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Matthew Birdzell

What level creator works best for my system?

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Merry post Christmas and Happy early New Year :D. So I had a conversation yesterday at work about building a secondary skill outside of what I'm studying in university (so used to saying college, but I go to a university). I'm a prose fiction writer; my skills in level design or gameplay are nearly nonexistent. Which could be a bad thing if I were to expand my skillset. What sort of design program might I learn on my own? I have tried GameMaker in the past, and just about hated it. If I had a more powerful laptop, or a custom built desktop, I could do more with a better program. I also looked up Maya 3D just before typing this. The 2016 version I can run.

My system specs are:

Windows 10 Home

i7 quadcore 2.6 GHz 4720HQ. Goes to 3.5 while running some other programs (auto overclocking?)

8 gigs RAM

Intel HD Graphics 4600

NVIDIA GTX 960m 2 gig

 

Edited by Matthew Birdzell

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Any mainstream game development tool developed in the last 10 years or so will run on that hardware.  

If you need a "more powerful laptop" to run GameMaker on that system then something is seriously wrong.

We have some machines with lower spec than that at work developing big games on Unity, Unreal, and game consoles.  A few artist and modelers use machines with similar and lower specs, and most of the production and management folk end up using machines worse than that as they get handed down through the organization.

 

You mention some confusion at the 2.6 GHz going to 3.5 GHz range.  For many years Intel has added tech to change CPU speed (and power consumption) based on CPU usage. Intel's docs for the processor mean the processor can bump itself up to 3.6 GHz under load as far as heat permits but will slow down if needed, is designed to run continuously at 2.6 GHz without heat issues, and (if you have SpeedStep / EIST enabled) it can reduce the CPU down to about 600 MHz when it is sitting idle to reduce power needs.

 

Level design is often done with "white-box" or "grey box" environments.  You open a level editor and drop in a bunch of boxes and other shapes to ensure the level is fun.  You can do that in GameMaker:Studio if you're working in a 2D environment.  You or someone else will need to develop those gameplay mechanics in your hobby environment.

You can also do some level design as mods or level editors in existing games. Some games include editors that let you build your own maps and levels, you can use those to experiment with different ways to balance gameplay inside the level, or to serve as effective tutorials with difficulty curves.

 

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3 hours ago, frob said:

Any mainstream game development tool developed in the last 10 years or so will run on that hardware.  

If you need a "more powerful laptop" to run GameMaker on that system then something is seriously wrong.

We have some machines with lower spec than that at work developing big games on Unity, Unreal, and game consoles.  A few artist and modelers use machines with similar and lower specs, and most of the production and management folk end up using machines worse than that as they get handed down through the organization.

 

You mention some confusion at the 2.6 GHz going to 3.5 GHz range.  For many years Intel has added tech to change CPU speed (and power consumption) based on CPU usage. Intel's docs for the processor mean the processor can bump itself up to 3.6 GHz under load as far as heat permits but will slow down if needed, is designed to run continuously at 2.6 GHz without heat issues, and (if you have SpeedStep / EIST enabled) it can reduce the CPU down to about 600 MHz when it is sitting idle to reduce power needs.

 

Level design is often done with "white-box" or "grey box" environments.  You open a level editor and drop in a bunch of boxes and other shapes to ensure the level is fun.  You can do that in GameMaker:Studio if you're working in a 2D environment.  You or someone else will need to develop those gameplay mechanics in your hobby environment.

You can also do some level design as mods or level editors in existing games. Some games include editors that let you build your own maps and levels, you can use those to experiment with different ways to balance gameplay inside the level, or to serve as effective tutorials with difficulty curves.

 

No lol I just wasn't a fan of GameMaker back then. Perhaps I can try it again? Ehh...just don't yet like that idea. I had problems figuring out how to use it. And Maya 3D 2017 won't run; it would max my RAM. Thats not good. 

Thanks for the correction on CPU speed. I wasn't sure about that.

I also don't have any game environment for what I'm working on. I'm working out plot and story ideas for my game. What I'd like to do it make objects related to my ideas on that, random stuff from tutorials, or something else for learning the basics. On the other hand, In Halo 5, 343 Industries made an incredible Forge Mode that blows the older versions away. I've considered building stuff out of a fantasy short story I've revised twice this year just for fun. The problem is is that I'm really bad at Forge and its really complicated.

Edited by Matthew Birdzell

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13 hours ago, Matthew Birdzell said:

No lol I just wasn't a fan of GameMaker back then.

Just so you know Gamemaker studio 2 came out recently.  It has a much improved level editor with regards to tilemaps.  So if 2d is what you're looking into I'd give it another try.

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6 hours ago, Infinisearch said:

Just so you know Gamemaker studio 2 came out recently.  It has a much improved level editor with regards to tilemaps.  So if 2d is what you're looking into I'd give it another try.

I'm more of a 3D person.

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