A Strategic Word Game
All of us at Vermont Digital Arts are pleased to announce the iOS version of our game, Waggle Words, will be featured in the Unite Austin Showcase!
Unity’s Flagship developer conference, Unite Austin, will be held October 3rd – 5th in Austin, Texas this year!
Check out more of our video posts on YouTube: youtube.com/user/VermontDigitalArts/
Follow Vermont Digital Arts on Twitter: @VTDigitalArts
Follow Waggle Words on Twitter: @WaggleWords
Check out our Waggle Words Press Kit for more info!
Come by our Unity Showcase booth to meet the developers and play Waggle Words in both AR and standard modes!
One design problem we faced implementing ARKit into Waggle Words related to scale and perspective.
First, a little background information: Waggle Words is a 3D game originally designed for for iOS and then diverged into SteamVR development. We have hundreds of hive layouts (with infinite letter configurations), all of which are up to 3 stories tall and dozens of meters from the camera. In vanilla iOS, this works fine with our camera field of view and focal length settings. In VR, this works fine was well. In AR there were some problematic results!
The primary issue that resulted from a huge hive, which is very far from the camera in AR, is the following: Even though the hive looked the right size (same as in vanilla iOS mode), one could rotate away from the hive, but not walk closer or further away from the hive!
This is not an expected behavior for AR! Our play testers that were familiar with AR, all pointed this out immediately after demoing our beta builds! Others, who were not so familiar with AR, didn't seem to notice what was wrong, but felt something was off.
Our solution came to use via a tip from someone at Unity Labs! The Unity ARKit plugin is available on the Unity Asset Store; however, one may download the plugin directly from Unity's BitBucket Repo! More specifically, the Unity-ARKit-Plugin repo has a scaled-content-test branch which offered us our solution! (This branch has been merged into the main branch as of a day or so ago).
We now implement one AR camera to track the world and give us the video feed, and another camera which we scale to track the hive! This is a simplified explanation, but essentially the result is a convincing AR experience! One may now walk up, around, away from and through a hive!
We hope this is helpful to all those developing for ARKit in Unity! For more tips on ARKit with Unity, check out Unity's ARKit forum!
With all the excitement around Apple’s much anticipated announcements today, we thought it’s a perfect time to unveil Vermont Digital Art’s Waggle Words iPhone teaser trailer (featuring ARKit enhancements for iOS 11).
Besides conveying Waggle Words being a lively game with lot’s of character, We want to communicate that Waggle Words for iOS will run on devices that support AR, as well as devices that don’t support AR. Players may choose to play in whatever mode suits their fancy (and hardware)!
Subscribe to our Vermont Digital Arts YouTube Channel for more Waggle Words trailers, tutorials, game play and platform announcements!
More exciting Waggle Words announcements to come later this week!
Waggle Words continues with a few more updates as we get ready to launch! Thank you all for your overwhelmingly positive feedback on our last post. Your positivity has given us that extra momentum to work on suggestions from designer, developers and play testers to make our UI even more slick and intuitive. We’re honing our tutorial to make it playable as well as instructable. We are definitely feeling the 90-90 rule.
The first 90 percent of the code accounts for the first 90 percent of the development time. The remaining 10 percent of the code accounts for the other 90 percent of the development time.
— Tom Cargill, Bell Labs
We are hope all of you are as excited for the release of iOS11 and ARKit as we are. Waggle Words AR is pretty cool as we play it with the Vermont fauna and flora in the background and we think it will be fun you city slickers too.
We’ve been talking about both iOS and SteamVR versions of Waggle Words for well over a year; today we’re announcing Waggle Words for iOS now features an Augmented Reality mode for supported devices!
Since we are very close to releasing Waggle Words for both SteamVR and iOS, and given the advent of Apple’s upcoming iOS 11 release (which introduces ARKit for Augmented Reality), we thought we’d apply our accumulated knowledge of working in both VR and iOS and try our hand at Augmented Reality. We have been thinking about AR all throughout Waggle Words development and have intentionally architected our project in Unity to take into account future platforms and modes of play.
Waggle Words AR Mode is still a work in progress. We’re continually iterating our design to be intuitive and fun. We plan on continuing playtesting and implementing UI/UX revisions up until we launch Waggle Words. We’ve included some recent previews of Waggle Words for iOS with both AR and normal modes of play in this post. These samples are already a little out of date, but we thought we’d share our process nonetheless.
We have some TestFlight slots available for serious people in the press, and video streamers, who are interested in Augmented Reality and ARKit.
More to come shortly!
Today, we’re pleased to announce the release of Spin Spell 2.1!
It’s been a long while since we initially released both Spin Spell and Spin Spell HD for iOS. Last September, we were forced to choose between updating both games on the App Store, or allowing Apple to remove them due to their legacy status. We made the decision to only update Spin Spell (for the iPhone) and to remove Spin Spell HD (for iPad) from the App Store. We made that decision in order to support all iOS devices in the future with a single game, Spin Spell.
At the time of our initial Spin Spell 2.0 update, we didn’t announced the update due to our intense focus on the development of Waggle Words (for Steam VR and iOS) and we had yet to add support for iPad into the new Spin Spell 2.0 build.
This week, we took another pass at Spin Spell and updated the game to run on iOS 10, added support for the 12.9 inch iPad, fixed a few remaining bugs, gave Spin Spell a little more polish and leveraged some cool new Apple and Unity features!
Spin Spell 2.1 is now available on the App Store for both iPhone and iPad! Check it out!
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