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About the Author

Copyright ©2000-2005 Benjamin Marty
Distributed under the GNU General Public License


Screenshot Collage
Screenshot Collage

The Scrolling Game Development Kit ("GameDev") is a free open source tool for 2-D game development. It is designed for the Windows 9x/DirectX platform, and targeted at people spanning a range of skill levels. It can be used by the beginner to become familiar with the structure of computer games and to create complete games that don't require any coding. It also has applications for the experienced developer who perhaps simply wants to use the program to draw the graphics or define maps. And in the middle there's applications for creating a game and controlling it through scripting.

GameDev features a graphics editor with smoothing and anti-aliased rotation abilities. The graphics editor is used to edit graphics for tiles and sprites. GameDev has a tile matching editor which allows you to define how tiles fit together, which makes drawing coherent maps much easier. The map editor has a built in maze generator which can create mazes based on tile matching definitions or on a single tile against the background. It supports scripting which allows you to customize how the map and graphics editors work, even without recompiling the program. Scripting can also be used at game runtime to control details of the gameplay. Paths can be defined in the map editor, and various types of sprites can be defined based on the graphics and the paths contained in the project. Animated tiles are also supported. There's much more than this to GameDev; for detailed information, see the documentation.

Requirements: DirectX 5.0 or later. Video card supporting mode 640x480 in 16-bit, 24-bit or 32-bit color. Sound card supported by Windows Media Player (GameDev uses DirectShow/ActiveMovie). The Scrolling Game Development Kit has been verified to function under Windows 95, Windows 98, Windows 2000, Windows ME, Windows XP, and to some extent, Windows XP 64-bit.
Note: The Scrolling Game development Kit Tileset Editor appears not to work on some ATI Video cards. If you can confirm or refute this claim, or have ideas on fixing it, please let us know in the forums or via email. It seems to be related to capturing and outputing bits to a bitmap.


Janyary 21, 2007

Scrolling Game Development Kit 2 Alpha Released. For anyone who may still be unaware, SGDK2 has been in the works for the past couple years, and I finally released an alpha (test) version of it yesterday. With SGDK2 being my primary project these days, don't expect too much news on this site any more. Head over to the Scrolling Game Development Kit 2 homepage.

June 15, 2006

GameDev on Shelves at Best Buy. I was browsing the software section of Best Buy with my brother when something caught his eye and surprised us both. It was the "IG: Independent Games" software package in which GameDev was published last year (along with some other cool independent games). Maybe your local Best Buy is carrying it too? I see it's also on their web site. I'm not sure how long it'll be there, at least for the moment, I can link to it.

December 13, 2005

Forums fixed. Pr0c returned from his trip and renewed the domain. The forums are once again accessible via the domain.

December 8, 2005

Forums unavailable. The domain appears to have disappeared. This is where the forums are hosted. Until I determine what is going on I would encourage anyone wishing to discuss the current state of things to use the older forums at EZBoard. Hopefully this situation is temporary.

Forum update: I discovered that the server is still running at its old IP address. I think the domain name is just in the process of expiring. However, it appears that you can access the forums via, strangely enough. That will be the temporary solution until we figure out what's going on and get it fixed, I guess.

June 12, 2005

Version 1.4.6 Released. A few minor bugs have collected over the past year or so that I figured would be worthwhile fixing since progress on GameDev 2.0 has been so slow with other things going on. So I'm releasing this version to keep up interest and support of the kit while I work on 2.0. This release is really just a few bug fixes, and me updating my email address wherever it occurred in the code and documentation. There's also a new function (kind of) available to save pictures from VB script, but fortunately I had planned for such an eventuality without having to change the COM interface. The DoCommand method on the ScriptHost object was finally put to good use. See What's New for details on everything was fixed.

March 14, 2005

New Forums. New forums are now being hosted at The ad-free subscription to EZBoard is about to expire, and I think phpBB on a somewhat more dedicated server (to which I have FTP access) will serve us better. See the announcements section of the new forums for details.

February 21, 2005

Scripting Wizard 1.2.0. The new version of the scripting wizard features a Radar wizard, which helps you create a radar that shows the position of enemy sprites as colored dots. Also included in the archive is a script called EditorAssist.vbs, which will help you while using the full screen map editor by displaying which layer is being edited, and allowing you to easily cycle through the layers and toggle the exclusive display of only the current layer without leaving the editor. Get the new scripting wizard archive here.

February 12, 2005

New Project. It's been quite a while since there was any news to report, but the EZBoard forums have been busy. If you're looking for the latest, you can always head over to the forums to see what's new. The latest is a new game called Haunted Childhood II. Read all about it in the Project Listing. This looks like it could become the longest playing project yet if the author finishes the 25-level full version. Even the 4 level demo is quite a challenge and I haven't been able to play all the way through it in the time I've had available so far.

September 1, 2004

200,000 Hits. The hit counter on this page rolled over to 200,000 at about 11:00 am this morning (Central time). (I refreshed at 11:20 and got 200,001.) It doesn't mean a whole lot, but it's kinda cool to see that roll over.

August 16, 2004

SpriteLib GPL. I received an email from Ari Feldman himself, whose name some of you may recognize as the creator of the famous SpriteLib, a free collection of graphics for use in games. It appears he has an updated version of his library which is now released under the terms of an Open Source license. A link to SpriteLib GPL has been added to the download page.

July 24, 2004

Version 1.4.5 Released. The new version fixes some minor bugs. You can see the details in the Release Notes and download the new package without VB runtime files or with VB runtime files (runtime files not recommended for Windows ME and Windows XP or later). An updated scripting wizard is included in both packages.

July 1, 2004

New Graphics Available. From the creator of the forest graphics comes a completely different library of graphics. This set it simple but clean and complete. It's very bubbly and colorful as you can see from the screenshot. The new Super Happy Fun Land graphics (99 KB) can be downloaded from the Downloads page. Be aware that no project is included with this library, just graphics.

May 14, 2004

Version 1.4.4 Released. The biggest two noteworthy changes are the improvement of error handling, messages and validation and the inclusion of the current version of the scripting wiard instead of one from two years ago. (The scripting wizard was getting lots of new fixes and features which many never saw because it didn't make it into the installer.) For a complete list of what's new / fixed in 1.4.4, see What's New from GameDev's documentation. Note that the download's page now lists (by default) the installer without VB runtime files. I figured it was high time I make that switch because I think the majority of people already have VB runtime files installed now, and I think trying to install them interferes with some people's success on later versions of Windows. If you don't know whether or not you have VB runtime files, look for the file MSVBVM60.dll in your windows system directory (System32 on Windows XP and Windows 2000). And make sure you have the ability to see system files turned on or you won't see it.

People Like GameDev, Google Says. Try this. Go to Google and type in Scrolling. Then hit "I'm feeling lucky". As of today you'll end up right back here!

March 6, 2004

New Graphics Library. Don't miss out on a great new graphics library from "Pax" (Jeff C). Jeff has developed some great graphics specifically for the Scrolling Game Development Kit. They are the best GameDev graphics yet and I look forward to whatever future contributions Jeff may have to the project. Right now, the new graphics library is available as part of a demo project listed in the projects listing. But the intent is for people to use the graphics in their own projects, so please, make use of them (see the included readme for information and license/distribution information).

January 17, 2004

Version 1.4.3 Released. Was this the proverbial "Last Bug"? Only time will tell, but there was only one thing... OK two things to fix in this update. One was removing Quartz.dll from the main GameDev installation and the install packager. The other was a typo on the Player Settings screen. In the process of updating the install packager, I also upgraded it to use (and require) the latest version of NSIS (version 2.0). This version has a fancy new modern UI so all your GameDev project installers can look extra-professional now. Of course it requires that you have NSIS version 2.0, which hasn't officially been released yet, but the scripts also work with the currently available "2.0 Release Candidate 2" of NSIS. NOTE: If you have installed version 1.4.2 and are experiencing errors concerning quartz.dll (if the installation process had an error while trying to install that file and now you can't use any GameDev project that uses multimedia clips) you should know that installing version 1.4.2 will not fix the problem. To fix the problem, you have to do one of 3 things:

  1. Upgrade to DirectX 9.0 or later
  2. Delete your existing quartz.dll from your Windows System32 directory and re-install your current version of DirectX.
  3. You might be able to fix the problem by just copying an older version of Quartz.dll over your currently installed version. The file at has worked for a few people.

Anyway, if you want the latest version so you can use the latest Install Packager, or just want to read the details of this release, visit the download page or the Release Notes page.

October 11, 2003

Version 1.4.2 Released. Just bug fixes were performed in this release. Some issues with error handling, sprite motion, and sprite solidity definition were dealt with. Get the latest from the Downloads page. For a complete list of changes see the What's New page from the online documentation.

July 26, 2003

Version 1.4.1 Released. Some minor improvements and bug fixes were necessary and are available in the latest release, which is currently available on the Downloads page. For a complete list of changes see the What's New page from the online documentation.

June 22, 2003

New Scripting Wizard. Version 1.1.0 of the scripting wizard makes it easy to record sequences of moves to play back later. This can be a great way to make demos and cut scenes or simply demonstrate how to play your game all the way through. Similar code was used to generate the playback script for Rolly the Purple Ball, which plays Rolly all the way through to the end. Now you too can easily generate these scripts (if you didn't know about the old VBS method of recording playback scripts). The new version also allows you to load GDP files so you no longer have to export to XML before using the scripting wizard. Thanks to my younger brother Seth for conceiving of the Record and Playback idea for the scripting wizard and even handling most of the implementation.

May 21, 2003

Rolly and Ethereal Peace published on CD

Two games published. Ethereal Peace and Rolly the Purple Ball have been published on Activision Value's 2003 Game Pack of the Year CD. I received my complimentary copy today. Click on the image at the right for more detailed scans of the packaging if you want to look for it at your local software retailer.

April 26, 2003

Version 1.4.0 Released. The day has finally come. Version 1.4.0 of the Scrolling Game Development Kit has finally been released and is currently available on the Downloads page. For a complete list of changes see the What's New page from the online documentation.

New Projects Listing. A big thanks to aftermath for implementing a new project listing system for me that supports user ratings and comments as well as sorting capability, paging and more! Check it out at the new look and features at the Projects Listing.

March 30, 2003

New pop-up-free forums. I want the features of ezboard and the pop-up-free nature of the SourceForge forums, how about you? But for this to happen we need at least 5 people to go and speak up for the desire to have these forums created, or it won't happen. So speak up here and indicate your interest in having new Scrolling Game Development Kit forums on Just add a reply to that message thread saying something like "Count me in for Scrolling Game Development Kit forums on GameHippo". If this works out, I will make the GameHippo forum the primary forum (list it first under Forums and make it the default target for the forums link).

March 20, 2003

GameDev 1.4.0 Open for Comments. All the features planned for version 1.4.0 are in, but before I even think about releasing this, I'm inviting any final comments, questions or suggestions about the new version to give you one final chance to get your requests addressed in this latest version. Take a look at the list of changes and then make your voice heard by emailing me or posting in one of the forums.

March 9, 2003

100,000 hits. Yesterday morning the hit counter at the bottom of this page was less than 100 away from hitting the 100,000 mark. This morning, it is at 100,089. So we've crossed the 100,000 hit mark on views of the GameDev homepage since its opening in September of 2000. Some of you might be interested to take a look at the old news page for a review of the history that has led up to this point.

February 9, 2003

Nederlandse Vertaling / Dutch Translation. Are you interested in seeing GameDev translated into Dutch? Voice your opinion in the poll! Ben je geintereseerd om gamdev in het nederlands te zien? Laat dan wat van je horen in de poll!

January 11, 2003

New Graphics Library. There is finally a significant collection of graphics that I have managed to pull together from a few GameDev authors (myself included) to form the first real graphics library. Take your pick of tiles and sprites and whatever from this archive of graphics to make your own project. No more tedious graphic design if you just want to create a simple quickie game!

January 1, 2003

Games now hosted in separate SourceForge project. With the new year comes some long awaited catch-up work on the Scrolling Game Development Kit site. In addition to the projects posted yesterday, we now have a whole new SourceForge project in which to host GameDev games. This means you will be able to individually track downloads of the separate projects, and the downloads will probably work better for international users too (I think project files are mirrored better than web files?). Take a look at the new project at Note that all the links to the Projects page now link to instead of Any remaining old links will just provide a simple redirection link. The new projects page links to actual SourceForge release files instead of web files. And the sidebar menu for that page is slightly different to allow access to both the gamedevprj project and the gamedev project.

The other new long awaited feature is a minor adjustment to the side-bar navigaton menu. You'll now see that the discussion forum link allows you to also directly jump to the forums you want.

Older news


Thanks to Seth Marty for feedback during alpha testing.

Thanks to David Royer for recommending open source and, and for help with interpretation of the General Public License.

Thanks to Nathan Shores for hand-drawn images of a wizard to scan and use for the sample game, and for the narration in the sample game.

Thanks to Michael Miller for contributing a set of castle graphics.

Thanks to Kevin Gadd for suggesting NSIS as the installer to be used for the EXE-Install-Packager (and for suggesting the word "Engine" as the one externally creatable COM object way back when). Thanks to "TigerForce" for finally pushing me in the right direction to research and develop the packager, and for testing my solution. Also thanks to the makers of NSIS for making this little wonder, and making it GPL!

Thanks to Mark Ribau for performing some serious script testing, reporting bugs in the scripting wizard, and providing other helpful suggestions for GameDev enhancement.

Thanks to aftermath for designing and developing the new project listing with paging, user comments, user ratings and sorting features!

Thanks to "Pax" (Jeff C) for his wonderful graphics contributed to the project, first seen in the projects listing in early 2004.


Title image created with The GIMP

Benjamin Marty /

Last Updated June 12, 2005

Keywords: Scrolling Game 2D Engine SDK Free Freeware GPL Package Kit Software Scroller Sidescroller Side-Scroller Side-scrolling Sidescrolling Platform Jump-and-run Jump and Run Game Maker Game Creator