Click here to Skip to main content
15,666,033 members
Articles / Mobile Apps / iOS
Posted 6 Apr 2015



Creating multi-platform games with Cocos2d-x version 3.0 or later

6 Apr 2015CPOL6 min read
In this tutorial you’ll learn how to create a simple game using the Cocos2d-x framework, version 3.0 or later, in a Windows* development environment and how to compile it to run on Windows and Android*.

This article is in the Product Showcase section for our sponsors at CodeProject. These articles are intended to provide you with information on products and services that we consider useful and of value to developers.

Intel® Developer Zone offers tools and how-to information for cross-platform app development, platform and technology information, code samples, and peer expertise to help developers innovate and succeed. Join our communities for Android, Internet of Things, Intel® RealSense™ Technology, and Windows to download tools, access dev kits, share ideas with like-minded developers, and participate in hackathon’s, contests, roadshows, and local events.

In this tutorial you’ll learn how to create a simple game using the Cocos2d-x framework, version 3.0 or later, in a Windows* development environment and how to compile it to run on Windows and Android*.

What is Cocos2d-x?

Cocos2d-x is a cross-platform framework for games (and other graphical apps, like interactive books) based on the cocos2d for iOS*, but using C++, JavaScript*, or Lua* instead of Objective-C*.

One of the advantages of this framework is to create games that can be deployed on different platforms (Android, iOS, Win32, Windows* Phone, Mac*, Linux*, etc.), keeping the same code base with a few platform-specific adaptations for each one.

Cocos2d-x Console

The cocos2d-console was introduced in the 3.0 version. It is a command line tool that provides some functionality to manage Cocos2d-x or Cocos2d-JS projects like: creation, execution, building, debug, etc.

Creating your first game

1 - Download the latest version of the framework and unzip it in your development environment. In this tutorial the 3.3rc0 version was used, and the framework was unzipped to the desktop (C:\Users\intel-user\Desktop\cocos2d-x-3.3rc0).

Image 1

Figure 1. Cocos2d-x version 3.3 RC0 directory structure

2 – To create a new project in cocos2d-x, use (a Python* script) located in the framework folder to configure all the environment variables to build for Win32 and Android platforms. You will need to download, install and configure the items below before executing

If you haven’t installed Python Runtime, download the 2.7.6 version from here:

Image 2

Figure 2. location

3 - Open the command prompt (cmd.exe) and execute the following commands:

- Navigate to the script folder (framework folder):
cd C:\Users\intel-user\Desktop\cocos2d-x-3.3rc0

- Run the script
python (or only)

Note: To run the Python command from the command prompt, add the folder where Python was installed to the environment variable path.

- The script will request the installation path of Android SDK, Android NDK, and ANT.

  • Android NDK folder path:

Image 3

Figure 3. Cocos2d-console requesting NDK folder path
  • Android SDK folder path:

Image 4

Figure 4. Cocos2d-console requesting SDK folder path
  • Apache ANT bin folder path:

Image 5

Figure 5. Cocos2d-console requesting ANT bin folder path

After including the requested paths, reopen the command prompt (cmd.exe). This action is necessary to use cocos2d-console commands.

4 – Type cmd.exe to go to the command prompt (cocos2d-console commands can only be issued from here) and open the framework folder again:

cd C:\Users\intel-user\Desktop\cocos2d-x-3.3rc0

In the step below we will create a new Cocos2d-x project:

cocos new MyGame –p com.Project.MyGame –l cpp –d Project

Image 6

Figure 6. Created Cocos2d-x project

Here are quick explanations of the parameters:

  • new: creates a new project and must be followed by the name of the project (in the example, MyGame)
  • -p: defines package name
  • -l: select programming language. The value can be cpp or lua
  • -d: directory where the framework will create the project structure

If everything went all right, your project will be created in the Project folder, in the directory where framework was extracted.

Image 7

Figure 7. MyGame directory structure

The created project contains the base code of the game (Classes), the resources (images, audio, etc.), and one project for each framework-supported platform.

Building Android* Apps


  • You need to configure all the environment variables for building Android app games (Android SDK, Android NDK, and ANT). If you have not done this step yet, please see the “Creating your first game” section of this article.
  • Java Development Kit (JDK) installed

Note: Cocos2d-console uses the javac command to build for Android, because of this is necessary add JAVA_HOME environment variable (JDK path).

1 – We are going to compile our game for more than one architecture, since the framework doesn’t compile for x86 and armeabi-v7a by default. Edit the file located in:


Image 8

Figure 8. location

2 – Add the following line to the file:

APP_ABI := armeabi armeabi-v7a x86

Image 9

Figure 9. after APP_ABI line added

Now that we added our targeted architectures, let’s compile our game!

3 – Using the command prompt, go to the framework folder:

cd C:\Users\intel-user\Desktop\cocos2d-x-3.3rc0

4 – Execute the command below to compile and run the game for Android.

cocos run –s Project\MyGame –p android

Image 10

Figure 10. Executing command to compile and run the game on Android*
  • run: compile and run the project
  • -s: path to project folder
  • -p: selected platform

Note: To compile only, enter: cocos compile –s Project\MyGame –p android

If everything worked properly, the cocos2d-console command will use adb (if configured in environment variables) to install the APK file in a connected device or initialized emulator. If they aren’t available, the command will wait for a device or an emulator to become available, like the picture below:

Image 11

Figure 11. Command waiting for device or initialized emulator

If you have initialized an emulator or connected a device, this screen will appear:

Image 12

Figure 12. Game screen on Android* platform

Building Win32 Apps (for Windows* 7 or Windows* 8 desktop mode)

You will need Visual Studio* 2012 or later to build.

1 – Using the command prompt (cmd.exe), go to the folder where framework was extracted:

cd C:\Users\intel-user\Desktop\cocos2d-x-3.3rc0

2 – Execute the following command to compile and run the game on Windows:

cocos run –s Project\MyGame –p win32

Image 13

Figure 13. Executing command to compile and run the game on Windows*

Here are quick explanations of the parameters:

  • run: compile and run the selected project
  • -s: path to project folder
  • -p: selected platform

Note: To compile only, use “compile” instead of “run”, as follows:

cocos compile –s Project\MyGame –p win32

After executing the run command, you will see the following screen if everything worked ok:

Image 14

Figure 14. Game screen in Windows* platform

It’s possible to use Visual Studio to compile and run the game project:

1 – Inside the Project directory, open with Visual Studio MyGame.sln file in the “proj.win32” folder.

Image 15

Figure 15. Win32 project directory structure

2 – To compile the project, press F6 (or Build menu -> Build Solution) and press F5 to execute it (or Debug menu -> Start Debugging). After building and executing, you should see the same screen presented after the console steps.

Image 16

Figure 16. Win32 project opened in Visual Studio*

Ok, now you know how to create your game and compile it for Android (x86 and ARM*), Windows 7, and Windows 8 (desktop mode)!


The source code of Cocos2d-x framework is granted under the MIT License, and it be can be found here.

Cocos2d-x and its documentation:



At this time, the release version of Cocos2d-x 3.3 has an issue during project creation which doesn’t allow users to create projects (details by clicking here). The problem has been fixed in the latest pre-release, but is not available on the Cocos2d-x latest release yet.


This article, along with any associated source code and files, is licensed under The Code Project Open License (CPOL)

Written By
United States United States
Intel is inside more and more Android devices, and we have tools and resources to make your app development faster and easier.

Comments and Discussions

-- There are no messages in this forum --