What is it like to test a new CRYENGINE feature? We spoke with three CRYENGINE community members about their experience testing GitHub pre-release.
CE: How long have you been part of the CRYENGINE community?
Filip: Since the Crysis 1 Mod SDK release.
Zeph: I've been around since 2007, when the Crysis Beta was released. It blew my mind that Crytek released a level editor for "that crazy jungle game" before it was even being sold, so I joined the forums to figure out how to make levels. Once the FreeSDK was out, I started teaching myself how to code.
Oscar: Since FreeSDK times, but I have been much more active in the last year.
CE: Tell us why Git is great.
Filip: Git makes it easy to collaborate and share project development via services such as GitHub.com. With this new setup, anyone can contribute to CRYENGINE right there on the public repository.
Zeph: My first interest in Git was for off-site backup purposes. I have local backups, but they would all be gone if there was a fire or similar.
Oscar: Working with code you definitely need to manage versions, and Git is my favorite way to do it. Also being the most popular, you have more tools and integrations, and that makes it easier to collaborate on community source projects.
CE: Why did you want to help test Git pre-release?
Filip: I was eager to help out and contribute to a stable release.
Zeph: I wanted to help for two reasons. The first reason was a bit selfish. I've got a coding book for CRYENGINE in the works and wanted a head start on the topic of GitHub. The second reason dates back to EaaS when version 3.7 was rolled out. At the time, getting source code working on new setups was difficult. I wanted to help and provide data to help make everything run smoothly.
Oscar: I always try to help the community and spending some of my time could help others have a better experience.
CE: Were there any interesting surprises during the GitHub testing?
Filip: I was surprised by how much work goes into something that may seem very basic to users. You can’t just push the repository to GitHub.com. Crytek (and David specifically) did a lot of great work to make the developer flow easy to use and understand.
Oscar: Things are not as easy as they seem to be! It was interesting to see how much effort Crytek, and specially David, put into trying to do things as well as possible to make the process easier for the community. But sometimes the effort isn’t much appreciated by the community.
CE: Has testing the GitHub release affected your perspective on CRYENGINE development?
Filip: It was very interesting to get an early look at the GitHub repository with a direct feed of the on-going work done by Crytek engineers on CRYENGINE. I'm excited to see how GitHub features, such as pull requests, will contribute to the engine.
Zeph: There are some passionate developers working on the engine. Working with David on this test only gave me a small view into the entire company, so I don't want to say it changed much.
Oscar: Positively. To see that many Crytek members are involved in this task and how much work David puts into solving as many problems as he can. We don’t see this effort from the outside, so sometimes we don’t appreciate it.