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5. June 2019


YoYoGames have just released the beta version of the 2.2.3 release.  In addition to the usual slate of bug fixes and improvements, the marquee feature of this release is TvOS support, which is part of the mobile plan and enables you to target and support iOS based set-top boxes.  They have released three documents in support of TvOS with GameMaker.

Further details from the GMS blog:

  • Desktop targets can now disable the file sandbox from the Game Options for each platform (Windows, macOS and Ubuntu). This permits you to save and load files from anywhere on the target system (within the limits of the OS and any antivirus or other file-permission restrictions on the local machine).

  • The function surface_depth_disable() has been expanded to include all target platforms. This switches off the depth buffer for surfaces, which will reduce the memory overhead. For 2D games, especially on mobile, this is very useful - although for 3D you'll probably want to leave it enabled. For more information see the manual.

  • You can now create Local Asset Packages from resources in your projects. This means that you no longer need to go through the Marketplace to create YYMP files, enabling you to create your own local asset packages of scripts, objects, etc.... You can access this new feature from the Tools menu in the IDE, and the full details can be found in the manual inside the 2.2.3 IDE.

  • New constants have been added to GML for NaN and infinity, as well as new functions to check these values, is_NaN() and is_infinity().

  • Drag and Drop™ users can now add comments to their action scripts. This option is available from the Right Mouse Button menu in the active workspace.

  • The resource tree has new options for sprites and sounds to quickly add one or more resources to a texture page or an audio group - accessed through the Right Mouse Button menu.

  • A new option in General Preferences > Compiling to disable subst drives. When disabled, GameMaker Studio 2 will not create any virtual drives when compiling most platforms.

  • Strings now accept 4 byte wide Unicode characters, allowing you to decode and encode Unicode characters in the upper bounds of the standard (including, but not limited to, emoji). This may adversely affect some users who have been using the \u escape character (see the manual for more information).

  • New error reporting mechanism for submitting crash details to YoYoGames.

You can learn more about future GameMaker Studio releases in the development roadmap available here.  Details on accessing the beta channel of releases is available here.

GameDev News


4. June 2019


The Xenko open source game engine ( previously covered here, here and in tutorial form when it was still called Paradox here ) just released a complete game demo called Starbreach.  The demo was demonstrated at GDC 2017 and was recently updated to the current version of Xenko and has been released with full source and assets.

Details of the Starbreach demo from the Xenko blog:

Hi everyone, Silicon Studio agreed to release the Starbreach demo from GDC 2017, along with all associated assets as open source (see license), for the Xenko community to use. Code in the project is released under an MIT license, the assets are released under a attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International (CC BY-NC 4.0) license.

Starbreach was originally developed as the Xenko GDC demo for 2016 by Silicon Studio with art support from N-iX production studios. Virgile Bello (xen), Xenko’s lead developer has spent a chunk of time updating the demo and assets to work with the latest release of the Xenko.

You can find the demo and assets here: https://github.com/xenko3d/Starbreach

Check out the demo in action and learn how to get started in the video below.


GameDev News


30. May 2019


GDevelop, the open source beginner friendly 2D game engine, just released beta 70.  We recently mentioned GDevelop in our Codeless Game Engines article and have previously covered it in depth in this video.


There are no formal release notes, just this tweet:

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The star feature of this release is certainly the ability to create custom behaviors using the build in event system, in addition to the existing JavaScript method.  Details on creating custom behaviors is available here.  GDevelop is available for Mac, Windows and Linux and can be downloaded here.

GameDev News


28. May 2019

No-code or codeless systems are becoming more and more common among game engines and they offer a few benefits. Using a visual programming language enables non-programmers to interact with the code in a more tactile way, while the code itself tends to be a bit more self documenting then most scripting or programming languages. Make no mistake, you are still programming, you just aren’t typing in lines of code in a text editor, instead you script logic by defining events and properties or by connecting nodes together in a graph.

If you are interested in game engines with traditional scripting options, be sure to check out our guides to C/C++, C#, Haxe, Lua, JavaScript and Python game engines.

In this article we are going to look at the majority of codeless options among modern game engines, both 2D and 3D.

3D Game Engines

Armory 3D

Built on top of the Blender open source 3D application, this game engine has a node based option for game development, in addition to a Haxe based API.  Learn more here.

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BuildBox

BuildBox is a commercial game engine sold on a subscription basis that uses an entirely visual based node programming system.  Aimed at making games without requiring any programming knowledge.

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CryEngine

CryEngine is a AAA calibre game engine with a visual programming language named Schematyc.  It is designed to enable programmers to expose portions of their game logic to designers.  Writing a full game in Schematyc is not really the purpose.

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CopperCube 6

CopperCube 6 recently received a free version.  It is designed to work by attaching and configuring actions and behaviors to game objects.  You can expend the functionality in JavaScript, but creating a game entirely without coding is quite possible.

Learn more here.

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Godot

The Godot game engine has a Visual Scripting Language, with much of the same functionality of GDScript.  You can mix and match between the two scripting styles in the same game.  Honestly though, it’s not really that useful yet.

Learn more here.


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Unity

Unity doesn’t actually support Visual Scripting, although a Visual Scripting language is in the works for a 2019 release.  In the meanwhile there are several addons adding a Visual programming language such as Bolt.


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Unreal Engine

Unreal has perhaps the most robust visual programming language in the form of Blueprint, that can be used for everything C++ can, beyond changing the engine code itself.  It is also perhaps the most complicated visual programming language on this list.

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2D Game Engines

Clickteam Fusion 2.5

Perhaps most famous for making the 5 Nights series of games, this game engine use a tree/spreadsheet hybrid approach.

Learn more here.

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Construct 3

Construct 3 is a commercial, subscription based game engine that runs entirely in the browser.  Uses an event sheet programming model very similar to GDevelop and ClickTeam Fusion.

Learn more here.

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Stencyl

Stencyl is a game engine using a lego style brick approach to programming.  There is a free version available and the visual programming language ultimately generates Haxe code, which you can also code with.

Learn more here.

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Scratch

Scratch is an MIT project aimed at teach programming concepts to kids.  It, like Stencyl, uses a lego brick style programming interface.

Learn more here.

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GDevelop

GDevelop is a free and open source game engine that uses a programming model based on behaviors and events.

Learn more here.

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GameMaker Studio 2

YoYoGame’s GMS2 has been around for decades and is a complete game editing environment with two programming options.  A visual drag and drop programming system, and their own GM scripting language.

Learn more here.

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GameSalad

GameSalad is focused at students and non-programmers and is programmed using a behavior based logic system.  I have virtually no experience with this game engine.

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Pixel Game Maker MV

Pixel GameMaker MV is a complete commercial game making package from the same publisher as RPGMaker.  It uses a visual programming system and property based programming model.  It’s also pretty awful, IMHO.

Learn more here.


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Design Programming


22. May 2019


BuildBox is a cross platform 2D (and soon 3D) game engine heavily targeted toward the “no programming easy to use” segment.  With the 3.0 release coming Thursday, May 22 2019, there are also price changes coming to the game engine.  Currently the pricing is as follows:

Monthly Pricing:

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Annual Pricing:

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According to the BuildBox blog, the new pricing is changing as follows:

The first announcement is that soon we’ll be rolling out new pricing options. We’re ditching the monthly subscription plans and switching over to just annual plans.

Our goal and vision for Buildbox is to create a suite of game development tools that makes the entire process of making games and getting started super simple. These new price changes are simplified to be the most economical plans we’ve ever had! 

New Simplified And Most Economical Plans Ever
  • Plus Plan – $99 (per year)
  • Indie Plan – $199 (per year)
  • Pro Plan – $299 (per year)

If you already have a monthly subscription plan and love it, don’t worry, you’re good. However, the option to sign up for any of our monthly subscription plans or switch over to new monthly subscription will end on May 23. So, if you’ve been thinking about it now is the time.

We will honor the current monthly prices to anyone who signs up before that date. You can contact our awesome support team at [email protected] with any questions or for assistance in changing your plan.

Each plan includes all the core features of Buildbox like the menu editor, scene editor, actions, effects, logic, monetization, and creator with all gameplay possibilities.  The only difference between plans is the total amount of worlds, scenes, and export options you can have in your game. You can view current plans right here.

Learn more about the engine and pricing change in the video below.

GameDev News


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