Getting Started with SpriteKit
In iOS 7, Apple introduced SpriteKit, a framework for the high-performance rendering of 2D graphics. That sounds a bit like Core Graphics and Core Animation, so what’s new here? Well, unlike Core Graphics (which is focused on drawing graphics using a painter’s model) or Core Animation (which is focused on animating attributes of GUI elements), SpriteKit is focused on a different area entirely—video games—and it is Apple’s first foray into the graphical side of game programming in the iOS era. It was released for iOS 7 and OS X 10.9 (Mavericks) at the same time, and it provides the same API on both platforms, so that apps written for one can be easily ported to the other. Although Apple has never before supplied a framework quite like SpriteKit, it has clear similarities to various open source libraries such as Cocos2D. If you’ve used Cocos2D or something similar in the past, you’ll feel right at home.