Have you ever dreamed of making your own video game? Here are five tools to help you get started with this goal of making the process as easy as possible – no programming required.
This article is probably suitable for people with a background in computer science, or just hobbyists. If you want to learn how to make games, but don’t want to dive into programming first, here are some basic tools to get started. Master these and you can bring the games back to the major platforms, and ultimately get to a place where you can mentally attack the most complex development tools. Let’s start.
5 Sites for Anyone Interested in Learning to Play Games
Flappy Code: Programming Tutorial for Beginners
Want to play a game, but don’t know where to start? Start here.
Flappy Bird is a compelling story of an incredibly simple game, made in Vietnam, which has grown into a worldwide phenomenon.
Flappy Code from Code.org is a perfect tutorial for anyone interested in learning basic programming skills. As you can see above, it has a drag-and-drop interface that shows you, one step at a time, the working logic behind Flappy Bird.
If you have no idea where to start with programming, or if you want a site to learn, check out this site first. It has a good tutorial that takes advantage of a game just about everyone is familiar with.
Stencyl (Windows, Mac, Linux): create games without coding
Flappy Code is little more than a tutorial – Stencyl effectively lets you build an entire game, and ultimately launch it on all platforms. This is a complete development environment, intended for non-programmers.
It’s not going to be intuitive: It’s something you have to work on. Look at the games that others have been able to make and you will see that learning this system can lead to a great job, for those who want to take their time to learn.
The software is free to download, but if you want to publish your creation on desktop (Windows, Mac, Linux) or mobile devices (iOS, Android), you are going to have to pay for a license. My advice: see if you can manage to create something before worrying too much about the license.
Flow Creator (Web): Based on the Web App for creating games
Stencyl is not your only option for creating games without code: Flow Creator is another choice.
Here’s a quick demonstration of how it works:
It’s a free, web-based system that helps you out a bit in the process, and there’s a decent community there to help you out. Interestingly, unlike Stencyl, the free version limits the creation process – you can only do 5 levels, with a total of 50 items. Yet if you’re just looking to experiment, it’s worth a try. .
Twine : Create a Hypertext game
Both of the above systems are all about creating graphic games, but what if you’re more into creating interactive fiction? Twine could be a better tool for you.
This free program gives you an easy way to create a web version by choosing “your own adventure”.
In some ways, it’s really more of a text editor than it’s an IDE, making it a great tool for beginners for those looking to get into Interactive Fiction. The New York Times seemed impressed with this one:
Twine stands for something radical: the transformation of video games into something that is not only consumed by the masses, but also created by them. – Laura Hudson
Check out some of the games created by Twine, and start by creating your own. You could end up creating the next great classic web-based interactive fiction.
Flappy Creator: Instant Flappy Bird Parodies
We end today’s column as we started: with Flappy Bird. Flappy Creator isn’t a programming tutorial, however: it’s a quick way to create yet another unnecessary Flappy Bird parody by simply uploading your own art. Insert your dog, grandma, or anything stupid into this game, because you can.