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Pre-GMC Quick Answers

Got a question?  Going to go to the GMC about it?  Well hold off for just a second.

I’ll outline what I mean here.  The reason I decided to write this article, is because I have recently been seeing many questions in the GMC novice and intermediate Q&A forums that all have a similar or exactly the same answer.

For the list of common question-answer pairs, read on.

1.  Is it possible for….?
Yes.  It doesn’t matter what you’re going to say, yes it’s possible, in some way.  As long as it has nothing to do with wizardry.  That is, GM can’t shoot fire out of your PC speakers over into your neighbor’s yard.  But it can pause music, make an rpg, etc.  You just have to know what to use and how to use it.

2.  Can Game Maker make a [insert genre here] game?
Similar to the above question, YES.  There is no limit in Game Maker that says “RTS game detected!  Shutting down!” The only limit of GM is your personal skill.

3.  How do I do….?
If you’ve seen something done before and you want to know how you can do it, there’s a way to figure it out yourself.  First, search the GM manual for what you are wondering.  Don’t go to the index, go to the search tab and type in some keywords.  Then search.  If a page comes up with some functions that will do what you want, great, use them.  If it doesn’t, then go to the GMC, search the tutorials forum.  If that is also no good, then search the dlls forum.  Usually if all else fails someone will have made a dll to do what you want.

If there is also no dll, start at the beginning with different search terms.  If you still get no help, search google.  If you’re the world’s most unlucky game designer, and you’re even failed by google, then either keep trying to figure it out yourself or hold off on that feature, because at that point the GMC members probably have no idea either.  You can try to see if anybody has been holding out with some info, but don’t expect much.

4.  How do I make [insert name of something like “MMORPG” or “wall jumping”]?
Don’t post these questions on the GMC.  PLEASE.  Nobody can help you, except by abstractly describing how to do it, which is probably not what you wanted anyways.  Just think about it, hard, and if you still can’t figure it out then just leave it out of your game for now.  It may change the flow of your game, but you should plan this kind of stuff out beforehand so this doesn’t happen.  Always think about or write out a representation of your basic engine before you actually start to write it.

5.  Why is this code not working?
First, try reading the SoulHow to Debug Your Game article.  If after trying those techniques your problem still isn’t solved, then it is reasonable to go to the GMC Q&A forums for a fresh pair of eyes.  Sometimes we all need someone else to take another look.

I don’t want to put forth the idea that you should never go to the GMC and ask a question.  But so many questions could be answered by exactly the same sentence, that it eventually comes down to wasting question-answerer’s time.  My advice is to only go to the GMC when you have a specific problem, nothing general (“how do I make an MMORPG”), nothing too large (“how do I make my character run up walls”), and nothing about general possibility (“Is it possible to make an RPG with Game Maker”).

Okay then, thanks for reading.  Hope this article has helped you get your answers a little quicker.  Don’t forget to leave da comments/feedback.

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