Dark GDK
Free Professional Game Development Environment

The Dark GDK (C++ and .NET) game development packages are free for you to download and use as you like.

Visual C++ 2008

Dark GDK offers you the power of DarkBASIC Professional, with complete integration into Visual C++ 2008 Express's development environment.

Harness the power and performance of C++

Royalty-free license (for personal use)

Full IntelliSense support in Visual C++ 2008 Express

Beginner and Advanced tutorials including:

Shaders - Beginner and Advanced Tutorials on adding Shaders to your games

Game Level - Walkthru for the process of loading and moving around a game level

3D Objects - learn how to load and animate 3D objects within a game

Dark Invaders - Advanced and comprehensive game tutorial

and more ...

Easy Game Development

Here's an example to show just how easy Dark GDK is:

// whenever using Dark GDK you must ensure you include the header file
#include "DarkGDK.h"

// the main entry point for the application is this function
void DarkGDK ( void )
    // turn on sync rate and set maximum rate to 60 fps
    dbSyncOn   ( );
    dbSyncRate ( 60 );

    // switch to the media directory, load our world
    // and turn lighting off
    SetCurrentDirectory ( "media" );
    dbLoadObject        ( "universe.dbo", 1 );
    dbSetObjectLight    ( 1, 0 );

    // load a model for our sky
    dbLoadObject        ( "skybox2.x", 2 );
    dbSetObjectLight    ( 2, 0 );
    dbSetObjectTexture    ( 2, 3, 2 );
    dbScaleObject        ( 2, 5000, 5000, 5000 );

    // position the camera
    dbPositionCamera    ( 434, 42, -517 );

    // camera variables
    float fCameraAngleX = 0.0f;
    float fCameraAngleY = 0.0f;

    // our main loop
    while ( LoopGDK ( ) )
        // move the camera using the arrow keys
        dbControlCameraUsingArrowKeys ( 0, 5.0f, 0.3f );

        // create a rotation axis based on mouse movement
        fCameraAngleX = dbWrapValue ( fCameraAngleX + dbMouseMoveY ( ) * 0.4f );
        fCameraAngleY = dbWrapValue ( fCameraAngleY + dbMouseMoveX ( ) * 0.4f );

        // rotate camera
        dbXRotateCamera ( fCameraAngleX );
        dbYRotateCamera ( fCameraAngleY );
        // update the screen
        dbSync ( );

    // return back to windows

The code above will load a 3D level (exported from FPS Creator), complete with skybox, and allow the player to walk around it using the arrow keys. Many of the commands used are similar to those found in our flagship development package DarkBASIC Professional.

Examples and Media

A selection of example programs are provided with the Dark GDK demonstrating how to take advantage of its many features. Several brand new demos have been created and others converted from the original DarkBASIC Professional to demonstrate the benefits when using the Dark GDK.

Also included is a collection of fully animated and professionally produced 3D objects:

25+ People and Monsters

20+ Vehicles

10+ Weapons

Plus Much More!

Extra game assets included are:

Videos, Bitmaps and Models

35 MIDI music files

120+ Audio Files

200+ WAV sound effect files

4 MP3 game soundtracks

Add extra assets to your games with our DarkMATTER 2 and DarkMATTER 3 collections.


Dark GDK is also available for the .NET platform. For more details go here - Dark GDK .NET


Download Dark GDK now and get started!

Free Screen Saver Source Code powered by PhysX

Ever wanted to create your very own screen saver but did not know where to start? Well thanks to the ease of DarkGDK and some handy source code from The Game Creators you can be up and running within the day with the Free PhysX Screen Saver which you can download from this site right now. Not only does it show you how to set-up a fully functional screen saver in C++, it also taps into the power of the NVIDIA PhysX physics engine to bring fluids, cloth and soft bodies into the 3D simulation.

To check out the complete screen saver, simply download the latest graphics Power Pack from NVIDIA

To recompile the source code you will need the following tools:

  • 1) Visual Studio C++ 2008 (or the Express Edition)
  • 2) DirectX SDK March 2008 (or later)
  • 3) NVIDIA PhyX SDK 2.7.3 (available from NVIDIA)
  • 4) DarkGDK with the November 2008 update installed
  • 5) A purchased copy of DarkPHYSICS (download the Dark GDK Update - 26th November 2008)
  • 6) A copy of MOLEBOX Pro (available from www.molebox.com)

A readme as part of the download contains full instructions on the steps you need to take to reproduce the screen saver. You are free to use the screen saver source code for any purpose providing you use the source code at your own risk, and a credit to The Game Creators would be very much appreciated but not required.

Download the screen saver source code

Starting Out with Games and Graphics in C++

If you are new to C++ then we highly recommend this accessible, step-by-step presentation uses graphical examples and simple, complete, video games to teach programming skills and C++.

  • Introduction to Computers and Programming
  • Graphics Programming with C++ and the Dark GDK
  • Variables, Colors, and Calculations
  • void Functions
  • Working with Images
  • Control Structures
  • The Game Loop and Animation
  • Value-Returning Functions and Mouse Input
  • Arrays and Text Processing
  • Working with Files
  • Object-Oriented Programming.
  • Scones McNabb
  • Vulture Trouble
  • Object-Oriented Vulture Trouble.

The book is ideal for beginning C++ programmers. Click on the link below to purchase it from Amazon.