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3. April 2016

 

Wave Engine, a cross platform C# powered 2D/3D engine I reviewed recently, just released version 2.1 codenamed Hammerhead Shark.

hh

 

This release brings several new features including:

  • New profile system.
  • Visual Editor Offline mode.
  • Project Upgrader Tool.
  • Spine upgrade.
  • TileMap upgrade.
  • iOS Storyboard support.
  • Static entities on Visual Editor.
  • Non-serializable entities.

 

You can read the entire release notes here.

This release actually happened earlier in the week, but my complete refusal to post any news posts of any kind during April Fools day delayed this announcement slightly.

GameDev News


16. March 2016

 

Xenko Engine, previously known as Paradox, just released beta 1.6.  If you are unfamiliar with Xenko, I have done an in-depth tutorial series here.  This release brings quite a few updates, so let’s jump right in.

 

Updates to Xenko 1.6 include:

  • addition of prefabs enabling reusable content easily
  • archetypes, essentially create new objects using the traits of another object 07
  • particles can now be created directly in Xenko editor
  • curve editor inside Xenko studio (currently particle only)
  • new graphics engine.
  • experimental Direct3D 12 support
  • improved OpenGL support
  • scripts are now components
  • event system for communications between scripts
  • game settings improvements

Plus several smaller changes, fixes, etc:

Enhancements
Assets
Engine
  • The KeyedSortedList now implements ICollection<T> instead of IList<T> and is more consistent with CollectionDescriptor.
Game Studio
  • Support for prefabs, add a prefab editor
  • Create derived assets and support property inheritance
  • Added a curve editor to edit animation curve
  • Layout is saved on a solution basis. When reloading a project, Game Studio will try to present the same layout and reopen all assets that were edited (this include scenes, prefabs and sprite sheets).
  • Add a confirmation dialog to enable saving newly created script automatically.
  • Add a confirmation dialog to enable reloading modified assemblies automatically. This is necessary for the script to appear in the list of components that can be added to an entity.
  • Physics gizmos are shown by default.
  • Preview of an asset can be displayed even if this asset is being edited.
  • Project folder can be opened in Windows explorer from the launcher with right-clicking.
  • Properties of derived asset are displayed in gray, unless they are overridden. In this case they are displayed in bold.
  • Rework scene initialization in the scene editor: the scene will be available almost immediately, and content (model, etc.) will be streamed in as soon as they are (asynchronously) loaded.
  • The entity fixup wizard has been removed. Now when an entity is deleted, all references to it or to one of its component is reset to null.
  • The gizmo and camera menus are now displayed in the top-right corner.
  • Entity hierarchy is synchronized (automatically expanded) with the selected entity in the scene.
Graphics
  • New D3D12 renderer (experimental)
  • New Windows OpenGL and OpenGL ES renderers (experimental)
  • Rewrote most of the low- and high-level graphics code to have better performance and better take advantage of new graphics APIs
  • Properly separated rendering in 4 phases: Collect (collect & cull), Extract (copy data from scene to renderers), Prepare (prepare cbuffer data & heavy computations), Draw (emit draw calls)
  • Introduced concepts of RenderFeature (entry point for extending rendering), RenderStage (effect selection), RenderView and RenderObject
  • Render sorting logic can now be customized (culling will be soon too)
  • Low-level API has been rewritten to match better new API: CommandList, DescriptorSet, DescriptorHeap, PipelineState, etc.
  • Introduced concept of RendererProcessor which are responsible for pushing component data to rendering
  • Many other changes, that will soon be covered in documentation
Input
  • Improved GamePad event management to resemble the keyboard API.
Issues fixed
Game Studio
  • Fix Scripts thumbnail generation during project launch.
  • Fix Settings window sharing columns layout with property grid ([#341](https://github.com/SiliconStudio/xenko/issues/341 (new window))).
  • Fix default IDE settings incorrectly reset to null.
  • Fix a crash occurring when duplicating an object quickly after selecting it.
  • Fix an issue with the message box incorrectly resizing.
  • Tooltips are always visible even if the control (menu, button…) is disabled.
  • Fix several issues with undo/redo.
  • Fix drag and drop of components into properties
  • Sometimes the Game Studio was not asking to save when closed with some changes in a project.
  • Fix some issues related to folders in scene editor.
  • Redo does not re-open asset picker anymore.
Graphics
  • Tangents generation was invalid and might have resulted in various swaps
Physics
  • Improved collision detection reliability
  • Fixed collision filter groups
  • Fixed enable/disable component behavior
Breaking changes
Graphics
  • Extending rendering is quite different from before. Please check SpaceEscape and other samples to have a better idea while we prepare documentation.
  • Many methods of GraphicsDevice have been split off into a second class: CommandList
  • Added objects such as PipelineState, DescriptorSet and DescriptorHeap to better match new graphics API
  • Game now contains a GraphicsContext which gives access to the current CommandList
  • GraphicsDevice.BackBuffer and GraphicsDevice.DepthStencilBuffer are gone. Use GraphicsDevice.Presenter.BackBuffer to access the actual backbuffer.
  • In addition to RenderContext, there is now a RenderDrawContext. Some methods have been changed to expect the latter.
  • ParameterCollection has been rewritten to be much more memory and performance efficient (data is now stored directly in buffers).
  • Transferring values from application to shaders and computation of effect permutations used to be done through various inefficient ParameterCollection overrides. This should now be done using RenderFeatures.
Physics
  • PhysicsComponents are now split into 3 different types (Rigidbody, Character, StaticCollider) which can be added multiple times to an entity.
  • PhysicsElements are now removed, including the Collider, Rigidbody and Character classes. They now are merged into the new components.
Known Issues
  • iOS on ARM64 iPhones encounter crashes after a few second. We are currently investigating this.
  • Sometimes duplicate contacts are detected by the physics engine

Full details of this release are available here.

GameDev News


15. March 2016

 

At GDC 2016, Autodesk have announced updates to the Stingray Game engine and MayaLT, a game engine and 3D application aimed at indie game developers.

Unveiled this week at Game Developers Conference (GDC) 2016, Stingray v1.2 adds support for new VR platforms and improvements that speed up common tasks within the engine. Maya LT Extension 3, coupled with Stingray v1.2, integrates several modeling, UV creation, rigging and animation improvements, and includes an updated exporter to simplify the creation of visually compelling characters.

 
Stingray v1.2 Highlights:
-- Expanded VR Support:
Compatibility with the HTC Vive VR Platform and Oculus Rift SDK v0.8.
-- Multi-core Compilation: Faster project and asset import with multi-CPU compiling.
-- Workflow Improvements: Entity support in story enables the shading environment to be animated with global illumination, fog, depth of field and more; a unit component editing tool moves, rotates or scales and animates sub-components of units; improved UI flexibility helps snap, move, or maximize/minimize Stingray tools independently of each other and use multiple monitors in development; and rendered outline highlights make it easier to find lost objects within large scenes.


Maya LT 2016 Extension 3 Highlights:
-- Rigging Advances:
New quick rig tool allows for the automated creation and placement of bipedal character rigs, while HumanIK support for up to five roll bones per limbs distributes model deformations during an animation.
-- Improved Modeling and UV Toolsets: New shape authoring toolset and shape editor as well as blendshape deformer and sculpting enhancements; a robust mesh mirroring command and expanded tool symmetry; a new brush-based Symmetrize UV Tool, multi-object support for Unfold and improved layout and auto-seam features; and poly modeling enhancements.
-- Updated Game Exporter: Users can now select objects in the viewport, create a named set with a single click and view it in the game exporter as an object to be exported; click-drag workflow facilitates scrolling through key frames in animations to choose the clip’s start and end times.

 

Stingray 1.2 is available for download today, while Maya LT extensions 3 will be available on April 18th, 2016.

Any interest in more Stringray coverage here on GameFromScratch?

GameDev News


11. March 2016

CroTeam, the makers of the Serious Sam games as well as the Talos Principle, just open sourced the engine behind the earlier Serious Sam games. It's currently Windows only, require Visual Studio 2013 or later and is under the GPL2 license (blah).

From SeriousZone.com:

Croteam has released the source code for Serious Engine 1 v.1.10 (a slightly modified version of 1.07 removing some depreciated features and making it easier to compile on modern computers), the engine that powered the classic Serious Sam games, over at GitHub! With it, you can add your own updates to Serious Engine 1 or even make your own executable for a mod project! To get started, use Visual Studio 2013 or 2015 to compile the code. Some features, such as MP3 and OGG playback, along with IFeel support, have been disabled, but can be re-enabled by adding the appropriate dll files. A set of resources from the classic Serious Sam games has been released as well, containing all of the models, textures and sounds used in the classic games. Most of the source is licensed under the GNU GPL v2.

 

The fact it ships with binaries is pretty impressive and uncommon in these kinds of releases. The GPL2 license however kills any idea of making a commercial project using the engine unless of course you are willing to release all your source code as well.

As mentioned above the code is available on Github.

 

GameDev News


10. March 2016

 

Torque2D, the open source 2D game engine created initially by Garage Games, just released an updated library for Torque2D.  This update adds several new features including:

    • Ability to set which SceneWindow acts as a listener
    • simplified playSound function and managing software
    • Doppler effect (from above changed)
    • audio debug mode (setDebugOn())
    • AudioDescription for defining sound characteristics
        new AudioDescription(MY_ADESC){  
           is3D = true;  
           isLooping = true;  
           ReferenceDistance = 25.0;  
           MaxDistance = 100.0;  
           }; 
        

 

You can read more about this release here.

GameDev News


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