original application’s / game's calls to the GPU driver. Supports read-back of any buffer / framebuffer, and provides profiling functionality.

 
GAPIC: Graphics API Client

The frontend user interface application. Provides visual inspection of the capture data, memory, resources, and frame-buffer content.

 
GAPIL: Graphics API Language

A new domain specific language to describe a graphics API in its entirety. Combined with our template system to generate huge parts of the interceptor, server and replay systems.

GameDev News

13. March 2017

 

Welcome to our tutorial series on creating games using Haxe and HaxeFlixel.  This particular tutorial is going to cover setting up your Haxe development environment, installing and configuring HaxeFlixel and finally creating your first simple game.  Throughout this series I will be using Visual Studio Code as my editor, you can learn more about setting up Visual Studio Code for Haxe development here.

 

First we need to install the Haxe toolchain.  First head on over to the Haxe download page and pick the installer appropriate for your development platform.

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Run the installer.  The default settings should be fine.

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Now we need to install Haxe Flixel.  With Haxe installed we can now use command line tools to finish the installation process.  Create a new command prompt or terminal as Administrator if possible.  Then run the command

haxelib install flixel

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This will download all the various required libraries for HaxeFlixel to run including lime ( a low level hardware library ) and OpenFL.  Please note that as of writing, HaxeFlixel is NOT compatible with the most recent version of OpenFL and Lime, hopefully this is fixed soon.  Don’t worry though, the above command will download and configure the correct version.

 

Next run the command

haxelib run lime setup

 

Finally, HaxeFlixel has a set of command line tools and templates available, I will be using these tools for this tutorial series, so lets install those as well.  Run the following two commands:

haxelib install flixel-tools

haxelib run flixel-tools setup

 

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At this point the “flixel” command is now available for you.  Let’s use it to create a new game project.  In the directory you want to create your game, enter:

flixel tpl –n “MyFirstFlixelGame”

 

A new project will be created for you and if you selected an IDE during the install process, it will automatically open:

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As part of the previous process several demos were installed as well.  If you want to jump into some code, instead run the command:

flixel create

This will present you will all of the available templates you can create from:

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That’s it for the setup process, in the next tutorial we jump in to the code of our first application.

 

The Video

Programming , ,

10. March 2017

 

Gideros Mobile just released version 2017.3.  Gideros Mobile is an open source, cross platform, Lua powered game engine available for download here for Windows and Mac OS.  This release brings plugin improvements, Windows UWP support improvements, some Lua language extensions and more. 

Release details from the Gideros Blog:

Gideros 2017.3

This is a big release and has been described as “the best Gideros ever!”. In releasing this version we’ve also implemented a new testing system with more beta testers so it should be rock solid.

One major improvement to UWP (formerly WinRT) is that there is no explicit reference to a Visual Studio SQLite extension. Previously users had to install an extension from VS “app store” before they could build Windows/Phone apps. The problem was Microsoft keeps updating the extension so when people downloaded the latest Visual Studio release it was always out of sync with the Gideros auto-generated project leading to manual tinkering. Now the bottom line is everything Just Works and you don’t need to download anything from Microsoft.

We’ve also had fun improving the Lua language (well just a little bit). Additional operators have been added to find the min, max of two numbers or to convert from degrees to radians or vice versa. Don’t worry! You can still use the standard library functions if you prefer but the new operators are fast and easy.

Finally, as well as LOTS of plugin improvements, HTML now comes with the Facebook and Ads plugins as standard so you can monetise your HTML5 apps easily. This is a big step: the first official plugins for HTML5 and very useful ones at that!

And, as an extra bonus, Gideros now supports a brand new advertising platform: kiip. Kiip is a new and innovative reward/ads system which is supported on iOS and Android.

GameDev News

9. March 2017

 

Back in November of last year, YoyoGames launched the first beta for GameMaker Studio 2.  Yesterday GameMaker Studio 2 was finally released.  GameMaker is a cross platform 2D focused game engine first released back in 1999.  Since then it has been used to create several popular games and game prototypes including such titles as Hotline Miami, Spelunky, Nidhogg, Badlands and many more. 

 

New features in GameMaker Studio 2 include:

With a completely redesigned User Interface, powerful new editors, enhanced monetization tools and more, GameMaker Studio 2 also introduces new features and improvements with:GMS

  • Level editing features: new layer-based level editing gives developers the ability to create more complex visuals with backgrounds, tiles, instances, assets and paths. New features also include level inheritance to create multiple levels at once, and an advanced tiling system that automatically selects the right tile for the job;

  • Cross-platform: available for Windows (Vista and above) for target development across multiple platforms including Windows Desktop, Mac OS X, Ubuntu, iOS, Android (including Android TV, Amazon Fire and Fire TV), PlayStation 4, Xbox One and more;

  • Workflow enhancements: a new innovative workflow and seamless path from DnD™ to actual code with multiple workspaces, user definable resource views, real-time updates from one editor to another, and cross platform source level debugging;

  • Native extensions: GameMaker Language (GML) supports all native targets to simplify the cross-platform development.

 

GameMaker is available starting at $99USD.  For more information be sure to check out the full release announcement blog available here.

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