Author: jjordanarenas (page 2 of 2)

New app in the App Store: Geo Events

geo eventsThis week we have something new! Geo Events is now available, our new application. With it you can see who was born or died on a day like today or what happened on your birthday.

Use the filters to get the facts that interest you. Then if you want to know more about this person or event, the application allows you to open the Wikipedia website. This functionality has been possible thanks to the incorporation of TSMiniWebBrowser, a component developed by Toni Sala from Indie Dev Stories, thanks Toni!

What are you waiting for? Give it a try!

Download_on_the_App_Store_Badge_US-UK_135x40

@jjordanarenas

Tutorial: Getting started to Cocos2D-X

cocos2d-x-logoA couple of months ago I started working with Ray Wenderlich updating and writing new Cocos2D-X tutorials and yesterday the first of the was published:  Cocos2D-X Tutorial for iOS and Android: Getting Started.

Although this is a tutorial for beginners, contains information that will be useful even to those who already have some experience with Cocos2D-X. For example, one aspect that is discussed in the tutorial is the configuration of the working environment for both iOS and Android, and this is where someone who has only dealt with Xcode can find most problems.

The Java world can be very cruel, particularly if allied with Eclipse and Android, for someone who only knows the iOS development environment so the tutorial explains step by step how to configure both Xcode and Eclipse to have them ready to develop games using Cocos2D-X: from installing templates Cocos2D-X projects or declaring environment variables to configure a virtual device for Android.

Thus, whether you are initiated in Cocos2D-X or you have done your own games but you still haven’t port them to Android, I recommend you to take a look at Cocos2D-X Tutorial for iOS and Android: Getting Started and get ready for the next tutorials, they are going to be fun!

@jjordanarenas

2D games frameworks

I want to start developing games for smartphones, what framework should I use? That’s the question every developer asks and the reason is, fortunately, there is a huge range of frameworks to achieve our goal. There are frameworks based on scripting languages ​​and those based on object-oriented languages, open-source and private, to develop iOS and multiplatform games, with a higher or lower learning curve, 2D or 3D, etc. Surfing the Internet we find that we can choose from numerous options: Corona, Cocos2d, Unity3D, GameSalad, Adobe AIR, Torque2D, Kobold2D. So, what framework is the best? Unfortunately the answer is not simple and depends on the characteristics that we are looking for in. We must analyze the pros and cons of each and choose the one that best suits our needs.

In our case, we seek a framework that allows us to develop 2D games for iOS (although we don’t discard the other platforms), preferably free or not too expensive and that is powerful enough to easily support physical and particle effects. Of all those mentioned above we will analyze and compare Corona, Cocos2d (specifically Cocos2d-x) and Unity, as they cover our needs in different ways.

Corona

CoronaIt’s a cross-platform framework ( iOS , Android , Kindle Fire and NOOK ) and includes libraries with OpenGL, OpenAL, Google Maps, Box2D, Facebook Connect and Game Center. Thanks to them you can create both games and apps of all kinds. Corona is based on LUA, a scripting language very light and easy to learn. Most professionals agree that it takes less time and fewer lines of code to develop as compared to Java, Objective-C or C++ (provided that they don’t include advanced options like multiplayer or synchronize data “in the cloud”).

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The untapped potential of smartphones

Since I bought my first iPhone, fascinated me the potential it had in the area of geolocation. The fact that the applications would not remain “trapped” inside the device and could interact with the environment, display information for locations near you and even extend this information through augmented reality, was to imagine a future of exciting applications. It formed in my mind illusions about strategy games, adventure games, artificial intelligence, RPG’s and MMO’s but, to date, none of the applications on the market have come to my fantasies and I am a little disappointed.

The typical “mafia war” games with its role variations is flooding the App Store today. Surely this is due to the restrictions of a geolocation (high energy consumption of the device, little precision to obtain the location, need for powerful servers to facilitate the transmission of data, forcing the user mobility), but I think it is possible to develop more powerful and, in my opinion, more interesting games. Perhaps we should start the imagination to find an incentive to get users to stand up from their couches or, perhaps, we have to make them understand that there are other ways to play with a smartphone, but I think there is still a worldbe exploited in this area and I will try to do my best.

To achieve this, since more than a year I started in developing applications for iPhone, trying to study especially the “Core Location“. I was thrilled when I knew  that the so-called “Regions” was included in IOS5 because it added other possibilities to ideas that had formed in my head, especially for detecting that the user has reached a certain area without the application requires his direct action, it allows that unexpected events can run and make the experience more interesting. I have also received with emotion the news that Apple will use its own maps on iOS6and I hope that future versions of the SDK include improvements in the location section, for example, some form of dividing the map into cells, as several of my ideas depend on this to have potential.

For some time I have in mind a couple of applications I would like to develop, but because I can’t dedicate the 100% of my time, it does evolve slowly. So now I am focused on the “simpler” application and I’ve dedicated  several weeks working on the idea to shape it. For now, I can only say that it makes use of the location core (surprise!) so I hope I’m writing an entry soon to give details.

@jjordanarenas

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