Sonic 3 A.I.R. Release Thread

Discussion in 'Fangaming Discussion' started by 360, Apr 7, 2019.

  1. Sappharad

    Sappharad

    Oldbie
    1,383
    65
    28
    Eukaryot posted a message on the AIR discord server in late October saying that Android might be ready in early 2021. Nothing else has been announced publicly, as far as I know.
     
  2. Hi Sappharad,

    Thanks for the confirmation! I heard about the Android versions too so I’m hoping iOS doesn’t get left out (I’m an iPhone guy lol).. would love to see it become reality.

    Awesome work on the Mac ports!!
     
  3. BlueSpeedsterYT

    BlueSpeedsterYT

    Now rendered in full 3D Member
    26
    2
    3
    Unrelated but uh... Good luck with getting S3AIR on iOS without Apple doing stupid shit (I am also an iPhone user as well, and even I admit that this won't happen officially).

    Outside of that, I am very impressed by what you've done Eukaryot, wishing you the best of luck for the future.
     
  4. Yeah I’m one of those optimistic folks but from a realistic standpoint, I’ll agree with you due to all the hurdles this will have to cross over to even become reality but I’ve seen crazier things happen.
     
  5. Bulmer

    Bulmer

    from off of Sonic the Comic the Podcast Oldbie
    2
    0
    1
    Ello! Hope this is the right place to ask this, I've just shimmied in from Google.

    I just played through AIR, loved it, it's perfect, well done everyone. But it (or something between me and it) is doing very funny things with my controller, which is an old wired XBox 360 pad. Randomly (but not ENTIRELY randomly, like it feels like it coincides with level starts or similar), the game will think I'm holding left. Swapping USB ports fixed it for a while, then each port took on its own weird bug (I can't remember them now, but similar things, so let's say in one port up was being held etc), and now swapping ports or unplugging and replugging doesn't seem to fix the problem.

    Of course I tried it in a couple of different games to see if it was the controller that was the problem, and it worked perfectly in those. Is this a known bug?
     
  6. Graxer

    Graxer

    Member
    My guess is that your Xbox 360 pad has very minor drift. From what I understand, games often have a "deadzone" implemented within them (a range the stick can be moved without it registering as input). Maybe Sonic 3 A.I.R. doesn't have a deadzone (or has one which is too small).

    On my Switch I used to have drift where, when playing Sonic 1 (Sega AGES version), it would cause Sonic to randomly start running to the right, but it only happened in that one game until the drift became worse over time and it started happening in all my games.
     
  7. BlazeHedgehog

    BlazeHedgehog

    A "Community Enigma"? Oldbie
    1,463
    5
    18
    I'll second suggestion that it could just be analog drift. I was actually having an extremely similar problem, right down to the controller accidentally registering left inputs, on my brand new 8bitdo SN30+ when I was emulating games in RetroArch on my phone. It was driving me crazy, and I was convinced it was a bluetooth issue, until I did some digging in RetroArch's settings and found the analog deadzone was set to 0. Bumping it up to even 0.1 fixed the problem.

    Sadly, Windows doesn't have very robust controller configuration options. The best you could do is simply open the "Test USB Game Controllers" thing in Windows, go over to the Settings tab, and click "Calibrate." This will ask you to move your analog stick around and I think try to discern and apply deadzone settings automatically.

    A little bit of googling suggests in the Windows 10 Store there's an "Xbox Accessories" app that lets you configure controller settings, including a "stiffness" slider that apparently seems to relate to deadzones, but it sounds like it might only be setup to work with Xbox One and Xbox XS controllers, not 360 ones.

    Steam has controller deadzone settings, but it only applies for games launched through Steam. You'd have to add Sonic 3 AIR to Steam as an external application for that to work.

    Worst comes to worst, it may just be time to invest in a new controller. I rather enjoy that 8bitdo I mentioned. It's mainly built for the Switch, but you can put it in to an "Xbox Mode" that makes it show up in Windows and it works pretty well, wired or wireless. I also use a Playstation 4 controller a lot, but that can be way more tricky to make it play nice with games that expect an Xbox controller.
     
    Last edited: Dec 18, 2020
  8. Zycor

    Zycor

    Unlike Sonic, I don't chuckle. Member
    175
    0
    16
    Beats me.
    DS4 Windows makes use of the PS4 controller on Windows a lot more compatible. It's also possible to do with just a USB cable, as Bluetooth in my experience works, but it can be a pain to get the thing to actually connect to your PC. I've had so many situations where Windows just refuses to recognize it and I usually have to uninstall and reinstall it. So honestly just using USB makes more sense if push comes to shove on the Windows front.

    It could also just be a faulty installation of Windows like I seem to have. One of the recent Windows 10 updates killed the ability for me to do some things that make zero sense as to why they don't work. Like if I click a bar on the task bar and move the mouse up to look at recent commands/files, it tells me the files are missing or the feature can't be used. Good thing I have no idea what that is called because I've been trying to look it up. The lists of things on that menu update but I can't use them for whatever reason. Makes exiting steam a little more of a pain. The stuff in the "hidden icons" area of the task bar all work fine.

    Perhaps something to do with having upgraded from 7 when they were still doing that for free. I know you can do a repair but I'm worried about losing data.
     
  9. So far with what I’ve played, AIR is still playable on the newest MacOS Big Sur update which is a relief.. hopefully with the news of the other Taxman port decompilations, we will have (un) official remastered builds of all the classics on Windows and Mac
     
    Last edited: Jan 30, 2021
  10. Sappharad

    Sappharad

    Oldbie
    1,383
    65
    28
    Sonic 3 A.I.R. will also be coming to iOS on all devices that support iOS 13 and newer. It will not be distributed via the App Store due to the need for users to provide their copy of the game ROM among other things, but it will work on regular iOS devices with no jailbreaking and no computer required to install. The goal is to release the iOS port around the same time as Android. There will also be a web version available that can run on devices with a modern web browser for example with a Chromebook.
    3air_ios1.jpg

    That's the short version of the announcement. For additional background, read on.
    3air_ios2@0.5x.jpg

    The two new ports are one in the same. The iOS port is actually a web app, but the entire thing functions offline without any internet connection after a one time setup to download the game data. This began as an experiment last October while I still had an iPhone X from 2017. I upgraded to an iPhone 12 Pro in October but prior to that I rushed to test out a proof of concept for this before I got rid of the 3 year old phone. I wanted to see if the phone was fast enough to run the game in Safari when compiled to WebAssembly, and to my surprise it was getting the full 60fps out of the box in Software Rendering mode. After some additional tweaks to the proof of concept in early November to ensure that a user would be able to provide their own game ROM, I put the web port on hold until after Christmas while Eukaryot continued making changes to the game for Android. At that point I picked it back up and continued making changes to make the game feasible to play as an iOS app.

    But if it's a web port, how is it getting installed to my phone as an app? This goes back to 2007 when the first iPhone was released. The App Store did not exist until iOS 2.0 and Apple originally wanted developers to write applications for the iPhone as web widgets. The functionality for installing websites as home screen apps has been in iOS since the beginning but with the popularity of the App Store it has not been used very often until recently when game streaming services like Microsoft's xCloud and Google Stadia started using it as an alternative to distributing their services via the store. Web Apps have access to the same features a browser does, and with modern Web APIs like WebGL and gamepad input, everything needed for a port of Sonic 3 A.I.R. is there. The one difficulty in this process is that from a browser you're not getting direct access to your computer or phone's storage. All file management will be offered via the app. During first time setup, after the game data downloads you'll be prompted to select your Sonic 3 & Knuckles ROM. This will be saved inside the app along with the game data so you only have to do it once per install. On iOS you can select files from any folder available in the files app, such as an iCloud drive or Dropbox. Once the game is running, the in-game quit option will exit to a file manager that you can use to get files in and out of your save data folder such as for installing mods or transferring your save files to or from another device. Since some people intentionally like to stay on older versions of AIR such as speed runners, updating to a new version will be done manually and you'll stay on the version you install.

    The game is already playable at this point with full OpenGL support, the majority of remaining work on the iOS/web port are the differences specific to this version. For example, the file manager described earlier hasn't been built yet, only the pieces necessary for initial install and setup. It's been confirmed by testers to be running fine on devices as old as the iPhone 6S. I'll provide more details on any specific things when it's closer to a public release or preview.
     
  11. My man!! Both you and Eukaryot are absolute legends and we don’t deserve you at all lol!! I can’t believe this is coming!! Thank you so much for the backstory of getting this game working on iOS (very well explained btw) and I cannot wait to get my hands on it!! You guys are keeping the legacy of Sonic 3&K alive and I hope this gets out to many more fans!! Will be on the lookout for it once it’s officially out!
     
  12. Rrose80149

    Rrose80149

    Member
    40
    3
    8
    I'm using Samsung galaxy Luna pro j3. I wish you best of luck.
     
  13. To @Sappharad and/or @Eukaryot:

    Regarding the screenshot of AIR running on iOS, will that control/button layout be the one used for the mobile ports? Or will it have the same layout as the Taxman ports with the lives and small pause button on the top right and the digital analog stick? I mean it doesn’t really matter as long as the controls work (which I’m sure they will) but I’m just curious to see how you guys will handle it.

    Also I know this is more of a personal thing, but I would love to customize the app icon to make it look similar to the previous remasters in how it uses the Japanese box art (I don’t mind the current AIR icon with Sonic, Tails, and the Tornado so it’s a win win either way if it can’t be customized)

    upload_2021-1-24_18-53-12.png
     
  14. JoseTB

    JoseTB

    Tech Member
    700
    44
    28
    You may want to look into Apache Cordova, which solves this exact issue (allows native access while in remaining in web tech). Canvas/WebGL performance should be 1:1 to that of the default OS browser installed on the device (Latest Safari on iOS, latest Chrome on Android) since WebViews these days are in sync with them. This approach would require jailbreak on iOS for distribution though, since it packages everything into a standalone app.
     
  15. RDNexus

    RDNexus

    Member
    Something that saddens me a little is the fact maybe we'll never see S3K Special Stages get the 3D treatment Sonic2 '13 got.
     
  16. Sappharad

    Sappharad

    Oldbie
    1,383
    65
    28
    That defeats the whole purpose of making it a web app. I'm a registered iOS developer, nothing is preventing me from making a native port aside from the app store rules. I'd rather do a native port than use cordova since then you could just upload files normally from a computer. Having said that, I found a nice open source file manager to use and I'm going to write an emscripten filesystem connector for it. It'll make getting files in and out similar to using something like the Dropbox app. I'll show that off once it's been integrated.
    The icon will need to be the same for everyone. It's technically possible to make it customizable but it's a fair amount of work and given the scope of the other things I have left to do first we're probably better off picking a good one to stick with for now.

    How about an icon contest? Anyone who wants can submit an icon for the iOS port. (If Euka wants to use it for Android or not, we'll see.) I'm not sure if it's a good idea or not to spam this thread with them, so I guess if you don't want to post it here you can PM it to me. Arbitrary deadline of 11PM PST on Friday evening Jan 28th. The following day I will post a poll for people to vote for the best one. If there are more than 5 entries, I'll pick the best 5 to put in the poll. Suggested resolution is 512x512 (in case I decide to use it for the Mac app later since macOS 11 has rounded square icons now too), but it will be scaled down on the phone to whatever the correct resolution is. Or if everyone likes the one Jordan posted and just wants to help refine that to make it cleaner (the character art is lower res than the rest for example) we could just settle on that one. In short, yes, let's change the icon but let's also get some input to make sure it's perfect and goes well with the others.

    Edit: The submissions can also be made on the Sonic 3 AIR Discord server in the showcase channel with the hashtag #IconContest. I'll search for the hashtag on Saturday morning.
     
    Last edited: Jan 27, 2021
  17. I love @Sappharad ’s idea!! As long as @Eukaryot is ok with it (I mean it’s his work at the end of the day) then here’s hoping we can get some more creative minds involved to see what cool icons can be created.

    On a side note, unfortunately I didn’t create that icon myself. I just found it via a Google search and I thought it would be really cool to use since it would match up nicely with the official remasters on iOS.. All credit goes to Sonic Blast (YouTuber) for that creation.

    I’m just happy to get an idea like this rolling :thumbsup:

    EDIT: I contacted Sonic Blast on YouTube and he said he’s perfectly fine with using the icon I posted as long as he gets credit for it. Whether @Sappharad or @Eukaryot want to use it or not, or if they or other Retro users or Discord members want to touch it up to make it better or create something original, or just stick with the original AIR icon itself, its up to them.. best of luck everyone and can’t wait for the mobile release as well as which icon will be chosen!!
     
    Last edited: Jan 27, 2021
  18. Eukaryot

    Eukaryot

    Tech Member
    43
    64
    18
    Sonic 3 A.I.R.
    Yep, I'm fully supporting the icon contest idea! :)
     
  19. Rrose80149

    Rrose80149

    Member
    40
    3
    8
    Would this cover it for the icon? Used from the petition.
     

    Attached Files:

  20. Phins

    Phins

    Member
    17
    0
    1
    posting for the first time in over 11 years to very politely ask you to consider a Vita port alongside the Switch port