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Author Topic: Playmaker for 2D games?  (Read 15814 times)

Psmith

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Playmaker for 2D games?
« on: April 30, 2011, 02:45:45 AM »
Having discovered that the Nook Color development program is recommending Unity3D as a development platform - and being that this particular hardware is probably not suited for full-fledged 3D gaming experiences - I am wondering if Playmaker is capable of producing all of the code for a platform based 2D game.

Also, is Playmaker capable of putting together all the pieces for more of a "multi-media" Nook app - featuring simple, clickable, animating objects (2D) and animated 2D or 2.5D "windows" or "frames" on a typical eBook page?

If so, the Nook platform has some appealing possibilities, seeing that it is probably the least expensive tablet, using a flavor of Android OS, available - and that Barnes & Noble has a very unique and curated app dispensary in development. 

Having Playmaker as a primary development tool would be quite empowering to many writers and artists wishing to create interactive, yet not too demanding, 2D "book-like" content.

sP0CkEr

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Re: Playmaker for 2D games?
« Reply #1 on: April 30, 2011, 11:04:50 AM »
PlayMaker plus SpriteManager 2 is a great combination.

Psmith

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Re: Playmaker for 2D games?
« Reply #2 on: April 30, 2011, 11:29:02 AM »
I was wondering about that particular combination - but I'm also wondering if all the code could be produced with this combination of plug-ins.

I've been down the UnityScript road more than a few times, and I'm not even going to consider trying to program anything with that language - directly.  It's not for me.

So, I wonder if Alex could comment on this possibility and, specifically to the question regarding whether ALL code can be produced by Playmaker to make a fairly simple platform game - and an even simpler "multi-media book" experience that would run on the Android platform.


Thanks,

Psmith

Alex Chouls

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Re: Playmaker for 2D games?
« Reply #3 on: May 01, 2011, 10:00:09 PM »
Playmaker should work great for simple multimedia/interactive book apps - however I have no experience with Nook! If Unity runs on it okay, Playmaker should be fine. But you might want to double check the hardware specs for the Nook to get a sense of its limitations...

I'd certainly be interested in any research you do, and will try to find some time to do some myself. I agree, Nook would be a cool platform for artists and writers!

Psmith

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Re: Playmaker for 2D games?
« Reply #4 on: May 02, 2011, 12:50:36 AM »
Alex:

Although these specs mean very little to me (I'm just a writer and an artist) - maybe you can relate them to Unity/Playmaker requirements - and thanks for considering this platform:

NOOKcolor Full Specifications
Didn't know NC had it's own section. I'll be here a lot.


NOOKcolor full specs:

PCB: Foxconn ML1 S 94V-0

CPU Processor: ARM Cortex A8-based Ti OMAP 3621 @ 800 MHz (same processor as Droid 2 and Droid X)

GPU Processor: PowerVR SGX530 Graphics Rendering: Open GLES1.1/2.0 Hardware Scaling: 854x480 scaled to 1024x600 Video Formats: .3GP, .MP4, .3G2 ** Video Codecs: H.263, H.264, MPEG-4, ON2 VP7 ** Image Formats: JPEG, GIF, PNG, BMP ** (same GPU as Droid 2 and Droid X)

RAM: 512MB Hynix H8MBX00U0MER-0EM MCM (Stacked Chips 2x256MB each die mDDR)

Internal Flash: 8GB Sandisk SDIN4C1-8g

Removable Flash: 32GB via microSDHC

Radio: Chip ID Ti wl1271 (kernel reports wl1273) Chip supports bluetooth transmit/recieve and fm radio functions through the same antenna, but is not enabled in software drivers. Connectivity: 802.11b/g/n Security: WEP/WPA/WPA2/802.1x Mode: Infrastructure

Display: 7" 1024x600 IPS Display w\VividView Cypress Semiconductor TTSP Gen 3 (TMA340) Touchscreen , kernel driver , reference LG Display LD070WS1 (SL)(02) LED Backlight Pixels per Inch: 169 Aspect Ratio: 16:9 Colors: 16 Million Viewing Angle: 178° (same as HTC 7 Surround and HTC 7 Mozart)

Audio: Ti TLV320DAC3100 Codec 3.5mm Headset Jack (TRS 3-Pole) - no mic input Single Rear Speaker PWM Headphone Amp Headphone Detection Mic Amp and ADC (Mic input not available) Audio Formats: .3GP, .3G2, .MP4, .AMR, .MP3, .MID, .XMF, .MXMF, .RTTL, .OTA, .IMY, .WAV, .OGG, .ACC ** Audio Codecs: ACC, ACC+, AMR, MP3, MIDI, LPCM **

Power Management: Texas Instruments TPS65921 PMIC Integrated Power Management IC with 3 DC/DC's, 4 LDO's, USB HS Transceiver
Battery: "Barnes & Noble" labeled 3.7V 4000mAh 14.8Wh Li-ion battery Battery Life: ~8 hours

Physical Specifications Dimensions: 8.1" (205mm) L x 5" (127mm) W x 0.48" (12.2mm) D Weight: ~15.8oz (~422g)
Micro-B USB 2.0 High-Speed

Accelerometer
Input Virtual QWERTY Keyboard On-Screen Soft-Keys ** 'n' Home button Power\Lock button Volume Up\Down buttons


Psmith

Psmith

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Re: Playmaker for 2D games?
« Reply #5 on: May 02, 2011, 02:05:38 AM »
Alex:

Also, this, from the Unity Forums:

Quote
Posted: 01:29 PM 03-15-2011
Hey guys,

another cheap Andoid development tablet is the Nook Color. Bought mine for $199.

The Nook Color is an android powered ebook reader and there is a huge modding community out there which is providing roms and rooting tools.

I'm currently running phiremod 4.1 which turns the Android 2.1 based Nook into a 2.3 one with market support.

The Nook Color (with custom rom) supports Unity in all terms:
- You can download and play Unity games from the market
- You can run Unity Android apk's build with Unity 3.2+
- You can set the Nook Color into developer mode which will allow you to use Unity's Build & Run feature
- Accelerometer and Touchscreen (including 2 finger multi touch) work great

My one and only concern about this device is the 800 MHz CPU which has to push graphics to a 1024x600 screen. So the CPU speed / pixel amount ratio is rather bad.


Psmith

MaDDoX

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Re: Playmaker for 2D games?
« Reply #6 on: May 03, 2011, 10:42:18 AM »
Yesterday I've completed the full coding of a Space Invaders (with 2D objects) remake using nothing but PlayMaker, so I can say with confidence that this is 100% achievable from the development side. Depending on the complexity of the game you might need a couple custom actions, but for the absolute majority of 2D games it won't be needed, PlayMaker already has all you'll need.
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Psmith

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Re: Playmaker for 2D games?
« Reply #7 on: May 03, 2011, 12:37:52 PM »
Maddox:

Fantastic news!  This is all totally new to me, so I've been wondering how collisions are detected when an object is "really" 2D.  Seems to me that I've seen some "2D" examples which use objects that are actually 2.5 or skinny 3D things.

Are there any good references of what is required in Unity for establishing all of the important things regarding 2D game layout?  Collision detection, included?

Thanks for sharing your success.  I think Playmaker has the potential to really change the game, so far as "who" is doing the authoring goes.


Psmith

MaDDoX

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Re: Playmaker for 2D games?
« Reply #8 on: May 03, 2011, 03:13:52 PM »
Thanks Psmith!

I've been wondering how collisions are detected when an object is "really" 2D.  Seems to me that I've seen some "2D" examples which use objects that are actually 2.5 or skinny 3D things.
Yeah, sorry for playing Captain Obvious but, 2D objects are nothing but 3D objects.. without the third dimension :) Same applies for colliders, no big deal, as long as you never apply any force or offset your objects in the Z dimension. This might sound weird, but I have a number of reasons for not liking sprites (and I've owned and used Sprite Manager 2 since when it costed puny $50 heh), so my way is to use Illustrator for the object / outline drawing, import it into a 3D package - Modo has some issues with that but Maya and Lightwave actually do a great job here - assign materials, etc, then simply export it to FBX. I do frame-switch animation by simply having multiple sub-objects in the same FBX, works like a charm with the "Set Visibility" action that I've posted here. Actually I've posted every single custom action which I needed in the user actions section, no secrets held here :)

Quote
Are there any good references of what is required in Unity for establishing all of the important things regarding 2D game layout?  Collision detection, included?
Actually my #1 reason for putting up this game remake was to use it as the object for in an in-depth video tutorial on how to make a full game without a single line of code! This has been a highly touted subject, but few have taken the plunge to actually try and make it, never mind actually sharing the knowledge. I intend to provide the complete source code and video separately, for who just want one or the other, or in an affordable pack with both. The tutorial video will cover the whole production, from creating the 2D and audio assets, how to properly create a highly maintainable structure to build the game upon, to showing how to create the different controllers and systems for the game, including the escalating difficulty AI. Should be very interesting stuff for anyone serious about learning how to use Unity and Playmaker to create interactive content, stay tuned :)

GUI elements are next, but here goes a little WIP screenshot:
« Last Edit: May 03, 2011, 03:15:54 PM by MaDDoX »
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Breno "MaDDoX" Azevedo
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Psmith

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Re: Playmaker for 2D games?
« Reply #9 on: May 03, 2011, 09:08:04 PM »
Maddox:

Well, I'll buy, (if the price is within reason) - this has been needed for ages.

It will open up game and interactive development for a host of artists, designers and even writers - especially those developing for portable platforms (like the Nook).

Psmith

tobbeo

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Re: Playmaker for 2D games?
« Reply #10 on: May 04, 2011, 05:58:22 PM »
I'm making a complex 2D game and since Playmaker came out I haven't had the need to use any manual code. It's a year in the making, an while I am happy with how it's looking I'm a bit far away from showing it. Going to approach publishers in a couple of months. It's an ambitious title.

I can say that it's fully doable. Minimize the use of alpha blended sprites as much as you can as they are costly. For physics, have everything on one plane and use capsule or sphere for colliders. You can restrict the axis the objects can move in code but most of the time I don't have a need for that. Sprite Maker 2 is a fantastic/essential tool for creating and controlling sprite sheets. It can generate sprite sheets by croping each frame to it's nearest visible pixel and store the transform. Saves tonnes of UV space that you can use for other bits and pieces. iTween is pretty essential too and free.

Only thing I'm missing in Unity that UDK/Cryengine3 has is per object motion blur and per object glow (I can't get that to work with the multiple cameras trick!). Not a huge deal for me but the per object motion blur in my case would fit the art-style. UDK also has some very neat procedural material creation tools that save GPU memory at the (often small) expense of GPU power. But overall I am very happy with everything Unity has to offer for my game design.

MaDDoX

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Re: Playmaker for 2D games?
« Reply #11 on: May 04, 2011, 11:09:53 PM »
Quote
Well, I'll buy, (if the price is within reason) - this has been needed for ages.
Of course, I've even made many video tutorials for free in the past. Of course this is a more involved project which is pulling me away from other paid real life tasks (including game projects), yet price will be the same as any similar training, even sensibly lower with the package I mentioned. My main objective is spreading the knowledge and empowering the artists that want to learn a completely visual approach for building logic inside Unity. Thanks for the words of support Psmith.

Quote from: tobbeo
Only thing I'm missing in Unity that UDK/Cryengine3 has is per object motion blur and per object glow (I can't get that to work with the multiple cameras trick!).
You got me curious, you think you didn't get it working due to some limitation between Unity and the iPhone or isn't it working even inside your PC? What approach did you use, the one by the Blur Studios guys or the Unity Sample scene found in their site?
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tobbeo

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Re: Playmaker for 2D games?
« Reply #12 on: May 05, 2011, 12:17:14 AM »

Quote from: tobbeo
Only thing I'm missing in Unity that UDK/Cryengine3 has is per object motion blur and per object glow (I can't get that to work with the multiple cameras trick!).
You got me curious, you think you didn't get it working due to some limitation between Unity and the iPhone or isn't it working even inside your PC? What approach did you use, the one by the Blur Studios guys or the Unity Sample scene found in their site?
[/quote]

Just on the PC. It's going to be a PC/Mac and hopefully a PSN release if I get my way. We'll see what publisher's responses are. I tried the Unity Sample scene and I had trouble transferring what he did to my file. I feel I set it up exactly the way the sample scene was setup and yet I couldn't get it to work. I haven't heard of Blur Studio making a Unity example (I used to work at Blur Studio for a year in 2009, they only do pre-rendered so I'm curious that they did a Unity tutorial?), where can I find that one?