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Cyber Smurf



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  22/08/2008
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14th September, 2008 at 14:34:36 -

Just curious...

How do you all plan a game from the start? Do you make drafts of all on paper? Do you create graphics first, then gameplay - or the other way around? Is story important? etc.

Share your ideas and experience, when it comes to game design. I'm not asking how you code, just how you plan a project!

 
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Eternal Man [EE]

Pitied the FOO

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14th September, 2008 at 15:13:51 -

That all depends on the project!
If it's just something I make for my own amusement, i.e something I make just because I want to be creative, I usually make it up as I go, starting with the main sprite.

But if it is a serious project that I really want to see finished it has usually started with a vision of the end result. Whilst envisioning the different aspects of the game and story I always work on the main sprite, when I have done a good pose and tidied it up I make a few temporary backdrop tiles and place the sprite there.

Now I have a source of inspiration for the heavier workload outside the computer.

At this stage, I try to pen down all ideas and structure them. Most projects tend to die at this stage, but if you manage to make it past here the project has a good chance of seeing the light of day.

Next, I make a structured list of the engine's features and one for the actual gameplay elements. When finished and satisfied with the features, I try and figure out a red line through the process of making the engine, i.e where do I start building it and where do I end?

This is where the process of creation really starts, I make temp gfx when needed as I go along creating the engine. A golden rule in my creative process is that I never start making a second level of a game before the first one is complete with all the planned features and gfx.

The menu structure is easy to add afterwards, so I always make that last.

That's usually how I go along. How about you? How do you do it?

//EE

 
Eternal Entertainment's Code'n'Art Man

E_E = All Indie


...actually Ell Endie, but whatever.
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Cyber Smurf



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  22/08/2008
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14th September, 2008 at 15:52:11 -

Of course, I forgot to tell how I usually work, when I design games!

The first thing, is the basic idea, what do I want to see as a game? When I have the basic idea (Usually I write it down. It contents are only a couple or so lines), I make a game concept. The game concept is a further developement of the basic idea, here the goal and main story plot (if a story is needed) is included, and some other goodie stuff, the one I call background (in Return of Balzar), and what the core gameplay is (I did not properly do this, in Maze of Thor's Harbour, that's why that project is on hold - for now). After the game concept is done, I will go over to a design document. Here I put more detail in, of the overall game. Sprite drafts, game objects, some level design, mechanics of gameplay, flow of game (a possible outcome of the game) and other details which seem fit. At this stage, I usually try different loops, routines, some code (clicking ), to see how the ideas work. After this, it is hard work. Alot of drawing, trying, testing, trying again etc. Not all projects need this kind of planning, but as it is said before by EE - it depends on the project.

Sometimes - of course, I just doodle around, to try different things (pong'n'pong and falling bricks are examples of this )

 
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AndyUK

Mascot Maniac

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  01/08/2002
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Game of the Week WinnerSecond GOTW AwardHas Donated, Thank You!VIP Member
14th September, 2008 at 16:48:16 -

Personally I don't plan at all. I just add things as they come into my head.
Which, let me tell you is not the best way to do it.

 
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Marko

I like you You like you

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  08/05/2008
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Has Donated, Thank You!Game of the Week WinnerVIP Member360 OwnerDos Rules!Happy FellahCrazy EvilI am an April FoolGingerbread House
14th September, 2008 at 17:29:06 -

I usually start with an idea for a game, really basic (like a tank game, that basic!). Then i make a tank and a background in MMF2 and make the tank moevement. Then i see if it's like how i imagined it and if it 'feels' right. If i like it so far i'll design the whole game (plot, environment ideas, sprite design etc) on paper, then it just takes off from there.

Menu design and game music comes in last - i do this on purpose because i want them both to fit the game, not make the game fit the menus/music (or worst still, make neither fit anything!). When it's all come together i smarten up the special effects and tighten the gameplay. Then comes playtesting and bug searching. Then it should be done! Should.......

 
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-MacAdaM-

Megaman Fosho

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  12/02/2008
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14th September, 2008 at 18:02:50 -

Hahah, im bad at finishing games but here mine.

-Start off with a idea I get randomly from my head.
-Go to the computer, draw sprites, and try and get them the way I imagined.
-After I like the sprites, make an engine
-After the engine, make more sprites (Background stuff, monsters, things like that.)
-Then I have sprites, and the engine, and I make some levels.

-2 weeks later, get a new idea, say its abandoned, and start new game

 
Your just jealous that you're not as awesome as me.
(And my megaman avatar )

Muz



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  14/02/2002
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VIP MemberI'm on a BoatI am an April FoolHonored Admin Alumnus
17th September, 2008 at 01:52:06 -

I usually take on big, fat projects which seem to be impossible to grab one part at a time I plan to write a really long article on it later, once I've got the process right.

Basically,
- I write up the game concept first
- start designing the core engines and stuff (GUI, controls, physics engine or whatever)
- code it
- I start designing the little bits like enemies and stuff
- then, i make the game
- fine-tuning after. Fine tuning is very important, IMHO!

 
Disclaimer: Any sarcasm in my posts will not be mentioned as that would ruin the purpose. It is assumed that the reader is intelligent enough to tell the difference between what is sarcasm and what is not.

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Jon C-B

I create vaporware

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  23/04/2008
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I'm an alien!VIP MemberWii OwnerI donated an open source project Santa Hat
17th September, 2008 at 01:54:56 -


Originally Posted by MacAdaM
Hahah, im bad at finishing games but here mine.

-Start off with a idea I get randomly from my head.
-Go to the computer, draw sprites, and try and get them the way I imagined.
-After I like the sprites, make an engine
-After the engine, make more sprites (Background stuff, monsters, things like that.)
-Then I have sprites, and the engine, and I make some levels.

-2 weeks later, get a new idea, say its abandoned, and start new game


Yep thats me

 
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