Manifests

  • Hi!

    (Please notice, this is a long post. I think reading the full story casts some light on the problem. But if you want to jump to the end of the message, do it at your will).

    I use C2 with an early access license since the beggining of C2 (well, maybe not the beggining, but from v40 or so). I was reluctant to use C3 because C3 (early) yearly pay was bigger than the cash I paid for my lifetime C2 early license, and I only use C2 two months on a year (in Christmas and in July, when job load is smaller).

    Yes, I tested C3 in the early beta period, when you could try every feature, but I did it with a project that needed a plugin not still avalilable in C3, so I was disappointed with it.

    Then, I gave it a new chance last weekend using the gamejam license. I had an old project I wanted to convert for my smart tv. I wondered how things flow. I was really impressed how easy it was to export to android, without using third party services or installing Cordova and XDK along with an android NDK, as in C2. Well, the hosted compiling service really justified the recurring pay license.

    I used an hour to optimize my project to use a TV remote (the main difficulty was to find out how my not-well-documented project worked), five minutes to export it and... well, three hours to prepare the images, screenshots, descriptions and so on to export it to Amazon appstore.

    On the next day I found out a small bug I had inserted in my project, recompiled it and then, after sending it to Amazon appstore, I discovered the new version was getting a warning about not being compatible with the same devices. I had inserted a "when touch, mouse click or key down" in the first canvas, so my project was getting a implicit "usesfeature=touch" manifest tag, (I understand now the previous version did not get an implicit "usesfeature=touch" because it used touch, but not in the first canvas).

    I tried to unzip the .apk file and edit the AndroidManifest with a text editor, but I found that in current android version (26?) manifests are compiled (last time I had to edit a manifest, they weren't). So I had to install the 300+ Meg Android NDK. Yes, I could have instaled the SDK tools only. But they only work with the openjava-flavour of java installed with NDK -- they are no more compatible with Oracle java!!. I needed also the Cordoba plugin for NDK, the Gradle plugin for NDK, and even a previous version of Gradle because the exported android project required it (maybe because I was exporting an Android-21compatible app).

    So all the wonderful process of automagically exporting to android was broken simply because there is no way to modify the AndroidManifest.xml or simply expliciting that the Touch feature is not required (Indeed, I was adding keyboard/remote support to an app that allowed either touch or mouse access).

    I understand that Construct3 exports to many services, and not all of them support the same features on their manifests. I also understand that Construct3 uses Cordoba to export to Android, and it maybe Cordoba does not allow finetuning manifests. But adding a way to say which hardware features does the project really require would be wonderful.

    (Adding a feature to render and capture the screen in the many various formats required by the different app stores would be wonderful, too -- capturing a screenshot in the computer or mobile is way easier than doing it on a TV. Also, some thing that disappointed me, but I think it was on the part of Amazon App Services, was that I made icons for small screens and big screens. Amazon said my app worked on big screens only, while the manifest created by the exporter contained all possible screen sizes. I think Amazon was simply ignoring the manifest.)

    --- Cheers,

    Arcalaus.

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  • C3 suggestions should go here if you want the Scirra devs to know about them.

  • Thanks. Request submitted.

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