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Shiva Vs Unity WebGL

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Shiva Vs Unity WebGL

Postby SimonK » 2018-03-20 15:41

Hi all, I'm a long time Unity user and I know that one of Unity's current weaknesses is the size and manageability of WebGL projects. Compared to something like Playcanvas it's slow and unwieldy. Playcanvas however has its own set of weaknesses IMHO and Shiva looks a better fit for me personally. I was wondering how Shiva's WebGL workflow compared (specifically for online content).

Thanks
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Re: Shiva Vs Unity WebGL

Postby broozar » 2018-03-20 17:50

Hi Simon,

thanks for checking us out. In a nutshell, the webGL workflow is as follows:

1. make your game in ShiVa
2. click on "export"
3. upload to a server
4. done ;)

In more detail: http://www.shiva-engine.com/doc/publishing/HTML5/

- You can use both our Lua script as well as C++ plugins for coding, however C++ for webGL is still in alpha development stages. Better stick with Lua.
- You can hook into websites and communicate through JS, no problem. Example code and a demo are available. Coding game logic in JS however is not supported.
- ShiVa generates just a handful of files for the export: an engine JS, a .data binary blob with all your game files, and a few supplementary files like an index HTML document, a loading splashscreen image, etc.

Let me know if you are interested, and what else you wish to know about. In the meantime, have you had a look at our webGL page? http://www.shiva-engine.com/html5/
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Re: Shiva Vs Unity WebGL

Postby giggsy » 2018-03-21 12:35

Interesting topic!
I am also currently looking at some HTML5 engines for a client app.

What we are probably looking for (in the end, it's up to our client):
* The HTML5 build, meaning the website, should also load on a mobile browser. This is NOT the case with Unity. This IS the case with Shiva, at least my first test: http://bit.ly/shivawebgl ... it's really just a press of a button!
* If possible, you should also be able to create a "native" app. Meaning not just an app with a html5 canvas wrapped in it (it looks like this would be the way with Playcanvas). Shiva is able to do so.

Possible gotachs:
* It could turn out, that the Shiva Engine.js is too big (12MB) meaning too long download times.
Our app is rather lightweight, meaning e.g. no physics. It would be interesting, if you could somehow strip some/unused parts of the engine in order to reduce the engine size. If you peek over to Unity (GDC Mar 2018 Keynote), the seem to be working on optimizations like that, but it's still in closed alpha.


@SimonK: Do you have experience with Playcanvas? What are the 5 main drawbacks?
It's not nice ranting about other engines in public, so you can drop me a PM if you like :)

Thanks!
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Re: Shiva Vs Unity WebGL

Postby broozar » 2018-03-21 13:23

webGL browser support on mobile is tricky. 3 things have to come together:

- the browser has to be be HTML5 compliant and webGL-enabled
- the hardware is mobile, so often only openGLES compatible, not openGL. Hardware acceleration must be available. Depending on the browser, this can be an issue. This is what makes Firefox webGL on ARM devices so unbearably slow, for instance on the Raspberry Pi.
- the game needs enough memory to run. When you export a ShiVa html5 game, you have to specify the memory target. Depending on the mobile hardware, the browser or its settings, you could run into memory limits on older devices.

As far as the 12MB download size is concerned, you can compress the data stream through a simple htaccess file (see bottom of http://www.shiva-engine.com/doc/publishing/HTML5/) which helps considerably.

"Native" HTML5 apps can be done through a local server, which can be created in as little as one line of script: http://www.shiva-engine.com/html5-anywh ... localhost/
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