Libgdx

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3.7 out of 5 stars

Desktop/Android/BlackBerry/iOS/HTML5 Java game development framework

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Libgdx review by <span>Jeff W.</span>
Jeff W.
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Awesome framework when you need high performance and fine control

What do you like best?

It's high performance and cross platform. The documentation isn't bad be prepared to google & read. The community is great and there are tons of tutorials on the web. If you are willing to put the time in you will learn a ton and possibly wind up with a great game.

What do you dislike?

Depending on your needs this could be either a good thing or a bad thing... This is a framework not an engine. Don't expect an experience like Unity. It's more of a huge collection of really useful tools that you can assemble into an engine.

Recommendations to others considering the product

Check out all your options. If you need to ship a game yesterday then look elsewhere. If you want low level control and performance across multiple platforms and love java - then you can't go wrong.

What business problems are you solving with the product? What benefits have you realized?

Building a game solo that is unique and fun to play on a multitude of devices.

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Libgdx review by <span>Davide A.</span>
Davide A.
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Amazing low level Java graphic library ( for better or for worse)

What do you like best?

LibGDX is a low-level Java library with support for Graphic, Input and Sound. I say low-level because is quite minimal compared to more advanced game libraries for Java and other complete Game Engine. However, if you are interested in writing your own "engine", in a language that is not too complex like Java and you want to keep the ability to export your game in tons of platforms ( Windows, Linux, Mac OS X, Android, iOS, BlackBerry and web browsers with WebGL), this is the way to go.

What do you dislike?

I do not really enjoy programming in Java. Moreover, I think it is too low level for my needs. I usually do a lot of Game Jams and in those situations I prefer a game engine for fast prototypes (such as Unity).

Recommendations to others considering the product

You have to be sure that you need a Java library for tour game. Most of the times, a game engine such as Unity is more suitable for 90% of the "Indie Dev Needs". So, be sure that the time spent implementing the basics systems in LibGDX is motivated.

What business problems are you solving with the product? What benefits have you realized?

If you are interested in writing your own "engine", in a language that is not too complex like Java and you want to keep the ability to export your game in tons of platforms ( Windows, Linux, Mac OS X, Android, iOS, BlackBerry and web browsers with WebGL), this is the way to go.

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Thanks for letting us know!
Libgdx review by <span>Miguel Angel A.</span>
Miguel Angel A.
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The best graphics programming framework I have used

What do you like best?

The best thing about LibGDX is how complete and comprehensive it's API is. It covers OpenGL, OpenGL ES, Bullet Physics, Box2D and Freetype with a coherent API that's completely platform independent. It's platform support is also very good, being compatible with Apple iOS, Android, The Linux/Windows/Mac combo and even HTML 5. It also makes use of the best features of the Java programming language, allowing for very concise programs on the developer user side (all the typical Java verbosity is hidden behind LibGDX's API).

The other best thing about LibGDX are it's own libraries for Entity-Component development, common AI patterns, particle systems, value interpolation and game pad support.

It is also very easy to set up for Eclipse, NetBeans or IntelliJ development using it's absurdly simple setup tool. And if you don't like Java, LibGDX is also 100% compatible with other JVM languages like Scala.

And last but not least: it's free software both as in free speech and free beer!

What do you dislike?

That said, there is one not-so-terrible problem with LibGDX. It's documentation is sort of incomplete when it comes to advanced 3D programming, which it is perfectly capable of doing. The most affected part of this are the 3D animation and AI API documentations. The API and it's included javadocs are comprehensive enough that you can get around with it but some complete tutorials on the mentioned API's would be great.

Recommendations to others considering the product

The basic 2D API of LibGDX is simple enough to be used with only the tutorials from LibGDX's wiki. More advanced features like the Entity-Component API, the 3D API and the AI patterns require a bit more practice so prototyping some training applications will be required.

What business problems are you solving with the product? What benefits have you realized?

I Have used LibGDX to develop tutorial apps for local game design courses in my University, and I used it as the main development framework for my undergraduate thesis in Computer Graphics, developing an Augmented Reality control device for mobile robots as can be seen here https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=S_mK-1KjqG4 (video in spanish).

Libgdx review by <span>Fatir A.</span>
Fatir A.
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Powerful engine for prototypes and finished products

What do you like best?

Cross platform provides a convenient and consistent way to prototype concepts quickly for different platforms. Figure out what is the best tool for the job after the prototype, or proceed to build it into a finished product.

Very well documented and easy to find the information you need.

What do you dislike?

Java is a bit heavy to work with, and a good experience requires a lot of tools and moving parts to be patched together. Not the easiest thing to get up and running, especially when working with android binaries. Making sure everyone is using the same versions to avoid issues is a chore.

Recommendations to others considering the product

If you have experience with java and want a way to create games from scratch for other platforms, this is a great way to get started. However, there is a lot of things you have to roll from scratch that other engines handle for you. Make sure you weigh the investment on time spent learning this vs other products.

What business problems are you solving with the product? What benefits have you realized?

Quick prototyping solution for testing out ideas. The ability to work with different platforms while working with a single engine is very beneficial.

Libgdx review by User in Entertainment
User in Entertainment
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Excellent Framework for Game Development

What do you like best?

LibGDX is at its core a low-level wrapper over opengl. This gives the programmer plenty of flexibility and control in building a game engine. Beyond that, the framework has support for building ui, particle effects, texture atlases, and more. It's also open-source, making it easy to modify as you see fit.

Java's garbage collection feature saves some of the hassle of dealing with memory management, but for game development, that garbage collector needs to run as infrequently as possible. Libgdx is fast and its custom java collections implementations are carefully crafted to avoid garbage collections.

Libgdx also has several optional plugins to handle features like AI, entity-component systems, and more.

What do you dislike?

Support can be hard to find. A lot of the documentation may be old if you simply search online. Setup is tricky depending on your level of expertise. There's no handholding.

Recommendations to others considering the product

Start from the ground-up with simple projects and see what others are doing. There's lots of open-source tools and projects build using Libgdx.

What business problems are you solving with the product? What benefits have you realized?

We've built an engine from the ground-up. Unity is the ubiquitous standard for game development, but there's still a strong need to build something from scratch.

Libgdx review by <span>Neil J.</span>
Neil J.
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Using Libgdx as an artist

What do you like best?

It gives dev another option when looking for software. it might not be the best no you have another choice. I also like the build in animation support.

What do you dislike?

3D games don't look the best and there are not many options for lighting and effects

Recommendations to others considering the product

the program has some catching up to do but overall is fine for what it is. but i wouldn't blame anyone for picking unity or gamemaker over it

What business problems are you solving with the product? What benefits have you realized?

solving the problem of not giving 10 -30 % to of our budget to unity or unreal

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