Monday, April 9, 2012

Android, cross-platform development and touch controls

Quiet Please on Kindle Fire

Lately I've been working on getting my 2D game engine running in Android. I had been planning on giving Android a try for a while now, so when Unity released a free version for Android and iOS it got me to finally take the plunge.

I picked up a Kindle Fire, and had things mostly working after about a day. It helped a lot that I had already ported my engine to Unity. I did this mostly to use their web browser deployment for Ludum Dare releases - people are much more likely to play a game if they can run it in a browser rather than downloading an XNA binary. It also really helped that I had already done touch controls for Windows Phone versions of my games. Aside from getting the build and deployment process set up, porting to Android didn't really add many platform-specific development challenges.

"Quiet, Please!" is now running pretty well on the Kindle Fire. I have a few more little things to do, and then I'll release it on the Amazon Marketplace and Google Play.

Ascent of Kings Touch Controls

I've also been working on a mobile version of "Ascent of Kings", a little platformer I made for Ludum Dare a while back. Good platforming touch controls are notoriously difficult to do. While I wouldn't say my controls are great, I now have a touch D-Pad that feels pretty good to use. The gameplay in "Ascent of Kings" isn't very twitch, so I think it will work well enough.

 Overall, I'm pretty happy right now with the state of my 2D game engine. With virtually no platform-specific game code, I can now deploy for Xbox, Windows Phone and Android. iOS should be an easy next step - except for the fact that I need to buy a Mac...

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