Engineer Released

January 15, 2009

engineerss2

Engineer is a tower defense game with a bit of Robotron thrown in. Instead of killing a ton of zombies by hand, you get to build turrets to kill them, and walls to redirect them. Check it out here.

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I have recently discovered Mo’Minis Studio, a piece of software designed to bring mobile game creation to the masses. Their website promises that “Mo’Minis Studio allows fast creation of quality mobile games. It is designed to serve advanced as well as non-skilled developers and does not require any programming knowledge.” I am still skeptical as to how painless the entire process is going to be, though.

The main thing that worries me about Mo’Minis is the distribution model. You do not get to compile your own games and distribute them yourself. Instead you submit your games to the Mo’Minis developers, and they test/compile it for you. They also use ties that they have with an Israeli based mobile phone company. Mo’Minis Studio is said to be able to develop games for dozens of cell phone models, and if this is so, then it may just be easier to have someone else optimize and test it for you, so the limited distribution model may prove to work out. I have submitted my first game, and am looking forward to seeing exactly how this process goes.

My game is a lame George W. Bush shoe throwing game. I have ripped on these in the past, but it was a simple concept that I could throw together to test the waters.

bushshoe

A rapid way of developing mobile games really needs to exist, and I am excited to hear back from Mo’Minis. As far as I’m concerned, the software is easy enough to use, and is very polished. We’ll see if Mo’Minis can revolutionize game creation in the mobile world like programs like Game Maker have done for the PC market.

Game Maker Ruins My Life

December 15, 2008

Game Maker and I have a very love/hate relationship. I love it because it lets me create in a few hours what would normally takes days or weeks to do. I hate it because everything about GM is just so damn inconsistent. Game Maker is the English language of programming languages. It isn’t designed well at all, but it somehow works and works well.

Right now I haven’t been able to work on as much stuff due to the fact that any GM games crash on startup on my laptop, which is what I spend 80% of my time on. Fortunately, Game Maker 5.3A games are running fine, so it does present an interesting challenge of using a tool that I have largely forgotten about. Version 5.3A is a far step back from the current version, and looking at some of the features that didn’t exist in the earlier version made me realize how spoiled I am now.

My Game Maker problems are also cross-platform. I have been toying around with the new GM Mac Beta, and I really don’t have anything good to say about it. The sprite editor is a joke, and there is about a 50% chance that your game just won’t load. YoYo Games has slated the open beta for April, and they’ve got a lot of catching up to do.

Am I disappointed by GM sometimes? Yes, but I have been using it for so long now that I would have to invest a large amount of time into changing my dev environment to reach the level of proficiency I have with GM now. I don’t quite think it’s worth it. Maybe someday another technology will come along and sweep me off my feet, but until then, I’m sticking with Game Maker.