Gamemaker or Java?

Discussion in 'Indie Basics' started by Mashew, Aug 25, 2007.

  1. Mashew

    Mashew New Member

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    I have been messing with GM for awhile and it is pretty interesting. Which do you think is a better development system for a starting developer? GM or Java?
     
  2. Bad Sector

    Original Member

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    They're not directly comparable because they are way different as systems. However, for making a game, i would prefer Java to GameMaker because a) i know it better, b) it's much more powerful and c) *much* more portable.
     
  3. mot

    mot
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    And the answer is YES. Why not just mess with Java for awhile as well and decide for yourself? No offense - but it's your choice really. We've already made ours :)
     
  4. papillon

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    For either case - does it do what you need it to?

    You won't get much done in the way of finishing a game if you spend the next few years learning a bunch of different engines instead of working on a project. :)
     
  5. Mashew

    Mashew New Member

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    That's true but, I figured that since you guys already devolp games, I figured that you might know which would be better. But, I do agree it is my decision. :p
     
  6. electronicStar

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    Both are very different in scope.
    If you want to make a very complex game, like for example a RTS, and need to access the code and complex object structures then Java is perfect for that.
    On the other hand, if you want to make a simple 2D game, gamemaker might be easier to use.
     
  7. John Cutter

    John Cutter New Member

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    This maybe goes without saying, but you need to gauge your skill/knowledge level. If you are new to game development and/or programming you should definitely start with GameMaker. You are much more likely to actually finish a game with this program because it's significantly easier to use.

    As your skills improve you will probably want to use a more powerful development environment, whether it's Java or something else. And it would be a real plus that you could fall back on your GM skills for quick prototyping.
     
  8. papillon

    Indie Author

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    ... I'm not sure why you think you'd need java over GM for these particular features. Maybe I'm not understanding what you mean, but there is code and there is inheritance. Pathfinding in a timely manner would probably be tough, though...

    now, if you want cross-platform, or play-in-a-browser, or to be able to translate to unicode languages, these are things you cannot do in GM. Yet. :) and for performance fine-tuning, you can probably do better in Java if you know what you're doing. I'm not sure, I haven't used Java other than very briefly in university.

    Which is the problem with asking a random group of people - how many of us are going to be experts in both? My experience of Java is EXTREMELY limited. Many people here may have never used either, at all!
     
  9. princec

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    I use Java a lot, and I've got to say, it ain't simple to use. It's just a lot simpler than the traditional C++ route is all.

    I think if you want a nice halfway house, try one of the Blitz Basic variants. Or just Flash in some form.

    Cas :)
     
  10. Greg Squire

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    GM and Java are completely different things. Java is just a general purpose language, where as GM is a set of tools and a scripting language, or in other words a "Game Builder/Engine". With Java you'll need to write your own framework/engine or use one that someone else has put together, and most likely you'll need to create your own level editor, or interface with a general purpose one that someone else has written. If you don't have much development experience, then GM might be a good place to start.

    There have been some good games written with both GM and Java. I would first decide what game you want to build and then pick a language/engine that will work for you. For lots of game types, GM would work just fine. GM wouldn't work well for heavy 3D games like a FPS. Performance can sometimes be an issue with GM games, but there are ways to get better results (you'll have to dig in the GM forums to find these "performance tricks". Java could yield better performance in some cases, but it all really depends on how optimal your code and any third party libraries are.

    You might want to also look into BlitzMax, as there have been lots of good games made with it as well. It's more comparable to Java, as it's more of a language and not as much of a "game engine" as GM is. You'd still need a framework and level editor, but its at a higher level than Java, as it has a lot of built-in graphics functions, that you'd either have to write or use a third-party library for Java.
     
  11. Teq

    Teq
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    I'm working (slowly, though thats because I'm spreading my time through freelance, arranging a mortgage, spending 'quality time' with my other half, oh, and socialising, so don't blame Java for this ;) ) through development using Java + JMonkeyEngine, things are looking good, I've tried Blitz3D, etc, before, but I'm a messy bugger so need something to help keep my coding practices a little more on the strick side :p
     
  12. Desktop Gaming

    Moderator Original Member Indie Author

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    I was talking about Gamemaker with somebody just yesterday. Look at the samples on the Gamemaker website.

    All the games created with it look absolutely awful. OK maybe you can blame the Gamemaker users for that rather than Gamemaker itself, its just that it all seems to horribly limited in what can be done with it and at the end of a day, you can't polish a turd.

    The only one that I looked twice at, was the guy who posted a photo of a car as a screenshot, but still, I didn't download the game to look because I'd gamble a rather substantial amount of cash that the game itself looks just as bad as all the others.

    I have no experience of Java, however based on what I've seen of Gamemaker, use Java. It can't possibly be worse.
     
  13. princec

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    Java's just... much harder.

    Cas :)
     
  14. papillon

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    No, it's just that the primary users are *twelve year old home-schooled boys*. Their graphics are therefore limited to what they can scribble in MSPaint or rip from existing games. If you judge by the screenshots, of course they look like crap. Most of them probably play like crap too, because a lot of these kids aren't going to have much experience in game design. :)

    If you want to see a range of shareware games made in GM, try:

    http://studioeres.com/immortal/
    http://www.juniper-games.com/smoozles/smoozles.htm
    http://www.getmagi.com/

    And me. None of us are perfect, of course, but most of us still had almost no budget. :) I'm nearly done with my first game that was actually able to spend MONEY on graphics and sound...
     
  15. oldschool

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    Desktop Gaming:
    Before you start giving advice why not actually try using gamemaker?
    You can make crap with java too. heck with any language or tool. Do you really think the graphics are the fault of gamemakers ability to render? Come on
     
  16. Desktop Gaming

    Moderator Original Member Indie Author

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    Its not advice, its an opinion. Its up to him what he does.

    (Opinion being, if every game made with it looks crap, then it probably is).
    No. That isn't what I said. Go and look at the gallery - it speaks for itself. Its far from encouraging.
     
  17. papillon

    Indie Author

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    WHICH gallery on WHICH website? I don't even know what list of games you're talking about.
     
  18. Pluvious

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    YOu know Papillon's games are all made in gamemaker right?

    http://www.hanakogames.com/
     
  19. papillon

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    (And I ALSO had no budget when I started and if he's judging purely on graphics quality won't be terribly impressed by that. Thus my listing several GM games earlier, to at least show a range.)
     
  20. mot

    mot
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