Games on Android continue to get bigger and more elaborate. One of the top developers leading the way in less-than-casual gaming on the mobile platform is Idea Factory (together with Hyperbox Studio). Previously, the company released Spectral Souls, a 1GB RPG for $15 that promised hundreds of hours of gameplay (as any decent RPG would). Today, the similarly priced, and even larger 1.2GB sequel lands on the Play Store: Blazing Souls Accelate.
I've written more than a few of these giveaways for products covering just about every aspect of Android development, and written by dozens of authors. But this one... well, this is special, because it's a series of LiveLessons from none other than former Android Police contributor Ian Clifton.
- Michael Pardon
- Tania N
- Alex (Dupree?)
- Mario II Valenzuela
- Jeff Miller
- Keyz Karanza
- CHRIS S
Congratulations, guys - all of you will be contacted for your information in the near future!
When we last left our heroes, AIDE was just released on the world, to the excited cries of developers who liked the idea of writing and testing their apps on the same device, but still probably couldn't replace their desktop development rig with a tablet. However, the app has been steadily making improvements and, as of the newest version (1.0.1), it's out of beta and will be moving to a freemium model.
It seems like most books on developing for Android are geared towards beginners and those who are accustomed to developing for other platforms or using other languages, while fewer help you put that extra layer of polish and shine on your app. With hundreds of thousands of apps already on the market for you to compete with, that's exactly what you need: something to kick your app up a notch or two.
Following up on the huge success of Great Little War Game, Rubicon Development has officially released the game's sequel: Great Big War Game.
Like its predecessor, GBWG is a 3D turn-based strategy game with a "unique comical style." Indeed, the series' art style is unique and fun, adding a lighthearted vibe to a game that encourages players to "spread mayhem and destruction." The game also has an easy-to-grasp control scheme, relying primarily on tap and swipe actions.
Earlier this week, we mentioned that the amazing folks behind the XBMC project are bringing the app to Android. Well, it's still very early, but would you like to see what it's gonna be like? Of course you do. If you've got a Nexus Q or an Android-compatible set top box, you can download the apk from our mirrors below. For the rest of you, here's what it looks like running on a lovingly hacked Nexus Q, courtesy of Cyanogenmod developer Jason Parker:
The interface is still very much centered around arrow keys/a d-pad.
Today is a good day, I think, for source code drops! Samsung has just released the source code for an update for the Epic 4G Touch, Sprint's variant of the Galaxy S II. The update (FF18) is said to be rolling out to devices right now as an OTA. If you want to get your hands on the kernel code to fiddle with it yourself before the update arrives, however, you can head to Samsung's download page here.
If there is one major downside to the custom development community, it's that the sheer volume of minor variations in custom ROMs and largely-borrowed development makes it difficult, if not impossible to find real, quality development. XDA aims to change this by creating Original Development forums. These special forums will be reserved for projects that adhere to a set of rules, not the least of which is being largely original work.
Qualcomm, the company behind the S4 processor that so many US devices are receiving as consolation prizes in exchange for LTE, has announced that it will be releasing its own SDK for Snapdragon processors. The SDK will initially support the S4, and continue to support future processors as they're released, supporting multiple tiers of hardware.
The company touts the SDK as enabling developers to more tightly integrate their apps with Qualcomm hardware, as well as enabling access to more powerful hardware features, like so:
- facial processing, such as blink and smile detection, which makes it easier to take better pictures of people in groups;
- burst capture, which leverages zero shutter lag to photograph a stream of images at once to select the best shot;
- surround sound recording for better audio capture;
- hardware echo cancellation for better real-time audio experiences;
- sensor gestures (tap-left/tap-right, push/pull, face-up/face-down, tilt) that enable developers and device makers to push the envelope on new, differentiated user interfaces;
- low power always on geofencing capabilities; and
- indoor location that enables apps to continue providing accurate location information even when the user is indoors.
There are countless methods out there for learning Android development from the Android Bootcamp video series to the boatload of print publications currently in circulation to Google's own Android tutorials. Looking to create something both unique and helpful however, Android Cookbook has compiled a crowd-sourced set of recipes for "writing great Android apps," making them available for free online.
The online cookbook, which relies on user recipe submission and group moderation, was recently finalized for publication by O'Reilly, meaning it's now available both on the web and in print from various retailers.