Flash Game Development Inter-web mash up: Nov 13, 2008
The latest in Blog entries and articles that might interest Flash game developers.
This time we cover a new online game creator; A new blog just about good games; An Interview With Game Jacket; Flash CS4 in the wild; Gimp Shop; Parallels 4.0 and FlashDevelop; Structuring your game with screens; The 7 worst verbs programmers use in function calls; How to get started in Flex with FlashDevelop and more.
A New Online Flash Game Creators
PlayedOnLine.com has a very interesting Flash Game Creator. Called the "D-Fender Engine", it allows the user to make action/arcade shooters. It includes the ability to upload your own artwork and sounds, as well a including a library of pre-existing assets. It seems to be very well done, but I keep getting exceptions when I try to test my game. It might be a flash player issue, as I need the Debug10 player to do Flex and this might be incompatible. It certainly looks like A LOT of care and time went into building this engine and interface. After the exceptions and bugs are fixed (if possible), a tutorial mode or set of how-to docs would also help.
MockingBird is another very very well made site dedicated to allowing users to create their own games. It is based around the idea of game kits and offers a wonderful array of games types that are easy to modify and create. It allows the user to upload assets, write a story, design the game, upload it to their own blog/site and more.
The Social Arcade, a face book app for making games is going strong also. Take a look at Rich's Photon Storm blog for updates. There is a $200K game design contest going on right now.
A New Blog About Good Games
Fusion is a new Blog by Samuel (EagleVision on Mochi) that is dedicated to reviewing good games. I like the idea of a positive blog that picks games that one likes, completely biased and then fawns over them. I have been doing it for years!!! I have read some valid opposition that points out a REVIEW should be as critical as possible to be fair to the player and the creator. I agree, so maybe Samuel doesn't call his postings reviews, rather they could be called the Fusion's Biased Selection Of Good Flash Games. That's exactly what I would do =)
An Interview With the Guys Who Run Gamejacket
FreelanceFlashGames.comhas posed an interview with GameJacket by Well Lartar (www.lartargames.com). In it, you will find interesting information on some new GameJacket features to be added this year like Leader Boards, Referral Programs and more
Flash CS4 in the wild
Jobe Makar (Elecrotank super hero) has a few new blog entries on his experience with Flash CS4. He bought it the day it came out and has had some mixed results compiling CS3 projects and with the stability of the installs.
Gimp Shop is an open source modification if the Gnu Image Manipulation Program (GIMP) that attempts to clean up and organize the interface in a similar manner to PhotoShop. Windows. Mac (X11), Linux, and Solaris version are currently available. The intention is to allow users of Photoshop to be able to move to GIMP SHOP more easily than GIMP, and also to allow users to follow Photoshop tutorials unchanged. I'm installing my own copy tonight.
Parallels, Virtual PC or some other virtualization software is must if you work on a Mac but need to use Flash Develop for Flex development. I was able to purchase the upgrade from Parallels.com yesterday for $46.95 (including 1 year download service). It took about 2 hours for 4.0 to churn through my current XP virtual machine and convert it to a 4.0 virtual machine. After needing to go into manual mode a number of times to answer Windows dialogs, it booted up fine. I then installed the new free internet security tools included, and attempted to test out my new FlashDevelop/Flex set up. The first compile did not work properly. For some reason the AS3Contenxt had set the Flex_3 folder to a folder that doesn't exist on my machine. After changing that, it worked like a charm.
Structuring your game: A Foundation and Screens
CheezeWorld's Colby has posted the first of what should turn out to be an excellent series on game structure. The first part is on creating a foundation and handling screen management. In this installment, he shows you have to build these three classes:
- IScreenItem - Anything that will be considered a screen, such as MenuScreen, GameScreen, etc...
- AScreen - An Abstract class which handles screen switching.
- Root - Our meat and potatoes of the foundation. Handles the "Basic" functionality discussed above
These will be the foundation for the rest of the series. Read the introduction to the series here.
The 7 Worst Verbs Programmers Use In Function Calls
Juuso Hietalahti at GameProducer.net provides are pretty decent list of verbs that that we all probably use or have used before to name functions.
Drastika's Own List of Flash Game Dev Links
Nov 3rd Edition
Yet Another HelloWorld In Flex (for Flash Develop)
I needed to install Flex in XP (OS X Parallels) this week to work in Flash Develop. All of the exact steps for creating my first tiny app are included Flex Files: Tutorial - Flex 3 HelloWorld in FlashDevlop
As always, check out Flashgameblogs.com for your daily dose.