Some questions regarding features in Visionaire

  • #1, by JakubSunday, 22. June 2014, 15:46 6 years ago
    Hi,
    Ive been lurking here for some time now, looking how the software develops and waiting for some features so that I could jump in on the bandwagon and start making a game! smile

    I did download the software demo back when it was in the 3.x version, and did fiddle a little bit, as well as reading the forums here to find some answers but I do have some questions which I did not find any answers too (or perhaps I have missed them):


    1) Is it possible to change the animation interpolation for when the screen follows a player moving? At the moment the animation is a little bit "clunky", a little easing out and in would be great to make it a little more smooth smile

    2) Are there alpha masks for player animations? For example if there was a part of the player which would have to be a bit transparent so the background would be visible through that part? Probably this could take up some memory? Is it even worth doing this memory wise in a game (especially for tablets)?

    3) Will there be tutorials that show step by step how to code puzzles?

    4) I have read that there will be a feature that can make the turnaround animation transitions available (animation between facing left and right for example), that would really be a nice feature which I am missing overall in Visionaire, would add so much with that extra bit of polish, I cant wait for the feature to be implemented smile
    Not to keep nagging you guys, but any idea during which iteration might this be implemented? 4.1? 4.2..?

    5) Is it possible to publish to Mac and the Ipad from the PC (as this probably needs Xcode) ? Or do I have to make the game on a Visionaire on the Mac?

    6) Do users have the help and support of Visionaire team when it comes to glitches and bugs when it comes to new graphic cards or drivers (similar problems that happened to some people with Deponia) ? I ask because this would be my first game, and handling such bugs would be over my head, as this would make me focus more on the game development smile


    Thanks for taking the time to answer,
    Cheers!

    Jakub

    Newbie

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  • #2, by afrlmeSunday, 22. June 2014, 16:29 6 years ago
    1. not sure what you mean here. you talking about the vibrating character animations when the character is walking or the not so smooth screen scrolling?

    2. If you use .png files then the alphamask should be included in the animation image. Any transparent -or semi-transparent - parts will be transparent - or semi-transparent - as they are in the image.

    3. what sort of puzzles & do you mean with lua script? editor action parts? or possibly a combination of the 2? I have no idea if there will be any tutorials (text or video); that would be up to myself, other members of the community or the VS team.

    4. I have no idea, if or when this will be implemented, but it will more likely than not require a bit of lua script to achieve it.

    5. Visionaire Studio (paid versions) have an export/build option. You can export/build for various platforms. It doesn't matter if you are working via windows or mac osx - possibly linux in future release. Some of the export/build options are a bit limited at the minute as they are in beta & thus require you to do a bit of manual configuration & so on. See here.

    6. No you do not have direct access or support from the Visionaire Studio dev team. You can post bugs, .dmp (dump files) & .ved files & other such things here or send a message to one of the devs to see if they would be willing to help you.

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  • #3, by JakubSunday, 22. June 2014, 17:10 6 years ago
    1. not sure what you mean here. you talking about the vibrating character animations when the character is walking or the not so smooth screen scrolling?

    2. If you use .png files then the alphamask should be included in the animation image. Any transparent -or semi-transparent - parts will be transparent - or semi-transparent - as they are in the image.

    3. what sort of puzzles & do you mean with lua script? editor action parts? or possibly a combination of the 2? I have no idea if there will be any tutorials (text or video); that would be up to myself, other members of the community or the VS team.

    4. I have no idea, if or when this will be implemented, but it will more likely than not require a bit of lua script to achieve it.

    5. Visionaire Studio (paid versions) have an export/build option. You can export/build for various platforms. It doesn't matter if you are working via windows or mac osx - possibly linux in future release. Some of the export/build options are a bit limited at the minute as they are in beta & thus require you to do a bit of manual configuration & so on. See here.

    6. No you do not have direct access or support from the Visionaire Studio dev team. You can post bugs, .dmp (dump files) & .ved files & other such things here or send a message to one of the devs to see if they would be willing to help you.


    Thanks, In regards to your answers:

    1. I am talking about the not so smooth screen scrolling that follows the character. It somewhat abruptly starts and ends and could use the option of some cushioning in the form of easing.

    2. Thanks, regarding the memory issue I guess it is a matter of trial and error to see how it goes.

    3. Any kind of puzzles, script only, mixed. etc. Just anything that could give a person a quick start and push them forwards. PnC adventure games without some kind of puzzles can become boring, as these add a nice contrast and break from all the talking, walking and picking up.

    I am aware that these need to be written by someone, nothing ever gets done by itself or magically appears smile
    I was just curious, does the VS team have a road map regarding these issues? As tutorials aren't done overnight I presume and need planning, and aren't done on a whim, it would be nice to know if there are plans for such operations. This would help me, weather to continue to develop my game "on paper", and keep lurking until or if the tutorials show up, or have an approx date when they will show up and perhaps start making a prototype.
    In any case it would make me feel more comfortable that tackling the complexity of creating puzzles will be easier, and make me more confident that I can indeed make the game I am planning on making if that makes sense smile
    As I am into animation and character design and not so much programming, coding does push me back a bit, which is why I am here after all smile

    4. Ok thanks. I guess it would come down to somehow looking at what "state" the character is in, for example: on click, check what "state" the character is in, for example "looking left", and then if the cursor click is on the opposite screen space, the "transition" animation is activated, the "looking right state" is activated and then the character moves right.
    I know its easy to describe and harder to code.

    5. Yes I have read the licensing of Visionaire, and I am aware of the modules.
    I am also aware that the AppStore is quite picky when it comes to games (or apps in general), thus interested in exporting from PC to their store. I have been doing a lot of research through out the year into different programs, and publishing into the AppStore.
    Just curious has there been a game that has been published in the AppStore, and the story behind it? Was it smooth with Visionaire? If not I guess we will only know once a couple of games have been accepted. Which is fine as it is in Beta as you mentioned.

    6. I was curious because of the watermark that needs to be placed before publishing a game: "Powered by Visionaire" , which lead me to think that Visionaire helps out with bugs.

    Just curious, is the team considering a license where they take a percentage of the sales of the game, in exchange for support with game bugs? Or is this not feasible?

    Once again thanks for taking the time to answer.

    Cheers.

    Newbie

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  • #4, by afrlmeSunday, 22. June 2014, 17:48 6 years ago
    Visionaire Studio 4.0 had a major overhaul & thus the memory management is a lot better than previous versions. You can now use larger animations with more frames without too much of an issue. Also if you create the game at 1920x1080 then you can export out at smaller resolutions for iPad etc & there is also the version to compress the images with webP to further reduce the amount of power/memory usage.

    I hope that helps put your mind at ease about memory side of things? having said that I do not recommend using large animations with a lot of frames; especially if you plan on having quite a few animations on each scene as they will take some time to load/preload. In 4.0 you can actually monitor (real-time) the amount of power/memory being used via the console interface (home key) while running the game via the VS editor.

    I believe that the non-smooth scroll issue could be resolved via a bit of lua script trickery by having it listen out for when scrolling is to start & then have it increase the speed from 0 to full speed over x amount of time & in reverse for nearing destination.

    In regards to the puzzles... if you can't figure something out on your own, then do not be afraid to ask for help in the forum. Myself, one of the other members of VS team, or one or more of the community members will probably be able to point you in the right direction.

    Myself & the VS team have nothing to do with tutorials. They are usually made by members of the forum community. Although SimonS is apparently considering making some video tutorials at some point or something. I myself provide support on here & via documentation on the wiki & occasionally I may provide support by looking over your projects (if they are shared to me).

    I don't know about any easy ways to emulate character turning right now; well not without a lot of coding. Alex said he was going to implement a new hook function which would make it easier to write a small lua script to turn the character. I have no idea if it has been written/implemented into the upcoming release or not.

    I don't know much about releasing to the mac/ios app stores. & I doubt anyone on here has released on them yet. So I guess you will just have to wait for now. Or maybe ask Daedalic.

    No the watermark is not really a watermark. It's just a splash video you would play at beginning of your game or a logo placed somewhere like on the box art, menu or in the game credits. Most development companies & individuals usually show a splash video or logo somewhere to say which game engine they made their game with. It does not mean we will provide dedicated bug support to you for free or a fee.

    If anyone were to get bug/dev support then it would more likely than not be the people who have purchased the pro license for their commercial game; but even that is not guaranteed. It's very time costly & VS dev team is only comprised of 3 people at the minute.

    Actually... Before the current licenses, Thomas created some other licenses that actually included a royalties tax thing, but it didn't go down too well with the majority of the community & thus he created the current license models, which were lower in price & without the royalties tax. It would have been quite a difficult challenge to monitor royalties tax owed anyway.

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  • #5, by JakubSunday, 22. June 2014, 18:20 6 years ago

    Thanks for the comprehensive and detailed answers smile I appreciate it.



    No the watermark is not really a watermark. It's just a splash video you would play at beginning of your game or a logo placed somewhere like on the box art, menu or in the game credits. Most development companies & individuals usually show a splash video or logo somewhere to say which game engine they made their game with. It does not mean we will provide dedicated bug support to you for free or a fee.


    Yes, my mistake, I meant splash screen, as it is different to watermarks as you correctly stated.
    Well to be honest if a company doesn't have to show a splash screen, it wont. It is not a matter of hiding, just it looks a bit more "professional", if you know what I mean. Why else would Visionaire need to direct the users by a binding agreement to show the splash screen? smile

    Correct me if I'm wrong but Deponia didn't have a Visionaire splash screen? I know because it took me ages to find Visionaire smile
    And it was Deponia that triggered me to look, as I wanted to created a PnC adventure game for some time now, but didnt find the appropriate tools.
    Somehow Deponia gave me the feeling that it had been done pretty much in a WYSIWYG program instead of all scripting or a framework that was build in-house and unavailable to the public. Once I found VIS I knew I was right smile

    Anyway, not bashing the idea of the splash screen, just saying smile



    Actually... Before the current licenses, Thomas created some other licenses that actually included a royalties tax thing, but it didn't go down too well with the majority of the community & thus he created the current license models, which were lower in price & without the royalties tax. It would have been quite a difficult challenge to monitor royalties tax owed anyway.


    Yes, Ive read the other threads about the previous licensing methods, and the community's reactions.

    In a nutshell, I think that to keep track of the loyalties, a mutual account would have to be opened - with both Visionaire team and the team that created a game, preferably in one country, weather it would be in Germany or the other country where the other company is located, and both parties would have to sign documents to withdraw money, so that it could be shared etc. Difficult but not impossible.

    But it goes without saying that I prefer the license like it is now, after the changes and without the percentage smile Unless of course there would be bug support etc, but as you said this isn't likely lll just drop the subject.

    Seems Ill keep lurking a bit more and look forward for the mentioned updates. I am all about adding that extra polish to the game (making it smooth and closer to watching a cartoon/movie). It does make that little difference that takes the game to a whole new level, even if subconciously only.

    Cheers

    Newbie

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  • #6, by afrlmeSunday, 22. June 2014, 18:40 6 years ago
    The splash video &/or branding logos in other engines such as unity/udk for instance are not set in stone, the users of those engines do not have to add the logo/video whatever to their games but they tend to do so out of respect of & in support of the engine that powers their game.

    In regards to Deponia & Daedalic in general... We didn't really have any official splash videos or logos back then. Sure there was a low res video included with the download of Visioniare Studio which could be found in the "res" folder. But it wasn't mandatory & besides, Daedalic have always purchased the commercial licenses for their games, which has no limitations or restrictions at all. I'm sure they would have added a logo/video if we had one or asked them to - well probably.

    I'm not saying that the bug/dev support couldn't possibly happen. David spent a lot of time providing support for Daedalic, but it took away a large amount time & attention from the development, improvement & bug fixing for the engine itself & with only 3 official dev team members (at the minute) it just isn't feasible for any of them to dedicate time on bug fixing or features for any specific individual or company. If enough money was offered to make it worthwhile, then I guess they might... apart from that, or more dev team members then it is highly unlikely.

    Instead of royalty tax thing I would like to try & get Thomas to add some kind of subscription service for the first 2 licenses, similar to what UDK do, at some point in the future as I think it would be beneficial for students, kids, & other people with low income that can't afford to chuck a lump sum of money at something in one go. I hope he would consider it as it would create a steady flow of income to the VS team each month while appealing to more potential clients for a small monthly fee; instead of €49/€99 here or there every so often.

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  • #7, by SimonSSunday, 22. June 2014, 18:41 6 years ago
    For scene scrolling interpolation, a rewrite is scheduled, but at the time there is no time wink It is scriptable with Lua, but that would need the same amount of programming skills as if we do it ourselves.

    Every image you load will be converted to RGBA, so an alpha channel will always be present, so you can do anything you want with that.

    I have thought about doing some advanced tutorials, because that's what really misses. There are a lot of beginner tutorials, some code snippets, but riddle design and minigames are left out. Maybe that's because there is coding necessary. But at the moment I don't find the time and motivation...

    Turn animations are often wished for, I myself don't work on them, maybe we add something like that for 4.1 or so, won't be in the final. Daedalic used some Lua made transitions in Night of the Rabbit, but that's pretty advanced.

    Of course we will fix your bugs, but normally you would then need to wait for the next release, except you convince us to do that earlier wink

    For now, I don't see that any games build with Vis can be put in the AppStore, you will need the an authorized developer for Apple, so you will need a Mac. We haven't come across that case yet, soon some Daedalic games, maybe. Android the same, authorized Google dev. For now it's that you can play your games on mobile devices.

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  • #8, by JakubSunday, 22. June 2014, 19:02 6 years ago
    The splash video &/or branding logos in other engines such as unity/udk for instance are not set in stone, the users of those engines do not have to add the logo/video whatever to their games but they tend to do so out of respect of & in support of the engine that powers their game..


    Some do, some don't. Some people like apples, some like oranges smile I would argue that more people wouldn't. But that's just my opinion, and it is what it is, only an opinion. So VIS team is smart here, setting the rules as they set them smile


    In regards to Deponia & Daedalic in general... We didn't really have any official splash videos or logos back then. Sure there was a low res video included with the download of Visioniare Studio which could be found in the "res" folder. But it wasn't mandatory & besides, Daedalic have always purchased the commercial licenses for their games, which has no limitations or restrictions at all. I'm sure they would have added a logo/video if we had one or asked them to - well probably.


    Just to be clear, my intention was not to hold this against Daedalic, the fact that there wasn't a VIS splash screen. I was just pointing out what I have noticed. All is good.


    I'm not saying that the bug/dev support couldn't possibly happen. David spent a lot of time providing support for Daedalic, but it took away a large amount time & attention from the development, improvement & bug fixing for the engine itself & with only 3 official dev team members (at the minute) it just isn't feasible for any of them to dedicate time on bug fixing or features for any specific individual or company. If enough money was offered to make it worthwhile, then I guess they might... apart from that, or more dev team members then it is highly unlikely.


    Of course, certain points would have had to be outlined, either regarding financial matters, so that the VIS team would profit in financial terms, or in sales success, so that helping take the bugs out would help market the game and thus market Visionaire.
    Both ways, a win-win situation for both parties concerned.

    I addressed the bug issue, because Deponia had a lot of rumors of people having mainly display problems, and a lot of comments that I had read were pointing out that people werent pleased.
    Now if I would face something similar, and wouldn't be able to cope and straighten out the quirks and bugs, is it really worth getting myself knees and elbows deep in game production, only to fail with the game not working on some machines due to hardware differences and incompatibilities? Which would lead me no doubt to some bad reputation.

    Now I dont know if the rumors were true or not, just pointing out what I had read, and what is true to my information source, which was reading a bit here and a bit there. Again not holding anything against anyone.

    The fact that VIS team helped on Deponia, did help them with their success for sure, as it did help with making Visionaire have a reputation of being able to port such great titles. On the other hand if the bugs werent fixed, imagine what would happen to the brand?


    Instead of royalty tax thing I would like to try & get Thomas to add some kind of subscription service for the first 2 licenses, similar to what UDK do, at some point in the future as I think it would be beneficial for students, kids, & other people with low income that can't afford to chuck a lump sum of money at something in one go. I hope he would consider it as it would create a steady flow of income to the VS team each month while appealing to more potential clients for a small monthly fee; instead of €49/€99 here or there every so often.


    Its obvious that a steady cashflow for the VIS team would benefit the overall software development, and would increase the chances of implementing the "smooth animation turn transition" smile smile smile wink hint hint! wink

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  • #9, by JakubSunday, 22. June 2014, 19:22 6 years ago
    Thanks for the reply smile

    For scene scrolling interpolation, a rewrite is scheduled, but at the time there is no time wink It is scriptable with Lua, but that would need the same amount of programming skills as if we do it ourselves.


    Any idea when? Just an approximate to put things in perspective.


    Every image you load will be converted to RGBA, so an alpha channel will always be present, so you can do anything you want with that.


    Thanks smile


    I have thought about doing some advanced tutorials, because that's what really misses. There are a lot of beginner tutorials, some code snippets, but riddle design and minigames are left out. Maybe that's because there is coding necessary. But at the moment I don't find the time and motivation...


    Yep, there is a gap in this area. I have searched for some info on puzzle implementation in LUA, seems to be somewhat of a hassle.
    Would be great to have a couple of templates, and to be able to build upon those. The motivation behind this is getting more animators and illustrators dive into VIS - thus more potential customers and sales, and an increase in visual game quality.


    Turn animations are often wished for, I myself don't work on them, maybe we add something like that for 4.1 or so, won't be in the final. Daedalic used some Lua made transitions in Night of the Rabbit, but that's pretty advanced.


    4.1 - Nice! I am keeping you to your promise! wink smile


    Of course we will fix your bugs, but normally you would then need to wait for the next release, except you convince us to do that earlier wink


    That is great to hear!!!!
    Hopefully the sales would do the convincing, not me haha razz. Not that I am that confident (maybe just a little wink)


    For now, I don't see that any games build with Vis can be put in the AppStore, you will need the an authorized developer for Apple, so you will need a Mac. We haven't come across that case yet, soon some Daedalic games, maybe. Android the same, authorized Google dev. For now it's that you can play your games on mobile devices.


    Exactly what I was talking about. Probabililty is, that to publish on the AppStore and on a Mac, one would need to develop the game on a Mac. Perphaps some sort of exporting module from Pc to Mac in regards of VIS files could be possible.

    Cheers

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  • #10, by afrlmeSunday, 22. June 2014, 19:30 6 years ago
    What sort of display problems? I don't tend to follow posts/news written on game blogs & magazines, too often.

    Sure it benefited both parties - I guess. The truth is that besides Daedalic, most of the other studios & individuals mostly purchase the indie licenses, with the odd exception of certain titles/studios such as Chris Bischoff's game STASIS... hence the income would be mostly made up of an individual or small team purchasing the single/multi-user licenses once in a blue moon. Pure speculation on my part.

    The thing about the bugs is that they will more likely than not be engine related unless it is down to how you have setup something in the editor. If it is the latter then, that would be your problem to iron out. If it is engine related then you can submit a bug report & see if it gets fixed for the next engine update. The plan is that from the 4.0 final release (onwards) to release small updates more regularly with bug fixes & small improvements & a larger update every so often containing improvements, bug fixes & possibly even a new feature or 2.

    Let's just forget about the splash/branding stuff for now eh? & I never implied that you were holding anything against Daedalic. They can do whatever they want I suppose - as long as they keep purchasing the commercial license for their games! wink wink razz

    P.S: if you mentioned what sort of puzzles you were after then I could - if time allows - probably write up & share some scripts & mini-text tutorials to the Visionaire Studio wiki. Simon could be right in the lack of tutorials for puzzles & mini-games being due to the fact that they are not always that simple to make & quite a few will probably require some complex if else queries or even lua script to make them work. It is lua by the way & not LUA. It's not an abbreviation or acronym of anything particular. It means moon in Portuguese. smile

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  • #11, by JakubSunday, 22. June 2014, 20:34 6 years ago
    What sort of display problems? I don't tend to follow posts/news written on game blogs & magazines, too often.


    From what I recall, some people had black screens upon loading the game, others had crashes once they finished a part of the game (black screen too if I recall correctly). One person from what Ive read had problems after replacing their graphics card. So probably mainly to do with drivers from what I can tell.

    Scary for an indie that focuses on the visual aspect rather than the programing side of things razz but again, I guess this would have little to do with the user and more with how Visionaire works on these graphic cards.


    The thing about the bugs is that they will more likely than not be engine related unless it is down to how you have setup something in the editor. If it is the latter then, that would be your problem to iron out. If it is engine related then you can submit a bug report & see if it gets fixed for the next engine update. The plan is that from the 4.0 final release (onwards) to release small updates more regularly with bug fixes & small improvements & a larger update every so often containing improvements, bug fixes & possibly even a new feature or 2.


    Well if it would be my problem, I would guess it would have to do a lot with me programming in Lua, which is why I am a bit hesitant, getting into Lua without scripting tutorial guidance that is.


    Let's just forget about the splash/branding stuff for now eh? & I never implied that you were holding anything against Daedalic. They can do whatever they want I suppose - as long as they keep purchasing the commercial license for their games! wink wink razz


    I did not imply that you implied that, just wanted to make sure that it was only an neutral observation, regardless of what was said.
    Apologies if it stood out as otherwise.


    P.S: if you mentioned what sort of puzzles you were after then I could - if time allows - probably write up & share some scripts & mini-text tutorials to the Visionaire Studio wiki. Simon could be right in the lack of tutorials for puzzles & mini-games being due to the fact that they are not always that simple to make & quite a few will probably require some complex if else queries or even lua script to make them work. It is lua by the way & not LUA. It's not an abbreviation or acronym of anything particular. It means moon in Portuguese. smile


    That is very nice of you to offer help smile
    You can be sure Its not that I would want to have people code the puzzles from scratch and make them complete, just show a signpost to where one should head. Otherwise it would be more fair to take someone aboard to make the coding smile.
    More of a documentation, or perphaps templates for sale?
    Perphaps selling the templates in the shop would be a neat idea?

    Well, the puzzles I had in mind weren't something incredibly complex or original, just the standard puzzles that give the person a breather.
    Similar in function to ginger while eating sushi, to simply clear the gamers "taste buds" if you will smile
    So perhaps:
    1) a puzzle as in solve the jigsaw puzzle, (perhaps after finding the pieces in the game - or not),
    2) a sequential puzzle, do something in the correct order, for example match the sounds in the correct order. This would also work in puzzles where folks need to press the buttons/levers in a correct order. This would branch out into a lot more different puzzles. A lot more.
    3) a puzzle with similar functionality like the pipes in "A Whispered World", where you have to close the circuit (the pipe puzzle), so basically on pressing the state of the image would change and the ID of it would change to suit the ID that has been programed, each image being a different ID. So again simmilar to the second puzzle.


    PS. Regarding Lua, I did do some reading so I was aware behind of the meaning, more of a typo than anything else smile
    No doubt it is a derivative of the word Luna, which stands for the moon goddess as well as moon in Latin, which went on to become Lunar in English and probably Lua in Portugese smile

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