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Thread: Preparing for a commercial project - Q&A

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    Preparing for a commercial project - Q&A

    Let's start with a bit of background: I'm an indie developer who is better at being a designer than being a programmer. I've been making games for about 10 years. I've made several relatively successful games using MMF and the SWF exporter. This summer I'm planning on going for something bigger: a full-on commercial downloadable game.

    However, MMF is a big program with a ton of extensions, and there are a number of things I wonder about. I also figured that a number of other people are also probably worrying about similar questions. So I thought I'd start this thread, with the following purposes in mind:

    1. Asking a number of questions about how to best prepare for this project
    2. Allowing others to ask questions or come up with various suggestions
    3. Taking all the answers and turning them into a tutorial to make it easier for other people to prepare for big projects

    Note that this is only about technical questions, not questions of design or production.

    ------------

    So, to get this started, here are some questions:

    What is the best way of saving information? For Flash games there's INI, but what about downloadable games? Especially considering the weirdness of some versions of Windows apparently only allowing games to save information in specific folders.

    What should be kept in mind when making a game that should also work on a Mac?

    I'm not making a platform game right now, but since I've had some problems with the standard platforming code, what extensions should one use to create a game that runs as smoothly as possible?


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    Re: Preparing for a commercial project - Q&A

    You should use the YASO object to get the user's Application Data folder, which is for, believe it or not, application data - you can save your game in a sub-folder, eg Application Data\My Game\Files.txt
    For actually saving data, you would have to pick out an object that best relates to your needs. Currently there is no generic object to save information (although I am working on one), but there are many different objects available to save data, and some are specifically designed for saving, whereas others are so specific that they are not flexible.

    Java compatible extensions - currently MMF2 Dev only allows you to build for Macs via a Java runtime.

    The PMO is a good choice for simple platforming and it is much more customizable, as you can turn off its movement at any time and do your own movement with it. If you're not good at coding this will greatly help you.

    I'm sure many other users will pitch in with their good advice too
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    Re: Preparing for a commercial project - Q&A

    Quote Originally Posted by LB
    The PMO is a good choice for simple platforming and it is much more customizable, as you can turn off its movement at any time and do your own movement with it. If you're not good at coding this will greatly help you.
    I've seen a lot of slowdown issues with the PMO on some computers (not just in my games), which is why I was wondering whether there's either a different object to use or some specific tip for avoiding such problems.

    I'd love to hear more perspectives on the subject of saving. It's not that I don't think I can do it, but I find that saving/loading is one of those small things that developers sometimes neglect to think about, with painful results.

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    Re: Preparing for a commercial project - Q&A

    Oh, another question to add:

    What about particles? What's the best extension to use? Are there any known issues, or things one should consider?

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    Re: Preparing for a commercial project - Q&A

    How can you be sure that the slowdown was caused by the PMO alone? Even on my superslow Windows XP from 10 years ago the PMO runs faster than most other things.

    Anyway, with particles, you should consider that if you choose to make many, many small active objects, it will use a lot of memory (keeping track of animation frames, alterable values, etc) but will cause slowdown at a lesser rate than larger actives (less to draw). As for an extension...there are some particle related extensions...
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    Re: Preparing for a commercial project - Q&A

    Array, no Macs, PMO.

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    Re: Preparing for a commercial project - Q&A

    Quote Originally Posted by LB
    How can you be sure that the slowdown was caused by the PMO alone? Even on my superslow Windows XP from 10 years ago the PMO runs faster than most other things.
    Because I've seen it happen on my own computer - pretty randomly - and have had it confirmed by other developers who have developed multiple games in MMF. On some computers, even fast ones, it seems to happen all the time, even if nothing else is running.

    Anyway, this wasn't my primary question, but I was wondering what the general consensus was, and whether there are any popular alternatives.

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    Re: Preparing for a commercial project - Q&A

    PMO always showed effective here. By the way, in Java game for mobile, it works fast too.

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