Originally titled Animo, the program was first released in 1999, and began as a program for creating 2D animations. The name was later changed to GameMaker, lacking a space to avoid intellectual property conflicts with the 1991 software Game-Maker.GameMaker primarily runs games that use 2D graphics, allowing the use of limited 3D graphics.
GameMaker is designed to allow its users to easily develop video games without having to learn a complex programming language such as C++ or Java through its proprietary drag and drop system. These icons represent actions that would occur in a game, such as movement, basic drawing, and simple control structures. It is also possible to create custom “action libraries” using the Library Maker. Game Maker Language (GML) is the primary interpreted scripting language used in GameMaker, which is usually significantly slower than compiled languages such as C++ or Delphi. It is used to further enhance and control the design of a game through more conventional programming, as opposed to the drag and drop system.
GameMaker accommodates redistribution on multiple platforms. The program builds for these platforms: Windows, Windows 8, Mac OS X, Ubuntu, HTML5, Android, iOS, Windows Phone 8, Tizen, Xbox One, and Playstation. However, a Windows desktop computer with system requirements equal to that of the game produced is required in order to develop the games along with a broadband internet connection.