Defold continues our partner count-down to NG16, which will run until Friday 13 May:
You might have heard that King have opened up their game engine Defold to the world – for free. This is Ragnar Svensson’s story about how Defold was created and the choices they made during development:
Defold started with me (Ragnar) and Christian Murray discussing how to best create new games. With years of industry experience, me as lead programmer and Christian as engine architect, we often discussed trends, technology and best practices in the industry.
I remember specifically, one late night when Christian suddenly said: “I’m actually making a game engine at home,” and I replied: “Me too!” Realising that we should build together instead of separately, we started the story of Defold.
One of the key things we considered while building Defold was performance. Performance affects everything. Not only run time but also workflows, load time and everything else that has to do with a game engine and creating games. Without performance you have nothing and that’s why we value it the most.
We also wanted to maximise creativity, which we’ve achieved by removing obstacles, friction and minimising waiting-around-time.
Scalability is another aspect of performance. If your game grows with more levels or bigger playable worlds, it shouldn’t be restricted by the engine. A game engine should efficiently create complex scenes or structures and reuse objects. Basically it should just work for you, not against you.
Cross platform is an important factor when you’re making a game. Because it’s not always obvious what platform will work the best when you start creating your game. That choice should instead come at the end of the project when you have all the pieces of the puzzle at hand.
When we started we were only two programmers so we knew that we had a monumental challenge ahead of us. We could never rewrite code. We just had to solve problems, once and for all. That meant that we had to have a very strong design focus before we started to code, making sure that we had cracked every problem before we dove into the code.
As a final note, I often compare creating games with sculpting in clay. Clay is the perfect interactive environment to instantly see how your action is affecting the material. We want to create the same situation in Defold where you can test things and instantly explore the result.
Now it’s your turn! Download Defold for free at www.defold.com!
Meet us at Nordic Game
We’re at booth A20 on Wednesday and Thursday – and don’t miss Defold co-founder Ragnar Svensson’s speech at 14:15 on 18 May!