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8 years ago by NatasZBaker

Dear Programmars,
Please forgive me for any huge grammar mistakes. I just hope they don't get too much into the way of the message I am trying to say.

So around two months ago; I decided I was going to take that big move from game player to game maker with zero experience in any kind of coding. I was offered a chance to help someone write a text based game if I was supposed to learn Javascript, so I decided this was the perfect opportunity to learn some code. So tadah, that explains a month learning over some Javascript, and as you might think it was hard. Very hard, but I managed to pick up alot, or so I thought, as my knowledge stopped at function expression, just short of learning about closures, hoisting, objects, and prototypes, I have a good reason for why I stopped.

Well, it turned out that the person didn't want my help anymore, so that was 30 dollars lost for a month of classes. So I just quit learning Javascript for a while because I had to remotivate myself to my goal of making a game. Well a lot of self motivation later, I find myself here, on the edge of giving up after finding Limejs was for advanced programmers and for not knowing what the Million Tile Engine was even written in before I came here. The sweet promise of this being clear and easy perking up my ears and the large community, making plug ins for the engine helping me decide to look into this engine.

Well, now for the question, should I even use it? I have a piss poor knowledge of Javascript, I might be able to afford another month of lessons, skimping a bit out of food ( Yes, I have decided one way or another I will make a video game ), and with scraping up enough change I will try to purchase this engine. How much is needed to know before I even dare waste 100$ dollars that can be used for eating then for feeding a fruitless hobby?

My forgiveness to any serious programmarers that read this and who is digusted with my small knowledge of the code at hand and the amount of time I have been learning it. (( Learning as in having tons of handwritten notes and references for Javascript )) I just want to know if Impactjs is right for someone like me? Just in case this is a factor in anyone suggestion over rather I should use this or not; I am really self-motivated towards this. Consider this my right of passage if you will, to see if game designing is for me.

Once again, sorry for any grammar mistakes, I tend to write how I speak which is in horrible english.

8 years ago by drhayes

Learning is awesome. Learning JS even more so. ( =

Don't pay for JS lessons. There are tons of free, high-quality resources:

You Don't Know JS, a book written by Kyle Simpson, JS expert
Learn JavaScript
Eloquent JavaScript
Khan Academy

Seriously, save your money! Eat! There are free JS lessons everywhere.

Honestly, it sounds like you shouldn't be spending $99 on a proprietary game engine. I'm a big fan of ImpactJS, but you should also check out Phaser. It's definitely more complicated than Impact but it also has powerful features that Impact lacks.

There's a mostly helpful community at html5gamedevs. They're not all as nice or knowledgeable as the Impact community but they're very responsive and the creator of the framework manages to reply to a lot of posts.

Good luck! Have fun! Don't starve! Make games!

8 years ago by NatasZBaker

Whoa thank you very much :) Maybe you wouldn't mind doing some side by sides of phraser and impact? You seem like you know alot and I would love to pitch my game to you so you can see how possible it is on either or.

When I ment I wont have enough money for eating I ment I cannot go all out on myself and will have to have a noodle diet for a while. As soon as I am finished with this message I am going on a little Javascript tour through all the links you sent me and ending my codeschool account! If you message me on Ill show you just a rough sketch of what I want to do.

I want to leave these blogs free to people who have paid for the licenese.

8 years ago by Joncom

I think ImpactJS is a great starting point for a beginner of JavaScript. The engine is simple and easy to learn, while powerful enough that it won't hold you back. Also, the documentation is top notch.

8 years ago by Cless

Impact is probably your best bet. It has a ton of information, it is simple to use, has lots of plugins, has a helpful community, etc.

Phaser is cool, but I would avoid it for now unless your game is really simple. Anything remotely complex in Phaser requires strong JavaScript knowledge at the moment. Furthermore, things that seem like they should work in Phaser just don't work. Things that work one day don't work the next. It's a mess for now. Not much organized or updated information on it yet. Fortunately, there will be a book for it sometime.

But it kind of sucks if you have to squeeze your budget to pay for Impact. You'll need to be confident you can really go through with your plans. The hardest part of making a game is finishing it. Making a good game requires programming, design, planning, and dedication.

8 years ago by drhayes

Sure thing. First off, I wouldn't say that Phaser is better than Impact. It entirely depends on what you want to do.

Joncom is 100% correct: Impact is the engine I'd recommend to JS beginners because it provides so much of the project structure for you, with straightforward methods for implementing sprites, using tilemaps, etc. The documentation doesn't just tell you what everything is, it also tells you how to use it. You should spend some time reading the documentation to get an idea what you can do. For making platform, Mario-style games it is nearly perfect. For making top-down JRPG-type games it's also nearly perfect.

Here are the things that I don't like about Impact:

1. It's closed source. That means it's harder to publish games to show people how to make games. It's harder to use for education. We can't help fix bugs.

2. There's no extensibility system beyond overriding built-in methods on already existing objects or creating your own custom classes that you have to figure out how to integrate into your game. Normally, this isn't a problem... but pretty much everyone has tried to figure out how to integrate scenes into Impact and everyone has a custom solution. Scene functionality allows you to have a menu screen, the game itself, a game over screen, etc. I'm not saying it's impossible, it's just not built in to Impact and extending it involves a lot of custom code.

Check out Collin's excellent work on Impact++. This is a great example of what you can make Impact do with the right work... but also an example of what it takes to get Impact to do things it couldn't do from the get go.

What if you want gravity to pull everyone to the right? What if you want to have different types of friction depending on what tile the sprite is standing on? Heck, what if you want to use a different type of physics engine than the one Impact ships with?

3. Impact doesn't make more advanced Canvas functionality available. WebGL? Shaders? Clipping paths? Again, it's not impossible with Impact... it just involves a lot of custom code that makes it harder to upgrade the engine.

Phaser has different good and bad features. Here's the documentation for Phaser. Phaser assumes you know what you're doing with large-scale JS projects. There are several open questions on how to structure Phaser games on the forums and multiple viewpoints on what makes a "good" project structure.

Up until now, Phaser's been a moving target. There have been large-scale changes to the API that make it hard to upgrade from one version to the next. The creator promises that we're done with that as of 2.x, but we'll see. All that flexibility makes it hard to know where to start.

On the other hand, you have a lot of choice in whether something is a Sprite, a BitmapText, an Image, a TileSprite, etc. There are multiple physics systems. There's support for particles, and gamepads, and touch events... Phaser can do everything that PIXIJS can do, plus some more.

There are a gajillion Phaser examples that show you the functionality of the engine, but don't tell you how to make an end-to-end game.

Uh, wow. I didn't mean for this to be so long.

8 years ago by NatasZBaker

I am really sorry DrHaynes but you are convincing me more to use impact just because you are willing to help along with the community of impact, but however I feel like all recommendations are being made with any solid grounds with what kind of project I am working on so to be more helpful with the situation & without spoiling too much of what I want to do; maybe based on that we can have which is better for YOU instead of what is better overall since that wont get anywhere with these both seeming like really great software.

1.) A large part of this game will be top down.

2.) A small section of this game will need to be clickable scenes ( ex: A picture of a bunch of shops and houses you can click on for sidequest and items. With this there needs to be some scenes.)

3.) Something that wont struggle and might be able to make an RPG. ( I may need this great community since it will all be touch and go for making simple attack/defense/speed/crit% stats with variables. Meaning a turn counter will be perfect for this. The combat system is where the meat will be at along with one other thing. )

4.) A software that can handle a very large amount of memory...?

I am sorry if none of that seems very helpful but I don't want to give too much away in a public forum of a software that I dont even have the license for. That is why I wanted to message Mr. Haynes about my idea which I will be doing after I type up this message, if his email is anywhere. I would love to hear more on your thoughts on this as well, Cless, and Ill message you if your email is anywhere.

(( Sorry that my grammar is crummy ))
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