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Have YoYo Games improved the quality of GameMaker games?

A quick look at the 20 most played games on reveals a host of totally playable games with decent graphics and sound effects which have obviously had some serious time invested in them.

Some of the most popular games on YoYo

Have there always been this many high quality GameMaker games and has the creation of the YoYo Games website simply brought them to more prominence, or has YoYo helped to increase the number of, and professionalism of, top-end GameMaker games?

For sure there are still a high number of medium and low quality games, however the YoYo Games website doesn’t give them much screenspace thanks to its various methods of ranking games (according to star ratings or number of downloads).

GameMaker’s reach had been increasing organically prior to the creation of YoYo Games as the software developed and was discovered by more people. Certainly I do not believe YoYo Games claim to have made any real impact on attracting people to GameMaker – but have they improved the end result – the number of high quality games produced by users of GameMaker?

The introduction of large prize competitions by YoYo Games have undoubtedly helped push up the number of top quality games written in GameMaker. Before YoYo’s first competition was launched back in November 2007, the only GameMaker-specific contests that had been held were by smaller community or team websites and therefore the prizes on offer were much smaller and the competitions less well publicised. The YoYo Games competitions have been picked up by a number of Indie game sites as well as being promoted heavily on the homepage of their website and on the GMC. These competitions may have drawn in game developers who had not previously used GameMaker but I am not sure to what extent this has been.

Prior to appearing on the scene their were two main unofficial sites dedicated to hosting Game Maker creations (GameMakerGames and The Games Showcase). With the release of GameMaker 7 it is clear that YoYo Games aimed to create a single distribution platform, YoYo Games, which would generate revenue for the company. This official games host was able to quickly establish its presence by the rather controversial importation of games from The Games Showcase and the YoYo Games branded GameMaker 7 which included links to the website.

GameMaker 7 features YoYo Games branding

Video: Remove the YoYo Games logo from GameMaker 7

But simply providing a single main place of game distribution should have little effect on the quality of games that users are creating. After all Mark Overmars’ old site did have an area featuring a number of top quality games that had been created in GameMaker to demonstrate its capabilities. A key factor that could have influenced the improvement in the quality of GameMaker games is that many users who started using the software in their early teens are now older and have become more experienced. The number of resources, extensions and dlls available, and the sites that catalogue them, has also grown over time expanding the possibilities of GameMaker creations.

The YoYo Games website hosts 20,000 games

YoYo Games have not, so far, delivered the resources that they promised the community and have not released any extensions themselves or the online highscore tables they were planning to implement.

YoYo Games appeared on the GameMaker scene after the software was already well established and had built up a large community of users and sites dedicated to the GameMaker platform.  In conclusion I think there always have been good and bad GameMaker games but YoYo Games makes it easier to find those at the top of the pile.

Have your say :

  • Have the quality of GameMaker games increased?
  • Are YoYo Games responsible?  If not, what factors are?

What do you think?

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  1. i agree with eyas.

    yoyo has given me the abelity to display my games,
    the very possabellity of posting took me from the game skyfighting ( look it up on yoyo as an example of my games before motovation)
    to the game bloxset 3.2 ( look it up to, just go on yoyo and search lafe)

  2. Maybe its the new features such as 32-bit PNG support, etc. But I can’t help but feel YYG has a lot to do with this, the competitions for instance, but it also gives GM more popularity; I mean many of the great games are from users I’ve never heard of. Even if such good games existed before YYG, I guess YYG is helping in making them visible and thus encouraging game developers to work on more games.

  3. I would stay the standard of Game Maker games is definitely increasing, although it might not be because of YoYo Games. Game Maker 6’s 3D engine capabilities certainly contributed.

  4. I agree with Eyas. I mean personally I think Shawn Noel was by far the best game maker creator ever! He was using GM 5-6 for some of his more popular games. So no I think YoYo didn’t help at all.

  5. Still, the quality of Game Maker games has increased greatly. I mean GREATLY. Think about it: the popular gamez of the past that were considered “legendary” were:

    Seilkus, Jetz Rampage, and Jumper

    I believe even the “top100′ on YYG own all these games.

    Not only that, but YYG’s interface has given a chance for excellent games to get the attention they deserve. Look at Ancient Antz Adventure, it has pathetic GMC replies, and so are many popular YYG games dont even _have_ a gmc topic to begin with.

    I find YYG as it as an amazing asset to GM and the GMC. Do I want more: hell yes. But what they’ve done is – in reality- enough.

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