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Round Up: Attention GameSalad Management - Part 2............

KiwiLeeKiwiLee Posts: 181Member
edited July 2012 in Working with GS (Mac)
To cut a long story short (Classic 80’s song by Spandau Ballet – Yes Google it). I spent a few hours, yes quite a few hours actually reviewing this thread and trying to determine what are the popular requests from the user base.

Why?

Put simply!

If the users are asking for features and GS are planning or delivering these features we have a user driven project on our hands. If that is aligned to what I need from the tool moving forward it is a good fit.

I read each and every post and tried to categorise them as loosely as possible. If they got too specific, for instance some people were asking for particular features by name, i.e. Facebook Integration or OpenFeint etc. I categorised these as “Social networking integration”. Another category with specifics was Ads and extending the current crop of monetisation options i.e. Android AdMod, AdWhirl and various other networks.

I believe I was fair to every post in understanding what the request involved, certainly Google got a few hits from me as I tried to understand a request I had not heard of “PlayerDuel API” as one example that ended up in the Multiplayer section.

Certainly an area of subjectivity on my part was on performance. Some people were specific in terms of “Runtime of game” or “Editor crashing” others were not so some writers licence prevailed in this area.

One more observation is that the thread spanned a couple of GS releases so some items started off strongly i.e. IAP but clearly slowed down as the feature was added. Others popped up later as a result of the new features and/or a change in the mobile game market space. I also missed some as I had no idea what the user meant. I’d say I captured 95% of the entries so am quite confident that the list is representative of the GS community at large. I did find if funny that some people were highly passionate with their postings and clearly forgot the one post and keep it to 5 choices rule - @LeonardDeveloper :-)

Anyhow, I simply took each item on each post and interpreted it (I really wanted to write Interpolated there lol, categorised it and counted it and come up with the following list of Top Twenty requests.

895 selections later and summarised as follows there were a couple of surprise inclusions from my perspective. I was pleased with the overall spread of the top requested features and some stood out heads and above the rest.

A few items made the original top twenty like IAP, Table/Arrays/Writeable Tables and Game Centre Achievements, however as of version 0.9.94. These are all pretty much delivered so I decided to only show what (I believe) is outstanding. This is great news as during the thread lifecycle GS have already implemented some of these features that we were requesting. These delivered features were tracking in the top 5 until they were delivered so GS is clearly listening.
In descending order.

20. Debugger/Performance Analyser – Ability to step through code, view attributes and code being executed, more details regarding performance of the application rules etc By code I am implying the rules :-)
19. Custom OpenURL/Web Connectors – Ability to access the web and web resources
18. Attribute Editing/Organising – Sorting, Searching, Grouping of attributes. Another highly requested feature was folders. I kept this separate as people were thinking about images and other game assets etc.
17. Multiple select – Ability to lasoo or Control Key - Multi Select actors. This could be combined with other features that were requested like Alignment Up, Align To etc, as well as delete etc.
16. Social Networking Integration. - This was a tricky one. Facebook was highly requested but there are of course other networks too. Also I was unsure if people were really meaning Friends and Multiplayer as evidenced in the marketplace with popular culture games like “Words with Friends” and “SongPop”. Fortunately Multiplayer (See 11) also made the list. Note, if these were merged then Social Networking/Multiplayer would have finished 4th and IMHO I can only see this trending stronger going forward.
15. Folders – General organising of game assets.
14. In Editor Zooming – 200% 300% etc to assist with placement of actors etc. (20 requests). 3rd most requested editor feature.
13. Stable Editor. – Lots of posts about crashing editor, stability, expression editor etc.
12. Other Ad Networks – In particular pointed towards Android and AdWhirl and AdMob.
11. Multiplayer - (See 16).
10. More iOS features. By far the most requested iOS feature for inclusion was access to camera however, text, email, push notifications, camera roll were also mentioned. I was surprised about the lack of requests for iCloud – i.e. None. Overall, this to me demonstrates that lots of people see the iPxx devices as their principal target platform at this stage. Push notification was just outside the top twenty on its own right.
9. GUI/Workflow – Lots of requests to improve workflow. Easily see Actor this or that. Window for this, improved back button etc etc Interesting what the merger project will provide going forward.
8. Video – This one surprised me. I calculated 36 requests with the majortity wanting to play video.
7. Custom Fonts, Fonts Editor – Clearly @TShirtbooth has an impressive following, I can see the draw now, especially more so with Tables and the ability to more easily localise games.
6. Custom Load Screens, Wheel designs, Placement etc – I am thinking that this means some sort of feedback for loading with a graphic etc rather than a custom screen as these are achievable.

Now we are heading into the top 5 requested items.

5. Improved editing tools – Snap to Grid, Gridlines and Rulers, Aligning with snap to grid (no doubt for tile and actor placement hugely popular. The are classed as productivity I guess and are similar to the GUI/Workflow requests.
4. Universal applications - Build once deploy everywhere. This appears to be a feature that has become a must as all the top apps are heading that way and further underlines the user push to iPxx devices at this stage.
3. Joints – Linking multiple actors. I was surprised by this but I guess my game focus is just different.
2. Performance – i.e. FPS, Stuttering, LUA Engine drop etc. Personally I think the LUA engine drop is more important than performance purely as i should allow GS to integrate more features in the future.
1. Collision shapes. Lots of choices and talk. It would appear that rectangles and circles are simply not cutting it for many. Plenty of talk about Box2D and its restrictions. Pixel collisions was mentioned a lot but that is probably overkill IMHO. Certainly polygon collision shapes is not too bad a deal, is it? If Box2D is causing issues then perhaps another library can be considered.

Some interesting items that just missed the list.
• Cheaper Pro – Well we all know that this was reduced from $500 to $300 during the lifetime of the thread.
• iPad Retina support (Delivered in .93 and fixed up in .94)
• x,y co-ordinates displayed in editor
• Plug-ins for developer to build extensions. GS could control the marketplace but this is a good area for R&D.
• Native xCode
• Autosave
• Apple GUI controls for general App building

In summary, GS appears to be tracking nicely and I am hoping that we’ll get a little more information coming soon via the Twitter session and roadmap announcements which have been thin on the ground in recent months. I understand the balancing act about features, promises and support issues and revenue generation. Looking forward to understanding what people might think is missing on this list and also what might be coming sooner than we think.


Thanks
KiwiLee

@LaurenSalad
@StraightSaladShooter

Comments

  • KiwiLeeKiwiLee Posts: 181Member
    @LaurenSalad

    re:Twitter

    As it'll be very early hours of the morning for me here in NZ could you possibly touch on a few of these requests and give an idea of .96, .97 etc
  • DanielDoeDanielDoe Posts: 307Member
    15. Folders – General organising of game assets.

    This is the simpliest thing I can imagine to improve, but still missing. It drives me crazy that I can't read full names of image files in my project. If I use multiimage animation I have to enter every image to check it's name (animation_1, animation_2 e.t.c)... just insane and makes work much harder.
  • The_Gamesalad_GuruThe_Gamesalad_Guru Posts: 9,906Member
    Why not just shorten the name..lol
  • KiwiLeeKiwiLee Posts: 181Member
    Aka pre windows95 naming conventions.
This discussion has been closed.