Game Blocks offers free, open-source game creation for novices

Sheldon Pacotti, writer of the original Deus Ex games and indie developer in his own right, created Game Blocks, an open-source library for making games, for the students in his video game writing course at the University of Texas. Game Blocks is designed to help novice developers craft their stories, animations and physics effects with a simple, snap-to interface, as demonstrated above.

Game Blocks is able to compile platformers, adventure games, simulation games and arcade shooters for PC and Mac, and makes it easy to organize dialogue and story. Best of all, it's completely free. Anyone interested in messing around with game design or interactive storytelling, download Game Blocks directly from Pacotti's New Life Interactive.
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Game Blocks Library Released

The open-source Game Blocks library marks its first public release today. The library allows first-time game developers to quickly create games in the BYOB visual programming environment.

Created by game developer and writer Sheldon Pacotti, for a course at the University of Texas' Radio-Television-Film program entitled "Writing and Narrative Design for Video Games," the Game Blocks enable first-time developers to build nonlinear interactions and narratives with minimal effort. Game logic is created with color-coded Lego-like "blocks" derived from Scratch, a free software program from MIT designed for teaching programming to young or non-technical audiences.

Features include:

* simple blocks for common game functions: movement, inventory, dialogue, cut scenes, cartoon animation, level transitions, physics.

* example programs for common game types: platformer, 2D adventure, point-and-click adventure, arcade shooter, and simulation.

* Over four hours of online video tutorials, covering the entire system of blocks and game-specific applications.

The library is being hosted by New Life Interactive, LLC:

This article was originally published on Joystiq.