Rubicon make all iPhone / iPad games free this weekend

October 24, 2014

Rubicon the makers of popular games such as Great Little War game are making all of their iOS back catalogue of games free this coming weekend. Why? Well read their latest article to find out

Booty5 v1.3 the free open source HTML5 game engine now available

September 26, 2014

More happy coding evenings and weekends for me means more juicy features for you. Well, that’s a bit of a fib, the latest version 1.3 is more of a tidy up and documentation phase. I’ve spent a few hours each evening this week putting together the Booty5 introduction and the Booty5 API reference and along the way I ended up tidying up the source code. By the way, did I mention that the minified version of Booty5 without Box2D functionality is only 50k!

v1.3 changes:

  • Added more comments
  • Actor setters now only dirty transform if a change is made
  • Actor.findActorDeep() removed
  • Actor.findActor() has additional parameter that allows recursive searching
  • Actor.sendToBack() added
  • Actor.addFixture() now returns the created fixture
  • Actor.addJoint() now returns the created joint
  • Scenes now active property which can be used to pause processing
  • Scenes will now still be processed when not visible
  • Scene.findActorDeep() removed
  • Scene.findActor() has additional parameter that allows recursive searching
  • Scene.sendToBack() added

I’m hoping to have full support for Booty5 in the up and coming next beta release of the Goji Editor, so watch this space.

Booty5 the free open source HTML5 game engine has big update

September 22, 2014

That’s right, I’ve been busy coding away like a mad man to bring you a huge update to Booty5 the free open source HTML5 game engine which is available for download on Github.

Changes include:

v1.2 Changes:
* GSAP dependency removed
* JQuery dependency removed
* Support for actor hierarchies added
* Support for physics joints added to actors
* Opacity for actors and scenes added
* Actors now support 3D depth property
* Actors now have support for onCreate and onDestroy event handlers
* Actors now support box, circle and polygon shaped fixtures
* Fixtures can now be marked as sensors
* Actors and Scenes can now clip their children against box, circle and polygon clipping shapes
* Actors and Scenes now have separate active and visible states
* Actors now have a simple physics system that is used on Actors that are not under control of Box2D
* Actors can be docked to the edged of the display as well as to the edges of canvas actors
* Actors can now ignore scene camera movement
* Actors now support onCollisionStart and onCollisionEnd events
* Child actors can now bubble events up to parents
* Scene camera can track actors
* Scenes now support touch panning
* New actor types added:
* ArcActor – Displays arcs / circles
* CanvasActor – A UI actor that can arrange, scroll around and dock its content
* ParticleActor – An actor that is a particle system
* Polygon Actor – An actor that displays polygon shapes
* RedctActor – An actor that displays rectangle shapes
* Support for timeline key frame based tween animations added
* Support for various types of resources added on a global or scene local level, including:
* Shapes – Used by clipping and physics systems
* Geometries – Used by rendering system to render geometries
* Brushes – Used to create sprite atlases / bitmap animation
* Sounds – used to play back audio
* Materials – Used to define physics materials
* Full support for the Goji Editor added, including XOML loader

I’ve also started documenting the engine and API at

Goji game editor for Marmalade 1.7.2b now available

September 4, 2014

Latest version of the free Marmalade compatible game IDE the Goji Editor is now available for free download

Changes include:

  • Added New Project dialog with support for creating wireframe projects
  • Update to AppEasy Core to work with Marmalade SDK v7.4
  • Fixed export of extra app.icf settings
  • Fixed missing app_id for Facebook extension when deploying device builds

Goji Editor the game IDE is integrated into Marmalade SDK tool chain

August 31, 2014

The Goji Editor has undergone some major changes over the past few months with the biggest change being tight integration into the Marmalade tool chain and removal for direct support for Gideros and Corona.

If you are a Marmalade SDK developer and want to see a quick overview of the new Marmalade SDK integration features then take a look here

Why have I taken this route? Firstly, Marmalade recently released a free license making the Marmalade SDK freely available to all developers enabling tight integration of Goji into the Marmalade build and deployment system, this enables developers to use Goji to create games for a much wider range of platforms. Secondly, the next release of the Goji Editor will add support for HTML5 and I simply cannot keep up support for Marmalade C++, Marmalade Quick, AppEasy Core, Corona, Gideros and HTML5, so something has to go.

So here are the main changes summarised:
* Tight integration into the Marmalade SDK, including deployment and application configuration settings than can be set in the editor such as specification of which extensions / modules to include, drag and drop icon / splash screens and much more. You can also compile, test and deploy from the editor.
* Support for Marmalade C++, Marmalade Quick and AppEasy Core
* AppEasy is now distributed in source form and compiled by Goji (the old player has gone because it took way too much time to update), this allows you to change the underlying engine quite easily to extend it to add your own features and / or mix C++ and Lua. It also allows you to deploy your games to ALL Marmalade platforms and not just iOS / Android
* Assets can now be exported to sub folders
* Tonnes of bug fixes

You can download a free copy of the Goji Editor from

Booty5 – Free HTML5 Game Engine

August 17, 2014

I’ve finally branched out into HTML5 game development, I’ve been avoiding it for years but finally took the plunge. Funnily enough my first creation with HTML5 is the Free Games Bandit, a service to help game developers get their mobile games noticed. I found myself actually enjoying working with JavaScript, CSS and HTML5. I’ve changed my whole mindset regarding HTML5, where I once saw it as a tool for creating gimmicky web site widgets I now see it as a valid way to make games and proper slick interactive web sites.

With the previous paragraph in mind I have begun the long journey of creating an HTML5 game engine, which I have randomly named Booty5 and is hosted on Github. I’ve already made some headway putting together the basics of scene / actor management, support for sprite atlases / sprite animation, Box2D physics and animation via GSAP etc..

My plans for the engine in the future are to support a majority of features from the AppEasy Core SDK. I am also in the process of extending the Goji Editor to enable support for building, testing and deployment of HTML5 games.

You can find out more about the free game engine here

Compile Programs Online

August 15, 2014

On my travels I came across a brilliant tool that’s very useful, especially for programmers that want to learn a new language. The tool is called Compile Online. The tool allows you to write code into the browser, compile and run it. The main advantages of this type of service is a) You don’t need to install any tools or IDE’s b) You can try out a new language very easily. It supports all sorts of languages including the likes of C#, C++ 11, Objective-C, Lua, PHP, JavaScript, Ruby and a whole boat load of other languages.

New to the Marmalade SDK?

August 13, 2014

So you downloaded the Marmalade SDK, but you haven’t quite got around to using it yet. Maybe you plan on developing full on native speed games? Maybe you want to develop apps that run across a large number of platforms? Or you just want to avoid XCode and Mac to develop iPhone and iPad games. Regardless of why you downloaded it, why aren’t you using it yet? Maybe it seems a little daunting at first and you just don’t know where to start? Well I have some news that may just help you.

Marmalade are running a series of Getting started with Marmalade webinars which will help you get up and running quickly. The webinars are hosted by Marmalade expert, developer and support engineer Nick Smith and will cover an overview of how Marmalade works; a number of practical demos and examples that show you how to start a project in Marmalade, or import an existing C++ project. Members of Marmalade’s support team will also be available throughout the webinar to answer questions. The webinars will last for 30-45 minutes.

Marmalade are hosting three Getting Started with Marmalade webinars on Friday 15th of August:

  • 13:30 India ST / 16:00 China ST (09:00 BST)
  • 17:00 Central European ST (16:00 BST)
  • 10:00 Pacific DT / 13:00 Eastern DT (18:00 BST)

To register use the links below:

9am BST

Audience Log-in URL:
Registration Form URL:

4pm BST

Audience Log-in URL:
Registration Form URL:

6pm BST

Audience Log-in URL:
Registration Form URL:

Free Games Bandit – FREE amazing new app discovery service for users and developers

July 16, 2014

I’m quite excited to announce a new free mobile games and apps discovery service called Free Games Bandit. Free Games Bandit was invented to serve two purposes:

App discovery from the users point of view

First and foremost, as an avid mobile app user and gamer I have a MASSIVE gripe with app stores such as Google Play and Apple’s App Store. When I visit Google Play and the iOS App Store I am ALWAYS presented with apps and games that I have seen before. Not only that these apps and games rarely change. I can log in every day for a week and see the same old stuff there. I am forced to drill down categories for hours and hours just to find an app or game that’s new or different. I feel very strongly that app discovery at the moment on the major app stores is stagnant and a mind numbing experience.

Free Games Bandit solves this discovery problem by presenting a collection of random games and apps to you the user. It also presents them in an exciting interactive format that feels very game like making app discovery FUN.

App discovery from the game and app developers point of view

So as a mobile game and app developer you created your latest marvel app or game and put it on the app store, did a little PR, posted to various gaming forums, told your friends, announced on Facebook / Twitter etc, maybe a little paid advertising, but where are the sales and downloads?

80% of most new apps and games for Android and iPhone / iPad get buried at the bottom of the app store under the immense weight of the app stores themselves. what are your chances of being discovered? That’s right, virtually 0, which is evident with how many apps are on Google Play / Apple App Store with fewer than 10 downloads. What would your downloads look like if you as a developer had the same chance of getting your app discovered as all other developers? Free Games bandit does not discriminate, all app developers that add an app have the same chance of being discovered

So if you are an app user / gamer looking for a new, unique and interesting way of finding new apps and games or a mobile developer looking for a fair and free way of promoting your apps then pop over to Free Games Bandit. Note that there is no sign up required to use or add apps.

Free Games Bandit on Facebook

Free Games Bandit is now available on Facebook as an app at I’ve also added a Facebook page at where you can keep up to date with development news.

Getting your app featured on Google Play – What to do and not to do

July 10, 2014

Looking at my recent app sales / downloads and feeling quite disappointed I sat wondering why none of my apps have yet been featured on Google Play. I searched around and around and finally found something that could explain why. A recent-ish (2012 to be exact) talk by Dan Galpin and Ian Lewis at the Google I/O conference offered up some dos and donts when it comes to “possibly” being featured on Google Play. The video of the Google I/O event can be watched here.

A basic summary is shown below:

  1. Make sure app works on latest OS release (hide soft buttons too)
  2. Do not enable copy protection in Google Play developer console (this has already been removed)
  3. Use back button to pop up pause menu or return to previous screen
  4. Respect Android life cycle. One tip, when game returns from paused state, pop up a game paused menu and never lose game progress
  5. Don’t use certain permissions if your app doesn’t really use them such as read / write SMS, change wifi state etc..
  6. Conserve system resources (memory, battery etc..)
  7. Follow Google’s rules such as a) dont use other 3rd party IAP API’s b) Do not upload apps that download others apps c) Do not bribe users for 5 star reviews
  8. IAP must be done correctly, including taking into account situation where purchase was not delivered because the app was paused or shut down
  9. Make sure game works and runs well across wide variety of different devices
  10. Get app store listing correct and make sure that the featured images are ok at a low resolution, such as text can be read. Don’t include keyword spamming or phrases such as “if you like xxxx then” or use over salesy type language

There are more tips, so its well worth watching the video.

Good luck with getting your app or game featured on Google Play.

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