GameMaker 2024 Roadmap: Exciting New Features on the Horizon

GameMaker is gearing up for a game-changing year in 2024, with a slew of new features set to revolutionize how developers create and customize their projects. If you thought 2023 was a big year with its impressive increase in user base and new licensing model, then hold onto your keyboards because 2024 promises even more innovations.

First-Class JavaScript Support: A Game Changer

One of the most significant updates coming to GameMaker is the introduction of first-class JavaScript support. This addition is poised to attract a broader audience, particularly those already familiar with JavaScript and looking to venture into game development. With a wealth of existing tutorials and resources available for JavaScript, this move makes GameMaker more accessible than ever. Now, scripting and event handling in your projects can be done directly in JavaScript, bringing flexibility and power to your game development process.

The New Code Editor

GameMaker New Code Editor screenshot

GameMaker's new full-screen Code Editor, currently in beta, is another highly anticipated feature. This revamped editor provides a comprehensive and immersive coding experience. It supports the Language Server Protocol (LSP), enabling code completion, syntax highlighting, and error reporting for various languages like GML, shaders, JSON, and XML. The LSP support also means GML files can be edited in any compatible IDE, broadening the horizons for customization and integration.

With features like a minimap with hover preview, sticky headers, hotkey chords, and improved support for right-to-left languages and ligatures, this editor is designed to enhance productivity and streamline the coding process. Markdown support within the IDE allows for well-formatted notes and documentation, making project management more efficient.

Plugin Support

Plugin support is set to open a new frontier in GameMaker, allowing developers to create and integrate custom tools directly into the IDE. This feature has the potential to foster a vibrant community-driven ecosystem of plugins that can enhance and extend the editor's functionality. Official tools like the Sequence Editor and the new Code Editor are already leveraging this system, and soon, you will be able to craft your own plugins to tailor GameMaker to your unique needs.


GameMaker Prefabs drawer screenshot

Prefabs are another game-changing feature on the horizon. These allow developers to create assets in one GameMaker project and reuse them across multiple projects. Linked to their source projects, prefabs ensure that updates to the original asset are reflected wherever the prefab is used. This functionality is perfect for creating shareable code or assets, like a platformer player object, that can be updated universally. Delivered through the Package Manager, prefabs make asset management and reuse incredibly efficient.

GUI Tools and Flex Panels

GameMaker's upcoming GUI tools promise to simplify the creation and management of user interfaces. Based on Flex Panels, the new UI system will allow for responsive design and easy positioning of UI elements within the Room Editor. Shared UI layers that can be applied across different rooms will streamline the design process, ensuring consistency and saving time. Additionally, official prefabs for common UI elements like buttons, sliders, and checkboxes will be available, enhancing your toolkit for building polished interfaces.

Looking Ahead

These are just a few highlights from the extensive list of updates and features planned for GameMaker in 2024. The team is also exploring support for other languages like C#, and continuing to engage with the community through events and the GameMaker Awards. With these exciting developments, GameMaker is set to empower developers more than ever before. Stay tuned for more updates and get ready to take your game development to the next level!

Happy GameMaking!

For more details on GameMaker's upcoming features, visit the official GameMaker blog.

First published May 16, 2024