Jonathan Ive, CDO of Apple Inc., was asked how it feels to be a designer in the best company in the world. «I don’t know, – he replied – I’ve never worked for re::public».
Sprites graphics is used in most 2D projects and there is probably no project which would not use atlases. In some teams designer can create atlases just compiling frames, but there are no designers in other teams who could create an atlas and this responsibility is taken by an external program. In our team sprites were compiled by programmers.
Let’s get started
The current state of things could not be called optimal division of labour and we decided to correct it. The team developed the architecture and required functionality, bought some beer, prepared hookah and started to work.
As a prototype we made a program creating atlases and adjusting sizes to the multiple of four – for more qualified compressing in Unity3D. But we had a little bit more beer and we, as real scientists, decided to not stop on that.
Nothing is perfect
Adjustment of our utility for Unity engine brought some problems: engine documentation in some sections leaves much to be desired, there were not many examples of working with GUI and the engine had no scaling algorithms.
Our programmers prepared and went to astral. They came back with a lot of goodies: our plugin learned to create atlases and animations, to set pivots in frames and also minimize file size for different platforms. With a little help from a hammer and some devil’s help they included scaling into the plugin (sic!).
Hard working fluently jumped to relaxing and backward
Our team had been refining the project for some time satisfying the needs of designers. Also they spent a lot of time to optimize the program and to write documentation, trying to delay one moment…
The moment of release
Having studied the market we horrified: there are lots of similar plugins in Unity asset store. How to stand out from the rest of the plugins?
First, we decided that our work had been good enough for us to earn three dollars apiece, the lowest price for declared functionality.
Second, ads! Through long discussions appeared godlike concept: What if we take what Apple does without money, equipment and abilities? So, during long nights we created our ads video (if someone is interested in results: link).
As a result, we automatized our designers’ work, studied lots of scaling algorithms and experienced through Unity abilities. (if someone is interested in, you can use this link).
All code of the project is documented and the authors should be credited. Our team are open for your suggestions and reviews. You can connect with us by firstname.lastname@example.org, and learn about updates or by subscribing to us in social networks. Farewell!