Mango Beta App Submission Walkthrough

Lots of interest in the Augmented Reality YouTube video on my previous post and although it isn’t anywhere near beta status I decided to publish “Goblin Attack” on it’s own for anyone with an interest.

This post is a walkthrough of the process I went through:

image
Marking the App as a ‘private beta’

image

NB the workaround if you receive the above error is documented here anApp:d involves setting a default Language for the http://forums.create.msdn.com/forums/t/87530.aspx

image
Project Properties Options dialog

image
As you might expect this is the same as with a standard submission

image
Here you have the opportunity to invite your beta testers individually

image

image

It is then a question of monitoring the lifecycle page until the App is through the ingestion process for beta apps.

image
The initial lifecycle page

image

When the app is ready you will receive the above notification via email.  (It may still be some time before the App is available via Zune)

Download Link (Mango with Motion API requirement)

Moving fast with development on this app – there are already a few features and bug fixes that are not in this beta – but all feedback will be gratefully received.

In an ideal world the Goblin would be a little more 3D, made in XAML and swipe his sword / die more effectively – anyone with the appropriate graphics skills please get in touch!

[tweetmeme only_single=”false”]

Goblin Harvest – Augmented Reality Demo

Time for another progress update, this time looking at the early stages of augmented reality within “Goblin Harvest”.

Conceptually the game is a card / board game but with a few interesting “extras” for Mango based phones.  The opportunity to fight off Goblins in ‘hand to hand combat’ arises when one of the task cards is overturned. ( Additional points can be earned relating to the number of Goblins killed or the seriousness of wounds inflicted).

“Goblin Attack”

NB the above is conceptual at the moment – I hope to be able to improve animations and sound effects as we go.

Download Link (Mango with Motion API requirement)

[tweetmeme only_single=”false”]

Marketplace Test Kit Walkthrough

Use the following steps to open the test kit.

  1. In Visual Studio, open a Windows Phone application solution that targets Windows Phone OS 7.1 or later.
  2. In Solution Explorer, select the project you want to test.
  3. On the Project menu, choose the Open Marketplace Test Kit option.

image

What Will the Test Kit Tell Me?


Running the test kit on your application will help you determine whether or not the application will pass Marketplace certification. If a test fails, the test kit provides details about what you need to fix in the application prior to submitting it for Marketplace evaluation. The following lists some of the tests in the test kit.

  • Whether the images provided meets certification guidelines
  • What capabilities the application uses
  • Whether the application screenshots meet the certification guidelines
  • Whether the XAP meets size guidelines
  • Whether the application starts quickly enough to meet certification guidelines
  • If the application does not exceed memory usage requirements
  • Proper use of the back button in the application
  • Application responsiveness
  • Whether the application closes properly

Overview of Tests in the Test Kit


The tests in the test kit are categorized by whether they can be run automatically or need partial or full participation from a developer. Each tab in the test kit contains either the application details or a category of test. Each test category lists a series of tests with a name and description. The test kit contains the follow tabs.

  • Application Details
  • Automated Tests
  • Monitored Tests
  • Manual Tests

The following sections discuss these tabs in more detail.

 

Application Details

The Applications Details tab lists the application package and enables you to specify images that will be evaluated later in the testing procedure (see the screen shot at the start of this article for an example)

The Application package box lists the path to the application package (XAP file) for your application, which by default is the BinRelease folder of the currently selected project. .

The Applications Details tab also enables you to specify the images that will represent your application in the Marketplace. These images will be tested as part of the test kit. If you do not specify the required images, your application will not pass the tests in the test kit. The following table lists the images that you can specify.

image

image

Automated Tests

The Automated Tests tab provides tests that evaluate the basic criteria of your application, such as application size, capabilities required by your application, and the presence and size of application images.

NB Note that the project needs to be built in release mode in order to run these tests:

  image

You run the tests by clicking the Run Tests button. When the tests complete, you will receive a pass or fail result for each test. You will also receive a description of the test and any error messages that are relevant. You can use the results of the Capability Validation test to update the WMAppManifest.xml file with the correct information.  If a test fails you should use the provided information to fix the issue and run the tests again. You should repeat this process until your application has passed all the tests in this section.

My initial automated test results give detail on changes required prior to marketplace submission:

image(Click on above image to enlarge)

Monitored Tests

The Monitored Tests tab provides a suite of tests that analyse the performance and reliability of your application during use on a device.

image(Click on above image to enlarge)

NB the above results come from an HD7 running the development release of Mango.

Manual Tests

The Manual Tests tab provides a series of test cases that you should complete with your application running on a Window Phone device:

image

This essentially provides a checklist of manual tests which you manage yourself via a dropdown box in the first column:

image

This should help improve on the quality of apps submitted to the marketplace if used correctly.  It should also ease the burden on the testers in the marketplace ingestion process!

[tweetmeme only_single=”false”]

Goblin Harvest (Update I)

imageWell I thought it time to give everyone an update on the progress we are making on ‘Goblin Harvest’, our first Mango specific game (as well as our first team based App).

As can be seen from the screenshots below great progress has been made on the functionality of the game, we also have an awesome soundtrack composed specially for the game by Jack Williams.  Some great sound effects and spectacular graphic special effects add to our excitement about this game!

Meanwhile Ian (Williams) is working on improving the game graphics in Expression Design while I battle the Mango Emulator on for me, one of the most exciting elements of the game – the “Quests and Trials”.  Without giving too much away these elements introduce a physical skills based element through manipulation of the new compass and gyro devices!*.

We are" currently on track for an early release, hopefully hitting the Mango launch itself. (And provided we can get our hands on one of the new hardware devices soon enough, it is going to be our most awesome release to date!)

“Beware the Marsh Fever”

* Don’t worry – the game will still be great fun on generation 1 devices with the “Quests and Trials” taking a slightly different path.

[tweetmeme only_single=”false”]

Goblin Harvest!

I have teamed up with Ian Williams (of Textise.Net and the Textise App fame) to work on a Windows Phone 7.1 strategy game to be called ‘Goblin Harvest’.  It’s my first real collaborative experience working on Windows Phone and I am pretty excited about it.

image

After several lengthy sessions (yes, down the pub) to hammer out ideas, the base graphics are done (OK still more work needed there!) and the gameplay is (almost fully) documented!

Coding has begun in earnest using the beta Mango SDK with a view to making this one of the first Mango based games to come out of the UK.image

Its a bit too early to discuss gameplay (developed by Ian Williams) safe to say that it  is tried and tested and already proving to be popular with local testers.

With a requirement to be able to view the whole board, but also to focus in on a specific areas of gameplay ‘pinch to zoom’ plays an important part in the design,  as does the rules engine that manages the randomised board layout – making every game unique.

Stand by for a Goblin Winter!

[tweetmeme only_single=”false”]