Defold Product Overview

Defold is a turn-key solution, providing everything you need to build a game. Learn about the major features of the engine on this product page. Make sure to also check the Learn pages for additional and more detailed information.

2D focused, 3D capable

Defold is built from the ground up as a 3D engine with special focus on top-notch tools for 2D game creation. Build your games using a component based system for maximum performance and modularity.


Defold has a powerful animation system for visual components and scripts. Use flipbook animations for sprites and other 2D components, bone animations for models and property animations for movement, rotation, tweens and other values.

Artist friendly

Assemble and layout your game in the artist friendly scene editor. Build levels, player characters, bosses, screens and user interface components all from within the editor.

GUI editor
  • Layered GUI with text, images and pie nodes
  • GUI clipping/stencil masks
  • GUI image nodes support 9-slice texturing
  • Automatic GUI layout with support for orientation changes
  • Bitmap and distance field fonts
  • Use GUI templates to reuse UI elements and quickly build complex views
Scene editor
  • Scene editor for assembling and laying out assets
  • Prefab construction of game objects
  • Create hierarchies to organise and group objects

Advanced physics simulations

Attach collision shapes and physics properties to your objects and have them interact in real time. React to collisions using code to create complex interactions.

Fully scriptable

Write all of your game logic using the Lua scripting language. Lua is a commonly used scripting language for games with an easy to learn syntax and great performance.

  • Integrated code editor with syntax highlighting, code completion and LSP
  • Integrated debugger - step through code and inspect variable
  • Fully scriptable rendering pipeline with low level access
  • Optional typed Lua using Teal.
Reactive code style
  • Engine supports reactive-style Lua scripting for low overhead and great performance
  • Asynchronous communication between game objects

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With Defold you create your game once and export to all supported platforms without making any changes. The Defold APIs work across all platforms and you do not have to worry about typical platform specific things such as file paths, texture formats, input methods, render pipelines, networking protocols or in-app purchasing systems. We got you covered!

Truly cross-platform
  • One-click deployment to all target platforms from the same code and content
  • Additional platforms such as Steam and Facebook Instant Games supported via extensions
  • Editor and tools running on Mac OS X, Windows and Linux
  • Turn-key software with no dependencies on other programs - No need for Xcode or Android Studio for mobile deployment!
  • WebGL, OpenGL, Vulkan and Metal
Surprisingly lightweight
  • Static content dependencies and automatic resource management. Only used assets are included in game builds
  • Sprite packing to atlases
  • Texture compression configurable per platform
  • Dynamic batching in the render pipeline

Performance and stability

Defold has a very small engine runtime and it performs really well even on old hardware. We spend a significant amount of effort to make sure it stays that way. The engine is designed from the ground up to conserve memory, take up little disk space and not waste CPU cycles. Keeping the engine small allows you to release games on platforms which many other engines are unable to support.

Small engine
PLATFORM DEFOLD 1.4.7 UNITY 2022.3.3f1 GODOT 4.0.3
Android (32+64 bit) 3.4MB 18.9MB 39.6MB
iOS (64 bit) 1.3MB 7.3MB ?
HTML5 (wasm, gzip) 956KB 2.7MB 9.8MB

Test made using an empty project. Exported to target platform using default settings. Release builds.

Rapid workflow

Long turnaround time kills productivity and hampers creativity. Developers should be able to rapidly test new ideas, iterate on game mechanics or tweak levels. That is why a Defold build usually takes only a couple of seconds. You're even able to push new or updated content and game logic to an already running game on your desktop, phone or console.

Hot reload
  • Hot reloading of updated assets and logic - change anything and instantly see the change in your game
  • Wireless hot reloading, debugging and visual profiling on device
  • Hot reload with custom Lua hooks for setup and inspection
Custom workflows
  • Stand alone build pipeline for custom workflows - integrate with your own scripts or CI framework
  • Headless builds for automated testing
  • Library sharing between projects - reuse code and assets
  • Asset Portal with reusable components - official and community developed
  • All data in easily merged text files
Build and refactor
  • Fast build times. All build targets, even HTML5, are completed in seconds
  • Asynchronous (or synchronous) loading of asset data
  • Automatic refactoring of assets
Optimize and debug
  • Live on-screen visual profiler
  • Remote web-based profiler with visual frame sampling
  • Built-in video capture of game footage
  • Native crash log APIs

Add Engine Features with Native Extensions

The Defold SDK allows you to write extensions to the engine in C, C++, ObjectiveC, Java and JavaScript.

Develop extensions directly in Defold without the need for setup or extra compilers. We build a custom engine for you in the cloud.

Typical use cases are:

  • High performance calculations and data processing.
  • Access to specific hardware, for instance the camera on mobile phones.
  • Interact with external SDKs, for instance advertising or analytics.

Learn more about Native Extensions

Production ready

Defold is a battle tested and production ready game engine. Integrations with popular third party analytics, app economy and game services are officially supported and maintained by the Defold Foundation.

Why use Defold and not some other engine?

We get this question from time to time, but it is not really a question that can be answered without elaborating a bit on the design philosophy of Defold. We make no claim that Defold is the best game engine out there for any game, but we dare to say that Defold is the best game engine for some games. We have spent a lot of time and effort making sure that certain key elements of the game development process are as smooth and effortless as possible and we believe it makes Defold stand out from the crowd. Read on to learn more.

Free to use and developer friendly

Defold is a free to use game engine with a developer-friendly license for both personal and commercial use.

Learn more

Ready to create something awesome?

Download for free
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Special Partners
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