LibGDX 1.3 released

9. August 2014

 

LibGDX, the cross platform, Java based, open source gaming library for iOS, Android, HTML5 and Desktop has just reached version 1.3.  The details of the new release:

image

 

  • API Addition: Added Input.isKeyJustPressed
  • API Addition: multiple recipients are now supported by MessageDispatcher, see https://github.com/libgdx/libgdx/wiki/Message-Handling#multiple-recipients
  • API Change: State#onMessage now takes the message receiver as argument.
  • API Addition: added StackStateMachine to the gdx-ai extension.
  • API change: ShapeRenderer: rect methods accept scale, more methods can work under both line and fill types, auto shape type changing.
  • API change: Built-in ShapeRenderer debugging for Stage, see https://github.com/libgdx/libgdx/pull/2011
  • Files#getLocalStoragePath now returns the actual path instead of the empty string synonym on desktop (LWJGL and JGLFW).
  • Fixed and improved xorshift128+ PRNG implementation.
  • Added support for Tiled’s animated tiles, and varying frame duration tile animations.
  • Fixed an issue with time granularity in MessageDispatcher.
  • Updated to Android API level 19 and build tools 19.1.0 which will require the latest Eclipse ADT 23.02, see http://stackoverflow.com/questions/24437564/update-eclipse-with-android-development-tools-23 for how things are broken this time…
  • Updated to RoboVM 0.0.14 and RoboVM Gradle plugin version 0.0.10
  • API Addition: added FreeTypeFontLoader so you can transparently load BitmapFonts generated through gdx-freetype via AssetManager, see FreeTypeFontLoaderTest.java
  • Preferences put methods now return “this” for chaining
  • Fixed issue 2048 where MessageDispatcher was dispatching delayed messages immediately.
  • API Addition: 3d particle system and accompanying editor, contributed by lordjone, see pull request 2005
  • API Addition: extended shape classes like Circle, Ellipse etc. with hashcode/equals and other helper methods, see pull request #2018
  • minor API change: fixed a bug in handling of atlasPrefixes, see pull request 2023
  • Bullet: btManifoldPoint member getters/setters changed from btVector3 to Vector3, also it is no longer pooled, instead static instances are used for callback methods
  • Added Intersector#intersectRayRay to detect if two 2D rays intersect, see pull request 2132
  • Bullet: ClosestRayResultCallback, AllHitsRayResultCallback, LocalConvexResult, ClosestConvexResultCallback and subclasses now use getter/setters taking a Vector3 instead of btVector3, see pull request #2175
  • 2d particle system supports pre-multiplied alpha.
  • Bullet: btIDebugDrawer/DebugDrawer now use pooled Vector3 instances instead of btVector3, see pull request #2174

 

 

You can download the LibGDX setup app here.  Of course, GameFromScratch.com has a complete set of LibGDX tutorials to get you started.

Programming, News ,




How my upcoming vacation lead to a new game dev project

30. July 2014

 

It’s that time of year… time to put everything on hold for a while, get away for a bit and consume far too much food and drink.  Yes, GameFromScratch is about to go on vacation for a few days.  Bonus points if you can figure out where I am going from the picture below!

 

 

 

… anyways, being a game developer, do we ever really take vacation?  We are seemingly always thinking about how to accomplish something or other in our head.  This trip will no doubt be no different…

 

Actually, it will be different on one level.  I recently acquired a full sized iPad Air ( until now, I’ve only had a Mini ) and I am thinking about doing an entire series of creating games entirely on an iPad.  Let’s see just how much you can accomplish entirely on an iPad.  This means coding, game asset creation, everything on the iPad.

 

I’ve actually already purchased a number of items required.  I purchased a license of Codea back when I first got my iPad Mini, but I found the limited screen size to be a rather big annoyance.  I also have purchased several different drawing programs, including Paper, PhotoShop, ArtRage and iDraw.  I even have a functioning blog packaging, so I can right about the process.  Not really certain how I will tackle audio creation.  Another major downside is asset sharing…  this is one of the major limitations of iOS, sharing data between apps is pretty horrible.  The defacto workaround seems to be DropBox, but that depends entirely on how well the hotel’s Wifi works.  It could end up being a fun little side project.  Or it could be a complete waste of time… I guess we shall see.

 

Fortunately what it will be is a good LUA refresher, which I need for an upcoming and much larger project I am embarking on when I return.  More news on that later.

 

So anyways, that’s what I am about to do… if GameFromScratch.com goes silent until next Wednesday… guess that means the hotel wireless was pretty awful.  In which case, have a great week!

News, Totally Off Topic




Unreal Engine 4.3 released

18. July 2014

I just received the following email from Unreal:

 

TranslusentFogDemo

Unreal Engine 4.3 Released!

 

More than 500 updates ship in this release! Unreal Engine 4.3 includes greatly improved mobile support, awesome new rendering features, improved Blueprint workflows, and strides toward an excellent experience on Mac and laptops.

 

Check out the new World Composition tools, spline features, and the preview of Paper2D, our 2D toolset! You also get SpeedTree 7 support, our work on Metal API for iOS 8 to date, and new Oculus Rift features such as time warping.

 

There’s no limit to what you can do with Unreal Engine 4 for only $19 per month.

 

Paper2D Side Scroller Template

Have fun with the new side-scroller template game as you become acquainted with Paper2D.

Read More

 

VR Couch Knights

We love VR, and Unreal Engine 4.3 supports the new Oculus DK2 out of the box! Dive into Epic’s popular “Couch Knights” demo which has been making the rounds at GDC and other shows.

Read More

SpeedTree 7

SpeedTree 7 support is here, and UE4 trees are 33% off in the SpeedTree store throughJuly 26!

Read More

Rendering Goodies

Rendering goodies include distance field ambient occlusion, skylight global illumination and shadowed translucency.

Read More

Behavior Trees

Better AI tools! Switch to the new Blackboard mode inside the Behavior Tree Editor to edit and debug Blackboard entries.

Read More

Large World Support!

Large world support! Check out the new World Composition tools. Create sub-levels and position them anywhere.

Read More

Customize Your Static Mesh Collision!

Customize your static mesh collision!

Read More

Spline Editing

Edit splines directly within your levels!

Read More

 

Build games and apps for Windows, Mac, iOS, Android, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Linux, SteamOS, HTML5 and VR platforms.

Get Unreal for $19/Month

Mobile Developers!

Zen Gardens

Google recently demonstrated the graphics power of L, the upcoming release of Android, using Epic's Rivalry demo running on Tegra K1 at Google I/O. Mobile is a huge focus for UE4, and we hope you’ll enjoy all the latest improvements!

Read More

 

 

The UE4 Roadmap continues to evolve, and we encourage you to vote for features that want to use.

 

To ask questions and share feedback, please visit the forums or join our live broadcasts at Twitch.tv every Thursday at 2pm ET, which you can always go back and view atYouTube.com.

 

Hats off to the developers who contributed to this great release! These who helped are forever immortalized in the Credits section under the editor’s Help menu.

 

Thank you for being a part of this adventure. We can’t wait to see what you build next.

 

We are one step closer to Paper2D support, which is their support for 2D engines. Occulus Rift support is no doubt cool for those developing for the Rift. Not quite as impressive as the last release, but still a good amount of progress from Unreal.

News ,




Unity for PlayStation Mobile released and PlayStation Mobile 2.0 SDK released

23. June 2014

 

Thanks to a tip from a reader David I have become aware of the release for PlayStation Mobile and it’s completely free.  Here’s the details from the Unity Blog post.

 

Following hot on the heels of the PlayStation®Mobile (PSM) public preview, we’re proud to announce the full official release of the Unity for PSM build. Hurrah!

Tell me it’s free

Yep, the extremely good news is that, for the first time ever, anyone on the PSM Developer Program can publish their Unity content to PlayStation®Store and target PlayStation®Vita (PS Vita) completely free of charge.

There’s no dev kit; there are no fees. What’s more, the PSM build option works with both the free version of Unity and Unity Pro so developing and deploying your PS Vita game need never cost you a dime.

What do I get?

Amongst other things, the Unity for PSM build option features In-App Purchase APIs, so it’s easy to bring free-to-play content to the PlayStation®Store. Plus, you can use the Unity for PSM build option to distribute to the new entertainment system from Sony Computer Entertainment Inc. (SCE): PlayStation®TV.

If you’ve already downloaded the public preview, you’ll also notice that we’ve been busy fixing bugs, boosting performance and adding on-device script debugging.

Sounds cool, how do I get hold of it?

Download a dedicated version of the Unity engine with the PSM build option here (we’ll be integrating it in the Unity product cycle A.S.A.P.). Note that to deploy to PSM you have to register with SCE – it’s quick and simple. The PSM build option is only available for the Windows version of Unity.

How does PSM deployment differ from Unity’s PS Vita build option?

The PSM build option is designed to provide quick, simple and free access for development on a standard retail PS Vita. Unity’s existing PS Vita build option, on the other hand, gives you full native access to PS Vita and full access to PSN. As part of your PS Vita dev kit, you also get a comprehensive suite of performance and native debugging tools, Visual Studio integration and Razor CPU/GPU performance tools.

Why target PS Vita?

If you’re thinking about making the leap to console development, targeting PS Vita is a great way to familiarize yourself with PlayStation® controls and conventions. What’s more, porting your existing mobile games to PS Vita is extremely easy!

 

Also from Sony we heard that PlayStation Mobile SDK v 2.0 was released:

 

Image

The official versions of "Unity for PSM" and "PSM SDK 2.0" are now available!
Publish your unique and innovative games and applications!

The official versions of "Unity for PSM" and "PSM SDK 2.0" are now available!
Submission of master packages deployed by the new SDKs has been enabled.

The official version of "Unity for PSM"

We have fixed bugs according to your feedback from the Public Preview to release the official version of "Unity for PSM".
Many thanks for your cooperation!

Here are the differences between the official version and the Public Preview.

  • Added functions to create and submit master packages.
  • Settings to publish PlayStation®TV compatible applications has been enabled.
  • Enabled to use "rear touch pad" feature in your games / applications.

Please refer to the FAQ Unity for PSM Overview for how to set up development environments and the development Flow.

PSM SDK 2.0

"PSM SDK 2.0" is exclusive for PS Vita and was made based on PSM SDK 1.20. PlayStation®TV is also supported with PSM SDK 2.0.

Main differences between "PSM SDK 2.0" and "PSM SDK 1.2" are as below.

  • Enabled to use "rear touch pad" feature in your games / applications.
  • Compressed textures are available.
  • Increased available memory (resource heap memory: 96MiB, graphics memory: 96MiB).

PlayStation®TV with PSM SDK 1.2

An updated version of PSM Publishing Utility is now available for PSM SDK 1.2.
It enables you to publish PSM Applications developed by PSM SDK 1.2 to PlayStation®TV.
Download the update zip package from SDK 1.21.02 tab on the PSM SDK download page .

Please also refer to Comparison between Unity for PSM and PSM SDKs for detailed explanation of the differences.

"PSM Application Development Guidelines" have been updated

With the release of new SDKs, we have updated the "PSM Application Development Guidelines".
https://psm.playstation.net/static/general/all/en/development_guidelines.html

The major changes/modifications are as below:

  • Added requirements for PlayStation®TV support.
  • As PSM Applications developed with "Unity for PSM" and "PSM SDK 2.0" will be distributed to PS Vita store (and as optional to PS Vita TV store) exclusively, some requirements were omitted for those SDKs.
  • Some of the restrictions regarding Networking feature were removed.

 

I’m guessing there are a few things confusing here as the branding is getting a bit muddled at this point, I’ll try to address what I can.

 

First off… what’s the difference between Unity for PlayStation Mobile vs Unity for PS Vita?

Well the most obvious difference is Unity for Vita requires a PlayStation license and developer kit and gives full access to the device.  Unity for PSM on the other hand is completely free and requires only a PSM developer license ( currently free ) and will work on commercial hardware.  The limitations however I am currently unaware of.  Presumably Unity for PSM has the same hardware constraints as PSM 2.

 

What is the difference between PSM SDK and Unity for PlayStation Mobile?

They are completely different things.  PSM for Unity is an additional target for the Unity development environment.  PSM on the other hand is a C# based game development kit similar to XNA.

 

What happened to PSM for Android support?

My guess is they put a bullet in it.  The increased memory constraints is a sure sign of that.  The sad part is, it was the requirement to support ancient phones that handicapped PSM in the first place.

 

Can you recommend a good book for PlayStation Mobile programming?

Why yes, yes I can, one written by yours truly. :)  Of course there is a tutorial series here.  It was written for 1.0 SDK but sadly, not all that much has changed.

News ,




LibGDX 1.2 released

22. June 2014

 

Title kinda says it all, LibGDX 1.2 was released today.  The update includes:

 

 

I don’t think the breaking changes will impact any of our tutorial series.  Interesting to see the new AI extension, will be nice to see how that develops ( A* next? ).  Improved IntelliJ build times are certainly welcome.  You can get started here.

News ,