PLAYCANVAS in LUDUM DARE 31

Ludum Dare 31 has come and gone, but many great projects featured PlayCanvas over the course of the weekend. Here’s your round up for our involvement in one of the most popular Game Jams in the world.

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What is the Ludum Dare?

Remaining active for over 12 years (making it one of the longest Game Jams in existence) to this day LUDUM DARE is an event run by game developers for game developers. During a Ludum Dare, ‘developers from around the world spend a weekend creating games based on a theme suggested by the community’ competing for a grand prize of nothing. Crazy we know, but this grand prize is for good reason. Your prize is your product.

Ludum Dare 31 and PlayCanvas

Over the past weekend there was some great developing happening with PlayCanvas in the Ludum Dare. You can find the projects on our explore page but these incredible developers endured espionage grade sleep deprivation and probably experienced the full spectrum of human emotion. So for their efforts, we’ll happily give their creations some love.

The theme for LD31 was ‘Entire Game On One Screen’.

PlayCanvas user FELLADRIN made a colourful and thoroughly addictive balloon grabbing game called Ora Bolas! (seen below).

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CREFOSSUS incorporated sky high teddy bears and computer brain interfaces in his 3D conceptual game. You can dig into the crazy story behind his project by clicking here.

Winter Blasta twin stick shooter style game was also created over the course of the weekend. In this game you play a snowman in the unfortunate position of being subjected to wave after wave of evil, life draining snowmen. How long will you survive?

One game ‘jumped’ right into LD entry with Boing. Including things like super cool level transitions, the finished game is an incredibly fun side scrolling 2D style game. Why not check it out here?

While admittedly the finished version of Last Line of Defense is still in progress (post competition), one developer still managed to put together a fun tower defense game. Why not help this developer finish their game by commenting your advice in their devlog?

If you have enjoyed playing any of these games, log in on the Ludum Dare site and give them a well deserved vote on their respective Ludum Dare pages. You can also watch, star and comment on the games devlog via their PlayCanvas Pages. Replying to devlog posts in particular can really help the creator improve their project as you advise help them.

PLAYHACK December

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If you feel that a weekend is too much of a rush to take part in a game jam then we have a great alternative for you. Last week we started our second PLAYHACK, after some great entries in our first PLAYHACK.

Our game jams work slightly to Ludum Dare but only in the amount of time given (1 month in our case) and the fact that we provide the model for your game. If this interests you, then you can find out everything you need to know about PLAYHACK December in our introductory blogpost and maybe we will be talking about your game at the end of the month.

PlayCanvas Update 5/12/14

Its been a year full of huge announcements for us and the first iteration our Asset Store is certainly no small matter. From the PlayCanvas Store to a Ludum Dare deal (and everything in between), here’s what has happened at PlayCanvas over the past week.

PlayCanvas Store

PlayCanvas_Store

Today we launched the Beta version of the PlayCanvas Store! While the current version only has around 40 3D models in total, as the PlayCanvas Store grows we should hope to see thousands of game ready assets become available to our community. Try the beta for free at https://store.playcanvas.com/.

This preview version of the store features assets from 4 of our great partners:

http://www.propsplanet.com/
http://gamedevmarket.net/
http://cgtrader.com/
http://3dmodels-textures.com/

Soon we’ll be giving all of our PlayCanvas users the chance to become vendors, opening up their assets to over 20,000 PlayCanvas game developers. If you’re interested in becoming a vendor for the PlayCanvas store, please get in touch: sales@playcanvas.com

 

Features

Cubemap Textures

We now support cubemap assets. In turn have also deployed a cubemap editor which allows you to create cubemaps by assigning 6 images to each slot of the cube. To make your materials appear reflective you can reference a cubemap, then the material will reflect the sides of the cube (pending that you assign a cubemap to the Reflection section of a material).

Skybox Scene Setting

We also support Scene Skyboxes. Before if you wanted to make a skybox you needed an Entity with a skybox component, but now you can create a cubemap and then assign that cubemap to the skybox slot in the Scene Settings.

Material Upgrades

We’ve deployed more and more interesting features to the material editor. Look out for more big things happening here.

Particles

Our particle system beta is moving forwards. We’re getting close to releasing this for everyone. Get in touch if you’d like to try it out early.

 

Community

PLAYHACK December

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We are 4 days in to our 2nd game jam and this month you talented developers have a pretty appropriate model to play with. We’ve given you Santa and one of his ‘normal nosed’ reindeer to keep you company this December. Find out everything you need to know here.

Ludum Dare 31 – DEAL!

If a month seems like too long to make a game. This weekend is Ludum Dare 31, a 48 hour game making competition. It’s a great way to get a feel for the full process of imagining, designing, building and then shipping a game.

We’re running a special deal this weekend. If you enter Ludum Dare and complete a game using PlayCanvas we’ll give you a FREE PRO 15 account for a full year. Can’t say fairer than that! See the Ludum Deals page for more details.

 

Stay In The Loop

Follow us on Twitter, @playcanvas, for updates on PlayCanvas.

Like the PlayCanvas Facebook page for our whimsical views on the game dev scene.

Join and start discussions on the PlayCanvas Forum.

Get expert responses to your questions on PlayCanvas Answers.

PLAYHACK December: Jolly Santa

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If spending part of your December making a festively themed game doesn’t get you in the mood for the Christmas season, we don’t know what will.

Its December 2014 and before the year is out we have a festive game jam for you to test your skills in.

How does it work?

PLAYHACK starts today! We’ll provide you with a 3D model and your mission is to turn it into a game. The only rule: you must use the model somewhere in your game.

It works like this:

  1. Fork this month’s project into your account
  2. Use the project and it’s contents to build a new game.
  3. Post to your devlog about your game throughout the month
  4. At the end of the month we’ll look through all the projects that were forked from the original. 
  5. We’ll pick our favorite and feature it on the front page of PlayCanvas for everyone to see.

The Model

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We are giving you the reins (get it?), to take the game wherever you want. Well almost. Incorporating the sack and present is optional, but you must use the Jolly Santa model (complete with sleigh and Rudolph).

Whether its an endless side scroller or an intense racing game, you can use this month’s model to create any game that you like.

Look out for another series of tutorial blog posts coming soon to give you some ideas coming soon.

Judging

The process of judging will be as broad as the rules. You won’t be marked on the strength of code, graphics or theme, the winning game will be the project that we enjoy the most. Simple.

We will be holding things down here at HQ during the month long jam by sharing some of the best screen shots, DevLog entries and general updates of your progress.

Featured Winner

On the 1st of January we will judge your projects and our favourite will be featured on the PlayCanvas landing page!

Last month's winning game from LizziP and Alex

SRL by lizzip and auroraimortalis

Last Month

With ramps, barrels, hyper speed turrets and explosions, last month’s PlayHack was crazy (in the best way possible).

Our favourite entry is SRL by PlayCanvas users lizzip and auroraimortalis, whose sci-fi maze game really impressed us using security camera’s, laser doors and the Hover Tank acting as the villain. Amazing!

Honourable mentions go to PlayCanvas users Crefossus and Daniel Petterson for their games, but thank you to everyone who took part. We can’t wait to see what you can come up with this month!

FotorCreated5

Click the giant button below to begin your project!

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PlayCanvas Update 21/11/14

We haven’t been keeping up our weekly update as much as we really should and for that we are eternally sorry. However, from a new particle system beta to the even newer watching and starring functions this week is no disappointment. Lets go!

PLAYHACK_boxes

Features

New Particle System

Our new Particle System is only in beta form but already we’re seeing great things created with it. You can join by sending an email to info@playcanvas.com. We hope to release it to everyone in the next few weeks.

Project Pages

Project pages are now a public overview of your project. You can use the devlog to talk to other PlayCanvas users about your game. Devlogs go into the public feed on the welcome page.

Watching/ Starring

You can now Watch or Star PlayCanvas projects! 

Watching a project tells us that you’re interested updates from this project. Soon we’ll start customizing your feed with updates from the projects that you’re watching.

Starring a project just tells us that you think it’s cool. You won’t receive any more information about it, but you can rest safe in the knowledge that you’ve given the project’s owner a little boost to their day.

Project Stars

Graphics

Theres so much new graphics stuff to announce, it gets its own section. Crazy, we know!

  • We have a completely new shader subsystem.
  • Support for far more lights in a scene.
  • Point lights can now cast shadows (like spot and directional lights). See cast shadows option in light component UI for point lights.
  • We added Fresnel reflection. Currently still a beta feature this is only enable via a script.
  • You can now use physically correct falloff mode for point and spot lights. See falloff mode in the light component UI. Current mode is linear, new mode is inverse squared.
  • Gamma correction is now enabled by default in scenes. For older projects you can turn this on in your scene settings.

Other News

Referrals

Our new Referrals Program is our way of saying thank you for sharing the PlayCanvas Engine. Simply share your unique referral link where and when you please and if a user signs up to PlayCanvas using your link, you get 5% of anything they spend on PlayCanvas for their first year.

Propsplanet

We announced that PlayCanvas is now powering 3D Asset Store Propsplanet. Propsplanet is a great place to pick up beautiful game ready assets. Using their 3D preview you’ll see exactly what the asset looks like in your game before you buy.

PlayHack

There is little over a week to go till the first PlayHack Game Jam closes, but its never too late to enter! Find out everything you need to know here.

Stay In The Loop

Follow us on Twitter, @playcanvas, for updates on PlayCanvas.

Like the PlayCanvas Facebook page for our whimsical views on the game dev scene.

Join and start discussions on the PlayCanvas Forum.

Get expert responses to your questions on PlayCanvas Answers.

PLAYHACK – Make a game, get featured

Calling all Game Developers!

PlayCanvas’ first ever PLAYHACK is upon us and that can only mean a whole month’s worth of fun and some incredible game developing.

How does it work?

PLAYHACK starts today! We’ll provide you with a 3D model and your mission is to turn it into a game. The only rule: you must use the model somewhere in your game.

It works like this:

  1. Fork this month’s project into your account
  2. Use the project and it’s contents to build a new game.
  3. Post to your devlog about your game throughout the month
  4. At the end of the month we’ll look through all the projects that were forked from the original.
  5. We’ll pick our favorite and feature it on the front page of PlayCanvas for everyone to see.

The Model

This month you get to build your game around this uber-cool, sci-fi hover tank!

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Other than incorporating the model your game can be made and presented in any way that you like, whether it be overhead or side-scrolling, shooter or adventure.

Judging

The process of judging will be as broad as the rules. You won’t be marked on the strength of code, graphics or theme, the winning game will be the project that we enjoy the most. Simple.

We will be holding things down here at HQ during the month long jam by sharing some of the best screen shots, DevLogs and general updates of your progress.

Featured Winner

On the 1st December we will judge your projects and our favourite will be featured on the PlayCanvas front page!

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Stay In The Loop

Follow us on Twitter, @playcanvas, for updates on PlayCanvas.

Like the PlayCanvas Facebook page for our whimsical views on the game dev scene.

Join and start discussions on the PlayCanvas Forum.

Get expert responses to your questions on PlayCanvas Answers.

HTML5 Game Development Community Meet Up

Pizza, Beer and No Developer Tears

Last Thursday we hosted an event for around 50 members of the London HTML5 Game Development community at our Idea London office. After striking a deal with Papa John’s, we had a great talk from Amazon’s Jesse Freeman and caught up with a community that we are proud to be a part of.

MEETUP

Responsive Game Design

After some catching up over a slice (or three) of pizza, Amazon’s Gaming Evangelist Jesse Freeman discussed the challenges of making your game cross-platform and resolving this with Responsive Design. Offering advice on resolution, scaling, mechanics, syncing data and coding for cross platform, Jesse’s even used his games Super Jetroid and Super Paper Monster Smasher to illustrate his points.

But what was the gist of Jesse’s talk? Put simply, consistency. The modern gamer demands and should have access to the same gaming experience no matter what device they use or playing style they adopt. Hopefully Jesse’s presentation will feed the attendee’s ambitious cross platform ideas and projects.

London HTML5 Game Dev. Community

While there are HTML5 communities all over the globe, if you are a developer (or interested in game development) in or around London you might be interested in the London communities events and online group. Not only can you become part of a growing community but you can learn, advise or simply gossip about HTML5 technologies.

In just over two weeks we are holding a presentation night at the Mozilla London office where amongst other speakers our CTO Dave Evans will be giving a talk on Virtual Reality for the Web. Anyone is able to attend! simply sign up here.

PlayCanvas Update 04/07/14

There has been plenty going on at HQ since our last update and it is all making game development on our engine that little bit easier. Here’s a run down of engine optimisations, new features and what happened behind the scenes at PlayCanvas this week. 

Team Hex Penguin's game Spacetifacts won at the Malmo Game Jam

Team HexPenguin’s PlayCanvas game ‘Spacetifacts’ won the Malmo Game Jam

Asset Lists

We now include Assets lists for each Pack when running your game, allowing you to load a Pack with all Assets. This means you can make multiple levels, each as a Pack and load them at runtime, reducing the amount of data you have to download upfront.

Ranks and Nominations

We have been paid some incredible compliments in the last week or so. In particular Develop Magazine ranked us as the top WebGL game engine in their Develop 100 gaming tech list. We have also been nominated for a Technical Innovation award by Develop Magazine as they placed in the same category as products like the Oculus Rift Development Kit 2. Although these accolades from Develop have left us feeling particularly grateful, it is great that the game development industry in general is recognising our recent efforts.

Events

On Tuesday we hosted  the London HTML5 Game Development Meet Up at the London HQ of Mozilla. There were some great talks from Jesse Freeman (on HTML5 vs Unity), Karl Bunyan (who spoke on wrapping games with his app PhoneGap) and our very own Senior Engineer Maks (who spoke about creating colorTanks in a game jam). At one point during his talk Maks edited his game colorTanks in the PlayCanvas editor live and had most of the attendees playing the game at the same time. Can’t wait for the next meet up!

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LizziP and her team slam the MalmoJammo 

Team HexPenguin used PlayCanvas in the Malmo Gam Jam to create their winning game. We love seeing progress in our communities projects but to hear that PlayCanvas users are using the engine to win (in the intense conditions of a game jam) is incredible. Why not play team HexPenguins award winning game here?

Stay In The Loop

Follow us on Twitter, @playcanvas, for updates on PlayCanvas.

Like the PlayCanvas Facebook page for our whimsical views on the game dev scene.

Join and start discussions on the PlayCanvas Forum.

Get expert responses to your questions on PlayCanvas Answers.

PlayCanvas Voted the Leading WebGL Engine

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Develop Magazine have voted PlayCanvas the leading WebGL Engine in their Develop 100 rank of top game development technology. Ranking 52nd out of 100 Development products and tools, our engine bested other great engines to top the WebGL podium. 

Noting in particular our real time cloud collaboration and features such as per pixel lighting, physics options and entity systems the kind folks at develop magazine gave us a great write up and it feels terrific to be recognised by them for our efforts. Develop magazine have also nominated us for an Industry Excellence Award in the Technical Innovation category. We will be attending the awards ceremony in Brighton this month and whether we leave the event with the award or not, we are thrilled to be recognised in the same category as products like the Oculus Rift Development Kit 2 and Sony’s ‘Project Morpheus’.

All we ask of you our PlayCanvas family is that you keep your ears and eyes peeled. With all the great plans we have lined up for the near future we expect that the recent accolades will be the first of many. Until then we are glad that the game development industry are taking notice of our fresh take on the game engine.

Meet the PlayCanvas team: Kevin Rooney

Roonio

In our latest instalment of this series we chat to Kevin, PlayCanvas‘ Creative Director from Sligo, Ireland

How did you get into the video games industry?

I developed educational language games in a previous start-up, but had always wanted to get involved in real games. PlayCanvas was my chance.

Can you briefly describe you role at PlayCanvas?

I’m the Creative Director, so I look after the design side of things. We are just getting warmed up!

Favourite aspect of PlayCanvas’ service?

I think creating games is a very natural and intuitive thing for people to do, but often with creating computer games the technical aspects can make it seem like a mysterious beast. PlayCanvas is dropping this barrier bit by bit and that’s something I really like.

How is PlayCanvas changing the way people make games?

It’s pretty amazing to have one code base for these games, so it can be played on multiple device types and shared around with just a link. That’s pretty powerful stuff in a world full of different devices and operating systems.

Where do you see web based gaming in the future?

Probably firing laser beams from its eyeballs at passing games consoles throughout the galaxy.

Describe one interesting thing about yourself?

When I was 17, I represented Ireland in Basketball for a number of years! (Editor note: Kevin and Vaios’ ‘mano e mano’ Shoot-out is coming to a court near you)

 

The Quick Fire round (this is where things get a little interesting)

Zelda or Final fantasy?

Zelda

COD or Battlefield? 

Battlefield

Mario or Sonic?

Mario

Favourite game of all time? 

Oooooo tricky. I have lots of those. At the moment it’s Battlefield 4, but only when my friends are playing at the same time!

Greatest Gaming Achievement?

Being part of the team that made Swooop!!

PlayCanvas Update 27/06/14

No one ever called us inactive, we’ve had a busy week and we want to tell you all about it. Here’s a run down on improvements to the engine and what happened behind the scenes at PlayCanvas this week. 

The award winning ColorTanks

The award winning colorTanks

Brand new Custom and Built-In post effects 

Now you can select new modifications for your entity or you can create your own. we even have a step by step guide to help you write the custom script.

Beautiful Post Effects on Playbot

Beautiful Post Effects on Playbot

Events

Will made a trip to Spain as he showed off some Cloud Game Development at ARM’s Booth in Barcelona and Dave gave attendees an introduction to PlayCanvas at a London event warming up to the GBSG Jam.

Showing off in Barcelona

Showing off in Barcelona

PlayCanvas Projects

Some members of the PlayCanvas Community made real strides in their projects too. Check out this great game by PlayCanvas user Rerofumi. Also PlayCanvas Senior Engineer Maks‘ award winning colorTanks had a facelift too, give it a try here.

One of your five a day: 'Tamaaanya' a cute carrot munching game made by PlayCanvas user Rerofumi

One of your five a day: ‘Tamaaanya’ a cute carrot munching game made by PlayCanvas user Rerofumi

Stay In The Loop

Follow us on Twitter, @playcanvas, for updates on PlayCanvas.

Like the PlayCanvas Facebook page for our whimsical views on the game dev scene.

Join and start discussions on the PlayCanvas Forum.

Get expert responses to your questions on PlayCanvas Answers.