What is it:
Flowlab is a free, browser-based game development tool that requires no coding. You need to create an account to get started, but can begin making a game within minutes.
Games can be played in the browser or exported as apps for iOS or Android.
The interface is very similar to Bloxels Builder (see the Matchstick review of Bloxels), which is also free.
Who is it for:
Flowlab is meant for kids, although anyone who is curious about game development but wary of code would enjoy at least fooling around with the interface.
Look at some of the games people have made and you’ll see that you can actually create some interesting projects.
What Kids Like:
Kids like the quick learning curve, how you can get started right away. They also like the community aspect – the idea that you can share your work and have others try it out.
There’s also an active forum where kids can answer each others’ questions. As far as I can see, the forum is moderated well and seems like a safe place for kids to interact online.
What Parents Like:
I like that it is an alternative to playing games. If the kids want screen time but I think they’ve been spending too much time on videos or playing games, a tool like this counts toward education.
What the Critics Think:
I haven’t found any reviews for Flowlab, despite it being out for a year or so (released October 2019).
There is a very small, but passionate group on reddit
The tool itself is good, maintained well. I have no complaints about that. There is something of a mystery however, about who actually is in charge. And if I ‘m going to create an account for my child, and have them interact with strangers online, I want to know who is running the thing.
Who Made it:
Flowlab, despite it’s polished look, seems to be the work of a small group, or possibly an individual who goes by the handle, Grazer
Released in October 2019. You can browse the release notes, which gives a sense of how actively the tool is getting updated.
Where Can I Get it: