Make a video game!

IN DEVELOPMENT: Screenshot taken from Sunset Fields, a game being created by Seth Hahn

Seth Hahn | Writer

December 3, 2020

If you’re a gamer, then you’ve probably wanted to make a game before. Something about it seems magical. But if you’ve ever given it a shot, you may have found yourself wracked with many difficult and hard decisions right from the start. I plan to simplify your issues just a bit.

The first thing you’ll need is a way to actually make a game, and in the past this was done through pure mathematics and complicated code. However, in more recent years, people, especially beginners, have been drawn to game engines-applications that assist in making games. “A game engine is a great tool for making games, and there are so many game engines to choose from,” junior Robert Schumacher said. “You can definitely find one that fits your needs.” Some that may sound familiar are Unreal Engine, CryEngine, Godot, and Unity. “I think that Godot is a very good way to make games, especially if you know how to program, because the documentation is relatively easy to understand,” junior Adam Brower said. “Godot also has a very skill ceiling, so it can be used as you continue to create games.”

But to make a game, you don’t even need a game engine! You can make a game with any programming language! Although, if you do so, expect to use some more math, and to put a bit more effort into it.

After selecting an engine, you need to decide which type of game to create. Then, you have to actually design the game you want to create. For your first game, I’d recommend a 2D game; 3D requires more math and more complications. Create an outline of key ideas you’d like to implement into your game. “When making games, don’t be afraid of taking ideas from other games, projects, or stories you like, but try and make them your own by changing them in a way that you believe improves them,” senior Jack Whitney said.

All that’s left is actually making the game. “It’s important that people go in looking to learn because there is so much information to the point where it can be overwhelming,” senior Caden Burton said. “They should then build their ideas piece by piece with what they learn.” You are going to need to learn, or know, how to use a programming language, some sort of graphics or art, and music to compliment it. Programming skills come with practice and the more practice, the better you get. For art and music, download premade assets for your first game, unless you already have the skills to create your own. In general, the entire process is quite simplified if you use a game engine.

From here, just spend time practicing and learning! In the end, “people should keep in mind that their first project will most likely be extremely bad, but that shouldn’t discourage them,” Robert Schumacher said. “The process is always a fun experience, and the more you try, the better you’ll become.”

2 Comments on Make a video game!

  1. It’s really cool that the barrier for entry into coding games has been lowered as a result of the diversity of game engines and platforms available to everyone. If some of y’all are coding a game, let me know! There are a lot of teachers who enjoying playing video games as well, and I would personally enjoy testing out your creation.

  2. Yeah, I 100% agree with you. There is so much potential to make games, especially since many game engines went free. And there are so many, amazing resources online that open so many opportunities.

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