03 January 2014
From the Forum — Issue #1
Welcome to the first installment of a new series on the Corona blog: From the Forum. In this series, guest blogger Alex Jackson will highlight outstanding threads from the Corona Forum. The goal is to bring attention to the most captivating, interesting, and thought-provoking discussions taking place in our very own backyard.
Please visit the forum to join these conversations or start your own!
1. First app challenges
A fascinating discussion is going on regarding what is, arguably, the most important question an indie Dev has to answer: “How do you get people to buy your app?”
Getting traction with the public is difficult in any industry, and game/app development is no different. However, posing this as a problem can be a lot of the problem! If you were doing everything right, you wouldn’t have trouble generating interest or sales. As many of the comments in the thread suggest, a successful developer needs to combine a killer app with a competent marketing campaign, motivated beta testers and a healthy amount of luck to turn a labor of love into something people just can’t put down.
I think that we can all agree there is no perfect recipe for app success, but that doesn’t mean we’re going to get out of the kitchen! Head on over to the original thread and put in your two cents.
2. Graphics 2.0 color migration
Anyone who has been around Corona since the 1200’s era of releases knows how simple the setFillCollor scheme was. Love it or hate it, the new public beta brought with it a host of changes. Including moving to a larger color set and effectively expanding for HD colors.
The reasons are obvious: with devices specs increasing exponentially, the ability to present new and vibrant images through our apps is a powerful tool. Getting your game onto an Ouya hooked up to an HDTV or a newer device that can handle higher color output makes your app stand out. However, with every new change comes pain. There is a significant amount of us who find the change is dashing months of hard work. This can be a demoralizing situation and cause the best of us to become lost in frustration.
No matter upon what side of the fence you fall on, do yourself a favour and check out the discussion going on over in the APIs forum. The real treasure is finding out the fantastic and talented David McClusky has created a tool that will allow your apps to use the older color model without the 0/255 implementation. More than that, the thread has given David’s work the limelight that it deserves. Head to the link to join the discussion and see what else David has been cooking up!
3. A level editor to call our own
Super Mario Brothers. Legend of Zelda. Metroid. Castlevania. What do all of these games have in common? If you answered ruggedly handsome leading men, you’d be wrong (and Samus will want a word with you!). The commonality is that they all have immersive game play that takes place in vivid game worlds. I’m showing my age here, but I still remember getting nervous every time the sun went down in Castlevania 2!
Now, with Corona, we have the chance to create these experiences ourselves. As developers, the game play part has to be our wheelhouse. While Corona Labs (and other third parties) have discussed a native level editor in the past, the ease of the SDK and the lua language has spurred our developer family to bring their own takes to life! Third party developers have picked up the baton to provide users with a level creator to call their own. First there was Lime, then Grout, and now the stalwarts Dyson122 and Caleb P are completely crushing it with the Million Tile Engine and Dusk, respectively.
Whip your way over to the original thread to find out how a couple indie developers are poised to take the Corona world by storm!
Alex Jackson is an indie developer and the founder of Panc Software, specializing in retro-style gaming. He has created several mobile applications, enjoys long walks on the beach, pixel art, and reading the Corona forums. Contact him by email or follow him on Twitter: @pancsoftware.