This article includes some of the most commonly-asked questions regarding MFGG.
Q: What is MFGG?
A: MFGG is a site for making, sharing, and playing games, especially Mario fangames. Our forums and MFGG Discord Group also include some off-topic fun, like original artwork, discussion on other video games, gaming tournaments, forum games, and general chitchat, but primarily we're a Mario-themed game development community.
Q: I made a game that has nothing to do with Mario. Can I post it on MFGG?
A: Yes! The MFGG mainsite is just for games that feature Mario or related characters (Yoshi, Wario, Donkey Kong, and so forth). However, you can share any kind of game you like in the Development Showcase board on the MFGG forums. The MFGG Wiki also has some non-Mario stuff.
Q: How long has MFGG existed?
Q: Are the games on this site safe?
A: Yes they are. Before a game can appear on the MFGG mainsite, it has to be checked by at least two of our Quality Control staffers. We scan the games for viruses/malware and make sure that they don't cause any unexpected issues. Our staff members also monitor third-party download links shared on the forums and Wiki to make sure they're safe. If you have any questions about whether a game is safe, please contact an MFGG administrator.
Some antivirus programs detect certain legitimate programs as viruses, however. Because of the way Game Maker and Clickteam programs work, these games are occasionally flagged as viruses even though they're perfectly safe. If this happens, please feel free to contact an MFGG administrator or the company that made your antivirus tool.
Q: Why won't a game run on my computer?
A: Our Quality Control staffers check every game to make sure it'll run under normal conditions. However, there are still a lot of factors that affect whether a game will run under a particular system:
- Missing Clickteam DLLs: If a Clickteam game isn't running properly, try downloading these files and placing them in the same directory as the game's .EXE file. This is the most common problem with older Clickteam games not running properly.
- Missing libraries: Some games require external frameworks to be installed. DirectX is the most important one, but occasionally you'll find a game that requires a certain version of .NET, XNA, or Java. These libraries can be downloaded for free from their respective providers.
- Insufficient hardware: Most games on MFGG will run at full speed on even entry-level PCs. However, a few games, especially 3-D games, are more demanding. In those cases, you might need a better processor, a dedicated graphics card, or more RAM to enjoy the game at full quality. If it's not feasible to upgrade to a more powerful system, try closing any open programs and see if performance improves.
- Incompatible operating system: This is another common problem. Most games on MFGG are developed for Windows operating systems. If you're running another operating system - Mac, Linux, Android, or whatnot - you might not be able to run the game. Also, some newer games don't work in older versions of Windows - for example, games made in Game Maker Studio probably won't work in Windows 98! Fortunately, there are some workarounds - Windows Compatibility Mode, WINE, virtual machines, and dual-booting are some of the ways you might be able to play games that are otherwise incompatible with your computer.
- Antivirus software: Some overzealous antivirus programs give false positives when you run games made in Game Maker or Clickteam. If an antivirus program is blocking your game, try adding the game file to your exceptions list.
If you get an error message when launching or playing a game, write down the message and do a Google search for the text of the error message - you might find an easy solution to the problem.
Q: Why do I keep getting a pop-up about Sticky Keys when playing games in Windows?
A: Many fangames use Shift as the default key for jumping. Because jumping is such a common operation in platformers, you might inadvertently trigger a Sticky Keys dialog box. This happens if you press the Shift key five times in a row. Sticky Keys is a useful feature for people living with certain disabilities, but you probably don't want Sticky Keys to be enabled while playing a game. This feature can be disabled in the Control Panel - look in Accessibility Options or Ease of Access Center.
Alternatively, many games include customizable controls, and in those you can set the jump button to a key other than Shift.
Q: How do I make games?
A: There's a lot of different tools you can use for making games. Many MFGGers use one of the Game Maker or Clickteam products, but there are many other options available - Unity, Godot, Construct, and others. Some people even program their own engines using a language like C++or Java, although this is more complex.
When you're new to making games, try a few different tools. If you don't like one game-making tool, try another one - some people who don't like Game Maker find Clickteam to offer a better experience, and vice versa.
Q: How do I get better at making games?
A: Use tutorials and help files - if you don't know how to do something, the answer is often just a Google search away.
Seek feedback from other people who are more experienced than you - they'll be able to offer suggestions that can help you improve your coding, game design, and art.
You don't need to have any special training, certifications, or degrees to make games that people enjoy playing. However, your games will improve if you dedicate some time to learning the basic fundamentals of programming and art. For example, learning the basics of variables, data types, loops, operators, and arrays will be helpful when you're getting started.
Q: I submitted my game to the MFGG mainsite, but it's not appearing on the site! What's up?
A: When you submit a game to the MFGG mainsite, it goes into a queue and has to be approved by at least two Quality Control staffers before it can appear on the mainsite. This review process is designed to make sure that the game is meets the Submission Guidelines - we want to confirm it runs properly, doesn't break the rules, and is properly categorized. We do our best to process submissions in a timely fashion, but because all staff members are volunteers and have lives outside of MFGG, it can take a week or longer before we can process your submission. Hang in there.
Q: What can I do to speed up the process of approving my submission?
A: Approving mainsite submissions is always going to take a bit of time, but there are some steps you can take to make life easier for us and speed up the process:
- Make sure that titles and descriptions follow the basic rules of English and provide a brief overview of what the submission is.
- Make sure the submission is properly categorized - when submitting, go through all of the drop-down menus and checkboxes and see which categories your submission should be in.
- For games and graphics, make sure the thumbnail and/or preview images meet the guidelines. If the thumbnail is the wrong size or doesn't show the submission in question, we'll have to replace it manually (or else decline your submission).
- Submit high-quality work. High-quality submissions are easy for us to accept - we just have to check the categories, open the submission, and hit the Accept button. However, sometimes we'll get borderline-quality submissions - submissions that aren't blatantly terrible, but also have some flaws that might cause them to fall short of the standards set in the Submission Guidelines. These submissions require some discussion amongst the staff, and that slows down the process of handling submissions.
- Get feedback before you submit. You can share games and original graphics on the MFGG forums to get additional feedback from the community.
Q: Can I be a staff member on MFGG?
A: Probably not - at least not yet! We promote new staff members at least once per year - sometimes several times. When we're looking for new staff, whether on the forums, mainsite, or Discord, we'll usually put out a big announcement and give members of the community a chance to submit a letter of interest (and possibly take a short test to see whether they'd be a good fit for the role).
If you'd like to improve your chances of being selected for a staff role, we're looking for people who are friendly and level-headed, are willing to commit to being active, and are enthusiastic about helping make MFGG a better place.
Even if you're not a staff member, there's lots of things you can do to contribute to the MFGG community - submitting games and other resources, providing constructive feedback on other people's work, entering and voting in competitions, providing helpful suggestions for improving MFGG, and countless other ways.
A: These are MFGG's affiliates. These sites have some connection to Mario, fangaming, or MFGG itself. In return for MFGG listing them on our affiliates list, they add MFGG on their own affiliates list. This can help build mutually beneficial relationships between the communities, and it helps MFGGers find other sites that might interest them.
Q: Can my site be on the affiliates list?
A: It depends. If you run a site and you'd like to partner with MFGG, contact one of the site administrators and we'll discuss your proposal with the rest of the staff. Here are the criteria we'll consider:
- Common purpose: Does your site have something to do with MFGG? Most of our affiliates are other fangaming communities or Mario fansites. For example, a site full of Kirby fangames is relevant to MFGG, while a site focused on Touhou wallpaper or Major League Baseball stats probably isn't.
- Quality and quantity of content: Does your site have resources that MFGGers would find interesting or useful? Is the site organized so that people can find quality content?
- Activity: Is the site regularly being updated? Is the community vibrant? It's a bad sign if your last new content was added in 2014, or if your forum has 5 registered users and most of them are spambots.
- Leadership: Are you committed to keeping your site around for the foreseeable future? Are you doing an OK job of running the community? We're not in the business of telling our affiliates how to run their sites, but if we see things that are way out of bounds (say, content that's NSFW or highly offensive; extreme interpersonal drama; or software cracks or commercial ROM images), we're probably going to say no.
We reserve the right to remove current affiliates if they don't meet these standards - though if possible, we'll contact you before removing an affiliate.
Q: Can you delete my account?
A: MFGG doesn't have a functionality to delete accounts altogether (and even if we did, it would probably cause problems with the database). However, if for some reason you don't want to be associated with the site, we can change your username, change your e-mail address/contact information, or remove content.
Q: Can you remove something I submitted?
A: Yes we can. If you want something removed, just submit a report on the mainsite, and the Site Staff will take care of it within a few days. We want to request the wishes of site contributors, although we also recognize that MFGG plays an important role in preserving games and resources that may otherwise be lost. We'd prefer that you keep submissions on the site unless you have a good reason to remove them (for example, you're removing a demo after you submitted the full game).