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Arron Washington
(@thunderboots)
New Member
Joined: 2 years ago
Posts: 4
19/06/2020 9:41 pm  

I'm a software developer with a strong C# background and I'm looking to optimize my workflow by leveraging a visual scripting solution. I've previously used Bolt (not great -- poor custom node support) and FlowCanvas (very good -- but has a fair share of bugs), and I have somehow stumbled across Flow Reactor just as I'm preparing to embark on my next project.

Some of Flow Reactor's workflows raise an eyebrow, particularly the "unique instance" setting (which seems like it should be the default?) and being unable to connect variables via sockets/ports, which my intuition tells me could result in the Blackboard being flooded with temporary variables. The API documentation implies we pick which port to use based on a 0-based index rather than a concrete reference we can modify / change the visual position of, etc, etc, etc.

So before I drop the money -- I know refunds are available but attaining them is a huge hassle -- I'd like to know more about the methodology that went into Flow Reactor's design, and why these kinds of choices were made. There's a lot of visual scripting assets out there, but for some of them it's kind of obvious they haven't been used in production and are more-or-less based off the developer's whimsy. Flow Reactor seems like it has had a lot of thought put into it at least, but I'm having trouble envisioning the advantages (or disadvantages) of its workflow.


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doorfortyfour
(@doorfortyfour)
Member Admin
Joined: 2 years ago
Posts: 13
20/06/2020 9:23 am  

Hello Arron,

First of all welcome to the FlowReactor forum 🙂


I've started developing FlowReactor during the development of our game MarZ: Tactical Base Defense. During this time I've gathered a lot of experience and knew what works good and what could be improved, so since then, the editor has been through several refactoring and now works completely different from the "old" version. So as for v. 1.0, FlowReactor has not been used in any production yet.

FlowReactor has been developed with simplicity in mind, I for myself don't like the overly complicated visual scripting tools like Bolt - having 20 nodes for something I could write with three lines of code makes things in my eyes more complex than it should. That's why being able to easily create your own nodes with FlowReactor is a key feature, to make sure a single node can do more than just one command.

Workflow:
Graphs are not bound to any scene, the logic runs inside a scriptable object. Thinking about it, you might be right of having the unique instance setting to be true as default.
Regarding variables connection: FlowReactor follows more the Playmaker route also because of simplicity and to reduce the node mess in graphs. I simply like the workflow of having several independent Blackboards and being able to connect them with my node variables by a list selection and not having my graph being messed up with variable nodes.
Blackboards are storing variables in dictionaries by a unique guid key, so it's safe to rename variables without loosing any reference.
It's true - and maybe a downside of this approach - that blackboards could get a bit messy with temporary variables, but you can have multiple Blackboards assigned to a graph, therefore you could also use a blackboard dedicated to temporary variables only.
Workflows always have pros and cons, but it's important to know them. 😉

this is not my first asset i'm selling at the Asset-Store and I've had only good experience regarding refunds. If you don't like it, simply tell me the reason and I request a refund. It will take up to 10 days until the money gets transferred back by Unity.

I hope I could shed some light, let me know if you have any more questions.


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Arron Washington
(@thunderboots)
New Member
Joined: 2 years ago
Posts: 4
20/06/2020 6:04 pm  

Thanks for the taking the time to give so much feedback. I've just purchased FlowReactor to use in my next prototype; I'll let you know how it goes either way. At the very least, its a very beautiful looking asset!


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doorfortyfour
(@doorfortyfour)
Member Admin
Joined: 2 years ago
Posts: 13
20/06/2020 7:42 pm  

@thunderboots
Thank you for purchasing FlowReactor!


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