Lua Studio - The Evolution of AddOn Studio for World of Warcraft
Hey folks, as we've "gone dark" for a while on this project, I wanted to give a quick update on where we are with the development of this project and our goals going forward.
- Goal #1 - Improve stability and bugs and make the project maintainable - One of the biggest challenges we've had is maintaining the code base and being responsive to additions/updates.
- Goal #2 - Be a good code example for the Visual Studio Shell - We should be a great example of what a customized IDE experience can be, including using best practices for language, colorization, project system files, and more, including using Visual Studio 2010.
- Goal #3 - Make a general purpose Lua IDE - A lot of you were asking for the syntax colorization, and editing environment of AddOn Studio to use for any Lua project, without the Warcraft specific content.
- Goal #4 - Build an extensibility model for games - Similarly, Warcraft is one game that uses the Lua runtime, but there are many others, and game companies should feel free to pick up and distribute their own IDE.
The Bad news: Cutting the Visual Designer
One of the hard decisions we had to make was that we had to cut the visual editor. This was done for a number of reasons, we feel we never got the experience right and complex addons never rendered correctly inside the IDE and Blizzard doesn't expose an API to preview/render FrameXML either. The visual designer was also the #1 cause of tool issues.
While this is a tough thing to do right, it probably could be done correctly, but we don't have the resources to provide a visual editor for Warcraft (or for each Lua-enabled game) and it was the #1 cause of tool issues. Going forward we will include code-only editing for FrameXML files, but it does provide XML IntelliSense (just not a visual designer).
For those of you who do like the visual editor, you can continue to use the current version of AddOn Studio, but we don't have the resources to support that.
Introducing Lua Studio - the evolution of AddOn Studio for World of Warcraft
- Better installation experience
- Enables standalone Lua development
- Works using the Visual Studio 2010
- Includes Warcraft support: FrameXML code editing and FrameXML IntelliSense, custom project and item templates, warcraft TOC (Table of Contents) file support
- Provide a solid Lua Code editing experience - syntax colorization and highlighting, IntelliSense, navigation, Find/Replace, Bookmarks, GoTo Line, Full Screen mode
We are planning to release a beta of Lua Studio soon that will include most of the key features listed above.
We are also looking at adding 1-2 more "light-up" features that we could build given our resource constraints, like:
- Integrated debugger (for Lua files only)
- Rename Refactoring
As always, your feedback is important to us and thank you for your support over the years.