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From The Blog: Keep Calm and Corona (the game engine, no relation) On!
Started by CoronaBot Mar 24 2020 02:18 PM

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#1

CoronaBot

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We wanted to provide you a quick status update on how things are proceeding towards our May 1, 2020 transition to the new open source platform.

Our goal through this transition is to make sure that you are able to build and deploy your games today, tomorrow and in the future and we are on track to keep you successful with Corona.

On an engineering perspective, we have accomplished a lot already:

  1. The source that we are using to build daily builds is on GitHub
  2. The license has been changed to MIT
  3. Building engine itself is being moved to GitHub. It’s already complete for macOS. Windows is in progress.
  4. Completely offline device builds for iOS/tvOS and Android are in a prototype state, with plugins sourced from the hard drive.
  5. Site docs.coronalabs.com is being built and deployed from sources.
  6. The community is making contributions to both C++ and Lua code as well as Documentation updates
  7. We have disabled the license checks for the Splash Screen Control and Self-Hosted plugins in latest daily builds.

Over the next couple of weeks, we will be working on making the offline device builds production quality.  After that we will start to decouple Corona builds from the Single Sign On system and then start shutting down the Marketplace and working on a new web page.

On the community front, we are looking at new platforms for the forums.

With regards to financing, initial contributions to the GitHub crowdfunding site are off to a good start, but to be successful we will need considerably more. You can pledge your ongoing support by visiting either Patreon or GitHub Sponsors. Note: we are not relying on crowdfunding yet, but after May the 1st, funding of the Corona game engine will be in your hands.

Vlad Shcherban, Corona’s main contributor, has committed to full-time on-going support of Corona so you can be assured that your ability to continue to use Corona will continue.

Stay tuned for more information and updates.


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#2

pixec

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pixec
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Awesome!

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#3

kbradford

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Thanks for the update Rob!  Great to hear how things are progressing.

 

I'm curious if you and Vlad will be creating tiers or goals for the fundraising?  We'd love to know how much we need to raise to fund Vlad full-time, and how much to also get you paid to continue your work as well.



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#4

Rob Miracle

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Both support links are active. Patreon seems to let you set how much you want to contribute with a suggested $5 / month. The GitHub link has 9 different suggested contribution plans.

 

Rob



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#5

kbradford

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Both support links are active. Patreon seems to let you set how much you want to contribute with a suggested $5 / month. The GitHub link has 9 different suggested contribution plans.

 

Rob

 

I guess I was thinking more like:  Vlad needs $XXX/month to continue full-time development.  Rob needs $XXX/month to do part-time community management.

 

Godot has funding goals to continue development.  Will Corona do that at some point?  We want you to succeed, but again we have no idea what goal we're evening aiming for.



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#6

Rob Miracle

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The problem is if I say "Staff member A" needs $XXX,XXX a year, then I have effectively told you Staff member A's salary, which is very private and personal information and I'm not going to divulge that information.

 

Another reason to not say how much Vlad needs is that it sets an artificial celling. It would be nice if those willing to contribute would contribute more than he needs. We would love to hire, at least on a contract basis, additional development resources so we can work on things like Switch support, adding new features, and more. And this isn't even factoring me into the picture.

 

 

I will throw out one idea that you can consider when trying to figure out what your contribution should be. If you only bought a splash screen control plugin, you were only contributing $8.33/month. If you purchased a premium ad plugin you contributed $16.67 a month. If you did both, it would be $25 / month. And that wasn't enough to keep Corona Labs going. 

 

Rob
 


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#7

kbradford

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I get that, I'm not wanting to pry into peoples finances.  But it's hard to have any idea how close we are when there is no information disclosed about fundraising or goals.  You say what was coming in wasn't enough to keep Corona Labs going, which again creates uncertainty that we won't be able to raise enough.

 

I'm not sure what the solution is but I'm looking at how others have done it.

 

Here is Godots pateron: https://www.patreon.com/godotengine

 

They have rewards for each level.  Giving things like your name in the credits, voting on roadmaps, company logos in places, etc.  And also if scroll down to Goals they show certain levels they can hire more people, bring on some folks part-time/full-time, etc.  This creates a desire to hit those levels and grow the engine.

 

Glideros has a neat tool to estimate your donation: http://giderosmobile.com/donate

 

I know we're early and Vlad is focusing on development, but we also need to think about funding and a recommended $5/mo donation on Patreon isn't going to cut it as you said.

 

Anyone else have ideas on how we can create funding goals and keep transparency with the community, but still keep salaries semi-private?


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#8

w967

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I get that, I'm not wanting to pry into peoples finances.  But it's hard to have any idea how close we are when there is no information disclosed about fundraising or goals.  You say what was coming in wasn't enough to keep Corona Labs going, which again creates uncertainty that we won't be able to raise enough.

 

I'm not sure what the solution is but I'm looking at how others have done it.

 

Here is Godots pateron: https://www.patreon.com/godotengine

 

They have rewards for each level.  Giving things like your name in the credits, voting on roadmaps, company logos in places, etc.  And also if scroll down to Goals they show certain levels they can hire more people, bring on some folks part-time/full-time, etc.  This creates a desire to hit those levels and grow the engine.

 

Glideros has a neat tool to estimate your donation: http://giderosmobile.com/donate

 

I know we're early and Vlad is focusing on development, but we also need to think about funding and a recommended $5/mo donation on Patreon isn't going to cut it as you said.

 

Anyone else have ideas on how we can create funding goals and keep transparency with the community, but still keep salaries semi-private?

 

it wasn't enough because a lot didn't bother to remove the splash screen.
Imagine ten thousand active Corona developers, of whom only 100 pay $99 for removing the splash screen.
--------
I would have liked to make Corona a commercial product for $ 99 a year.

10,000 users pay $1 million a year.
I think it was enough to keep Our Coorna.

 

------

Sorry, I'm bad at speaking English ^_^ ^_^
 


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#9

Rob Miracle

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I think there is a lot of animosity to being told "You have to pay $X to use a tool" and "You have to pay a large sum once a year".  I subscribe to the Adobe Photographers program which gives me Photoshop, Lightroom and Bridge for $10 a month plus tax. That's $132 a year. If you asked me today to come up with $132, I would have to think about it and seriously consider options. But $11 disappears from my account each month, I don't miss it. Patreon and GitHub both have monthly options which will make it easier.

 

Hopefully $99 for a splash screen won't be a barrier to entry for many. And for those depend on Corona for their success can judge how much having Corona means to them and won't look at a $99 splash screen as "All I have to do".

 

Rob



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#10

kbradford

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But $11 disappears from my account each month, I don't miss it. Patreon and GitHub both have monthly options which will make it easier.

 
100% agree with this.  Monthly is the way to go, and is what Glideros and Godot use in my examples.
 
 

Hopefully $99 for a splash screen won't be a barrier to entry for many.


Are you saying the splash screen removal is going to stay, and there will be a monthly donation level that removes that?

 

And for those depend on Corona for their success can judge how much having Corona means to them and won't look at a $99 splash screen as "All I have to do".

 

I sure you don't think I'm trying to do an "All I have to do" minimum.  That's not my intention at all.  I'm wanting to create a bit of transparency, and give motivation for others to donate.  Corona keeping a minimum level of support is critical to our business and we will fund it as such.  I just want others to have the motivation and transparency to do so as well.



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#11

Rob Miracle

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Are you saying the splash screen removal is going to stay, and there will be a monthly donation level that removes that?

 

 

Absolutely not. We've already disabled it. We won't have any infrastructure in place to handle selling things anyway. That's all Corona Labs. It goes away.

 

The only way to fund Corona development going forward is donate money via however Vlad sets things up.


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#12

SGS

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I think the point is we, as users, need to know what the minimum is to continue using the platform as a viable business...

 

If this it $100k they just say we need $100k.  Then we, as businesses, can decide whether to continue support or replatform.

 

@rob surely you understand what is being asked here?


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#13

Aarbron

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Rob I deeply respect you but it's time to hear the community.

Sometimes the community is right :).

 

kbradford and SGS have really really really strong points.

We need to know a minimum (for a couple of reasons) and levels with rewards is a great idea.

 

Create something sweet and appealing.

People (me too) love it and that's something Corona is missing for many years.

Levels, rewards, a new fun icon that shows Corona is fun to work with and make games etc etc

I know you have a lot to do but you have to do these things too.

We will help you but you should help us too :).

 

An example in light mood.

"+80% and we will start developing for Switch"

Well... you will see how much we want this or anything else :).



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#14

XeduR @Spyric

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I second Aarbron's opinion and I also understand the desire to keep salary information private.

 

However, having clear goals is necessary for any crowdfunding projects. We don't know if and how much some companies have offered to pay Vlad to keep working on Corona, or if it is all in the crowdfunding that we see now. In either case, knowing that "at least X dollars are required through crowdfunding for Vlad to work part-time on the engine", and that "at Y dollars he can work on it full-time", or "at Z dollars he can hire a part-time developer to help him out with Switch integration (or something else)", etc. will make the contributions much more meaningful.

 

Come May, paying 50 dollars per month, for instance, could be completely fine for me, doubling that might work as well. Personally, I don't know yet and how much I can spare remains to be seen as I'm exploring a few potential assignments, but I know for certain that if there are clear funding goals to aim towards, then I will work towards hitting said goals. But if the goal is to just "pay as much as we are comfortable with" without knowing if said contributions are enough, then I know that people will not be as willing to contribute and they'll find that they are comfortable with a lot less due to the uncertainty.


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#15

max.srdk

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Well, as for me, i'm pretty much concerned about the work of some vital plugins such as Lerg's QR and NFC. 

I paid them for a year, the subscription ends in July. And there’s absolutely no idea how it will go on with them.

There will be such a great thing to have a chance to store theme locally for offline builds.

Could you please clarify this issue?



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#16

Rob Miracle

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Vlad posted something on Slack today about fundraising goals.  I'll ask him to repeat it here. 

 

You can pressure me all you want, but I'm not the one who can answer it. 

 

As for plugins, we are going to allow you to load plugins from a URL. As long as Lerg and Scott and the other plugin developers post their plugins to a website, you can load it from them. They may just end up giving you a download that you can save to your plugins directory if they don't want them on a public server.

 

Rob


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#17

vlads

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Hello everyone. I pretty much have a clear goal to work full time on Corona, getting payed for it from crowdfunding. After some threshold I want to use like 3/4 of moneys to pay to contractors to work on specific projects, like Switch support, better HTML5 support, etc.

I think we are on the way to hitting those funding goals, especially considering there was no clear call to fund yet.

I will post some announcements later, as well as probably email to existing Corona users, about where to get Corona and how everything would work after May 1st. And everything would keep working, pretty much in usual way as before. Builds would be done from Simulator, I hope to get 1st party plugins automatically downloaded and integrated into Corona Simulator builds as they are now.

Also, I'm trying to build extendable plugin system, so 3rd party vendors would be able to have their own distribution channels.


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#18

yosu

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Setting or revealing actual funding target has pros and cons. I would just recommend serious users to contribute at least $50/month. The monetize plugins that we paid last time was already a few hundred a year.

 

A side note. A research published in the Economist, to determine how people would pay for an item marked for charity. It revealed that people are more willing to pay for a fixed amount for charity (however small the amount), compared to an what-you-want-to-pay amount.



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#19

pixec

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Setting or revealing actual funding target has pros and cons. I would just recommend serious users to contribute at least $50/month. The monetize plugins that we paid last time was already a few hundred a year.
 
A side note. A research published in the Economist, to determine how people would pay for an item marked for charity. It revealed that people are more willing to pay for a fixed amount for charity (however small the amount), compared to an what-you-want-to-pay amount.


That makes perfect sense. Like others also said. If I had to give to charity and they say that at $1Bn a year famine would be eradicated then I would try to help end it but if it was like give and we see what happens then not as much

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#20

Prathap Murthy

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Corona Alternatives: [@People who are considering switching platforms] Unity is definitely the default (and safer) choice, but it has its share of problems that will pose increasing challenges as you start to port your games over. Godot is another strong alternative (which even received an Epic MegaGrant of $250,000 recently), but its developers have made it clear that they won't support Metal. Defold is also viable, but it still feels a little rough around the edges to me. The more alternatives I've pursued, the better Corona has looked; Which is why I believe we can't let the sun set on our beloved 2D game engine.

Crowdfunding Goals: [@Rob] We understand why you don't want to specify hard numbers. We can go about this in a different way. According to PayScale, a well-paid software developer in Canada makes about 5,000 USD per month (88,000 CAD per year). Assuming that's pretty accurate, let's double that figure to accommodate payouts for you as well as additional contractors that Vlad intends to hire; Which brings the monthly funding goal to 10,000 USD. If you can at least let us know the amount of Splash Screen subscriptions Corona Labs had in the past year, that would give us an idea of how many developer accounts were paying customers (let's call that number X). 10,000/X would then give us a rough estimate of how much each of us willing to crowdfund Corona needs to pledge monthly to keep you guys going. This will at least get the ball rolling. If there are no estimates to go by, some of the paying developers may get cold feet and switch platforms; That's a slippery slope we should avoid.

Re-branding: Back when Corona Labs was still a thing, re-branding didn't make sense. But now with Corona Labs shutting down, the Coronavirus pandemic being the center of attention, Apple/Google being very strict with the use of the word 'Corona' in their apps, and finally Corona SDK itself moving to a crowdfunding model with an MIT license, the opportunity is ripe for re-branding. I disagree with the view point that re-branding an open-source SDK will be hard. How does the Corona Labs team intend to break the news to the world that they've officially shut down (which I believe will catch at least a bit of attention in the mobile game development world)? I suggest we use that opportunity to put the word out about the new SDK name as well. We could also reach out to channels like Ask Gamedev, Gamefromscratch etc. The search term 'Corona SDK' yields coronalabs.com as the first result (for now), but the search term 'Corona' does our SDK no favors. We need a unique identity (like 'Defold'). I'm not saying we have to re-brand, but if we're going to do it, there's no better time than now.


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#21

sporkfin

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@Prathap

 

Three excellent paragraphs, thank you!  As for the rebranding, the one thing I'm uncertain of is how difficult (time consuming) it will be to change all the names in the tutorials and 8 years for other things that are helpful to the Corona community.

 

I think it is a perfect time to change names (maybe essential as well) and I'm willing to help out with that move but I get the feeling that a lot of people (not you #Prathap) think that rebranding is just slapping on a new logo and calling it a day when it is, in fact, a much bigger job that will require many of us to contribute significantly if it is to be a successfully transition.  Some of us will need to step up and make new video tutorials and help update the long chain of other things that will need to be aligned with the new identity. 




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