With all of the tools available in today’s market for developing video games, it’s easier than ever to make a video game.
That doesn’t mean that your game will be the next Super Meat Boy or Fez. A good game is just a good game. A successful game is a game that has fans, proper marketing, and is somehow monetized.
But, we all start somewhere. I thought it might be nice if I shared with you, my 5 favorite pieces of software for game development!
Here’s the list of my 5 favorite pieces of software:
- Construct 3
- Adobe CC
- Google Docs
You can create any 2D or 3D game with Unity. You can make it with ease, you can make it highly-optimized and beautiful, and you can deploy it with a click to more platforms than you have fingers and toes.
What’s more, you can use Unity’s integrated services to speed up your development process, optimize your game, connect with an audience, and achieve success.
I started using Unity a few years back. Now, it’s basically the only game engine I use.
Construct 3 is a powerful groundbreaking HTML5 game creator designed specifically for 2D games. It allows anyone to build games. No coding required! With a quick and easy to grasp Ribbon interface, you have clear access to a wide set of tools that allows anyone to jump into game creation with little to no prior game development knowledge. The Layout Editor provides a what-you-see-is-what-you-get visual interface to design your levels. Within minutes or hours, you can have a working prototype that you can share with friends to play.
I recently started using Construct 3. I’m still learning it, but it seems to be a nice easy way to put together ideas to see if they work. Of course, you can create final products with Construct 3, but I prefer to use Unity for my final product, mostly because if I decide to port it for another console, Unity makes it much easier to do.
Adobe CC is an entire suite of graphics software, including Photoshop, Illustrator, Character Animator, Flash and so much more. It does cost about $50 a month to own it, but it’s totally worth it if you can afford it. They are always updating their suite and you can create any type of graphic you need.
From marketing to web design, and in-game assets with Photoshop and Illustrator and even animating your characters with After Effects and Character Animator. It’s a great software suite to own.
Spine was a life-saving piece of software during my second Global Game Jam. I wanted to make a specific type of animation using joints in 2D, but I didn’t have any software that could do that at the time. So Jarryd Huntley (Cleveland Game Developers leader and my friend) told me about the software. I did have to pay for it in order to use it, but they have a basic version that’s a one time cost of about $75.
Since that was all I needed for the weekend, I bought it. It ended up working really well, allowing me to animate the way I wanted to. It offered several ways to export the animations, from your typical sheet or a sequence or it will even allow you to export the skeleton so you can import it into Unity…. although I have not tried that one yet.
Spine also has a more expensive version or upgrade if you bought the less expensive one, and it features a few cool techniques that I wouldn’t mind having.. but finding the extra money to get the upgrade at my current financial state (or lack there of.. lol).. the upgrade will have to wait. But if you can afford it, I would totally suggest it. It’s super great and easy to learn!
Google Docs is great. They are free and they go with you everywhere, on any device, as long as you are signed in to your Google account. The only that’s required from you is a Google account. I personally use my Google Drive space to hold my docs, and I upgraded to have more space for a couple bucks a month.
So, I can write my Game docs on my phone, my laptop, my desktop, or whatever other devices I am logged in to. I also use Google docs to create spreadsheets for stats and finances, and I use the Slides for presentations I need to give and many other things. You can also share your docs with team members and it keeps track of who updated what and when. It’s a very nice tool to use. The most comparable software suite is Microsoft Office, except that Google Docs costs you nothing. Use it.
No matter what software you use to make your game, remember that you still need to create or buy your game assets and come up with the actual game concept. Making a video game is a lot of work, sometimes with very little financial reward, but you’ll know you did it. Be proud of what you created and work towards creating an even better game every time.
What’s your favorite software? Tell us in the comments!