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Timeframe for EXE exporter?

  • I know this isn't something you guys at Scirra like to be badgered about often, but... I'm sort of at a crossroads right now, and to put it simply, the answer to this just might impact what I devote the next year of my life to. Not that that affects any of you much, but it's worth noting. <img src="smileys/smiley17.gif" border="0" align="middle" />

    I guess to reword it, my question is: if all goes as planned, will it be implemented within one year from now?

  • We don't have a plan extending as far as a year, so I just can't say.

    However, if WebGL becomes widely supported and the Web Apps standard keeps progressing, I'm wondering if we'll need an EXE exporter at all. If C2 games are running with a hardware accelerated WebGL view complete with shaders, using javascript engines that are compiled to machine code and using the new Web Audio API for reliable audio with effects... what need is there for an EXE exporter?

  • I'm still looking into all of the details of it, but I'd be most interested in getting my game onto Steam. I could be wrong, but the things I'm seeing so far seem to say that your game needs to be an executable file for you to do anything with the Steamworks API. Again, I could be wrong, and I'm still actively reading through more information in hopes that I am.

    Steam is nearly synonymous with PC games, especially indie PC games -- if executables are necessary to get a game onto it, that's a great reason in my opinion to get that option out there.

  • I don't actually want to join in on the constant demand for an EXE exporter. If I really do need to make a standalone windows game, Construct Classic does a fine job for now.

    Still Ashley's statement has me slightly worried. While it may be true that WebGL will eventually be widely adopted and browser games will improve massively in graphical quality and performance, a standalone executable game is still a whole different story.

    For the foreseeable future there will still be a demand for native win/mac/linux titles. I don't see massive fullhd 2d titles with tons of content running in your browser any time soon.

    Browser games are still best suited for smaller, more casual titles or ones that are directly integrated with some social network. While standalone games can be anything really and don't need to deal with the problems different browsers might pose and also can take much better advantage of the actual pc power.

    So what I'm saying is basically: one can't really replace the other, the scope is just different. And since I was under the impression Scirra was out to make Construct 2 the ultimate game development tool, not just the ultimate web game development tool, I'm very positive there should be an OpenGL exporter somewhere not too far down the road.

    Relying on a third party to do so would be a mistake in my opinion. I bet that the exporter would sell pretty well too. <img src="smileys/smiley2.gif" border="0" align="middle" />

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  • I'm not committing to anything just yet, I'm just talking about my ideas. For example, if HTML5 performance gets good enough that an EXE exporter can only get a 10% performance edge, then an EXE wrapper around the HTML5 runtime should be perfectly adequate (possibly with a plugin to access Steam API features). Writing a new exporter is a massive amount of work which will tie us up for months and require a lot of continuous maintenance work, which is a difficult decision when you're a small team with limited resources. So the EXE exporter would have to be significantly better to justify the effort, which is why if it's at all possible I'd prefer to recycle the HTML5 engine.

    Still, I think it's unlikely HTML5 will get that fast - I do think an EXE exporter for super-hi-performance games would still be a good feature.

  • I'm with PixelRebirth on this. Bandwith issues aside (speed, capping etc), just the simple fact that some users bought a license on the understanding that an exe exporter would be available at some time. The fact that you seem to be now moving away from this is not a good thing.

    Disappointing, if true.

  • Again, I'm not committing to anything, I am not saying there will not be an EXE exporter. My main point is if HTML5 has the same performance and features as the EXE exporter, why is it necessary? The Steam API is a good point and I'm sure something can be figured out there. I've been trying to think aloud to share my ideas with you. As I said, it's unlikely HTML5 performance will get that good, so there's still a good case to make an EXE exporter.

  • No stress Ash, I don't they are head hunting mate :)

    You guys best know what your priorities are, so stick to your guns.

    I have to now take this time to say, I would also like to see an EXE exporter in some form or another for C2 ;)

    ~Sol

  • I'm with PixelRebirth on this. Bandwith issues aside (speed, capping etc), just the simple fact that some users bought a license on the understanding that an exe exporter would be available at some time.

    I bought the license on that understanding. I am not for all the hype of web games. I'm not the kind of person for that either. I think an EXE exporter is something no game making suite should be missing, for many reasons. for the web to get as good as an EXE, could take years, and the reason why I like software like C2 is for speedy development. I cannot make my game as a web game, it simply will not work, not as of now or in the near future. My computer is not that powerful, when I run simple HTML5 games, they lag, and that just makes it not enjoyable, I don't even want to go near bigger web games, it would be a nightmare. On the other hand, my computer has no issues running EXE game at all, for example, PES 10 runs just fine and 2D games are no problem at all. Like me, there are many, whose computers simply do not live up to the expectations of today's standards, yet, EXEs have given me a chance to enjoy these games, that if they were web games, it would be an impossible task.

    EXE people and web games people, are very different. I'm the kind that casual gaming bores me to death. I would think attracting all kinds of audience it's a better deal than just one kind.

    I would wait a year for the exporter, but dropping it would be like a kick where it hurts. Also, I wish there was some third party individuals willing to do the exporter.

    EXE Gaming != Web Gaming, it's just as simple as that.

  • I can understand why some of you are a little upset by the fact that an EXE exporter is still under consideration, but I think I can speak for most here when I say:

    If you want to make EXE games, then you should be using Construct Classic, especially at this point in time.

    CC is free, and works just fine.

    If you feel bad about buying C2 on the premise it might, one day have an EXE exporter, then consider it a donation toward the development of both CC and C2.... and keep your hopes up. Ashley has not completely out-ruled an EXE exporter, so it's too early to be getting up in arms about it.

    ~Sol

  • I would like to react on what VampyricalCurse said, because, in my humble opinion, there are a few misconceptions and misinformations there.

    I bought the license on that understanding.

    There is a misunderstanding there for starters. In none of their communication has Scirra said that there would definetely be an EXE exporter.

    There has been discussions, expectations and requests posted about it, and each time Tom or Ash expressed themselves about it they did in a conditionnal way.

    And still, as soldjah stated in his previous post, such an exporter is not ruled-out, but won't happen any soon anyway (that for sure).

    My computer is not that powerful, when I run simple HTML5 games, they lag, and that just makes it not enjoyable

    This depends on, as you said the computer hardware, but also on the software.

    Atm, browsers still have a lot of updates coming before we can talk about a "stable/definitive" version of HTML5 being implemented. This means, there is still room for developpement and improvement there.

    Also, apparently, some browsers don't do 2D acceleration (using graphic cards acceleration) in windows XP (source : r0j0hound's post).

    On the one hand, it is sad and indeed a large number of people may still use XP. On the other hand it is computer evolution as it has happened since computer exist.

    XP is now an obsolete OS (and I state this whereas I'm still using it) you have to realise that. If computer users want to keep up playing in good conditions, they have to evolve with the technology.

    Same for the OS.

    On vista (possibly) and 7, performances are here. And at worse, there is always the possibility of making the hardware evolve.

    for example, PES 10 runs just fine [...]

    EXE people and web games people, are very different. I'm the kind that casual gaming bores me to death. I would think attracting all kinds of audience it's a better deal than just one kind.

    Here's another misconception imo.

    You give the example of PES and then "shoot" on casual gaming as being narrowing in audience size ?

    It is the other way around in fact.

    Web gaming allows more people to have easily access with little knowledge/actions (no installation process, no file configuration, dependencies...) to fully playable games in a software they already have installed.

    Specialised/"hardcore" games (like your example of PES) are designed for "niche" audiences that "prepare" their hardware accordingly and are already involved/aware of the games requisites.

    What I mean there is that the more casual the game is, the wider audience it may hit/be accessible to at first.

    I will try a web browser of 1 Mo that will take 15 minutes of my time when I want as I want whereas I won't download 10+ gbs of PES which is a game I can't and don't want to devote time to. You may hit larger audience with casual, but niche will have a better retention ratio (as the games are meant to be designed for a specific niche audience).

    Just a misconception/missuse of terms there, no big deal, I just wanted to make things clearer.

    This is not really related to C2 anyway. I'm confident that with time and developpements from Scirra AND browsers company, HTML5 games will allow for great 2D (and possibly 3D with webGL (and silverlight surely :/ )) games.

  • You can be fairly sure that an exe will happen, based on the fact that C2 is built to be able to do that without any changes to the program itself.

    Yes it would suck if Scirra doesn't have a hand in that, but rest assured someone will take up that cause.

    What you really need to worry about is: how good will that be, and how much will that cost you? Long story short, time is money.

    One thing to think about is the advantages of having both. A mini version of your game to run in a browser, and the "epic" version on your pc at home.

    Its all about the audience. One way to bring the casual players in, another to keep them there.

  • In none of their communication has Scirra said that there would definetely be an EXE exporter.

    I guess a lot of us misunderstood.

    You give the example of PES and then "shoot" on casual gaming as being narrowing in audience size?

    I never said one audience is bigger than the other, I said it's a good thing to have both. Both are big audiences, and as yer post further proved it, very different from each other.

    If you want to make EXE games, then you should be using Construct Classic, especially at this point in time.

    If it comes down to it, I am gonna have to, or just simply give up. The reason why I haven't tried CC, is cos I have heard in several places, that is not good with big projects. If someone could shed some light on this it would be great. Also, what are the differences between one and the other, besides the obvious (CC and C2)? As of this moment, I am at a loss on what to do.

  • The main reason anyone says that it's not good for big projects, is because it can have it's drawback if you lack experience with it.

    You are more or less going to run into some problem or another, usually with the way something works (or doesn't work) and have to find creative ways around the problem. It is nearly always possible, and more often than not there are people here to help.

    I guess, be prepared to do a little learning with regards to "what not to do", and you can really make anything.

    Ideally start small, then see what can be accomplished. Maybe using CC as a learning platform may not be such a bad idea, since C2 works more-or-less the same way... it won't be "wasted training".

    ~Sol

  • Two questions regarding this topic:

    1) Will a web browser be able to play a huge open-world RPG, over a gigabyte in file size, aimed at computers with a minimum of 512mb of VRAM on their GPU (which may even be raised to 1GB)?

    2) Will these HTML5 games be possible to sell on the Steam store?

    If the answer to both is yes, then I could live without an .exe exporter in C2. If the answer is no to one of them, I would need to know that an .exe supporter is coming in the future (in the next 2 years) to use C2 for my project. If the answer is no to both of them, what are you smoking to think that you don't need a .exe exporter at all? That would cut off a massive potential market.

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