Note: Source code (RemoteImage) available on Github

Yesterday, I explained how to use the NSURLConnection API to load a remote JSON file. Today I will show you how to use the same API to load a remote image. In fact, the NSURLConnection, similar to URLStream (in AS3) can load pretty much anything, basically it will download raw bytes, once loaded, you are free to do whatever you want with them. Serialize them to JSON, or pass them to a UIImage object, and there you go, you have your image ready to be displayed.

I commented each line which should be pretty straightforward:

import SpriteKit

class GameScene: SKScene {
    // our properties
    var bytes: NSMutableData?
    var totalBytes: Float64?
    let label: SKLabelNode = SKLabelNode(fontNamed: "Verdana")
    override func didMoveToView(view: SKView) {
        // we create our text label for the preloading infos
        label.position = CGPoint (x: 520, y: 380)
        addChild (label)
        // this is our remote end point (similar to URLRequest in AS3)
        let request = NSURLRequest(URL: NSURL(string: ""))
        // this is what creates the connection and dispatches the varios events to track progression, etc.
        let loader = NSURLConnection(request: request, delegate: self, startImmediately: true)
    func connection(connection: NSURLConnection!, didReceiveResponse response: NSURLResponse!) {
        // we initialize our buffer
        self.bytes = NSMutableData()
        // we grab the total bytes expected to load
        totalBytes = Float64(response.expectedContentLength)
    func connection(connection: NSURLConnection!, didReceiveData conData: NSData!) {
        // we append the bytes as they come in

        // we calculate our ratio
        // we divide the loaded bytes with the total bytes to get the ratio, we mulitply by 100
        // note that we floor the value
        var ratio = floor((Float64(self.bytes!.length) / totalBytes!) * 100)
        // we cast to Int to remove the decimal and concatenate with %
        self.label.text = String (Int(ratio)) + " %"
    func connectionDidFinishLoading(connection: NSURLConnection!) {
        // we create a UIImage out of the completed bytes we loaded
        let imageBytes = UIImage(data: self.bytes)
        // we create a texture
        let texture = SKTexture(image: imageBytes)
        // then a sprite
        let sprite = SKSpriteNode(texture: texture)
        // we calculate the ratio so that our image can fit in the canvas size and be scaled appropriately
        var scalingRatio = min (self.view.bounds.width/sprite.size.width, self.view.bounds.height/sprite.size.height)
        // we apply the scaling
        sprite.xScale = scalingRatio
        sprite.yScale = scalingRatio
        // we position our image
        sprite.position = CGPoint (x: 510, y: 380)
        // we remove the percentage label
        // we add our final image to the display list
    override func update(currentTime: CFTimeInterval) {
        /* Called before each frame is rendered */

During preload, this gives us the following:


Once loading is complete, our image is displayed:

Loaded image

I hope this code might be helpful to you guys!