Pixel Game Maker MV released

After more than a year when it was first released in early access, Pixel Game Maker MV has finally released on Steam.  Pixel Game Maker MV is designed to create 2D games in both a top down and side scrolling perspective.  It provides all of the tools you need to create a game, as well as a ton of completed examples to learn from.

Pixel Game Maker MV is described as follows on Steam (where it is currently on sale):

Pixel Game Maker MV allows you to build up your own action game with no programming knowledge necessary. This engine was designed with the idea of giving a voice to people’s passions, allowing them to freely express the game that they have held in their hearts. Create the game that you want to play now!

Using only six tools, you can create the game of your dreams!

  1. Resources – Prepare and arrange image assets required for your game
  2. Tiles – Create “tiles” necessary for map field creation
  3. Objects – Provide characters and items with various gimmicks
  4. Animation – Enliven and enrich your graphics
  5. Scenes – Build stages using tiles and objects
  6. Transition – Connect scenes to bring your games into shape

Key Features:


An Easy to Use Visual Scripting System – No Programming Necessary
Whether you are a beginner or a seasoned developer, Pixel Game Maker MV offers a flexible game creation system, allowing you to plan, create and build an exciting game using the intuitive visual scripting system.
4 Player Support Straight Out of the Box
You can build your own multiplayer games with Pixel Game Maker MV without any additional programming or plugins needed. Create cooperative or competitive local play between up to four players.
Customize your game further with JavaScript
Pixel Game Maker MV supports the use of JavaScript to create plug-ins and perform actions not available in the Visual Scripting system. This allows you to create and customize your game without restriction.
Create Endless Fun with “Multi-Viewpoint/Multi-Versus”
Allows for both top- and side-based views, combine this with the multiplayer function to bring your game to a whole new level. Works with any genre, so the games you can create are limited only by your imagination!
A Simple Way to Create Rich and Beautiful Game Graphics
Using the graphic import feature, physics engine, particle effects, and multiple layer combination, you can create your own ideal game in exactly the way you want to make it, easily and without all the hassle.
Allows for Functional Expansion
You can use JavaScript to expand on and add to the pre-existing features. Master using these extended functions and add-ons to create even more complex and beautiful games!

When we first look at Pixel Game Maker MV, we were not impressed.  We took another look at it in the video below if you want to learn more about this release.

GameDev News


Massive AppGameKit Sale On Fanatical

There is currently an AppGameKit Bundle over on Fanatical, an opportunity to pick up this seminal game engine and a ton of content for an extremely low price.

The bundle is composed of 3 different tiers ( each higher level tier contains all of the lower tiers content as well ), broken down as follows:

Tier 1 (@ 5$ USD):

  • AppGameKit Classic Game Engine
  • Games Pack 1
  • Games Pack 2
  • 3D Asset Pack

Tier 2 (@ 10 USD):

  • Tier 1 +
  • Giant Asset Pack 1
  • Giant Asset Pack 2
  • Sound Library
  • Shader Pack

Tier 3(@ 20USD):

  • Tier 1 & 2 +
  • GameGuru Loader

I have covered AppGameKIt in the past including this closer look review, this video on AR in AppGameKit and this tutorial/introduction to AppGameKit Studio.  I also previously did this video on GameGuru if you are interested in learning more about the Loader included in the third tier.  You can learn more about this deal in the video below.  Using the above link from Fanatical also helps support GFS with each purchase, so thanks if you do so!

GameDev News


Bitmelo Pixel Based Game Engine

Today we are looking at Bitmelo, a free and open source browser based game engine for creating simple pixel art games.  It contains all of the tools you need to create a complete game including a graphics editor, map editor, sound creator and programming environment, all in one place.

Bitmelo is described as follows:

Bitmelo is a game editor and engine for making small pixel art games right here in your browser.
This editor has everything you need to develop a game in one convenient location.
You can code, draw tiles and tilemaps, design sound effects, view the documentation,
and playtest your game, all without having to break focus by switching applications.
Once complete you can then export your game as a single HTML file.

Bitmelo is currently in early access. Right now it has everything you need to make a minimal game,
however many more features are planned for the future.

The underlying JavaScript game engine is available on GitHub under the MIT license, while the editor is available in a different GitHub repository under a different license, described as such:

The Bitmelo editor is licensed using a source available license. This license
allows you to download the source for personal use, but does not allow you to
distribute it to third parties. In addition, three years after the
release of each version of the editor, that version is dual licensed to
use the GNU Affero General Public License.

In addition to being able to run it directly in your browser, you can also download the editor as an Electron application on Itch.io.  Learn more about Bitmelo and see it in action in the video below.

GameDev News


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Unity Release Render Streaming Over WebRTC

Unity Technologies have just released an amazing new package for the Unity game engine that enable you to stream a Unity game to multiple browsers, all synchronized, powered by the WebRTC standard.

Details from the Unity blog:

The power of WebRTC technologies lets you run Unity projects with high-quality rendering through your browser. The framework can be used in runtime or in the Editor, so it is useful for a variety of purposes, like running a car configurator made with HDRP or viewing an architectural model – projects that use high-end graphics.

WebRTC bridges the gap between browsers and real-time rendering

Developed by Google in 2011, WebRTC is open-source software that enables real-time peer-to-peer communication between browsers and mobile platforms. Any device can use Unity’s open-source framework for render streaming, so long as it’s equipped with the latest version of a browser that supports WebRTC. This includes all major browsers for iPad, iPhone, and Android.

WebRTC can be paired with Unity thanks to our app based on the Apache 2.0 license, which is publicly available through Github. This library is also available as a Preview release through Package Manager, to make it even easier to add it to your project.

The installation instructions are unfortunately lacking, missing a few key steps, such as the fact WebRTC isn’t actually available in the package manager nor what to do with the remote rendering archive.  Don’t worry they, we walk you through the process.

There are a few requirements though:

  • Windows Only for now
  • Current (very current!) NVIDIA drivers and a modern 1050+ GPU for the encoding to work
  • Unity 2019.1 or newer

Assuming you have all of those things, let’s begin.  First head here and download com.unity.renderstreaming-1.1.1-preview.tgz and com.unity.template.renderstreaming-1.1.1-preview.tgz.  Next head here and download com.unity.webrtc-1.0.1-preview.tgz(this is supposed to be in the package manager but currently isn’t).

Now we need to copy these folders into our Unity install.  In the Unity Hub, click Installs, locate the installed version and click the triple dot at the top right and select Show In Explorer.

image

In Explorer, navigate to \Data\Resources\PackageManager.

Copy the RTC and renderstreaming tgz files into the Editor folder, while copying com.unity.template.renderstreaming-1.1.1-preview.tgz into the ProjectTemplates folder.

You may have to restart Unity Hub at this point.  Now in projects, with the version you just copied the files to selected, create a new project and the template should appear:

image

Select Unity Render Streaming Template and create a project.  Once in Unity you will have to go to the Package Manager and upgrade to HDRP requested as well as enable InputManager (make sure you have show preview packages enabled to locate it).

You can see Render Streaming in action in the video below, with additional instructions on how to get started!

GameDev News


Microsoft Open Source Standard Template Library

Today at CppCon, Microsoft announced they are open sourcing the Visual C++ implementation of the Standard Template Library.  Available now on GitHub and licensed under the Apache License v2.0 with LLVM Exceptions.

Details of why Microsoft have open sourced their STL implementation from the C++ team blog:

Q: Why are you doing this?

A: There are several reasons. Working on the STL in GitHub will allow our customers to follow our development as it happens, try out our latest changes, and help improve our pull requests by reviewing them. As C++ Standardization accelerates, with more large features being voted in every year, we believe that accepting major features as open source contributions will be important. (For example, C++20’s chrono and format libraries are potential candidates.) We also want to contribute back to the C++ community by making it possible to take our implementations of major features. (For example, C++17’s charconv.)

If you’re getting your hopes up that this is the first step in open sourcing more of Visual Studio, don’t get your hopes up too high!

Q: Are you going to open source anything else in the MSVC toolset?

A: We have no such plans. We chose the STL because it’s different from other MSVC libraries and the compiler. Specifically, the STL is fast-evolving and designed by the C++ Standardization Committee, unlike other MSVC libraries. (Being designed by Committee is an advantage for open sourcing! It means that we don’t need to spend any time and energy on feature design review. Implementation strategy and tactics are far more constrained, and therefore easier to review.) The STL is also relatively easy to contribute to, and somewhat loosely coupled, unlike the compiler (where, as a general rule, everything interacts with everything else).

(One exception: there are support libraries for the STL that we may open source in the future, but we have nothing to announce at this time.)

You can learn more about this open source release in the video below.

GameDev News


Lumberyard 1.21 Released

Amazon have released a new version of the Lumberyard game engine.  This release includes 70+ features, changes and improvements.

Highlights of the release from the Lumberyard blog:

  • We continue to add new features and make workflow improvements to Script Canvas visual scripting to save you time. In this release, Script Canvas gets greater flexibility working with dynamic types, new comment and group presets so you can define color code comments and groups, and the ability to disable nodes so you can test different graph structures more quickly. We’ve also added three new nodes for increased functionality: Repeater, Switch, and Ordered Sequencer. (A few months ago we released the Project N.E.M.O sample to help you get started with Script Canvas. Check it out here.)
  • The EMotion FX Animation Editor can now dynamically simulate physically-based secondary animation for your actors. This lightweight solver provides realistic looking motion for items like backpacks, holsters, and even long hair, as your actor moves. Using the Simulated Objects node, you can adjust an objects stiffness, gravity factor, colliders, and more.
  • Lumberyard Beta 1.21 now uses NVIDIA’s PhysX 4.1. This latest version of PhysX boasts increased performance, stability, and accuracy.
  • We’ve also refactored Lumberyard’s cross-platform architecture. We removed heavy reliance on cascading platform #ifdefs by reorganizing platform-specific code into a parallel directory hierarchy. This makes cross-platform feature development and maintenance easier and also significantly reduces the effort required to add new platforms to Lumberyard. (Note that public APIs were not changed as part of this refactor.)

You can read full details of this release in the release notes available here or by watching the video below.  The example N.E.M.O demonstrated in the video below is available here.

GameDev News


Blender Google Summer of Code 2019 Results

Every year Google sponsors the Summer of Code, a program that pays students to work on open source projects.  This year’s GSoC is over and the results are being released.  Earlier in the week the Godot game engine reported their results, yesterday Blender reported the results of the 7 projects undertaken in the 2019 summer of code.

The 2019 GSoC projects at Blender were:

More details about the entries are available of the Blender Developer blog or learn more by watching the video below.

GameDev News


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AppGameKit Studio Free Mega Media Pack

The Game Creators have just announced an excellent new perk for owners of AppGameKit Studio, their newly released 2D game engine with a full editor built on top of the AppGameKit SDK.  Available as free DLC, AppGameKit Studio owners will now get the Mega Media Bundle free.

Details from the AppGameKit website:

This FREE DLC for AppGameKit STUDIO includes these AppGameKit Classic media libraries:

  • 3D Asset Pack
  • Community Template Games
  • Games Pack 1
  • Games Pack 2
  • Giant Asset Pack 1
  • Giant Asset Pack 2

3D Asset Pack
Includes over 250 low polygon 3D models, complete with diffuse, normal and specular textures, ready to drop into your project.
The assets are subdivided into eight categories, and provide an ideal starting point for your 3D game or app

Community Template Games
A range of AppGameKit projects with full source code and media to help you learn how different game genres can be created

Games Pack 1
Over 20 AppGameKit game projects you can play, many of which come with full source code

Games Pack 2
Full project source code is included with all the seventeen games in this pack

Giant Asset Pack 1
A library of over 400 megs of 2D art assets are at your disposal. Includes platformer graphics, space genre art, explosion animations, UI art, vehicles and much more

Giant Asset Pack 2
Art for classic board games, pixel art, slots, icons, characters and more – over 350 megs of art assets

Owners of AppGameKit Studio can download the pack from TheGameCreators Order History Area and Steam users can just add the DLC to their library for FREE.

If you are interested in learning AppGameKit Studio be sure to check out our step by step tutorial available here or watch the video embedded below.

GameDev News


Python Humble Bundle–Courses, IDE, Videos and Books

There is a new Humble Bundle of interest to developers, the Humble Level Up Your Python Bundle.  This one is an eclectic mix of Python related content including subscriptions to JetBrain’s PyCharm Python IDE, access to training courses, videos and books.  As always Humble Bundles are organized into tiers, with each tier giving complete access to all the tiers below it.  In this case however it is slightly different, in that subscription duration replace those from the lower tiers with a longer duration and are not cumulative.

Tiers of this bundle consist of:

1$ Tier

  • PyCharm IDE Pro Subscription 2 Months
  • MongoDB for Developers Video
  • PyBites Code Challenge 20
  • Python Tricks The Book
  • Illustrated Guide to Python 3

14$ Tier

  • PyCharm 4 Months
  • Async Techniques and Examples in Python Video
  • Pytbites Code Challenge 40
  • Python  Basics
  • Learning the Panda Library

20$ Tier

  • Building Data Driven Web Apps with Flask and SQLAlchemy Video
  • Pybites 60
  • Managing Python Dependencies with Pip and Virtual Video
  • Effective PyCharm
  • PyCharm IDE 6 Month Subscription
  • Python Morsels: Weekly Practice 6 Month Subscription

Please be aware that many of these items need to be redeemed before the end of 2019 or they will expire.  As always with Humble you can choose how your money is allocated between the publisher, humble, charity or if you choose (and thanks if you do!) GFS.  If you are interested in learning Python for Game Development, check out the following Python Game Engine resource.

GameDev News


Huge Fanatical GameDev eBook Bundles

Fanatical have just entered the book market with a number of eBook bundles on a variety of subjects including Blender, Unity, Unreal and C++ development.  In the case of the Unreal and C++ books you can even buy individual books or smaller bundle packages to suit your needs.  Additionally there are bundles on machine learning, security, blockchain, WordPress, command line and more.

The primary bundles of interest to game developers are:

The books in this bundle are from Packt Press, which can vary massively in quality.  Several of the books have also been in prior Humble Bundles, so be sure to check your Humble library before making a purchase.  All of the above links contain an affiliate code that helps support the channel if you use them to make a purchase (and thanks if you do!). 

Learn more about the bundles in the video below.

GameDev News