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Software Development Kits and Engines, which one is your favorite?

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Hello every one!  I have been using Game Maker 6.0-8.0 for quite some time now making side scrollers and other 2D games.  I have a huge background in C, C++ and ( a little less in C#) programming and development.  I have wanted to produce my own game commercialy for the PC (direct X9 for now and maybe later direct X10). 

 

I love Game Maker 8.0 but there is a bug with screen tearing which I've been battling for a few months now with no cure.  I would not mind upgrading to 8.1, however, no one knows if this is fixed and it costs another $40.  I may look into purchasing Game Maker Studio, however, that will be some time away.  I have tried DarkGDK and like it, although I am not entirely sure I want to commit to it.  I am looking for new possibilities to use or maybe find reasons to stay with what I have.

 

I created this topic because I want to know what your favorite engine, software tool, development kit or software package is.  Why do you like it? What made you get it? Is it free or how much was it?  Did you start from scratch making your own system?  Did you or do you have more than just yourself working on project(s)?

 

Best regards,

Kevin Rose

Edited by allegory

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Well if you have a background in C++ then you could always try Cocos2D-X along with the new version of CocosBuilder. I keep trying other engines but, for writing 2d games I keep coming back to cocos2d because it is just so easy to use and all the source is there for you to play with.

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Well, the screen tearing bug still exists in GMStudio, to a point.  It only happens on certain cards and drivers.  A guy who works for Yoyo confirmed with someone from either NVidia or ATI about it, that it actually has to do with some kind of GPU difference, making things a single pixel off at times.  It is actually easy to get around I'm understanding if you draw the whole thing to a surface(render texture in GM) and draw that full screen, which even allows for post-processing effects easily.

 

About actual game engines, etc...  I'd say overall the most popular appears to be Unity, especially for 3d.  I'd say the reasons are basically what all it can do for a very cheap price.  The free version has some features that aren't in the pro version, but they aren't that big of a deal.  Also, for you, I don't think it would be an issue to use C# with it.  There are differences from C++, but not that much.

 

If you want something a little lower level, Ogre3d is a good contender.  I don't use it myself because I stick to GameMaker and Unity, but I've messed with it in the past.  It is somewhat bloated, and not quite as fast as it could be, but it is really pretty good overall, and is used a lot in the indie community, though not as much as Unity at least I would think.  Also, it is basically just graphics, so for sound, physics, etc... you will need to roll your own or bolt something else on.

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Thank you Buster2000, I will definitely give cocos a try.

 

kburkhart84, would you happen to have a link to the post where you saw this fix? And thanks I have tried Ogre but have not tried Unity.  I thought Unity was just a pluggin for playing  Unity games not a software tool, I'll have to take a look at that.

 

Best regards,

Kevin Rose

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FWIW, with C++, I use SFML for all my rendering, input, sound, windowing, and system needs.  I also typically use a 2d physics library for movement (I make only 2d games) such as chipmunk-physics or box2d.  For making levels, I've used both tiled (tile-based) and gleed2d (free-form).  And, I use raknet for my networking needs. (You can google all those resources)

 

Good luck!

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