Error: Your app was launched during the build phase – GameMaker and Win81 – Only one way to close!


SCENARIO: Happily working away on a game using GameMaker by YoYo Games. The game runs great in Windows. I switch my output target to Windows 8 (native or js). Run the game. Works fine once. Close the game. Change some stuff. Run it again. Get nasty little popup saying “Error: Your app was launched during the build phase”. Shitake! Run it again. Same error? Oh shitake again. So what caused this error, how do I get my game so I can work on it again, and what do I do to keep it happening in the future.

First, I’ve hit this error before in GameMaker, but for different reasons. Before “build phase error” was because I was targeting WinJS and VS2012 wasn’t installed. GameMaker is hard mapped to the MSBuild which comes with VS2012. This time I had Visual Studio 2012 installed, however. If you are curious here is Visual Studio 2012 error – http://blogs.msdn.com/b/devfish/archive/2014/11/03/gamemaker-build-of-winjs-fails-without-vs2012-installed-error-your-app-was-launched-during-the-build-phase.aspx .

Mark Alexander of YoYo games also blogged about this error and some of his approaches to resolving it. Be sure and check out his post at http://help.yoyogames.com/entries/24974026-Error-Your-App-Was-Launched-During-the-Build-Phase . I personally haven’t hit his issues but it still makes a good read.

To repoduce the “build phase error” do the following. Note I’m able to do this reliably, at least in the v1.4.1474 release of GM.

  • Set target to Windows 8 native or
  • Run the game once
  • Close by clicking the [ X ] or swiping down from top
  • Run the game again
  • You should get the error

If your app is ‘stuck’, aka you can’t even run it again and keep getting the build phase error, you must uninstall your dev game. To do this:

  • Hit the [windows] key to get to the Windows Start screen
  • Start typing the name of your game
  • The game file should show up on the right
  • [right mouse] on the name of the game
  • Click [uninstall]

To keep your GameMaker Win8 dev-life happy, remember, there is only one good way ( that I’ve found ) to close a game during development using GameMaker. Hit [Alt+F4]. That’s the only way to shutdown a Win8 that works for me without getting the build-phase error. Let me know if you have different results.

I’ve put a video version of this up on my youtube channel – enjoy. Video at – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_jpZlI6n9v0&list=UU8cesCJmCc_Z2ysD5hHXDqg  .

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