Nintendo has a new game aimed at budding game designers
Game Builder Garage uses visual programming, contains tutorials and pre-made games, and will launch via Switch next month.
Game Builder Garage appears to build on some of the ideas that have appeared in the company’s previous projects, such as the Do-It-Yourself series of Labo Experiments and Super Mario Maker.
The visual programming language is the core of the experience, as it uses characters called Nodon that you can animate and set their properties.
And just like in Super Mario Maker, players can quickly switch between building and playing in order to quickly replicate ideas.
The app also features many different control options: Joycon controllers, a touchscreen, or a USB mouse.
Game Builder Garage comes with seven premade games, ranging from a 3D platformer to a multiplayer game, and the tutorial takes you on a tour of how to build it, so you can see the process from scratch.
Each game is divided into several steps, starting with basic concepts such as motion, before moving on to more complex design features, such as adding a counter or game screen.
Outside of those seven games, there is a “free programming” mode, where players can build whatever they want, and this mode is also available from the start if you don’t want to follow the built-in lessons.
Players can also share their creativity via code that can be sent to other players, and Nintendo says there will be an option to report inappropriate games, especially given the younger target audience for Game Builder Garage.
And in order to share their creations, players need to connect to the Nintendo Switch Online subscription service.
Once you download someone else’s game, you can play it and see the programming view to see how it was designed, and you can also make a copy to rely on for game development.
Nintendo over the past few years has focused more on building easy-to-use construction tools and introducing them to a wider audience.
In 2016, the company partnered with the San Francisco Public Library to host a series of game design lessons via Super Mario Maker, and in 2018 it launched a pilot program to bring Labo into schools.
Game Builder Garage is available on June 11 for $ 29.99.
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