Game engines are software tools used for creating games. There is a ton of these engines, the most known probably Unity, Unreal and GameMaker. What are they and what can they do?
Engines such as the Unity engine, Unreal Engine, and GameMaker Studio aim to help developers and their teams create good games in time. You can, of course, code games from scratch, but, speaking from experience, that takes forever and is extremely hard to do. You should use one of the engines available on the internet to create your games.
What can they do
The basic functionality of an engine is to render objects on the screen and to apply basic physics to them. Many of the best game engines go a step (or a thousand) further and offer the developers an array of functionalities used for creating games.
Engines can be based to create 2D, or 3D games (some can do both). GameMaker Studio, RPGMaker engines, or Construct 2 are used to create 2D games. Engines created for help developing these games can include tools for animation, sprite editing, 2D physics, UI, sound effects and music, particles, pixel-art games, vector art, 2D lighting, tilemaps, and much more.
3D engines, such as the Unreal Engine, can help you with physics, animation, model rigging, UI, sound effects and music, 3D particles, high-level lighting, low-poly models, terrain, level design, and much more.
The Unity software is an example of an engine, that can be used for both 2D and 3D.
Some engines allow building your game for only a certain platform, while others allow cross-platform games. Perhaps the most diverse engine, in this direction, is the Unity engine. It can build to PC, Mac, Android, iOS, web, etc.
What is the best engine
This is not an easy question and there is no simple answer, that could really work for all developers and all games. My personal favorite is the Unity engine, but that is probably because I have been using it for the longest time and I’m used to its UI and functionality.
I would like to, in time, cover all the main engines in their respective articles, telling you about my personal experiences as well as the pros and cons of the engines.
What game-making engine do you use? Let me know in the comment section below!