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9. June 2020


Currently trending on Hacker News, Gravity is an open source programming language that is designed to be embedded in iOS and Android applications.  Released under the MIT license, Gravity is entirely C99 code with the single dependency being the C Standard Library, making Gravity incredible portable.  It is also extremely light weight while still being feature rich, with a syntax inspired by the Swift programming language.

Details from the Gravity website:

Gravity is a powerful, dynamically typed, lightweight, embeddable programming language written in C without any external dependencies (except for stdlib). It is a class-based concurrent scripting language with a modern Swift like syntax.

Gravity supports procedural programming, object-oriented programming, functional programming and data-driven programming. Thanks to special built-in methods, it can also be used as a prototype-based programming language.

Gravity has been developed from scratch for the Creo project in order to offer an easy way to write portable code for the iOS and Android platforms. It is written in portable C code that can be compiled on any platform using a C99 compiler. The VM code is about 4K lines long, the multipass compiler code is about 7K lines and the shared code is about 3K lines long. The compiler and virtual machine combined, add less than 200KB to the executable on a 64 bit system.

The source code for Gravity is available here, with various editor syntax support available for download here.  Gravity was ultimately created to be the scripting language behind the Creo IDE for iOS and Mac development.  You can learn more about Gravity in the video below.

GameDev News Programming


23. May 2020


Earlier today, Krita just launched the first beta releases of Krita on Android and Chrome OS.  Unfortunately for now it only works for Android tablets and the UI still has many desktop requirements so it may not work as expected, at least without a mouse and keyboard attached.

Details from the Krita website:

Thanks to the hard work of Sharaf Zaman, Krita is now available in the Google Play Store for Android tablets and Chromebooks (not for Android phones).

This beta, based on Krita 4.2.9, is the full desktop version of Krita, so it doesn’t have a special touch user interface. But it’s there, and you can play with it.

Unlike the Windows and Steam store, we don’t ask for money for Krita in the store, since it’s the only way people can install Krita on those devices, but you can buy a supporter badge from within Krita to support development.

Install
Notes
  • Supports: Android tablets & Chromebooks.
  • Currently not compatible with: Android phones.
  • If you have installed one of Sharaf’s builds or a build you’ve signed yourself, you need to uninstall that first, for all users!

Do to the limited number of Android tablets and the massive size of some Android phones, it’s unfortunate a phone release isn’t also available.  Do keep in mind this is early access software, so expect all the bugs that come with that.

Art GameDev News


23. September 2019


Google have just launched Google Play Pass a monthly subscription service for applications and games on the Google Play store.  Google Play Pass is launching first in the Unity States and will cost $4.99 per month, with an introductory price of $1.99 a month.  Intended to launch for more than 350+ games and applications, you can see an initial list of known launch titles here.

There are details available for developers available here with more details available on the Android developer blog here.  Integrating existing applications is easy:

A single APK supports distributing your app in the Google Play Store and through Play Pass, so you can take advantage of both opportunities without spending a lot of extra time on development. All you need to do is integrate a few Google Play APIs to enable a seamless experience for Play Pass subscribers:

  • Paid apps are free for Play Pass subscribers to enjoy. Developers integrate with the Google Play licensing service to limit access only to paying users.
  • IAPs are free for Play Pass subscribers and can be unlocked automatically. No integration is required beyond checking the Google Play Billing API for new or removed purchases when your app starts and resumes.
  • Ads are automatically removed for Play Pass subscribers while continuing to surface for the general Play audience. Developers integrate by defining an IAP that removes advertising.

In terms of making money, here are the details we know:

Being a part of Google Play Pass’s curated collection of apps and games can help you attract new users who may not have discovered your titles on their own. Subscribers can find your content either through the new “Play Pass” tab or by looking for the Play Pass “ticket” badge that indicates apps and games unlocked with Play Pass. And the more value subscribers find in your title, the more revenue you’ll earn on a recurring basis.

In addition, for a limited time, we’re offering a low introductory price for Play Pass subscribers so that even more users will subscribe and discover Play Pass content. Google is funding this launch offer so that you can benefit from subscriber interest without impacting the revenue you can earn.

Exact revenue share details are unavailable.  Developers can sign up for consideration for the service here.  You can learn more about Google Play Pass in the video below.

GameDev News


27. September 2018


Today Google announced the release of ARCore 1.5 as well as Sceneform, a real time 3D framework with a physically based renderer for Android.  The 1.5 release comes with runtime support for loading glTF models, the ability to ID individual point cloud points, and a newly open source UX library in Sceneform.  In addition to the Android release, there are builds of ARCore 1.5 for Unity and Unreal Engine developers as well.

Details from the Google developer blog:

Today, we're releasing updates to ARCore, Google's platform for building augmented reality experiences, and to Sceneform, the 3D rendering library for building AR applications on Android. These updates include algorithm improvements that will let your apps consume less memory and CPU usage during longer sessions. They also include new functionality that give you more flexibility over content management.

Here's what we added:

    • Supporting runtime glTF loading in Sceneform
    • Publishing the Sceneform UX Library's source code
    • Adding point cloud IDs to ARCore
    • New devices (plus Chrome OS in the form of Chromebook Tab 10)

You can download the source for Sceneform here on Github, the code is released under the Apache 2.0 source license.  Unity developers can click here, while Unreal Engine developers should click here.

GameDev News


4. August 2018


Romain Guy, a developer on the Android graphics team, just released Filament, an open source Apache 2.0 licensed PBR based renderer for Android, Linux, MacOS and Windows.  Filament was designed to be as small as possible and with optimal performance on Android.


The renderer currently possesses the following features:

APIs
  • Native C++ API for Android, Linux, macOS and Windows
  • Java/JNI API for Android, Linux, macOS and Windows
Backends
  • OpenGL 4.1+ for Linux, macOS and Windows
  • OpenGL ES 3.0+ for Android
  • Vulkan 1.0 for Android, Linux, macOS (with MoltenVk) and Windows
Rendering
  • Clustered forward renderer
  • Cook-Torrance microfacet specular BRDF
  • Lambertian diffuse BRDF
  • HDR/linear lighting
  • Metallic workflow
  • Clear coat
  • Anisotropic lighting
  • Approximated translucent (subsurface) materials (direct and indirect lighting)
  • Cloth shading
  • Normal mapping & ambient occlusion mapping
  • Image-based lighting
  • Physically-based camera (shutter speed, sensitivity and aperture)
  • Physical light units
  • Point light, spot light and directional light
  • ACES-like tone-mapping
  • Temporal dithering
  • FXAA or MSAA
  • Dynamic resolution (on Android)

The Filament renderer is currently used in the Sceneform ARCore augmented reality framework.  Filament is exceedingly well documented and is a great read for anyone working on a renderer, even if you have little interest in using Filament in your own project.  The Github page contains documentation on getting started and the source contains several examples on how to use Filament.

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