Popfly Game Creator Alpha launches today and It's amazing. Kudos to Adam Nathan as he's really shown how Silverlight can build incredibly rich applications. I can only imagine what he'll do when Popfly moves to Silverlight 2!
- Here's the Channel 9 interview with Adam building three Popfly games from scratch
- Here's how difficult it was to make games before Popfly
While Popfly Game Creator is designed for non-developers, I'm sure many developers will also want to have fun with it, so here's my quick explanation of Popfly for .NET developers.
Scenes == A Windows Forms/ASP.NET Page Designer: Scenes are the equivalent to a Window or ASP.NET page. You can have multiple scenes in an application, you'll get a start, main, and end scene to begin with, and you can of course switch to a certain scene based on something happening in the game (ex: taking a transporter, dying, etc). In a specific scene, you will go go in and add your actors to the scene in a visual layout.
Actors == Form/Page Controls: Actors are any object you place in a scene. Here's a screenshot and notice that everything, including the background is an actor.
Game == Files/Properties: This is where you can add properties like a game score, or add custom files like pictures of friends.
Behaviors == Brains: Behaviors are the brains of a Popfly game. A scene can have behaviors (like to reset a score when it loads) and each actor can have behaviors. To set behaviors, look for this icon
If you want an actor (control) to move around, play a sound, shoot, appear, disappear, etc, this list of behaviors is what you'll want to click and specify
Here, for example, are a set of behaviors for a car that add steering, adding to the high score and disappearing when the game is over
Shortcuts == IntelliSense Code Snippets: One of the convenience things that the Popfly team did was add shortcuts which are a pre-built set of behaviors. What this means is that rather than having to manually add behaviors for moving up/down/left/right using arrow keys, you can just select that shortcut and it will automagically add those behaviors to the selected actor.
Kudos to the team, Popfly Game Creator rocks!