The 3D Game Maker review

Creation

There are eight main settings from which to customize your game; Scene, player, player’s bullets, game enemies, enemies’ bullets; obstacles, end of level boss and game items. Within each setting there are nine or ten themes from which to select items; Shooter, horror, war, space, driving, jungle, cartoon, silly. You can also import custom themes, or themes from the Internet. Within each theme there are sets of items, of varying size.

For “scenes”, there are 45 different items in each category (which gives 360 scenes to choose from). Be aware that many of the scenes within the same themes are similar though. All are inside, as mentioned in T3DGM’s FAQ “This is not possible. Only inside scenes are possible with the scene editor. In fact the scene editor was a late addition to the software so we restricted what it could do to ensure we released for October”. Whilst there is a great selection for themes, selections under the rest are limited to nine per theme, giving 72 items for each setting. There is also the promise of downloading more items from T3DGM’s website, although at the time of writing I was unable to do this. Items can be mismatched at will, for example you can have enemies from “horror” and bullets from “space”, it won’t make any difference. Equally you can have a racing game in any of the scenarios.

All of which is fairly straight forward, and unfortunately breeds fairly similar games. Fortunately T3DGM also includes a greater level of creation; you can also specify sounds (again, from presets or user sound file) and game background music. This is a great advantage, as I dislike 99% of the music that games have. You can browse to your own MP3 files of your choice. In a similar vein, texture files can be changed, although I wouldn’t recommend doing so unless you are something of an artist. The screen on the left can be used to preview everything, from the linear path through the scene to the way your enemy dies.

After going through each category & selecting or modifying each individual setting to your taste, there is a final “global settings” page to go through, in which details of gameplay are defined (all other settings deal largely with graphics and music). With so much else dedicated to graphics and sounds, you would be forgiven for thinking gameplay had been forgotten. “Global settings” include the objectives (destroy all enemies and/or collect all pickups and/or just complete the level), difficulty, team-play & general appearance (most important being the title screen where your introduction to the game is). It is possible to have user FMVs as well, by importing your own AVI file.

After going through each category you can test out your game, and make amendments as necessary. You can save is as a 3DGM (*.3gm) file which can be edited later, or additionally an external .exe file which does not need T3DGM to launch it (however it cannot be edited by T3DGM). Similarly to the install process, this hogs up disk space; external files are unnecessarily massive.

 



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