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Xbox Live Publishing

  • Has anybody published an Xbox Live game recently?

    I'm having trouble with incompatibility errors when opening up the UWP export in Visual Studio 2017.

    There's some confusing write ups out there.

    One recent Scirra tutorial claims C2 should be compatible with MS Visual Studio 2017, yet the recent write up on Xbox One publishing suggest Ms Studio 2015 Update 2, unless the write up hasn't been updated?

    In general, I think it's a good idea to go with the most recent version of a software, if it's compatible.

    Also, no idea how to do the SDK switching/targeting because C2 is supposed to target one SDK, but you get a different one installed with MS Studio 2017.

    A Scirra write up states C3 helps you with this, but is pretty silent on C2. I haven't been able to find anything from third party sources on this yet.

    When I tried downloading Ms Studio 2015 from Microsoft, they wanted me to pay for a pretty pricey subscription? And not sure how safe third party download sites are.

    Anyway, this is a smorgas board of information to navigate through on your own and I went through a similar nightmare with Android publishing (which I did eventually figure out from third party sources), so if anyone did this recently or knows how to do this to cut down my experimentation time, I would really appreciate it.

    Otherwise, I'll have to go through a zillion possibilities, which is pretty time consuming.

    --

    Update, there is a "free" version of VS Studio Community 2015 apparently which does install and access the project, but it does not install 2 redistributables because apparently I have more recent versions. These are things which do not make you feel warm and fuzzy when doing a build since I'm using some older software with some newer redistributables?

    I'm wondering why 2017 is incompatible even though a Scirra write up states it should work.

  • I got an update.

    I was able to install the Xbox Live package successfully via NuGet.

    But when I try to associate the project with the store I get this error:

    "Unable to associate project with store because the app manifest is invalid."

  • AmpedRobot I googled for that error and got these, do they help?

  • AmpedRobot I googled for that error and got these, do they help?

    Thank you.

    I ended up installing the latest Windows 10 SDK, as recommended from Quora, but that did nothing, probably because it did not install in the right directory or it may not be compatible with this version of VS?

    What worked was adding 0.0.0 to the version (after right clicking and opening the manifest file in VS 2015) and then installing Windows Tools and Windows 10 SDK (an older one).

    So the project now opens and plays on local machine.

    That being said, I do have some questions/concerns to make sure I don't have to do this a zillion times because it is very time consuming.

    Ashley

    1) Why won't UWP exports open in Microsoft Visual Studio Community 2017?

    This post dated June 27, 2017 by Scirra states they should:

    “Currently Visual Studio 2015 and 2017 are supported - older versions of Visual Studio won't work.”

    Initially, I installed VS Studio 2017 Community (I believe with Window Tools and the Windows 10 SDK) and when you open up the project in VS, it does not open up as a full solution, just states “incompatible” right next to the name.

    Ashley, could you test this to make sure it works now as intended?

    I ended up installing and reinstalling VS 2017 three times just to confirm. Same result.

    (Some people claim reinstalls fix everything).

    2) So are we stuck using VS Studio Community 2015 for now?

    3) I installed a student version of Vs Studio Community 2015. It comes as an iso image with all the updates supposedly and everything needed (base software). But it comes with Update 3.

    This post by Scirra, about a year old (I could not find anything more recent with specs), states you need Update 2 with Vs Studio 2015.

    Has Scirra tested C2 for Xbox Live publishing with Update 3 since then?

    4) If we are indeed stuck with Vs Studio 2015, the iso I downloaded from a Microsoft web site installed with errors:

    The KB3165756 Microsoft C++ Redistributable was apparently newer on my system, so it would not install the old one.

    Is this an issue?

    Should I install the new redistributable and let it install the old one?

    5) This post by Scirra states we should be using Edge to export UWP apps.

    I’ve encountered significant issues with Edge. First obvious one is the music, sporadically upon loads and quite often cuts out for the main game. Nothing fancy there. Just standard play code on start of layout. This NEVER happened with Chrome, so I exported using Chrome as preview browser. Is this an issue?

    The exported UWP opens in VS Studio 2015 fine and plays on local machine (haven’t been able to get it to play on the simulator yet).

    But it plays with issues. **Keyboard controls are slow and sometimes weirdly unresponsive.** Not sure if this is representative of the final product, but things like that were NEVER in the Android build in the XDK Intel simulator. Now, this NEVER happened in the zillion times I played the game via C2 using preview/Chrome, so I’m hoping this won’t end up playing like that in the final product. VS is supposed to do all sorts of code optimizations on the back end before packaging, so I’m hoping this won’t be an issue, but if anyone can chime in, or if this is a real concern and why, please let me know.

    Also, portions of the credit sequence sporadically cut out (just the front portion). This happened in the Intel XDK simulator also, so I ended up cutting the credit sequence for the Android build, but I want it in this time around (because it’s cool and has a cool track and adds to the game experience). Now why would it cut out in both simulators (and the final builds, which I so far only tested for Android), but NEVER a single time in the browser/C2 preview?

    My guess is corrupt code, which is a real issue in C2, but it’s a lot of code to rebuild from scratch. I would never recommend copying and pasting code from one capx to another, as recommended by some You Tube videos, because that has almost a 100% chance of creating corrupt code in my experience.

    Also, we could really use sequential saves in C2/C3 to avoid corruptions. I had one layout go corrupt when combining via another method (not copy and paste), but it was fixable as I had many backup copies and many different versions.

    Corruptions are nothing new. Both Autodesk Maya and 3ds Max have sequential saves to avoid these very issues.

    I got criticized once for using many subfolders by some crazy/angry devs here, but again they had no idea what they were talking about (so know before you open your mouth).

    And the simulators are often right on as far as the final build/product.

    6) Windows Tools and the Window 10 SDK for this version of Vs Studio 2015 (Update 3, not 2) installs with this SDK:

    10.0.15063.0

    This is the most current one:

    QFE Build: 10.0.16299.91 - Released November 2017 (which I don’t have the option to retarget, even though I installed it from this site:

    )

    I do have the option to set this one as target via Project/Properties in VS:

    10.0.14393.0

    Which one should I be using and how do I retarget if it’s the latest one, even though I’m using VS Studio 2015?

    I don’t have the option to retarget by right clicking on the project in the Solution Explorer as I should per this post:

    Why?

    6) How often is testing done by Scirra with new updates/releases since the posted recommendations to make sure everything plays well together? The posts are often dated and they make one recommendation, but they never state this version or this update *and above*.

  • AmpedRobot There are a lot of posts on Xbox here in the Scirra forums, you should do a search for "xbox".

    1) VS2017 Community with the latest update works, I use it. Sounds like you need to edit the .jsproj file, like I wrote here:

    2) Does the solution open in VS2015 without editing the .jsproj? That's surprising, but good to know if so.

    5) For Xbox One UWP html5 games, Microsoft uses the Edge engine, there's no choice here, you can't use Chrome with UWP.

    6) You can use the latest 16299 SDK, I do.

  • AmpedRobot There are a lot of posts on Xbox here in the Scirra forums, you should do a search for "xbox".

    1) VS2017 Community with the latest update works, I use it. Sounds like you need to edit the .jsproj file, like I wrote here:

    2) Does the solution open in VS2015 without editing the .jsproj? That's surprising, but good to know if so.

    5) For Xbox One UWP html5 games, Microsoft uses the Edge engine, there's no choice here, you can't use Chrome with UWP.

    6) You can use the latest 16299 SDK, I do.

    Thanks, Studio.

    That's very helpful.

    I'll give all this stuff a try today.

    As far as point 5, VS does play the file fine w/ Chrome export. Have you tried submitting through Microsoft certification as a Chrome export? I only mention because for my game at least, and the music part, Edge has serious issues. No idea how to fix. And first time I switched preview browser to Edge. No point submitting bug as it's just simple code that's supposed to be working and I have Windows 10, all the latest updates, and the latest Edge as far as I know and DirectX, but I will check.

    7) As far as 6), the newer the SDK I target, the worse the game plays in VS 15 on local machine AND as a release configuration. Basically it's sluggish and keyboard controls become sporadically responsive. It's a very noticeable difference. The oldest SDK my current VS 2015 install allows me to target is 10.0.14393.0.

    The others I tried which are progressively more sluggish are:

    15063

    and 16299.

    So something is definitely going on.

    I Googled and tried to download, but couldn't find:

    Windows 10 SDK version 10.0.10240.0

    as this post at least suggests that's what C2 was originally designed to work with, even though it also mentions retargeting, but perhaps without extensive testing.

    10.0.14393.0 with VS 2015 plays almost like the C2 preview in the browser.

    So something is definitely going on.

    ---

    As far as lots of Xbox posts, I don't know about that. If there are issues with VS 2017, then the Scirra tutorials should be updated as a simple curtesy because that's the first place people look and they expect them to be accurate and on point.

    But from a cursory search now, it appears people are seeing performance issues before publishing even on very simple games?

    Is this also true on final games released on Xbox?

    I know it's a very broad question, applying to many different games, and that coding is sometimes an issue, but still any data would be helpful.

    And it also looks like almost everyone is going Xbox One as opposed to Xbox Live. Any reasoning behind it? Xbox Live audience is much bigger like 48 million and Xbox One is still very new.

  • AmpedRobot

    Chrome export does not produce a VS project. If you mean you can open the html and javascript files in VS, then sure, but you can't build a UWP game with that. That's unfortunate you're having music issues with Edge, but you have no way around it for UWP. I and other people are not having audio issues on Edge.

    I didn't notice performance get worse as the SDK got newer, so I don't know what to tell you there. But when you install VS2017, you can chose which SDKs to install, including 10240. I personally install 10240 and whatever the latest is, so currently I have 10240 and 16299, and not the ones in between. I target the latest, and I keep the min target at 10240.

    I agree the tutorial should be updated with the .jsproj editing steps, I added a comment at the bottom of the tutorial suggesting Ashley do so.

    Yes games run slower on Xbox One compared to PC, even PCs with fairly low specs. FYI if you get your game running on Xbox One, once it's on the Xbox run it directly from the Xbox, not from Visual Studio. When running from Visual Studio it is debugging and runs even slower, so run it directly to get the actual performance.

    Finally, what do you mean by "Xbox One as opposed to Xbox Live"? Making a game for Xbox Live usually means making it for Xbox One. Xbox One is 4 years old now, it's not new.

  • AmpedRobot

    Chrome export does not produce a VS project. If you mean you can open the html and javascript files in VS, then sure, but you can't build a UWP game with that. That's unfortunate you're having music issues with Edge, but you have no way around it for UWP. I and other people are not having audio issues on Edge.

    I didn't notice performance get worse as the SDK got newer, so I don't know what to tell you there. But when you install VS2017, you can chose which SDKs to install, including 10240. I personally install 10240 and whatever the latest is, so currently I have 10240 and 16299, and not the ones in between. I target the latest, and I keep the min target at 10240.

    I agree the tutorial should be updated with the .jsproj editing steps, I added a comment at the bottom of the tutorial suggesting Ashley do so.

    Yes games run slower on Xbox One compared to PC, even PCs with fairly low specs. FYI if you get your game running on Xbox One, once it's on the Xbox run it directly from the Xbox, not from Visual Studio. When running from Visual Studio it is debugging and runs even slower, so run it directly to get the actual performance.

    Finally, what do you mean by "Xbox One as opposed to Xbox Live"? Making a game for Xbox Live usually means making it for Xbox One. Xbox One is 4 years old now, it's not new.

    Do you mean I have to pick Edge as the preview browser? So far I picked Chrome and that's what I tested in simulator. About to try packaging the app. Then VS 2017.

    Well, you can only be in one program at a time for starters, so Xbox Live Creator's Program makes sense to being with? Plus I have different specs for deadzone for Xbox One based on testing, not by much, but the little definitely makes a difference on different controllers.

    And I thought the consoles were way superior to PCs? But no need to get into a discussion on that, but I thought they were configured specifically for gaming with multiple GPUs and what not unless NVIDIA won the war in price and video cards? If so, how are the consoles still alive? Never mind, I guess most people don't know and they love their pads, even though they can be used with PCs.

  • Ashley

    Are there any significant differences in the Xbox One/Xbox Live builds in C3 vs C2?

    Just wondering if there would be any performance issues/improvements in the bottom up engine rebuild.

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  • AmpedRobot

    No I wasn't talking about the preview browser. When you make an html5 game for UWP for Xbox One or Windows 10, the games are running internally using the Edge engine. So the packaged app will probably run similarly to when you preview the game in Edge, though you should test and make sure.

    By "Xbox Live" did you mean the Creators Program? Those terms are not equivalent, but ok now I know what you're talking about. I think many people here are releasing on Xbox One via the Creators Program, and that's what I did as well.

    Consoles are not way superior to PCs, especially for html5 games. To grossly simplify, html5 tends to be more dependent on the cpu, and cpus on PCs are better than the cpus in consoles.

    There should not be performance differences in the builds C3 and C2 produces.

  • AmpedRobot

    No I wasn't talking about the preview browser. When you make an html5 game for UWP for Xbox One or Windows 10, the games are running internally using the Edge engine. So the packaged app will probably run similarly to when you preview the game in Edge, though you should test and make sure.

    By "Xbox Live" did you mean the Creators Program? Those terms are not equivalent, but ok now I know what you're talking about. I think many people here are releasing on Xbox One via the Creators Program, and that's what I did as well.

    Consoles are not way superior to PCs, especially for html5 games. To grossly simplify, html5 tends to be more dependent on the cpu, and cpus on PCs are better than the cpus in consoles.

    There should not be performance differences in the builds C3 and C2 produces.

    Well, first time doing this, but I was told by Xbox people you can't be in both programs at the same time for starters, so you either pick the Creators' program for Xbox Live games or Xbox IDE/Xbox One, which has more stringent certification requirements that I'm totally clueless about, but the same game should work on both as a UWP app, so not sure why they separate this.

    Since you've already gone through this, let me fire a couple questions.

    1) Apparently, you went through the more stringent Xbox One/IDE program. How long did the certification take?

    2) Do you have access to an Xbox Live/360? Just wondering how many games are in the Creators program so far.

    3) Still can't open the project in VS 2017.

    What did you have to install at a minimum to get it to open?

    I did edit the project file to target the installed SDKs.

    First, I installed just the shell editor (like 586 megs), then the oldest SDK 10240 and the newest 16299 for UWP: C#, VB, JS and still can't get it to open.

    With VS 2015, I did like a 15 gig install (everything for the UWP Development, the first full workload on the first screen because I did not know what I'm supposed to be selecting (again it wasn't written up at all, so Ashley seems to be targeting developers rather than the "no programming required" crowd, as so often advertised, and, yes, that gets people without prior experience upset because they don't know what they're supposed to be doing. Are we supposed to guess?) In contrast, all the Microsoft tutorials have easy step-by-step lists for this process, which are fully up to date (hint, hint). Not being an asshole here. This is just the reality and I feel people are to often afraid to throw this stuff at Ashley. I'm not. Because I've already spent thousands of hours on this and my time is valuable.

  • I can now report the UWP export opens by default in R50 (just released) in VS 2017 (I did the 14 gig install).

    I was using R45 because I found it to be most stable.

    Also, R45 was released way after Visual Studio 2017 came out and the fact that it was incompatible wasn't mentioned anywhere.

    Wouldn't it be nice to have the full release notes so we know exactly what was changed and why?

    On a positive note, I can report a used 360 gamepad from the elite game set handles like a dream in the simulator with the default recommended deadzone of 25, so I think the game is good to go as far as Xbox (not sure about PC).

    It's only the keyboard controls which are sluggish, so maybe another SDK needs to be installed? (I mean the package does have a NuGet Xbox Live package installed, so maybe something else is needed for the keyboard controls like Steam has its own SDK).

    Thank you Studio!

  • AmpedRobot

    Xbox Live is not equivalent to Xbox 360. Xbox Live is also for Xbox One. I released a game for Xbox One, under the Xbox Live Creators Program.

    The other option is called "IDXbox", you should look it up. But to simplify, yes it has more stringent requirements. This is also for Xbox One. You can't make games for Xbox 360 anymore, for years now.

    I'm glad you got VS2017 working. It was working for me with r245 too, it's the version I shipped my game with.

  • Ok, then that is really weird.

    Because the C2 exported UWP only opened for me finally with R50 (I have not tested 46 to 49).

    Well, If anyone is interested, here's my simplified Xbox Live publishing list:

    1 EXPORT UWP FROM C2

    2 OPEN SLN FILE IN VISUAL STUDIO

    3 SELECT THE JS FILE RIGHT BELOW IT

    PROJECT PROPERTIES

    TARGET - LATEST SDK

    (install via program/features/modify vs

    individual components)

    MIN LOWEST SDK 10240 for now

    4 RIGHT CLICK SLN FILE ->

    Manage NuGet Packages

    Browse Tab

    Type in search Xbox Live

    select this package

    Microsoft.Xbox.Live.SDK.WinRT.UWP

    install

    5 R CLICK JS FILE

    Store-> Associate App w Store

    change any CPU in VS next to green button

    to x 64

    6 test in simulator

    hit green button

    play on local machine

    you will get an error

    but it will create

    appmanifext.xml file in bin/x64/debug folder

    7 open appmanifext.xml file in bin folder

    w notepad

    add .0 to version

    needs to be x.o.o.o

    exit and restart vs

    8 test in simulator

    hit green button

    play on local machine

    9 when ready

    double click package.appxmanifest

    and fix final details

    10 open appmanifext.xml file in bin folder

    w notepad

    add .0 to version again

    needs to be x.o.o.o

    11 when ready for upload

    R CLICK JS FILE

    Store-> Create app packages

    -------------

    "You can't make games for Xbox 360 anymore, for years now."

    Then why on Earth is C2 advertised as working best with the Xbox 360 controller? For the old Xbox 360 crowd connecting to pcs?

    This is really confusing. I mean Xbox One and Xbox 360 controllers are supposed to be exclusive to the 2 consoles.

    And new Microsoft Xbox One controllers play with C2, at least for me best with a deadzone of 20.

    Used Xbox Live 360 controllers, at least the Elite wireless one I tested, play best with a deadzone of 25, and yes there is a noticeable difference, and while users can sometimes modify these specs on their own with Google code depending on how their controller is performing, I would not gamble on everyone being able or willing to do this.

    Ok, so apparently I missed that the live program is only for Xbox One. ****So the old Xbox 360 crowd has no access to it via their consoles?**** If so, that is crazy. Why would Microsoft cut off such a large part of their audience?

    I'm dealing with something else that is pretty crazy. So far, I've only been able to do one perfect build of the game, with the errant portion of the capx always behaving as expected, but I've had to make a few minor changes to another portion of the capx (completely unrelated).

    Is there a way to splice 2 builds together? Because I don't know why that one is holy.

    I noticed there's a C2runtime.js file in VS. Is that where the event code from C2 resides? **Would any other files need to be copied over?**

    Of course, presumably the holiness would not be gone from them.

    Alternatively, I guess I will have to experiment with some more builds and hope the holiness carries over to one of the new ones, so I finally have a fully stable build for the Xbox 360 controller. (The new things I added were just time delays for clicking [see below]. This was not an issue with the Xbox One controller I tested I recall, so, if these games are only being made pretty much for the Xbox One crowd on their consoles, then I might just go with the holy build and be done with it (but scrap the Xbox 360 controller as being compatible). Of course, I did use a wired brand new Microsoft Xbox One controller connected to a pc, not a wireless one, so I'm hoping there would be no issues there??? But that might not be the safest course of action. Some built in delays (see below) are usually a good idea.

    I've noticed when using input from the Xbox 360 controller to advance layouts (on any button click), it's best to build in a delay, so the input does not advance more than 1 layout in succession. I've used 1 sec so far, but I have not had a chance to experiment with lower times that would work, which would make it look better, not like an input bug. ***Have you had a chance to experiment to see what the lowest delay time would be that would still work?** Basically, I just have a timer and a condition when time> or = 1 sec, that's when button press advances to proper layout on menu press, etc.

  • There's also 2 newer Xbox One/Xbox Live Nuget SDK packages, but VS won't let you install them even when you pick 16299 (the newest Windows one) as the sole target SDK.

    What is up with that?

    Are they supposed to be compatible with C2?

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