Getting in the Xbox One Game with GameMaker Studio

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Description

Great news today for GameMaker Studio users and for those wanting to get into the Xbox One game development... um... game...

Ship to Xbox One with GameMaker Studio 2 UWP

"XBOX LIVE CREATORS PROGRAM SUPPORT COMES TO GAMEMAKER STUDIO 2

Continuing GameMaker Studio 2’s banner launch year, We have officially partnered with Microsoft to give developers (you guys!) access to the Xbox Live Creators Program. With GameMaker Studio 2’s simple-to-use 2D toolset in hand, you can now quickly and directly publish your games to Xbox One consoles. The Creators Program’s minimum certification process has no requisite concept approval process. Once Xbox Live sign-in is implemented and Gamertags are displayed on the user interface (based on standard Windows Store policies), indie developers can easily bring their games to both PC and console environments.

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Want to get started with GameMaker Studio? Sarah Jeanne Sexton has a great post just for you, taking you from the very start to your first game..

Demystifying GameMaker Studio

GameMaker Studio is a free, code-optional game engine. It creates 2-Dimensional games and is a well-documented tool that has been a staple in the independent games community for many years. The engine is robust, and a lot of well-known indie games have been made in it, such as Spelunky by Mossmouth and Undertale by Toby Fox. This Integrated Development Environment (IDE) includes an object editor for structuring workflow, a tabbed script editor, drag-and-drop features to enable game creation without going near code (hence the phrase “code-optional”), an extensive library of events and actions, and code preview tools for the GameMaker programming language (GML), based on C.

To get started making 2D games on a PC right away, just look up “GameMaker Studio Yoyo Games” or visit http://yoyogames.com. Follow along to go to the website, download GameMaker, install it, and then create a new project!

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Installing the Tools

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Trial

You’ll be presented the option to “Try for free today,” which takes you to yoyogames.com/get. The Trial includes everything you need to make and test a game. If you want to release & distribute games via Windows and other platforms such as iOS, mobile devices, or consoles, you must purchase an additional license for GMS. You can have infinite sprites, backgrounds, and levels in the free version.

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Make Games, Not Excuses!

It’s important not to stop here, even though it feels like you’ve already accomplished a lot. You must click on “Tutorials” or “New Project” so that you don’t just stop here.

Oftentimes, when you get to this stage, you’ve downloaded the program, it’s on your computer, and you own it… but you've never really opened up a new project. You just sort of get overwhelmed by all the buttons and dials and gizmos and doodads.

Keep reading to learn about movement controls, sprites, objects, rooms, and more.

Tutorials ...

Create a New Project

On the Start Page, the Projects section is where you can create, open, or import projects. You can click New to create a new project, Open to open an existing project, or Import to open a GameMaker: Studio 1.4 GMX project file, or to open a compressed YYZ GameMaker Studio 2 project file. Both Open and Import will open the file explorer for you to browse to the project file you require.

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Sprites

A great way to start learning how to use tools is to pick a classic game to reproduce, like Space InvadersPongPac Man, or  Asteroids. In this quick example, let’s make our own copy of Space Invaders.

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Animation

The easiest way to animate a sprite is to duplicate your initial image by clicking “Copy” up at the top, paste it, then double-click on the second image to open it, then use the editor to make a second “frame” in an animation sequence slightly different from the first. Close again when you’re done.

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Events and Code

Re-open our Object by double-clicking on it. Now we get down to the functionality of GameMaker! “Events” are moments in the game loop where things are made to happen based on what you have programmed for them. GMS splits game time into “steps,” with the game speed defining how many of these steps there are per second. A “step” is the loop that runs constantly with all the events being checked and triggered while the game runs. GMS works with cycles of events. From the moment a room is started to the moment it is finished, there is a game loop running. A series of events are run every step, and you can choose to place code or drag-and-drop actions in your instances that respond to these events.

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Rooms

Right-click on the Rooms Resource Folder, and choose Create Room. All games that you make in GMS need at least one room to run.

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Compiling

If you would like to test out your controls at this point, you may click the Arrow “Play” button.

This will compile your project, and will also be where any errors pop up. Compiling your game can mean one of two things: compiling it for testing, or compiling it to create an asset package for a specific target platform.

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Your First Game

To dive deeper into learning more about enemy movement, shooting projectiles, spawning, tiles and views, keeping score, sounds, and creating a title screen, please check out the official tutorial for “My First Game - DnD” available inside GameMaker’s start screen, or the YoYo Games YouTube video tutorials found at youtube.com/user/yoyogamesltd/videos. If the game that you’re thinking of building falls into a similar genre, it’s really nice to not have to start completely from scratch.

Conclusion

The goal of this blog post is to pass on technical knowledge and to make games development easier for beginners new to the world of programming. I hope that I’ve done a good job of Demystifying GameMaker Studio! ...

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