GameSalad Textbook

13

Comments

  • PhoticsPhotics Member Posts: 4,172
    chosenonestudios said:
    Whatever you do, Don't do nothing!

    I'm working on my next app today. I'm taking a break from the book. I'm thinking that I'll return to the book project tomorrow. I think that it's a really good book, so I shouldn't give up on it.

    With the release of 0.8.8 - some parts will need rewriting.
  • QuinnZoneStudiosQuinnZoneStudios Member Posts: 452
    Glad to hear it as there are many like me who need the help ;)

    With that said, it's good to mix it up and take a break for a while. Also you still get to make progress on your games, so its a win/win!

    Might you be able to add the whole "save/load level" thing as well as remembering and/or unlocking levels?

    Thanks again and enjoy your book break.

    Mike
  • PhoticsPhotics Member Posts: 4,172
    MikeQuinn said:Glad to hear it as there are many like me who need the help ;)

    Yeah, the people in this community are great. It's an honor to be creating a book like this. I think it can be very helpful. Gendai Games seems pretty psyched about the project idea too.
    MikeQuinn said:
    Might you be able to add the whole "save/load level" thing as well as remembering and/or unlocking levels?

    I'm not sure what you're asking here.

    I do cover the save / load behaviors, along with the other behaviors. Also, achievements and unlockables are covered in Chapter #25 - High Scoring. I might switch that up though. There's a chapter called "fun" and part of the fun for a game is to give players goals, things to do.

    I'm starting to get the motivation back. It seems that iAds were a bit of a disaster, but I'm moving on. Maybe if book sales are strong enough, I can afford to upgrade to pro. HA HA! :)

    Also, I decided not to go back into hiding while I work on this book. Instead, I'm planning to visit this thread and give some status updates.
  • QuinnZoneStudiosQuinnZoneStudios Member Posts: 452
    Wow that would be really nice - have the book pay for Pro, lol!

    I think you have the save game, load game where you left off and unlocking levels covered from what you are saying.

    Too early to tell if iAds is a non issue or not. Best just to keep making games more and more awesome and worry about the add-ons later. I'm just happy we have iPad publishing as that's my initial focus.

    Cheers!
  • design219design219 Member Posts: 2,273
    Hey Photics, what would you charge to get a copy of the book in the state it is in? Now?
  • quantumsheepquantumsheep Member Posts: 8,188
    From what I've heard you've put a lot of effort into it, Photics - I'm sure it'll be appreciated by many here, and many yet to come!

    Keep going!

    QS :D

    Dr. Sam Beckett never returned home...
    Twitter: https://twitter.com/Quantum_Sheep
    Web: http://www.quantum-sheep.com

  • PhoticsPhotics Member Posts: 4,172
    design219 said:
    Hey Photics, what would you charge to get a copy of the book in the state it is in? Now?

    Heh, betas don't really work well for books. I haven't even gotten to the good parts yet, so I don't want to sell incomplete copies. I'm glad you posted about this though. It creates a sense of urgency, and that gets me motivated.

    Maybe you could be a beta tester of the new e-commerce system I'm setting up. Heh, someone has to be the first one to order.
    quantumsheep said:
    From what I've heard you've put a lot of effort into it,

    Heh, you heard about that too? I've been posting that message all over this thread. Ha! :)

    This is good stuff. I'm feeling better. I'm going to try and upload my new game tonight and get back to work on the book tomorrow. Meeting the July 31, 2010 deadline is still possible.
  • design219design219 Member Posts: 2,273
    FX: *whip crack!*

    Looking forward to it!
  • PhoticsPhotics Member Posts: 4,172
    OK, new plan... which is good for the book. I worked on my game yesterday, but it was specifically designed for use with iAds. To launch it without iAds feels like wasted time. So, I'm going to focus on the book. I'm going to try to make it great. That way, if the sales are good, I can afford a pro license.

    What is the hardest thing about GameSalad?

    I think my answer to that question would have been "optimization". (That's a whole chapter in the book. I learned a lot of tricks.) If there's something that's bothering you about GameSalad, post up here. If it's a topic that's not already covered, I might add it to the book. Heh, in 2-3 weeks, a detailed answer may be available.

    Anyway, enough rambling for now. I have to get back to work!
  • POLYGAMePOLYGAMe Member Posts: 3,470
    Definitely optimisation and math... I wanna learn all the cos, sin stuff instead of just copying from templates, watching it work and not knowing why. LOL.
  • POMPOM Member Posts: 2,599
    @photics
    ill definitely buy this book, looking forward to it!
  • iPhoneDevForMeiPhoneDevForMe Member Posts: 362
    POLYGAMe said:
    Definitely optimisation and math... I wanna learn all the cos, sin stuff instead of just copying from templates, watching it work and not knowing why. LOL.

    I'm sick of copying from templates and watching it NOT work and not knowing why!! lol

    Keep up the good work Photics!
  • QuinnZoneStudiosQuinnZoneStudios Member Posts: 452
    Heh, that's funny as I don't want to know why, I just want template cheat sheets so I can get on with my life, lol!

    Anyway, Photics, there is one other issue that's been bugging me and I've only figured out half of the answer. It's another thing that I suspect many will use once they know how, and it's this:

    I have my character moving and controlling the camera. I want to know how to move my background layers in the opposite direction (parallax effect) to my camera. However, as I'm using the camera box on my character, the camera only moves when he pushes the sides of that box. I only want my BG layers to move when the camera actually moves, not when the player moves.
    Therefore, the exact camera movement needs to be tracked, and some inverse number of that needs to be put onto the background layers at different amounts.

    I hope that makes sense. So if you think you can add that to the book, just that one thing - I've already got my $20 worth ;)

    Good luck with it. Glad to see there are many more besides me who will benefit from this!

    Mike
  • PhoticsPhotics Member Posts: 4,172
    POLYGAMe said:
    Definitely optimisation and math.

    Optimization and Math have their own chapters. These are very important parts of the book.
    p-o-m said:
    @photics
    ill definitely buy this book, looking forward to it!

    iPhoneDevForMe said:
    Keep up the good work Photics!

    THANKS! Comments like these are encouraging!
    MikeQuinn said:
    I hope that makes sense. So if you think you can add that to the book, just that one thing - I've already got my $20 worth ;)

    I am aware of that issue. Heh, I hate it, so I have to include it in the book. I was already planning to cover it in Chapter #23 - Pseudo 3D. Just to remind myself, I added a note about the scrolling issue.

    So far this morning, I went back and did some updating. The 0.8.8 update changed some things. Are people interested in daily updates, or should I just focus on writing?
  • design219design219 Member Posts: 2,273
    I'll second the math request.

    I've seen many references to how fantastic things can be done when you understand how to use sin and cos and the other mysterious math thingys.
  • QuinnZoneStudiosQuinnZoneStudios Member Posts: 452
    Updates are great to get, but only when you need a break or some feedback.
    I can't imagine how much work this is for you (plus there will no doubt be a deluge of support questions after the book is out).
    Hopefully once Gendai have gone through your book, they will push it too, as even though they see no direct revenue, it will increase the usability of their software and help with quality of our games.

    I think it's a win/win for everyone!

    Looking forward to it!
  • SethsAppsSethsApps Member, PRO Posts: 328
    Do you think you can spare 1-2 screenshots? I'm sure we would all love to see the book I'm very excited and you should offer pre-orders to the PDF and email them to us the day you release the book!!!
  • PhoticsPhotics Member Posts: 4,172
    MikeQuinn said:
    I can't imagine how much work this is for you (plus there will no doubt be a deluge of support questions after the book is out).

    It's hard! This project is difficult. I think the worst part is flipping between my PC and my Mac. InDesign is on my PC and GameSalad is obviously on my Mac. If I find enough success in iTunes app development, I might switch over to a Mac. For now, I'm putting my switcher box to good use.
    MikeQuinn said:Hopefully once Gendai have gone through your book, they will push it too, as even though they see no direct revenue, it will increase the usability of their software and help with quality of our games.

    Gendai Games seems pretty excited about this project. Don't misunderstand my ranting on this forum. I like Gendai Games. Ironically, that's probably why I rant. If I didn't like the company, and the work that they were doing, I don't think I would be posting here so much.
    SurgeApps said:
    Do you think you can spare 1-2 screenshots? I'm sure we would all love to see the book I'm very excited and you should offer pre-orders to the PDF and email them to us the day you release the book!!!

    I'm very excited about working on this book and I'm really looking forward to releasing it. I'd really enjoy showing it off. But for now, I'm not planning on releasing screenshots to the public. The end of the month is not that far away.
  • PhoticsPhotics Member Posts: 4,172
    OK, here's a quick progress report. I finally got past the "Behaviors" list. That was tedious but necessary. It's 28 pages long. I tried to create a more robust explanation of "Behaviors" than what's currently available in the software or on the wiki. I think I succeeded in that task.

    There are 34 behaviors + 2 pro behaviors. I didn't include detailed explanation for the two pro behaviors, as I don't have pro. I don't want to cut and paste from the wiki. This book is written from experience.

    Side note: I thought I saw the iAds behavior on the Wiki, but now it's gone.

    Also, would you like to see quizzes in this book? I'm adding one now. It seems like fun way to test reading comprehension, but I'm not sure if people would find it annoying.
  • SethsAppsSethsApps Member, PRO Posts: 328
    Good job, I really like that you are pushing this project and getting it out there. I know you have the support from me and many others so the best of luck to you in the sales portion. As of content, as long as you have in depth info and pictures on some of the harder aspects of GameSalad too I will buy the second you come out with it. Any more exact date in mind rather than the end of July?
  • PhoticsPhotics Member Posts: 4,172
    SurgeApps said:
    Any more exact date in mind rather than the end of July?

    July 31, 2010
    It's a Saturday.

    I have a lot more work to do though. Heh, I'd probably be more productive if I stayed off this forum, but it's too much fun. Plus, I can keep track of major issues.
  • PhoticsPhotics Member Posts: 4,172
    Today, I'm working on the Math chapter. I started it yesterday... ha... what an uphill struggle! The July 31, 2010 deadline seems less likely as each day passes. That's because I'm putting a lot of work into this book. While GameSalad is very simple to use, there are so many little details...

    Like True and False... I was researching this today. I didn't know that .4 is the same as True. I never needed to know that before. But for this book, stuff like that matters.

    I'm still fighting to meet the deadline.
  • reddotincreddotinc Member Posts: 653
    If you don't manage to get it done by the deadline, then just push it back. I'm sure we would all much rather something complete and wait a little bit longer :)

    // Red Dot Inc
  • firemaplegamesfiremaplegames Member Posts: 3,206
    True. Do your best to stick to the deadline, but don't sacrifice quality for it. Plus this book will greatly benefit future users of GameSalad. People that haven't even heard about it yet!
  • PhoticsPhotics Member Posts: 4,172
    reddotinc said:
    If you don't manage to get it done by the deadline, then just push it back. I'm sure we would all much rather something complete and wait a little bit longer :)

    firemaplegames said:
    True. Do your best to stick to the deadline, but don't sacrifice quality for it.

    Thanks for the feedback. I'm not planning to rush the book. It's one of my best projects ever. I don't want to ruin it by trying to push it out the door. I am still trying to meet the deadline though. I've been making major progress on the math chapter today.

    I think that this book will be useful for GameSalad developers. It has certainly improved my skills. The book is not just a textbook, it's an inspirational guide. It's designed to help motivate inspiring game developers.

    Hey firemaplegames, I'm interviewing developers and adding it to the book. This is totally volunteer, as there's no compensation, but would you like to be interviewed in the book too? You can include a link to your website, and some pictures of your games, so it could be good marketing for you.
  • QuinnZoneStudiosQuinnZoneStudios Member Posts: 452
    If there was a quiz, it would probably make me feel bad as I know I'd get so many of the answers wrong ;)
    The way I usually use these kinds of books is have a quick read through it all to get an overview, then look up specific index or chapters when I'm looking for a solution. If I have problem I'll dive right into that specific part. There may be some things I'll never need to know how to do of course.
    Anyway, if you do need to push the release back, you know we will all be fine with it. I'm learning it's best to "under promise and over deliver". Always seems to work, ha ha!
  • PhoticsPhotics Member Posts: 4,172
    MikeQuinn said:
    If there was a quiz, it would probably make me feel bad as I know I'd get so many of the answers wrong ;)
    Heh, don't feel bad. There's only one quiz right now. So far, it doesn't look like I'll be adding more.
    MikeQuinn said:
    Anyway, if you do need to push the release back, you know we will all be fine with it. I'm learning it's best to "under promise and over deliver". Always seems to work, ha ha!

    Well, there's one other reason why I want to finish. I'm starting to see some really good games here. I'm looking forward to getting back to game development, so I can create some really good games too!
  • synthesissynthesis Member Posts: 1,693
    Photics said:
    That way, if the sales are good, I can afford a pro license.

    Be aware that there are probably less than 400 GameSalad users currently.

    Gendai reported 800 games have been created. If you do the math...it doesn't seem like there are very many users...yet at least.

    Perhaps that will change soon.

    Good luck with the book.
  • PhoticsPhotics Member Posts: 4,172
    synthesis said:
    Be aware that there are probably less than 400 GameSalad users currently.

    WHAT?! Only 400?!

    I should give up now

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    ...or not. HA! While I'm not sure where those numbers come from, I am aware that sales would initially be low. It's OK. I wrote Photics: Revisions in 2005. The most copies were sold in 2009-2010. I'm a patient and determined man. I think this is a cool project to be working on.

    Plus, I like the people at Gendai Games. They are very cool about this project. They were surprisingly encouraging, in a time when the world was filled with a lot of negativity.
    Perhaps that will change soon.

    Good luck with the book.

    Well, I think it's likely that the cost of "Pro" will go down in price. And then, over the course of years, the community will grow. It's a crazy idea, but I think GameSalad should be sold in the Apple Store. Think of all the money you have to spend on Apple stuff to make GameSalad games...

    ...a Mac
    ...a developer license
    ...an old iPod Touch for slow testing
    ...an iPad for iPad testing
    ...an iPhone 4 for high res testing

    ...and then Apple gets a 30% cut (or 40% cut from iAds) on your sales. I think that Apple should encourage GameSalad and a book like this. GameSalad and a GameSalad Textbook should be on the store shelves.

    Right now, it's a crazy idea. It's nuts. Yet, I'm going to keep working. I like this project, I like this community and I'm optimistic about the future.

    Thanks for the reply. The general warning in your post is accurate. Yet, that very same warning is what's makes this book special.
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