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GameMaker for Mac App Review

The simplest games are often the best and, while modern gaming is complex and sophisticated to swallow up hours of our time, it is the simple games that you can jump into and out of at pretty much any time that offer the most replay value. A quick look at the App Store, on sites such as Newgrounds or on Xbox Live Arcade will show just how huge indie games can be and some of today’s biggest iOS games did indeed start out as independent projects. Of course, independent games are nothing new and they have been around ever since home computers became available. Worms began its life as a competition entry created in the bedroom of its developer before turning into a huge franchise and it was a much more complicated process back then. Now with all kinds of software available for this very purpose, anyone can design their own games and distribute them. GameMaker is available now for $19.99.

If you are interested in making your own videogames then GameMaker is an excellent way to get started as it offers all the tools you need to make a mini masterpiece. All you need is an imagination and patience but it is certainly worth the money considering $20 cannot buy that many games. It can however create many.

One of the best things about GameMaker is just how user-friendly it is as anyone can pick it up and get to work. A full set of tools is at your disposal and no coding is required, which certainly simplifies and speeds up the process considerably. However the application does have its own built-in programming language which you can work with if you are feeling ambitious. If you do opt for the latter then it will give you much more control over the creation process, but it will also require more time and effort too. it is nice to have the option though.

GameMaker is an Object Oriented tool and all the components are neatly laid out for you in different categories, including Sprites, Objects, Scripts and Rooms. Sprites and Objects provide visual aspects for your games, while Scripts are for controlling the behaviour of these elements. For example, you may want an enemy to move in a certain pattern so you can designate a path for it to follow. This is also how you assign the various controls. Rooms on the other hand represent the area in which the game takes place, although it doesn’t actually have to be a room. The creation of the game begins with room, which you can then populate with sprites and objects, before programming it all with the scripts.

With the basic game finished you can then add all kinds of effects to make it more visually interesting. GameMaker is a relatively simple game creation tool but it will still require some getting used to so you will need to play around with the controls and get the hang of them before you launch straight into creating your masterpiece. Fortunately the help menu does contain tutorials to help you on your way and you can always download games created by other users and take a look behind the scenes. Ultimately it is a very satisfying application and very rewarding if you put the time in. it is also excellent value and worth purchasing if you have any interest in designing games.

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