Will Construct ever be able to target consoles?

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  • I'm not meaning to start some sort of negative thread but I am just curious about the future of Construct as it applies to consoles.

    Today Gamemaker2 just announced support for PS5 and XBSX/S and it got me thinking... twitter.com/YoYoGames/status/1364142213140254720

    Will Construct ever be able to do this? Is it even something that is being looked at, as maybe a future possibility? Or is the architecture of an HTML5 engine just a no-go and won't ever happen?

    I'm not exactly sure what a service like Chowdren actually does, but could some sort of backend process be made? Is this beyond the Scirra team's scope/interest/manpower/roi?

    Gamemaker charges $800 for a 12 month license to be able to export to just one type of console. So I understand its not for everyone. But I would love to have this option.

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  • "You should ask nintendo to support html5 games" rsrsrsrsrs

  • Im guessing that if Scirra were to try to add console support they would have to charge for it.

    You have the gm $800 as your starting indicator.

  • that's what I mean, I'd pay for it...

  • There are several companies that can help you to port your Construct projects into console games (all of the XBOX, Playstation and Nintendo consoles).

    You can also buy/rent to tools and do it yourself if you want to.

    But Scirra and their small team will not develop the exporter themselves.

    If creating PS5/Xbox games is what you want to do mainly I think other engines is more suited than C3. But gamemaker will cost you $1500 a year for example. But still, it will require a lot more than a license to be successful on console, and the license fee will not be the hardest part..

  • fredriksthlm

    obviously having the ability does not equate success, I'm not even talking about having success. That's a whole other topic!

    You can also buy/rent to tools and do it yourself if you want to.

    this part interests me. Is it viable to develop in C3 and make your own exporter as someone who hasn't done it before? What is the difficulty curve/time of investment on this?

  • Construct does have a built-in export to Xbox One. And, as far as I can tell, virtually nobody uses it. Posts like this are always a little mystifying to me: we do actually support this for Xbox One, but it's not mentioned at all by anyone - everyone acts as if there's no console support whatsoever.

    My best guess is everyone already uses third-party porting services. And if you're using a porting service for, say, PS4 and Switch support, it's probably actually easier to get them to cover Xbox while they're at it. Hence, nobody is using the built-in option.

    I'm greatly concerned that we could do months or even years of extremely costly work and then still nobody would use the console option at all, because people have basically found a workaround in the porting services and will just carry on using them. I think the console makers are also fine with high barriers to entry: they want to make sure only high-quality content that can jump the hurdles gets on to their stores. Also if consoles don't have built-in support for HTML5 games, then given our dependence on browser technology, creating a highly compatible engine port is borderline infeasible, amounting to writing a significant chunk of a browser, which is normally done by huge corporations with thousands of staff. AFAIK, the third-party porting companies are just maintaining compatible subsets of the engine, and do bespoke work per-project to adapt them to work.

    The existing Xbox One support is based on JavaScript UWP apps, and as far as I can tell Microsoft are actually trying to slowly phase those out. So with such little usage, an apparent lack of on-going support, and the apparent failure for this option to even enter the conversation, I'm more inclined to remove this option and allow everyone to use third-party porting services instead. I would guess our efforts would be much better spent helping make life easier for the porting services - but so far they seem to be getting along fine without needing much from us.

  • I think it´s sad that it requires complicated porting in the first place, rather than a modern console simply supporting HTML5 with perhaps some sort of wrapper.

    I think the console makers are also fine with high barriers to entry: they want to make sure only high-quality content that can jump the hurdles gets on to their stores.

    Ehm, I´m not so sure if console makers got that message. There´s quite a ton of low quality stuff on the stores, like this absolute gem of a PS4 game.

    youtube.com/watch

  • I think it´s sad that it requires complicated porting in the first place, rather than a modern console simply supporting HTML5 with perhaps some sort of wrapper.

    Well, that's exactly what the built-in Xbox exporter does, and as I said it seems nobody uses it...

  • I can totally relate to what Ashley says about

    I'm greatly concerned that we could do months or even years of extremely costly work and then still nobody would use the console option at all

    We managed to port Construct 2 and Construct 3 due to some of our staff have been working on consoles since the GBA/NDS time, and we already had very complex C++ engines 100% console oriented.

    Some stuff is just way too different to have both PC / Console working at the same time without a big team and very very deep knowledge of console development!

    Also, consoles are 100% C++, and as Ashley also mentions the JS/Web options are been slowly been removed/deprecated =/.

    For example, one of the more common issues we see when porting is saving, due to consoles restrict a lot the way to "save" so we either need to fully re-do the saving code or adjust it so it complies with console rules.

    As said in previous posts, our technology supports PS4/PS5, XboxOne/SeriesX, and Nintendo Switch so, if anyone needs porting feel free to write :P.

  • Yeah there´s probably a handful of people who´d be interested in it and that interest doesn´t necessarily end up in actually releasing a game. I just tried exporting with it out of curiosity and got an error, who knows how long it´s been there and nobody ever noticed. Also I don´t really care :V

    I think the main console I´d ever be interested in is the Switch simply because it seems like a perfect fit for 2D games, but considering Nintendo used to support HTML5 for the WiiU and then dropped the support for the Switch, it´s very unlikely to happen. Same for Microsoft as you mentioned, once it´s gone it´s probably not coming back.

    Otherwise I´m fine with the export options especially since you don´t charge extra for them. (And yet you have people whine about how expensive C3 is)

    EDIT: ratalaika I´ve always wondered what a port costs at minimum. Like, I´m interested but I wonder if it´s worth it in terms of ROI.

  • EDIT: ratalaika I´ve always wondered what a port costs at minimum. Like, I´m interested but I wonder if it´s worth it in terms of ROI.

    We have many different options for very small indies, middle size indies and very big publishers. Our "very small indies" option is fully revenue-based so the developers doesnt need to put any $ up-front, I guess that makes the ROI for them good no matter the sales haha

  • Good to know! If I keep up the pace I might have some work for you in a couple of months :)

  • Well, that's exactly what the built-in Xbox exporter does, and as I said it seems nobody uses it...

    Microsoft shot themselves in the foot with the way they handled UWP, and their store front was also handled badly. Then when they decided to switch to Chrome we didn't have a clue as to what would happen to Universal Apps. Also third parties offering multiple platforms is a no brainer.

    Then again, cloud gaming offers the same thing, but everybody thinks that's a passing fad because of Googles bumbling.

    Is it?

  • I would guess our efforts would be much better spent helping make life easier for the porting services

    Ashley I was excited to hear you say this... as this is sort of what I was getting at with my follow-up post. How can this process be cleaner and more user-friendly? How do I as a solodev who does not have a lot of experience with porting or even exporting (except to Android and iOS) even approach this?

    but then I was sad by the end of the sentence:

    but so far they seem to be getting along fine without needing much from us.

    I guess I was hoping there would be a path for a Construct user to implement their own game on a console. But rather you seem to imply that Construct users should just hire third party people to help get their games on consoles. I would rather do this myself, but I literally don't even know where to begin or if it's even feasible - is this something I could do? Would it take 6-12 months to just learn how to do it? (time I don't have). There are no resources that I could find to help figure out if I should even attempt this - other than just hire someone and be dependent on them for game updates etc...

    Also note about exporters: The adage "if you build it, they will come" has to be taken in consideration. People don't use console exporters for Construct because there's only 1 (Xbox One) and the only thing I've heard about that it is, the framerate/performance is abysmal. I don't think it's fair to say: people don't use a low quality thing so therefore why would we invest in other similar things? I'm not suggesting native exporters, but I would love any kind of help on how I could take a path to porting to console on my own.

    Why would I invest time using the Xbox One exporter working when you say yourself they are going away from that? I wouldn't even attempt it - not only because of that, but because there doesn't seem to be any sign that a Construct to Xbox X/S series would be supported or any other consoles. That would be like just now investing in USB 2.0 devices. So that might explain why no one uses it. It could also mean Construct users don't make console-type-quality games.. but I don't know that.

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