Pygame is free. Released under the GPL License, you can create open source, free, freeware, shareware, and commercial games with it. See the licence for full details.
For a nice introduction to pygame, examine the line-by-line chimp tutorial, and the introduction for python programmers or Chapters 17 to 20 of "Invent Your Own Computer Games with Python".
Facts About Pygame
- Silliness built in. Pygame is meant to make software things fun. New silliness is added every 3.1415 seconds.
- Does not require OpenGL. With many people having broken OpenGL setups, requiring OpenGL exclusively will cut into your user base significantly. Pygame uses either opengl, directx, windib, X11, linux frame buffer, and many other different backends... including an ASCII art backend! OpenGL is often broken on linux systems, and also on windows systems - which is why professional games use multiple backends.
- Multi core CPUs can be used easily. With dual core CPUs common, and 8 core CPUs cheaply available on desktop systems, making use of multi core CPUs allows you to do more in your game. Selected pygame functions release the dreaded python GIL, which is something you can do from C code.
- Uses optimized C, and Assembly code for core functions. C code is often 10-20 times faster than python code, and assembly code can easily be 100x or more times faster than python code.
- Comes with many Operating systems. Just an apt-get, emerge, pkg_add, or yast install away. No need to mess with installing it outside of your operating systems package manager. Comes with binary installers (and uninstallers) for Windows or MacOS X. Pygame does not require setuptools, or ctypes to install.
- Truly portable. Supports Linux (pygame comes with most mainstream linux distributions), Windows (95,98,me,2000,XP,vista, 64bit windows etc), Windows CE, BeOS, MacOS, Mac OS X, FreeBSD, NetBSD, OpenBSD, BSD/OS, Solaris, IRIX, and QNX. The code contains support for AmigaOS, Dreamcast, Atari, AIX, OSF/Tru64, RISC OS, SymbianOS, and OS/2, but these are not officially supported. You can use it on hand held devices from nokia, game consoles like gp2x, and the One Laptop Per Child (OLPC).
- It's Simple and easy to use. Kids and adults make games with pygame. Pygame is used in the OLPC project and has been taught in courses to young kids, and college students. It's also used by people who first programmed in z80 assembler, or c64 basic.
- Does not require a GUI to use all functions. You can use pygame without a monitor - like if you want to use it just to process images, get joystick input, or play sounds.
- Fast response to reported bugs. Some bugs are patched within an hour of being reported. Do a search on our mailing list for BUG... you'll see for yourself. Sometimes we suck at bug fixes, but mostly we're pretty good bug fixers. Bug reports are quite rare these days, since a lot of them have been fixed already.
- Small amount of code. It does not have hundreds of thousands of lines of code for things you won't use anyway. The core is kept simple, and extra things like GUI libraries, and effects are developed separately outside of pygame.