All Posts By

Tiana Crump

'Make Isometric Games'

How to Make Isometric Games

By | Buildbox Tutorials, Game Business Blog | 4 Comments

In our new ‘How to make isometric games’ video series, you’ll learn how to build your own 2.5D style game with Buildbox. You don’t need to create 3D graphics, and in fact, you won’t need any game art at all. We’re going to show you step-by-step how to start from the beginning.  You’ll see how to create isometric game art from scratch using free vector graphics tools available online.

In this series, led by instructor Heath Close (a professional game developer and co-founder of MindCarve Studios), we’ll make a simple 2.5d jumper game using the ISO Jump preset in Buildbox.

There’s no prior coding, design, or technical skills required for this course. All you need is Buildbox. ;)

This course, called ‘How to Make 2D Isometric Games’,  is broken down into three in-depth tutorials covering:

  • What is Isometric Art?
  • How to Make Your Own Isometric Game Art and the Tools to Use?
  • How to Make an Isometric Game in Buildbox?

Ready to get started?

Building Isometric Games in Buildbox

Part 1 – What Is Isometric Art?

In the first video of this 3-part tutorial series, led by instructor, Heath Close, you’ll learn all about isometrics, how they’re created and why developers use them in games. You’ll then learn where the word comes from, its origins and some interesting terminology commonly used when working with isometric art.

There’s also a few fun facts included in the lesson, just for those trivia buffs out there.

In this tutorial, we’ll also closely examine what makes an image isometric. You’ll learn the most common angle measurements necessary to create them. Plus, you’ll gain an overall better understanding of isometrics and how they’re used:


Part 2 – How Do I Make Isometric Art?

In the second video of our Building Isometric Games series, you’ll learn step-by-step how to make your own isometric game art. We’ll also take a look at two different program options for making isometric art, discuss their features, and walk you through a complete isometric game art tutorial.

The first tool is the free open source 2D vector graphics program called Inkscape. Since it’s completely free to use, the lesson will primarily be focused on Inkscape. The program is available for Windows, Mac OSX and Linux.

The second tool is called Hexels 2. It’s a 2D grid-based painting tool for creating game art. Hexel 2 is a paid tool, however, they do have a free 14-day trial available for both Windows & Mac that you can try. This program is slightly more advanced but both are great options for making isometric art.

In this tutorial you’ll learn how to download the programs, setting up your project’s properties and settings. How to use the pen tool, add layers, create a platform for your character to run on and much more:

Part 3 – How Do I Make an Isometric Game in Buildbox?

In the third and final video in our tutorial on Building Isometric Games, you’ll finally learn how to make an isometric game within Buildbox. We’ll walk you through the process of exporting your game art from Inkscape, which we made in the previous video. Then you’ll learn how to use the creator tool to start quickly building out levels in your isometric game.

In this lesson, you’ll learn how to correctly set up your collision shapes, edit animations, get the right scene length, and add advanced character moves and more. And we’ll also reveal some helpful sizing and collision guide tips.

By the end of this tutorial you’ll be able to create your own isometric games like a Pro:


NOTE: If you’re new to using Buildbox be sure to check out the ‘Make Your Own Game’ series also led by instructor, Heath Close. It’s a 10-part video course on making games in Buildbox that we highly recommend for beginners to really learn the ins and outs of the software.

'Buildbox Everything Collection Image'

Over $100,000 In Game Assets For Trying Buildbox?

By | Buildbox Notes | 17 Comments

Is Buildbox really giving away over $100,000 worth of game assets for FREE?

Yes, welcome to the ‘Everything Collection’.  What started as an office banter joke between our CEO, Trey Smith, and our CTO, Nik Rudenko, turned into the biggest promotion ever for Buildbox.

For a limited time, when you try Buildbox you’ll get more than $100,000 worth of game art, sounds, sprites, music, completed games and more for free.

The ‘Everything Collection’ includes literally everything you need to start a successful game business by yourself without any prior coding or technical skills.

The Origin Story:  Gamers First

In case you are new here, Buildbox is a drag and drop game engine that anyone can use to create professional games. It’s the same software used to make hit games like Color Switch, Ball Jump, The Line Zen, Damn Daniel, Bounce, The Pit, The Running Man, Phases, Circulate, Slip Away and many more.

Our company started originally as a mobile game business in 2011 by Trey & Nik.  The gaming division of Buildbox has had 8 games break the Top 25, and now has more than 55,000,000 downloads.  It’s still consistently releasing hit games like The Line Zen, Endless Sky and more.

Introducing the Buildbox ’Everything Collection’

During these last 6 years with the game business, we’ve spent over $100,000 on custom art and sound, and now we have one of the largest asset databases for games. This has put us in a unique situation.  If we’re building a game and need an extra character, we have hundreds to choose from.  If we need a coin sound, we can pick from a database of 300 or more.

We’ve decided to do the unthinkable and give all of this away to anyone who tries Buildbox during this limited promotion.

With the Everything Collection, you’ll get it all.  You’ll have access to thousands of different game art, sprites, backgrounds, sound effects, music, completed games and more.

The Buildbox Everything Promotion Includes:

• Ultimate Art Pack ($62,000 Value)
• Illustrated Art Pack ($12,000 Value)
• The Massive Sound Pack ($15,000 Value)
• Action Games Pack ($10,000 Value)
• Indie Games Pack ($10,000 Value)
• Minimal Games Pack ($5,000 Value)
• Hit Games Pack ($5,000 Value)
• Game Business Course ($2,000 Value)
• Game Publishing Live Course ($2,000 Value)

The Everything Collection

This package has never been for sale at any price, and is only available right now for free.  Here’s what all it includes:

Game Art

The first bonus is called the Ultimate Art Pack (a $62,000 Value). We picked the best art from our previous games collection for this bonus. It features 23,236 images. It’s literally all the art you need to kick start a serious game business.

The second bonus is the Illustrated Art Pack (a $12,000 Value). All of this art is complete, animated when needed, and ready to go inside of Buildbox or really any software. It includes 4,659 images.

Sound Effects & Music

We have a very large library of custom game music and sounds that’s also part of the collection. There are thousands of click noises, jump sounds, coin noises, user interface sounds and background music.

You’ll get access to all of this for free in the third bonus called The Massive Sound Pack (a $15,000 Value). The sound pack consists of 5,230 sounds and features a wide variety of high-quality game music ranging from Classical to Dubstep.

Completed Games & More

There’s also an assortment of completed games included in the Everything Collection. Each completed game comes in a BBDOC format, the save file format for Buildbox. All of the games were created by our internal games team which includes CTO Nik, our artist Dani who made the art for the Top 25 game The Pit, and more. In the Action Games Pack (a $10,000 Value) you’ll get 10 completed games with an action based theme. In the Indie Games Pack (a $10,000 Value) you’ll receive 10 completed platformer / adventure based games, each with a cool indie art style.

The Minimal Games Pack (a $5,000 Value) includes 5 completed games with a minimal style and casual one-touch gameplay. We’re also including the Hit Games Pack (a $5,000 Value) This bonus features multiple mega-hit games we’ve made like our popular game Jump Pack. The original graphics, art and sound are inside each BBDOC file. You can use any of the elements in your own game besides the character and logo. Plus you’ll have over 27,000 game images at your disposal from the other game art bonuses.

The Everything Collection

OK, I know what you’re thinking …

All of that sounds great, but I never made a game before or started a business. I have no idea where to start.

The Everything Collection also includes two different courses with 7 hours of game business training. These in-depth courses are led by Buildbox CEO, Trey Smith, who will walk you through the step-by-step process of running a successful game business.  You’ll learn exactly how he scaled his own business from nothing to 55,000,000 downloads.

The Game Business Course (a $2,000 Value) is a 6-part course compiled of 19 different tutorial videos on how to start, run and grow a game business. You’ll learn how to create top notch games, the launch process, marketing and more.

We’re also including our exclusive access to 4 live hour long videos from our Publishing Live series called Game Publishing Live (a $2,000 Value). This final bonus course covers the seldom discussed topic, how to get your game published. During the course, Smith breaks down the most important parts of the publishing process and reveals some industry secrets for success.

This is our biggest promotion to-date for Buildbox and it will only be available for limited amount of time.

Here’s how it works …

As part of our special promotion when you try Buildbox for $99 you’ll also receive the ‘Everything Collection,’ which includes 8 bonus packages of $123,000 worth of game assets for free.

If you decide for whatever reason it’s not for you, simply cancel via receipt email within 30 days for a full refund. As promised you’ll get to keep all the free images, sound effects, music, completed games, and 7 hours of business training courses.

You can read further details on the ‘Everything Collection’ Buildbox Promotion right here:

The Everything Collection

'Typograhpical image'

Buildbox Game Spotlight: Typographical

By | Buildbox Notes, Showcase Games | 4 Comments

This week’s Buildbox Game Spotlight is Typographical by Nanovation and Coyowl Games.

Typographical is a remarkably beautiful game that feels like an interactive piece of art. Somewhat similar to Ustwo Games’ Monument Valley players enter a stunning world of mazes. Each letter shaped maze is filled with narrow loops, coins, portals, random obstacles and rotating platforms. Players must carefully guide their character to the nearest exit without colliding into any of the maze walls or obstacles.

Although it sounds simple, Typographical is quite challenging. Precision is key in this puzzle arcade game. Attempting to reach coins in tight areas can be deadly. If you’re one centimeter too close to the edge, it’s Game Over!

Alphabet or Numbers Your Choice

There’s two different playable chapters or game worlds featured in Typographical. The first chapter of mazes are based on the letters A-Z in the Alphabet. The maze representing the letter D for example, features a colorful minimalistic image of a dog with the shape of the D embedded in the image.

The second chapter of mazes are based on the numbers 0-9. The graphics in the game are killer. Very artistic. The game also features 17 unlockable characters ranging from white orbs and stars to effervescent snowflakes.

In Typographical there’s no set time limit on completing each maze. This slow pace style of gameplay combined with the soothing harp inspired music brings an almost Zen-like atmosphere to the game. It’s relaxing, fun and challenging. Nailing all three in a game is often hard.  Yet Typographical manages to do so, quite well.

Official Game Trailer for Typographical

You can check out Typographical on iOS right HERE.

Typographical was developed by Coyowl and published by Nanovation Labs. Coyowl is an indie game studio based in London, England. Founded in 2016 by Stylianos Kozadinos. The studio’s first game Bouncy Buddy was a huge success. It was featured by Apple 119 times. Buildbox was used to make both Bouncy Buddy and Typographical.

Typographical is the studio’s second game. It’s already been featured by Apple in Korea and has reached the #1 position in the word/puzzle category.

Typographical Featured by Apple

'Typographical featured by Apple alt image'

Typographical Featured by Apple in Korea


It only took Kozadinos 1.5 months to create the game while also working a full time 9-5 job. Not only is this a great example of what you can make using Buildbox but how anyone can use it in just their spare time to make ‘Apple Feature’ worthy games.

Buildbox is all about empowering everyday people just like Kozadinos to unleash their creativity and pursue their dream of making games. There’s no coding or programming skills required. You can make your own game regardless of your skill level or experience.

Big congrats to both team Nanovation and Coyowl Games on Typographical’s success!

We look forward to seeing even more phenomenal games and successes in the future.

If you’d like your game to be considered for our weekly Spotlight just post a link to it on our forum in the ‘Game Showcase’ section. You can also Tweet it with the hashtag #buildbox on Twitter. We will definitely check it out!

Buildbox 2.2.8

Buildbox 2.2.8 is Now Live

By | Buildbox Notes | 8 Comments

We’re excited to announce the official release of Buildbox 2.2.8.

In this latest Buildbox update we have 3 new gameplay presets: Basketball, Jump Tower and Swipe Board. These new presets allow you to create different sports inspired games and fun action packed titles as well. The sky is literally the only limit here.

Our new Basketball preset enables users to make traditional or non-traditional basketball style themed games. You can use this option to make your own basketball endless arcade games or even a paper toss style game.

It’s also possible to create other unique themed ball games with this preset by using different types of balls, objects or even characters. With Buildbox’s easily integrated counter feature you can make your game as simple or challenging as you wish. The popular wall jumping and tower games, which seem to never go out of style can be made easily using our new Jump Tower preset as well. A great example of the type of game that you can make with this preset is our game called Wall Switch which was published by Ketchapp.

These new presets are a lot of fun to play around with.

Another really innovative gameplay style, that we’re thrilled to be including in this latest update is the Swipe Board preset. With this preset option you can create an interactive dodge type of game. Using Swipe Board you can make dodge avoidance based games with movement similar to Traffic Rush. This gameplay preset enables players to avoid incoming obstacles by swiping in multiple directions.

You can really get imaginative with this preset by adding various themes from cars and bouncing balls to aliens and more.

Each of the gameplay presets included in Buildbox automatically change all of the character settings and physics properties in your game. This advanced setting feature makes it easy to quickly create a prototype of your game.

All of the advertising SDKs have also been updated in this new release including HeyZap, AdMob and Chartboost for iOS. Buildbox 2.2.8 now supports Xcode 8 as well.

We’ve also fixed several notable bugs for smoother functionality.

Buildbox 2.2.8 New Features & Updates:

  • Basketball Preset
  • Jump Tower Preset
  • Swipe Board Preset
  • Updated: HeyZap SDK for Android & iOS to 10.2.0
  • AdMob SDK for iOS to 7.14.0
  • Chartboost for iOS to 6.5.2
  • Updated: Chartboost Android SDK to 6.6.1
  • Updated: Xcode 8 Support

We’ll be updating Buildbox with new exciting gameplay presets on a consistent basis. Our mission is to provide our users with more unique gameplay possibilities than ever before. So stay tuned for future announcements!

Top four buildbox games

Four Buildbox Games in the Top 15

By | Buildbox Notes, Showcase Games | No Comments

Currently four of the top 15 games in the App Store are Buildbox made: JuJu on the Beat #3, Water Bottle Flip Challenge 2 #10, Slip Away #11 and Color Switch #12. And all of these indie games were created with our game maker, which means that 26% of the Top 15 Games were made with Buildbox.

It’s always awesome to see our customers’ games perform so well in the charts.

At the time of this writing, Juju on the Beat by Anonymous Inc. is ranked #3 in the App Store. Based on the popular viral dance challenge, this arcade game has been climbing the charts. It was previously ranked #1 in the US and United Kingdom and ranked #2 in Canada, Sweden, and Australia. The game has managed to reach a top 100 position in over 80 different countries as well.

So what is Juju on the Beat?

Juju on the Beat (TZ Anthem) is a song and popular dance craze, created by two teenagers, Zay Hilfigerrr and Zayion McCall. When the two boys posted a video of themselves performing the song and signature dance it instantly went viral. The video received 17 million views and garnished the attention of celebrities and athletes like Dwayne ‘The Rock’ Johnson, the Philadelphia 76ers, Lebron James, and Gwen Stefani.

The success of the video led to the teens snagging a record deal and appearances on the Ellen Show and Live with Kelly. As seen below:

The arcade game Juju on the Beat created by Anonymous Inc has the instrumental version of the popular song playing in the background. Having the same name and song as the trending dance craze has helped the game to skyrocket up the charts.

Juju on the Beat is available for download on iOS and Google Play.

The Bottle Flip Challenge game by the team at TastyPill Games is also topping the charts. Ranked at #10, this arcade game also centers on a trending pop culture theme. The water bottle flip challenge.

If you’re not familiar with the ‘Water Bottle Flip Challenge’ it was started by a teenager named Mike Senatore who decided to flip a water bottle for his performance in the High School talent show.

Below is the original footage of Mike executing his ‘epic’ water bottle flip:

After the video was posted, it immediately went viral. Millions of people started filming themselves trying to execute Mike’s perfect bottle flip.

The Bottle Flip Challenge & The Games That Followed

Almost similar to what happened with the Flappy Bird phenomenon, the App Store has been flooded with Water Bottle Flip Challenge themed games. However, we’re proud to see … that TastyPill Games’ version which was built using Buildbox has been ranked #7 in the All Games category.

In the Water Bottle Flip Challenge game, players have to try to flip the bottle to the next platform before it begins to rotate. Due to that small change, of adding the rotating platforms, the game is surprisingly challenging.

Bottle Flip Challenge 2 is also available for download on iOS and Google Play.

While it may be hard to emulate Mike Senatore’s epic performance in real life or even in a game. Many indie games based on trending themes like the water bottle flip challenge have been rising on the charts.

Both Juju on the Beat and the Water Bottle Flip Challenge 2 are perfect examples of how you can use Buildbox to quickly turn any trend into a game.

Buildbox gives you the ability to easily create and publish to multiple platforms. The advanced features, placeholders and rapid development possible with our game maker enables anyone to immediately take action on a great idea or popular trend. Quickly turning your awesome idea into a game before anyone else gets the chance, will always give you a major advantage in the App Store.

Juju on the Beat is also a great example of this. It was the first game to be made based on the popular dance craze and it’s holding strong at #3.

Slip Away & Color Switch

Nanovation and Fabmika Games’ Slip Away which was released during the summer, is also still climbing the charts. It’s recent update has pushed the stunning underwater adventure to #11 in the charts.

Color Switch which was made in under a week using our software has reached over 100 million downloads worldwide. Most noteworthy, Color Switch, the #1 addictive game of the year received a recent update also. For the game’s update, the team at Fortafy joined forces with Dead Cool Apps to create a new game mode called ‘Circle.’ It looks amazing. Definitely worth checking out if you haven’t already.

You can download both Slip Away and Color Switch on iOS and Google Play.

You can check out some of the other Buildbox games that are doing well on the charts in our All-Stars section.

SPCR-x Game Dev Spotlight

Game Dev Spotlight: SPCR-x

By | Buildbox Notes, Showcase Games | No Comments

This week’s pick for our game dev spotlight goes to Benfont Limited for their game SPCR-x.

SPCR-X is a sci-fi themed arcade game. The objective is simple: survive the mission and protect your crew! But like most things in life it’s not as easy as it sounds. Players have to quickly maneuver past spikes and dangerous moving objects as they explore the inside of their enemy’s mothership.

There’s also a fire button located on the screen, same as the classic retro arcade shooters from the past. Players have to quickly tap on the fire button to blast away at incoming enemy ships and colliding asteroids. Speed, precision and strategy are crucial in this game. The further you get the harder you get hit.

Whether it’s flying spikes, mysterious projectiles or droves of enemy ships firing in your direction, it’s non-stop action. There’s also laser barriers that you have to shoot in order to break through. SPCR-X is a fun challenging arcade style shooter.

Here’s an exclusive gameplay trailer of this week’s game dev spotlight, SPCR-X in action:


You can check out SPCR-X right HERE.

SPCR-X was developed by Benfont Limited, which is located in the heart of Dublin, Ireland. This indie game dev studio primarily releases games with themes leaning towards the sci-fi, cyberpunk and old school arcade game genre. Benfont Limited is passionate about creating fun games with a funky retro feel. The studio believes that video games are truly art and it definitely shows. Their latest games SPCR-X and Rail Runner both feature cool futuristic themes with stunning graphics.

According to Jonathan Bencomo, lead developer of Benfont Limited, SPCR-X was created in less than a month using our software.

“Thank you for such an amazing piece of software! You have reduced our costs and our times in a very significant way. Also the fact that BB is written in C++ is a HUGE plus,” stated Jonathan Bencomo.

We love to see our customers like the team at Benfont Limited achieve their game dev goals using Buildbox. Our software was designed to make it easy for developers to not only make incredible games but to also make them in a faster more cost-effective way.

If you’d like your game considered for our weekly spotlight just post a link to it on our forum in the ‘Game Showcase’ section or Tweet it with the hashtag #buildbox on Twitter. We will definitely check it out!

Making app icon image

Making Your App Icon

By | Game Business Blog | One Comment

Why is an app icon important?

There are literally millions of apps in the App Store, with the number growing by the thousands each day. The App Store receives about 54,000 app submissions every month, and almost 14,000 of those submissions are games. The App Store is ever expanding, and with an increasing number of competitors, how can you possibly make your app stand out? When it comes to apps, do people really judge by the cover?—or, in the case of apps, the app icon?

Yes. Your app icon is very important because it’s the first thing that people see when they visit the App Store. People don’t normally tap on an app if they don’t like the icon or if gives off the impression that it was poorly made—they’ll just scroll right past it. So you want your app to make a good first impression with its icon. You also want your icon to reflect the quality of your app. If the icon doesn’t look professional or interesting, people will assume that your app isn’t either.

So when making an app icon, you should remember that it needs to be well-made, as well as give an idea of what your game or app is about.

Take the following app icons as examples:

'app icon examples image'

The first two icons (Clone Rush and Color Switch) are more minimalistic in design. Still, they are visually pleasing, and they perfectly reflect the simplicity of the games they represent. The colors in these icons also match the colors within the games, a detail which gives the player a sense of continuity between the icon and the game itself.

Meanwhile, the last two icons (Jump Paths and Parrot) are more detailed. Instead of a simple color matching, the designers of these icons decided to showcase some elements from the game. This design choice works too, but only for certain apps. It actually depends on the genre of your game and on the trends of your specific genre. This is why you should do some research before making an app icon. You have to familiarize yourself to what your competitors are doing, so you can use and improve their approach to your advantage. Here are some more examples, according to genre:

'Farmville Icons Image'

Farm Story, FarmVille 2: Country Escape, and Hay Day are all farm-themed simulation games. As you can see, their icons are cartoonish yet simplistic—the icons only exhibit a single element from the games.

crime based app icons images

Meanwhile, CSI: Crime Scene Investigation, Criminal Case, and Urban Crimes are all mystery adventure games. Their icons exhibit a portrait of one or two of the characters that players will encounter in the game.

Minimalist icon images

Lastly, these minimalist games (Line Zen, Wire Bounce, and TwinsJump) show action or movement in their icons. Most minimalist games have an element of motion in their icons so as to create interest with their simple designs.

From the above pictures, it is clear that each game genre has an icon trend that developers use to attract more people. Once you have recognized the trend, you need to improve on it. Ask yourself these questions:

  • Why are certain games in your chosen genre more successful that others? What did they do right? 

Remember, the success of the game doesn’t rely on the icon alone. Sure, the icon is your gateway to new downloads. But if the game itself is not as good as your competitors’, bad reviews will come in, downloads will be discouraged, and your app will ultimately fail.

  • What are their design cues? What is the trend among the icons of the games in your genre?

Looking back at the examples shown earlier, the design cue in the icons of the farm-themed simulation games come from an element within the games. Meanwhile, the design cue in the icons of the mystery adventure games come from a character that the player will encounter when playing the game. Lastly, the design cue for the minimalist games is motion or action. These design cues are often the trend as well, but you also have to look at how they are presented in the icon. For example, the farm-themed simulation games have cartoonish icons, the mystery adventure games have a more serious tone to them, and the minimalist games stick to the simplistic design of the games they represent.

  • How can you improve on your competitors’ designs?

The best way to improve on your competitors’ designs is to think of ways on how you can apply their approach to your own game. Does your game have a plot? What emotion do you want the players to feel while playing your game? What is the theme of the game? What can players expect from the game? Your answers to these questions should also reflect in your icon, one way or another. Again, the icon must show the identity of your game. What sets your game apart from the rest? Translate that uniqueness into your icon.

iOS Icons vs Android Icons

If you want to sell your game to both Apple and Android devices, you have to know the difference between iOS and Android icons. While iOS doesn’t support transparent backgrounds, this format is acceptable in Android. iOS is also strict with the shape of your app icons. If it isn’t square, iOS will fill the background with black, and this may ruin the whole effect of your design. So if you want to use a non-square icon for Android devices (such as diamond or circle), then you will have to create a separate icon for iOS. Tweak your design so that it fits inside a square icon. Or, to avoid the trouble altogether, just use a square icon for both Android and iOS devices.

Icon generators: How can they help?

Icon generators are great tools to help you imagine a starting point for your design. However, they shouldn’t, in any way whatsoever, be the final icon that you use to represent your app. You should apply the same principles of when you’re looking at your competitors’ icons and using the trend as the foundation of your design. After creating a startup icon using an app icon generator, improve on it by translating the identity of your game or app into the design.

Nonetheless, here are five simple icon generators that you can use to create an initial icon for your app:

X-Icon Editor allows you to create app icons in different sizes. You can choose from four preset sizes: 16 by 16, 24 by 24, 32 by 32, and 64 by 64. Aside from a custom size, you can also change the colors and font depending on what best suits your icon. The X-Icon Editor has a simple interface, so even inexperienced app creators can use it without any problems.

Icons Flow has an array of preset badges from which you can choose from. You can fill each preset with your desired color scheme. You can also add effects on the icon if you like. Change it up a bit with a drop shadow, an inner shadow, or a gloss effect. The presets will make the process a lot easier because you can choose the focus point of your design with just a simple click.

Junior Icon Editor looks a lot like Microsoft’s Paint, but it will still help you create a simple initial design for your icon. If you want to be more creative, you can also adjust the size of the image outside of the restraints of a typical app icon. It has a more pixelized look to it too, so if you’re a bit old school, this is the icon generator for you.

MakeAppIcon has a simple user interface that any app creator of any level of expertise can easily understand and utilize. With this app icon maker, you can also create icons in bulk. If you’re developing multiple apps at once, you’ll have a one-stop shop for your icons with MakeAppIcon.

Android Asset Studio is an Android icon generator that gives you a wide range of options when it comes to the size of your icon. You can create an icon from as small as 12 by 12 to as big as 1024 by 1024. It may have a simple user interface, but the editing options are not limited. You can upload an image, add a text, apply effects, and change the colors of your icon if you like. The Android Asset Studio provides you with different settings that will make your generated icon look professional.

To sum it up…

Here are a few things that you need to remember when creating your app icon:

  • Your app icon must reflect the uniqueness of your game. It must be interesting and visually pleasing.
  • Do not use a generated icon as your final app icon. It can be your foundation. It can also stand as a placeholder while you’re finalizing the details of your true icon. But it should never be the representation of your app. Nothing screams mediocre and unprofessional more than a generated app icon.
  • The best icon generator for your game depends on what you want the icon to look like. Choose from the list given above, or do more research on the subject.
  • The icon will not compensate for a poorly developed game. If you want your app to sell, both icon and game should be well-made.
  • iOS and Android icons have different specifications. iOS doesn’t allow non-square icons and transparent backgrounds. Android, on the other hand, allows these designs.
  • You can use the “model and improve” approach when brainstorming for design ideas: Look at what your competitors are doing, and then improve on it by applying their approach to the overall theme and plot of your own game.
  • Icons have trends for a reason. Your icon has a higher success rate if it follows the trend.
  • When creating an app icon, don’t be afraid to put your own twist and to make your own statement. Again, your game must be unique, and your individuality is important if you want your icon to stand out.
Game Business Guide

The Buildbox Game Business Guide

By | Game Business Blog | 2 Comments

We’re excited to announce the release of The Buildbox Game Business Guide. Written by Buildbox CEO & Founder, Trey Smith, this new guide shares his personal thoughts on game marketing and creating a mobile business from the ground up.

Before developing the game development software, Buildbox, Trey started his own mobile video game company. To-date the company has amassed over 55,000,000 downloads and created many Top 25 games including Jump Pack, Monster Magic, Maze+, Phases, The Line Zen and more.

This guide is designed to help you create a successful game business. From coming up with the app idea to the final stages in the launch process, Trey provides in-depth instructions on exactly what you need to do to succeed.

The Buildbox Game Business Guide

You’ll discover the three main factors for mobile game domination: making a game people want to play, building your app on a budget, and getting the most downloads.

“90% of the people who release apps don’t spend the required amount of time thinking of these aspects before moving forward. Just the fact that you’re reading this guide right now, means you have a far better chance of getting more traction than the competition.” – Buildbox Founder, Trey Smith

The Buildbox Game Business Guide will teach you what it takes to make a good game and the app marketing skills you need for true visibility in the App Store. You’ll get step-by-step instructions on how to get game art, alternative game creation options for every budget and more.

Also included in this guide is a bonus section featuring inside secrets and unique tricks to better monetize your game. You’ll learn 54 of our favorite app tactics and how to use them in your next game. There are also tons of tips and resources to help you gain a competitive edge.

If you want to really excel in the mobile business and take things to the next level this guide is definitely worth a read.

To download The Buildbox Game Business Guide for FREE today, simply click on the button below:


'Jox game'

Buildbox Game Spotlight: Jox

By | Buildbox Notes | No Comments

Every Friday we highlight a Buildbox made game in our special “#indiedev Buildbox #FreeGameFriday spotlight.” This week’s spotlight goes to Swedish Heroes’ Jox.

Jox is an addictive one tap arcade game that really challenges players. Set in a beautiful minimalist style world of floating cubes, the game’s goal is simple. Players have to tap to leap from one cube to the next without falling. Although it appears to be an easy task, the ascending floating cubes serve as both a platform and a deadly obstacle depending on your aim. One centimeter off in a jump and it’s ‘Game Over.’

There’s over 20 challenging levels for players to master. It also features a very cool ambient soundtrack. From the calming music to the floating cubes and bubbles, Jox is a great casual game to play when you want to unwind and relax.

You can check out Jox on iOS.

Since its release, Jox has been featured by Apple in more than 100 countries including United Kingdom, Denmark and Sweden. It reached the Top 10 in the charts in South Korea. The game also ranked Top 100 in Germany and 14 other countries.

Jox was developed by Swedish Heroes and published under Nanovation Labs. Swedish Heroes is a minimalist mobile game studio based in Sweden. Their mission is to launch a new game each month that’s fun and addictive.

Recently, Swedish Heroes has been using our software, Buildbox, to make quality games at a fast pace. We couldn’t be happier.

Congratulations to the team at Swedish Heroes and Nanovation Labs on Jox’s success!

If you’d like your game considered for our weekly spotlight just post a link to it on our forum in the ‘Game Showcase’ section or Tweet it with the hashtag #buildbox on Twitter. We will definitely check it out!

'how to make a game'

How to Make a Game

By | Game Business Blog | 6 Comments

Making a game essentially involves turning one’s imagination into a product that others can enjoy. Unfortunately, many people who have great imaginative ideas are put off doing this by the prospect of complex coding. Buildbox has been developed to help game makers of all backgrounds bypass coding. Of course, there are many different types of games and the potential game maker must first determine whether Buildbox is the right tool to assist them in the creation of their prototype.

Buildbox: Right for You?

Buildbox was tailored for the development of mobile app games with simple, 2D illustrations. It is not appropriate for creating MMORPG games or apps that require a lot of memory. Examples are available under All-Stars and Showcase. All game makers should take a look at these before signing up for the free 30-day trial and downloading Buildbox.

The Game Maker’s Need

Buildbox is the bridge between creativity and a marketable mobile app game prototype. Buildbox’s drag-and-drop interface is as intuitive as a user interface gets on a game creation platform. Even experienced programmers will find it remarkably convenient.

Pre-Buildbox: Creating the Game

Creativity in terms of the game itself involves a skill-set and a mindset outside software development.  The idea needs to be explored and then analyzed for both its playability and its enjoyability. For originality, the game should be compared to others of similar design and gameplay. Playing existing games by others also helps clarify whether an idea will yield a successful game.

The design stage involves a checklist of requirements that involves knowledge of aesthetics and psychology. For new game makers, here are some of the common attributes of the successful mobile games.

A good mobile game is:

  1. Intuitive. Mobile app games, like any other feature in any mobile device, need to have an intuitively-designed user interface. Features or functions that are not self-explanatory on initial contact might encourage the user to delete your app and give another game maker the opportunity to enthrall them.
  2. Challenging. Gameplay, genre, and story must synergize to serve the overall purpose of the game. Gameplay has to be engaging and evolve with the player’s progress. The goal is to keep the player interested despite the limits intrinsic to a mobile game. A good algorithm for challenging the user can contribute to the game’s addictiveness—which is a highly desirable quality.
  3. Socially engaging. Mobile app games should be shareable with other players. Games are an easy topic to open conversations, and users intuitively seek games that are fun to talk about and share.
  4. Aesthetically pleasing. Successful games are usually beautiful. Successful and memorable designs tend to be simple, yet cleverly colored and defined to provide an edge over competitors’ games. There is a reason why candies and fruits are so popular: they are simple, colorful, fun, and easily recognizable. There are so many ways to use them in different designs! Nobody wants to stare at messy, convoluted graphics. Keeping things simple and recognizable helps to keep the user interface intuitive.
  5. Original. While it’s possible to borrow themes and art from brands and independent artists and authors, the gameplay and other factors about the design should instantly display the kind of originality that can serve to identify your work in future. The decision is sometimes subjective; borrowing does happen. Copyrights need to be considered, and if a game is clearly derivative, the company responsible for the original should be contacted for discussion.

Once the mental sketch is done, the game maker can use Buildbox to let their product materialize and make changes where necessary. The tutorials in Make Your Own Game series can help with all technicalities of bringing the game maker’s concept online.

Testing the Prototype

Like any marketable product, a finished game should be thoroughly tested. The game maker should invite family, friends, colleagues, and acquaintances to closed beta testing to help decide their game’s marketability. The game maker should also continuously test changes that have been made due to constructive feedback.

Post-Buildbox: More Help

When the game maker feels confident about the game’s playability and enjoyability, they can use Buildbox’s checklist to begin finalizing the game for publication.

One can also approach experts on LinkedIn or Quora for more help with the creative process. Both of these require user registration. There are many developers on these sites who are generous with both advice and answering questions. LinkedIn is a respected online network for professionals and a worthwhile platform to meet experts with credentials. As game makers come from diverse backgrounds, always ensure that the person being asked for advice or assistance is suitably knowledgeable in the particular game genre.