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15. May 2013

Today during the Google IO event there was an announcement that both shocked and pleased me.  They are releasing a new IDE for Android development.  Best of all, it's based on IntelliJ, easily my favourite Java IDE.

 

AndroidStudio

(Photo's are from Verge )

 

One of the coolest new features is the addition of a tool allowing you to see your code running on a multitude of different devices at the same time:

Verge super wide

 

I can say easily one of the things I hate most about Android development is Eclipse, which is pretty much the defacto tool for Android. You could always work in IntelliJ or Netbeans, but it was never quite as seamless and always seem to have a gap or two in functionality.  Any news that might potentially keep me away from the hateful IDE that is Eclipse is great news to me!

 

You can read more about the announcement over at The Verge.  As of yet, no downloads are available on Googles websites.

 

 

Edit: Download link now available.  Also, so hands on screenshots available here.

News , ,

14. May 2013

I just recently took a look at available Haxe game engines and decided to take a closer look at two of them, HaxeFlixel and Awe6.  I started with Awe6, as frankly it's the most non-traditional of the two options and as a result, the most interesting to me.

 

Awe6 is a very design pattern heavy framework, built around the concepts of Inversion of Control and Dependency Injection, but reality is, just about every single design pattern that isn't the Singleton make an appearance.  As a direct result though, groking it all can be a bit confusing… my current understand of things took a great deal of digging through code and documentation to arrive at.  That is one immediate problem with Awe6…  the number of examples available can at best be called lacking.

 

I actually prefer going through working code than I do documentation, so this part is a rather large disappointment.  Then again, if I document awe6 usage, I suppose I will have more people interested in the material, double edged sword I suppose.  Anyways, so far as existing code to work from, there is the incredibly simple Hello World example, the demo in github and finally this example, probably the best of the bunch.

 

 

Ok, enough about what other people have done, now lets take a look at what I've discovered.  One of the ongoing trends of Haxe development holds true for Awe6.  If you are developing on Windows using FlashDevelop, the process is amazingly smooth.  If you aren't… it isn't.  I've given in and just work under FlashDevelop, at least when creating my projects.  I deploy to Dropbox then can reboot and test in Mac if needed.  The following instructions apply to Windows/Flashdevelop only.  You can get it working on other OSes, but its a pain.

 

Getting started is brutally simple.  If you haven't already, install Haxe and NME.

Open a command prompt and type haxelib install awe6

Then run the command haxelib run awe6 install

 

That's it.  Assuming you have FlashDevelop installed, you can now create a new awe6 Project via the project menu, otherwise refer to their site for details of working from command line.  It will create a fully fleshed out folder structure for you, but truth is, when just starting out this is a bit daunting.  That said, the Hello World example is a bit too trivial, so I set about writing something that is middle ground… a more advanced Hello World, or less advanced example project, depending on your perspective.

 

This awe6 sample simply loads an image and allows you to manipulate it using the left and right arrows.  The code:

 

 

import awe6.Types;
import nme.display.Bitmap;
import nme.display.BitmapData;
import nme.display.Sprite;
import nme.Assets;
import nme.Lib;

/**
 * ...
 * @author Mike
 */

class Main
{
	static function main()
	{
		var l_factory = new Factory( Lib.current, '<?xml version="1.0" encoding="utf-8"?><data></data>' );
	}
	
	public function new()
	{
		// needed for Jeash
	}
}

class MyImage extends Entity  {
	private var _sprite:Sprite;
	
	public function new( p_kernel:IKernel )
	{
		_sprite = new Sprite();
		super(p_kernel, _sprite);
	}
	
	public override function _init(): Void {
		super._init();
		_sprite.addChild(new Bitmap(Assets.getBitmapData("assets/img/mechwarriorFrameScaled.png")));
	}
	
	override private function _updater(?p_deltaTime:Int = 0): Void
	{
		super._updater(p_deltaTime);
		if (_kernel.inputs.keyboard.getIsKeyDown(EKey.RIGHT))
			_sprite.x += 10;
		if (_kernel.inputs.keyboard.getIsKeyDown(EKey.LEFT))
			_sprite.x -= 10;
	}
}

class Factory extends AFactory {
	public override function createScene( type : EScene) : IScene
	{
		var scene = new Scene(this._kernel, type);
		scene.addEntity(new MyImage(this._kernel),true);
		return scene;
	}
}

 

 

 

Below is the Flash target if you want to play around with it (click it first to give keyboard focus, then price left or right arrow):

 

If you created a Awe6 project, you will notice the one above is a great deal simpler, but all the same basics are there.  Some of the terminology may certainly seem alien to you… Factory? Entity?  But don't worry, its not actually that difficult in the end.

 

Let's start with the Factory…  this is basically the "guts" of your game…  guts actually is probably the wrong analogy… brains would be a more accurate description or perhaps backbone.  Essentially you extend the Factory class to implement specific behaviour to your game by overriding a series of methods.  In our simple example above, we override the createScene method, but there are dozens of other methods and members that you can set.  The full documentation is right here.  Essentially the factory configures/defines your game, handles special actions ( such as the back key ), allows you to provide your own implementation of the Sessions, Preloader, Overlay, etc…  

 

So, if Factory is the brains or backbone of your application, Scenes are the meat of it.  This is how you organize your game into manageable pieces.  You could create a Scene for say… the title screen, one for when the game is playing, one for displaying the high scores, one for credits, one for settings, etc.  On top of this, literally, you have the Overlay, which is basically a top level UI or HUD if you like.  Your Factory class can create one, but I believe you can also create one at the Scene level as well.

 

After Scene, we have entities… simply put, these are "things" in your game, visible or not.  This could be… your main player, an enemy or a simple proximity trigger.  Entities can in turn contain other entities.  A Scene can contain numerous entities which themselves can contain many more.  Each entity will receive an update() call per tick for updating itself.  That's the bare basics of the hierarchy of objects and that just scratches the surface… it doesn't touch on other aspects such as Agendas ( state machines ), Session ( game state ), Preloader ( asset loading/caching ), or many other aspects of the framework.  We also don't touch on the kernel yet, which is a very important concept that we will talk about in a moment.

 

Now, lets take a quick look at how our code works, in order of execution.  When our program's main() is called, we simply create an instance of Factory, a class we define that inherits from AFactory.  We pass in the context as well as a simple empty configuration in this case.  As part of the process ( we will look a bit deeper in a second ) our Factory classes createScene method is called.  In createScene, we create a simple scene and add a MyImage entity to it. MyImage is a simple Entity that contains a Sprite class holding our mech image.  In the updater method ( called each tick when the entity needs to update ), we check the kernel for input, and move our position accordingly.

 

Now, understanding exactly what is going on behind the scenes is probably the trickiest part, so lets take a closer look at the process.

 

As we mentioned earlier, the Factory class is critical to your game, forming it's backbone, setting major configuration settings and perhaps most importantly controlling scene creation.  This is where execution begins.  You inherit from AFactory, but awe6 remaps it to an appropriate version depending on your platform ( you can see this logic in action right here, the same trick is performed for a number of classes ), all of the platform specific implementations simply provide platform specific functionality, but ultimately inherit from this guy, AFactory.hx.  It's kinda confusing at first, but you only really need to involve yourself in the details if you are trying to grok the source code.  The most important part of of AFactory to understand at this point is this call:

 

inline private function _init():Void
{
#if haxe3
config = new Map<String,Dynamic>();
#else
config = new Hash<Dynamic>();
#end
_configure( true );
_driverInit();
}

 

The call _driverInit() is of critical importance.  This is where the kernel is created.  What is the kernel, other than the object we keep passing around?  Well if Factory is the backbone of your game, Kernal is the backbone of awe6.  Essentially, kernel IS the game engine, and ultimately it is created by your Factory class ( or more specifically, the class your factory inherits from ).  So, obviously kernel is important, let's take a look at it's Init() method, it will make a great deal of things clear:

 

override private function _init():Void

{

super._init();

_view = new View( this, _context, 0, this );

_processes = new List<IProcess>();

_helperFramerate = new _HelperFramerate( factory.targetFramerate );

_isPreloaded = false;

 

// Perform driver specific initializations.

isDebug = factory.isDebug;

isLocal = _driverGetIsLocal();

_driverInit();

 

// Initialize managers.

assets = _assetManagerProcess = new AAssetManager( _kernel );

audio =_audioManager = new AudioManager( _kernel );

inputs = _inputManager = new InputManager( _kernel );

scenes = _sceneManager = new SceneManager( _kernel );

messenger = _messageManager = new MessageManager( _kernel );

_view.addChild( _sceneManager.view, 1 );

_addProcess( _assetManagerProcess );

_addProcess( _inputManager );

_addProcess( _sceneManager );

_addProcess( _messageManager );

_addProcess( _audioManager );

 

// Set defaults for visual switches.

isEyeCandy = true;

isFullScreen = false;

 

// Signal completion to the factory and initialize factory-dependent components.

factory.onInitComplete( this );

 

session = factory.createSession();

session.reset();

_preloader = factory.createPreloader();

_addProcess( _preloader );

_view.addChild( _preloader.view, 2 );

}

 

This is where the various subsystems are created ( assetManager, audio, input, etc… ) and started running ( via addProcess call ).  Then you will notice the code calls back into the Factory, calling the onInitiComplete method.  At this point, the Factory now has a copy of the kernel and the kernel has a pointer to the factory.  One other very important call for program execution is 

_view.addChild( _sceneManager.view, 1 );

View is something drawn on screen, in this case the main window.  In sceneManager, this is where we go full circle, with the call:

scene = _kernel.factory.createScene( p_type );


This in turn is what calls our derived Factory class's createScene method, causing the Scene to be created, our entity to be added to the scene, etc...

 

The bright side is, you don't really need to know ANY of this to make use of Awe6.  I just personally hate using a framework if I don't understand process flow.  It's a clever architecture, decoupling key systems and allowing for you to organize your own code in a clean manner, while still enabling communication between various systems.

,

12. May 2013

Now that I have decided to go with Haxe and NME, there is the question of which game engine to use.  You may be thinking to yourself "isn't NME a game engine"?  No, not really, although it performs some game engine-y functions.  NME is more like a cross platform Haxe implementation of a Flash like development environment.  A game engine is built on top of this layer as ideally makes me life easier.  So, what are the options then?

 

Build my own

Well first of all there is the option to use nothing.  NME is fairly high level as it is, so the "cost" of building a game engine on top of it is much lower than with many other language/library combinations.  This has the advantage of removing a layer of code I am not intimately familiar with.  On the other hand, I'm lazy and in the business of creating a game, not an engine.  If someone else wants to do the work for me, and freely at that, who am I to say no?

 

HaxeFlixel

http://www.haxeflixel.com/

Flixel is one of the most common Flash 2D game frameworks, and HaxeFlixel is a Haxe port.  The reference documentation is pretty solid.  I have read that HaxeFlixel is a bit further along than our next entry.  The engine itself is state driven, with a state being the fundamental organization model of your game, while your game loop basically flips between states.  Examples of states would be say… Playing, MainMenu, HighScore, etc…  Flixel targets the most of the major targets including iOS, Android, Mac and Windows as well as Flash.  I don't believe HTML5 is supported.

 Status: Under active development

 

Sample HaxeFlixel code from here. ( a Menu state ) :

package;
 
import org.flixel.plugin.photonstorm.FlxDisplay;
import nme.Assets;
import nme.geom.Rectangle;
import nme.net.SharedObject;
import org.flixel.FlxButton;
import org.flixel.FlxG;
import org.flixel.FlxPath;
import org.flixel.FlxSave;
import org.flixel.FlxSprite;
import org.flixel.FlxState;
import org.flixel.FlxText;
import org.flixel.FlxU;
 
class MenuState extends FlxState
{
    override public function create():Void
    {
        #if !neko
        FlxG.bgColor = 0xff131c1b;
        #else
        FlxG.bgColor = {rgb: 0x131c1b, a: 0xff};
        #end 
        FlxG.mouse.show();
         
        //create a button with the label Start and set an on click function
        var startButton = new FlxButton(0, 0, "Start", onStartClick);
        //add the button to the state draw list
        add(startButton);
        //center align the button on the stage
        FlxDisplay.screenCenter(startButton,true,true);
    }
 
    //The on click handler for the start button
    private function onStartClick( ):Void
    {
        //Tell Flixel to change the active game state to the actual game
        FlxG.switchState( new PlayState( ) );
    }
     
    override public function destroy():Void
    {
        super.destroy();
    }
 
    override public function update():Void
    {
        super.update();
    }
}

 

 

HaxePunk

http://haxepunk.com/

HaxePunk is another popular Flash game framework that was ported to Haxe.  Instead of being organized around States like Flixel, HaxePunk is built around entities and scenes, a rather more traditional design.  Haxepunk seems to support the same targets as HaxeFlixel, which means most of the CPP targets ( iOS, Android, Windows, Mac, etc… ) but no HTML5.  Reference docs are pretty complete.

Status: Under active development.

 

Sample code taken from here.

 

 

package scenes;
 
import com.haxepunk.Scene;
import com.haxepunk.HXP;
 
class GameScene extends Scene
{
    public function new()
    {
        super();
    }
 
    public override function begin()
    {
        add(new entities.Ship(16, HXP.halfHeight));
        spawn(); // create our first enemy
    }
 
    public override function update()
    {
        spawnTimer -= HXP.elapsed;
        if (spawnTimer < 0)
        {
            spawn();
        }
        super.update();
    }
 
    private function spawn()
    {
        var y = Math.random() * HXP.height;
        add(new entities.Enemy(HXP.width, y));
        spawnTimer = 1; // every second
    }
 
    private var spawnTimer:Float;
}

 

 

Firmament Game Engine

http://martamius.github.io/Firmament.hx/

Another Haxe 2D game engine, this one supports almost every platform, and unlike Flixel and FlashPunk, that includes HTML5.  Like the others, it is completely open source.  Reference docs are OK, but a little light on description.

Status: Last github commit was 2 months ago as of writing.

No sample code located.

 

Stencyl

http://www.stencyl.com/

Stencyl is an interesting option.  It's a bit higher level than the other frameworks we mentioned earlier, as you can see directly below, Stencyl has an IDE.

Stencyl
In some ways, its much more similar to higher level tools like Construct 2 or Gamemaker in that you visually author your game.  Stencyl however is powered by Haxe and you can drop down to the Haxe code level if you want.  That said, it is a commercial product, so if you want to publish to iOS or ( I believe… the site doesn't make it obvious either way ) Android, you need to pay.  Documentation is pretty solid.
 
Status: Commercial product under active development.
 
No sample in this case due to the unique nature of the product.
 
Stencyl is certainly worth checking out, but probably not a good fit for the project I am working on, as I want the blog posts to be code focused and Stencyl abstracts most of that away. 

 

Citrux Engine

https://github.com/alamboley/CitruxEngine

CitruxEngine is a port of the Flash based game engine.  Sadly it seems to have been abandoned 

Status: Last update was 8 months ago.  May simply be complete but on first glance appears to be a dead end.

Sample code from here.

 

 

package fr.aymericlamboley.test;

import aze.display.SparrowTilesheet;
import aze.display.TileLayer;

import box2D.dynamics.contacts.B2Contact;

import com.citruxengine.core.CitruxEngine;
import com.citruxengine.core.State;
import com.citruxengine.math.MathVector;
import com.citruxengine.objects.CitruxSprite;
import com.citruxengine.objects.Box2DPhysicsObject;
import com.citruxengine.objects.platformer.box2d.Baddy;
import com.citruxengine.objects.platformer.box2d.Coin;
import com.citruxengine.objects.platformer.box2d.Crate;
import com.citruxengine.objects.platformer.box2d.Hero;
import com.citruxengine.objects.platformer.box2d.MovingPlatform;
import com.citruxengine.objects.platformer.box2d.Platform;
import com.citruxengine.objects.platformer.box2d.Sensor;
import com.citruxengine.physics.Box2D;
import com.citruxengine.utils.ObjectMaker;
import com.citruxengine.view.spriteview.SparrowAnimationSequence;
import com.citruxengine.view.spriteview.SpriteLoqAnimationSequence;
import com.citruxengine.view.spriteview.SpriteView;

import com.eclecticdesignstudio.spritesheet.SpriteSheet;
import com.eclecticdesignstudio.spritesheet.importers.SpriteLoq;

import format.SWF;

import nme.Assets;
import nme.geom.Rectangle;

class GameState extends State<GameData> {

    public function new() {

        super();
    }

    override public function initialize():Void {

        super.initialize();

        _ce.gameData.dataChanged.add(_gameDataChanged);

        var box2d:Box2D = new Box2D("Box2D");
        //box2d.visible = true;
        add(box2d);

        //ObjectMaker.FromMovieClip(new SWF(Assets.getBytes("Assets/LevelA1.swf")).createMovieClip());

        var background:CitruxSprite = new CitruxSprite("background", {x:0, y:0, view:"Assets/background.jpg"});
        add(background);

        var physicsObject:Crate = new Crate("physicsObject", 
{x:250, y:200, width:70, height:75, view:"Assets/crate.png"});
        //var physicsObject:PhysicsObject = new PhysicsObject("physicsObject", {x:100, y:20});
        //var physicsObject:PhysicsObject = new PhysicsObject("physicsObject", {x:100, y:20, radius:20});
        add(physicsObject);

        add(new Platform("platform1", {x:498, y:403, width:948, height:20}));
        add(new Platform("platform2", {x:0, y:202, width:20, height:404}));
        add(new Platform("platform3", {x:1278, y:363, width:624, height:20}));
        add(new Platform("platform4", {x:1566, y:165, width:20, height:404}));

        var spriteSheet:SpriteSheet = SpriteLoq.parse(ApplicationMain.getAsset("Assets/heroSpriteLoq.xml"), "Assets");
       
        var tileSheet:SparrowTilesheet = new SparrowTilesheet(Assets.getBitmapData("Assets/heroSparrow.png"), 
Assets.getText("Assets/heroSparrow.xml"));
        var heroTileLayer:TileLayer = cast(view, SpriteView).createTileLayer(tileSheet, "hero");
        var hero:Hero = new Hero("hero", {x:100, y:20, width:60, height:135, 
view:new SparrowAnimationSequence(heroTileLayer, "idle")});

        add(hero);

        spriteSheet = SpriteLoq.parse(ApplicationMain.getAsset("Assets/baddySpriteLoq.xml"), "Assets");
        tileSheet = new SparrowTilesheet(Assets.getBitmapData("Assets/baddySparrow.png"), 
Assets.getText("Assets/baddySparrow.xml"));
        var baddyTileLayer:TileLayer = new TileLayer(tileSheet);
        var baddy1:Baddy = new Baddy("baddy1", {x:440, y:200, width:46, height:68, 
view:new SparrowAnimationSequence(baddyTileLayer, "walk")});
        add(baddy1);

        var coin:Coin = new Coin("Coin", {x:Std.random(400), y:Std.random(300) + 100, radius:30, 
view:"Assets/jewel.png"});
        add(coin);
        coin.onBeginContact.add(_recoltCoin);

        view.setupCamera(hero, new MathVector(320, 240), new Rectangle(0, 0, 1550, 0), new MathVector(.25, .05));
    }

    override public function update(timeDelta:Float):Void {

        super.update(timeDelta);
    }

    private function _gameDataChanged(object:String, value:Dynamic):Void {

        trace(object + " - " + value);
    }

    private function _recoltCoin(ctc:B2Contact):Void {

        var hero:Hero = Std.is(ctc.m_fixtureA.getBody().getUserData(), Hero) ? 
ctc.m_fixtureA.getBody().getUserData() : Std.is(ctc.m_fixtureB.getBody().getUserData(), 
Hero) ? ctc.m_fixtureB.getBody().getUserData() : null;

        if (hero != null) {

            remove(Std.is(ctc.m_fixtureA.getBody().getUserData(), Coin) ? 
ctc.m_fixtureA.getBody().getUserData() : ctc.m_fixtureB.getBody().getUserData());
            _ce.sound.playSound("collect");
        }
    }
}

 

 

Cocos2D for Haxe

https://github.com/ralcr/cocos2d-haxe

It's Cocos2D… for Haxe ported from Cocos2D for iPhone.  I really don't want to try to explain the Cocos2D family tree… it's… confusing.

Status: Last updated on Github 4 months ago.  Not encouraging.

Sample code from here.

 

 

import cocos.support.UIImage;

class Sample_UIImage {

    public function new(){
        var uiimage = new UIImage().initWithContentsOfFile("grossini.png");
        uiimage.onComplete = callback (onComplete, uiimage);
        //flash.Lib.current.addChild ( new flash.display.Bitmap ( new Girl(0,0)));
    }
    function onComplete(uiimage:UIImage) {
        flash.Lib.current.addChild ( uiimage.bitmap );
    }

    public static function main(){
        haxe.Firebug.redirectTraces();
        flash.Lib.current.stage.scaleMode = flash.display.StageScaleMode.NO_SCALE;
        flash.Lib.current.stage.align = flash.display.StageAlign.TOP_LEFT;
        new Sample_UIImage();
    }
}

 

 

Spur

https://github.com/PixelPounce/Spur

A component based game engine.  It appears to be young and hasn't been updated in a long time, a bad combination so I am ignoring it.

 

Hydras

A port of the PushButton engine.  A component based game engine built over top of NME.  Supports many targets, but hasn't been updated in a while.  Documentation?  None, zilch, nodda.  

Status: Last updated about a year ago

Sample code from here:

 

package ;

import com.pblabs.components.scene2D.CircleShape;
import com.pblabs.components.scene2D.SceneAlignment;
import com.pblabs.components.spatial.SpatialComponent;
import com.pblabs.components.tasks.FunctionTask;
import com.pblabs.components.tasks.LocationTask;
import com.pblabs.components.tasks.RepeatingTask;
import com.pblabs.components.tasks.SerialTask;
import com.pblabs.engine.core.PBContext;
import com.pblabs.engine.core.PBGame;
import com.pblabs.engine.core.SignalBondManager;
using Lambda;

using com.pblabs.components.scene2D.SceneUtil;
using com.pblabs.components.tasks.TaskUtil;
using com.pblabs.engine.core.PBGameUtil;
using com.pblabs.engine.util.PBUtil;

class Demo
{
    public function new()
    {
        //Setup logging.
        com.pblabs.engine.debug.Log.setup();

        var game = new PBGame();
        game.addBaseManagers();

        //The main "context". This is equivalent to a level, or a menu screen.
        var context :PBContext = game.pushContext(PBContext);
        //This method is via 'using' SceneUtil
        var scene2D = context.createBaseScene();
        scene2D.sceneAlignment = SceneAlignment.TOP_LEFT;
        var layer = scene2D.addLayer("defaultLayer");

        //Create our blob that we will move around.
        var so = context.createBaseSceneEntity();
        // var blob = context.allocate(com.pblabs.components.scene2D.RectangleShape);
        // blob.borderRadius = 10;
        var blob  = context.allocate(com.pblabs.components.scene2D.CircleShape);
        // blob.radius = 30;

        blob.fillColor = 0xff0000;

        blob.width = 100;
        // blob.height = 300;
        blob.parentProperty = layer.entityProp();
        so.addComponent(blob);
        so.initialize("SomeSceneObj");

        var topLeft = scene2D.getAlignedPoint(SceneAlignment.TOP_LEFT);
        var topRight = scene2D.getAlignedPoint(SceneAlignment.TOP_RIGHT);
        var bottomRight = scene2D.getAlignedPoint(SceneAlignment.BOTTOM_RIGHT);
        var bottomLeft = scene2D.getAlignedPoint(SceneAlignment.BOTTOM_LEFT);

        //This method is via 'using' SceneUtil
        so.setLocation(50, 100);
        //This method is via 'using' TaskUtil
        so.addTask(new RepeatingTask(
            new SerialTask(
                LocationTask.CreateEaseOut(topLeft.x + blob.width / 2, topLeft.y + blob.height / 2, 2),
                LocationTask.CreateEaseOut(topRight.x - blob.width / 2, topRight.y + blob.height / 2, 2),
                LocationTask.CreateEaseOut(bottomRight.x - blob.width / 2, bottomRight.y - blob.height / 2, 2),
                LocationTask.CreateEaseOut(bottomLeft.x + blob.width / 2, bottomLeft.y - blob.height / 2, 2)
            )
            ));

        //Prevents the first frame have the location at (0,0)
        scene2D.update();
    }

    public static function main()
    {
        new Demo();
    }
}

 

Flambe

https://github.com/aduros/flambe

Unfortunately it's web and Flash only so a no-go for me.

 

AWE6

https://code.google.com/p/awe6/

Awe6 is an inversion-of-control / component based game engine.  If you've never heard of IoC or Dependency injection, let me show you this wonderful example from Stack Overflow that shows IoC at it's simplest.

Traditional way:

Class car {

Engine _engine; Public Car() { _engine = new V6(); }

}

Inverted Way

Class car {

Engine _engine;

Public Car(Engine engine) { _engine = engine; }

}

var car = new Car(new V4());

Essentially you are "injecting" functionality into your class, as here, you "Inject" the engine type into the car via the constructor.

Alright, enough about IoC and Dependency Injection, back to Awe6.

Awe6Overview

The above graphic is the overview from the Awe6 site.  The framework has fairly good documentation.

Status: Most recent change was a couple days ago:

Sample code from here:

 

 

package demo.scenes;
import awe6.core.Scene;
import awe6.extras.gui.Text;
import awe6.interfaces.EAudioChannel;
import awe6.interfaces.EMessage;
import awe6.interfaces.EScene;
import awe6.interfaces.ETextStyle;
import awe6.interfaces.IEntity;
import awe6.interfaces.IKernel;
import demo.AssetManager;
import demo.entities.Bouncer;
import demo.entities.Sphere;
import demo.Session;

class Game extends AScene
{
    public static inline var TIME_LIMIT = 30;
    private var _timer:Text;
    private var _score:Int;

    override private function _init():Void
    {
        super._init();
        isPauseable = true;
        isSessionSavedOnNext = true;
        _session.isWin = false;
        var l_textStyle = _kernel.factory.createTextStyle( ETextStyle.SUBHEAD );
        #if js
        // for js performance boost (realtime filters very constly)
        l_textStyle.filters = [];
        l_textStyle.color = 0x020382;
        #end
        _timer = new Text( _kernel, _kernel.factory.width, 50, Std.string( 
_tools.convertAgeToFormattedTime( 0 ) ), l_textStyle );
        _timer.y = 70;
        addEntity( _timer, true, 1000 );

        _kernel.audio.stop( "MusicMenu", EAudioChannel.MUSIC );
        _kernel.audio.start( "MusicGame", EAudioChannel.MUSIC, -1, 0, .5, 0, true );
        for ( i in 0...10 )
        {
            addEntity( new Sphere( _kernel ), true, i + 10 );
        }
        _kernel.messenger.addSubscriber( _entity, EMessage.INIT, handleSphere, Sphere );
        _kernel.messenger.addSubscriber( _entity, EMessage.DISPOSE, handleSphere, Sphere );
    }
    
    public function handleSphere( p_message:EMessage, p_sender:IEntity ):Bool
    {
// trace( p_message + " " + p_sender );
        return true;
    }
    

    override private function _updater( ?p_deltaTime:Int = 0 ):Void
    {
        super._updater( p_deltaTime );

        _score = Std.int( _tools.limit( ( 1000 * TIME_LIMIT ) - _age, 0, _tools.BIG_NUMBER ) );
        if ( _score == 0 )
        {
            _gameOver();
        }
        _timer.text = _tools.convertAgeToFormattedTime( _age );
        var l_spheres:Array<Sphere> = getEntitiesByClass( Sphere );
        if ( ( l_spheres == null ) || ( l_spheres.length == 0 ) )
        {
            _gameOver();
        }
    }

    override private function _disposer():Void
    {
        _kernel.audio.stop( "MusicGame", EAudioChannel.MUSIC );
        super._disposer();
    }

    private function _gameOver():Void
    {
        if ( _score > _session.highScore )
        {
            _session.isWin = true;
            _session.highScore = _score;
        }
        _kernel.scenes.next();
    }

}

 

Ash Entity Framework

https://github.com/nadako/Ash-HaXe

This is a Haxe port of the Ash Framework a popular entity framework.  Unlike earlier examples, this is not a game engine, but may be an option as NME provides a great deal of the functionality you would normally require from a game engine.  That said, it is marked as PRE-ALPHA… that's pretty early on.  It's pretty active development wise but Haxe specific documentation is basically non-existent.

Status: Last commit 5 days ago.

Sample code from here:

 

package net.richardlord.asteroids;

import flash.display.DisplayObjectContainer;

import ash.tick.ITickProvider;
import ash.tick.FrameTickProvider;
import ash.core.Engine;

import net.richardlord.asteroids.systems.BulletAgeSystem;
import net.richardlord.asteroids.systems.CollisionSystem;
import net.richardlord.asteroids.systems.GameManager;
import net.richardlord.asteroids.systems.GunControlSystem;
import net.richardlord.asteroids.systems.MotionControlSystem;
import net.richardlord.asteroids.systems.MovementSystem;
import net.richardlord.asteroids.systems.RenderSystem;
import net.richardlord.asteroids.systems.SystemPriorities;
import net.richardlord.asteroids.systems.AnimationSystem;
import net.richardlord.asteroids.systems.DeathThroesSystem;
import net.richardlord.input.KeyPoll;

class Asteroids
{
    private var container:DisplayObjectContainer;
    private var engine:Engine;
    private var tickProvider:ITickProvider;
    private var creator:EntityCreator;
    private var keyPoll:KeyPoll;
    private var config:GameConfig;

    public function new(container:DisplayObjectContainer, width:Float, height:Float)
    {
        this.container = container;
        prepare(width, height);
    }

    private function prepare(width:Float, height:Float):Void
    {
        engine = new Engine();
        creator = new EntityCreator( engine );
        keyPoll = new KeyPoll( container.stage );
        config = new GameConfig();
        config.width = width;
        config.height = height;

        engine.addSystem(new GameManager( creator, config ), SystemPriorities.preUpdate);
        engine.addSystem(new MotionControlSystem( keyPoll ), SystemPriorities.update);
        engine.addSystem(new GunControlSystem( keyPoll, creator ), SystemPriorities.update);
        engine.addSystem(new BulletAgeSystem( creator ), SystemPriorities.update);
        engine.addSystem(new DeathThroesSystem( creator ), SystemPriorities.update);
        engine.addSystem(new MovementSystem( config ), SystemPriorities.move);
        engine.addSystem(new CollisionSystem( creator ), SystemPriorities.resolveCollisions);
        engine.addSystem(new AnimationSystem(), SystemPriorities.animate);
        engine.addSystem(new RenderSystem( container ), SystemPriorities.render);

        creator.createGame();
    }

    public function start():Void
    {
        tickProvider = new FrameTickProvider( container );
        tickProvider.add(engine.update);
        tickProvider.start();
    }
}

 

Please let me know if I have missed any!



Personally I am leading towards Flixel ( community size and maturity level ), but am going to take a closer look at the Awe6 engine first. If neither works for me, I will simply roll me own!

,

9. May 2013

While I was away moving ( of which I am mostly done… except the living out of boxes and having no internet parts… ) a new version of Blender was released.  As I am a big fan, even if I am two days late, I feel the need to report it.

 

So, what's in it for game developers?  Well, for most of us, not much.  Unless of course you are rendering your game in a cartoon style, in which case you will love the inclusion of Freestyle in Blender.

 

What is Freestyle?

400px Manual 2 6 Render Freestyle Demo mato sus304 cut01

Freestyle is a non-photorealistic renderer ( NPR ), that has been around forever like BMesh, but has finally been incorporated directly into Blender.  The image to the left is an example of an anime style rendering performed using Freestyle.

 

This is just one example of the type of art that can be accomplished with Freestyle, although probably the most popular.  You can also render using flat colours, create a more blueprint like result, etc.

 

From the Blender description of Freestyle:

Freestyle generates 2D line drawing from a set of mesh objects. Mesh vertices, edges and faces are used to identify feature edges of interest to artists. The detected feature edges are then transformed into stylized lines through a number of stylization options. Unlike Blender's good old Edge (Toon) option that only generates a raster image, Freestyle feature edges can be manipulated by means of geometrical information, for example by line length, angle formed with two adjacent lines, and distance from the camera. In addition, identified feature lines can be stylized in many ways, such as different line colors, alpha transparency, and line thickness. Straight line segments can also be transformed into fancy curves by adding random displacements and fitting to smooth Bezier curves, for instance.

You can learn a great deal more about Freestyle right here.

 

So, other than Freestyle, what else is new in this release?  Well, you can read the complete release notes here but a few stand outs are the new modelling tools ( Individual face inset, Poke Face and Knife Project ), as well as improvements to the Paint tools, motion tracking, node editing as well as the Cycles renderer.

 

You can download the new release for free right here.

8. May 2013

 

When I was three quarters finished writing my PlayStation Mobile book Sony implemented a 99$ annual fee for PlayStation Mobile if you wanted to publish, or worse, run on a physical device. This was an "awww crap" moment for me, as it shrunk my potential audience down massively. People that owned a PS Vita and just wanted to play around coding for it certainly weren't going to pay another 100$ a year! Worse, it made open source projects, like the Monogame port, just that much less likely to happen.

 

Fortunately today, Sony corrected this mistake!

We’re always looking to support new developer talent, so we’ve decided to waive the publisher license fee (€80, £65) for PlayStation Mobile, which means you can bring your games to PlayStation Vita or any PlayStation-certified device, free of charge.

Those of you who want to throw your hat into the ring of PlayStation Mobile development now have the perfect opportunity to place your game alongside popular titles like Haunt the House: Switch Galaxy and Beats Trellis.

 

You can read the entire post here.

Good move, now announce PlayStation 4 support and ill be absolutely delighted!

 

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Holiday 2014 sales on Steam loaded with Gamedev tools.
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Home > News >

23. December 2014

 

As usual Steam is having a holiday sale, but this year it’s absolutely loaded with game dev tools.

1a

 

Complete list (as of today) below:

*Note, some asset and packs are not included in the list.  

 

NameDiscountLink
Graphics Applications and Engines
Leadwerks Game Engine 40% Link
3D Coat 25% Link
Axis Game Factory 75% Link
Substance Bitmap2Material 33% Link
FPS Weapons Pack 33% Link
AGK2 app game kit 2 33% Link
Silo 2 60% Link
Clickteam Fusion 2.5 66% Link
Fuse 66% Link
Indie Graphics Bundle 40% Link
Substance Painter 40% Link
facerig 33% Link
Fuse Clothing Substances Expansion 66% Link
Substance Indie Pack 25% Link
Spriter 50% Link
MangaMaker 60% Link
MindTex 33% Link
RaySupreme 3D 50% Link
GameMaker: Studio Pro 60% Link
RPG Maker VX Ace 60% Link
World Creator 15% Link
Shader Tool 15% Link
Audio and Video Applications
Action! Gameplay Recording and Streaming 40% Link
Z3TA+2 50% Link
Liquid Rhythm 50% Link
Play Claw Game Video Recorder 30% Link
Audio & Music Lab 45% Link
G8 Dynamic Gate 50% Link
Music Creator 6 50% Link
MAGIX Music Maker 2015 Premium 40% Link
Virtual DJ 66% Link
Illustration and Design
openCanvas 20% Link
Black ink 55% Link
Substance Designer 4 40% Link
Art Rage 4 40% Link
articy: draft 2 SE 60% Link
LogoMaker 4 50% Link
Misc
You Need a Budget 25% Link
AutoTileGen 50% Link
Wingware Python IDE 30% Link
Movie Writer Pro 40% Link

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