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Swordmaster

Questions about game development platforms

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Can anyone list the platforms you can make games on that would be relevant to a hobbyist developer like myself (or provide links to articles)? Along with whatever else is needed to create the games, like other software, and what the advantages and disadvantages and requirements are for developing on a respective platform. Thank you.

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obviously the x86 and x64 platforms are the easiest to develop for, as there are no costs to get into it aside from the time dedicated to make the game. Android is also very easy to get into since anyone can put an app on the market--provided they pay the on-time $25 fee to make a developer's account. iOS is only $100/year, but it can be a challenge to have your game approved for the market by apple. Really, the only ones that are truly difficult to get into is consoles (including handhelds) as there is a strict approval process that must be gone through before you are even given access to the console's SDK, not to mention the price tag that goes along with the development kit and developer's account.

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If you use a game engine like Unity then they will tell you which plaform you can run on depending on which license you buy. However if you are making your own games then it depends as jonbonazza pointed out above. The easiest is to develop for Windows because all you need is a free compiler (Visual C++ 2010 Express) and off you go!

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It all depends on the time and the money you want to invest on.

You can create games on all platforms (PCs, APPLEs, handheld devices, game consoles). Jonbonazza already covered platform cost. I should add it all depends on what you wish to do and previous coding experience you have.

Regarding a hobbyist programmer with little to no money and not much time to spare, I would suggest to use the PC or APPLE computer you have at home and download/install the Python language. It is more than enough to start out (besides many game development libraries exist for that language). Please note it is game content creation that is the time and money sink: all sprites, 3D models, sounds, musics must be created (or bought from an artist). Scenarios must be written beforehand and game mechanics must be thought out before starting coding.

Learning C++ as a hobbyist is interesting if you have a PC (windows / linux). APPLE programmers use objective-C. In both case, compared to Python, the learning curve is steeper and development is longer (due to compilation, and creating the functions to interface with a graphic/sound library).

Hope that helps.
Red.

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Thanks guys. I appreciate the answers. I have some questions though if that's okay.

1. How hard is it to program in Flash, since I would most likely be making a game by myself.
2. Is there a market for Flash games on PC? If so what type of games should I be making and where should I promote them?
3. Would you guys recommend using Flash over something like the Python language for someone new to programming? And why?
4. Does Flash support 3D?
5. If I understand correctly (from what I've been told) games where your character can roam freely in 3D space are harder to program than ones in a 2D space? Is this right? Or how does it work?

I'm really quite new to game development, so forgive me if some of the things I said aren't accurate. My true passion is really art, but I'll delve into programming also if it's necessary to makes games.

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1) I can't answer this question, as I have never dabbled in Flash.
2) You should never decide on a game genre based on someone else's (In this case the market's) desire. Choose a couple of genres that you enjoy playing, and THEN look at the market. If you are not interested in the genre you areworking on, you will never finish it.
4) As of Flash v11, 3d has *supposedly* been sped up greatly. It is now a very viable option, again *supposedly*.
5) I'm going to let the others argue over this one. :P

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