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Hello Readers! Happy New Year, and I hope that everyone enjoyed their Christmas vacations. Mecha Destroyer JD's one-month development challenge came to a close without any submissions, but as one game-creation challenge ends, another begins over at the recently launched Dream Maker's Discord channel. One day remains for the one-week themeless contest with no submissions currently received and $20 at stake. So fire up Dream Maker and go!

BYOND

The beta period of BYOND 512 has finally closed out after well over a year! BYOND Developer Lummox JR briefly summarizes the new features of 512 in fifty-four bullet points. So aside from the occasional bug fix, brainstorming and laying out big ideas for BYOND 513 is up, such as continuing the UTF-8 upgrade, ditching the software render, and upping performance.

BYOND Games

Kozuma3 has recently revived Paradoxus, a topdown shooter game! Nine weapons and four pieces of equipment are currently available to help players be the last gun-slinger standing, bullets fly twice as quickly as before, and shots echo from afar and blow eardrums while near.

The community of Spires of Agartha celebrated their sixth Christmas together, with stockings, candy canes, free memberships, and double activity points. Nagas were selected, and six new skills and spells were created, and with names like UltraSMASH, Flashsword, and Wintermute, what more could be asked for?

Bosses have made their way into Universe 21, as depicted in the latest update by S10 Games. Once defeated, these bosses drop prime gear and prime essence, both of which can be used to gain power and strength. Large energy blasts have been discovered, and player attacks can affect the environment.

Devourer Of Souls shared a peak into the current progress in the rebalancing of traits in Sigrogana Legend 2. To help reduce the demand for current effects, some skills have been cut, others have been converted to default abilities, and new ones have been created. Check out the full details over on their forum.

BYOND Resources

  • Kumorii released a library that allows developers to change day to night and vice-versa with a single line of code.
  • Kozuma3 published a library to help developers get pixel-perfect movement in their games.
  • Is GUI development the worst part of programming any software? Perhaps Aiota's GUI Handler can help!
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Mecha Destroyer JD's one-month development challenge came to a close without any submissions, but as one game-creation challenge ends, another begins over at the recently launched Dream Maker's Discord channel. One day remains for the one-week themeless contest with no submissions currently received and $20 at stake. So fire up Dream Maker and go!

rip byond community
In response to Orange55
Orange55 wrote:
Mecha Destroyer JD's one-month development challenge came to a close without any submissions, but as one game-creation challenge ends, another begins over at the recently launched Dream Maker's Discord channel. One day remains for the one-week themeless contest with no submissions currently received and $20 at stake. So fire up Dream Maker and go!

rip byond community

Honestly I’d be interested in competing in more game making tournaments but I usually find out about them by the time they’re done. :/
also worth pointing out that these were both contests during the busiest times of the year; it's not unlikely for there to be little interest or energy for low-stake contests.

The community is still alive, it just feels broken because there's not a coherent and agreed upon community hub anymore. The forums are a sad excuse for what a community hub for something like BYOND could/should be and it's frustrating that nobody seems to think that the website and community stuff is acceptable by today's standards. It works but it feels very 2005 still.

In response to Kumorii
Just in general, new game submissions are down; It's not just contests.

the games that are submitted usually comprise of copy pasta magic and/or ripped/low quality art assets.

there's still a handful of a decent projects going, but they are few and far between.
There is a lot more competition among game design engines, these days. I think the competition has resulted in BYOND game submissions being down, since game developers are using various other engines. With more engines succeeding in supporting title releases on most platforms, the competition for BYOND has become more stiff.

That being said, BYOND has a uniquely easy-to-learn programming language, and a unique focus on multiplayer game development that is lacking in most game engines. My impression by the success of RPG Maker MV is that development of BYOND, when not focused on the active community, should seek to improve ease of use for non-coders, and to focus on its strengths of being multiplayer friendly and being easy to use. Current game engines tend to advertise that "no coding is required" but then also provide options for coders to learn the special language of the engine. BYOND has an excellent easy-to-learn coding language, but lacks many of the "no coding required" features (although BYOND has other major draws, like interface customization and a built-in image editor). Newcomers to game design tend to pick a "no coding required" engine, while experienced coders often gravitate toward something even more hardcore that is used by professionals. I suggest BYOND/Lummox seek to expand the options for game development with minimal coding or even no coding required, and to continue to focus on being one of the very best engines for indie multiplayer game development.

I am interested in contributing to the community with tutorial videos and libraries, which I enjoy doing. However, since YouTube has really hit smaller channels' revenue drastically, my incentive to make YouTube videos has gone down. I still enjoy making videos and generating a positive community experience for hobbyist game designers, but I do need to make a living. For me, game design and coding are a hobby, while the work I've trained in is in another field.

BYOND got its start by being extremely remarkably easy to use to make a game, around the turn of the millennium. There are now more competitors who have introduced "no coding required", which lure many novice developers, including my own development team (which includes a non-coder). I think BYOND would thrive much better with more options for new developers. From a hobbyist perspective, BYOND is a nearly ideal engine for multiplayer games, since it is so versatile, yet has such easy code. I even know of some people who are fairly active BYOND players who don't make a game here because coding is just a bit beyond them. Expanding to non-coders would expand the game designer base a lot.

I'm sure expanding to non-coders would be a big endeavor, since Dream Maker currently isn't designed that way. But, after meeting the current BYOND community's needs/wants, I think that creating a non-coder friendly Dream Maker would be the next best step. Even if my suggestions here are not pursued, I still believe Dream Maker could use some upgrades to help developers create more efficiently.

I'm sure that these suggestions would be marked as "not feasible" in the forums. But, I still suggest them here, because I'm pretty convinced it would be the best thing. I think an overhaul of Dream Maker to make in friendly for non-coders would be the more important way to enrich the number and quality of the game development community on BYOND, in the long run. Currently, I believe most of the BYOND community is players, not developers, and that's why BYOND has not been as active, because fewer games are being released. BYOND was originally envisioned as a place where most people could be developers, because it was so easy. That was true in the past, but now many people who don't know code yet gravitate to "non-coder" engines, rather than learning BYOND's simple yet powerful DM language. Anyway, for BYOND to succeed in the long term, I believe a non-coder friendly Dream Maker is the most important thing. If I could choose between an excellent webclient and a more excellent and non-coder friendly Dream Maker, I believe a Dream Maker overhaul to make it non-coder friendly would be most important for the long-term success of BYOND. BYOND's language has become more and more powerful. Now, BYOND needs to remember its roots of being one of the easiest to use ways to make a game anywhere.
Compile to EXE will save BYOND.
In response to Kozuma3
When's that coming out?
As someone who develops for a living (outside of byond and thanks to byond) I truly want the engine to succeed. And while I can pick up something like unity, I actively want to use Byond instead to make my games. With Woo's suggestions and a lower barrier into playing byond games, I think that would be a start in the right direction.
No idea why .exe isn't already compileable, other than the possibility of less ad revenue lul. Feelsbad man. A website re-design to look more modern would be neat too, I bet some people would work for free to see this early 2000s looking spaceship look more modern, but no point if it's not a "priority". People read books by their covers, regardless of whether or not they should. But the face of byond isnt a priority, weird stuff m8.
In response to PrinceCuck
PrinceCuck wrote:
No idea why .exe isn't already compileable,

Because in 2011-2012 Baird/Dakumonki had cut ties with byond and hosted several games using the built in exe with a launcher, Tom and Lum caught wind of this and in around 2011-2012 removed the feature from the engine, which is why older versions cant be downloaded. So even if Baird is successful it'll have to be trapped on the site with the toxic forum users, or thousands or millions of people will be making lummox youtube money through ads. These aren't your friends. To get a standalone you have to make a deal with the sweaty devil.

Why else they would go out there way to remove a feature?
Lol I mean if hes content with his couple thousand a month then let him do him. I just dont see why he wouldn't want to try and have a more successful business.
the only game worth playing is ss13 anyway
That is only your opinion. I find those games that are posted here far more interesting than ss13.
I am against suppressing other people work and you're talking like it is not worth doing any game in byond because of ss13.

I bet if more games would be as successfull as ss13, there would be more competition and would have to improve even more and this is a good thing.
Spire of Agartha averages 100+, that's not bad at all.
In response to DarkestBloo
DarkestBloo wrote:
Spire of Agartha averages 100+, that's not bad at all.

It's doing very good by most byond game standards. It's not no SS13 or DU, or prime Nestalgia though.
I hate Lummy.
I'm sure that these suggestions would be marked as "not feasible"

There it is! The magical meme returns
I wanted to drop a quick note that Within BYOND #106 won't be ready in time for release today. I'm hoping to complete the column tomorrow, but Friday at the latest! Thanks for the patience!
*readies the pitchforks*

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