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Engine recommendations?

A topic by jox created Mar 31, 2016 Views: 881 Replies: 23
Viewing posts 1 to 14

I'm going to try participating in this jam. I don't know much programming, so I'm going to use an engine that doesn't require much knowledge. Currently I'm trying out Fusion 2.5 free version.

Does anyone have recommendations for other engines that are suitable for making low-res games? I'm aware that you can get around it by making a larger 64x64 grid in any engine, just specifically wondering about actual low-res games…


GameMaker Studio is neat for making basically any kind of 2D game. Totally suitable for low-res stuff, too. It's easy to have the game run at 64x64 and then just scale the window up so you can actually see what's going on.

I personally code everything, but the engine does have a bunch of drag and drop stuff that requires no programming skills. Not totally sure how restrictive the drag and drop stuff is though. But even then, the programming language is really simple and suuuper laissez faire in terms of syntax, wouldn't be difficult to learn

There is a free version, I think the only restriction is a GameMaker splash screen when the game starts. Can't hurt to try it, I guess

You change the view size or room size in gms?


It's the view size you'll want to change. ( And remember to enable the view! I've caught myself out with that a few times *cough* )
You can then set the port on screen size to change the resulting window size and it'll scale for you.
Remember to click off the interpolate colours between pixels option in global game settings to keep those pixels nice and crisp!

Excellent info. Thanks.


Construct 2 is very easy to use. I've got a few examples .capx files here if you're interested.


Thank you, I'll have a look at both!


@jox here is a beginners guide to Orx if you are interested in looking into that engine:


Second RE: GameMaker Studio. It's super newcomer friendly. I started using it more seriously about 2 years ago, just fiddling with drag and drop. Now I do a mix of proper code and dnd (when I'm feeling lazy or just tinkering), and I find I can prototype things SUPER fast with it.

I'm using it for my entry. You can get the free version which has basically all the stuff you need, except export to fancier consoles/platforms.


If I can go off topic for a moment, I'm psyched your here. Your books have been my go-to guides when I started to pursue games journalism in addition to my development efforts last year. I've written a lot of stuff in a short time using your advice. You, sir, are a hero for what you do.


Oh hey, thanks Todd! Nice to see you're on Contently! That's a great freelance jam, once you can lock down steady work through their system (took me a while, but its still one of my steady gigs), it's pretty awesome.

Thanks for the kind words! Love to help folks when I can. It's great, too, to be doing more work on this side of the fence. Game dev has been a very rewarding experience, despite it's many challenges. Definitely having a blast learning and creating this stuff! I'm also a huge pixel art nerd, so this jam is SO super suited for the kind of stuff I love to do. Looking forward to seeing what everyone else is cooking up!


Thinking seriously about using Phaser. I've completed a Ludum Dare jam using it successfully and Unity seems like trouble/overkill.

But that's a lot more programming than Game Maker. I'm also a fan of Game Maker.


Phaser turned out less than ideal. The actual Phaser team did a 32x32 entry last time and by their own admission it was hacky and there's no better way to do it. Love Phaser, but it will be for another day.


Thank you everyone. I'm in Game Maker Studio now and following tutorials, it's seeming like a good program for my purposes.


I recommend using GameMaker: Studio, its easy to use with drag & drop feature and you can also add scripts(your own code) to add more flexibility to your game, and it also come with a great sprite editor :D

If anyone is looking for awesome Game Maker Studio video tutorials and resources, I highly recommend checking out Heartbeast's channel. He focuses more on the code side of things, but he's a wealth of knowledge:

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Use löve2d with maid64

Video demo:


I'm using GM:S.

But I'd highly recommend Love2D as well, especially if you're not into unwieldy IDEs like GM:S.

I'd say GM:s is faster if you're familiar with it, but Love2D I think is more fun. :P

And seeing as the GM community is down atm it may be easier to find help for Love2D.


I'll try out Löve2D after this jam! After browsing a lot of this stuff in the past few days, I think I should start learning Lua. It doesn't seem very difficult. (I've learnt a little Java and JS before but am not good at either, hence I've been wanting engines without the need for programming.)


Lua is relatively easy. Love2D is just a very nice engine that uses Lua, it has really intuitive functions for the basics such as drawing, audio and what not, and it's easy to run the things you make. Yes you have to program, but it's a fun way to go about it I think. :)


I don't mind programming as such, it's just that I'm not good at it. :-P I'm good with HTML/CSS and really enjoy coding stuff from scratch when it comes to websites, but functional programming I've never wrapped my head around. I saw that Lua is also used by PICO-8 (which looks adorable). But yes. It feels good to have motivation to try more programming!


If you want to make a 3D game, you could for example use Panda3D.

Code for scaling a 64x64 game can be found at

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GLBasic is a super language...all code no drag and drop...very easy to learn (free for non-commerical use) 80 euro for FULL licence