Global Game Jam is coming up this weekend, a chance to get together with other devs and students to create games in just 48 hours. One of the interesting aspects is not knowing exactly who I’ll end up working with, and that means being as prepared as possible to adapt.
Having freshly installed Windows 7 on my laptop (I usually run Linux) I’ve had to get hold of all the editors, tools and libraries I need again, and figured I would share here. Everything here is open source, free for non-commercial use or has a free trial version.
- Visual Studio 2010 for C, C# and C++ programming. If you’re a student you can get the professional edition from Dreamspark.
- XNA – nice to work with but distributing the game is awkward.
- Python 2.6 because I’m living (happily) in the past, along with Pyglet and PyGame (I haven’t actually used PyGame yet so will be avoiding it if possible).
- LÖVE, a multiplatform 2d game engine written in Lua.
- Unity. I really like the Unity engine and used it last year, but limitations in using source control and sharing projects with the free version are a massive hinderance.
- Flash in Flashdevelop with Flixel. I’ve only worked with flixel over the past couple of days but overall was really impressed.
- Notepad++, a great little text editor.
I’m not an artist but it’s useful to be able to re-export a model, make your own cubes and create some disgusting coder art. Don’t forget: the more hideous you make your coder art, the faster the artist will replace it. Unless they stop to strangle you first. Sorry artists.
- Paint.Net, a huge step up from Paint.
- The Gimp, for the scary times when I need to do something more complicated than can be achieved in Paint.Net.
- Blender, for messing with the 3rd dimension and converting models.
- LMMS, an easy to use application for composition if we get so desperate I need to do that. Cover your ears if that actually happens.
- SFXR, a sound effect generator, and the online AS version.
- Audacity, for tampering or recording audio files.
Storage and Sharing
- Tortoise SVN and Tortoise Git – easy to use shell integration for source control.
- Dropbox – quick and easy backups and a simple way to transfer assets.
- Chronolaspe – a tool to record timelapses videos from screenshots or webcam captures.
- Fraps for recording the game itself.
I’ve probably forgotten a few things here, leave your own suggestions in the comments.