Thursday, 13 November 2014

We need this feature in XCode simulator

Was watching this video from Microsoft  by Daniel Moth about the new "Visual Studio Emulator for Android". Quite impressed by the way you can drag the red dot and move your device in different direction/angle in the simulated 3D space and the application running on the device will receive relevant data accordingly. We need this feature in XCode!!


Thursday, 6 November 2014

Have you integrated Everyplay to your SpriteKit game yet?

Was wondering around on the net looking for ideas a few days ago, and accidentally saw this "Everyplay Github" page talking about "Add SpriteKit example for iOS SDK 1.7.5" - this is definitely something new to me. Remember back in mid February this year, in this post I wrote about Everyplay supports Cocos2D and Unity, but not SpriteKit yet, looks like this has changed!

I downloaded the iOS sample, which is basically the basic SpriteKit with spinning spaceship example from Apple plus the Everyplay SDK installed. Although a bit old (last updated mid May 2014), it works quite well. I was able to record the whole game play, even played around with the iOS only "Facecam" function - as shown below, users can record themselves using the front-facing camera, which is a very interesting and handy feature for game reviews.


First integration with EveryPlay
After some study of the iOS example, I quickly integrated Everyplay with my SpriteKit based Open Source Piano Tiles game, and it only took me around 20 min, which is amazingly quick and simple! I quickly uploaded a short video as below:

https://everyplay.com/users/19215547

Sound Issue
Wait, Huston we have a problem. How come there's no sound? What's the point of a "Piano Tiles" game without any sound??!! 

I tried another game and this time the background music was correctly recorded. Sound effect was also recorded as well, but strangely only the first time it plays, after that no sound at all --- I am going to write another post on this, as it looks like a bug in the 1840 build.

Compared between the two, and found that the Piano Tiles game was using SKAction to play the sound/music, but the other game was using AVAudioPlayer. So may be Everyplay doesn't support sound/music played by SKAction?

[Update] - Sound Issue Fixed!!
Found that if I import the EveryplaySoundEngine

#import <Everyplay/EveryplaySoundEngine.h>

Then replace all SKAction with the "playEffect" method as shown below, then the music/sound get played and recorded correctly, issue fixed!


[[EveryplaySoundEngine sharedInstance] playEffect:@"SoundFileName.caf"];

How long it takes to process a video?
While analysing the sound issue, I posted my 2nd video using the iOS sample game and shared it. However it's over an hour now, when I view that page from my MacBook, it still says "The video is being processed".... Looks like have to wait a bit longer...


Where is the thumbnail screenshot?
As below, the FAQ section mentioned that Thumbnail "is automatically captured as part of the video recording", but I can't find info about how to get that Thumbnail from their web site. Also sent an email to their support mailbox but still haven't got an answer yet.

Documentation can be further improved
Other than these issues, also noticed it's very hard to find any info about SpriteKit on their web site. The "Documentation" section on their web site only contains a few pages, there's surely a lot things to improve for documentation.

Everyplay is an amazing, must-have framework for every iOS game!
Don't get me wrong, although I have been quite picky and listed out quite a few problems, compared with the tones of extra benefit it could bring to your game, it's definitely worth a try!

Most of the games can only post a few lines or simple picture on twitter, Facebook or email, with Everyplay, your players can post videos of the WHOLE game play, plus the Facecam function mentioned above, how cool is that?

And it's free! You don't have to pay a cent!

Everyplay is definitely an amazing, must-have framework for every iOS game! Highly recommended!

[Update 04/10/2015]

Please see my latest post about various sound problem with Everyplay in game with SpriteKit after they dropped "EveryplaySoundEngine"...