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Thread: Shipping Tappy Chicken

  1. #1
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    Post Shipping Tappy Chicken

    Shipping Tappy Chicken
    Tappy Chicken is out now, shipped simultaneously on iOS, Android, and HTML5. Available as a free, lightweight download, it’s the first UE4 game released on any of those platforms, and one of the first overall.

    The entire game was built by a single artist (Shane Caudle) with no traditional programming skills. It is a content-only game (contains no C++ code), with all of the gameplay created entirely using Blueprints. Shane built the core gameplay loop in an evening and spent perhaps a week working on building out the menus, fixing bugs, etc... for the 4.0 release.


    Since 4.1 shipped, Shane has optimized the artwork to reduce overdraw (tight bounds on the sprites and splitting transparent and opaque objects), which improves the framerate on lower-end devices like the iPhone 4. He also made use of the new Blueprint-exposed achievements API and added support for them, joining the existing (previously-experimental) leaderboard support. All of these changes will be available in the 4.2 release.

    Easy cross-platform development
    UE4 makes it easy to create a cross-platform game, abstracting away platform-specific details and letting you focus on making a game. Tappy Chicken handles touch, mouse, and controller input, and can run on any supported platforms, even the consoles. The only platform-specific logic in Tappy Chicken decides whether to show the leaderboard and achievement buttons or not; everything in the game runs the same in the editor preview as it does on device or in the browser, making testing a lot easier.

    The shipped version targets the following platforms:

    • iOS: iPhone 4 / iPad 2 or above, running iOS 6 or above.
    • Android: Devices with an OpenGL ES 2.0 GPU that run API level 9 (Android 2.3) or above.
    • HTML5: Browsers that support WebGL (Latest Firefox, Chrome, Safari, or Opera, with compatibility increasing as time goes on)



    Small download size
    The 1.0.0 shipping sizes for the various platforms are listed below:
    • HTML5: 9.4 MB
    • Android: 26.8 MB (OBB + APK combined)
    • iOS: 28.2 MB

    The actual Tappy Chicken game content is under 2MB, the rest is basically a fixed overhead for the engine that won’t increase as you add more content to your game. We’re still optimizing this overhead; expect to see further size reductions in future releases. Even so, you can ship a much larger game with dozens of times more content than Tappy Chicken and still fit into the OTA download size for the various stores (typically 100 MB).

    Online features
    Tappy Chicken also demonstrates how to use leaderboards, achievements, and banner advertisements on iOS and Android. We shipped with support for iAd Network on iOS and AdMob on Android, although there is a new IAdvertisingProvider API in 4.2 that can be used to add new advertising services without modifying the engine.

    Leaderboards and achievements are implemented via the online subsystem interface, going to Game Center on iOS and Google Play on Android. The leaderboard and achievement portions of the OSS are exposed to Blueprints right now, and we intend to expose the entire system eventually. I’ll go into more depth on how to add achievements and leaderboards to your games in a future blog post, or you can look at the 4.2 version of the main Blueprint in Tappy Chicken once it is released.

    What’s next?
    Due to the difference in timeframes, we ended up shipping this release on a branch off of Master instead of 4.2 (all changes have been merged back to Master as of today); most of the changes made it in for 4.2, but a few Android and HTML5 fixes won’t be in the Launcher version until 4.3.

    We’ve done testing for this release across a decent range of different devices, but nothing can substitute for having a live game in the wild due to the nature of the diverse hardware and drivers used in Android devices. We plan on addressing compatibility problems, pushing the fixes to GitHub, and releasing updated versions as issues are reported, improving the engine for everyone.

    Going forward, we’re going to treat Tappy Chicken as a living product, making updates as necessary to keep it in a 'ship ready' state with every release of UE4, eating our own dog food, if you will. Feel free to reply with questions or comments below or join me on Twitter at @joatski.
    Attached Images Attached Images    
    Last edited by Crystal Voliva; 07-10-2014 at 04:36 PM. Reason: added link to wiki page on 'shipping sizes'

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  3. #3
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    We're pushing it live now. Hang tight!

  4. #4
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    Great job guys, and thank you for all the hard work you do and the great tools that you make!

  5. #5
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    Note: The last of the changes (so far) from the Tappy Chicken release branch were pushed to master as of https://github.com/EpicGames/UnrealEngine/commit/5dc58359e032b89622f66802bccd73aee8564472

    Cheers,
    Michael Noland

  6. #6
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    I've answered/recapped a number of questions about the livestream in that thread: https://forums.unrealengine.com/showthread.php?6834-Twitch-stream-Tappy-Chicken-release-for-iOS-Android-and-HTML5!&p=56167&viewfull=1#post56167

    Cheers,
    Michael Noland

  7. #7
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    Nice work. I always keep an eye on the Flappy Bird project as a 2d/mobile benchmark for tue UE4. Moreover, I'd really enjoy to have a more straightforward and simple HTML5 exporter, because exporting game for the web it is the thing I miss more from Unity.
    Game and AI developer.
    Twitter: @thek3nger

  8. #8
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    Hi, really nice move Michael, and nice game!

    But did you see that the Android Leader board is already cheated?
    This could become a game breaker (for the Unreal Engine mobile solution) if not fixed.

    Cheers

  9. #9
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    Made the first Review , Yeah!
    Anyway thanks EPIC for making that possible for everyone!
    New to Game Developing

    If someone needs a Mate to learn together send me an PM!

    Learning Modeling: [||||||||||]
    Understanding UE4: [||||||||||]
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  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by SRombauts View Post
    But did you see that the Android Leader board is already cheated?
    Shane erred on the side of a nice user experience for the leaderboard code. It trusts the local save game so that you can play offline, get a high score, and still see that high score reflected in the reported Game Center or Google Play number. As a result, a cheater can easily place an absurd score on the leaderboard, but competing within your circle of friends should be fine. You can choose to instead report the score only when online while receiving it (this is actually what the version of the game in 4.0 and 4.1 did).

    We will probably offer savegame encryption in a future build, but that is at best a marginal protection, since you can run the executable on a rooted or jailbroken phone and attach a debugger to just modify the score value in memory (which would also thwart the 'only report when achieved' approach too).

    Cheers,
    Michael Noland
    Last edited by Michael Noland; 05-23-2014 at 02:08 PM.

  11. #11
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    Understood, I like this explanation as it is all about a choice developers have to make ; and perhaps we can add an upper limit to score (because 1 billion eggs....)
    Thanks!

  12. #12
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    For anyone interested in shipping sizes and measured performance on different devices, https://wiki.unrealengine.com/Tappy_Chicken is going to be kept up to date with future releases.

    Cheers,
    Michael Noland

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by Michael Noland View Post
    For anyone interested in shipping sizes and measured performance on different devices, https://wiki.unrealengine.com/Tappy_Chicken is going to be kept up to date with future releases.

    Cheers,
    Michael Noland
    Thanks Michael! for this and all your mobile efforts these last couple of weeks, very much appreciated!

  14. #14
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    Shipping it on Windows Phone 8 would be the real achievement (obviously after supporting it in UE4). Don't bury your head in the sand about WP please, forget the numbers think of the future.

  15. #15
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    Samaritan
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    Speaking of Windows phone, WP 8.1 will support WebGL in the browser. Does that mean that UE4 can run inside IE on WP 8.1 ? This might be a real life saver as we are being asked to support WP 8.1 for our 2D game... Any thoughts ?

    Thanks
    Sanjit

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by dsanjit View Post
    Speaking of Windows phone, WP 8.1 will support WebGL in the browser. Does that mean that UE4 can run inside IE on WP 8.1 ? This might be a real life saver as we are being asked to support WP 8.1 for our 2D game... Any thoughts ?

    Thanks
    Sanjit
    I'm not sure if it's possible. If is, I think that running in the browser could cause some performance issues. Also I'm not sure how such game would deal with touch interface (it would be running on Internet Explorer which interprets touch gestures on its own way). As a Graphic/UX designer I always think about this. Native UE4 support will give more freedom and stability. I'm Windows Phone user and I really hope that Epic guys plan to implement this soon.

    Michal
    UE4 blog: www.michalorzelek.com/blog/ - Tutorials, free content and more!

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by dsanjit View Post
    Speaking of Windows phone, WP 8.1 will support WebGL in the browser. Does that mean that UE4 can run inside IE on WP 8.1 ? This might be a real life saver as we are being asked to support WP 8.1 for our 2D game... Any thoughts ?
    I'm not sure that will work out very well, but feel free to give it a shot. In my (admittedly limited) testing with our HTML5 output on the IE11 desktop browser, it took about 5 minutes to load versus 15-20 seconds on other browsers; performance after that seemed reasonable, but something about their JavaScript JIT or whatever was pretty unhappy with parsing the Emscripten output. I certainly hope that will improve over time, but betting a game on it seems unsound.

    RE: Windows phone support in general, this is our official position right now:
    Quote Originally Posted by Tim Sweeney View Post
    We have been doing some work in this direction (implementing various levels of WinRT API support) and we want to have Windows Phone support eventually, but we're a very long way from having a ship-quality implementation.

    Right now our mobile efforts are really focused on iOS and Android based on their huge market sizes. We have a lot of work to do on these platforms before expanding to other mobile platforms such as WP.
    Cheers,
    Michael Noland

  18. #18
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    Samaritan
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    Thanks Michael for the inputs.

    I tried to navigate to the Tappy Chicken page on a Windows Phone (8.1) but it complained that the browser was unsupported. Perhaps you should provide a link which runs the demo in HTML5 anyways. Just for kicks I tried to run the demo in Chrome on my Nexus 5 but it forces me to download the Android App version.....

    Sanjit
    Last edited by dsanjit; 05-28-2014 at 12:30 PM.

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    Although the goal of creating an quick game to show off the ease of UE4 was honorable. The execution of the game was badly lacking due to the difficult nature of the very first set of posts to pass.
    I just stopped playing after about 15 tries to get through the very first two posts. I just figured the rest of the game was going to be ridiculously more difficult. (played HTML5 version in chrome) You may have a wonderful coding example in there somewhere, but the attention span for a brand new game is extremely short (as is mine), with that you should seriously consider changing the first few maps and broadening the posts at least another 30% to allow players to get a feel for how much the chicken moves with each click, etc.. give them a sense of accomplishment and make them interested in moving forward, otherwise as is, it fails at it's attempt to showcase the feature set it was intended for. Look at simple games like Angry Birds, easy to start, difficult to master.

    Trying to help.

    However, there are plenty of examples of great games that are being developed with your product.
    I am brand new to the software (just joined) and was of course looking for tutorials.

    Best of luck with the projects, it would seem like you have a great product in UE4.
    Last edited by microtogo; 06-09-2014 at 06:42 PM.

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    The game is quite good. I saw many complaining about the size of the game, but nowadays 28MB is nothing.

    And if is true that the game was coded in one evening thats amazing! but i´m sure that he was an experienced developer or at least he knows the basic usage of Unreal Engine.

    I was writing a review about Tappy Bird in spanish and my courisity made me register here. Congrats for the game, good work!

  21. #21
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    Hi Michael Noland,

    I don't have much knowledge with making games for HTML 5 however, where should I look to package a game that can be played in a browser?

  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by unrealguy View Post
    Hi Michael Noland,

    I don't have much knowledge with making games for HTML 5 however, where should I look to package a game that can be played in a browser?
    Nevermind, found a doc, in case anyone else is interested.
    https://docs.unrealengine.com/latest/INT/Platforms/HTML5/GettingStarted/index.html

  23. #23
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    Still waiting on a tutorial (as promised) about making achievements work. The leaderboards are quite simple to setup but the achievements seem to be more difficult to set up.

  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by KillerSneak View Post
    Still waiting on a tutorial (as promised) about making achievements work. The leaderboards are quite simple to setup but the achievements seem to be more difficult to set up.
    Hi KillerSneak,

    Sorry about that. I don't know when I'll have time to make a blog post about them (probably not for a week or more). The actual achievement nodes themselves should be reasonably straightforward, the one important thing to remember is that (*currently*) there is no transparent caching/retry layer to handle network problems, etc..., so you need to handle the success/failure outputs accordingly, saving the achievement unlock in your savegame to send later until you finally get a Success result back. That's where most of the complexity in the Tappy Chicken BP comes from.

    I've got an email from Ryan RE: general Google Play configuration to incorporate into the blog post since there are a few more tricky steps there than with iTunes Connect, which I'll go ahead and post over in the Android section now.

    Cheers,
    Michael Noland

  25. #25
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    No problem. I have it all working now Tappy Chicken is a great learning resource I'm only working with android at the moment As I don't have access to a MAC yet. I'm also planning on making a post about getting your game from UE4 on the playstore with all steps in between (signing-keychain / achievements / alpha / beta stages etc etc) I hope it will be useful for the community.

    Quote Originally Posted by Michael Noland View Post
    Hi KillerSneak,

    Sorry about that. I don't know when I'll have time to make a blog post about them (probably not for a week or more). The actual achievement nodes themselves should be reasonably straightforward, the one important thing to remember is that (*currently*) there is no transparent caching/retry layer to handle network problems, etc..., so you need to handle the success/failure outputs accordingly, saving the achievement unlock in your savegame to send later until you finally get a Success result back. That's where most of the complexity in the Tappy Chicken BP comes from.

    I've got an email from Ryan RE: general Google Play configuration to incorporate into the blog post since there are a few more tricky steps there than with iTunes Connect, which I'll go ahead and post over in the Android section now.

    Cheers,
    Michael Noland

  26. #26
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    Samaritan
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    Now that Tappy Chicken has been out for a while, I was wondering if Epic could share the Android and iOS device types, and OS versions, that have downloaded and run the app. Maybe the crash count too. This would allow us to see what may be working for UE4 with a 2D type of game, and how low the hardware requirements for this game type.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Tkfore21 View Post
    Now that Tappy Chicken has been out for a while, I was wondering if Epic could share the Android and iOS device types, and OS versions, that have downloaded and run the app. Maybe the crash count too. This would allow us to see what may be working for UE4 with a 2D type of game, and how low the hardware requirements for this game type.
    Hi Tkfore,

    We don't actually collect phone-home analytics out of the box for cooked mobile games, so we don't have data for specific device types like that. This is something we're interested in adding to games (*optionally*, entirely up to you whether you want to include it in your game) in the future though. I'll ask around RE: crashes and see if we can get any data back from Google or Apple about that; our built-in crash reporter is just for Windows and Mac.

    However, we are working on building out a device compatibility matrix on the Wiki that we'll keep up to date going forward: https://wiki.unrealengine.com/Android_Device_Compatibility

    It's still early days so there isn't a ton of information up there yet, but as we do the compat. testing for the next release of Tappy Chicken and also 4.4, we'll be updating it for every device we test on. We're also going to make a similar page for iOS, and likely HTML5 as well (covering different browser versions).

    The Android devices for which we tested the original Tappy Chicken release (branch of Main somewhere between 4.2 and 4.3) are listed here: https://wiki.unrealengine.com/Tappy_Chicken

    Cheers,
    Michael Noland

  28. #28
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    I've looked though the blueprints, but I'm also glad you have confirmed that there are no, "call home", functions in Tappy. What I was mentioning, and I'm sure I could have described it better, are the reports on the Android Developer Console. This page can give you details of the different types of devices that have installed your app, and what versions of the OS they are running on. This could give you a better picture of the devices that can currently run UE4 apps.
    Also Michael, please keep appearing on the Twitch broadcasts. You do a fantastic job explaining what is happening, without talking over everyone's head. Thus, helping us understand the different aspects of UE4, and what to expect in the future.

  29. #29
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tkfore21 View Post
    I've looked though the blueprints, but I'm also glad you have confirmed that there are no, "call home", functions in Tappy. What I was mentioning, and I'm sure I could have described it better, are the reports on the Android Developer Console. This page can give you details of the different types of devices that have installed your app, and what versions of the OS they are running on. This could give you a better picture of the devices that can currently run UE4 apps.
    Thanks for the heads up, we had a look thru the data there and will figure out how to publish it in a useful format (probably will post the OS / device breakdown on the Tappy Chicken wiki page) as well as look thru the crash reports (seems to be mostly a crash on exit bug).

    Quote Originally Posted by Tkfore21 View Post
    Also Michael, please keep appearing on the Twitch broadcasts. You do a fantastic job explaining what is happening, without talking over everyone's head. Thus, helping us understand the different aspects of UE4, and what to expect in the future.
    Thanks! I always feel kind of awkward leading up to one, but it goes naturally once you're on the air. We're trying to rotate thru to make sure that we get a good spectrum of coverage of different engine/editor areas, but I'm pretty sure I'll be on more in the future

    Cheers,
    Michael Noland

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  31. #31
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    Quote Originally Posted by KnightTechDev View Post
    Are you asking about Flapple Bird or Tappy Chicken? The answer is yes in either case: Flapple Bird looks to be a direct demake of Flappy Bird, and Tappy Chicken is certainly inspired by Flappy Bird. Neither of them are made by the person who made the original Flappy Bird, although the concept is far older than that.

    This one isn't the first either, but it's got a lot of delightful WTF: http://technokittenadventure.com/ (released Sept 2010, several years before Flappy Bird).

    Cheers,
    Michael Noland

  32. #32
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    I would really love to see a c++ version of tappy chicken, so I can learn from the code.

  33. #33
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    A c++ version would be great

  34. #34
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    9.4 MB HTML5 size was reached by optimizing for size and compiling out FreeType, Vehicle Physics, Speed Tree, Simplygon, and Recast
    Could someone elaborate on that. How to exclude certain parts of engine before building.
    I assume 9.4MB is after gzip compression on .js file. When I compiled TappyChicken to HTML5, I got approx 200MB .js file, and 30MB after compression.

    Thank you!

  35. #35
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    Quote Originally Posted by tas View Post
    Could someone elaborate on that. How to exclude certain parts of engine before building.
    I assume 9.4MB is after gzip compression on .js file. When I compiled TappyChicken to HTML5, I got approx 200MB .js file, and 30MB after compression.

    Thank you!
    Yes this information is exactly what i need to ship my game.

  36. #36
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    Hey -

    This is a mini faq which I wrote - https://forums.unrealengine.com/showthread.php?48463-HTML5-Capabilites (Look under 2. The generated .js files are huge.) This might point you to the right direction.

    edit : -Oz is default option in master now. development builds are generally big, shipping builds cull lot of debugging cruft and are smaller in size.

    Thanks,

  37. #37
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    Oh so stripping stuff seems to be applicable to HTML5 builds only. Im hoping i can find something similar for IOS and Android builds

  38. #38
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    The general idea is applicable to everything - if you don't need the feature, there's no need building it - reduced size and reduced compile times - Its just that HTML5 is very sensitive to binary sizes.

  39. #39
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    Thank you Ankitkk
    I see you need to go to C++ for stuff like this.

    One cool tip i found from tappy chicken was reusing splash screens. This alone save already if you start counting KB's

  40. #40
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    Bump: doesn't appear as though you can reuse splash screens any more? But I managed to reduce a full set of (detailed & full color) splash screens from 25MB (saved compressed from photoshop) to 3.5MB by doing a couple of things.
    Last edited by Spoondog; 06-28-2016 at 09:30 PM.

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