YoYo Games

YoYo Games is the company that currently owns, develops and distributes GameMaker: Studio.


On 26 January 2007, Mark Overmars announced his partnership with a company based in Dundee, Scotland called YoYo Games. The company, headed by CEO Sandy Duncan (ex Vice President of Xbox Europe), was founded to support the future development of GameMaker and to build a community for developers and casual gamers who could upload their games to the website. This website, since re-dubbed the Sandbox, was opened on 31 January.

The company established its European office in Dundee in July 2010 by opening an office within Abertay University. As well as CTO Russell Kay and Head of Development Mike Dailly, Kirsty Scott was hired as a community manager and Andrew McCluskey as a game developer. By the end of 2010, the company's secondary goal (to developing GameMaker) was set as a publisher/developer of iOS and Android games made within GameMaker, and several games had been published: Skydiver Mach II, Maddening, Simply Solitaire and Teka Teki. By this point, they had also hired an artist, Geoff Gunning, a producer, Stuart Poole, a web developer, Lee Turner and a temporary QA tester, Malcolm Collins, who was later moved into an assistant production role.

The company currently employs more than 25 employees. YoYo Games has announced plans to create an additional 25 positions, over the next 18 months, in systems development, software engineering, sales and customer service. The employees will be hired to help the company keep pace with the rapid evolution of the global games market and demand for Game Maker: Studio.

In June 2013, YoYo Games moved from its old location within Abertay University into new office space on Dundee's Waterfront redevelopment.


Main article: YoYo Games Sandbox

From 2007, YoYo Games offered a YouTube-style system of allowing members to upload their games, and others to play them. Between 2007 and 2011, this was the homepage for YoYo Games. Focus was shifted away from this and it was redubbed the Sandbox in 2011, moving to the subdomain sandbox.yoyogames.com. In 2014, game submissions to the Sandbox were closed, although the library of games remains available to download and play. In total, nearly 150,000 games are uploaded to the Sandbox.

Instant Play

The YoYo Games sandbox contained a feature that allowed people to play Game Maker games with a simple buffer and play. For the Instant Play to play the game, the user is required to download and install a plugin in their browser. Games made in Game Maker versions 6.0, 6.1, 7.0 and 8.0 qualify for this. The game is downloaded with a smaller size to the user's computer. The instant play then will run the game file with the engine and play it in a separate window. Can be useful because the games can be accessed again online and the game's saved information remains in the folder until a new version is downloaded to overwrite it. If there is no new version, it does not need to be re-downloaded. However, a downfall to this extension is that the games that are downloaded will stay in the YoYoGames folder and take up a lot of space until the user deletes them manually.

Instant Play was incompatible with GameMaker version 8.1 and above, and removed entirely soon after 8.1's release.


Main article: YoYo Games Competitions

YoYo Games hosts a series of Game Maker games competitions from its website. Each competition has its own unique theme around which all entries must be based. The competition awards prizes usually consisting of some monetary value to its first, second, and third place winners as well as providing a list of "honorable mention" entries to the public after the judging process is completed.

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