Construct 3

New Top 5 Game Design Tips for Construct 3 Users

Construct 3 is a game engine that lets you create games in the browser without coding or with JavaScript. You can publish your games to various platforms, add stunning animations with Construct Animate, and access thousands of assets and tutorials. Construct 3 is suitable for beginners and experts alike, as it offers both a visual scripting system and a JavaScript editor. You can create games by using drag-and-drop events, actions, and conditions, or by writing your own code. You can also use the built-in behaviors, effects, and plugins, or extend the engine with your own addons.

Credits : Ask Gamedev

If you want to learn more about Construct 3, you can visit the official website1, where you can find the documentation, the manual, the FAQ, and the pricing plans. You can also try Construct 3 for free2 for up to 25 events per project, or upgrade to a subscription for unlimited events and features.

In this blog post, I will share with you my top 5 game design tips for Construct 3 users, based on my own experience and research. These tips will help you make better games, avoid common pitfalls, and improve your skills as a game developer. Whether you are new to Construct 3 or have some experience with it, I hope you will find these tips useful and inspiring.

Table of Contents

Tip 1: Start with a prototype

One of the most important steps in game design is prototyping, which is the process of creating a simple and playable version of your game idea. Prototyping allows you to test your core mechanics, gameplay, and fun factor, before investing too much time and resources into development. Prototyping also helps you to iterate and improve your game, based on feedback and data.

Construct 3 is a great tool for prototyping, as it allows you to create games quickly and easily, without coding or with minimal coding. You can use the visual scripting system to create events and actions, and use the built-in behaviors and effects to add functionality and polish. You can also use the preview and debug modes to test and troubleshoot your game, and export your game to various formats and platforms.

To create a prototype with Construct 3, you should follow these steps:

Define your game idea and scope.

What is the genre, theme, and goal of your game? What are the main features and mechanics of your game? What are the target audience and platform of your game? How long do you want your game to be? You should write down your answers to these questions, and keep them as simple and clear as possible.

Create a new project and a layout.

A project is the main container of your game, where you can manage your files and settings. A layout is the main scene of your game, where you can place and arrange your objects. To create a new project and a layout, open Construct 3 in your browser and click on the “New project” button. You will see a dialog box where you can enter the project name, the author name, the description, and the orientation. For this tutorial, I will name my project “Platformer Prototype”, and choose the landscape orientation. You can also choose a template or a preset, but I will leave them blank. Click on the “Create” button to confirm. You will see the Construct 3 editor, which consists of several panels and tabs. On the left, you have the Project Bar, where you can see the files and folders of your project. On the right, you have the Properties Bar, where you can see and edit the properties of the selected object. On the bottom, you have the Layers Bar, where you can see and manage the layers of your layout. On the top, you have the Menu Bar, where you can access the main functions and settings of the editor. And in the center, you have the Layout View, where you can see and edit the visual elements of your game.

To create a layout, right-click on the “Layouts” folder in the Project Bar and select “Add layout”. You will see a dialog box where you can enter the layout name and size. For this tutorial, I will name my layout “Level1”, and set the size to 1280 x 720 pixels. Click on the “Create” button to confirm. You will see a blank layout in the Layout View, with a grid and a crosshair. You can use the mouse wheel to zoom in and out, and the middle mouse button to pan around. You can also use the keyboard shortcuts to perform these actions. You can change the grid settings and the layout color in the Properties Bar.

Add objects and behaviors.

Objects are the basic graphic elements that make up your game, such as sprites, texts, tiles, particles, and more. Behaviors are the predefined functions that add functionality and interactivity to your objects, such as platform, solid, physics, and more. To add objects and behaviors, right-click on the layout in the Layout View and select “Insert new object”. You will see a dialog box where you can choose the object type and name. For this tutorial, I will choose the “Sprite” object type, and name it “Player”. Click on the “Insert” button to confirm. You will see a crosshair in the Layout View, where you can place the object. Click anywhere on the layout to place the object. You will see a default image of a blue square, which you can change later. You will also see the object in the Project Bar, under the “Objects” folder. To add behaviors to the object, select the object in the Layout View or in the Project Bar, and click on the “Behaviors” tab in the Properties Bar. You will see a list of behaviors that you can add to the object. For this tutorial, I will add the “Platform” behavior to the player object, which will allow the player to move and jump on platforms.

To add the behavior, click on the “Add behavior” button, and choose the “Platform” behavior from the list. You will see the behavior in the list, with its properties. You can change the properties of the behavior, such as the speed, the gravity, the jump strength, and more. For this tutorial, I will leave the properties as they are. You can add more objects and behaviors to your layout, such as platforms, enemies, coins, and more. You can also use the tools and options in the Layout View and the Properties Bar to modify the objects, such as cropping, resizing, rotating, flipping, and coloring. You can also add more frames to create animations, such as walking, jumping, and dying. For this tutorial, I will leave the objects as they are, and close the Layout View.

Add events and actions.

Events and actions are the core of the visual scripting system, which allows you to create the logic and interactivity of your game. Events are the conditions that trigger actions, and actions are the effects that happen when the conditions are met. To add events and actions, click on the “Event sheet 1” tab in the Layout View, to switch to the Event Sheet View. You will see a blank event sheet, where you can add events and actions.

To add an event, right-click on the event sheet and select “Add event”. You will see a dialog box where you can choose the object and the condition. For this tutorial, I will choose the “Keyboard” object and the “On key pressed” condition. Click on the “Next” button to confirm. You will see another dialog box where you can choose the key. For this tutorial, I will choose the “Space” key. Click on the “Done” button to confirm. You will see the event in the event sheet, with the condition and an empty action. To add an action, right-click on the action and select “Add action”. You will see a dialog box where you can choose the object and the action. For this tutorial, I will choose the “Player” object and the “Simulate control” action. Click on the “Next” button to confirm. You will see another dialog box where you can choose the control. For this tutorial, I will choose the “Jump” control. Click on the “Done” button to confirm. You will see the action in the event sheet, under the condition.

This event means that when the space key is pressed, the player will simulate a jump. You can add more events and actions to your event sheet, such as moving the player, colliding with enemies, collecting coins, and more. You can also use the tools and options in the Event Sheet View and the Properties Bar to modify the events and actions, such as adding sub-events, groups, variables, and more. For this tutorial, I will leave the events and actions as they are, and close the Event Sheet View.

Preview and debug your game.

To preview and debug your game, click on the “Preview” button in the Menu Bar. You will see your game running in a new browser tab, where you can test and play your game. You can also use the debug tools to inspect and modify your game, such as pausing, stepping, watching, and profiling. You can access the debug tools by clicking on the “Debug” button in the Menu Bar, or by pressing F5. For this tutorial, I will preview and debug my game, and make sure everything works as expected.

You have now created a prototype of your platformer game with Construct 3. You can use this prototype to test your game idea, get feedback, and improve your game. You can also export your prototype to various formats and platforms, by clicking on the “Export” button in the Menu Bar.

Tip 2: Balance your game

One of the most challenging aspects of game design is balancing your game, which means adjusting the difficulty, the rewards, and the feedback of your game to make it fair, fun, and engaging. Balancing your game requires a lot of testing, tweaking, and iteration, as well as understanding your target audience and their preferences. Balancing your game also depends on the genre, the theme, and the goal of your game, as different games may require different levels of challenge, complexity, and depth.

Construct 3 offers many tools and options to help you balance your game, such as variables, expressions, functions, arrays, dictionaries, and more. You can use these tools and options to create and modify the parameters of your game, such as the health, the damage, the speed, the score, the time, and more. You can also use the debug mode to inspect and modify your game in real time, and see the effects of your changes.

To balance your game with Construct 3, you should follow these steps:

Define your game’s difficulty curve.

The difficulty curve is the progression of the challenge and the complexity of your game, from the beginning to the end. The difficulty curve should match the skill and the interest of your players, and provide them with a satisfying and rewarding experience. A common difficulty curve is the one that starts easy, then gradually increases, then peaks at a climax, then decreases at a resolution. You can also have multiple difficulty curves for different levels, modes, or scenarios of your game. To define your game’s difficulty curve, you should write down the main challenges and the goals of your game, and how they change over time. You should also consider the feedback and the rewards that you give to your players, and how they motivate and guide them. For example, you can use sounds, texts, animations, effects, and more to communicate the state and the outcome of your game to your players. You can also use coins, stars, medals, achievements, and more to reward your players for their performance and progress.

Implement your game’s difficulty curve.

To implement your game’s difficulty curve, you should use the tools and options in Construct 3 to create and modify the parameters of your game, such as the health, the damage, the speed, the score, the time, and more. You should also use the events and actions to create and modify the logic and the interactivity of your game, such as the movement, the collision, the collection, the win, and more. You should also use the behaviors and effects to add functionality and polish to your game, such as the platform, the solid, the physics, the fade, and more. For example, you can use the system expressions to set the health of the player and the enemies, and use the compare variable condition and the set text action to show the health on the screen. You can also use the platform behavior to control the movement and the jump of the player, and use the on collision condition and the destroy action to make the player collide with the enemies and the coins. You can also use the fade behavior to make the enemies and the coins disappear when they are destroyed, and use the audio object to play sounds when the player jumps, collides, or collects.

Test and tweak your game’s difficulty curve.

To test and tweak your game’s difficulty curve, you should use the preview and debug modes to test and troubleshoot your game, and see the effects of your changes. You should also use the debug tools to inspect and modify your game in real time, and see the values and the states of your objects, variables, behaviors, and more. You should also use the profiler tool to measure the performance and the optimization of your game, and see the CPU, the GPU, the memory, and the FPS of your game. For example, you can use the watch tab to see the value of the score variable, and use the edit value option to change it. You can also use the instances tab to see the list of the objects in your layout, and use the edit properties option to change their properties. You can also use the profiler tab to see the CPU usage of your game, and use the pause and resume buttons to control the execution of your game.

You have now learned how to balance your game with Construct 3. You can use this process to adjust the difficulty, the rewards, and the feedback of your game to make it fair, fun, and engaging. You can also use the feedback and the data from your players and your testers to further improve your game. Balancing your game is an ongoing and iterative process, that requires a lot of testing, tweaking, and iteration.

Tip 3: Polish your game

Polishing your game means adding the final touches and details that make your game look and feel professional, such as graphics, sounds, effects, animations, and more. Polishing your game can make a huge difference in the quality and the appeal of your game, as it can enhance the immersion, the emotion, and the satisfaction of your game. Polishing your game can also help you stand out from the crowd, as it can show your passion, your style, and your identity as a game developer.

Construct 3 offers many tools and options to help you polish your game, such as sprites, tiles, particles, sounds, music, effects, and more. You can use these tools and options to create and modify the visual and audio elements of your game, and add variety, depth, and personality to your game. You can also use the animation editor, called Construct Animate, to create stunning animations for your game, such as walking, jumping, dying, and more.

To polish your game with Construct 3, you should follow these steps:

Add graphics and sounds.

Graphics and sounds are the most obvious and important aspects of polishing your game, as they are the first things that your players will see and hear. Graphics and sounds can create the mood and the atmosphere of your game, and convey the theme and the genre of your game. Graphics and sounds can also communicate the state and the outcome of your game, and provide feedback and guidance to your players. To add graphics and sounds to your game, you can use the tools and options in Construct 3 to create and modify the objects and the sounds of your game, such as sprites, tiles, particles, sounds, and music. You can also import graphics and sounds from external sources, such as the Construct website1, where you can find thousands of assets and tutorials. You can also create your own graphics and sounds with external tools, such as Photoshop, Gimp, Audacity, and more. For example, you can use the sprite editor to create and edit the images of your objects, and use the image points to define the origin and the collision points of your objects. You can also use the tilemap editor to create and edit the tilemaps of your game, and use the tileset to define the tiles and the collision shapes of your game. You can also use the particle editor to create and edit the particle effects of your game, and use the properties to define the appearance and the behavior of your particles. You can also use the audio object to import and play the sounds and the music of your game, and use the properties to define the volume, the looping, the tag, and more.

Add effects and animations.

Effects and animations are the subtle and refined aspects of polishing your game, as they can add life and motion to your game. Effects and animations can enhance the realism and the dynamism of your game, and create the illusion of depth and perspective in your game. Effects and animations can also emphasize the actions and the reactions of your game, and provide feedback and reward to your players. To add effects and animations to your game, you can use the tools and options in Construct 3 to create and modify the effects and the animations of your game, such as behaviors, effects, and Construct Animate. You can also import effects and animations from external sources, such as the Construct website1, where you can find thousands of assets and tutorials. You can also create your own effects and animations with external tools, such as After Effects, Blender, and more. For example, you can use the behaviors to add functionality and interactivity to your objects, such as platform, solid, physics, and more. You can also use the effects to add visual enhancements and filters to your objects, such as fade, glow, blur, and more. You can also use the Construct Animate to create and edit the animations of your objects, and use the frames, the animations, and the properties to define the images, the names, and the speed of your animations.

Test and tweak your game’s polish.

To test and tweak your game’s polish, you should use the preview and debug modes to test and troubleshoot your game, and see the effects of your changes. You should also use the debug tools to inspect and modify your game in real time, and see the values and the states of your objects, variables, behaviors, and more. You should also use the profiler tool to measure the performance and the optimization of your game, and see the CPU, the GPU, the memory, and the FPS of your game. For example, you can use the watch tab to see the value of the score variable, and use the edit value option to change it. You can also use the instances tab to see the list of the objects in your layout, and use the edit properties option to change their properties. You can also use the profiler tab to see the CPU usage of your game, and use the pause and resume buttons to control the execution of your game.

You have now learned how to polish your game with Construct 3. You can use this process to add the final touches and details that make your game look and feel professional, such as graphics, sounds, effects, animations, and more. You can also use the feedback and the data from your players and your testers to further improve your game. Polishing your game is an essential and rewarding process, that requires a lot of creativity, attention, and iteration.

Tip 4: Optimize your game

Optimizing your game means improving the performance and the efficiency of your game, such as the speed, the memory, the battery, and the compatibility of your game. Optimizing your game can make a huge difference in the quality and the appeal of your game, as it can prevent lag, crashes, glitches, and errors in your game. Optimizing your game can also help you reach more players, as it can make your game run smoothly on different devices, browsers, and platforms.

Construct 3 offers many tools and options to help you optimize your game, such as the profiler, the debugger, the exporter, the minifier, and more. You can use these tools and options to measure and improve the performance and the optimization of your game, and see the CPU, the GPU, the memory, and the FPS of your game. You can also use the best practices and the tips to optimize your game, such as using fewer objects, smaller images, simpler events, and more.

To optimize your game with Construct 3, you should follow these steps:

Measure your game’s performance.

The first step to optimize your game is to measure your game’s performance, which means to check the CPU, the GPU, the memory, and the FPS of your game. The CPU is the central processing unit, which handles the logic and the calculations of your game. The GPU is the graphics processing unit, which handles the graphics and the rendering of your game. The memory is the storage space, which holds the data and the assets of your game. The FPS is the frames per second, which measures the smoothness and the responsiveness of your game. To measure your game’s performance, you can use the profiler tool, which shows you the CPU, the GPU, the memory, and the FPS of your game, and how they change over time. You can access the profiler tool by clicking on the “Profiler” button in the Menu Bar, or by pressing F6. You will see a new browser tab, where you can see the graphs and the numbers of your game’s performance. You can also use the pause and resume buttons to control the execution of your game, and the clear button to reset the graphs. For example, you can use the CPU graph to see the CPU usage of your game, and the CPU breakdown to see the CPU usage of each event and action. You can also use the GPU graph to see the GPU usage of your game, and the GPU breakdown to see the GPU usage of each object and effect. You can also use the memory graph to see the memory usage of your game, and the memory breakdown to see the memory usage of each object and asset. You can also use the FPS graph to see the FPS of your game, and the FPS breakdown to see the FPS of each layer and layout.

Improve your game’s performance.

The second step to optimize your game is to improve your game’s performance, which means to reduce the CPU, the GPU, the memory, and the FPS of your game. To improve your game’s performance, you can use the debugger tool, which allows you to inspect and modify your game in real time, and see the values and the states of your objects, variables, behaviors, and more. You can access the debugger tool by clicking on the “Debug” button in the Menu Bar, or by pressing F5. You will see a new browser tab, where you can see the tabs and the options of the debugger tool. You can also use the pause and resume buttons to control the execution of your game, and the step buttons to execute your game step by step. For example, you can use the watch tab to see the value of any expression, and use the edit value option to change it. You can also use the instances tab to see the list of the objects in your layout, and use the edit properties option to change their properties. You can also use the breakpoints tab to see the list of the breakpoints in your event sheet, and use the toggle breakpoint option to enable or disable them. You can also use the best practices and the tips to improve your game’s performance, such as using fewer objects, smaller images, simpler events, and more. For example, you can use the destroy action to destroy the objects that are not needed, and use the recycle option to reuse the objects that are needed. You can also use the crop option to crop the images to the smallest size possible, and use the power-of-two option to make the images fit the GPU better. You can also use the sub-events, groups, and functions to organize and simplify your events, and use the triggers, conditions, and variables to optimize your logic and calculations.

Export and test your game’s optimization.

The third step to optimize your game is to export and test your game’s optimization, which means to check the speed, the memory, the battery, and the compatibility of your game on different devices, browsers, and platforms. To export and test your game’s optimization, you can use the exporter tool, which allows you to export your game to various formats and platforms, such as HTML5, Android, iOS, Windows, Mac, Linux, Steam, Itch.io, Newgrounds, Facebook, and more. You can access the exporter tool by clicking on the “Export” button in the Menu Bar. You will see a dialog box where you can choose the format and the platform of your game, and the options and the settings of your game. For example, you can use the minify option to reduce the size and the loading time of your game, and use the compression option to compress the images and the sounds of your game. You can also use the best practices and the tips to export and test your game’s optimization, such as using the preview option to test your game before exporting, and using the remote preview option to test your game on your device using the Construct 3 app. You can also use the tools and the websites to test your game’s optimization, such as the Chrome DevTools, the Lighthouse, the WebPageTest, and more.

You have now learned how to optimize your game with Construct 3. You can use this process to improve the performance and the efficiency of your game, such as the speed, the memory, the battery, and the compatibility of your game. You can also use the feedback and the data from your players and your testers to further improve your game. Optimizing your game is an essential and rewarding process, that requires a lot of testing, tweaking, and iteration.

Tip 5: Publish and promote your game

Publishing and promoting your game means making your game available and visible to the public, such as uploading your game to a website, a store, or a platform, and marketing your game to your potential players and customers. Publishing and promoting your game can make a huge difference in the success and the impact of your game, as it can increase the downloads, the ratings, the reviews, and the revenue of your game. Publishing and promoting your game can also help you reach more players, as it can make your game accessible and attractive to different audiences, markets, and regions.

Construct 3 offers many tools and options to help you publish and promote your game, such as the exporter, the cloud, the store, the arcade, and more. You can use these tools and options to publish your game to various formats and platforms, such as HTML5, Android, iOS, Windows, Mac, Linux, Steam, Itch.io, Newgrounds, Facebook, and more. You can also use the best practices and the tips to publish and promote your game, such as creating a landing page, a trailer, a press kit, and more.

To publish and promote your game with Construct 3, you should follow these steps:

Export your game.

The first step to publish and promote your game is to export your game, which means to convert your game to a format and a platform that can run your game. To export your game, you can use the exporter tool, which allows you to export your game to various formats and platforms, such as HTML5, Android, iOS, Windows, Mac, Linux, Steam, Itch.io, Newgrounds, Facebook, and more. You can access the exporter tool by clicking on the “Export” button in the Menu Bar. You will see a dialog box where you can choose the format and the platform of your game, and the options and the settings of your game. For example, you can use the minify option to reduce the size and the loading time of your game, and use the compression option to compress the images and the sounds of your game. You can also use the best practices and the tips to export your game, such as testing your game before exporting, choosing the right format and platform for your game, and following the guidelines and the requirements of your chosen platform.

Upload your game.

The second step to publish and promote your game is to upload your game, which means to transfer your game to a website, a store, or a platform that can host your game. To upload your game, you can use the cloud tool, which allows you to upload your game to the Construct website, where you can find thousands of games, assets, and tutorials. You can also use the store tool, which allows you to upload your game to the Construct store, where you can sell your game and earn money. You can also use the arcade tool, which allows you to upload your game to the Construct arcade, where you can showcase your game and get feedback. You can access these tools by clicking on the “Cloud”, “Store”, or “Arcade” buttons in the Menu Bar. You will see a dialog box where you can enter the details and the information of your game, such as the name, the description, the tags, the price, and the screenshots. You can also use the best practices and the tips to upload your game, such as choosing a catchy and relevant name, writing a clear and concise description, adding appropriate and descriptive tags, setting a fair and competitive price, and providing high-quality and attractive screenshots.

Promote your game.

The third step to publish and promote your game is to promote your game, which means to market your game to your potential players and customers. To promote your game, you can use the tools and the websites to create and share your game’s landing page, trailer, press kit, and more. You can also use the tools and the websites to distribute and advertise your game, such as social media, blogs, forums, newsletters, and more. You can also use the tools and the websites to measure and analyze your game’s performance, such as downloads, ratings, reviews, revenue, and more. For example, you can use the Construct website to create and share your game’s landing page, which is a web page that introduces your game and provides a link to download or play your game. You can also use the YouTube website to create and share your game’s trailer, which is a video that showcases your game and highlights its features and benefits. You can also use the presskit() website to create and share your game’s press kit, which is a document that provides the media and the press with the information and the assets of your game. You can also use the best practices and the tips to promote your game, such as identifying and targeting your audience, creating and maintaining your online presence, reaching out and networking with the media and the influencers, and collecting and responding to feedback and reviews.

You have now learned how to publish and promote your game with Construct 3. You can use this process to make your game available and visible to the public, and increase the downloads, the ratings, the reviews, and the revenue of your game. You can also use the feedback and the data from your players and your customers to further improve your game. Publishing and promoting your game is an essential and rewarding process, that requires a lot of planning, execution, and evaluation.

Conclusion

In this blog post, I have shared with you my top 5 game design tips for Construct 3 users, based on my own experience and research. These tips are:

  • Start with a prototype
  • Balance your game
  • Polish your game
  • Optimize your game
  • Publish and promote your game

I hope you enjoyed this blog post and learned something new about Construct 3. If you want to learn more about Construct 3, you can visit the official website, where you can find the documentation, the manual, the FAQ, and the pricing plans. You can also try Construct 3 for free for up to 25 events per project, or upgrade to a subscription for unlimited events and features.

If you have any questions or feedback, feel free to leave a comment below or contact me on my social media channels. You can also share your games with me and the Construct community on the Construct website, where you can find thousands of games, assets, and tutorials. I would love to see what you create with Construct 3.

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