2D and 3D Game Development

By juegoadmin | Game Development | May 27th, 2021

Throwing Some Light on the Cost and Benefits of 2D and 3D Game Development.

The gaming industry is expanding and evolving faster than ever as we are stepping into the second decade of the 21st century. Innovative ideas are being transformed into games and new games are launched every day. Limitations such as 2D designs are a thing of the past as 3D is making a splash. Nevertheless, the importance of 2D or their popularity has in no way diminished as a consequence.

2D and 3D games: Their Current Status.

While 2D games have been present for quite a time, 3D games made their entry in the 1990s and have been gaining pace since then. 2D and 3D games have their own following, space, pros as well as cons. Read on to find out the differences, costs, and benefits of creating games based on 2D and 3D.

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Primary Difference and the Consequence:

The primary difference between 3D and the 2D game is the presence of an extra dimension denoted by the D. Volume and depth is present in 3D games such as The Elder Scrolls: Blades, Pro Evolution Soccer 2021, and Ark: Survival Evolved. Whereas 2D games like Super Meat Boy Forever, Skellattack and Noita are rendered in 2 dimensions and are flat.

This fundamental difference leads to other notable consequences in the gameplay such as:

  1. Environment
  2. Movement
  3. Goal
  4. And Controls.


  1. Environment:

Dimension plays an important role here. 2D games look flat. Consequently, the environment in 2D games is also flat visually. As far as 2D games go, the focus is not much on the environment of the game.

On the contrary, 3D games have a better appearance visually. The focus in 3D games is more on minute details in the environment. This leads to the better visual quality of 3D games.

  1. Movement:

The character’s movement in 2D games like Temple Run or Angry Birds is in a linear fashion. The characters in the game move in various directions but predominantly the movement is forward. There is a start point as well as an endpoint within which the character moves.

But the movement of characters has a lot of scope in 3D games. Since 3D games like Bugsnax and Serious Sam 4 have depth and volume, there is the unrestricted movement of characters. They can move freely in any direction unlike the characters in 2D games. Their movement is not limited to forward motion.

  1. Goal:

As far as 2D games are concerned, there are only straightforward goals. The presence of uncomplicated controls makes the game mechanism effortless. The best example is Super Mario Bros.

But the goals of 3D games are not as straightforward as the 2D games. 3D games have extended possibilities and many goals worth exploring. An example is a Half-Life: Alyx.

  1. Controls:

Due to the 2 dimensional nature and linearity, 2D games have controls that are pretty manageable. A beginner too will smoothly adapt to 2D games with ease.

The game controls in a 3D game are a little more complex viz a viz the 2D games. Since the movement of characters is unrestricted and can happen in any direction, some amount of practice is needed to familiarize oneself with the controls in 3D games and playing them.

2D and 3D Games: The Benefits.

Both have their own advantages. Certain games need to be in 2D so that its capabilities can be extracted to the fullest. The same is the case for 3D as well. Creating a game in 3D just to join the bandwagon will make it look ostensible when you play it. Read on to find out the benefits of both 2D and 3D games.

The Advantage of 2D Design:

  1. Controls are Simple:

They are hassle-free and any beginner will gladly choose a 2D game to explore initially and master it later. This all-accessible nature of 2D games will bring more audience and rake in the money. Example: The Mario Franchise.

  1. Development is Easier:

Developing a 2D game is very economical when compared with a 3D game. The time taken is less due to the fact that it has a flat design. And the update of the games can be easily included later. Example: Flappy Bird

  1. 2D Games Have Easy Instructions:

2D games are the simple “tap to play games” which come with instructions that are easy. The interface is simple. The visuals are flat. The plot of some 2D games is non-existent or they have a limited plot. The size of 2D games is small as well. An example is Jetpack Joyride.

3D Design and its Benefits:

  1. Closer to Reality:

Those who are adept at playing video games always prefer immersive gameplay and 3D games are capable of living up to their expectations. With more volume, depth and environment, 3D games mimic reality as closely as possible. Example: Call of Duty: Mobile.

  1. The Quality of Graphics:

The graphics component of 3D games is very creative and their quality is good. One of the reasons behind the popularity of 3D games like Iron Blades: Medieval Legends and Asphalt 9: Legends is the complexity of graphics rendered by 3D games which live up to the expectation of gamers.

  1. Versatility:

Game developers have multiple options and different genres to explore in order to create a 3D game when compared to 2D games. The complexity of goals in 3D games is higher and hence the mission to accomplish can get more challenging making it exciting for the players.

A Note of Caution:

Just because the benefits of 3D games exceed that of 2D games, it does not mean there are no takers for the latter. Even though 3D games are alluring, they cannot erase 2D games off. Both have a niche that is active and growing, and they both do not countermand each other.

Some Development Tools Available for 2D and 3D Games:

  1. GameMaker Studio:

This is the perfect software for 2D game designing. It provides a free trial as well. GameMaker Studio 2 should be the unanimous choice for beginners since it comes with an interface that is easy to master and offers many development tutorials.

  1. Unity:

Initially deployed for developing 3D games, Unity was later integrated for the development of 2D games as well. One requires coding knowledge of and skills of C# for working on Unity. Indie developers prefer Unity the most but it does not have many video tutorials for guidance.

Cost of Developing 2D/3D Games.

The development cost of a 2D or 3D game is dictated by the complexity level of the game, the designing tools employed, the rendering of graphics, soundtracks deployed etc. The development cost of a game called Flappy Bird was $300 but games like Grand Theft Auto can go up to $265 million.

Some Factors Influencing the Cost of Game Development are:

  1. Operating System:

Particular operating systems such as iOS, Windows, Android, or Mac are the target of 2D as well as 3D games. Certain games support all the systems. Hand-picking the operating system which you need for the game plays a major role in the development cost.

  1. Expenses in The Pre-Development Phase:

A well-planned blueprint as well as documentation for the game’s story, levels, designs, characters, environment etc can prevent the piling up of cost in the eleventh hour which will increase the budget.

If the game design is a bit complex, it will end up increasing the cost since you will require the service of a game developer who is an expert.

  1. Size/Level of the Game:

This is a crucial stage since the decision pertaining to the type of game you are anticipating developing is decided here. This could range from:

Type of Game and Anticipated Cost

  • Mini-game between $3000 to $20,000.
  • Casual 2D game between $20,000 to $60,000.
  • Mid-Level games between $60,000 to $120,000.
  • High-Level games between $120,000 to $250,000.

These prices will vary depending upon the factors mentioned above.

  1. Post-Development Expenses:

Post-Development expenses encompass stages of testing, game’s marketing, updating as well as upgrading the games regularly and if required, adding more levels or stages.

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If you plan to develop a 2D or a 3D game, these are the things you need to keep at the back of the mind when you take the plunge. You can rest assured that there is enough scope for both 2D as well as 3D games in the immediate future.

Juego Studios is a well-known technology game design company that specializes in 2D and 3D game development. They have an experienced team working with agile methodology offering end-to-end support when it comes to 2D and 3D game development. Some 3D games created by them are Adventure Quest Battle Gems, Pro Feel Golf, and Super Club Soccer. Crazy Canon, Multiplayer Pool Game, and Sea Dash are some of the popular 2D games created by them. Approach Juego Studios for your 2D as well as 3D game development needs.

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