Mobile games are becoming more and more popular. This means that an increasing number of game developers are going to start creating games for mobile devices. If you want to get ahead of the curve, then now is the time to start learning more about mobile programming for video games. Whether you are already a video game developer or are new to the world of programming, learn the best 5 tips for mobile game programming.
5 – Understanding the Interface
When dealing with mobile programming, you need to pay attention to the interface that you will be working with. Build specifically for one platform. There is a major difference between programming for a touch screen display and programming for an older phone where users will be playing via their phone’s buttons. To get an idea of what options are available for the platform you will be programming for, it will help to play around with some popular entries in your market. Download some games for the platform and familiarize yourself with the controls and interface. Consider what you like and don’t like about the interface of each title. You can use these notes when you start your mobile programming.
4 – The Use of Art
When working with mobile programming, it is unlikely that you will be developing with a 3D game engine. More than likely, you will be using backgrounds and texture files. You need to pay attention to the size of these files, as you don’t want your game using up all the available RAM of the mobile device and forcing random glitches or crashes. Despite this warning, you should still start with high-resolution images for your backgrounds and textures. Every year or so, the power that gets packed into mobile devices increases and you may be able to use your original high-resolution images in a future release or update.
3 – Sound and Audio Quality
It can be very difficult to add audio to a mobile game. Most developers rely on minute sound effects for in-game occurrences, over the use of background music and voice acting. The reason for this goes back to the limited amount of RAM that you have to work with. By eating up more RAM with audio, you will have less available RAM for your backgrounds and textures. Carefully weigh the benefits of superior audio with the use of your art. In some instances, it may be easier to rely on system sounds provided by the phone and eliminate audio file all together; though, the ease of doing this will depend on the platform you are programming for.
2 – Play Testing
To ensure you work out all the bugs in your coding, it may help to consider releasing a BETA version of your game for free. Let users download the mobile game for free and report any bugs to your development team. The mobile programmers can then go back through the coding and ensure the game is bug-free upon final release. This can also help get the word out about your game, you already have a buzz surrounding your release when it becomes available for purchase.
1 – Be Patient
Do not rush your release. This is especially important if you plan on making game programming a major part of your career. One bad release could drag the name of your development team down, as the name of your development company will be tied to future releases. Be patient and ensure your game is ready for release. Test it yourself, on the actual platforms that it will be released on. If you do not offer BETA testing, then you may want to hire a group of people to playtest the game. In addition to looking for bugs in your mobile programming, they should also be providing with insight into how enjoyable the game is and whether others will find the game entertaining.
Following these tips, you can increase the chances of a successful mobile game. Mobile game programming is much different from game programming for computers and video game consoles. It may seem like a simple transition, but there is a lot of factors to consider, such as background image files, textures, audio files, and the overall playability of your game. Take your time and have fun learning more about mobile game programming.