What software should you use to make a video game?
The answer depends on a couple of questions you have to ask yourself? What skill level do you have with the computer and programming and what are your goals for making video games? I answer these questions and help you find the right software for achieving what you want.
Video game design used to be the realm of crack shot programmers who could write programs, troubleshoot computers, write tools and even draw out the graphics needed. You had to be a writer, artist, and programmer all wrapped up in one. But today this is no longer true. There are plenty of programs that do most of the hard work for you and leave the fun part of actually designing a game to you. But every software tool is different and each one is suited to a particular type of game making. Here is a guide for understanding some of the major game design suites and choosing which one is right for you.
For Absolute Beginners to game design and for pre-teens or young adults –
You are the type of person that knows how to use a computer but you don’t know how to do any programming at all. You would like to make a few small video games without having to learn too much software stuff. You have lots of ideas for video games and you like the arcade style and side scrolling games. This kind of game would be a thrill for you to make for you and your friends to play.
My Recommendation: The Games Factory or The Games Factory 2 by Click team
For medium skill computer users, for high school age to adult
You have a bit of Savvy with the computer and have tried and used different kinds of programs. Maybe you have done some level design for a popular game. You would really like to make something three-dimensional like Quake and you have the thought that maybe you would like to make whole worlds and dungeons. You really want to make a game that you can walk around in.
My Recommendation: The Reality Factory
For high skill computer users and adults age 18 and over
You are considering a career in game design and want to set out a good base foundation for your career. You want skills that will transfer to the Real world but you are not yet sure if you want to invest the years it takes to master a high level programming language.
My recommendations: DarkBASIC 3D Games Creator
You are going to be a Video Game Maker – no doubts about it
My Recommendation: C++ and Direct X
Making video games is a wonderful pursuit that can fully tap your creative powers and whether you are doing it just for fun or for a career there are lots of tools available to help you reach your goals and make some great video games.
There are a few reasonably priced software packages that you can make games with. I recommend these:
Construct 2 - A Visual HTML 5 Game development tool
This is an interesting video game design program that enables you to make games without programming. They have a variety of offerings including a free beta version and online trial tools so you can tinker with it and give it a whirl right away.
Check it out here: Construct 2
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