Friday, 5 June 2015

How I Created My First Android Game Using The Corona SDK

I developed my first game in 2010 for the Samsung Application Developers Contest. I came 2nd in the Casual Games Puzzles Category.

In the years to come I would go through a lot of tools in my quest to find one suitable with my reality. This year, that search ended as I found the Corona SDK.

On the 20th of March this year, I downloaded the Corona SDK. I spent the weekend looking through the sample code and by the next week I was convinced that I had found a tool that would enable me create 2D games with the only limit being my imagination.

The following reasons are why I settled on the Corona SDK. They are:
  1. Free
  2. Low hardware requirements
  3. Easy to use and learn
  4. Rapid application development
  5. Cloud compilation of applications
The above features matter because of the hardware I have. As you know, the Android SDK is slow. However, on a Windows machine it is plain disgusting. With that in mind, having a cloud compilation tool meant that I would avoid using the Android emulator.

The Corona SDK simulator is quite fast even on machines with low hardware specifications. This means that I could use my machine to develop the applications.

The cloud build needs JDK 6 on a Windows machine. Once it is installed, you are good to go. However, you must sign the application with a key. To do this, type the following into your command prompt:

keytool -genkey -v -keystore project_name.keystore -alias project_name -keyalg RSA -validity 999999

Replace project_name with the name of your project. You need this keystore before you can do your build.

Testing on my machine was done using BlueStacks which allows you to run Android apps on your machine. Once I finished the Corona SDK cloud build, I tested the results on my BlueStacks installation. It was a moment of baited breath as I watched the installation begin.

Finally the installation concluded and I watched the game launch on BlueStacks. Once I didn't have any problems, I tested it on an actual device.

At last it was time to go to the Google Play store. It was a moment of anxiety wondering if my credit card would be rejected because of my nationality.

In the end, the application go published. Without the Corona SDK, I wouldn't have come this far.

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