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GameMaker Studio 2: Newsletter #5

Newsletter5

Posted by Mike Dailly on 24 March 2017

Hello everyone! Welcome to our 5th newsletter covering some of the new and upcoming developments going on in the land of GameMaker Studio 2.

Mac closed beta!

languagepref Finally and to much fanfare, the hugely anticipated Mac version of GameMaker Studio 2 is now going out to a select group of testers to help us get a solid version of this amazing piece of software, ready for the public at large. Currently running on hardware that can run OS El Capitan (ver10.11, 64bit) and above, this version will make a huge difference to the end user experience and battery life of all our Mac users.

What's more, since you buy exports for your account, they will be available for both the IDE on Windows and the IDE on Mac, meaning you can jump back and forth from machine to machine without worrying about incurring further costs. So if you thought you were going to miss the huge discount users are currently enjoying while wait for the Mac version, you no longer have to worry about that! Buying now means you'll have full access to your purchased modules once the Mac version is released to open beta later this year.

Gestures Events!

The latest version (2.0.77) has a brand new Gesture system, one we hope everyone will get just as excited about as we do. These new Events allows simple access to common touch and mouse movement, making complex input a far simpler process than ever before. Allowing detection of basic taps and double taps and expanding into dragging and "flicks", these are the beginning of new level of mobile support, with "pinch" and "rotate" being added to its arsenal soon. languagepref

Polls and Pixels

We've recently just held a survey for our new image editor to help us try and prioritise some of the effects developers want to see brought back, the results are shown below. Now this doesn't mean every single one will be added, as some of them are either already there, or don't work with the new layering system. But this is the order we'll consider adding them in - more or less.

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Effects already available:
Black and White: In GMS1.x, this was actually a grey scale filter, and not fully black and white with dithering, and as it turns out inside the image editor we already have a grey scale effect, so you can use this one now!
Opacity: Due to the layers this is a little bit more complicated than 1.x, where it could just make everything transparent. However this feature is actually available already in the layer properties, and what's more because it's now a layer property, you can change it without losing the original image. Simply double click a layer inside the image editor and the dialog (shown below) will appear, where you can adjust the transparency of the layer. This will even let you drawn normally and add to the image without having to rebuild the sprite.
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Just like the Opacity, some of these new image processing tools will appear as layer effects where possible rather than image processing ones, as that lets the result update dynamically as the image changes which is far more powerful and useful.

Trim and Erase a colour have already been implemented, and will be out in the next release.

Lastly a little known feature of the sprite and image editors. If you drag a file (or files) into the timeline (where all the frames are shown), this will add that file as a new frame. If you drop a bunch of file on top of the image itself, this will replace the whole animation with the file(s) you dropped. This is very handy for quickly importing or overwriting a sprite in favour of a new version.

IDE Translations

In the next version of GameMaker Studio 2, we have also enabled the built in IDE translations to allow the community to start translating the IDE. We held this back because we were going to do the first translation ourselves a little later, but there have been several requests for this from users who have already done their own translation of the english.csv file in the Languages folder. So as of the next version, you can create a new Languages folder inside C:\ProgramData\GameMakerStudio2 and drop in your own .csv files. The IDE will then pick them up and allow you to switch to them via the preferences. Any line not translated will default back to the English version, so you shouldn't miss anything with older .csv files either.

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If you are going to take a stab at doing your own translation, the first few lines in the file are important. The first line is a format description and should be left alone.

  • The Name is the label used by the IDE as the look up, so never change this.
  • The English column is for the english version of the text as a reference, again never change this.
  • The Translation column. This is the one you should change to be in the new language.
  • The Restrictions column. If there are any limits for the text these will be listed here. i.e. only 6 characters, no numbers, or whatever.
  • The Comment column. This is a general description of what the text is used for and is here to simply help in the translation.

Next, the special _LABEL lines. _Language should always be an English version of the language i.e. English, Japanese, Russian etc. _LanguageNative allows you to put in the actual Language in it's native tongue. So Spanish would have EspaƱol here. Both _Language and _LanguageNative are displayed in the IDE to make it easier to swap to and from other languages, especially if you accidentally pick one you don't understand.

Lastly, simply name your chosen language file as language.csv. So russian would be russian.csv, Japanese would be japanese.csv and German would be german.csv etc. We will support these files via the marketplace at sometime in the future.
We are also aware there are some items that do not currently get translated, these will be addressed at a later date.

Hidden secrets!

The IDE has some really cool features that not everyone is aware of, so I'd like to shine a little light on a few of them here.

First is up is the DPI override. If you're working on a laptop, especially if you're in Windows 10, then things might be a little cramped due to the fact windows 10 may sit everything at 125% to 150% anyway. You can get round this by tweaking this override. I sit with mine at about 80dpi, which shrinks everything "just a little". I find it a very comfortable scale to work at, and it opens up even more space for me, but play with it yourself to find your ideal size.
dpi override

Next is dock collapse/expand shortcut. If you want to work on lots of code, or just want to work in a distraction free mode, then hiding the docks is a great thing to do. While clicking the buttons at each dock is certainly one way to do it, pressing the F12 or the tool bar button is by far the fastest. What's more, hiding the docks like this will remember the state of the docks and pressing it again will bring them back in exactly the same way. this means you can hide and restore quickly and maximise your workspace even more!
dock collapse

Resource Tree scaling. Shrinking the whole environment with the DPI override gives you a lot, but you can get even more if you think the resource tree is taking up just a little too much space. In the image below you can see that having the resource tree at 50% gives you a fair bit more space and would let you shrink the width of the tree a little more as well, which is great for larger projects.
resource tree

Next time, we'll highlight some more hidden gems, and bring you even more new features coming to GameMaker Studio 2!

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