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Post news RSS Trailer, MonoGame, and Gestures on Windows - Swipe Tap Smash Dev Update

Trailer, MonoGame, and Gestures on Windows - this and more in this week's Swipe Tap Smash Dev Update

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Update September 22nd, 2013

This week has been a little slow in terms of gameplay changes, but a couple big things happening at a higher level.

Version 1.1 Certified

Version 1.1 of Swipe tap smash has been certified by Microsoft for Windows Phone 7 and 8! I have decided to not release it right away, so that I can try to put some marketing behind the release.


Release Trailer

Part of that marketing push I want to make with the release of version 1.1 is a trailer. I've never actually made a trailer before, and haven't used much video editing software since highschool, many years ago.

I'm not willing to spend and serious cash on editing software, so I've been looking for free software. I ending up settling on Lightworks, which offers a free version with no time limit. I haven't quite figured out if the limited feature set will be an issue.

Here is a quick shot of the editor; just playing around figuring out how the thing works. If you are interested in the software, I highly recommend checking out this tutorial series: Lightworks Quick Start Tutorials. It's 10 very short tutorials explaining all the basics of the software.

Gesture Support on Windows

Since Swipe Tap Smash is written with XNA, I have had basic PC port of the game working for some time. This has made development a little easier, since I don't have to deploy to a phone every time. However, since the Windows version of XNA does not have touch support, that version of the game was kind of hacked together; tapping the A button would automatically cause the player to jump, as opposed the the Windows Phone version where you flick the player in the direction of the ball.

To make development even faster, and in the hopes of one day releasing the game on PC, I have implemented Touch Gesture Emulation on PC. Touch Gestures are things like Tap, Flick, Pitch, etc; all the things common to smart phones. I now simulate them on PC so I can play the game proper. I only need to deploy to my phone when I want to test phone specific features or verify that the game still runs there.

If there is interest in the feature, I will clean it up a bit and release it open source.

MonoGame

I have also been looking into MonoGame. For those not aware, MonoGame is an opensource project which aims to port Microsoft's XNA framework to additional platforms, such as iOS, Android, Linux, and many more.


I spent almost the entire weekend trying to get one port of the game working. I chose to port to MonoGame OpenGL because it is probably the simplest; not needing to deal with emulators and developer fees that come with iOS and Android.

I have to say though, after hearing some many good things about MonoGame, I was really surprised by how rough the process is. The Content pipeline in MonoGame is very basic, and extremely manual. It requires that you build all your art content though XNA and then manually copy over the files into the MonoGame project. From what I can tell MonoGame isn't really meant to be used in conjuncture with an active XNA development. It appears to be crafted as a one time porting solution. Meaning, once your game is finished, you then go through the grunt work of porting over to MonoGame. Not really what I am looking for at this point, since I plan to continue development of the game. I need to put some more thought into how to move forward with this.

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