I've been using Game Maker for almost a decade for my game development work. I've used it primarily because unlike the other engines out there it has a strong focus on 2D game development.
But it has certainly had its fair share of...problems. Problems that didn't become more apparent until I started playing around with Godot this past weekend.
What is Godot?
Godot is an open source source game development engine this is able to export to a LOT. You can export a project to...
- Computers ( Windows, Mac, Linux)
- Phones ( Andriod or IOS )
- Web ( HTML5 )
After building a simple platforming engine in this thing, I'm beyond impressed with what it's capable of. More than that though I'm impressed with its "Node" system for maintaining projects and instancing.
Also, you can push variables from scripts to be defined in the IDE, HUGE bonus. This is nearly impossible in Game Maker.
Probably my only gripe is that I can't get it to work with Windows on my Surface Pro 4. On Ubuntu Linux on the same computer however it works just fine.
What's Wrong with Game Maker?
There's a lot that Game Maker does right, and I'll always appreciate it as my first game development engine. However anything I worked on always seemed capped in some way, like the more I worked on a project the more out of hand it became in trying to maintain it and keep it organized.
This is why I've developed so many systems, such as my Master Control Engine to try and keep the project from becoming an unmanageable mess.
Godot, on the other hand, doesn't feel this way. I'm still learning it, but I already like how it's organized so much better than Game Maker.
Godots tools as well are very well thought out, and it already has a lot built in to help you do all the common stuff you'd need to do with a game. It seems like everytime I think "Well, I'm going to need a system for that" Godot already has something in place that at best is perfect, and at worst can be tweaked to meet my needs.
In Game Maker, it seems like everything must be built from scratch. Making development much longer than Godot.
The other big problem with Game Maker is an admittedly small, but very vocal section of its community. These toxic members tear down newer members that ask questions that are "too common". Watching how some people got treated on the forums just made me sick.
I don't know if Godots community is any better yet, but I'm looking forward to diving more into it as I get more familiar with the tool.
What Does The Future Bring?
I'm currently having a lot of fun with Godot, and I'm looking forward to maybe building a simple little html5 game with it.
For now, I just have a little engine that I built, based on Shaun Spaldings genius movement engine. I'm actually inspired by this game here and I'd like to make a simple little game with graphics such as this so to limit development time.
I'll post here on progress. Take care!