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Absolute Beginners Intro To Video Game Development

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abstractcoder
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I found this today and thought I'd pass it along. If you have any interest in attempting video game development, Tom Francis, the creator of the game Gunpoint, is starting a series of game development videos for absolute beginners using Game Maker.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DN6dZWXUEzA

Lucia_Flores
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Hey, thanks.. This was what I

Hey, thanks.. This was what I was looking for, being relatively new to this field and all. Any other similar leads?

DifferentName
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Me too

I've been using GameMaker for 6 or 7 months now. I dabbled in programming before (mostly for flash games), but I'm not that knowledgeable in it overall, so GameMaker feels like a good place to start. I also recommend it for any non programmers or novice programmers interested in making a video game from their game designs.

However, there are a few annoying things where I feel like I'm at the mercy of GameMaker to add features. I'm happy with it overall as a start, but I will probably be looking into other game engines to graduate to something more versatile.

Soulfinger
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Adventure Game Studio

As a fan of the old point and click adventure games, like Monkey Island and Maniac Mansion, I've been intrigued by the Adventure Game Studio: http://www.adventuregamestudio.co.uk/

cynical81
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Greetings, Thanks for sharing

Greetings,

Thanks for sharing the link. I've not used Game Maker, but I've heard good things about it. There are also some other options that I've heard about, though I have limited first-hand experience with any of them:

http://www.chatmapper.com/
http://berserk-games.com/tabletop-simulator/

Of course, these are all DIY programs. If you want a really decent game, you'll want to get at least 1 real video game developer (if not a team) to do it the fancy way. I am a Producer in the video game industry and if you'd like, I can give you some general info about the subject of 'Video Game Development' based on personal experience.

I'm curious to hear about what experiences others have had with these programs though. In developing my board game, I'd love to be able to do it all myself to.

larienna
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I am currently working on a

I am currently working on a platform for making turn based Strategy database games and Board games. Just to make sure I don't re-invent the wheel, I was wondering if gamemaker could handle such kind of games?

From what I know, it works well for classic video games like side scroller, shooter, etc. But that is not what I am looking for.

let-off studios
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Fusion

I've been using Clickteam Fusion and its predecessors (MultiMedia Fusion, preceded by The Games Factory and Klik n' Play) for nearly 10 years now, and it's a great game-making SDK. Not just arcade games can be made, but also turn-based and strategy games can be built.

Multiplayer on the same machine (AKA "hot-seat") is available, Internet connectivity is possible for online games, and beyond the Windows OS, games can be exported to Android, iOS, HTML5, and Flash.

Though I'm obviously biased due to (positive) personal experience, I strongly recommend it as a place to start. The demo versions are available for no cost, and I think there's a free version on Steam.

www.clickteam.com

I've not used Game Maker or Unity. The former because I'm already familiar with a suitable 2D game authoring SDK, the latter because of price and the fact I'm not terribly interested in 3D games. However, if you want to build consumer-quality, mass-market computer games then a 3D engine like Unity may be the way to go.

www.unity3d.com

Hope this is useful info! :)

larienna
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I'll take a look at fusion. I

I'll take a look at fusion. I might be more using game maker and fusion to make arcade style games. I could remake a few classics. But still, I can always give it a try for strategy games.

Does Fusion has scripting, if yes in which language?

Can fusion use a database?

At least if those engine does not do what I want, I can at least get some inspiration for desiging my own engine.

let-off studios
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larienna wrote:Does Fusion

larienna wrote:
Does Fusion has scripting, if yes in which language?
From what I know, it uses Lua as a scripting language. I've not delved into it myself but there have been other users who have reported it as being a major advantage.

larienna wrote:
Can fusion use a database?
Yes, it can grab data from cells in an excel spreadsheet and its variants, from what I recall. It can export crucial data to INI files and proprietary file extensions to save game data from one session to the next. I've not tried anything as involved as that, but it's been pretty much the standard since day one to grab data from external files.

radioactivemouse
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let-off studios

let-off studios wrote:
larienna wrote:
Does Fusion has scripting, if yes in which language?
From what I know, it uses Lua as a scripting language. I've not delved into it myself but there have been other users who have reported it as being a major advantage.

larienna wrote:
Can fusion use a database?
Yes, it can grab data from cells in an excel spreadsheet and its variants, from what I recall. It can export crucial data to INI files and proprietary file extensions to save game data from one session to the next. I've not tried anything as involved as that, but it's been pretty much the standard since day one to grab data from external files.

I'm...not a fan of Fusion.

I taught it to children for years and I just couldn't get into it. Yes, it creates a great executable, but it bogs the executable with all this unused code that is slows the game. Plus, it's limiting. I think it caters more to a younger crowd than an older one.

I suppose some of these programs are great for some people, but if you're making a video game, I say use Unity or Unreal as they are professional quality and free with great community support. Plus there are tons of great tutorials in addition to the ones they provide with the program.

Why spend the time "practicing" with a program that's not industry standard when you can use that time on something more viable?

Anyways, that's just my thoughts.

larienna
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The problem with unity and

The problem with unity and unreal engine is that

- you need to be a professional to use it.
- It's very expensive
- It's mostly used for 3D games, very hard to make 2D games.
- It seems to be used only to build modern style of game only. If you want to do an old school game, I am not sure it could be easily done.

This why I intended to make my own engine for making turn based strategy game including board games since there does not seem to be any engine out there that does that.

----------------------------------------------------

I checked fusion and it has a relatively high price, but what is confusing is the difference between the products. They show many tools where some do the same thing but have different names.

Both game maker and Fusion seems to charge you extra for each platform you want to export to. So the cost could build up pretty high.

Of course, those engine should not be optimized for performance because they are not coded natively.

radioactivemouse
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larienna wrote:The problem

larienna wrote:
The problem with unity and unreal engine is that

- you need to be a professional to use it.
- It's very expensive
- It's mostly used for 3D games, very hard to make 2D games.
- It seems to be used only to build modern style of game only. If you want to do an old school game, I am not sure it could be easily done.

Completely untrue.

-Unity and Unreal are available to everyone. You used to have to buy Unreal Tournament to get Unreal, but they offer a standalone called UDK, which doesn't need a purchase of Unreal Tourney to use.

-Unity and Unreal are free. They both encourage game making and only require compensation if your game makes a certain dollar amount ($100,000 I believe), which gives a lot of breathing room.

-Unity and Unreal not only have tutorials dealing with 2d platformers, but even gone so far as to give you an option of a 2d template when you start a new file, While making 2d games used to be difficult on these platforms, it is not as much now.

-Old school as in sprite based games? While Fusion seems a right answer, it's not exactly "sprite based". In addition, you'll be paying up the a$$ for Fusion, Unity and Unreal...again are free.

-In addition, like I said, the community for both Unity and Unreal are far stronger than that of Fusion. You'll find more tutorials on Unreal and Unity because it is a professional grade engine that is available to everyone.

I believe the biggest hurdle is that it appears intimidating. It is. But it shouldn't stop people from making games on it.

Please do your research before responding, there is a lot more to Unity and Unreal than you think.

let-off studios
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Other Game Dev Resources

Here is a website with an extensive listing of game SDKs and asset-making software. Even if you're only making tabletop games, perhaps the art programs would be useful. Your mileage may vary.

http://freegameslist.weebly.com/game-creation-tools.html

I'm not really interested in debating which system is "better." I'm interested in making a game that's fun and/or interesting, even at least for a little bit. If that means I pick up and explore one tool at the expense of another, oh well.

The bottom line is that the playing field has leveled so much even within the last 10 years, that nearly anyone can make a serviceable game - for literally every audience - with some time and effort. I'd rather see people create and release something than simply sit back and marvel at their awesome tool and how much better it is than other offerings out there. Tools are what you make of - or make with - them.

radioactivemouse
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I disagree

let-off studios wrote:
Here is a website with an extensive listing of game SDKs and asset-making software. Even if you're only making tabletop games, perhaps the art programs would be useful. Your mileage may vary.

http://freegameslist.weebly.com/game-creation-tools.html

I'm not really interested in debating which system is "better." I'm interested in making a game that's fun and/or interesting, even at least for a little bit. If that means I pick up and explore one tool at the expense of another, oh well.

The bottom line is that the playing field has leveled so much even within the last 10 years, that nearly anyone can make a serviceable game - for literally every audience - with some time and effort. I'd rather see people create and release something than simply sit back and marvel at their awesome tool and how much better it is than other offerings out there. Tools are what you make of - or make with - them.

I believe that certain SDKs cater to certain audiences...most are at the hobbyist level and not meant to be professional in any way, shape or form. The problem is that people that use those SDK's think they can be professional, but they are sadly mistaken.

Part of it is just misinformation. One person here said that Unreal and Unity are expensive when, in fact, they just didn't know the right information. Some are duped into thinking they can make a profit off of a Fusion game, when it's just not true (with exceptions that are far too rare to be viable).

I don't like lumping every SDK into one group. Bottom line is that I believe there ARE SDK's that are better than others and people should research the field before making a decision.

let-off studios
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Feel free to disagree. As I

Feel free to disagree. As I mentioned earlier, I'm not interested in debating which ones are "better." I'm no real programmer, I know no programming language thoroughly, and I can still come up with something in two hours worth showing, thanks to these SDK's. Whether it's a good game is certainly up for debate, and (at least in my case) saying it's professional quality would be a dubious assertion at best. But that's not really my point.

The original post was asking for where to start, and my point is that there are plenty of points for entry. If one doesn't feel like learning a programming language, then there are still a multitude of opportunities to make a game, regardless of one's aptitude.

radioactivemouse
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let-off studios wrote:Feel

let-off studios wrote:
Feel free to disagree. As I mentioned earlier, I'm not interested in debating which ones are "better." I'm no real programmer, I know no programming language thoroughly, and I can still come up with something in two hours worth showing, thanks to these SDK's. Whether it's a good game is certainly up for debate, and (at least in my case) saying it's professional quality would be a dubious assertion at best. But that's not really my point.

The original post was asking for where to start, and my point is that there are plenty of points for entry. If one doesn't feel like learning a programming language, then there are still a multitude of opportunities to make a game, regardless of one's aptitude.

Your posts come off as very neutral and middle of the road, which doesn't indicate much experience (but I may be wrong) in the game-making field. I gave my opinions based on experience with working with many SDKs in the past. I've worked on AAA games and indie games. Because of that, I have very strong opinions on certain SDKs. There's nothing worse than seeing someone that wants to make a professional game waste their time on a package that no one uses or is not viable.

There's nothing really wrong with either, though. I wasn't asking for a debate, I just shared my experiences. I never really said there was "better" program, I said certain programs were meant for certain people and that people should research before they jump into a particular program.

larienna
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I understand that unity and

I understand that unity and unreal are awesome engine and that there could be a free version of the engine.

But again I am not a professional. I am more an amateur programmer. I don't think I could handle unreal/unity.

Second, I am alone, so I need something easy to use that requires little development or assets.

radioactivemouse
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larienna wrote:I understand

larienna wrote:
I understand that unity and unreal are awesome engine and that there could be a free version of the engine.

But again I am not a professional. I am more an amateur programmer. I don't think I could handle unreal/unity.

Second, I am alone, so I need something easy to use that requires little development or assets.

Your hangups are only created by your head. I will agree that some time ago it wasn't the easiest programs to use. But with the online communities growing and willing to help you out in addition to the tons of video tutorials out there you can do alone easily.

To be honest, I think you're just intimidated. I'm telling you it's not true.

Heck, when you open unreal it asks you what kind of game you want to make, 2d, 3d, side scroller, puzzle, etc. It literally creates a template for you and guides you through it.

It won't hurt to at least try it. Again, both programs have a free version. There is no "could be".

larienna
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Is Unity/unreal

Is Unity/unreal multi-platform?
Can it run on Desktop and mobile device?
What programming language is used?

MarkJindra
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Unity Info

This page on the unity site should have all of your answers.

https://unity3d.com/unity

I am currently looking into unity as well.

=M=

larienna
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I found this video while

I found this video while looking for a 2D tutorial:

https://unity3d.com/learn/tutorials/modules/beginner/live-training-archi...

I only watched the first 25 minutes (I am too tired to continue for now ), it seems to combine Editing tool with Scripting as Java code.

It looks interesting, it could be another solution to my problem. I can ask my friend who started using it how it went, because when we talked about it, he said to me that it was not made for 2D games.

The only thing left to see is if I can plug in an SQL database into the engine. I want it for example to have a database of card information to create card sprites on the fly.

As for the pricing, if I get it right, you only pay if you want more features and tool, but the basic package is royalty free? It might have changed since the last time I looked at it because I thought you had to pay a 1000$ license.

Is the unreal engined used in a similar way? Is it 2D games friendly too?

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