How can I develop iPhone app store games quickly for free? Part 1

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I’ve been asked by several visitors to my videos as to how one can develop games quickly on the iPhone, and I understand that learning OpenGL ES and building your own game from scratch can be a daunting task.

Then when I respond talking about some of the commercial frameworks out there that cost $500 a seat per developer, the next question of course is there anything that can do it for free.

In all honesty you won’t find anything at the level of say, iTorque for free. However, there are some good free frameworks out there.

In my opinion the easiest free framework is Cocoas2D. This is an excellent open source framework for creating 2D (yes, sorry just 2D) games. In my opinion this is probably the best starting point for someone who is fairly new to game development on the iPhone and just wants to jump right in without having to worry about learning OpenGL, or even having to learn any of the finer points of iPhone development. You will need an understanding of Objective-C however as the documentation is somewhat minimal you will be learning how to do things mainly from the given examples. What I’ve found Cocoas2D great for is as a means to learning OpenGL ES, I was able to see from looking at the source code how to translate several OpenGL tutorials, and quickly learned how to do what I needed.

Some of the games created with Cocoas2D can be found here . You’d be surprised with how many games in the app store were created using this framework.

That’s all for today, check back tommorow when I get into a couple of free 3D engines for iPhone game development.


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Leave a Reply

  1. If you have a few bucks, I would recommend Unity3d.

    http://unity3d.com/

    I have the trial right now and I’m considering buying it. It seems amazing so far, but you need to be willing to dish out $600 for ide/sdk license + iphone specifically license.

    I’ve yet to look into iTorque, but I will probably do that now, same with Cocoas2d.

    • Yeah, the Unity Engine is probably the most popular one. The game editor is terrific, I have not had a chance to try the iPhone version. Is there a trial for the iPhone version? can’t find it on their site.

  2. If you have a few bucks, I would recommend Unity3d.

    http://unity3d.com/

    I have the trial right now and I’m considering buying it. It seems amazing so far, but you need to be willing to dish out $600 for ide/sdk license + iphone specifically license.

    I’ve yet to look into iTorque, but I will probably do that now, same with Cocoas2d.

    • Yeah, the Unity Engine is probably the most popular one. The game editor is terrific, I have not had a chance to try the iPhone version. Is there a trial for the iPhone version? can’t find it on their site.

  3. No, there’s not a trial for the iPhone version. But what I understand is that it is pretty much the same as the normal version, but it just has the ability to build to the iPhone. Obviously, it cannot be the exact same because of the input and such, but I think it will be very similar.

    • Yeah, would love to see the apps running on the Iphone..interesting to know how they handled shaders. It seems to be an excellent tool for developing quality games.

  4. No, there’s not a trial for the iPhone version. But what I understand is that it is pretty much the same as the normal version, but it just has the ability to build to the iPhone. Obviously, it cannot be the exact same because of the input and such, but I think it will be very similar.

    • Yeah, would love to see the apps running on the Iphone..interesting to know how they handled shaders. It seems to be an excellent tool for developing quality games.