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Behold the aspiring repository for all there is to know about Recreational Software Designs' Game-Maker, the original game creation system for DOS-based PCs. Read of its use, its users, its surrounding culture, and -- of course -- the games themselves!

As of July 12 2014, Game-Maker is now open-source! As a result of the new license it also is free to download and use. If you don't have a copy, go sign up at GitHub. If you have coding experience, consider contributing to the project. What do you want Game-Maker to be?

Where To Begin

This site is pretty big. So, where do you look first? That's easy: start with the games. See our list of full articles. When you're done there, check our large backlog of work-in-progress listings. There even is a list of missing Game-Maker games.

Typically on each game page you can read an overview, plus a game's instructions, storyline, and credits (as available). You can view screenshots, study maps, and download the games themselves.

When you find a game you enjoy, look into its author's broader gameography; both other Game-Maker games and, in many cases, their later design career. You can also browse games by genre or theme, or look through related design tools or sound and image resources.

How To Play

RSD Game-Maker

Game-Maker was created for MS-DOS, a command-line environment that is no longer supported under modern operating systems. The best way to play DOS games is with the aid of DOSBox, a cross-platform virtual machine available on every major operating system from Windows to Mac OS to Linux to Android, and even Sony PlayStation Portable.

DOSBox is highly configurable, which may seem daunting; all you need to know is:

  • For best performance, turn the CPU cycles up to 16,000 (or MAX, in some cases).
  • For superior music, SoundBlaster options: sbpro2 / dualopl2 / compat / 44100.

For new users especially, the easiest way to use DOSBox is with a frontend -- a graphical user interface that remembers your settings and takes care of all of the technical things for you. Just drop in a game's .EXE, tweak the settings, and you're ready to go. Point, click, play.

Join the Community!

Please feel free to contribute. Anything you can add or enhance, however minor, will help to fill in a gap in the narrative about RSD Game-Maker. In updating, do use some common sense and courtesy; this wiki is for everyone, not just you or me. Otherwise, kick around. Break the place in.

Look up in the far-right corner to sign up [currently disabled], and contribute to the knowledge base. You can browse a list of other contributors, including several Game-Maker users past and present, or follow current Game-Maker events on Twitter or Facebook.

If you know of any unlisted games or design materials, we urge you to join or to make contact at one of the above resources, to aid in recording and preserving the materials for future interest.

Current projects

This Wiki is a constant work-in-progress, with any number of cleanup, population, or general improvement missions running concurrently. Here are some of the major focal points as of 1/21/2017:

  • Improvement:
    • Write improved and expanded overviews for the more perfunctory game articles.
    • Write improved bios for all authors.
    • Fill in and improve body text for most categories, "information" articles, and non-game pages.
    • Upload game maps and sprites where they're missing; update corrupted ones.
    • Record, edit, and post improved YouTube videos for all games plagued by incorrect CPU rate.
  • Enhancement:
    • Add "resources" section for all relevant games (to track the borrowing and use of gameware in other projects).
    • Add "soundtrack" section to each game page, focusing particularly on stock track use and naming. Cross-reference everything.
    • Add links to all relevant archive.org Software Library entries
  • Expansion:
    • Fill in all pending articles (mostly, finish the overview sections).
    • Research and make entries for known lost games, and authors of lost games, not represented in archive.
    • Write tutorial on running games in DOSBox.
    • Create new "Advanced Techniques" section, with all of the new terms (Monster Buffering, etc.).
    • Add RSD release notes, official letters, and other documentation where applicable.
    • Finish editing and incorporating text of original Game-Maker manual.
  • Technical:
    • Add further MediaWiki plugins and templates: contact form; navframes and collapsible tables; improved quoting and game box.
      • Install ParserFunctions extension, to enable conditionals...
    • Update secondary wiki themes to fix layout problems.
    • Switch out jDOSBox for EM-DOSBox (as used on archive.org), to account for the great NPAPI purge.
    • Fix database glitch with new account creation.

If you want to help with any of these improvement goals, please feel free to chip in.

Credits

The Game-Maker Archive is not for profit; just for promulgation.

Game-Maker was developed and published by Recreational Software Designs. To contact lead programmer G. Andrew Stone, visit his blog: Effluvia of a Scattered Mind.

This site is an independent project, unaffiliated with Recreational Software Designs. To contact the administrator, please email RSDGM at this domain.

Thank you for visiting, and have fun!


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