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RaMtiGA - Raising a Middleworld to its Golden Age
RaMtiGA - Raising a Middleworld to its Golden Age: Blog
Feb 15

Erstellt von: Jashan Chittesh

Now that was a really amazing coincidence: I was playing Traces of Illumination on my iPad while waiting for the very first build for Google Android - and this time, I completed Level 03 in single player mode. This means: I've just conquered single player mode of Traces of Illumination on the iPad for the very first time. A historical moment! I think that's pretty cool given that a lot of people don't even manage to get into Level 03 on the PC. Oh well, okay ... I do play this game a lot during development ;-)

So ... anyways - aside of the GUI which just wasn't designed for small screens, Traces of Illumination works really well on the iPad and iPhone 4 and pretty alright on the iPhone 3GS. I won't support older device because I don't even have test devices. With the GUI, there's a complete redesign coming up. Not sure if I've mentioned that in a previous blog posting ... I've got EZ GUI and SpriteManager 2 now, and this time, I'll add localization support from the start (and do things much cleaner, too ;-) ). I didn't really expect to do a complete GUI redesign for V1.1.2 - but I also didn't expect to publish Traces of Illumination for mobile devices this early. But I will. This is just too awesome to not share it with the world. And, Traces of Illumination is about experiencing the unexpected anyways - me not wantez to exclude mysellff from diz fun ;-)

I'll keep separate high scores for mobile devices, as it's a bit different there, and I'll also add some extra awards that you can only earn when playing with a mobile device. I'm not sure if I'll immediately include the complete Tutorial as adjusting this for mobile will be quite a bit of work (I mean, real, boring work ;-) ). On the other hand, I think a tutorial is kind of necessary for this kind of game. Not everyone grew up with Lightcycles ;-)

Well, finally I'd like to mention that Traces of Illumination also looks more or less okay on the Google Nexus One. There's still some bugs (ironically one where the tracer always makes "double turns" also first appeared on iOS devices ... I fixed that by putting some code that really didn't belong into OnGUI into Update ... bit this part is really just a quick hack to get things working anyways, so I'm not too concerned). There's also sporadic visual errors, like the floor disappearing and the like. That's not nice - but I think it shouldn't be too hard to fix this.

Framerates on the Nexus One are also "alright" ... some 20-30 FPS.

Today, I did quite a bit of cleaning up with the power-ups and apples; those now share two materials for everything: A transparent one and a non-transparent one. This is instead of 9 materials for the power-ups and 3 for the apples. So, dynamic batching now works much better than before and the number of draw calls went down quite a bit (in one perspective in Level 02 - The Square that I used for testing, I'm now down from 925 draw calls, 0 batched (in best quality settings, before I started optimizing) to 12 draw calls, 175 batched (fastest, everything optimized quite a bit).

That's really the nice thing of developing your first game: When you start, you do everything wrong one could do wrong ... and then, you get this sense of accomplishment when finally doing things the way you should have done them right from the start. But hey, this was meant to be a learning project right from the start ... and ... it wasn't meant to be run on mobile devices in the beginning.

I now also added some much nicer management for handling different materials. So I can now support lores/hires textures and unlit/lit materials (to be precise, I have lores unlit, hires unlit and hires with lighting). This already works for all level items (power-ups and apples) and I'll also add this for the level geometry itself and also the tracers (level geometry and tracers are a little more complex to set up but I guess eventually it'll be smooth - reducing materials per object is not only nice for performance but also makes things much easier to handle from the development perspective ;-) ).

There's still quite a bit to do - but it's coming along. It won't be long, and you'll be able to play Traces of Illumination on mobile devices, in the Web browser, as standalone players on Windows and Mac and as Mac OS X Widget ... and: Eventually, you'll also be able to play networked game sessions between all of these. I'm not sure if I'll be able to automate the mobile builds the way I've already automated all the other builds ... eventually, I guess I'll just call one script and a new version will be deployed everywhere.

Then, I'll start some serious game development ;-)


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