Mac version available now! (some notes about how it works)
I got the OSX version to work! A_DESKTOP_LOVE_STORY can now run on Mac.
Also, fixed a bug in the Windows version. The underscores in the name are my versioning system now.
So, OK, the OSX version...
The way this works is that the A_DESKTOP_LOVE_STORY folder HAS to be placed on your desktop.
It cannot be nested. Instructions are given with the download, just read the .txt file.
The files check against the desktop path. The Windows version is able to check if a file is relative to another, and that makes it a lot more graceful, but this is the best that I can do given Gatekeeper's restrictions.
The issue appears to be App Translocation ( https://lapcatsoftware.com/articles/app-translocation.html )
"Starting with macOS Sierra, running a newly-downloaded app from a disk image, archive, or the Downloads directory will cause Gatekeeper to isolate that app at a unspecified read-only location in the filesystem. This will prevent the app from accessing code or content using relative paths."
(The above link is the issue I encountered... Because the location changed, I couldn't read the file's path after download.)
So if I really wanted to get this to work it should ideally have a .pkg or .dmg to install. Just downloading and running won't work for stuff that deals with your filesystem, or makes changes.
I don't think this is ideal for this type of idea. Specifically a set of different, unrelated, files that communicate with eachother. To be most functional in the environment OSX seems to expect ONE application, and that's just how you should build it... I mean, this is from my trial and error. There are probably other workarounds, or ways of doing it. I'm not that much of a fan of asking people to install something this simple, and I'm not sure how functional that is for something that requires many separate programs (both this and Cyberpet Graveyard are appealing because of lots of separate things giving the feel of "a slice of someone else's desktop to explore")... but maybe that's pushing the extent of what OSX is ok with.
In the event that it might help others, here are the links he shared with me. These are all very helpful and relevant in terms of getting pointed in the right direction for learning "3rd party distribution on osx".
Flat Package Format - The missing documentation http://s.sudre.free.fr/Stuff/Ivanhoe/FLAT.html
Using Ant to automatically create MacOSX DMG disk images - http://www.rkuntz.org/pmwiki.php?n=Code.AntDiskImage
OS X: Creating Packages from the Command Line - Tutorial and a Makefile - Part I - http://thegreyblog.blogspot.com/2014/06/os-x-creating-packages-from-command_2.ht...
OS X: Creating Packages from the Command Line - Tutorial and a Makefile - Part II - http://thegreyblog.blogspot.com/2014/06/os-x-creating-packages-from-command.html
Packages - http://s.sudre.free.fr/Software/Packages/about.html
Packages Resources - http://s.sudre.free.fr/Software/Packages/resources.html
Packages User Guide - http://s.sudre.free.fr/Software/documentation/Packages/en_2017/index.html
DropDMG - https://c-command.com/dropdmg/
DropDMG Manual - https://c-command.com/dropdmg/manual
Also a quality resource:
Apple Developer Certificates - https://github.com/Corsaair/helloworld-documentation/wiki/apple_cert
Signing Under Mac OS X - https://github.com/Corsaair/helloworld-documentation/wiki/sign_pkg
3rd party Mac apps are a bit more restricted than Windows. Windows was a charm to work with, which was funny. I thought it would be the other way around. It's been a long time since I did stuff like this, and I always worked with Windows.
I'm happy to see that not much has changed in Windows (not THAT much), and that it's still relatively conductive to odd things like this.
It's better for weird independently distributed freeware.
To berate the point further, because I see the following sentiment often enough: "make one app and don't mess with the OS, security is important and you shouldn't build something like this, and don't be surprised if..."
Ok. Yes. I do build this stuff professionally, and realize the importance of security and complying with guidelines.
...But also, guidelines can easily become restrictive, especially if you intentionally try making things that are unconventional.
To quote someone that commented on Twitter:
"My heart swells when I run across true, weird, heartfelt, techy freeware. They're not even trying to fit into a market and it's so much better for it."
Yes. Thank you. "Not trying to fit into a market" being the running theme here.
Unconventional freeware is a vital part of computer culture. It always has been. The same as unconventional games are vital to the game ecosystem. Any format evolves because of experimentation. What we consider normal, and necessary today, started as an unusual idea... That's the basis of it.
Experimentation is possible only if we don't overvalue such restrictions.
Something like A_DESKTOP_LOVE_STORY will never really work in an AppStore. It's just a folder. The fact that it's a small directory structure is important. The fact that it's two separate files, that you don't need to install, is also important.
The necessity to interact with your OS is important...
A lot of my games will never work in an AppStore. I have plenty of petty rejections to illustrate that official storefronts are just not a home for things like this (Apple really didn't like the use of glitch art and "simulated error" but without it it just wouldn't be the same game. They don't like the use of old UI's. The interaction is deceptive...).
So when do guidelines become censorship?
If I wanted to make a game that hides itself through-ought someone's OS and (safely, within good reason) does stuff to that, I should be able to make something that questionable, and people that really want to run it should be able to have access to it. Yes, I realize that sounds like a virus, but the intention should set itself apart.
I think we've gotten a lot more conservative about what we think is allowed on a computer or not.
I remember early freeware (up to mid 2000's) as being this fun wild source of experimentation. Sure you might be downloading a virus, but wow (if that's the case) what a cool virus!
No really. If I want to, I should be able to.
The same as if I wanted to play a walking sim that's full of blinky colors that give you a migraine I should. Please don't protect me from blinky colors.
As things get gentrified, and we start placing lots of focus on usability, streamlining, best-practices... we lose experimentation.
Honestly, I fear, and can very much see that eventually experimental walking sims, with blinky graphics, and alt-games will be looked on as a phase that's thankfully gone in game history. The same way as we look at net-art and are happy that websites don't stand out anymore. Gentrification seems inevitable. Everything is streamlined, and has a look, visual style, functional style, that we agree on, and we don't really question if there's room for more. That "more" might even be viewed as a bad thing...
In reality, the web doesn't belong to anybody, software doesn't belong to anybody, the ability to distribute and run this stuff shouldn't be dictated by anyone.
Both can co-exist. We can have our agreed upon standards, and room for experimental stuff.
I'm coming from a point of view that you have a computer. You learn how to program, you can do anything. It's your playground. Make your wildest dreams come true. That's what it felt like when I was downloading early games and freeware online. Anything seemed possible.
And yes, of course, learning to exist within that environment is important, and following the agreed on guidelines for existing there are important, but when do these start being counterproductive to freeware?
When does curation, and guidelines to exist on a platform, become censorship?
Is it right to be so protective? When does that become harmful to independent software?
I don't think companies that make OS's should own a store in which they distribute software for that OS because it easily turns into a monopoly where people are forced to distribute through that store. For example, the fact that Apple makes the iPhone AND also owns the AppStore has not done us much good. I'm saying this as an independent dev. It feels like everything is forced through there (which it is, there is no "AppStore alternative"), and the lack of competition is hell for anyone that wants to create anything even remotely different.
So, in many ways, I think that security and curation often turn into excuses for controlling a platform.
This isn't healthy for experimental freeware. Alternatives are important (they always will be, otherwise a platform grows stale). Take the trajectory the web has been heading as an example. Experimental use cases are suffering because of it (example: web games under the new web audio changes that google is pushing for).
I hope that desktop Windows doesn't change. It's nice to see that it still allows you to download and run questionable things.
Leave a comment
Log in with itch.io to leave a comment.