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LCH-705 (Feature Request)

Add support for importing non Ginever games

Description

Currently the import feature seems useless since it is assumed that all supported Ginever games will already be available to install via the launchers built in installer. Import feature should thus be used only to add non-ginever game exe's to the launcher (or be removed entirely)

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This issue is not related to any other issues

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Tinytimrob
Current Assignee Project Manager

Posted

The import function was created so that if you have to reinstall GineverLauncher for whatever reason, you can reimport your existing games rather than having to redownload them. Notably, you can install games wherever you want, outside the launcher install folder, so this is a perfectly plausible event that could happen.

The main point of confusion here is probably that you have failed to take into account GineverLauncher is a cross-platform application and so are the GinENGINE games.

When GinENGINE games are published, by default they don't come with their own EXE files (because they are JAR files which are launched by passing command line arguments to javaw.exe). The import feature does NOT import EXE files but actually imports entire installations along with various metadata. This is accomplished by reading a JSON file which gets placed in the install directory and which gets updated by the launcher to reflect the installed application and its current state.

While some games are now being shipped with EXE files, those EXE files are basically just fancy clones of javaw.exe and are not really required; they were made almost entirely to stop Task Manager from showing 'Java SE Platform Binary'. If you launch the games via the EXE files you will notice that the crash report screen never appears when the game crashes, because the crash report screen is actually part of GineverLauncher and not part of the games themselves. This is a side-effect of the fact that the games were never designed to be launched without GineverLauncher.

I'm not sure if a feature to import EXE files would be implemented. There is no such thing as an EXE file outside of Windows operating system so this would end up being a platform-exclusive bonus feature. The only thing I can realistically consider this is useful for is to try and use GineverLauncher as an alternative to launching games through Steam... and we didn't create GineverLauncher as a replacement to Steam. It is only intended as a tool to install and manage Ginever games without having to write a separate updating system for each game.

The main reason we aren't just using Steam is that it's not flexible enough to allow for the multi-branch software lifecycle approach that we have chosen to use for software development. Notably, the ability to install the same game multiple times is vital if you're doing both beta-testing with a test build and playing online with a release build, and with Steam you can only have a single version installed at once. Also, we would have to get every game approved through Greenlight before we could start the testing process which is obviously unviable.

For larger scale releases like Intryon it's plausible that we will try to get the games published on Steam anyway (albeit still requiring a GineverAccount to play).

So anyway, I'm struggling to justify coding this feature, when it's platform-specific and is mostly out of scope of purpose.

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