Adventure Forums - View Single Post - So, are you prejudiced? (Free game engine popularity)
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Old 07-09-2007, 09:19 PM   #26
TheTwelve's Avatar
Join Date: Sep 2004
Posts: 89

You're right, the semantics of that statement were grey. I didn't actually mean to say that a literal monopoly would be a good thing, and I'm definitely not someone to whom you need to extol the virtues of innovation. As Brisk Nap has said, there is no monopoly. I was simply trying to make light of his comment. I intended that statement to mean that you can't really complain about getting free games made by developers who are receiving no compensation, no matter what engine they use. If the developers are looking for something beyond what AGS can do, they'll go find it.

I guarantee that the majority of the AGS games that come out are more limited by the time and ability of the creator(s) than the strength of the engine. If those developers had gone with a different adventure game creation tool, they would have ended up with a fundamentally identical game with a few differences due to each engine's quirks. A crappy AGS game would have likely been just as crappy in another engine. A great AGS game would have likely been just as great in another engine. It's the artist, not the tool, that makes a game great.

Competition or no, (and even if there were competition, the maker of AGS isn't getting any sort of financial compensation for his efforts, not even donations, so would he care?) the AGS engine is constantly being worked on and has frequent version updates with new features. The next long-in-development update is a complete overhaul of the editor's interface.

The one thing that I really think AGS could use is hardware acceleration. My current project is 320x240 (again, for reasons of time and resources, not engine limitation) but if I make a higher-res game next, as my previous two games were, I'll probably move to another engine. My last game, Linus, tends to bog down on slower computers thanks to the multiple transparency effects on the screen at once -- something WME's hardware acceleration, in hindsight, would likely have taken care of. I've used WME and find it capable, but a little more complicated to use than AGS. I'm also considering Torque after I finish my current game.

I can't understand the anti-AGS feelings that I'm seeing in this thread. It's popular because it's simple to use and has an active community that's willing to help as long as you read the forum rules and are polite, and I'm not sure how that's bad.

I think that there are some AGS users or players who will play a new AGS game just because it's AGS, and fine, whatever. At worst, they're wasting their own time on some crappy games. But I don't think that there is anyone who will actually avoid playing a free game because it was made in another engine.

I, for example, didn't play The Five Magical Amulets, a very well reviewed. But the reason I didn't play it was not because it wasn't made in AGS. I didn't play it because I'm generally not attracted to fantasy tales or settings. I didn't play any of the Apprentice series either for the same reason, even though it's one of the most popular series ever made with AGS.

And let's not forget that beyond the handful of people who have their finger on the pulse of the underground scene, the average player most likely has no idea what engine the game he's playing was made in. He's just excited to get a new game for free. And so am I. And so should you be.
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