Friday, January 15, 2010

Getting started with Java ME

So you want to make your own Java games for Java enabled mobile phones. It's either that or you stumbled upon this page by mistake.

Just like I said in the introductory post, we'll be using Netbeans IDE on the tutorials that will be presented here. Here's a list of things you will need and where to get them:
  • Java SE Development Kit (JDK) 6.0 Update 18 | Download Site
  • NetBeans IDE 6.8 | Download Site
    (choose the download button under the column where Java ME is ticked : "Java" or "All")
...or you can get them both at the same time:
  • JDK 6.0 Update 17 bundled with NetBeans IDE 6.8 | Download Site
If you downloaded them individually:
  • Install JDK 6.0
  • Install Netbeans IDE 6.8
If you downloaded the bundle:
  • Install JDK + Netbeans IDE bundle.
That's it! You can now start making Java ME applications for your Java enabled mobile phone.

To prevent some errors from popping up while working on your mobile game, I recommend ticking on all the packages when installing NetBeans IDE except for the bundled servers such as Apache Tomcat or GlassFish Enterprise Server.

There's one more thing we have to add to our checklist - a way to transfer your game or application onto your mobile phone. This depends on the phone you're working on. Here are some options you might be able to choose from :
  • Bluetooth - Use this if your phone is Bluetooth capable.
  • Infrared Cable - Use this if you don't have Bluetooth.
  • USB/Serial Cable - Use this if you have neither Bluetooth nor Infrared
  • Card Reader - Use this if your phone has a memory card and you can't use any of the above.
Aside from the cable/dongle you want to use, you might also need the software and drivers to make them work. You can get these from your phone's manufacturer site or the CD-Rom that came with your phone. An example of the kind of software you might need is the Nokia PC Suite for Nokia cellphones.

Obviously, you will also need an image editor for creating the graphics you will use in your game. But for starters you can also find resources on the internet that offer sprites, tiles and other graphic content for you to practice on. Some of which I have added to the links section.

Alright, I think that's about it for our checklist. If you have some questions place a comment under this post.

1 comment:

Tiago Gala said...

internet is also an inexpensive (depending on your plan) way to upload applications to your mobile phone in case none of the other options are available.