State of GameSalad on 8-21-2013

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

Estimated Stable Build Schedule

Amazon in-app-purchase and GameCircle are in QA and being tested. No major issues have been found yet. Once they've received a clean bill of health, we'll push out version 0.10.4.

QA is still digging through our first release candidate for 0.11.0. A handful of blocking bugs are stopping us from pushing out the first release candidate. We're working through them as we can.

What’s New This Week?

1. QA is continuing to test the new Amazon IAP and GameCircle systems.

2. We're continuing to optimize the HTML5 engine for Tizen support. We've got two engineers working away on this problem to get it finished up soon. We've made some really good progress this week, but more to go! Current focus is on reducing the amount of garbage being generated to improve FPS hitching that's occurring.

3. We've got an engineer reworking our build server to make it quite a bit less awful. It's continuing to cause us ongoing problems and needs to be sorted.

4. The contract for async multiplayer is starting to get some movement finally. I hope to have more to report next post.

5. We've begun updating Windows creator to support Amazon IAP and GameCircle features.

6. We have an engineer implementing better Android filesystem support. This will improve how we load assets and access files on published Android games.

7. I'm working on getting together a forum page that shows our current roadmap and ongoing progress to give you an at-a-glance place to see what's happening.
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Comments

  • SocksSocks London, UK.Member Posts: 12,822
    Any movement on improvements to GameSalad Creator, I honestly think that's really what people are waiting for.
  • tenrdrmertenrdrmer Member, Sous Chef, Senior Sous-Chef Posts: 9,934
    Any movement on improvements to GameSalad Creator, I honestly think that's really what people are waiting for.
    What are these improvements you speak of that I'm waiting for?
  • MlabAppsMlabApps Member, PRO Posts: 79
    It's nice to see that GameSalad is gearing up for a big release. It is also nice to see that the wheels are now moving with Async Multiplayer!
  • tenrdrmertenrdrmer Member, Sous Chef, Senior Sous-Chef Posts: 9,934
    Im actually thrilled about async too. I have a couple games I'm mind already for that bad boy. just hope I can make them pan out. :D
  • Braydon_SFXBraydon_SFX Member, Sous Chef, PRO, Bowlboy Sidekick Posts: 9,026
    So glad to hear about multiplayer.
    Also glad things are in motion for a official release.
  • jorkosjorkos Member, PRO Posts: 353
    Is publisher still down?
  • ValanValan Member Posts: 405
    Just wondering if every week is too much.

    Setup and the start always looks bright and then things quieten down and fall behind as work gets done. Progress? yep things are cooking but no "new" news.

    I'd be happy with a regular monthly State of GameSalad with the odd newsflash when things are headed for a nightly build.
  • SocksSocks London, UK.Member Posts: 12,822
    edited August 2013
    Any movement on improvements to GameSalad Creator, I honestly think that's really what people are waiting for.
    What are these improvements you speak of that I'm waiting for?
    ;)

    Apologies if you thought I was speaking for you (I did stick the 'think' caveat in there).

    The things I'm referring to are improvements to the actual Creator itself, layout tools, guides, rulers, snap to grid when laying out a scene, duplicate / step and repeat, windows that retain their settings if you move focus, 'live' access to attributes, resolution to long standing bugs like broken frame rates, multiple decimal point positions when dropping actors into a scene, interpolation glitch, image importing errors, image deletion errors, image sequence order loss, organisational features like a folder hierarchy for assets, the ability to grab a large scene and move around it (like the hand tool in Photoshop), the ability to constrain an option+drag, the ability to zoom in and out of a scene . . . etc etc . . . basically modern tools and workflow you'd expect from an application in 2013, I'm sure you know the list, I'm certainly not the first to list any of these things, and there are many more.

    And all of this is without venturing into the exotic world of things like custom fonts, joints or layer control (etc) which I am happy to - personally - relegate to the ranks of the improbable, I am just talking about very basic tools / fixes that people have been requesting for years but they never seem to get any nearer.
  • darrelfdarrelf Member Posts: 243
    Thank you for the update as usual.

    The change in Creator that I'm desperate for is accessing tables on the left hand side of rules. I see this in the nightly builds but don't want to risk writing my game in progress using a nightly build.

    If this part is stable, is there any way to release this functionality in the next 0.10.4 release?

    Or is it more complicated than that?
  • TheFrogeekTheFrogeek Member Posts: 97
    @Socks

    You are right!
    You forget pixel collision, create a hit zone,...

    @CodeWizard

    I'm ok with new features, but creator must be improved!
    There are a lot of basic features that are not in GS,
    There are a lot of bugs that you have to fix before doing anything else!

    Actually I don't care about async multiplayer, for now I want to be able to work on my next game without rebooting GS because it crashed because I unchecked "visible" per exemple...
  • SocksSocks London, UK.Member Posts: 12,822
    edited August 2013
    You forget pixel collision, create a hit zone,...
    Yeah, pixel collision (or even just a selection of pre-set collision shapes) would be wonderful, but I'd categorise that sort of thing alongside custom fonts, joints / inverse kinematics, layer control, parenting / grouping . . . and so on . . . they are less basic work tools and more 'features', it's the basic work tools / environment improvements I was referring to.
    Actually I don't care about async multiplayer, for now I want to be able to work on my next game without rebooting GS because it crashed because I unchecked "visible" per exemple...
    Although I know a lot of people are interested in Async I share your general sentiment, I'd rather see the core tool stable, solid and up to speed, with a viable interface and luxuries like folders for images.

    Once you've generated a game with over 800 images in (literally!) you begin to realise that something as basic as folders would revolutionise your workflow.

    Mmmm . . . folders

    [starts dreaming of folders . . . . ]

    image
  • SnapFireStudiosSnapFireStudios Member Posts: 1,603
    The things I'm referring to are improvements to the actual Creator itself, layout tools, guides, rulers, snap to grid when laying out a scene, duplicate / step and repeat, windows that retain their settings if you move focus, 'live' access to attributes, resolution to long standing bugs like broken frame rates, multiple decimal point positions when dropping actors into a scene, interpolation glitch, image importing errors, image deletion errors, image sequence order loss, organisational features like a folder hierarchy for assets, the ability to grab a large scene and move around it (like the hand tool in Photoshop), the ability to constrain an option+drag, the ability to zoom in and out of a scene . . . etc etc . . . basically modern tools and workflow you'd expect from an application in 2013, I'm sure you know the list, I'm certainly not the first to list any of these things, and there are many more
    Hm, I wonder if that would fit as a signature... ;)
    - Thomas
  • KevinCrossKevinCross London, UKMember Posts: 1,893
    Everything @Socks said, and a better and more easily accessible layers panel would be lovely too. Taking 3 to 4 clicks to get to the layers window every time is re-dic! Even more clicks if you take into count that the layer trees are always closed when you do finally get to the layers panel.
  • The_Gamesalad_GuruThe_Gamesalad_Guru Member Posts: 9,914
    edited August 2013
    I have to agree with some of the points. Some of the features seem to be the cart before the horse. I get the amazon features but realistically I'd have rather seen that time spent on better android builds so performance is better which makes a game more sellable. I'd like to hear from @codewizard on how hard it would be to impliment some of the things listed for creator. As @socks said some of the simple things, like saving the custom view size preset and such. I'm wondering why the big push for Tizen, when it's not even out there yet? How about real HTML 5 output or at lease a better embedding system? I don't get some of these priorities.
  • RUPASRUPAS Member Posts: 823
    @CodeWizard we have some news about the possibility of having local notifications, it is essential for a player to know when it is your turn.
  • MillionairAppsMillionairApps Member Posts: 110
    I have to agree with some of the points. Some of the features seem to be the cart before the horse. I get the amazon features but realistically I have rather seen that time spent on better android builds so performance is better which make a game more sellable. I'd like to hear from @codewizard on how hard it would be to impliment some of the things listed for creator. As @socks said some of the simple things, like saving the custom view size preset and such. I'm wondering why the big push for Tizen when it's not even out there yet? How about real HTML 5 output or at lease a better embedding system? I don't get some of these priorities.
    Well said, as always I am all for new features but it just seems GS is trying to run before it can walk. You gotta have a stable android build before add new features for example.
    But then I think about GS two or so years ago and then I think any progress is a plus.
    But what seems to concern me is that GS then said they would be pushing out build more regular. It's been months and still nothing except they have entered another level of beta, a beta inside a beta, which concerns me a bit. But that my only issue so I just sit back waiting. :)
    Keep up the work
  • tenrdrmertenrdrmer Member, Sous Chef, Senior Sous-Chef Posts: 9,934
    @socks Well when you put it that way I guess you read my mind.
  • TheFrogeekTheFrogeek Member Posts: 97

    @FryinngBaconStudio said:
    "Some of the features seem to be the cart before the horse."
    @MillionairApps said:
    "as always I am all for new features but it just seems GS is trying to run before it can walk."

    I agree!
    The problem is this damned roadmap!
    I have a question about this roadmap:
    @CodeWizard
    When do you plan to fix bugs that we ask to be fixed since years and years?

    Maybe the roadmap shall be submitted to users (only the pro if you want), and the future objectives might be decided with the community.
  • jamie_cjamie_c ImagineLabs.rocks Member, BASIC Posts: 5,660
    I agree that I'd much rather see some of the overall 'core' updates done to Creator (both Mac and Windows versions so they don't break compatibility) and also more rich HTML 5 support (which sounds like it's in the works) than multi-player.
  • kinzuakinzua Member Posts: 554
    You forget pixel collision, create a hit zone,...
    Yeah, pixel collision (or even just a selection of pre-set collision shapes) would be wonderful, but I'd categorise that sort of thing alongside custom fonts, joints / inverse kinematics, layer control, parenting / grouping . . . and so on . . . they are less basic work tools and more 'features', it's the basic work tools / environment improvements I was referring to.
    Actually I don't care about async multiplayer, for now I want to be able to work on my next game without rebooting GS because it crashed because I unchecked "visible" per exemple...
    Although I know a lot of people are interested in Async I share your general sentiment, I'd rather see the core tool stable, solid and up to speed, with a viable interface and luxuries like folders for images.

    Once you've generated a game with over 800 images in (literally!) you begin to realise that something as basic as folders would revolutionise your workflow.

    Mmmm . . . folders

    [starts dreaming of folders . . . . ]

    image
    An absolutely high raised up hand for a .. +1
  • SingleSparqSingleSparq Member Posts: 1,339
    edited August 2013
    Whoa, natives are restless this morning...
  • EOSEOS Member Posts: 74
    You forget pixel collision, create a hit zone,...
    Yeah, pixel collision (or even just a selection of pre-set collision shapes) would be wonderful, but I'd categorise that sort of thing alongside custom fonts, joints / inverse kinematics, layer control, parenting / grouping . . . and so on . . . they are less basic work tools and more 'features', it's the basic work tools / environment improvements I was referring to.
    Actually I don't care about async multiplayer, for now I want to be able to work on my next game without rebooting GS because it crashed because I unchecked "visible" per exemple...
    Although I know a lot of people are interested in Async I share your general sentiment, I'd rather see the core tool stable, solid and up to speed, with a viable interface and luxuries like folders for images.

    Once you've generated a game with over 800 images in (literally!) you begin to realise that something as basic as folders would revolutionise your workflow.

    Couldn't agree more if I tried.
    And believe me, I tried.
  • natzuurnatzuur Member Posts: 304
    What @socks said. That and optimization of memory usage (via code cleanup or features).
  • shortwaveshortwave Member Posts: 29
    @CodeWizard any idea when stretch mode is going to be available in publishing?
  • birdboybirdboy Member Posts: 284
    edited August 2013
    Hey Community, hey GameSalad Team,

    i've been away for quite some time now but during all this time i've been using Gamesalad for a lot of prototypes. Over the last 3-4 months or so i've been working practically every day on a game which i plan to release in the coming months. I always wanted to compile and post a list of things i like and don't like about Gamesalad as some sort of feedback for the Team.

    @Socks has already pointed out a lot of stuff (not for the first time, i think i remember a list of bugs/obstacles he compiled some months ago) and a lot of users agreed with him. I just want to add my point of view which falls pretty much in line with his. So here is my honest opinion about GameSalad.

    First off: I love GameSalad. Its ease of use enabled me to start making games and i think that's the case for a lot of people here. There are many things the GameSalad Creator is doing right... it's so easy to understand the way actors and attributes work and creating a basic game logic - even if you never looked at coding before - is a breeze. Also testing your build and publishing it is wonderfully easy.

    But I have one glaring problem with the Creator. Fundamentally it hasn't been touched since I started using GameSalad two years(!) ago and i haven't seen any indication for this to change. There are some bugs but I've learned to dodge them so they don't really distract me from my work. What's really distracting me are the tons of work flow blockers. There's no getting used to them. They just stand in my way every time i work with GameSalad now. As long as you're only working on very small projects (like my first game Color Rush Ninja) you won't fight with them that much but if you start to construct bigger projects, oh boy, they will hit you hard. I'm working on a puzzle/skill-game right now and nobody would believe me if i told them how many days and weeks of work i've lost while building scenes. A few examples for work flow blockers are:

    - resetting of window sizes
    - loosing your current position inside the list of actors/attributes/images/sounds when you open an actor/switch to another scene/...
    - how cumbersome it is to change the position or size of an actor to a proper value
    - lack of grouping
    - how slow the creator is getting - even on a really fast mac (in combination with all the other problems this can drive you nuts)

    Right now it feels like this to me: for every hour i've saved while prototyping my game and testing its gameplay, i'm losing two hours working on the content and detail. I think that's not how it should feel and there could really be done something about it. You can't build great houses on sand, you need a strong fundament and from my point of view the fundament of GameSalad is its Creator.

    Now let me end this wall of text. I really love GameSalad and wish its team success and a flourishing future. I just think that it needs a shift of priorities.

    Cheers!
  • skottskott Member Posts: 172
    @socks couldn't agree more :)
  • DaveinpublicDaveinpublic Member Posts: 37
    @CodeWizard has a lot of cleaning up to do from the past. I would just say, @CodeWizard, we don't have a problem with you or your methods... take this sentiment as evidence of how strongly we want a some things out of the way. Specifically, windows remembering your place when you hit the back button, that affects us not only every day, but every minute that we use GameSalad. After a while, it makes a man crazy.. If there was a way to get that one thing done and out the door, even if it took all of your creative minds together for hours, everyone would forgive you for pushing some other features back, and we'd all be saving time as you optimize more things. We love GameSalad through it all, but you can bet this critical feedback is going to make future GameSaladers want to upgrade even faster!
  • ericzingelerericzingeler Member Posts: 334
    edited August 2013
    I agree that creator needs a serious make over, but would have to say optimization to the guts of our games take priority here. In the end, I'd rather have creator crashing on me vs my game crashing on my customers.

    There are some very annoying creator bugs I would like to see squashed before additional features are added. The constant crashing, non-saved view states and asset management are the big concerns for me.

    But, I have to say... @CodeWizard is doing a heck of job getting things in order. I was a bit worried about the future of GS prior to his arrival.

    Looking forward to v0.11. Expression editor on both side of the fence and the loop behavior are MAJOR!
  • brickamatorbrickamator Member Posts: 316
    pixel collision would be so powerfull. Also, grids and joints please
  • BananarchyBananarchy Member Posts: 11
    Alot of negativity above.


    The only bug ive ran into so far is windows creator still thinks that im working on "My Great Project". Even after I load my own project. Lol.
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