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How To Make A Game: learning through play - Edge Magazine

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The game industry has never been more interactive. Not just in terms of the new frontiers of input methods – from motion controls to breakthroughs in haptic feedback and virtual reality – but the very means by which games are being created and distributed. More than ever, it’s players who are being empowered to become the designers, developers, programmers, artists, and so forth. Games such as Endless Space and Miner Wars are being shaped by online communities during their development. Valve’s Source Filmmaker invites us all to become machinima auteurs, manipulating its character models and telling our own stories with them. Then there’s Gameglobe, which is aiming to become the user-generated content equivalent of YouTube for games.

These creative environments are feeding a powerful desire among players to make and share digital media, which was the sole domain of experienced professionals a few years ago. User-friendly in every sense, such tools are honed to inspire absolute newcomers to get stuck into making games within minutes. Whether they’re powerful and flexible level editors for existing games, such as Bethesda’s Creation Kit for Skyrim, or full game creation tools like GameMaker, they tend to hide great swathes of the complexities of what’s really going on beneath their interfaces in a bid for user empowerment, but usually offer the chance to dig into the code, too.

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