If this is true, it seems that WebGL will really become the future technology for browser games, yay.
Sony Vaio with Windows XP, and I think it was about 8 years old. I used it nearly every day during these 8 years (mostly for doing work), and it was a great companion. I was surprised that it worked that long. Anyway, so I needed some replacement, and I shortly thought about buying some of those tablet PCs, which are currently so fashionable. But apart from surfing the web and watching youtube videos, what are tablets good for? They are made to consume media, but not to be productive, right? So I went to the computer shop, looking for a nice laptop.
Fast forward, I came home with a tablet PC. I bought a Asus Vivo Tab, and it feels great :) In contrast to all the other tablets I saw, this one has a real, hard keyboard which can be strongly fixed to the display, making this computer look and behave exactly like a real laptop. But it is still very small and light, and can be used without that, it's a tablet after all. It's not like this Microsoft Surface thing, which I worked with before, which isn't really fun to work with because of that soft keyboard. This one feels quite robust, and you can type normally with it. Thus, I can work on it like usual: Answer support request while I'm on the move, read mail, and so on. So far, I can recommend that thing. But I've actively used it only for a few hours, so let's see.
Note that I live in Austria, not in Cyprus. What the EU politicians did with Cyprus appears to have made some people really nervous, also here. And I think rightfully so.
There isn't much content there yet, but hopefully this will change soon. You can even submit infos yourself: If you are developing some game development related tool, library, framework or similar, you are free to submit news on there. I'm going to update this page from time to time to during the next months, let's see, maybe it will become useful.
Personally, I have lost overview of interesting and important new developments in the game development area. "There is this new library for developing mobile games available? Wow, totally missed that." I had this feeling a lot of times recently. Probably because all those game development pages don't seem to care much about those infos anymore, and tend to report more about business developments and similar. But maybe that's just my impression.
I even implemented an automatically updated RSS feed, and it seems to be valid with the first try: :)
So I'd be happy about some feedback. Try the website: GameDevNews.net, and submit some links to your projects, if you like.
irrKlang as audio library: I just uploaded irrKlang 1.4.0b, which includes some Linux improvements. Some developers of games which are using irrklang had a preview-build of this, and it appears to be working fine even for those who are being sold as Linux version on Steam. You can get irrKlang here. Happy programming!
The same AI behavior is of course also available if your publish your app as Android app, Windows .exe or Flash .swf file: It uses the same minimal amount of code on all platforms, so it runs very quickly everywhere. As most game "AI"s, there is a simple state machine behind it. Thus calling it "AI" is a bit exaggerated. In this case, the AI has just 4 high level states ("do nothing", "reach position", "attack item" and "die and stop"), and based on the situation, it will switch between the states.
In this CopperCube update, the AI has been tweaked so that it can handle obstacles better, and the user now is also able to set waypoints where the AI is supposed to go. Also, specify how long the AI should wait once it reached its target position is possible now. With this, it should be easier to create nicer games, I hope. But of course: The AI still can be improved a lot. And it is no comparison to the AI in modern games. But it is a start. :)
SearchCode? It is a nice little search engine for source code. Since Google CodeSearch has closed some time ago, I didn't use any code search engine anymore, because I didn't like the alternatives I tried. Their URL was to long or difficult to remember, and their UI was to complex. Today, I found SearchCode, and I liked it very much. So much that I immediately bought an Ad on their pages in order to support their work.
I also posted a link to it on /r/programming, as I sometimes do when I find or blog something which might be interesting for fellow programmers. Strangely, my post on reddit instantly disappeared. It's still linked in my user submission list, but doesn't appear on neither the 'new' or 'hot' lists of /r/programming. This already happened a few times before for me, always on /r/programming, not on other subreddits. Wondering if there is some harsh, strange censorship going on? Or is it just a bug?
Yes, that's right. Somehow people need to get to know about the existence of your product. If they don't visit your website, you won't get any money. If you don't do marketing, you won't sell your stuff, simple as that.
For a programmer, this is hard. Marketing isn't easy. I would even say that marketing is more difficult than programming:
- You can create a beautiful website. Do some SEO. Hope that lots of people will find your product by themselves. But it is likely that this isn't enough: There are millions of websites out there. Some of them are your direct competition. They are longer there, have more experience, higher page rank and similar. Have fun trying to be better than them. It won't be easy.
- You can buy ads. Ads are nice, and they work. Right? Did you recently look at the prices of Google Adwords ads? About 5 years ago, you would pay about 6 cents per click (depending on the keywords of course). Today, this is about 60 cents. Per click. Which means if one visitor out of 100 buys your product, your product needs at least to cost 60€ so that your ad campaign isn't a loss. And be prepared that you probably waste thousands of Euros in the first months while you are trying to figure out how to tweak your ad settings so that it starts working at all.
- Did you ever design an ad? An ad that is interesting, not overloaden and actually gets read and noticed by the right people? This is not easy. Take one of my products, CopperCube for example: This thing - in version 4 - now has about 60 major features. The more they get, the more complicated it is to express what the product does in one single, small ad text. You can see my latest try on the right side of this blog (if you are reading the comments). If you see anonther ad, hit 'refresh' in your browser a few times. I had about 30 revisions of this ad. And I still think it sucks.
- Once you have your ad and found out a few websites where to advertise, don't expect that to be easy. You might assume that if you are willing to pay a lot of money to some internet website, they will take it with thanks and roll out the red carpet for you. Wrong: You are small. If you think a budget of 1000 or maybe 10000 euros is big, then think again. Be prepared that some websites won't even answer your mails. Although you want to give them money. Crazy, right? There are many, very big companies out there, and spending 100.000 euros a month for an internet ad means nothing to them. You have no chance competing with that. Another, specific example: Try to place an ad on the popular social news website reddit. You are lucky if your are living in the United States, then it will work. For all the other people, it won't work: They don't accept credit cards from non-US countries. Ridiculous? Yes.
Shameless marketing plug: try WebsitePainter, my web editor. Or CopperCube, my WebGL editor.