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Games Entertainment

Getting Started In Android Game Development 43

rbgrn writes "If you're interested in developing a game for the Android platform, there is a lot you need to know. If you have previous experience with game development, moving over to the Android platform won't be all that difficult. You will mostly just need to learn the architecture and API. If you're new to game development, here is a list of must-knows for getting started in Android game development. This is a good starting point for developers seeking to write any type of mobile game."
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Getting Started In Android Game Development

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  • Interesting... (Score:4, Interesting)

    by Darkness404 ( 1287218 ) on Thursday November 06, 2008 @11:00PM (#25670911)
    I really didn't consider it, but there would be a major market for an MMORPG for Android. Think about it, when you are waiting for a bus you can hop on to finish a quest, if you want you can receive alerts about your character at work and the keyboard would make typing messages easy. The only problem I see with all games for Android is all the phones that could (potentially) use it. For example, a phone with only a touch screen is going to demand a totally different form of input than a phone with both a touch screen and keyboard, as is a phone that is all buttons and no touch screen. And I can see this really being a limiting factor, does the Android marketplace allow you to "restrict" apps to certain phones or download different versions?
  • by corsec67 ( 627446 ) on Thursday November 06, 2008 @11:12PM (#25671025) Homepage Journal

    Learning how to write AI is out of the scope of this article but the general idea is that the AI will press buttons just like the user does.

    I hate games that don't do this. If the computer player and I are the same species, we should have the same limitations. Why should the computer player be able to do more stuff than a human player?

  • Re:Interesting... (Score:4, Interesting)

    by Opportunist ( 166417 ) on Thursday November 06, 2008 @11:36PM (#25671271)

    I've been rolling that idea around for a while now. Tossed ideas what could and what could not fly on a mobile phone.

    Basically what it ends up at is the mobile phone transfer rates and the amount the companies charge. We pay about 20 bucks for 5 Gigs worth of traffic. Ok, people might not play as much as they do with standard PC based MMOs, but then again, I'm sure they will. And 5 Gigs ain't that much traffic. Factor in the mostly horrible stability and unbearable lag and any kind of "normal" MMO is pretty much out, especially when you consider, as you have pointed out already, that input is usually by no means as easy as with PC games. Can you imagine trying the bard twist on the buttons of a cell?

    I'm currently toying with the idea of a turn based/real time hybrid game which would result in a rather slow pace. But then, I'm quite sure people are willing to accept slower gameplay since they're probably playing in a situation where they can't do anything "sensible" anyway, like waiting on a bus or riding it.

  • by Singularitarian2048 ( 1068276 ) on Thursday November 06, 2008 @11:45PM (#25671321)

    I'd like to see an RPG that uses the google phone's GPS feature to involve you in quests that blend real life and the video game universe. Perhaps certain tasks can only be achieved from a particular location in RL. Perhaps you are assigned to meet a particular player in RL in a certain location and achieve some goal together.

    This is like Hideo Kojima's game Boktai: The Sun is in Your Hand, which comes with a solar sensor for your Gameboy, and certain portions of the game cannot be completed without actual sunlight. However, GPS adds a lot of potential that hasn't been explored.

  • Re:Interesting... (Score:3, Interesting)

    by VValdo ( 10446 ) on Friday November 07, 2008 @12:31AM (#25671715)

    This is slightly offtopic, I actually did some research for nethack for Android. Found this thread [], and if you look on sourceforge there are a few java implementations of rogue-like games. Of course, with the supremely awesome ConnectBot [] (the ssh client) + screen, you can pretty much do anything consoley, including games like rogue, MUDS, etc.

    To get back ontopic, Android is actually a cool little platform to learn to program Java in. I've never programmed a line of Java before or ever used eclipse, but after reading the first few chapters of thinking in Java [], downloading and installing the SDK on my mac, reading the SDK documentation, and asking tons of dumb questions in #android (freenode), I got my first little all-text game going in about a week and a half.

    Seems like right now when everything is now there is so much good stuff that can be done with Android-- so much "low-hanging fruit" - simple apps that people would love to have if only someone would write it.

    Lovin my g1,

  • Re:Slashvertisement (Score:3, Interesting)

    by g0dsp33d ( 849253 ) on Friday November 07, 2008 @07:15AM (#25673697)
    Really? Anyone on Slashdot should have enough experience to know coding something that complex is hard, whether it be first-hand or not. Especially when it is for this type of hardware platform. Hell, half of us probably tried making a game at some point. I tried making Pacman in high school and Tetris in Visual C++ / Opengl in college. Neither were as easy as they sound, and that was for relatively simple games on relatively homogenized systems.
  • by Dan East ( 318230 ) on Friday November 07, 2008 @12:53PM (#25676967) Journal

    Nice. As a side note, ATI contracted me to do the Quake GS OpenGL ES conversion a few years ago (the NDA has expired). I got to fly out to one of their labs in California to do performance tuning with the guy who drafted the OpenGL ES specification. It was a nice experience.

    As another side note, I had asked the marketing guy who arranged for me to do the conversion (it was done, along with MotoGP by another group to market ATI's new mobile 3D chipset) to not release the source. It was of course GPLed, and since ATI was only demoing it on their own hardware and not distributing the executable, the source did not have to be released. I wanted to contact Id about potentially marketing the game. The ATI marketing guy's contract ran out, so someone else started demoing it. That person handed the source code over to the first guy that came along. He ended up contacting me with some questions about it, which is how I found out. I told him that he would have to release the source if he distributed the game since it was GPLed. He had already flown to Id headquarters and met with Todd and had a contract in place. He then changed what he said, and told me that my work was crap, and he had another programmer totally redo the conversion (which is complete BS). I have proof that their version still incorporates that code that I modified and added under the GPL. In Quake GL the particle textures are hardcoded into the engine. They used a simple square texture which looks exactly like what was done in the software engine (a square particle was used in the software renderer purely for performance). I thought it looked particularly poor having a square particle, so I made it into a more rounded, diamond-like shape. That is what is in their version to this day.

    So if the version of Quake you're talking about is from Pulse Interactive, then thanks, I'm glad you like my work, and you were seeing software running in violation of the GPL.

... though his invention worked superbly -- his theory was a crock of sewage from beginning to end. -- Vernor Vinge, "The Peace War"