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Video Game Making Programs for the Computer
By J. Duvauchelle
Source: Novak, Jeannie. "Game Development Essentials." 2nd ed. New York: Delmar Cengage Learning, 2007.
Video games are enjoyed by individuals of all ages and backgrounds. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor, the video game industry employs thousands of people and generates several billion dollars in annual revenue. The advent of the home computer allows anyone, including individuals without programming experience, to make video games at home. Several video game-making programs provide resources for both beginning and advanced designers to make polished, fun video games.
Game Maker by YoYo GamesGame Maker, developed by YoYo Games, is designed to allow individuals with no programming or game development experience to create video games on their computer. Using a drag-and-drop graphical interface, Game Maker users create elements of their game and reorient them within the Game Maker screen without needing to manually enter any actual programming codes. Adding backgrounds, a soundtrack and similar game media is likewise simple.
Cost: Free ($25 to upgrade to the Pro Edition)
DarkBASIC by The Game CreatorsLike YoYo Games' Game Maker, DarkBASIC is designed to allow inexperienced programmers create video games as well as other types of computer applications. However, DarkBASIC includes more advanced features for intermediate and advanced users who are familiar with programming and want to implement more complex coding. Individuals can create games by entering basic, modified code, or dragging and dropping pre-made game objects. Alternatively, advanced users can open up a coding window and enter full-fledged coding language. DarkBASIC is also the first video game creation software for the computer that lets users implement Microsoft's DirectX game manipulation engine.
Cost: $39.99 (free trial)
Games Factory by ClickteamThe Games Factory software specializes in the creation of arcade and computer games. Game objects such as characters can be dragged and dropped anywhere in a preset game field. Users can then specify what the object or character should do, as well as any action parameters (such as telling the character to walk away when approached by another character). Experienced game programmers can create their own custom objects and actions. The software uses Clickteam's proprietary Multimedia Fusion software engine to create the graphics, ensuring a seamless and smooth finished game.
Cost: $59 (free trial)