I recently began learning how to make games in a very simple program called Construct 2, made by Scirra games! It is a program that doesn’t require any coding experience or game-making experience! I had an assignment for school to give instructions on how to do something I know how to do. I thought that many of my readers would like to see the instructions as well. Here they are:
Making Video Games: The First Steps
So, you want to make a video game for the computer? Well, today I’m going to teach you how to make games in Construct 2, the easy, simple game-making program. Unfortunately, I can’t teach you to make a full game, because that would probably take a lot of instructions to teach. Instead, I’m going to teach you the first steps on how to make a simple side-scroller, complete with your very own controllable character, a background, platforms for the player to walk on, and more.
Step by Step
First, download and install the free version of Construct 2 off of scirra.com. Now open the program. Once you’ve opened the program, you should see an opening screen. In the top left corner, click “File” and select “New”. On the left, you should see “Size”. Change it to 4000 x 2048. Also, change the “Position” to 0, 0.
Now, let’s make a background. Double click the white space in the middle of the screen. That white space is what the screen will look like when the game starts. A small window will pop up with multiple types of objects to make. Click “Tiled Background”. Now click “Insert”. Another window will pop up. You can make your own background in this window, but a safer option is to make it in a photo editing program. (Photoshop, Paint, etc.) Make sure to make the background 4000 x 2048. Now, go back into Construct 2, and Click the little folder in the top left corner of the window that opened after you selected the “Tiled Background”. Upload the background that you made. Now hold the “Control” button and scroll the mouse wheel down to zoom out. The white chart on the left should have changed. Change its “Size” to 4000 x 2048 and its “Position” to 0, 0.
To the right, you should see a “Projects” tab. At the bottom should be a button that says “Layers”. Click it. In it should be layer zero. If you want, rename it by clicking the pencil icon, and type in “Background”. Now, create another background by clicking the green plus. If you want, rename this layer “Main”. Select the “Background” layer and click the lock. This makes it so you won’t accidentally select it while trying to select something else. Click the “Main” layer again.
Now we create the platforms for the player to walk on. Double click what used to be the white space again. Click “Sprite” and “Insert”. Go into your photo editing program and create a block. You can make a very fancy looking platform, a brown block, or something else; just make sure it’s a square. Now, upload it to Construct 2. Next, make the size on the chart to the left 24, 24. Of course, with just one block, the player has absolutely nowhere to go. So, Hold the “Control” button and click and drag the block. You’ve just made another block! At the top, under “View”, click “Snap to grid”. This will make it easier to connect blocks.
Let’s make the player. Double click the space, click “Sprite”, and “Insert”. Make the character in your photo editing program, and upload it. Do you see the empty space around the character? That should be taken out, because it takes up memory, and makes the game that much slower. In the top part of the window, there should be a rectangle with arrows on the four sides. Hold the “Shift” button and click it. Now, let’s set the image origin. In this case, the origin makes sure that the player won’t get stuck in the platforms. Click the Button underneath the piece of paper, and set the point at the player’s feet. (If it doesn’t have feet, put it where the feet would be.) If you want to, rename the object to “Player”.
On the chart to the left, there should be some thing that says “Add/edit” under “Behaviors”. Click it, and select the green plus. Next, select “Platform”, and click “Add”.
On the window that was opened on the last step, make the “Jump Speed” 1100 and the “Gravity” 2500. Now click the green plus again and add “Scroll to”. This way the screen will follow the player.
Select the block object that the player is supposed to walk on. Add the behavior called “Solid”. Now the player won’t fall through the block. Double click the space again. Select “Keyboard”. This just enables the keyboard to be able to be used. Now, go to the tab which is titled “Event Sheet”. This basically tells what is supposed to happen when the game starts, when the player falls off the screen, when an enemy is hit, or anything else. Add an action by double clicking. Double click the keyboard, and click “Next”. Click “On key pressed”. Now click “click to choose” and press the left arrow key. Now click “Add action”. Double click “Player” and choose the action called “Set player mirrored”. Lastly, add an identical event, except use the right arrow key, and set “Not mirrored”.
While I can’t give you the whole set of instructions, you should probably be able to figure out the rest by now. It is basically the same routine, adding events, objects, and other things. After reading four long pages about how to make a game in Construct 2, you may be surprised to find out that this is the simplest game making program that I’ve heard of! You may be happy to know that you can make games for multiple mobile devices in Construct 2. All you have to do is change the controls to touch controls, and buy the full version. Then, upload your game file (which should end in “.html5”) to phonegap.com.