Yes, I know, the best way to make an indie game is to learn to code. I've got some scripting experience, but I want to do worldbuilding with already-existing tools (and communities surrounding those tools), and I've been really impressed with games like An Untitled Story that were made with pre-packaged toolsets at their core, like Game Maker. :)
So I'm planning to make my game using either Game Maker or something like it.
The basic parameters of my planned game:
-2D platformer. -Physics/speed akin to Sonic the Hedgehog. -Large, non-linear world, flowing as seamlessly as possible -- think Super Metroid, but without the forced screen transitions.
The first two points have me leaning toward Game Maker -- Plenty of 2D platformers have been made with it, and there are serviceable, openly available Sonic-the-Hedgehog-style physics engines for it that could be adapted to my needs with minimal muss and fuss.
But the third makes me antsy -- from what limited information I hear, Game Maker has problems with large levels/boards/screens/whateveryoucallthem, thus necessitating transitions between screens.
I want to avoid that if at all possible -- it would, I believe, fundamentally alter the flow of the game. I understand that generally speaking, the more you have loaded into memory the more things are going to chug (especially for a one-size-fits-all game development platform that isn't a model of efficient coding), but I'm hoping there are systems that can un-load objects that are sufficiently far offscreen and thus better produce seamlessness.
Any thoughts, people? :) The sooner I can get a basic pre-fab physics engine and world-building program up and running, the sooner I can start prototyping areas and generally tooling around. Should I be looking at Game Maker, or elsewhere?
(My current plan is to more-or-less build the game prototype-style, then worry about art and sound at the very end once the damn thing is playable.)
To ultifinitus: I might pick up C# for a separate project.
I'm familiar with game dynamics and game design from past projects (Projects that used OOP scripting languages).
The amount of work I'm willing to put into my project is directly proportional to what I can do with what's already out there.
This is where a system like Game Maker appeals to me. :) I've then got the level editor, the physics, etc. all more-or-less taken care of, and the software has a giant enthusiast community that provides various modules, advice, etc.
If I can get most of my game done that way, then once I've got a functional prototype I can happily shell out the cash to pay artists to make the game actually look like something worth a damn.
This is why I'm looking for something like Game Maker. I'm just wondering if Game Maker (or another such system) is the most suitable for what I want to do.