I’ve spent a rather long time trying to get a solid direction going in terms of setting up a back end asset/entity management system. I didn’t want to build one myself. It’s a pain in the ass, and a major time sink. I’ve been sniffing around looking for other frameworks to handle this for me. This week, I’ve been giving the Citrus Engine a whirl, but there have been a few rather important flaws that have popped up.

  • When entering and exiting fullscreen mode, Citrus (and implicitly, Starling), would crash due to a loss of Context Error. It’s VERY frustrating for me to chase down bugs in someone else’s framework, and after a good two days of spinning my wheels, I couldn’t come up with a working solution. Too bad. Citrus was looking very promising.
  • Starling also doesn’t seem to want to scale when Stage.displayState is set to StageDisplayState.FULL_SCREEN_INTERACTIVE. It locks the render area to the stage’s predetermined viewport size. The fix has been to increase the viewport’s dimensions to full screen dimensions, but that is NOT what I want to do. I want the resolution to remain the same (1024, 576 for example), but to have the rendered image scaled to fill the screen. I’m done trying to get this fixed. It’s  a TERRIBLE fault in Starling’s design.
  • Starling also has no support for functionality similar to Flash’s Sprite.graphics.lineTo(x, y) drawing. There are some bandaids offered by other developers, but they lack a means of transforming a texture used to fill a given polygon. What’s more, if you want to have a texture tile in Starling, it CANNOT be from a texture inside of a texture atlas. It has to be in its own separate Texture. THIS IS CRAZY! The whole point of using Starling is to utilize the hardware for maximum efficiency, and texture atlases are a large part of how you accomplish this feature!
  • I can’t seem to find very good information on using Starling for games that aren’t small, casual titles. What I find are articles on “How to make a gem puzzle” or “Angry Birds clone”, which all require a single TextureAtlas  to contain all graphics. If I’m trying to make a game that essentially looks like this, I’m going to need a hell of a lot more than a single texture atlas. Where on Earth do I even start in setting up something to handle this?

If anyone has any practical solutions to these problems, please let me know. Otherwise, I’m back to using Nape physics and my own proprietary image management for Conjurer.