My name is Gabriel Zang, I’m a professional technical and creative writer with 10+ years of experience.
I just wanted to share my experience with Solar2D to turn my books into a great immersive reading experience and hope to encourage everyone on the same path to use this awesome engine.
Back in early 2018 I came across what back in the day was Corona SDK, and I saw a great opportunity to put my book on everybody’s hands around the world. Even though my books are available through Amazon, many of my readers are from 3rd world countries, or countries where Amazon markets are not accesible (Eastern European countries for example).
Living in 3rd world country is no easy feat, and many possibilities are straightforwardly blocked, for example having my books published through Google Books, but I’m not a quitter, and what came to my mind was “if they don’t wanna publish you as a book, you better publish it as an app!”.
And there I went. My 2018 experience failed. Many things happened which prevented me to move forward, but I resumed the project in late 2019, and now one of my books is already available in the Google Play Store!
Not only was I able to make a cool-looking with full navigational and bookmarking features (this last thanks to the awesome GBC Data Cabinet Plugin https://marketplace.coronalabs.com/corona-plugins/gbc-data-cabinet), which enhance the reading experience with immersive audio tracks.
If you ask me, a dream come true, and a much awaited release for my readers as well!
I now have the hard work ahead of turning my other 4 books into immersive reading apps as well in a similar fashion, but if you ask me, “Was Solar2D a good tool to do this?” I would say “You freakin’ bet”.
What did I use?
- Scene handling: Awesome and simple to use. Each page a new scene, and work the image and sound resources cleanly and encapsulatedly
- GBC Data Cabinet plugin: Allowed me to build a bookmark system by saving them in local tables, as well as a couple things more (e.g. premium activation features)
- Sound and image libraries: To display the images and run the sound tracks
As far as the experience, quite low learning curve is #1. Figure out I learnt how to use scenes and the plugin and built a whole book reading “sub-engine” in about 2 months, and the rest of 3 months of development were spent pretty much 20% coding and 80% resource making.
I surely spent more time with image/sound editing tools than coding, so yeah, Solar2D RULES.
Thanks for your read, and I hope you enjoy the app if you come across this post!