Tutorial 2: Gobble Guts

Download and instal the Game Maker software before you begin the tutorials.
As this tutorial builds from tutorial 1, it is advised that you complete tutorial 1 first.
Use the gobble_tutorial.pdf if you prefer to use a print version of these steps.

Read each step of the tutorial in turn, watching the video clip that demonstrates how to use the Game Maker software for that step. Then try to perform that step in your own Game Maker file. In this tutorial, video clips will only deal with new learning. You may need to revise what you learnt in the Fruits of the Forest tutorial (Tutorial 1) to perform some steps. Some of the video clips in this tutorial are quite long. Each video clip has play controls at the bottom, so you can pause a clip at any time to complete the steps in your own Game Maker file as you go.

There are also Game Maker program files available at various stages of the tutorial which you can open up to see one way of programming the game to that point. This will help your own problem-solving.

Learning steps

Step 1:
Open a new Game Maker file. Read the Game Information screen in **Gobble1** and then update the game information in your new Game Maker file.
Step 2
Watch Gobble2 to learn how to create a square room (480 x 480 pixels) and to change the size of the grid.
Step 3
Now use what you know already to add a background, a sprite and an object for a wall and then add them to the room so that it looks like the one shown in **Gobble3**.
Step 4
Now add sprites and objects for a diamond (one of the sprites in the various folder), a key (another sprite in the various folder), and the pacman character (a sprite in the pacman folder). Place these objects (including five of the diamonds) in your room so that it looks like the one shown in **Gobble4**.

It’s time for you to program this and try to make:
  1. the player able to move the GobbleGuts (pacman) left, right, up and down.
  2. the diamonds disappear when GobbleGuts collides with them
  3. a “Congratulations” message appear when GobbleGuts collides with the key
  4. the game restart.
Hint: You need to add events and actions to your objects
Open up **Gobble1.exe** see the finished program, this will help you do your own.
Step 5
You will notice when you test run your game that GobbleGuts does not move around very smoothly yet. Watch Gobble5 to see how you can make GobbleGuts move smoothly through the maze. You do this by making sure that GobbleGuts is always aligned with the grid.

Now you’ll add some sounds to make the game more interesting and to provide feedback to the player. First, add background music for level 1 just as you added title music in Tutorial 1. Make sure that you add a sound (a midi music file), an object_level1music that plays the sound, and that you place that object somewhere in your room (level1). Also, add different sounds for when GobbleGuts collides with a diamond and with the key.

Open Gobble2.exe to see how the finished program looks.

Step 6
Good game designs have clear goals. So now you have to create a clear goal or challenge in your game – the player must eat all the diamonds in the room before they can pass through the doors blocking the way to the key.

Add a sprite and an object for a door (stone sprite in the various folder). Place two doors in level 1 so that they block the path to the key as shown **Gobble6**.

Step 7
Watch **Gobble7** to learn how to make the doors disappear when all the diamonds have been collected.

Now the game needs a bit more challenge. Try to add one monster (monster sprite in the pacman folder) to the top of your room. Make the monster move backwards and forwards and make a ‘gobble’ sound when it collides with GobbleGuts, and showing a Game Over message as well.

Open Gobble3.exe to see one way of doing this – look at object_monster.
Step 8
Watch Gobble8 to learn how to make the GobbleGuts’ sprite change direction depending on which way he’s moving. This will make the game feel more interactive.

Step 9
You can also make the background to your room look better by using tiled backgrounds. Watch **Gobble9** to learn how to add these and how to place them in a room.

It is important to understand that tiles are just scenery and that you can place them over existing backgrounds and over existing objects. So you can use them to make the walls look better in your room but you still need the walls for things to bounce off. So you just need to make the walls invisible but still present and place tiles over the top of them.

Step 10
Your finished tiled room should look like the one shown in **Gobble10**.

Congratulations! You have built a maze game.
The rest is up to you and your imagination.

Why not try the following challenges to build on the GobbleGuts game that you have made so far. Open Gobble4.exe at any time to see a completed version of the game with all the following challenges included, if you need some help. You should also refer to the Fruits of the Forests tutorial (Tutorial 1) if you need reminding about some of these things.


1. Add scoring and a high score table when you win and lose. You could score points for collecting diamonds and bonus points for collecting each key.
2. Add lives and make the remaining lives appear as GobbleGuts sprites below the playing area (to do this you will need to make some space below the playing area by increasing the size of the room. See ‘gobble11’ for how to do this)
3. Add a second medium level and a third hard level with more and maybe different monsters. You should make some monsters move vertically instead of horizontally. You could also use invisible blocks that only the monsters bounce off to give them more difficult pathways. You could use different backgrounds and different tiles and design completely different mazes for the different levels. You could also make each level play different background music. Don’t forget you’ll need to tell the computer to go to the next room when the current room is completed
4. Design and create a title screen with title music and four buttons:
* Start – starts the game
  • Story – shows the game information
  • Scores – shows the high score table
  • Quit – ends the game

5. Create separate rooms with edited backgrounds that say “Game Over” or “Congratulations” when you win or lose instead of the small message displays (this is just like editing a background for your title room)
6. Write a Design Document (no more than one A4 page) like the one that was already prepared for Fruits of the Forest, but this time for GobbleGuts. Make sure you include:
  • Game narrative
  • Goal
  • Game Mechanics
  • Level Design

Writing a Design Document is good practice for when you design your own game from scratch!

Well done for completing Tutorial 2.
Now you can create even more exciting levels, change the game, or create a completely new game using what you’ve learnt.
Congratulations!! You have completed this tutorial.
If you use this tutorial in the classroom you could also have the students:
  • discuss with each other how their game’s design could be improved or developed (think about challenge, interactivity and immersion)
  • modify or develop the Fruits of the Forest program, perhaps designing new levels
  • design and develop their own game based on what they have learned.

This tutorial is influenced by and was modified with permission from Margaret Meijer. There are several Game Maker tutorials available on Margaret Meijer’s excellent ICT MindTools website.

Note: The steps in this tutorial were created using Game Maker 6.1 and some of the process may differ in subsequent versions of the software.