More ways to make games without programming

This is a follow-up to another recent post “how to make games without programming” with another round of possibilities.

Be sure to try before you buy and choose a package you are comfortable with, and remember my advice from the previous article about keeping your goals and expectations reasonable.

Stencyl

Stencyl is similar to Construct 2 and Game Maker (covered in the first article) and also allows you to create 2d games without coding, although this time you have the option of scripting as well.  The features offered are very similar to Construct 2 — I’d suggest giving demos of both products a try to see which you prefer — but pricing for Stencyl is based on a yearly subscription of $79/year for Flash and desktop games or $149/year for iOS (with Android support apparently in-the-works).  The engine behind Stencyl has recently been re-written to use HaXe NME, and apparently now offers the ability to generate native applications for all supported platforms.

GameSalad Creator

Again in the same vein as Construct 2 and Game Maker, GameSalad Creator allows you to create 2d games without coding.  A basic version is available free of charge, and the professional licence is a yearly subscription currently priced at $299/year.  Again, I do not have any personal experience with the product, so I suggest doing your own investigation before parting with any money.

MultiMedia Fusion 2

MultiMedia Fusion 2.0 is yet another 2d game creator with a drag & drop interface with a range of options, and was used to create the game Saira (link to Steam store).  This is an older package, with an older-looking interface to match it’s age, but has also proven it’s capabilities and been maintained and enhanced over the years.  In addition to the range of target-platforms offered by most of the similar packages Multimedia Fusion can also export an XNA project for Windows Mobile and XBox 360.

Alice

Alice is a free educational product developed by Carnegie Mellon University to help teach beginners basic computer science concepts in a fun and interactive environment.  Alice allows users to create 3d animations or games by dragging and dropping graphical tiles to input programming logic.  There are also a wide range of educational materials to help learn both how to use Alice, and how the concepts used can be more generally applied to the task of computer programming.

XtremeWorlds

XtremeWorlds is a free offering that works very similarly to RPG Maker (listed in the previous article) but aims to create online role-playing games instead.  A great choice for anyone interested in making a 2d online RPG with a retro feel.

Adventure Game Studio

Adventure Game Studio allows users to create Sierra-style point-and-click adventure games, and is provided free of charge.  Games are created with simple drawing and drag&drop tools, with simple scripting used to provide some of the more advanced logic.  This is a mature product that has been around for over a decade, and has been used to create plenty of games.

DOS-based game creation systems

I suspect there will be fairly minimal interest in these, but to try to be reasonably complete I’ll include them all together for those who might be interested  This page lists a number of DOS based game maker products.  It’s unlikely (though I won’t be made a fool by saying it’s impossible!) that you’ll be able to make any commercial products with these offerings, but if you’re interested in making some truly old-school games or simply investigating how older software of this type functioned they might be worth a look.

Know more ways to create games without programming, or do you have experiences with any of these or the packages from the original article to share?  Let me know in the comments!

Comments

  1. william zabel says:

    How about Unity? They have a free version that works with drag and drop as well as scripting.

    • I think Unity is an excellent engine, but I chose not to include it because scripting is required to implement anything non-trivial. It’s certainly well worth looking into, but you should expect to have to learn programming to use Unity.

  2. Andy Dbest says:

    Time to include Scratch ? :)

    • Absolutely, thanks for the reminder Andy — scratch is a great option, and especially good for learning programming fundamentals. I’ll write it up for inclusion in the body of the post in the next couple of days! :-)