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State of GameSalad on 5-8-2013

CodeWizardCodeWizard Posts: 1,143Key Master, Head Chef, Executive Chef, Member, PRO GameSalad Employee
edited May 2013 in GameSalad Kitchen
Hello! It's that time again... time for another weekly state of GameSalad post. Massive brain dump incoming!

Estimated Stable Build Schedule

0.10.3: This build is now live. We’re still working through some issues with UDID references on iOS games. We should have that resolved soon.

We may release another binary update or two this coming week. Nothing is planned at this point, but we may find reasons to do so. Our main focus will be getting nightly builds out to you.

Pending Updates

1. We’ve done an initial optimization pass on some of the Lua code. Especially related to how we compute delta times in the iOS engine. Should help improve general performance. [ETA: Nightly Build]

2. An optimization pass has been completed for OpenGL 2 rendering. This should help out performance in several cases, especially particles. [ETA: Nightly Build]

3. We’ve optimized some Lua memory footprint code that has the potential to shave megabytes off of your game’s memory size. At least it’s shaved some MBs off of my test cases. This was mostly done by optionally allocating some objects that were previously allocated all the time. [ETA: Nightly Build]

4. We removed the publishing fireworks sound effect. [ETA: Nightly Build]

5. We’ve addressed some of the Creator stuttering related to looking for Android ADB installations. [ETA: Nightly Build]

What We're Working On

1. We're continuing to profile the game engine looking for CPU bottlenecks and RAM hogs. We're continuing to identify places that should receive immediate optimization. This effort will continue for the foreseeable future. This is my main engineering focus for now.

2. An engineer is currently reworking how we load images to improve performance. Initial estimates are we should be able to reduce image load times by a minimum of 50%. Good progress is being made, still no clear ETA yet but it’s getting closer!

3. An engineer is currently reworking our sound file support in the Creator and engine. We’ll be opening up support for WAV files as well as OGG. Choosing WAV will decrease load times for your sound effects but increase the size of your app. We have a basic implementation of this in place and will be finalizing it over the next week.

4. We're still working on getting the new nightly build process in place for Pro users. We have some creator changes we want to get in place before releasing this to you guys. These changes will help ensure that you won't accidentally corrupt your game projects when working with nightly builds. Once this is complete, we'll roll nightly builds out to line cooks and sous chefs to make sure all is well. Once everything looks good, we'll open it up to all Pro users. All of the work is done for this. [ETA: line cooks & sous chefs tomorrow, with general Pro release soon after]

5. We're putting the finishing code touches on supporting a new publishing platform called “Tizen.” This will be in QA for a while. You’ve likely seen the press releases and whatnot for this. We’re super excited about the opportunity this will give you to increase your app exposure!

6. We're wrapping up the major Mac Creator improvement pass. These improvements will greatly enhance the stability and performance of the Mac Creator. We'll be rolling this out to all Pro users for feedback once the nightly build process is ready for use. We’ve reduced the number of engineers working on this to one so that more optimization tasks could be started. [ETA: Nightly Build]

7. We have an engineer doing an optimization pass on the HTML5 and Lua engines. This should help improve general performance of both engines. Lots of good progress has been made on this over the past week. This work will be continuing for the next week or three.

8. We’re working to improve our app publishing test procedures. We need to have a better way to test publishing to the Apple app store before submitting changes to you guys. We should have something worked out on this soon.

What's Coming Down The Pipe

Our primary focus will remain code cleanup, bug fixing and engine optimization for the next several weeks. Once we're satisfied with where the core engine is at, we'll begin turning our attention to new feature development and additional platform support.

The top things on my list are: creator workflow improvements, custom fonts, automated texture atlas support, improved render batching, Android IAP and async multiplayer support. Some other odds and ends may come up first as necessary, but those are the main points I'll be pressing for. ETA of those features is not available yet, but they're top on my list to tackle as soon as feasible. More news as we make progress on our existing workloads.

Nightly builds are pretty much ready. We’ll be releasing to line cooks and sous chefs for initial feedback and testing and day now. If all goes well, Pros should be seeing this soon after.

Summary

We're continuing to sweat away in the kitchen to get improvements ready for you. I’m still really looking forward to the nightly build process. There’s a bunch of stuff just waiting to go out to you once that’s ready. The avalanche is almost upon us! :)

Until next week...
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