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2. March 2020

Buildbox is a “no code” 2D/3D game engine for Windows and Mac, capable of targeting those platforms plus Steam and mobile.  Nearing the end of 2019 Buildbox announced a free edition with the release of BuildBox 3.

Since that update they have also announced that the Plus tier of pricing is back and cheaper than before.  Details of that announcement:

This new Buildbox Plus plan will also feature easy export to iOS, Android, and Windows. Plus, AdMob and ironSource SDK integration. Although there are no in-app purchase or custom ads options, it’s a huge upgrade from Buildbox Free, without breaking the bank. You’ll be able to make professional-looking 2D and 3D games for only $9.99 per month or $75.99 per year. All of our subscriptions are set at a 1-year commitment, which you’ll be able to later choose to opt-out of or renew.

Buildbox Plus

Buildbox Plus Plan ($9.99 per month or $75.99 per year)

  • Customizable Splash Screen
  • 5 World Limit
  • Unlimited Scenes
  • Export (iOS, Android, Windows)
  • Easy Monetization AdMob and ironSource SDKs

If you’ve been wanting to upgrade from Free, but not quite ready for Pro, this plan is a great option. With Buildbox Plus, you’ll have access to the latest version of our software, Buildbox 3, which includes all of our no-code and low-code game building features from smart assets to nodes. You can create up to five different immersive 2D and 3D worlds to challenge players. There’s also 100+ preloaded assets in Buildbox 3 to help you quickly build out the levels or scenes in your game. And of course, there’s an option to drag and drop your own assets into the software to use as well.

If you are interested in learning more about BuildBox, check out our hands-on review in the video below.

GameDev News

1. March 2020

Today we are looking at ShaderED, an open source MIT licensed cross platform GLSL and HLSL shader editor.  We previously covered ShaderED back in July and a fair bit has changed since that release.  ShaderED now includes a full debugger enabling your to step line by line through your shader code.  Additionally ShaderED added a plugin API and now ships with two plugins.

One plugin makes it simple to import shaders from Shadertoy to ShaderED.  The other plugin enables Godot developers to write shaders using the Godot shader language.  Currently only CanvasMaterial is supported.

You can learn more about ShaderED in the video below.

GameDev News Programming Art

29. February 2020

Due to the outbreak of Coronavirus (COVID-19), with elevated fears of infection and quarantine, several exhibitors including Unity, Epic Games, Microsoft and Amazon all announced that they would not be attending GDC this year.  It was almost inevitable that the event itself would be cancelled or postponed, which is exactly what happened.

Details from the GDC website:

After close consultation with our partners in the game development industry and community around the world, we’ve made the difficult decision to postpone the Game Developers Conference this March.

Having spent the past year preparing for the show with our advisory boards, speakers, exhibitors, and event partners, we're genuinely upset and disappointed not to be able to host you at this time .

We want to thank all our customers and partners for their support, open discussions and encouragement. As everyone has been reminding us, great things happen when the community comes together and connects at GDC. For this reason, we fully intend to host a GDC event later in the summer. We will be working with our partners to finalize the details and will share more information about our plans in the coming weeks.

For more information, please visit our Frequently Asked Questions page.

From the linked FAQ come important details regarding refunds:

I am a current GDC 2020 paid conference or expo registrant - now the event is not taking place in March, can I receive a refund of my pass money?

If you are a currently registered passholder, you will be receiving an email about your registration status and any next steps regarding refunds, which conference and expo attendees will be receiving in full.

What is the situation with hotels if I booked through the GDC hotel website/room blocks?

Individuals who have made hotel reservations inside the GDC room block will not have to pay penalties or fees associated with their reservations. More information will be available early next week on next steps.

As several smaller developers are going to be financially impacted, are organizing a fund raising and relief effort for impacted developers.  You can learn more about the postponement in the video below.

GameDev News

27. February 2020

Hot on the heels of Quixel Bridge 2020, Quixel have just released Mixer 2020.  Just like Bridge 2020, Mixer 2020 has also been made completely free!  This version contains a massively updated UI, a revamped 3D brush system, the Smart Material system and most importantly, the ability to directly paint on your own imported meshes, making Mixer much more of a competitor to Substance Painter in functionality.

From the Quixel announcement blog:

The wait is over! We’re excited to share with you the first Mixer 2020 preview release introducing the first look at early 3D support.

This first release unlocks features for texturing single objects and restyling Megascans assets, with Multi-channel 3D Painting, Megascans Smart Materials, Real-time 3D Curvature, Material ID Masking, Seamless Texture Projection and so much more.

For some odd reason, all of the download links on currently point to the 2019 release.  If you want to try the 2020 version it is available for download here.  Windows and Mac versions are available.

You can learn more about Quixel Mixer 2020 and see the new painting functionality in action in the video below.

GameDev News Art

27. February 2020

Serif have released the 1.8 update for the entire series of graphical applications, Affinity Designer, Affinity Photo and Affinity Publisher, including the iOS versions (see Affinity Designer for iPad in action here).

Details of the 1.8 update from the release announcement:

Continuing with our focus on the professional workflow, our latest update adds some killer new features and improvements to the Affinity line-up, with something for everyone.

Convert and handle Adobe files better with Smart Object import in Affinity Photo and IDML import in Affinity Publisher, take advantage of the improved ability to share your work with collect linked resources, and output with confidence using the new preflight pro print feature.

Graphic designers will love the accuracy of our re-engineered expand stroke feature and massive improvements to our vector capabilities, while Affinity Photo lovers will be pleased to see the addition of manual lens corrections, much improved metadata handling as well as support for Nik Collection 2.5.

The entire Affinity suite of applications offer an economic alternative to Adobe’s line of applications without the need for a subscription.  If you are an existing Affinity customer, the 1.8 update is free!  You can learn more about the 1.8 updates in the video below.

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