prtksxna

Which engine to pick?

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Hey,

 

After making my first HTML5 game "Vertigo" - http://prtksxna.github.io/vertigo - I got a pretty good understanding of how games are made. I did not use any engine for this and the code base is pretty small. I want to make more games and I think it might make sense to use an engine for future games. I do have some limitations and requirements that I'll list below-

 

  • Needs to be free or have a free trial (unlike ImpactJS)
  • I want an engine and not a Game Maker like Construct
  • Should be able to deploy to mobile using PhoneGap
  • Should be able to deploy to desktop using Node Webkit
  • Should be in active development (it becomes really hard otherwise)
  • Should have basic sprite/layer/screen/collision support

I know the list is too specific, but is there an engine that satisfies all this and I can use?

 

--prtksxna

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Not familiar with iioengine, but as far as I know on the list almost everything but Construct 2, GameMaker, pixi.js/three.js and the paid ones have what you're asking for.

Any engine will work with Node Webkit and any engine that has decent mobile support will work with PhoneGap (though you might be better with something like CocoonJS since the WebView generally sucks for games).

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Two that I would recommend are Game Maker Studio and Cocos2d-x.

 

If you've got the money, I would highly recommend Game Maker Studio. If you take a look at http://cocos2d-x.org it's a free, open-source engine. The only reason I recommend Game Maker over this engine is it has more platform support and faster development (since it's commercial software).

 

Those are my two recommendations for 2D game development. They are both good, I used cocos2d-x for a pretty large project.

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The only reason I recommend Game Maker over this engine is it has more platform support and faster development (since it's commercial software).

It isn't faster platform to develop on not because it is commercial but because of different target audience based upon skill. If you use Game Maker then best of luck implementing advanced APIs and adapt according to changing market trends. Plus cocoonjs would support most mobile platforms in trend.

 

For desktop you can always wrap your code in browser toolkit of some cross platform library like wxWidgets. Then it would support even 64 bit linux and freebsd which Game Maker don't.

 

I would recommend give a fair try to Cocos2d-x and Phaser and for mobile platform use cocoonjs and for deploying your game to desktop platforms make a simple wxWidgets app and wrap your html5 game with wxwebview tool. It gives you many additional controls like you can encrypt your game code stored in files with AES then before playing the game decrypt it in memory and launch in wxwebview.

 

For desktop platforms you can use virtualbox to install multiple operating systems.

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For the last couple of days, I was working a lot with GM:S instead of Monkey. Wanted to see how fast the development is compared to my favorite toolset (Monkey + fantomEngine + plus various helper tools) is. Actually, I can get things done in Monkey faster. I still find myself coding a lot in GM:S. What is nice in GM:S is the visual room editor but I could use Tiled for this. I am still unsure but there is a tendency to stay with Monkey. There I can easily target Flash (still not dead) with the same code base and of course, all the other platforms too.

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For the last couple of days, I was working a lot with GM:S instead of Monkey. Wanted to see how fast the development is compared to my favorite toolset (Monkey + fantomEngine + plus various helper tools) is. Actually, I can get things done in Monkey faster. I still find myself coding a lot in GM:S. What is nice in GM:S is the visual room editor but I could use Tiled for this. I am still unsure but there is a tendency to stay with Monkey. There I can easily target Flash (still not dead) with the same code base and of course, all the other platforms too.

HTML5 is rising fast but yes, Flash isn't dead. If you can great very good games Flash can pay more money. If you think GM:S works for you, great B)

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The big problem of GM:S is that it's very buggy.

Each new GM:S version may add a variety of problems with your previously trouble-free projects.

http://gamepolitics.com/2012/11/28/game-maker-drm-permanently-vandalizing-paying-users-games

 

Game Maker after version 7 is poorly implemented. Even then it was actively decompiled heavily. YoYo have become very arrogant and rude company. I like business model of scirra.

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My new game has already lost 1500$ in sales. Thanks to wonderful GMS. Each update fixes one thing and breaks 5 more things. There has been bugs which has been posted for months and still not fixed. One of their ways to fix a buggy function was to completely remove that function. Also i had bought their master edition and my license doesnt even work now. I had emailed support a week ago and still no reply.

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My new game has already lost 1500$ in sales. Thanks to wonderful GMS. Each update fixes one thing and breaks 5 more things. There has been bugs which has been posted for months and still not fixed. One of their ways to fix a buggy function was to completely remove that function. Also i had bought their master edition and my license doesnt even work now. I had emailed support a week ago and still no reply.

You bought there master edition and still no reply? How long it have been? With price tag of $700 it is in price range of professional tool which GET professional support.

As I said on one of my old post, there is no shortcut. Good programmers need to make there own tools and learn to use them well. Depending upon a 3rd party high level proprietary tool for production is simply not best idea if company is as arrogant and rude as YoYo.

 

I learn a decent game framework like phaser and then make a easy to use high level language. It isn't difficult at all... You can traget more and more platforms as output as you learn them. Like if you want to port your x number of games to flash you don't have to rewrite them all or have to depend upon YoYo. It have a longer learning curve but a way to survive for longer and earn more than what you can otherwise.

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Being a GM:S user i must admit the experience is very good but as previous post's had pointed out, Some things do cause more problems. But there is always the community and the users are very helpful. If you cannot fix a bug or glitch etc then you may as well try a different route and plan it out again. 

 

Otherwise besides that GMS is actually a very good Game Maker. Stable, fast and effective with added efficiency for creating games. It's got many advantages so check it out if you will.

 

The standard addition is now free for a limited time (i know its an HTML5 forum but this may help)

 

Just thought i may as well as my 2 cents to this old topic in case any other users have wondered and searched for the same thing :P

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Hey prtksxna,

 

do you know WiMi5?
It´s a HTML5 platform for creating casual games (you can also publish and monetize your games in the same site). It´s free, based on a revenue share business model, the developer get 70%.
As any HTML5 game you can wrap your project with PhoneGap, CocoonJS, CrossWalk, etc.
All the platform is built with HTML5 technologies, CSS3 and Javascript. 

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Greetings.. I am not any new in web development itself but newbie in web game development and I was wondering which of the engines or frameworks I should use.. I kinda like Phaser but it might be overkill in this case..

I understand that its more about which one is the best for particular game or dev.. so here is the situation..

I plan mostly simple 2D top view (or isometric) tile rpg (like) multiplayer game with "realistic" world logic (collecting, trading, socializing  with other players, ..) and several ways how to make money, keep character healthy and so on.. So game core would mostly be about math..

While its fairly easy to write generators for world, grid, create pathfinding algorithms, get user inputs, etc etc.., I dont feel like reinventing the wheel with such a small project and therefore for graphic and sound stuff I would want to use engine..

so now the question.. would Phaser be ok for such kind of stuff? or would be better if I used something more lightweight like Pixi or EaselJs?

I would really appreciate your opinions based on your past experience about this.. I dont need final answer but more like discussion so I can decide.. I read articles and checked sites like http://html5gameengine.com/ but it is still difficult to decide without having a lot of time and trying all of those frameworks..

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On 11/02/2017 at 6:33 PM, hicotech said:

would Phaser be ok for such kind of stuff? or would be better if I used something more lightweight like Pixi

I'm not sure where EaselJS sits but Phaser and Pixi are fundamentally different things (indeed, Phaser includes Pixi!). Pixi is a library, it does one thing well, it renders stuff really fast (although it muddies this a little by adding event handlers but you could easily argue this is part of its remit as owner of the screen), Phaser (for me at least) is a framework, it is a collection of these smaller libraries and its job is to glue them together to let you, as dev, build stuff faster.

So part of your choice is how much work do you want to do? Phaser handles lots of stuff for you like state machines, input devices, audio, physics etc etc but is arguably less flexible, it offers a few physics choices (for example) but if none of them fit your needs it would require a little knowledge of how Phaser works to integrate a different system (its eminently possible though, and quite possibly still faster than writing everything from scratch yourself). I often prefer to wire which libraries I want (such as Pixi) based on the project, but everyone is different, I generally write games for fun, for professional products your timescales are tighter so the benefit of fuller-featured framework is marked.

For your top-down 2d game, which is presumably visually driven by a grid (tilemap) of some sort I'd think most popular frameworks support this stuff as a primary use-case, so given they can all do it, you're now picking a favourite, one that suits you.

First I always look at how well supported a project is, if the devs are active and the community also active thats a huge plus point, if devs are actively responding to community concerns then another big plus. I like to see a test suite for any project I use, this shows the devs know what they're doing, gives a good reference point for how to use the project and gives some assurance that any bugs/new features can be integrated faster. My next concern would be documentation, good docs are key, backed up by a strong community. Only then would I start looking at the api, is the project structured in a way you agree with? Do you call methods and create stuff in a way that feels natural and logical?

If you have very specific needs then you might want to check feature-set of a project first i.e. if you need rock-solid shader support and the library doesn't support it then maybe the lib isn't for you, but, maybe it would allow you to add support fairly easily and you could also contribute to that project.

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Thanks for the reply.. didnt know that about Pixi and Phaser

So just to make it short.. meanwhile I started playing with Phaser since it looks like it has quite a lot of support in community (examples, plugins, articles, ..) and I like system of preload(), create(), update() and render(). However I was a bit surprised with date of latest release which is more or less 6 months ago.. however in comparison to other frameworks/libraries it looks like this is normal state.. maybe I am just used to 1 month release schedule from other projects..

So... Creating grid and random world in Phaser was quite easy, even though I didnt really get the idea of using csv over array but I guess that is for "imported" already ready worlds.. I know there are also other possibilities though and I will play with it a bit more.. I am not sure how Pixi is handling things but as I stated before I am not going to reinvent the wheel so having framework for "monkey" stuff is good choice for me.. and at the end I can focus more on other aspects of game and not how to play audio and create tiles..

Thanks again for your help....and see you later

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There has been some chat about v3 or a separate project for Phaser, which has probably impacted more regular releases, before Aug it was released very frequently (with absolutely superb release notes!), there have been a large number of commits to master since August. Phaser is a mature project so a slower release cycle isn't harmful for it (barring bug fixes), the next release will be a biggy, but I think it might be a v3 or a v3 prep (of those 700+ commits to master, there are many many more inside the Lazer project, which I think may be consumed into Phaser as a v3).

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