Mancala Classic

Hi folks,

After more than 20 years of dabbling in game development both professionally and in my spare time and after so many shelved projects, I finally have a game out there of my own! :joy:

Thought I’d share it with you guys here, since I used PlayCanvas to make it.

I decided once and for all to bite the bullet and actually get something out there in the world and to get that long-time sought notch on my belt. It’s a small and simple game, but that was very much deliberate, because I needed to make sure that I would actually finish it! :sweat_smile: A small but significant personal milestone.

I’ve used the raw PlayCanvas engine without the editor, so I could work locally. It has taken me roughly 3 months from the very start to the actual release today.

Thank you guys for providing such a lovely open-source engine for everyone :heart: Hope you like the game

Special thanks to @will @mvaligursky & @yaustar for always providing great assistance when called upon


Very nicely polished!

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This is really beautifully made - congratulations.

I was wondering if you had any feedback on how we can make the engine even better for you. Did you encounter any pain points while you made the game?

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Thanks @will

Pain points… Hmm

I guess my biggest engine challenge was actually the shadows. I ended up with a custom solution of hardware instance rendering some textured quads onto a RenderTexture to get full control of opacity and size. The board then has a few custom shader chunks to use said shadow map. I simply couldn’t get dynamic shadows to behave the way i wanted with bias and acne and resolutions. But my use case is probably also a little niche with such a close up view.

Another thing I noticed is that SoundComponents seem a little unstable when used for long clips (like music). They sometimes seem to stop playing and not resuming when tabbing between tabs in the browser.

Other than that I don’t have anything directly engine related, I think. Happy to have found it and happy to use it :muscle:


Thanks for the great feedback. Are you planning on making any more games?

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Always :stuck_out_tongue: I don’t have a serious one in the pipe at the moment, though

But I’ll definitely be using PlayCanvas for sure if we’re talking HTML5


Hey, sick game! Would love to connect with you on Discord or something to ask you questions about how Engine-only was for you, as I’m wondering whether to make that decision myself.

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Hey thanks, I don’t mind taking it here :blush:

Going engine only was a personal choice I made because the past years we’ve seen third party engines do unattractive things retroactively, rendering their games either unplayable or tarnished in the eyes of the developer. Open source was my one and only reason

Now believe me when I say that I think the PlayCanvas Editor is great, because it is! I’ve worked with it professionally for a couple of years. I just chose to go without because i want to be sure that I can still edit and play my games when I’m going down Nostalgia Lane in 20 years. Realistically, I can’t know that for certain without working locally and open source.

With that comes a price though! No visual aid or tooling unless you make it yourself - and that’s a rabbit hole that can eat up all your time. I’ve made my own rudimentary editor with PlayCanvas and PCUI in an Electron app just for personal use. Along with some build tools. It’s nowhere near what the online editor is, but it was enough to get me this far. But I probably cannot recommend going that route, unless you are as paranoid as I am. You easily end up a tooling surgeon instead of a game developer :sweat_smile:


Did you use the fancy new Engine Gizmos in your Editor? They’re currently used in SuperSplat but we’ll migrate the Editor to use them sometime soon. Also, we’re about to add a new set of camera controls (orbit, fly, etc) that can be use across different apps. You should probably keep an eye out for those too.

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Great work!

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That could have saved me lots of time :smiling_face_with_tear: I made my own…

Ought to switch. They look great!

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