Game development as in itself sounds very complicated. But, like any other task, anyone can do game development with the right tools. In this post, we will cover the must have tools for game development that will help you succeed. A successful game developer should have skills in programming, art, sound, marketing. I wish someone told me about that.
When I started with game development I thought I only need to learn programming and I will succeed. I couldn’t be more wrong. I failed terribly at my first game launch not because the game was bad, its because I lacked the other skills. You should not make the same mistake. So, I will give you the free tools that you can use to succeed in game development
Game Development Tools
A game engine is software used to make games. You can make a game without a game engine but that will make the process 100 times more difficult. With powerful game engines like Unity and Unreal available for free, it makes no sense in making a game without them. I would suggest going with Unity for a complete beginner. You can read our post on Unity vs Unreal for beginners to know the details.
A game engine has most of the required components pre-made. So, you don’t have to code everything from scratch. For example, if you want the player to react to gravity you can just add the gravity component, and you are done. If you don’t use a game engine you need to code the complete physics into it. Learn Unity Now.
Art is an important part of game development. Generally, large video game companies have professional artists to do the game drawings. In the case of indie games, one person is mostly in charge of everything. There are a lot of drawing tools available but Inkscape is the best free drawing tool. Even a non-artist can master Inkscape in a matter of days. Learn Inkscape Now.
Features of Inkscape
- Object creation like drawing, text, shapes, etc.
- Object manipulation transform, grouping, alignment.
- Coloring- fill and stroke
- Multiple file format support for import and export.
Everyone has heard of Photoshop and that’s because it is a very powerful picture editor. But, Photoshop is not free. Gimp is the closest second. Gimp is almost as powerful as Photoshop and it’s Free. The main advantage of using Gimp is most of the plugins available in Photoshop are also available in Gimp. Learn Gimp now.
- Customizable interface
- Powerful photo editor
- Multiple file format support
- Multiple platform support
- 3rd party plugins support.
3D modeling and animation are the core of 3D game development. You can do basic modeling and animation in the game engine itself but for a full-fledge 3D model development you will need a powerful 3d Modeling tool like Blender. Blender is an open-source software for creating 3D models, animation, visual effect and motion graphics.
It’s a must have tool for all indie game developers. Blender is easy to learn and free. Blender is also built with export to game engines in mind. Exporting from Blender to Unity or Unreal is a piece of cake. Learn Blender Now.
Features of Blender
- Animation and Rigging
- Video editing
A game is no good if you cannot market it and get players for the game. You can create marketing graphics using tools like Gimp and Inkscape, but the quality of the image will be only as good as your creativity. We need to accept the fact that not all of us are born designers. Tools like Canva give us the option of ready made templates. You can make your game’s logo and poster in matter of minutes and it will look good. You can do stuff like curving the text with a simple click of the button.
Many feel that a logo and poster don’t make much of a difference if your game is very good. But, that’s not true. No one will download the game in the first place if the logo and poster are not attractive. It makes a huge difference. Even the image at the top of this blog post is made with Canva. Get Canva for free now.