State of GameSalad on 7-19-2017 (Web Version Semi-open Beta)

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  • adent42adent42 Key Master, Head Chef, Executive Chef, Member, PRO Posts: 1,867

    @AlchimiaStudios no set time frame, but we've been thinking that the native tools will be around for another year. To address some of your concerns:

    • The large project size problem is mostly due to server resource limits with Amazon Lambda (which I wasn't aware of when I created the import script using it). We'll moving off there so we'll be able to support all projects again. It's going to be part of the same effort to support app generation / publishing from the web tool which is starting this week.

    • Since we do app packaging (publishing) online, it means that you'll still get native engines publishing support in the HTML5 tool. We'll have to figure out a solution for desktop native preview, since browsers have more-or-less stopped supporting plugins, but we're already working on a way to use the mobile preview app.

    • While the underlying technology is HTML5, we're looking into wrapping the tool into desktop apps. This lets us share a lot of the same code-base, allows the interface to remain consistent across platforms (or not, but that'll just be a css change!), and make it possible to release to some platforms we haven't supported before (I really want iPad and Linux versions).

    Basically, we're gonna do everything we can to make the new tool a natural successor to the current desktop tools.

    The new tool will eventually work fine with most existing projects (I'm not gonna say ALL because some people do some funky stuff to their projects files), and until that happens, the current desktop tools will still be around.

    I hope that answers your concerns!

  • adent42adent42 Key Master, Head Chef, Executive Chef, Member, PRO Posts: 1,867

    Also, if you have a big project that doesn't import properly, then PM me the publishing link and I can try it out in the new tool. If it looks good, I'll put it up for you to play with. If it doesn't... I'll us it as a guide to figure out what to fix first!

  • AlchimiaStudiosAlchimiaStudios Member, PRO Posts: 1,067

    @adent42 said:

    I hope that answers your concerns!

    It definitely gives me a better picture of the overall transition and puts some of my concerns to rest. Thank you for the detailed response, I appreciate it. I'll PM you soon.

    Follow us: Twitter - Website

  • birdboybirdboy Member Posts: 284
    edited August 2017

    @adent42 said: Lots of cool stuff

    Sounds superb, I'm so pumped for the new editor! Still hoping we'll see a bit of Android love once this thing is ready. And an iPad version would be so freaking cool especially with the upcoming file browser in iOS 11. Would enable full app development on an iPad Pro!

  • IceboxIcebox Member Posts: 1,483
    edited August 2017

    The web tool's performance drops a lot when importing any of my projects. The preview works fine , the game runs smoothly 60 fps i think , but my problem comes with dragging and placing the actors on the scene , its choppy . The mouse cursor moves quicker than the actor while dragging making it really slow, the actor takes time to catch up to the mouse moving + selecting and de-selecting actors is also slow , and my laptop heats up. Is this a known issue ? or is it html5 limitation ? anyone else had similar issues with their imported projects ?

  • PhilipCCPhilipCC Encounter Bay, South AustraliaMember Posts: 1,390

    @Braydon_SFX said:

    @PhilipCC said:
    @adent42 When the final of the online version is released will there be video tutorials pointing out the differences and additions/omissions from the Mac and Windows versions, so us loyal old-timers can get up to speed quickly and be productive ASAP?

    I'm prepping a video that will introduce those transitioning to the new tool. It will cover the new UI, how it's different compared to the native tools, and also showcase some of the nice new features.

    That's fantastic... and if you are making them I'm reassured they'll be excellent. :smiley:

  • adent42adent42 Key Master, Head Chef, Executive Chef, Member, PRO Posts: 1,867

    @Icebox it's not an inherit limitation of HTML5 but it's an issue with the framework and libraries we're using for the layout editor and the desire to keep things synced as much as possible.

    When you drag, instead of directly moving the actor you drag, we're moving that translucent overlay and then syncing the actors to match the changes that happen to that overlay. So the movement of the "handler" sends a message to the system > which updates the coordinates of the selected actors in the game project > which then loops back around and updates nodes in that editor view. That round trip is what's causing the delay you are seeing.

    Why do we do this, you ask?
    1) It made multi-select and movement items easier.
    2) Attributes now accurately and simultaneously update during movement.
    3) We get instant online syncing for nearly free

    I have ideas about what to do to speed things up, but it's going to take a lot more custom development and decoupling from libraries we used to get this far, this fast.

    If you want to get a sense of how fast dragging can be, this is the rendering framework we're using: https://konvajs.github.io/ You can see there's no delay dragging the stars on their demo. We're hoping to get that kind of speed, or at least something close.

    This is definitely an area we want to improve on, but it's going to be a bit further down the list. Before we retire the native tools, but much after stuff like publishing, becoming feature complete, some android love, some more scalability work for the online servers etc.

  • DigiChainDigiChain Member, PRO Posts: 1,229

    @adent42 said:

    The new tool will eventually work fine with most existing projects (I'm not gonna say ALL because some people do some funky stuff to their projects files), and until that happens, the current desktop tools will still be around.

    @adent42 - This is my main concern as I have numerous projects all still performing well on the app stores, and I hope to maintain them into the future.

    When you say "some people do some funky stuff to their project files", what do you mean exactly? Are larger, more complex projects/games the ones likely to have issues? - or do you mean something else?

  • adent42adent42 Key Master, Head Chef, Executive Chef, Member, PRO Posts: 1,867

    @DigiChain mostly stuff around people who use third party merge tools and odd asset formats.

    The new tool is a bit stricter about everything having unique IDs and I've seen some projects where people "added" actors to their project by directly copy pasting XML and not updating IDs.

    Also projects that take advantage of our image and audio format flexibility might not work (I'm not sure whether browsers can play caf files, which some projects use for optimized loading) or cheat and rename PSD files to PNG to get them into the project.

    If your project is just big then it shouldn't be a problem.

  • adent42adent42 Key Master, Head Chef, Executive Chef, Member, PRO Posts: 1,867

    And by rename I mean some people literally change the extension on the file, hoping that turns it into the right kind of file :)

  • DigiChainDigiChain Member, PRO Posts: 1,229

    @adent42
    Ok, thanks. That's reassuring to hear.

  • ArmellineArmelline Member, PRO Posts: 4,957

    @adent42 Right now, there's no way for an actor to find the size of the image it's using. So if I change image and want to change the actor size, I need to pre-set the new actor size in the logic. Any chance we'll see self.Image.width and self.Image.height as possible attributes in the future?

  • adent42adent42 Key Master, Head Chef, Executive Chef, Member, PRO Posts: 1,867

    @Armelline that'd be an engine change, so not soon, but I really like that idea. So I went ahead and made a feature request for it: http://bugs.gamesalad.com/show_bug.cgi?id=1865

  • stragstrag Member, PRO Posts: 595

    'we're looking into wrapping the tool into desktop apps. This lets us share a lot of the same code-base, allows the interface to remain consistent across platforms '

    Thanks for the info @adent42 I'm reassured by this ;)

  • birdboybirdboy Member Posts: 284
    edited August 2017

    @ForumNinja was so kind to set me up for the beta!

    Unfortunately I can't use it, I'm always getting a dark overlay and an endless loading circle in the middle of the screen. Is there anything I need to do to use the editor? What I found out is when I reload the page there's a fraction of a second in which I can hit 'New...' which takes me to the New Section without the dark overlay. But after that pressing something like 'My Projects' returns the overlay and the loading circle.

  • ForumNinjaForumNinja Key Master, Head Chef, Member, PRO Posts: 545

    @birdboy Sent you a pm to help you find the error getting kicked back so we can take a look.

  • pHghostpHghost London, UKMember Posts: 2,302

    Having the same overlay problem as @birdboy

    @adent42 any plans to let the users scale the UI? I find that with the various panels open, it's a bit claustrophobic. For those with good eyes and retina displays, this would be great.

  • ForumNinjaForumNinja Key Master, Head Chef, Member, PRO Posts: 545

    @pHghost Looks like this is happening because Tan has started locking people out of the beta servers in preparation for the launch of the live ones. I'll pm you the new link to try.

  • MusicBoutiqueMusicBoutique Member, PRO Posts: 116

    @ForumNinja - hey would it be possible to get a link to try out the beta web version? Thanks!

  • Jeffm2Jeffm2 Member, PRO Posts: 93

    I and the rest of my colleagues are having huge issues trying to publish with GameSalad and specifically with our enterprise accounts. it has cropped up since the Sierra upgrade.

    Code Signing Error 1: /var/folders/j6/q5kdtf4n7dv9w2p0d2msz8q00000gq/T/GameSalad0/4/PediatricTooth.app: replacing existing signature
    /var/folders/j6/q5kdtf4n7dv9w2p0d2msz8q00000gq/T/GameSalad0/4/PediatricTooth.app: resource fork, Finder information, or similar detritus not allowed

    Any else experience this? Support, although very helpful, has not been able to help

  • ArmellineArmelline Member, PRO Posts: 4,957
    edited August 2017

    @Jeffm2 said:
    /var/folders/j6/q5kdtf4n7dv9w2p0d2msz8q00000gq/T/GameSalad0/4/PediatricTooth.app: resource fork, Finder information, or similar detritus not allowed

    Perhaps this will help you at least pin down the problem files: https://developer.apple.com/library/content/qa/qa1940/_index.html

    I'd also replace your certificate you used to generate your provisioning profile, and the pofile itself, if you haven't already. The certificate is where the problem possibly is.

  • KevinCrossKevinCross London, UKMember Posts: 1,893

    Is there any screenshots of it publicly available? Interested to see what it looks like.

  • Two.ETwo.E Member, PRO Posts: 596

    @KevinCross It looks Nice. Different than Windows and Mac versions. Attached is screenshot.

    Best,
    Two.E

  • IceboxIcebox Member Posts: 1,483
    edited August 2017

    I think the coding workspace looks more like the windows version than the mac. It gets confusing when nesting rules and behaviours compared to the mac version , everything is big. I got used to it but hope they give us an option to scale it down or change it in the future.

    Edit: loving the smart navigation option , makes it easier to toggle between actors

  • birdboybirdboy Member Posts: 284
    edited August 2017

    I'll add a compressed version of my opinion too.

    In general everything looks like it's off to a really good start. I love the look and feel of the interface and I think I prefer the web creator workflow over the mac one. Not having to open actors to set attributes for example is a huge plus. The autocomplete in the expression editor is a game changer for me personally. I swear this feature feels like it's cutting my development time in half. If this editor gets improved continually and the professional side of GameSalad gets to see some love (Android, .exe) there's a great future ahead for us developers.

    There's only one thing I really don't like about the web creator - EVERYTHING IS SO FREAKING HUGE!
    I guess the reason for this could be future compatibility with touch interfaces but on an actual PC or Mac where you have the precision of a mouse stuff is way too big (same thing on an iPad Pro with the pencil). There's an ridiculous amount of empty space everywhere and I find myself scrolling constantly in nearly every tab. But the worst offender is the logic tab inside of actors. A simple animation behavior takes up nearly 1/3 of the tab on my full hd screen. Thinking about developing complex and nested behaviors with these enormous logic pieces gives me nightmares.

  • pHghostpHghost London, UKMember Posts: 2,302

    @birdboy said:
    There's only one thing I really don't like about the web creator - EVERYTHING IS SO FREAKING HUGE!

    Agreed 100%. Hope there will be a possibility to change this. I get goosebumps when I see all the wasted space. I want more space for the actual content I am creating.

  • Braydon_SFXBraydon_SFX Member, Sous Chef, PRO, Bowlboy Sidekick Posts: 9,042
    edited August 2017

    Hey everyone,

    It's awesome that you are all enjoying the new tool - it looks like most everyone is happy they've taken a sneak peek!

    I wanted to just quickly respond to your comments about the size of the behaviors and rules in the Logic Stack. Right now, like you all have noticed, the behaviors are all very large and it's difficult to see more than one rule without having to scroll down.
    One of the goals with this new tool is not only to be able to use it on the web wherever you are but also to eventually have the ability to use Creator on tablets. As you can imagine, behaviors would need to be larger in order for tapping and dragging to even be feasible.

    Having said that, much like we have for the smart navigation, we will eventually have the option to enable a "pro" mode that will decrease the size of behaviors to allow for more real estate in the Logic Stack. Rest assured that is coming along with a bunch of other neat little things we think you all will really enjoy! Right now there are other more important things being added to the tool (like publishing), but the UI will be getting some love afterward.

    New tweaks and fixes are always being pushed so continue to keep an eye out for those! Have fun!

  • blobblob Member, PRO Posts: 226
    edited August 2017
                   SPECIFIC QUESTIONS ABOUT BACKWARD COMPATIBILITY
    

    @adent42 said:
    The new tool will eventually work fine with most existing projects (I'm not gonna say ALL >because some people do some funky stuff to their projects files)

    Some of us are very "funky", for instance, would a project using GS Scene Merger, (to get around the atrocious loading time), work in the html version?

    @adent42 said:
    The new tool is a bit stricter about everything having unique IDs and I've seen some >projects where people "added" actors to their project by directly copy pasting XML and >not updating IDs.
    @adent42 said:
    cheat and rename PSD files to PNG to get them into the project.

    How about the trick where one would rename a Jpeg into a PNG directly in the XML file to save room. Would that pose a problem?

    Thank you @adent42 for your time.

  • stragstrag Member, PRO Posts: 595

    @Braydon_SFX said:
    ...we will eventually have the option to enable a "pro" mode that will decrease the size of behaviors to allow for more real estate in the Logic Stack.

    What I was hoping to hear! I think 'pro' mode will be essential for the more serious users working on desktop PCs, otherwise you may risk falling into the same trap that Windows 8 did.

  • adent42adent42 Key Master, Head Chef, Executive Chef, Member, PRO Posts: 1,867

    @blob

    On GS Scene Merger, I don't know. Once I get a breather, I'll need some sample project to see if it works, but as long as it correctly updates the internal project IDs, things are all good.

    As for the JPEG trick, we're hoping to add JPEG support as part of the tool. For now, I had to remove it because the HTML5 engine blocks JPEGs for some reason, and I didn't want to dig into that while also busy finishing up the tool.

    Once I get that issue resolved, JPEGs will be officially supported again.

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