October 7, 2015
With all the excitement at the moment surrounding Super Mario Maker, I am going to be taking a look at some other games that let you create your own levels. This list includes all sorts of different genres and play styles so theres something for everyone.
Top 10 Creative Games!
1. Trackmania United Forever
I first learned of Trackmania way back in 2004 or 5 when I visited my first ever gaming expo, The company, NADEO, were handing out demo disks of the original Trackmania. It was just when TM Sunrise was coming out. I tried the game when I got back and was hooked. It had so many posibilities and the physics made it really fun to play!
Trackmania United came out a few years later and included many new themes such as the stadium pictured below. The game as a whole was much improved and gave you almost unlimited posibilities to create any level you could dream of. As well as this it also had a great online mode where you can download other poeples courses, race against poeple at the same time and watch replays edited with the in game video editor.
I havent played the newest entries in the series but I really should… Trackmania is amazing!
2. Tony Hawks Pro Skater series
I’m sure i’ve spent more time on the park editor in the Tony Hawks series than the actual game. It began in Tony Hawks Pro Skater 2 and continued until American Wasteland (and slightly in Project 8, but it wasn’t a full park editor.) After that the team at Neversoft seemed to head in a strange direction and got lazy, but up until that point, the THPS (and later the Underground) series was one of the best for creating levels.
The editor had loads of different features and included all the kinds of park elements you could want, from half pipes, to grind rails and even some crazy things like lava pits and even vehicles to drive in the later installments!
It’s a shame they stopped making the games like before, although it looks like they are trying to get back to the original style with THPS5 coing out soon, complete with a brand new park creating mode! yay!
This long forgotten FPS series by Free Radical had an excellent map maker which even included some basic logic you could add to make the levels more intresting. As well as placing many different room types and corridors you could also choose all the lighting efects and which wepons and enemies you wanted to attack along the way.
A fantastic editor which improved in each version of the game. If there is ever a Time Splitters 4 I would love this feature to make a return!
4. Mario Vs DK 2
A bit simpler than the previous games in this list, Mario Vs DK is a puzzle game, sort of like lemmings, where you have to guide mini mario’s around complex courses full of objects that can interact with them in various ways. The level editor is very easy to use and includes everything you can find in the main game.
Recently, there was an updated version for the WiiU and 3DS called Mario Vs DK Tipping Stars, I haven’t played this one, but if its anywhere as good as the DS one then you’ll be guaranteed hours of level making fun!
Released on Dreamcast, PS1 and N64 in 1999, this racing game sees you playing as small RC cars in a variety of real world locations. The level editor does away witht he real world and instead lets you build race courses out of set blocks. This is a good thing as it means theres no real world limits to your creative powers, building huge jumps and ramps is great as well as making tunnels and all sorts of other obstacles. It was one game that kept my dreamcast powerd on years after I first played it!
6. Speedy Eggbert
A very unheard of PC game which I used to play back in the windows ME days! It was actually this game that introduced me to many aspects of game design, It has a fully features level editor complete with every kind of obstacle and block you could want from a platform game.
The game its self is a bit slow and clunky but the ammount of depth avaliable in the editor more than made up for that. There was even a sequel which expended a lot on the original game.
7. Advance Wars
Advance wars has always had a mode called Design Room, in which you can create your own maps, using every avaliable item and character you can see in the main game. The editor is very easy to use and is great fun. The levels can then be played either against an AI opponent or against a friend. More recent entires made making your own maps even easier thanks to the touchscreen and wifi made it possible to easily share your creations with friends (or enemies!)
This series is long overdue for a return to our handheld consoles! After the strange direction Intelegent Systems went with their latest gae, Codename Steam! They are now working on yet another Fire Emblem game so it might be a while before we return to the colourful world of Advance Wars (Days of Ruin not included)
8. 3D Game Maker
This was something else from way back in the windows ME days. I can’t remember where I got this from but I do remember spending many hours making some impossible maze like levels, complete with out of context enemies and textures and a story that made absolutely no sense. Of course, looking at it today its incredibly basic and probaby not good for much, but back then, this was amazing and let my imagination run wild!
This game has kind of a more professional level editor, using a full tile editor, you can create any kind of Rahman level possible. It even included some invisible objects you could use to trigger events in the game. I never got very far with it at the time but I can see how much of a fully featured system it was! It also gave me my first glimpse into real professional game development as this had you selecting tiles from a tile sheet as well as using some clever techniques to trigger events in the game.
10. Theme Park / Theme Park World
Although the series, and theme park games in general have some on so much since the original theme park, it was this game that got me obsessed with creating digital worlds in the first place. We got this way back in 1995 with our brand new, and probably very expensive Windows 95 PC! I used to love everything about the game and remember seeing the intro and having a huge grin on my face every time. The game by today’s standards is quite basic but it did still have loads of different options right down to minute details such as the amount of salt in the fries or how much chance of people winning prizes in the parks little prize areas. The original game was ported to the DS and plays brilliantly on the touch screen and is perfect for playing on the go!
Theme Park world which was reelased a few years later really expanded on the first games ideas in every way and best of all it even let you walk around your park in 3D and ride on the rollercoasters! A feature I enjoyed… A LOT!
Thanks for reading, and feel free to send me over your mario maker levels! I’ve been playing through some of them for a Youtube video so if you want to be featured i’d be happy to do a playthrough!