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      Game Development

      Case Study: Device Compatibility & Google Play Settings

      Case Study: Device Compatibility & Google Play Settings

      Without question, my favorite thing about the gaming community is the camaraderie with colleagues. It’s no secret that game developers of every level are often the real superfans of other independent game studios. 

       

      A great deal of the gaming community lives and breathes with this type of thought-sharing, feedback, and help. Every week, we receive questions from new friends and old, ranging from shared opportunities and game design feedback to troubleshooting and technical issues. Taking the more common, and thematic questions, and reusing them as blogs feels like a natural step for us, and broadens the number of developers we can assist. 

       

      The mini-case study below helps with a very small, but recurring issue that first game studios and game developers sometimes run into issues with: device compatibility settings.

       

      It’s often the case with beginners who are managing a store upload for the first time to miss a few steps. One of the most common is by not correctly configuring the Device catalog.

       

      If you look at the example below, you’ll see 15K+ devices supported from a project one of our senior developers uploaded.

       

       

      Here, you’ll see a similar project in the same month, and same version of Unity:

       

       

      With just under 5K devices supported, only 30% of the comparable above, something is wrong.

       

      In this case, the Game App API level is set to 23+. This means that Android devices must have that level of update to ensure compatibility, download, and play the game app.

       

       

      If you look at the package configured by the senior dev, you’ll see the difference:

       

       

      Set the minimum API level to 19 within Unity Player Settings, and you are good to go. 

       

       

      This confusion often starts because the Google Play upload dashboard will say that it requires the most recent API level to be uploaded. You do not have to set the minimum API level to be the latest. 

      Juicy Fog in Unity: A Mini Case Study

      Juicy Fog in Unity: A Mini Case Study

       

       

      Usually, I achieve fog by layering a decent amount of some low opacity fog sprites which are somewhat randomly scaled and rotated. The move slowly in random directions, and slowly change in scale and opacity over time.

      You can change the feel of the fog by changing the fog sprite assets themselves to be softer or harder-edged (or more/less detail) and by tuning the balance between the opacity of the fog particles and quantity. The more opaque they are, the less you need (lower emission rate), and the more "chunky" the fog will appear as a result. Less opaque fogs particles and more of them results in a more even distribution of fogginess (more smooth, less chunky).

       

      Here's an example fog particle system made that way:

       

       

      That's using this asset:

       

       

      And here's a variant using a softer fog asset:

       

       

      That used this asset:

      SpriteParticleCloudWhiteSoft.psd

       

      Here are the particle system settings I used there. Chances are, many of the settings will need to be substantially changed to fit the use case, but it can give you an idea. It's important to set the max particle size to something huge like 999, otherwise, unity may automatically scale the particle size based upon how big they are on camera. The max particle size there is really the "maximum size of particle in screen space at runtime".

       

       

       

       

       

      If it's low like at 0.5, it means their maximum size when rendered on screen would be 0.5, regardless of size settings elsewhere in the system. Important optimization and implementation related detail:
      There are two ways you can add a fog system like this to an area.
      1. Make it simulate in world space, and make its object a child of the camera object which moves around
      2. Make each simulate in local space (allowing them to be off-screen culled, unlike world space simulation) and make them a child of the level object. You define the areas they cover using the 'Shape' section of the particle system and adjust the emission rate to account for the amount of area covered

       

      You can set the simulation space in the particle system's main section, by gravity.

       

      With option 1, the particles will not move relative to the camera as the camera moves due to being in world space simulation, but the particles will spawn relative to the camera's position, which means the fog is essentially generated as the camera moves around, and the particles made where they camera used to be naturally go away. This works well with slowly moving cameras, because a low fog emission rate can easily keep up with the camera's slow position changing.

      It is also good if you're fine with the whole visible area being subject to fog in the same way visually (e.g, there's no place you don't want fog to be).

      This approach saves you the need from having to manually place and tune fog particle systems for the entire area, while still being decently efficient since it's one system moving with the camera, emitting a small amount of particles. You want to go with option 2 if you want to carefully control where the fog is, for example, if you never want it to display on top of a particular area such as a building or body of water. In DTs view angle, it may give more of a sense of depth to actually not have building rooftops occluded by fog, because it gives the sense that the roof tops are above the fog which is low to the ground.

      The main downside for 2 is that you have to manually place the particle systems and tune them by hand appropriately based upon amount of area covered. This is not so much a problem if the amount of space you have to deal with is small.

      You want to go with option 2 if you want to carefully control where the fog is, for example, if you never want it to display ontop of a particular area such as a building or body of water. In DTs view angle, it may give more of a sense of depth to actually not have building rooftops occluded by fog, because it gives the sense that the roof tops are above the fog which is low to the ground.

      The main downside for 2 is that you have to manually place the particle systems and tune them by hand appropriately based upon amount of area covered. This is not so much a problem if the amount of space you have to deal with is small.

      TLDR;
      Option 1 is good if you have a lot of content and little time to add fog to it, or you're fine with fog being everywhere on-screen.

      Option 2 is good if you want a lot of control over where the fog is and isn't, and is best if there's not that much content to treat this way. I think DT will look best with this option

      Twitch: How to stream Nintendo Switch

      Twitch: How to stream Nintendo Switch

       

       

      Got the vibe to stream the new Animal Crossing, or just about any other new Nintendo title? This is the guide that will teach you how to stream games from your Nintendo Switch!

      Although most of the latest generation of games consoles allow you to stream directly from an app on the console to Twitch, one of the more conventional methods of capturing game footage – whether for streaming or for video making purposes on YouTube – has been accomplished by using a capture card.

      Since the Nintendo Switch does not offer the ability to stream directly from the console, in order to share your gameplay you may need to invest in a capture card.

       

       


       

       

      Nintendo Switch Capture Cards

      You can find cheaper capture cards out there but these two are the gold standard of capture cards and are widely popular within the streaming community of Twitch as they operate on both Windows and Mac.

       

      Elgato Game Capture HD60

       

      Elgato Game Capture HD60 S

       

       


       

       

      Use the following steps to set up stuff, once you have invested in a capture card.

      How to use an Elgato HD60 / HD60 S
      capture card to stream
      your Nintendo Switch to Twitch

       

       

      1. Download the Elgato Game Capture software

      Either go to the Elgato website by yourself or click here to find the latest update for Windows of Game Capture.

       

      2. Dock your Nintendo Switch

      Since the capture card needs an HDMI port, in its base station you will have to dock your switch.

       

      3. Connect your capture card to your Nintendo Switch

      You have to plug your first HDMI cable into the docked Nintendo Switch HDMI-out port and plug the other end of the cable into the HDMI-in port on your capture card.

       

      4. Connect your capture card to your screen

      Now, go ahead and plug your second HDMI cable into the HDMI-out port on your capture card and connect the other end into the HDMI-in port of your TV/PC monitor.

       

      5. Connect your capture card to your PC

      Plug the USB into your computer and the other end into the capture card using the USB-C cable included with the Elgato capture card.

       

      6. Power up your Nintendo Switch, open Game Capture and OBS

      Set your OBS to window capture the gameplay once you've opened these, and you're ready to go live! It is worth double checking all your settings beforehand, as some of the defaults may not be suitable for setting up your stream to your specific needs.

       

       


       

       

      Having trouble with any of the Elgato capture products? For you to resolve them, they provided a ton of support pages to help you! Click here to check it out if you're struggling.

       

       


       

      Can you stream Nintendo Switch
      without a capture card?

      Nintendo Switch footage can be streamed without a capture card, but it does have other requirements of a comparable cost, in which case you are better off purchasing a capture card unless you already have the gear available.

      You can use the Xbox One to stream your gameplay to your Computer, which can then be window captured in OBS, according to reddit user u/kakysha. A link to his tutorial is here.

       

       


       

       

      There you have it! Your Nintendo Switch games can now be streamed to Twitch. If you are a console streamer, and this is your first streaming from a PC, you can be struggling to read your Twitch chat if you have only one computer screen. Have fun streaming your gameplays in your Nintendo Switch!

       

       

      Steam Controller Configuration

      Steam Controller Configuration

       

       

      How do I enable Steam Controller Configuration?

      1. Open the Steam application, and click the Steam in the menu tab.





      2. Once you've clicked Steam, select Settings.





      3. In the pop-up box, click Controller.





      4. Once you've clicked the Controller, select General Controller Settings below the Controller Configuration.





      5. Place a checkmark in the box for your controller type.





      6. In the upper right-hand corner, open Big Picture Mode by clicking the icon.





      7. Once it's open, click the Library button.





      8. Select Bite the Bullet.





      9. Select Manage Game.





      10. Click the Controller Configuration.





      11. Click the Browse Configs button.





      12. Select the available standard controls config in the Recommended section.





      13. Click the Apply Configuration button.



       


       

       

      How do I disable Steam Controller Configuration?

      1. At the upper right corner of Steam, click on the Big Picture Mode button.
        This will open Steam Big Picture Mode, in full screen.





      2. Click on the Library button.





      3. Select Bite the Bullet.





      4. In the left-hand column, click on the Manage Game button.




      5. Click the Controller Options button.





      6. Click the Steam Input Per-Game drop-down box.





      7. Select Forced Off.





      8. Launch Bite the Bullet to confirm that your controller is recognized.
        Note: If your input is still not being recognized, you may need to relaunch Bite the Bullet.


       

      Setting up a Charity Live Stream using Tiltify on Twitch, Facebook or Youtube

      Setting up a Charity Live Stream using Tiltify on Twitch, Facebook or Youtube

      1. Create or sign in to your Tiltify account: https://tiltify.com/
      You can also use the Feeding America Tiltify URL:
      https://tiltify.com/feedingamerica/bite-the-bullet-1/start/type

       

      OR

       


       

      2. Click "Get Started," and search for the charity you want to support.
      You can register for Feeding America directly at:
      https://tiltify.com/feedingamerica/bite-the-bullet-1

       

       

      OR

       


       

      3. The platform lets you choose to support an event already happening for your selected charity, or it lets you register as an individual and support your charity directly.

       

      OR

       


       

      4. Enter the requested information.

       

       


       

      5. Click "Create Campaign" then "Publish Campaign"!
      (Before publishing, you may have to confirm your account via your email.)

       

      THEN

       


       

      6. In your Campaign's Dashboard, there are links where you can copy your Campaign URL for sharing and your Donate URL to put the donate button onto your Twitch page.

       

       


       

      7. Stream your game on a site like Twitch, YouTube, or Facebook.

       

       

       


       

      8. Share with your followers and on social media.

       

       


       

      9. RAISE FUNDS FOR YOUR CHARITY!