Introduction to Pixelwave
Hello! So you'd like to learn a bit more about Pixelwave but don't have much time to read through the hulky manual? No problem. The goal of this article is to answer all of your pressing questions as quickly as possible.
1 What exactly is Pixelwave?
Pixelwave is a framework for iOS that makes developing 2D games and other interactive applications simple. It provides an intuitive Objective-C API that lets you avoid low-level code without giving up the power of using OpenGL and OpenAL. Under the hood Pixelwave packs a punch when it comes to rendering performance and optimizations. Pixelwave also comes equipped with useful utilities such as a particle engine, physics engine, tweening engine, debugging tools and more.
Pixelwave works on every iOS device ever made: iPhone, iPod Touch, and iPad.
2 Why Pixelwave?
The framework was created with the following design goals in mind:
- A Simple Interface
- Pixelwave's API is very simple to use. It's built with Objective-C to be completely object oriented. To get a better feel for what working with Pixelwave looks like, take a look at some code samples.
- Pixelwave is built to be fast. The core of the engine is built with C, and relies on OpenGL for hardware-accelerated rendering and OpenAL for high performance sounds. Pixelwave also performs many 'invisible' optimizations (such as batching draw calls) for you. Pixelwave likes to work hard, so you don't have to.
- Powerful Features
- What makes Pixelwave's features powerful is how easy they are to use. Need to draw Images? Vector shapes? Text? No problem. Playing sounds is also a breeze.
- Pixelwave's features include:
- - Support for many different image formats
- - Powerful text rendering
- - GPU accelerated vector shape rendering
- - Support for many sound formats
- - Easy 3D and 2D sound playback
- - Flexible tweening engine
- - Physics engine integration
- - Performance monitor
- - Resource manager
- - Particle simulation engine
- Read more on the features page.
- Extending the capabilities of the engine doesn't require digging through thousands of lines of code (like most open-source projects). To extend the graphics engine for example, Pixelwave exposes simple C API for interacting with the GPU, allowing you to create your own visual elements or integrate existing OpenGL code into Pixelwave.
- To read more about Pixelwave's extendability features check out the manual.
- We believe that without proper documentation, even the best written framework in existence would be unusable by most. Aside from performance and ease of use, one of Pixelwave's main goals is to provide you with a lot of documentation. Think about, for example, how many development teams actually make time to write a quick introduction for the complete n00b (like this article :)).
3 How much does it cost?
$0. Nothing. Zip. It's free. Pixelwave is released under the permissive open-source zlib license.
4 What experience should I have?
You'll need to be familiar with Objective-C. If you'd like to extend Pixelwave, or create super-efficient chunks of code you can drop down to using C as well. Developers with knowledge of AS3 will surely feel at home quickly as Pixelwave's class structure is derived from it. If you're not familiar with AS3 there's no need to panic. We think you'll quickly come to appreciate the clean and intuitive API.
5 What do I get?
When you download Pixelwave you get:
- The core framework - Ready to be compiled and used on any iOS device.
- Sample projects - So you can quickly get started.
- Xcode templates - So you can skip the repetitive task of setting up a project.
- Integrated API reference - Look up any Pixelwave class or function with Xcode's native help tools.
6 What's the best way to start?
So, all of the shameless promotion worked and you're ready to start using Pixelwave. Sweet. What's next?
Just head over the Getting Started Guide to continue your adventure.
- This page was last modified on 30 July 2011, at 23:07.