Getting Started With Defold Game Engine

DefoldSo, I’ve decided to evaluate Defold, the free 2D game engine. I’ve been struggling to settle on an engine, or whether to even use one. As a very established web developer, it is hard not to see everything with the same PHP and Javascript hammer I use for all my projects up till now. But if I want to get serious about game dev, I’ll need some new tools at my disposal. In this article I will document my decision process and my initial results and impressions with Defold.

Installing Defold

  1. Go to their website, create an account using Google Accounts. Login to the Defold dashboard.
  2. Download Defold for your platform. I’m using Linux 64-bit.
  3. Unzip the download (about 300MB large).
  4. Run the from the terminal. Inside the editor you’ll see the welcome message.
  5. Go to the website Dashboard and create a new project. A blank one, or a tutorial project.
  6. Inside the editor go to Open Project. You will be prompted to log into your Google account.
  7. After creating a branch for your project, it will open in the editor and you’re ready to go! You can Build and Run the project, make changes on the fly and Reload the Resource to see your changes live.

I had no trouble at all with all of this. A bit of an issue when running the editor from the executable – had to run the sh file from the terminal, but other than that, no problem! I was able to go through one of the tutorials, and even one-click build to an Android APK file. What! So easy. All this in under an hour.

I have to be frank. I’m not used to things going so smoothly when it comes to software under Linux. I usually need to install a bunch of dependencies, build something, find errors, google errors, pull out hair, and MAYBE 20% of the time get it working. So Defold working so smoothly out of the box on Linux is a huge, HUGE plus for me.

So far, I am intrigued! Stay tuned for more posts about Defold.

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