Reality is a Game

Game thinking from Adam Clare

Tag: iOS(Page 1 of 4)

A Game About Game Ideas

My most recent game is out and you can get it now for iOS and Android! Game Design Improv is all about generating and pitching game ideas!

gamedesignimprovlogo

You can play it as a fun party game or use it to generate game ideas for your own purposes (as in for games you’re making). Inspired partly by Oblique Strategies, the game will help you conquer and creative difficulties you may have! Ok, maybe not all of them – but some. At the very least it can be used to get you out of whatever the equivalent is of a writer’s block for a game designer.

Game Design Improv screen

It’s an evolution of my One Game a Month game of the same name which I made two years ago(!). Indeed you can see the previous version and the most recent version in the screenshots below. It’s obvious the impact good art direction can have, and for that I must thank Samet Choudhury.

Original version of the game idea game

Original version of the game idea game

Game Design Improv screen of game ideas

Game Design Improv

From Wero Creative.

Generate game ideas like never before!

Have fun competing with others to create the best (or just hilarious) game idea! You can also use it on your own for some fun last-minute game jam ideas.

Game Design Improv is a digitized game design exercise which I use to quickly produce ideas for games in all forms. It’s all about quickly creating game ideas based on limited information in a fun way.

Use it to come up with ideas for:
– Video Games
– Escape Games
– Board Games
– Puzzle Games
– Any other games!

The way to play it is to use what’s presented on the screen in a short ~1 minute game pitch. Keep it quick and it works as a fun, quick, useful activity.

This started at Board Game Jam and has evolved into this app you see in front of you now. You really should download it as there is nothing to lose and everything to gain.

Wero Creative wants you to make games! Do whatever you want with the ideas you generate from this app – no restrictions!

Game Design Improv screen of game ideas

Get it now on iOS and Android!

Mobile Optimization Tips for Unity

Earlier this year Unity’s basic mobile licenses went free which is a great thing for indie developers. If you’re new to putting games on mobile with Unity you’re going to want to check out these tips.

Garden Knight Games has a good introductory blog post to getting your Unity game ready for mobile devices.

This article is going to focus on how to get your Unity game running as fast as possible on mobile devices, specifically iPhone but you can carry over techniques to Android as well. This is something I find a lot of people have issues with, their game running at terrible frame rates and not understanding why or what they can do about it! iPhone’s hardware isn’t that beefy which makes optimization much more important! Squeezing visual fidelity without suffering game play is the challenge.

It mentions the 3Gs iPhone quite a bit and I think it’s far to say that you can ignore that device flat out – particularly with the rumoured new iPhone coming in September. Key lesson from this is that directional lights on mobile slow everything way down.

Similarly, Paladin Studios has a post on getting your Unity game ready for iOS and Android using four tips.

1. Use The Performance Profiler

The first thing to look at when you want to improve the performance game is the Unity Profiler. It is a Unity Pro feature that lets you analyze performance bottlenecks. The Profiler is an invaluable tool. With it, you can determine where any framerate issues are coming from. You run the game on your target device, and run the profiler on your PC. When you launch the game, the Profiler starts pumping out performance data.

Here’s a quick video on texture optimisation and size tips in Unity 3D:

Finally, a general tip across all mobile games is scaling for the proper screen size. In this post, three options are outlined: scaling, letter boxing, or cropping.

(hat tip to r/gamedev)

Busting Myths on iOS vs. Android Development

At GDC 2013 Chris Pruett gave a talk on the differences between his company’s performance on iOS and Android. If you have 20 minutes to spare you can watch it on the GDC Vault or check out a write up on the talk below.

In his experience, the differences between selling on the platforms did not live up to the hype. THey noticed that their games performed more or less the same on both markets.

Myth #3: iOS users spend more money than Android users

There could be many reasons for this. iOS is more expensive so those users have more money. Or maybe because you have to put your credit card into the iOS App Store it’s easier to buy. Or maybe because there are extremely cheap Android phones those people don’t have money to spend. These all reasons seem to make intuitive sense.

People believe that iOS users will still spend more than Android users if the app is free-to-play with in app purchases but that’s not what they found.

Read the rest of the myths here.

Mobile OS Alternatives

In preparation for my talk tomorrow night at the MDOT event, I looked at some mobile related notes I haven’t put on here related to alternative mobile operating systems (OS).

Apple and Google have corned the market on mobiles thanks to their early leap into it and the creation of the App Store. Their success came at the expense of previous mobile phone makers and inspired an entire new market of apps. In order to get into the mobile market to the extent they have is a near impossibility (for now) but that hasn’t stopped people from trying.

Tizen

First up there is Tizen which is yet another attempt at creating a fully open source mobile OS to compete against Android (which is less like open source every release) and Apple.

Tizen to me looks very developer focused and personally I don’t find it all that inspiring. Still, I hope that they get some traction so we can see some nifty innovations. They have some big industry players like Intel supporting them.

Tizen is an open source, standards-based software platform supported by leading mobile operators, device manufacturers, and silicon suppliers for multiple device categories, including smartphones, tablets, netbooks, in-vehicle infotainment devices, smart TVs, and more. Tizen offers an innovative operating system, applications, and a user experience that consumers can take from device to device.

Here’s a video going into some details around Tizen:

Jolla

Jolla is young company that has already created a new OS called Sailfish that I do find inspiring. They are taking a very design-centric approach to the OS and really thinking about what the user wants and what the user does.

Mashable recently covered Sailfish and they have a good summation of why Sailfish matters”

Sailfish is designed to acknowledge that most people use their phones for several things at once these days. The phone’s home screen can be filled with up to 9 concurrently running applications. (Contrast that with an iPhone, where, save for things like playing music, applications are paused when a user switches from one to another.) And they can all be controlled without even “opening” them. Rather, each “application cover— which is a large rectangle on the phone’s home screen — has its own interface.

Mashable also points out their strategy of breaking into the mobile market is to go into China first where the competition between carriers operates differently.

Here’s a presentation on their Sailfish OS, you’ll want to fast forward to like the 8 minute mark:

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