I just came – rather, rediscovered, Engine001. “MAKE GAMES : NO CODING” , it says on big letters on the front page.
That puts the total of satisfactory “Make games; no coding” tools I’ve personally used to half a dozen: Game Maker, Scirra Construct, RPG Maker, StencylWorks, Engine001 – onward, fellow developers. And I, by my own admission, am a fairly weak user. Each day, as I perceive, these tools get better and more and more enthusiasts realize their dreams of making games. Each day, as the AAA boundaries are pushed forwards by the likes of John Carmack – this “indie” technology keeps up, lowering the barriers into GameDev even further.
Are we facing a major shift here? There was a time when, to make a game, you had to have access to expensive development kits and $1000 worth of proprietary software, or, failing that, a hardcore knowledge of C++ and spriting skills to match. Today, just about anybody can visit a website, download a software package and start building. Fantastic toolsets are available, like those mentioned above. Music is available online, as are sprites. While nothing guarantees a good game, you can’t deny that these tools – often dismissed as “toys” by the industry – are rapidly bringing more and more fresh talent into the fold.
Where would indie RPGs, for example, be without the magic of Kan Gao and Amaranthia‘s Amanda Fitch? They’re developers who work mostly alone, putting out games that, even though they’re 2D, would take much bigger teams and budgets if not for RPG Maker. I myself would not be here for Game Maker. Construct is doing wonderful things with HTML5. There’s Game Editor for iOS. And looking at the testimonials for Engine001:
While there are enough playgrounds for coders, as an artist you need to master both skills when it comes to a one man game development team … unless you discover 001. It gives artists a complex tool which is easy to use. Scripting has never been more fun and flowgraphs help keeping the project organized.
I think good times are upon us – the game development world is moving rapidly towards a state where the big guns – AAA development studios – make incredible, realistic, epic masterpieces while, other the other side, anyone who can use a computer can start up small in their own way. Mircosoft‘s motto was a PC in every home; these tools are pushing towards a game developer in every home. Let’s hear it for progress, people. Interesting times, indeed.
- John Carmack gives Doom 3 source code to public (slashgear.com)
- The World’s Most Famous Game Maker And Mastermind Behind Zelda And Mario Just Stepped Down (businessinsider.com)
- Discover How A RPG Maker Obtain Will Make 3D Game Creation Fast And Straightforward! (pctechmojo.com)
- LiveCode launches Game Academy (tuaw.com)
- Educational Kids Video Game Design Class using Platinum Arts Sandbox Free 3D Game Maker (designgames11.wordpress.com)
- RPG Maker Review: Aurora Wing (zpte.wordpress.com)
- YoYo Games Announces the Release of its Latest Game “Ninjammin Beat-Jitsu” (prweb.com)
- GameSpark Launches Online Courses to Make Video Games (prweb.com)
- Microsoft teams up with IGF to promote indie game development (thenextweb.com)