About a year ago we reported on Pawbyte's Game Pencil Engine, development software that also operates as a 2D editor, that was released for PC development. The key news was that it was also promising future support for the Wii U, adding to tools such as Construct and Impact, in particular, in helping developers create HTML5 games.
Game Pencil Engine has now formally launched with a price tag of $20 (or more, if you want), and Wii U developers can have access to an export tool for the system, though normal members of the public that buy it will only be able to use a standard HTML5 and 'Desktop' export for Mac, Windows and Linux. The program's developer, Nathan Hurde, has confirmed that authorised Wii U developers will be able to export out of the development tool for potential releases on the console, presumably utilising the Nintendo Web Framework capabilities of the system.
So what does this development tool do? The link at the end of this article has a full feature list, while a launch trailer below provides a summary.
It'll be interesting to see whether any projects created through this engine make it to the Wii U eShop; much will depend on how successfully it meets developer's expectations. The idea of a relatively easy-to-use tool to make 2D games is naturally appealing, but aforementioned rivals like Construct have had a head start, while many naturally transition to well-known development engines like Unity.
Let us know what you think of Game Pencil Engine in the comments.