Testing Buildbox – A Drag And Drop Game Creation Tool

By   /   Jan 15, 2015

As games become more popular, so do game engines become more accessible to those outside of the tech spectrum. A big problem for a lot of people is that they don’t know how to make a game. This is where Buildbox steps in.

This latest in gaming software creation lets its users drag and drop assets into a simple wheel, dedicated to four main builder blocks: Background, action, character and object. This covers the basics for a ton of gaming genres.

Ideally, Buildbox wants to make game creation so effortless that it doesn’t require any prior knowledge or coding. It even boasts that it can make a game in one minute.

Taking that to the test, we played around with it for a full hour. Normally, this would be time enough to put down a silly game here, but there isn’t one.

Is Buildbox easier? Yes, it is. Is it effortless? Sadly, nothing is effortless.

One of the selling points is that this program is as easy as making a PowerPoint presentation, which is exactly that. No one has ever made a smooth slideshow, without tons of finicky hiccups.

The same is true for Buildbox. Without any effort whatsoever, it’s possible to drag and drop transparent game assets, apply changes to their behaviors and watch it run in real time. That’s already better than most.

To get the game working, however, it’s necessary to mess around with game parameters. There are presets for the standard mobile genres that take care of most of it, but it’s one step too short of completion.

Being able to properly make out hit detection, what object can block what and so on is still something that requires some extended research. Without that, assets just randomly act on screen, randomly breaking any law you had mapped in your mind.

Again, this is something that Buildbox has thought of and there are tons of little tips and tricks provided to make some everyday apps. It is still not as elementary as said; you’ll still need to “learn” how to properly use the tools, just like any other program.

So, is it possible to make a game in a minute or even an hour with Buildbox? Not if you indeed have no prior knowledge, you won’t. The silver lining here is that you will be able to get through a lot of the messy details in record time, at the click of a button.

What would take you a week or so to understand in other facilitating development tools can be done within a day with Buildbox. It is worth picking up, just for that.

Moreover, the software provides extensive porting options, complete with monetization and in-app purchases integrated. There’s a lot at your fingertips here and that with a lower barrier than usual.

Buildbox offers a free trial of 30 days, which it states should be more than enough to make your own little project and see it come to fruition. Now that’s a much more realistic claim we definitely agree on.

If you’ve got a week or two to spend an hour now and again on making a game, then this is for you. Frankly, that’s probably as low as the bar is ever going to get.

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