When comparing Solar 2D (formerly Corona SDK) vs MonoGame, the Slant community recommends Solar 2D (formerly Corona SDK) for most people. In the question“What are the best 2D game engines?” Solar 2D (formerly Corona SDK) is ranked 14th while MonoGame is ranked 16th.
Ranked in these QuestionsQuestion Ranking
Pro Very simple to use
Corona SDK is completely free. That includes pro-tier plugins.
Pro Corona Simulator
Corona SDK ships with Corona Simulator, which runs your game/app directly on your PC/Mac and updates every time you make changes.
It provides immediate feedback to your actions, you can see your changes right on the screen, without necessity to make build to device. Getting instant feedback really boosts tenfold prototyping and development speed.
Pro Lua syntax
Uses the great and easy-to-learn Lua programming language.
Pro Good documentation and lots of tutorials
Pro Cross-platform desktop and mobile
Corona works on OS X, Windows and Android (including Kindle Fire & Nook).
Pro Very comprehensive API
It's very quick to get things up and running with Corona SDK. The API is extensive and while it's not 100% feature-complete with the iOS API, it's close enough that you could create tons of games and never run into a roadblock.
The API docs can be found here.
Pro Amazing learning curve
Corona does not throw photoshop-like madness full of buttons editor. You can go as fast as you want, learning and building game from ground up. Eventually, you'll learn how much corona is doing for you. But to start you don't have to master complex editor software. It's a great tool to learn to start game development if you want to learn how to program and make games. Your experience will be 100% transferable to any other Pro game engine.
Pro Content scaling
It's easy to create a game that looks good on many different sized mobile devices.
Pro Live builds - update builds running on a device automatically
With the live build feature, once you have created a build and installed on a device, you get lightning fast turnaround times because any change on the code or data is updated to the devices running the game (within the local WiFi) immediately. So changes can be tested on the real hardware within a very few seconds.
What's even more impressive, this even works flawless with multiple devices running the game. You have to use it to learn how good of a feature this is while development and even more, while doing QA. Imagine fixing bugs and everyone of your QA team/friends/whoever helps to get your game done, has all changes on his device without doing anything but waiting 5 seconds - outstanding.
Pro Marketplace for 3rd party plug-ins
Pro Great community
Pro Ability to call any native (C/C++/Obj-C/Java) library
Pro Completely free
Since Corona SDK became Solar2D, it's completely free, as only some third-party plugins are paid.
Pro Open Source
Since Corona SDK became Solar2D, it's completely open source under MIT license.
Pro Well supported
Support for iOS, Android, Mac OS X, Linux, Windows (both OpenGL and DirectX), Windows 8 Store, Windows Phone 8, PlayStation Mobile, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch, and the OUYA console with even more platforms on the way.
Pro Open source
All the code is available to you ensuring you'll have the ability to make changes when you need to or even port to whole new platforms.
Pro Managed code
By leveraging C# and other .NET languages on Microsoft and Mono platforms you can write modern, fast, and reliable game code.
Pro Good community
The community MonoGame has to offer is helpful and mature.
Pro Performance on desktop
The performance on desktop platforms matches that of C++, but you still get all the pleasant features that C# has to offer.
Pro Well-known and documented API
The framework implements the XNA 4 API, so games made in XNA can be ported to other platforms using this. This was the same API used by the Xbox Live Indie Games platform so there's lots of documentation online for it.
Con Closed source
Con Free, but not completely
Con Making a device build requires internet connection
To build your app for the device (iOS/Android/AppleTV) Corona requires to fetch resources from online. This would include base application template and plugins. This allows not to perform local build or use Xcode or Android Studio to do a build. Even Large games/apps would build very fast with good internet connection.
Your code never leaves computed. Corona SDK would transfer some information to determine which plugins and pieces has to be transferred in order to make a final steps in build.
As a bonus - you get basically one button press to get from your Corona Simulator game to game on a device.
Con Slow Rate of Updates
Versions 3.8 and 3.9 are both overdue by a year, and version 4.0 is set to release in 2040.
Con Non-Windows tools are a bit funky
Monogame support for Xamarin Studio or Monodevelop is a bit shaky especially for library references. Only good non-Windows IDE compatible with MonoGame is Rider and that costs money & isn't open-source.