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Java ME vs. Flash Lite: A comparison of mobile phone game development Alex Koller Supervisors: Greg Foster, Madeleine Wright.

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Presentation on theme: "Java ME vs. Flash Lite: A comparison of mobile phone game development Alex Koller Supervisors: Greg Foster, Madeleine Wright."— Presentation transcript:

1 Java ME vs. Flash Lite: A comparison of mobile phone game development Alex Koller Supervisors: Greg Foster, Madeleine Wright

2 Overview of Presentation 1. Project Synopsis 2. Research Findings 3. Demonstration 4. Results 5. Conclusions 6. Future of Mobile Game Development 7. Questions?

3 Project Synopsis Comparison of mobile game development between Java ME and Flash Lite 2.1 We investigated the available APIs Understanding capabilities of each platform Designed and developed a cross platform game designed to test the capabilities of Java ME and Flash Lite

4 Project Synopsis Cont. Developing a complete game allowed us to:  Test all aspects of game development  Test supporting functions, such as persistent data storage, menu creation, etc.  Assemble quantitative comparison results

5 Research Findings Game types and genres  3D games becoming more viable – phones with increased processing power and onboard GPU  Simple and addictive game play over graphics  Simple user controls  Arcade-style games are well suited, and have been successful on mobile phones

6 Research Findings Cont. Important features of a successful arcade- style mobile game  Decent speed/frames per second  Minimal memory usage  Quick return on investment – short development time  Small file size for transfer and storage  Addictive, easy to play and fun! Immerse the player in the game

7 Research Findings Cont. Development Environments  Java ME: Many development environments to chose from Sun Wireless Toolkit excellent free choice Comes with many utilities for emulating, testing, method profiling, memory monitoring, etc.  Flash Lite: Flash CS3 Professional is the only option Propriety software (US$600) Crashed multiple times while developing, emulator occasionally refused to run

8 Research Findings Cont. Development Environments Compared ** Average of five successive start-ups ** Initial memory usage immediately after start-up Development Time  Roughly three weeks for each platform Development EnvironmentStart-Up Time (seconds) *Memory Usage (mb) ** Netbeans Eclipse IntelliJ IDEA Java Wireless Toolkit3.433 Flash CS3 Professional20.489

9 Demonstration Black Sky is a top-down perspective, arcade- style, tile-based game Both implementations are almost identical Black Sky (Java ME) Black Sky (Flash Lite)

10 Results Frames Per Second  Average FPS over 30 second period: Java ME: Flash Lite: Memory Usage  Peak memory usage over one minute period: Java ME: 516 kb Flash Lite: 1032 kb  Java ME peaks when initialising, while Flash Lite continues to rise, peaking at the end.

11 Results Cont. Lines of Code  Java ME more ‘complete’ than Flash Lite version Java ME: 3000 lines Flash Lite: 1000 lines Final file size:  Most mobile phone games aim for ≤ 200kb Java ME: 81.5 kb Flash Lite: 59.3 kb

12 Results Cont. Problems Encountered:  Java ME: Creating GUIs required some trial and error – can only be created programmatically  Flash Lite: Flash CS3 does not natively support MIDI – requires a laborious 10 step workaround Difficulty creating a tile-based game engine without BitmapData object (introduced in Flash 8) Input validation (button presses) too slow for fast-paced games – results in unresponsive controls

13 Conclusions Both Java ME and Flash Lite are capable mobile game development platforms Java ME is more mature than Flash Lite  Java ME has been in use for many years  Flash Lite is a relatively new platform Java ME has more variety in development environments

14 Conclusions Cont. The game we created allowed us to perform comprehensive testing on both platforms  Memory usage and frames per second Java ME outperformed Flash Lite in these two vital tests  Number of lines of code and final file size Flash Lite achieved better results Java ME is better than Flash Lite  For almost all aspects of mobile game development, we found Java ME enabled us to achieve our goals more precisely and easily

15 Future of Mobile Game Dev. Java ME  Solid development being made on the Java ME framework, specifically the gaming APIs  Over 1 million developers currently using Java ME Flash Lite  Flash Lite 3.0 recently released Focus is on video/multimedia, not game development Based on Flash 8 (still no BitmapData object though) At this stage, Java ME is staying ahead of Flash Lite in terms of mobile game development

16 Questions?


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