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I've recently downloaded Game Maker studio for free and made my first game. Now, I'd like to share it with others.

I tried to use the "Export" button and it only creates a duplicate project. If I click the "Create executable" button, it says "Packages cannot be built for the selected platform" in an error box.

I looked up how to make a .exe file and how to create an application, but the "Create application" button from the file directory doesn't exist in my version of Game Maker Studio 2. Some said that the error message when creating a .exe file is caused by a UWP license issue, but I don't know what a UWP license is or how to change it.

So, how do I create a sharable game file that isn't a project file? And, if the "Create executable" button is the only way, why can't packages be built for my "platform"?

My IDE is v2.3.4.580 and my runtime is v2.3.4.442.

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  • \$\begingroup\$ UWP usually refers to "Universal Windows Platform". Are you running on Windows and building for Windows? If so, what version? \$\endgroup\$
    – DMGregory
    Sep 12, 2021 at 3:30
  • \$\begingroup\$ im running windows 10, and building for that. also, I've been looking around some more, and some versions of game maker seem to have the target icon in the corner that allows you to change the "platform", many people have windows, macos, ubuntu, etc, but mine is only "test", I think that my be my problem, but idk how to change that. \$\endgroup\$
    – Spring
    Sep 12, 2021 at 4:43

1 Answer 1

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Your current problem with creating executables is due to the licence you're using, not (necessarily) the UWP export configuration.

The Free license for GameMaker Studio 2 gives you full access to the IDE (i.e. usage and assets limitations were removed) and lets you use the application for testing and learning purposes. You can't build game executables and share them with other people though.

This is the Free license description from the YoYo Games website:

Free

GameMaker Studio 2
Unlimited access to the IDE (integrated development environment) and learning materials.

When you export a project, GMS2 creates an exact copy of the project–which includes ALL assets, configuration files and local settings–in a directory of choice. This way, you can 'clone' a game project without the need to manually browse and copy/paste all files, some of which may be unnecessary (e.g. IDE temp files).

If you want to share the game with fellow developers, the above is the way to go. But, if you want to release the game for others to play, that's a different matter. You will need an Indie or Enterprise licence, for they include what they call Desktop/Web/Mobile 'exports' but are actually platform-specific build plug-ins.

According to the YoYo Games website, the cheapest license you can get is:

Indie

GameMaker Studio 2
Unlimited access to the IDE (integrated development environment) and learning materials.
Desktop Exports
Windows, macOS, and Linux platforms exports.
Web Export
HTML5 platform export.
Mobile Exports
iOS, Android, Amazon Fire, Android TV, and tvOS platforms exports.
UWP Export
Universal Windows Platform (includes Xbox One Creators program) exports.

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  • \$\begingroup\$ ahh thank you, this makes perfect sense and answers my question! well, I'm glad I know that now! would you happen to know a similar alternative game engine, same skill level, with free release options? thank you!! \$\endgroup\$
    – Spring
    Sep 13, 2021 at 0:59
  • \$\begingroup\$ If the DnD system is a must for you, you can check out Stencyl or Construct. They provide visual-driven scripting tools for programming a game from scratch. Unfortunately, they all have paid subscription plans for various audiences. On the other hand, different dev programs let you publish your game on desktop, mobile, and web; they don't provide a DnD interface though, and require you have some base knowledge about actual programming/scripting. \$\endgroup\$
    – liggiorgio
    Sep 13, 2021 at 13:50
  • \$\begingroup\$ As a different solution, you may search for previous GMS versions (such as GameMaker Studio 1) on the Internet. Official support for them is discontinued, and devs are recommended to upgrade to the latest versions; however, these may be still working and even including some of the paid features you're looking for. \$\endgroup\$
    – liggiorgio
    Sep 13, 2021 at 13:54
  • \$\begingroup\$ wow- could an old version possibly render my existing game (make with gamemaker 2) as a sharable game? \$\endgroup\$
    – Spring
    Sep 14, 2021 at 7:59
  • \$\begingroup\$ New projects cannot be opened with previous versions of the tool, you must code it once again. But, most functions are still the same, so it's more about copy-pasting scripts and reimporting assets, with only minor changes to be dealt with manually. \$\endgroup\$
    – liggiorgio
    Sep 14, 2021 at 12:14

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