Looking for feedback from experienced 'Clickers'

Discussion and feedback on Construct 2

Post » Wed Jan 06, 2016 12:19 pm

I've been a professional game designer for over 30 years. Since I'm a horrible coder I use tools like Fusion 2.5 and GameMaker to create prototypes and test features. Unfortunately, I just started a new job and everyone at work (but me) uses a Mac... which means no one can actually *play* any of my prototypes or tests.

To solve this problem I bought the HTML5 exporter for Fusion. It works reasonably well, though it's not perfect. As a possible alternative I downloaded Construct 2 and I'm learning to use it. There's a lot to like!

My question for "Clickers" is about workflow and time. Can you develop simple prototypes quicker using Clickteam's products, or using Construct 2? Any other advantages/disadvantages I should know about?

NOTE: I like Fusion 2.5 (and Gamemaker) and will continue to use them both, when it's appropriate to do so. Just wondering if I should add Construct 2 to my arsenal. I may make some simple HTML5 games in my spare time, for friends and family, therefore I've been paying for my own tools and software. It's getting sort of expensive... so I don't want to buy Construct 2, or invest time learning to use it, if it isn't going to be beneficial in the long run. Hence, my questions. :-)
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Post » Wed Jan 06, 2016 12:29 pm

Only you can answer, if C2 will fit your needs. I'm afraid there's no way around that, no one knows why something works better or worse for your particular workflow and customs.

That said - among all the "clickers" C2 has the best-performing HTML5 output.
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Post » Wed Jan 06, 2016 12:36 pm

Thanks for the reply Eisenhans. :-) To be clear, I'm not looking for qualitative feedback; I'm mainly interested in quantitative feedback from experienced "Clickers". Specifically:

- About how long would it take you to make a simple Space Invaders level in Fusion 2.5?
- About how long would it take you to make the same level in Construct 2? (Could you do it faster/easier?)

I have years of experience with Clickteam products, but only a few days with Construct 2. It will take me awhile to get proficient with C2 so I can't really do this comparison myself...
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Post » Wed Jan 06, 2016 1:07 pm

Well, I started with the full version of C2 three months ago and I'm already able to make a space Invaders level in less than two hours (by supposing I already have the corresponding graphics, otherwise as the worst designer ever, I'll take ages). A real veteran of Construct 2 could probably do that in less than 1 hour. I don't know any of Clickteam products, so I can't really help you in your comparison, but here's the power of Construct 2 anyway. You can have some great results, even with physic or advanced stuff like that, in less than one afternoon.

(You'll never make a real game in one afternoon of course, C2 is not pure sorcery !)
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Post » Thu Jan 07, 2016 9:59 am

Indeed, one of Construct 2's main advantages is the speed and ease you can develop products with it. If you know your way around the engine you can make things happen pretty fast. But before you buy it, I'd suggest what @Eisenhans did. Go and see for yourself that this engine is for you or not. Give the free edition a few more days (or a week) and decide only then.

Probably the biggest problem with this engine is that you have to use wrappers for deploying your games to various platforms (since it's a HTML5 engine). But if you understand what that means and what comes with it then you'll have a great time making games in my opinion.
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Post » Sat Jan 09, 2016 12:13 am

I've been pretty busy at work so my time with the Free Version has been limited. A few more comparison questions, for anyone who has time:

1. Although I've used Clickteam products for years, it has some quirks. For example, you can't put certain actions on the same event line, and you have to remember to adjust the order of the actions in an event. Are there similar "gotchas" using Construct 2?

2. Last week I tried to use Construct 2 to move a sprite along a path, but there doesn't appear to be a way to define a path and have an object follow it. I can do this in Fusion, and there's a similar (even better) feature in Gamemaker. I could use Pathfinding for an RTS or Tower Defense game, but how would I make something like Zuma?

3. Earlier this evening, I did a test with 8 bouncing objects using the physics engine. I then created the exact same test in Fusion and ran both as HTML5 apps in Chrome.) The movement of the objects was noticeably smoother in Construct 2, but just before the first bounce C2 always had a split second freeze in the movement. When I would restart the program the "hitch" was gone, so it seemed like some sort of caching problem? Is there a best practice for pre-loading that would prevent this?

4. You can't easily make a multi-level game in Fusion without first creating your own level editor. (It's not super hard to do, but is sort of time-consuming.) It sounds like I can use Layouts for my levels in Construct 2 and hook most -- or all -- of them up to a single Event sheet. Is that right?

Despite the lack of a "path" movement (#2 above), I have been kind of blown away by all the features in C2. Last night I discovered tilemaps and before that I was very impressed with the text-to-speech and speech recognition examples.
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Post » Sat Jan 09, 2016 1:23 am

1. You always have to take care of event (and especially sub-event) order.
2. Right now there's no factory-native follow path behaviour. You either have to resort to 3rd party plugins or roll your own.

4. You can use all variations.
- one level per layout and everything in one event sheet
- one level per layout and one event sheet per layout
- import/nest multiple event sheets into one, like includes in regular programming languages
- roll your own level editor/player and run it from textfiles within one layout
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Post » Sat Jan 09, 2016 10:28 am

I've been using both construct2 and mmf for over 2 years. My experience taught me that mmf is fun, but has some serious limitations in terms of code reusal!
- you can not give unique values to instances of an active object - in construct2 you can
- you have to manually copy and paste events/objects between frames. In c2 you can use the same objects and event sheets in all frames.
- There are no global layers in fusion, instead again - you have to manually copy and paste.
https://www.scirra.com/tutorials/1085/3 ... onstruct-2
global layers in construct2 are awesome!
https://www.scirra.com/tutorials/594/bu ... terface-ui

- mmf has no subevents, as a result you have to copy and paste your logic a lot. In construct2 you can nest it in nice and tidy ways.
- Construct2 has one click deployment with nodejs to windows,linux and mac. The games just work.No need to buy separate exporters with limited functionality like fusion's.

- Even clickteam suggests to people to make their own level editor, instead of using the one provided by mmf.
- the entire editor is full of hardcoded logic. Their tagging system has specific number of tags that can not be renamed or changed and dont work on a global level. (code reusal issues again) Even the animations editor is full of predefined animation slots that you can not rename. Some animation slots behave differently than others - this quirky design may lead to frustrating moments later on when you code your logic.

The community here is much bigger - with much more active development with addons and effects- all of which are free. Scirra also has a dedicated tutorials section which is packed full of good learning articles and videos.

Clickteam's html5 exporter creates games that are problematic to embed in nodejs or xdk. Whats more is that they are not webgl accelerated and under-perform compared to construct's.
Clickteam rip you off with their licensing fees. You have to buy separate exporters, but what is worse is that none of them support any mobile monetization features and the community is prohibited from sharing such features in addons for free. The only way to put ads in your mmf games in to buy their developer license which costs 400$ !
But they hide that in the small print and you find out about it after buying the exporters.

Construct2 in comparison offers all the export options with the personal license. You can try them out in the free version as well. There is no limitation on the admob object or any of the monenanization features - they are available even in the free version.

I can just go on and on :)
But the truth is that I like both products and hope they continue to compete and improve. If clickteam still makes money with their strategy - I wish them best of luck. It's just that the pricing model seems like outdated bullshit to me - especially considering the competition in other game engines.
Unity and Unreal for example dont put any limitations on the developers and dont cut their products into chunks you have to buy separately. Instead they make money only if the developer has made a lot of money using their engine.
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Post » Sat Jan 09, 2016 11:56 am

That's the kind of reply I was hoping to get Blurymind! Thanks so much for taking the time to respond to my questions. (Thanks for your reply too, Eisenhans.)

Based on my research it sounds like C2's biggest weakness is exporting to other platforms, due to the reliance on HTMl5 wrappers which can be a little slow. I'm mainly looking for a rapid prototyping tool to test and show (in a web browser) game features at work, and maybe a tool to help me make some simple HTML5 games and apps at home. (For example, I'm working in Paris now and trying to learn French, so I wanted to make a flashcard app. I wanted accurate speech synthesis, and maybe even speech recognition, but I couldn't figure out ANY way to create such an app. Then, a few months later, I download C2 and it has examples of both features!!)

Ordering my license now. :-)
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Post » Mon Jan 11, 2016 1:25 pm

Using Clickteam's tools I sometimes get unexpected behavior when I try to put too many actions on the same event line. For example, on a Start of Frame event if you try to read data from an array and then use that data there can be issues. So you have to create another Start of Frame event and put the new actions there. Is this a problem in C2, as well?

I continue to be impressed by Construct 2's features. I was playing around with the debugger this weekend and it's SUPER useful! Very happy with my purchase.
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