Hello, and a few questions

Hi everyone,
For a while I have been think about attempting to develop a mobile game on my own, and after recently playing a game that inspired me to actually do so I decided to go for it. About a decade ago when I was in high school I played around with the dev tool Game Maker quite a bit back when it was free. After looking at its prices I started looking around and found Game Salad, so far I have been very pleased with its ease of use. With my previous knowledge of game development tools I was able to figure out the basics and in a very short time have already set up most of the controls and mechanics for my game. I really like Game Salad's set up of setting rules with behaviors attached, it works very well. I have also looked at a program named Stencyl, because some of the titles I have seen from it look pretty impressive and there are some benefits to its pricing model although Game Salad has a great price too compared to most other programs I have seen. I am definitely leaning more towards Game Salad, I just had a few questions for everyone before I put a lot of work into a project wanted to avoid unforeseen problems.

I have heard rumors of Game Salad games running laggy or crashing on the iOS. Many of these however from posts I have seen on forums that were not super recent. My game is a platformer that I intend to have a good amount of enemies, and multiple different behaviors and power ups available for the main character. Does anyone see this as a problem for Game Salad to handle, most of the games that I am able to find on the app store made by GS do lag a bit, and also crash very often. However the ones I found haven't been updated in a while. The game's showcase on the website seems really out of date, it is difficult to find great recent games made by GS. Is there any example of great games, possibly platformers, that run very smoothly on the iOS that I could check out? Are these possibly just problems with previous versions of GS? Biggest thing is I don't want to put in a ton of work to find out it doesn't run well on the iOS. I do not currently have an ios developer account and didn't want to get one until my game nears completion, as I don't want to pour money into a project until I am confident I can finish it.

Also I had a couple other questions about development. Is there a good way in GS to have it recognize when a key is released? Or for it to recognize a key being pressed, not just already being down? In order to have my character jump when the key is pressed and not down, I just have a jumpready attribute that is turned on whenever the key is up and turned off whenever the key is down, while that is fine, there are many other actions that would benefit and key pressed or released rule and was wondering if there was an easier way to recognize that.

Also, when setting up a game for the iPhone it sets my camera height to 320, does this mean the game is 320p? Or is that just a GS number? Not sure if that height is pixels or not. If I want my game to be HD do I need to make larger scenes and the camera size 720, or 1080? Will that slow down the game?

Thanks for taking the time to read my post, any input would be great. I look forward to using this forum in the future and hopefully will have some work to display soon.



  • GM_PandagamesGM_Pandagames Member Posts: 228
    you can use the platformer template for free. it has great stuff. the AWESOME ones cost like 20 dollars.
  • GM_PandagamesGM_Pandagames Member Posts: 228
    except 50 mb of images will crash gamesalad. i tried it.
  • jamie_cjamie_c ImagineLabs.rocks Member, BASIC Posts: 5,734
    edited October 2013
    @erockross, Hi and welcome to Gamesalad!

    Let me try and address some of your concerns and questions. First off Gamesalad is certainly able to make games that run smooth and don't crash on iOS or other platforms. I'm sure you can find some that crash and run oddly but that is quiet possible the fault of the games creator and not Gamesalad. Just because a game is published, doesn't mean it's bug free! LOL.

    If you take the time to learn the engine and work within it's limitations (everything has some limitations), you should easily be able to create a game that runs smoothly and does not crash.

    When you are talking about key presses, are you familiar with Rules and Conditions in GS yet? You can easily set up a Rule to check when a key is pressed or not pressed, of course at that point you're doing keyboard controls and it wouldn't be an iOS game in that case.

    The dimensions GS uses for scenes and cameras is in pixels. So the pixel dimensions of the iPhone 5 are 568 x 320, which is the scene size in GS. To create HD graphics for your iOS games, also known as Resolution Independence in GS, you need to create your graphics at twice the size they will appear in the game. So if you wanted to create a full screen HD background for the iPhone 5 you'd need to create the graphic at 1136 x 640 pixels and import for use into your project. If you're interested I have a graphics and animation tutorial here:


    I hope that helps you out some.
  • Thanks,
    Do I only make the graphics twice the resolution, or do I also change the camera size and scene size to 1136 X 640? If the camera size is determined by pixels, won't a 1136 x 640 background in a 568 x 320 camera just be scaled down and no longer HD?
    And thanks for the input, yes I am very familiar with the Rules and Conditions GS. I understand checking if a button is pressed or not, I was wondering if there is a way to make a condition when a button is released, not just unpressed if that makes sense. The way I am doing it works I was just seeing if there is an easier way that I am missing.
    Do you know some of the common mistakes that make a game crash. All the GS games I have tried on my iphone 5s ios7 crash often when switching scenes. Is this possibly because ios7 is new and those games would run smooth on ios6?
  • By the way Jamie I think about week ago I found one of your tutorials on youtube for detecting when a player jumps on top of an enemy head, which helped me out in figuring out a lot of my controls.
  • brickamatorbrickamator Member Posts: 316
    Game crash because ios 7. Try CAT-ACLYSM. It crashes only when you spam fire.
  • Just tried it, pretty cool game, well made. But it does address my worries of crashing. Does the designer have any idea what causes it or how to fix the crashing. Is it an iOS 7 issue? Or are the particles required for the bombs taking to much memory. Is this a picture of what happens when you have multiple objects in one scene? Worries me a little wether or not I will be able to accomplish the game I want to make. Thanks for sharing.
  • jamie_cjamie_c ImagineLabs.rocks Member, BASIC Posts: 5,734
    @erockross, for the graphics you don't need to do anything special except create them at twice the resolution you want them displayed at in your game, GS will handle everything else behind the scenes. Also keep in mind that for the best image display you should create your images at a pixel dimension that is divisible by 4. So for example you'd want to create an image at 64 x 64 pixels, NOT 63 x 63.

    What exactly are you trying to accomplish with your button pressing? The button UP and DOWN has always met my needs. Is there something special you are trying to do?

    With the release of iOS 7 a lot of games, GS or otherwise are crashing so I wouldn't be too put off by that yet. Once they are all updated they will likely work better.
  • Jamie,
    For example I was think about having my character be able to do a triple jump, kind of like Mario 64, when if you hit the jump button right when Mario hits the ground his second jump will be higher. It would be nice if there is a way to recognize the moment a button is pressed and not just if it his held down at the moment. I can do this through having some attributes that are switched when the button is pressed and not pressed, and when the character comes in contact with the ground, and a timer indicating how long the character touches the ground, I was just wondering if there was a more effective way. Thanks for for the interest in my question.

    Also, could anyone point me to a great face paced game on iOS made with GS that runs smoothly. All the ones I have tired crash on ios7 and on ios6 that I have on my iPad. Although I have only found and tried a few of them. I understand ios7 not being smooth yet, but haven't found one that runs great on ios6, again I have only tried a few.
  • jamie_cjamie_c ImagineLabs.rocks Member, BASIC Posts: 5,734
    I see, I have a tutorial that contains a part on double jumping. It uses a couple Attributes as you mention to count the number of times the button has been pressed and limit the jump count. There are no timers however, if you want to check it out the link is:

  • tylerglessnertylerglessner Member Posts: 246
    You should check out Heavy Sword on the App Store. Excellent GS platformer game to look at! Costs $0.99 though
  • @tylerglessner thanks I see that it has a free version as well I will check that out first.

    @jamie_c thanks for the help, the triple jump I am doing though is on the ground, where if you jump three times in a row right as you hit the ground each jump gets a little higher than before. I found a way to do it that works, however it requires using a timer to make sure you have only been on the ground for a short time before starting your next jump. I think a great update for the future GS for precise controls would be to be able to detect the moment of a collision or push of a button, rather than just if you are touching something or if a button is held down.
  • UtopianGamesUtopianGames Member Posts: 5,690
    edited October 2013
    Welcome to the forums i started with Game Maker and released a commercial game with it called Bumps, i keep meaning to go and check out GMStudio as I'm still in contact with a couple of the guys that work for YoYo.

    GS is a very capable tool in the right hands with some stunning games on the app store as proof.

    My favourite GS platformer is Go Go Pixel.


    PS We have also made several very popular platform templates (see sig).

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