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nce a popular entry level development tool, GameMaker now wants to play with the big guys. The upcoming Studio edition promises developers ‘app store’ ready executables for a broad range of platforms from one source We hooked up with prof. dr. Mark Overmars, the original creator of GameMaker and co-founder of YoYo Games, its current publisher. If GameMaker really offers what it promises, who should fear it? Adobe with Flash? “Flash will slowly die the coming years. Adobe knows this and they are afraid. Not of us, but in general. I think GameMaker HTML5 will be an excellent replacement for this. In particular for games, as it is designed with game production in mind.” And Unity, which also offers output to a large number of platforms and offers 3D, but is more expensive? “Unity should focus on what they are good at: doing 3D games. People using Unity for 2D games are wasting a lot of

money and, worse, a lot of time. Developing 2D games in GameMaker is much faster.” YoYo claims it’s possible to use Game­ maker as a central point for development for numerous, completely different platforms ranging from web (HTML5) to desktop (Windows, Mac OS X) and mobile (iOS, Android). That’s quite a claim. Is it really possible to produce ‘app store ready’ output for all these platforms, for one game, without rewriting at least half of it? “Yes, and we’ve already proved it. The 15 games YoYo Games published over the past year were transformed from iOS to Android with the press of a single button. Furthermore, the HTML5 versions were created with hardly any additional work. The only changes you have to make relate to form factors such as screen resolution, although GameMaker will automatically scale if you do not adapt it yourself, and the availability of certain interaction devices. If your game uses a keyboard you obviously have to make some changes to let it work on iPad. Inside your game you



fter a decade of Killzone, Guerrilla Games’ co-founder and Technical Director Arjan Brussee is moving to EA Visceral, creators of another shooter starring glowing eyes, Dead Space.

me, I now want to find a new personal challenge, and who knows where this will take me next.”

EA’s newest Executive Producer told Control: “At some point your ‘baby’ has matured, it can stand on its own two feet. The people at Guerrilla are absolute world class, they can continue on their own.” In an e-mail to his former colleagues he wrote: ““It has been a great ride. Every year there was something ambitious, new and inspiring to put my energy into. For

At the start of his career he was Lead Programmer on Jazz Jackrabbit, a game he created with Epic’s Cliff Bleszinski. At Guerrilla he was responsible for all four Killzone games and the PS2 shooter Shellshock: Nam ‘67. • 7 CONTROL Q1 2012

can check the device type so you can still use a single code base.” By the way, why would a (full) professor develop game... err, making tools? “GameMaker started as a hobby project. I was always fascinated by how you could create software that was extremely easy to use, but still would give users full control and flexibility. Doing this for creating games was my ultimate challenge. It only vaguely related to my work at the university. Nowadays, I work two days a week at Utrecht University, where I am involved in everything related to game development, and the rest at YoYo Games. But I am no longer developing GameMaker myself. We have a team of excellent developers from the game community for that, including the original programmers of Lemmings and GTA. They know what a professional game developer needs in a tool.” •

GameMaker Studio launches in April 2012. Basic (per seat) license: $99 (Windows & Mac executables). Additional output platforms (HTML5, iOS, Android) $200 per platform.

THE SUDDEN SUCCESS OF DUTCH INDIES Game Oven’s Bojan Endrovski (iPad hit Fingle) answering Gamasutra.com’s questions: Q: The indie game development community in the Netherlands really seems to be taking off in recent years, with studios like Vlambeer, Ronimo, and Game Oven. What do you think is behind this surge for the region, and what do you think Dutch developers offer that’s unique from other studios? A: The growing independent game development scene is a subject we often discuss with Vlambeer. We think it is mainly due to one organization making life and work easier for starting Dutch game developers: the Dutch Game Garden. All the companies you named are either inside their building or moving there (like Game Oven). Ronimo and Vlambeer are a huge inspiration to aspiring game designers and developers: they managed to reach big international audiences with their passionately built products.

Profile for Control Magazine

Control - Magazine for the game industry - 8th international edition  

Magazine for the game industry with articles on the Storytelling in Games, Global Game Jam, The Lamest Bug Ever, Adaptive Music in Games and...

Control - Magazine for the game industry - 8th international edition  

Magazine for the game industry with articles on the Storytelling in Games, Global Game Jam, The Lamest Bug Ever, Adaptive Music in Games and...