Game Develop

Game Develop
by Compil Games
Supported OS: Windows • Ubuntu

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  •  Update 5/23/2013

There are some new tricks with the latest version of Game Develop starting with the website. Some videos and tutorials are available which are displayed when you download the program. Some problems remain as the executable doesn’t install and run on my machine. This is a known bug with a work around if you dig enough on their site you can find it.  This remains one of the hopefuls for the free realm as many of the others have already gone to the paid market. This is fine, but not everyone can afford them, but everyone deserves a chance to make a game.

  • Update 6/5/2012

Final Verdict:
This game design software seems unpolished (at least using the english version) with the text merging together and features hidden within features.  Selecting some features have no names or explanations, and there are no tutorials for english support, with a rare few on the french page.  There is no “quick play” button to create a temporary compiled version to test your project for mistakes.  You must go through the compile “Wizard” every time.  The events tab is located at the bottom of the scene window, so be aware of that.  After loading an example, I simply could not follow what it did.  It was a “Particles and Lighting” tutorial.  When opening the events tab (once I found it) It didn’t have anything to do with particles.  Finding what resources/extensions apply to an object requires you to right click the object and select from several different options.  To my knowledge there isn’t a clear easy way of seeing what is effecting what.  When I recently ran Game Develop, it was kind enough to tell me there was an update available, but the button to “Auto Update” was grayed out.  I had to go to their website to download the new version (which had the same file name as the previous version “gd.exe”) and install it over the existing installation which included the “First Run Setup” prompts to appear again.

If anyone had (or has) the time to actually learn how to use Game Develop with it’s lack of instructions and tutorials (the wiki documentation is very brief and abrupt) write a review and send it to me, otherwise this will be my last say on Game Develop.  While sounding promising and being very hopeful for the holy grail, I’m going to have to say this one is a pass.  It shows much promise and if the author can actually make documentation instead of relying on the community to create it (It’s like asking a person who has never driven a particular car who isn’t a mechanic to write the owner’s manual for that car.) then it would be worth revisiting.  Until then, most of us do not have the time to experiment with a software creation tool with no documentation that may or may not suit our needs, or that may be unstable when creating bigger projects.

  • 5/23/2012

Compil Games is evidently based in France, and as such, the majority of the community is active on the french section of their forum.  A good way around this is to use the Google Chrome web browser and allow it to translate the pages for you.  Just mind which section of the forum your posting to if you are posting in English.  Needless to say they do support the english language in most aspects, including a “mirrored” duplication on their forum for english at the bottom under the french.

Unlike most game development solutions, Game Develop boasts that it doesn’t use an interpreter for the games at run time, but instead compiles them like in the C++ programming language, allowing the games to use less resources at run time on the end user’s computer.  There are no restrictions imposed by Compil Games on selling games you’ve made on Game Develop, which is rare for a free system like this one.  Most game development packages (that are free) usually require a splash screen, watermark, are prevent you from selling your games without purchasing a license or the program itself.

Expect more information on this page after I’ve had a chance to run through the tutorial and had a chance to gain some experience using this solution.  Here’s hoping it leaves a good impression!

I can’t get this sour taste out of my mouth because clicking on the tutorial link crashes the Game Develop. *~*  On top of that, they want you to send an error report by entering into a comment box and clicking on [Create Report].  This in itself isn’t a problem, but Game Develop created a new “user group” and locked down permissions within it’s home directory, which it was trying to create the report in!

To solve this you must right click on the directory and change the permissions on your user group to “allow”.  Now the report can be emailed to the developers… so sour.

I wonder if Game Develop is going to be worth this few set backs or if more problems are waiting around the corner?  Well there is a “Tutorial” folder within the main directory.  But before I try that, let’s see if the change in permissions will allow me to run the tutorial through the program now.  (Note: Upon the crash, my internet connection slowed to 1.1k and I have a broadband connection at that.)

Wish me luck.

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2 responses to “Game Develop

  1. Hi,
    I’m the author of Game Develop. May be you could give Game Develop another try: New versions have been released since your review. I know that the interface of GD is sometimes not flexible enough, that’s why I’m working on it. For example, the latest version has now a property grid to edit the properties of the objects put on the scene ( instead of relying on another dialog as in the previous versions ) making it easier to create a scene. I plan to extend this kind of interface so as to allow to edit and view properties of objects ( as well as their automatisms, variables… ) or groups of objects displayed in the object editor.
    Moreover, there is now a video tutorial here: http://wiki.compilgames.net/doku.php/en/game_develop/tutorials/beginnertutorial
    The documentation is now available online on the wiki: http://wiki.compilgames.net/doku.php/en/game_develop/documentation
    And do not forget there are tons of examples. And the latest version is also showing you some templates of games when you want to create a new project 🙂

    Game Develop is certainly not perfect, but I strongly believe it can be used effectively to create nice games. 🙂
    Let me know if you have other remarks or suggestions you didn’t write in your article 🙂

    • I’ve been meaning to respond for quite sometime since I discovered your post in my blog buried in my email. Life has been keeping me busy (Just Married) and I forgot on a few occasions. But I will download and re-install Game Develop and we’ll see what changes have been made.

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