Android improvements - shadow maps, 64-bit support, upgrades and fixes

"Little Things" game on Android'
  • Shadow maps work on OpenGLES (Android and iOS) now!

  • The Android building tools, which are part of our build tool, were updated. We use a new version of Gradle and Android Gradle Plugin under the hood, and by default we compile using Android platform 27. The minimal supported Android version is lower of course — it is 16 (Android 4.1), Android NDK doesn’t support older versions now.

  • You can now build an APK for 64-bit version of Android, which will be required by the Google Play store since August 2019. Use our build tool to compile an APK with both 32-bit and 64-bit variants (for best compatibility): castle-engine package --target=android. Alternatively, you can build a 64-bit-only APK with castle-engine package --os=android --cpu=aarch64. This requires FPC 3.3.1 with Android/Aarch64 cross-compiler.

  • The default project type is now “integrated”, which allows to define various services and also automatically adds OpenAL (sounds), Tremolo (OggVorbis reading), FreeType (font file reading) libraries to your Android project, if they seem necessary (if your data files contain some sound files, .ogg, .ttf etc. files).

  • The latest source code of the Android libraries we use is available in relevant CGE repositories: android-openal, android-tremolo, android-freetype.

  • A couple of bugfixes to Android building were applied. We now use Android NDK platform 16 (for 32-bit builds), not newer, to really work even on Android 4.1. We fixed FreeType usage (so that it works even on older Android devices). And we improved the documentation how to setup your Android SDK/NDK environment.