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31. March 2020


At GDC 2019 Epic Games announced their $100M Epic MegaGrant program supporting among other things, open source efforts in the world of game development.  Prior winners have included Blender, Godot and ArmorPaint.  Today, the open source cross platform sprite tool Laigter has joined that list!  If you are a regular of GameFromScratch, Laigter may sound familiar as we featured it in the Summer of 2019.

I spoke via email and Twitter with the author Azagaya about his experiences with the Epic MegaGrant program and on the future of Laigter:

I applied to the Epic Games MegaGrant project in April 2019. About three month later, i recieved an e-mail from them, stating they would
need more time for reviewing the tool. This year I received another e-mail stating that my project was approved for the MegaGrant! It was a
couple month ago, but I didn't make it public until I revived the official badge from them.


The process was very simple. For the application, I just had to fill in an online form. They reviewed the project without any question or
notification. Once approved, they sent me two forms (one for taxes and another one for banking information), and a digitally signed letter. I
filled all the forms and signed the letter and send all the documents back to them, and that was all. People from Epic were always very
gentle, and helped me a lot if I did not understand something from the forms. They answered all my e-mails soon, and in a very friendly way.


The only problems I had were with my bank, because strict regulations exists in my country about receiving money from another country.
The process overall is really simple, and people from epics helps you in everything you need.

As to the near future of Laigter:

- Ability to preview animations with lighting. For now, only framed based animations are going to be supported.
- Brush for painting textures. You will be able to use textures from sites like https://3dtextures.me/ to paint textures into your sprites.
- Toon lighting preview.
- Theming support (dark and light themes for now)
- Ability to change display language in runtine (now, the language from your system is selected, if available)

Laigter is available on Itch.io and is open source under the GPL v3 license on Github.  Check out Laigter in action in the video below.  Congratulations on the Epic MegaGrant win!

Art GameDev News


30. March 2020


Today on Twitter, Pixel Vision 8 - a highly configurable and fully featured virtual console, announced that it would be free, including the pro tools during the current health crisis.

From the Pixel Vision twitter:

image

Pixel Vision 8 is available here, simply register an account and you can download Pixel Vision as well as all of the premium pro features.  You can learn more about PV8 and see it in action in the video below.  If you check out Pixel Vision 8, be sure to stop by Twitter and thank developer Jesse Freeman for his generosity during these trying times!

GameDev News


24. January 2020


Tiled, the open source map editing software, just released version 1.3.2.  Along side that release was a development snapshot with new features that will be available in the next release.  If you want learn Tiled we have an in-depth tutorial series available here.

Details of the 1.3.2 release:

  • Fixed initialization of selected layers (#2719)
  • Fixed stamp action shortcuts not being configurable (#2684)
  • Fixed the tileset view to respect the 'wheel zooms by default' preference
  • Fixed insertion position when using drag-n-drop to rearrange layers
  • Fixed displayed layer data format in Properties
  • Fixed repeating of export when map is saved by a custom command (#2709)
  • Fixed issue when multiple worlds are loaded that use pattern matching
  • Issues view can now be hidden by clicking the status bar counters
  • macOS: Fixed black toolbar when enabling OpenGL rendering (#1839)
  • Windows: Fixed context menus activating first item on release (#2693)
  • Windows installer: Include the 'defoldcollection' plugin (#2677)
  • Windows installer: Signed by SignPath
  • libtiled: Avoid inheriting Properties from QVariantMap (#2679)
  • docs: Added some notes to Python and JavaScript pages (#2725)
  • Updated Qt from 5.12.5 to 5.12.6
  • Updated Finnish translation (by Tuomas Lähteenmäki and odamite)
  • Updated part of Italian translation (by Katia Piazza)

As well as details from the developmental release:

Tinting Layers

Layers can now be tinted by multiplying their pixels with a color. This way you can darken or colorize your graphics in various ways without needing to set up separate images for it! The new "Tint Color" property is supported on tile layers, object layers and image layers, and is inherited from group layers.

Object Alignment

Ever since tile objects were added as a feature, their alignment has been inconsistent with the other shapes. Whereas a rectangle had its origin in the top-left, tile objects had their origin in the bottom-left (or even bottom-center, on isometric maps). While useful in some contexts, this inconsistency has annoyed many people over the years.

Now, a new tileset property specifies which alignment to use for tile objects using that tileset. If you set it to top-left, the tile objects will align consistently with the other objects. But of course you could also choose for bottom-center or center alignment depending on your needs.

Object Reference Properties

This change is a big step towards the Connecting Objects feature, which is planned for Tiled 1.4. You can now choose "object" as the type when adding a custom property, and the property will be interpreted as a reference to an object on the map, referring to it by its unique ID. A special dialog makes it easy to search for the object you want to refer to and the name of the referenced object will be displayed.

Tiled is available as a free download for Mac, Windows and Linux here.  The source code for Tiled is available on GitHub.

GameDev News


8. January 2020


BrashMonkey have just launched a Kickstarter campaign Spriter 2 Alchemist.  Alchemist is an extension to the upcoming Spriter 2 Pro 2D animation system that adds procedural content generation and animation support.  Existing Spriter Pro customers are offered a preferred rate when backing Spriter 2 Alchemist.  The tiers break down as follows:

As of writing the Kickstarter is about 10% of the way towards it $50,000USD goal with 27 days to go.  Full details of the features of Spriter 2 Alchemist are available on the Kickstarter page, as well as discussed in more detail in the video below.

Spriter is not the only 2D animation package available and we have covered a number of them previously here on GameFromScratch.  A run-down of free 2D animation tools is available here on DevGa.me, while we have done feature videos on Spine, Creature(video), COATools for Blender (video) and Dragonbones(video) if you are looking for an alternative.

GameDev News


7. January 2020


The open source 2D game engine GDevelop just released beta 84 of their 5.0.0 branch.  Major features of b84 are BBCode formatting support, dozens of new layer effects, improvements to the integrated pixel graphics editor and more.

New features in beta 84 from the release notes:

  • Add dozens of new effects for layers, and allow developers to easily create extensions bringing new effects.

    • See an (incomplete!) list of effects available on the wiki.
    • Thanks @Bouh and @blurymind for porting, trying and setting up these new effects for GDevelop: Black and White, Noise, CRT, Godray, Tilt shift, Advanced bloom, Kawase blur, Zoom blur, Displacement, Color Map, Pixelate, Reflection.
    • Want to add a new shader effect to GDevelop? Take a look at the explanations about effects here.
    • Support for effects on objects will be added in a next version
  • New object BBText (thanks @blurymind!)

  • Improvements in Piskel sprite editor (thanks @blurymind!)

    • Color index shift brush (useful for cell shading sprites)
    • Ability to source all layers when using the bucket tool
    • Palette transfer tool (apply the currently selected palette colors to the frame you are on)
  • Add an option to automatically resize game resolution to window or screen size. It's recommended to activate it especially for games on mobile phones.

Be sure to check the complete release notes for more details of the release.  You can learn more about GDevelop in our hands-on video embedded below.

GameDev News


AppGameKit Studio

See More Tutorials on DevGa.me!

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