The right language

In the process of creating one game a month this year, I mostly want to reach a state where I have a working method that suits me well.

Game Maker

For the 1st game, I decided to start with something easy and turned myself to Game Maker which seemed to me to be the right choice as it’s a hands-on product that bring immediate results.
I started using The free version of Game Maker Studio (GMS) to see how it goes.
I still faced somewhat of a learning curve because I have accurate gameplay mechanics in mind and the tool was difficult to handle that accuracy even though I started using Game Maker scripting Language (GML) right from the start.
I still completed a prototype of crate collecting game in space and figured out I was on the right track.

Free but limited

This is when I encountered the limit of the free version of GMS: you can only use 15 objects in total! While I can refactor my prototype to use less objects, I know that I will hit the wall again at some point. From there, I have 2 options: continue using Game Maker and pay for the full version or switch to something else.
While I am quite tempted to go on with the full version, I’m also attracted toward a solution which provide even more freedom.



Current decision is…

… To stop using GMS for now and switch to another tool! I know it’s not very wise if you consider that I’m supposed to deliver a game for January. But if I stick to the main purpose of the whole #1GAM operation, which is « move your ass and make those games », I think I can take some freedom regarding the timeline.
This brings us to the next step then…



Finding a good candidate

Since I successfully created a mini game using Flixel (AS3 based), I think I can safely come back to it. I’m still a bit annoyed to use a Flash only language and because of that, I dug a little bit more and decided to give a try to Haxe/NME as some bits of Flixel was ported to it. With this move to Haxe/NME, I can continue coding with a framework than I’m used to and I benefit from the power of cross-platform compilation! The icing on the cake is that I can still use FlashDevelop which is an IDE that I quite like. As a stretch goal, I’m also looking at FlashPunk which is quite similar to Flixel but with a bit more freedom involved (up to me to discover if that aspect is indeed true) and good news, there is a FlashPunk port for Haxe!

I could successfully install everything on Windows XP (running on OSX thanks to Parallel Desktop) and could compile to Flash and Windows without problem. Hopefully I’m all set to start writing good code and maybe a nice game?

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