Game Development

PlayScript: Zynga Playing Clever

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The need to convert Web content to mobile has exploded with users’ adoption of mobile technologies and mobile apps. And while mobile isn’t replacing the Web, content providers need to create content for both places. In the earlier days of mobile development, that meant re-writing Web apps for each mobile platform. To combat this hugely inefficient process, a variety of compilers have been developed that generate code compatible with other platforms. For example, there are C++ compilers for Android that… continue…

‘Fighting Fantasy’ as an App-Game Genre

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Those of a certain age who played games in the 1980s or 1990s may recall the Fighting Fantasy (FF) books. Published beginning in the 1980s, they weren’t the first gamebooks but they were the most well-known and became the embodiment of the genre. The series consists of 59 books, each a standalone single-player role playing game, where the reader has just two dice, a pencil and an eraser to complete a quest. The paragraphs in the book present challenges for… continue…

SteamOS Could Be Great for Linux, Costly for Microsoft

Posted In Linux, Working in Tech
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With the wraps off SteamOS, the real reason why Valve has not so quietly been promoting Linux game development recently might have come out of the bag. The new operating system, which is Linux-based, is primarily geared toward entertainment. Not just games mind you – it’s for television, movies and music as well. We’ve known for some time that Valve’s been working on a console of sorts, but the money was on it being a small form-factor PC, so the… continue…

Creating a Multi-Player Game? Watch the Money

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Based in Auckland, New Zealand, indie developer David Colquohun started running his MMORTS game Ironfell in 2012. In August 2013, he had to close it down because it was losing too much money. The game had accumulated losses of $17,300, and that’s before calculating in payment for his time. Just one month later, in September 2013, Ironfell restarted. The new version had a number of changes to make it more active and reduce the number of empty realms. He’s also… continue…

XNA is Dead; Long Live MonoGame

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Back in January, Microsoft announced it was going to phase out XNA, the development framework that powered Xbox development. It also said it was no longer evolving the DirectX API, which has been the main technology for Windows games for the last 17 years. The announcement about DirectX was quickly retracted and a followup email indicated that DirectX development would continue and be better integrated into Visual Studio. But the way that communication was handled brought concern from developers about… continue…

Run an Oil Field With This Documentary Game

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The oil industry has never been without its critics. Celebrities speaking out against it include the likes of Neil Young and Daryl Hannah, who have singled out Fort McMurray in Alberta, Canada, because of the oil sands extraction going on there. The effort there has been described by Prime Minister Stephen Harper as the world’s largest energy project. Now there’s a Web documentary game coming in November: Fort McMoney by David Dufresne, is all about Fort McMurray. Dufresne is known… continue…

5 C# Libraries You Need to Know

Posted In C++/C#, Working in Tech
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A few weeks ago, in honor of our new C++ and C# talent community, I told you about five of Community Guide David Bolton’s favorite C++ libraries. In an effort to maintain equality, here’s his top five for C#.

Global Games: Culturalize, Not Localize

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While a lot of attention is paid to localization in game creation, many American developers don’t consider another important – some would say critical – aspect of design: culturalization. If you’re seeking to rapidly distribute titles in an era where everything is global, you can’t afford to ignore the challenges related to the way players from different regions and cultures will respond to your product. By not adapting to the multicultural marketplace, you run the risk of leaving money on… continue…

Big Fish Ditches Cloud-Streaming, to Lay Off 49

Posted In Looking in Tech
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Big Fish Games plans to close its cloud game-streaming initiative and lay off 49 employees in Seattle, as well as close offices in Vancouver, B.C., and Cork, Ireland. Big Fish had 524 full-time employees in Seattle earlier this month, so the layoffs there represent about 9 percent of its workforce. The business, meanwhile, grew 30 percent last year, with sales of more than $180 million. Company Founder Paul Thelen, who returned as Chief Executive last year, announced the cuts in… continue…

Microsoft Announces Indie-Publishing Platform for Xbox One

Posted In Working in Tech
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Microsoft began taking applications this week for independent game developers who want to self-publish games for its upcoming Xbox One console. While other consoles, such as Sony’s PlayStation4 and Nintendo’s Wii U already have indie-publishing platforms, game producers have been waiting for Microsoft to make its console more open. Microsoft’s indie-publishing platform, ID@Xbox, sets indies up to expand beyond the PlayStation4 and Wii U ecosystems, and potentially build a viable business and career. The Xbox One is scheduled to launch… continue…