Are you considering creating a game in your free spare time or as a full-time game developer? You should check out Godot if you want a FOSS game engine on your Linux machine. There are tons of open source game engines and of course including those proprietary ones that most people use and talk about (for instance, Unity). Godot is fairly new but that doesn’t mean it’s poor in features. It’s the opposite! Read on below to learn more about this awesome game engine.
Godot is available as flatpak app. I recommend using the flatpak version because you get the ability to update to its latest version through your Update/Software center. Otherwise, the normal way is to download Godot from its official website godotengine.org
With manual download, you won’t be able to update to its latest version in case an update has been rolled out. Instead, you’d have to do the old fashioned way of downloading the latest version periodically.
On the first launch, you’ll see a window such as shown below –
You can either start a new project or import an existing one stored on your disk.For a new project, you’ll be taken to a new window where you can start a new 2D node, 3D node or UI node. 2D node is for 2D games, the 3D node for implementing 3D games while UI node is used for designing GUI.
Make 2D and 3D games
Godot allows you to make either 2D or 3D games for desktop platforms and mobile phones and web too. Making 3D game is harder if you are just starting out. So it’s wise to first experiment with some 2D games before directly skipping to 3D. Moreover, the Godot community has made some demos that fit in the category 2D in 3D or 3D in 2D where you can implement a 2D game on 3D environment and vice versa.
There are tons of tutorials and demos which you can access easily on the Assets tab.
OpenGL 2 or OpenGL 3
For starters, you might wonder whether to go for OpenGL 2 or OpenGL 3.
OpenGL 2 is an older version while 3 is the newer version. The newer version focuses more on cool 3D effects so if you are making a game that’s 3D or has cool GPU art, then it’s better sticking to OpenGL 3.Otherwise, to maintain compatibility with older hardware such that you do not employ a lot of fancy intensive GPU stuff, OpenGL 2 is recommended.
Once you’ve completed your game project (or prototype) you might want to export it to your families and friends could play it and in turn, you receive valuable feedbacks. Go to Project > Export and select a platform of your choice.
But first, you would have to download and install export templates before you could start exporting your project. Go to Editor > Manage Export Templates
Where do I start?
I recommend starting with the documentation first. There’s a 2D game project called “Dodge the Creeps” where you’ll be guided through the step by step procedure for successfully creating that game. Along the process, you can jump to resources like learning GDScript, project structure, etc so you can familiarize yourself better with the game engine.
Of course, you should not forget YouTube 😉 There are tons of tutorials made by awesome Godot-ers!
Hope you are hyped about Godot game engine. It’s open source so you don’t have to pay a penny to use Godot. Again, you can use this game engine to make games for desktop platforms, mobile phone or web. Let me know what you think about this game engine in the comment section below.