A downloadable tool for Windows

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Simply put, the most powerful user-friendly tool there is for creating games for 8-bit computers.  Supported formats include the ZX Spectrum, MSX, Amstrad CPC, BBC Model B, Dragon 32/64, Acorn Atom, Enterprise and VZ200 with more on the way.  Create blocks, sprites and screens, knock out a few lines of code in the simple scripting language (inspired by BASIC) or get the tool's script generator to produce the code for you and create a fast, smooth 8-bit game that would have graced any software house's catalogue back in the day.  Just hit F5 and MPAGD will build your game then automatically fire up an emulator and load it for you to play.  No prior programming knowledge is required, this is an excellent tool for learning to code or for teaching kids to code as Class P6 of Bearsden Primary School discovered when they used the tool's predecessor to create their own games.

Far more powerful than the original AGD with new commands and extra functionality, MPAGD comes complete with comprehensive documentation, a demonstration game and example code templates.  It includes tools to convert graphics between 8-bit formats, generating placeholders that can then be edited.  MPAGD will even import snapshots of games written using AGD 4.0 and above or AGDx and allow you to change or expand them.

Free to download with no obligations, I don't expect anything in return.  It is not my intention that anyone should ever pay royalties or subscriptions for a game developed with any of my game designers.  MPAGD is free and always will be.  If your game makes a bit of money you don't owe me anything.   Ever.  However, should you absolutely insist on contributing towards the cost of a pint of beer you can make a donation or go and buy one of my Egghead games or game development tools (Shoot-Em-Up Designer, Platform Game Designer) from www.cronosoft.co.uk

Documentation is comprehensive but to get the best out of MPAGD you can join the community of AGD and MPAGD developers over at the forums where help and support are available.  There is a Facebook group and tutorial videos are available below.  Note that since these were recorded MPAGD's build process has been simplified. 

If you're an experienced 8-bit developer and would like to add your favourite computer to the list of supported machines, get in touch.


Credits

Compilers and engines: Jonathan Cauldwell, Kees van Oss, Jose Luis Tursan, Kieran Connell, Pere Serrat, Noel Persa, Jason Oakley.

Windows editors: Jonathan Cauldwell.

Build suites: Kees van Oss.

Fonts: Damien Guard.


Download

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Click download now to get access to the following files:

V0.7.9.zip 30 MB
V0.7.10.zip 30 MB

Development log

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Comments

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Does this program also support blueMSX? If so, is there a way to set it up as a emulator for MSX projects?

The build process for each machine is configurable, you simply need to edit a batch file to fire up a specific emulator

How do it edit the batch file?
Do I simply replace "openMSX" with the other one (like for example "blueMSX")?

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interesting , anyone can make a zx spectrum version for my game?

Anyone can use this tool, it's simple and flexible

Made some tests for output on the COCO. Used mono for I have been working artifact colors for quite a while, it works just perfect. Well done!
If you happen to have the AGD boot screen in full color, send it to me I will artifact it. I will be looking deeper into the system. Thank you and congratulations. Check my games and let me know if you want any of them, I will send a key to you.

very good

Thank you for this!

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Thank you and all colaborators for making MPAGD. Finaly I find time to start making something on it, and I'm lonving: https://twitter.com/amaweks/status/1317628530667233280

Thank you, thank you, very thank you.

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Jonathon Cauldwell you are awesome. I owned my first speccy in 1986 at 4 years old and ever since then wanted to program games for it but never gotten around to it... Until 2 months ago when I found a copy of your amazing book how to write Z spectrum games v1.1. this taught me enough to really get started, but now I find this incredible looking software which I will start using and enjoying immediately. Thanks so much

Just wanted to say 'thank you' again for this awesome software!

THANK YOU!

:D

*sheepyhugs*

so im having a bit of a problem here. when i got to export the game i click yes to the boxes. and then in the console window, it just says that there where a bunch of error and i cant export it into a bin file there either. so i cant play it in fuse..

ps: i followed the tutorial btw...

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It won't export if there are errors in compilation.  Take a look on the AGD forums and see if the errors you're getting have been reported before, it's probably something simple.  If not, create a new post and we'll try to help

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I'm wondering how its going with the C64 version? I just love this program/tool. :D

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i'm trying to run it on Wine as well (GNU/Linux operating system, Ubuntu distribution) - the editor window appears blank - are there any plans to have it native on GNU/Linux, OSX, and other operating systems? or is anyone here skilled enough for helping us on that?

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The editor program uses a lot of Windows functions so would need separate include files for Windows and Linux, it's currently just one solid block of twenty-odd thousand lines of C (yes, I know...)  The compilers don't use any Windows calls if I remember correctly so they should be straightforward enough.  The other thing is that the project is ongoing so we'd need someone to commit to the project to convert any future Windows calls that are included.  As ever, I'm always happy to co-operate if someone wants to help

Any chance to provide a 64bit version. I am trying to run it on Mac (via Wine) and for Catalina only wine64 will work. Thanks!

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"Mac" you mean MacOS-X (or OSX), isn't it?

Yes, MacOS.

I'll do a 64-bit build soon, probably for the next release

Hi am I doing something wrong as followed tutorial one and got this. It loads speech 4.8 not fuse so not sure help needed please 

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Since the tutorials were made I've added Kees van Oss' build suites so you're probably better pressing F5 to test rather than following the videos to the letter.  The tool should build and run your game automatically now so try that and see if that works

Hi Jonathan,


Fantastic piece of software and an even better tutorial.  However, I seem to be having the same issue, where, after building the project I encounter the emulator starting up and then simply resetting.  Do you think you could reply with simple, bullet-point steps for the exporting process, please?

many thanks,

Marc

Try downloading version 0.7.8 and see if that fixes the problem.  If the emulator is still coming up and then exiting then there might be a problem with that emulator.  However, I've just added an option to export .tap files so you should at least be able to select File->Export game to create a file that should run on another emulator

Hi Jonathan,

It's me, the guy from Facebook who commented on your post yesterday.  I haven't got around to testing the new version yet, but should do within the next few days.  I'll let you know the outcome.

Many thanks,

Marc

Hello Jonathan, first of all, thank you for this amazing project, is a very useful tool for people to make their own games. I would like to ask you, can I make the sprites or 32y x 16x  size? thank you.

Hi Toniman, thanks for your comment.  You can use 2 16x16 sprites together to make a 16x32 sprite.  There is a way of doing this without tearing that I won't go into here but I think it was discussed over at the forums.  If you can't find the topic, just start a new one

IT IS A GREAT TOOL! Is there any possibility that in the future the tool can export the games to the micro msx?

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I'm not sure what the Micro MSX is but if someone wants to create a compiler and engine for any new format I'll incorporate them into the tool.

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I've been working on a Game Library for a set of computers made by VTech. I wonder if the MP Arcade Game Maker could be coded to work with these platforms? They are Z80.
Website: https://bluebilby.com/foxglovz/

I don't see why not.  If you or someone else wants to take a look at the Spectrum engine and compiler, (the source for which is included in the download), I'd be happy to put some Windows editors together and output the data in a form your compiler would need.  Essentially it would be a case of making a few changes to the compiler (CompilerZX.c) and engine (EngineZX.asm), modding the input and output routines to work with the VTech.  So long as you are happy to write the code to write blocks and characters to the screen, move sprites, read the keyboard etc. it should be straightforward enough.  The only other thing you might want to consider is making some parts of the engine conditional in order to save memory.

I'm happy to do work on it. There are some weird caveats with this platform so I'm not sure it'll be doable. No sprites and no Collison registers, for example.

I've documented some of it here: https://jasonoakley.com/foxglovz-dev/foxglovz-dev-diary-part-1/

Please let me know if that will prevent it being used with your engine.

Oh! On the Facebook group Kees says "The CCE-MC1000 has a Z80 and a 6847 so I think this is a good start."

Same specs.

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There are no hardware sprites on the Spectrum either, the engine XORs sprites and objects on to the screen, then XORs them again to remove them.  It does the same for the PLOT command so you might need to re-think these routines.  All collisions are coordinate based so it should just be a case of modding the collision routines to work with half the resolution.  Spectrum sprites are moved 2 pixels at a time horizontally so there are 4 pre-shifted copies of each frame on that format, you'd have to figure out what would work best for VTech.  Objects aren't animated so those are shifted into position at run-time on the Spectrum.

The speaker looks very familiar so no worries there.  :)

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Hello Jonathan,

I want to program games for the huge and growing Commodore 64 fan community, but assembler is to hard for me.  Im searching for a C64 game maker and so i´m here.

Your tool looks great, do you have plans for the Commodore 64 to?

Best regards from Austria.

gunnas

Yes, hopefully.  I'm looking for someone to convert the engine and compiler to the C64.  I can write the Windows graphics editors and output the data given the specifications.  We already have compilers and engines for 6502 machines so hopefully someone will step forward.  There is a thread over at Lemon 64 if you would like to post there and let the C64 community know how much you would like to see this happen.

Jonathan, 

Maybe you should inform crew at Mega65 about this exciting project. It seems that people are pretty much active there (and in search for software tools for that platform).
Mega65 should be released this year iirc, and it should be downward compatible to C64. Think about it like Spectrum Next vs classic Speccy.
Links: Mega65.org , forum (games & apps subsection
Thank you for your efforts.

Best regards

Dear Jonathan... great tool.

I'd like to know if in the screen design it is possible to shift the blocks up, down, left, right instead of redesign all the screen.

Furthermore I'd like to know if it is possible to maintain the majority of the blocks of the screens designed once I decide to change the screen dimensions.

That would save a lot of time.

Thanks.

Leonardo

You mean allow the user to scroll the screen around in the designer with the cursors, like in the sprite designer?  I hadn't thought of that but yes it's a good idea.  I'll have to change the keys around as the cursors are currently used for something else.  Your second request was requested by someone a while back and is already on my to-do list.  It's actually a lot of work to do though so I've been delaying it.  :)

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I am planning to create games for not just the ZX Spectrum, but also the Commodore 64. I would love to see a game made through AGD for that system (considering you have the Acorn Atom, a 6502 based system, supported), it would be a great addition to the C64 community for both people who are introduced to the world of retro gaming, and experienced C64 programmers.

Does this support NES files?

Not yet, but I'd like it to.  For that we'd need to get a NES developer on board to help convert the compiler (simple enough) and engine (slightly trickier).  I'd be happy to co-operate, share code (the source is freely available in the download) and write any Windows editor code required for things like sprites and graphics.  If you know any NES forums where developers hang out you could try and post there to show there's enthusiasm for the tool and see if anyone's interested.  If you do, let me know where you've posted and I'll come along and offer my assistance

Well I didn't post anywhere, but you can! I found a subreddit, r/NESDEV, and there you can probably ask others. I would really like to help, but I am in no way capable of doing something like this.

hallo! I just tried to download multiplattaform game designer but windows security keeps on deleting it identifying it as virus infected. Is it normal?

Thank you

A new wanna be 8bit game developer

DrNutella

It shouldn't do that.  Which file are you trying to download, the 32-bit or 64-bit version?

Both…
I finally downloaded the files and are clean and perfectly working. I don't know why windows edge is so picky.

I just used chrome for downloading the zip file of the 64 bit version

Thank you for keeping the mighty little speccy alive!

Regards,

Gabriele

In the description it mentions making games for "8-bit computers." Do I need a certain computer or virtual machine to run this?

The tool runs on a PC but you'll need an emulator or a real machine to test the games you create with it.  Take a quick look at the YouTube videos to see how it works

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would it be possible to create a basic FPS game like doom with this program? I'm asking because I'd like to make an exclusive FPS game for the spectrum

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Interesting question, nobody's asked that before!  Realistically, you won't be able to create a FPS like Doom with this.  To be honest you'd have to be exceptional at Z80 assembler to achieve that on a Z80 running at 3.5 MHz.  Then again, one or two enterprising individuals have managed to write 3D games using AGD plus there's an isometric game written with the tool and I wouldn't have thought either of those possible.  Nothing remotely like Doom though.  You have to get a bit creative with sprites and blocks to do anything vaguely 3D-ish

ok, thank you, I will try my best to use the limitations of the engine to my advantage and try to make a very simplistic fps game for the spectrum, I shall tell you how I get on

8bit FPS will be something like NES version of Top Gun, I assume. Or Duck Hunt :\ Not even close to Doom, yup. But still a bit of unusual classics!

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how do u test the game in the program?

Alas you can't, you'll need to use an assembler and an emulator.  Everyone's different so choose your own setup, you can configure it yourself.  For example, WinApe is a CPC emulator that has its own assembler included and is an excellent way to test CPC games written with this tool - export a source file, import into WinApe's assembler, then run it

Update: Kees van Oss' build suites are included in the download so MPAGD should automatically fire up an emulator for you to test your game